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Sample records for afrotropical bird species

  1. Fluctuating asymmetry increases with habitat disturbance in seven bird species of a fragmented afrotropical forest

    PubMed Central

    Lens, L.; Dongen, S. van; Wilder, C. M.; Brooks, T. M.; Matthysen, E.

    1999-01-01

    We studied fluctuating asymmetry (FA) in the tarsus length of seven forest-restricted bird species, two of which are globally critically endangered, in three indigenous forest remnants of a recently fragmented, afrotropical biodiversity hot spot. Based on mixed regression analysis and an extension of Levene's test, individuals from the most degraded fragment showed four- to sevenfold higher asymmetry levels compared to those from the least degraded one, with intermediate levels in the moderately disturbed fragment. When comparing contemporary FA levels with measurements of museum specimens collected 50 years ago, we found highly significant increases in asymmetry in the most degraded fragment but no differences in the least degraded one. These strikingly parallel spatial and temporal patterns across species confirm that repeated measurements of FA can provide a sensitive early warning system for monitoring stress effects in highly threatened ecosystems.

  2. New species of Afrotropical Muscidae (Diptera: Muscoidea).

    PubMed

    Couri, Márcia; Pont, Adrian C

    2014-01-01

    The study of recently collected Afrotropical Muscidae (Diptera) from Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya and South Africa has revealed ten new species which are described herein: Coenosia duomaculata sp. nov., C. nigromaculata sp. nov., C. fragilis sp. nov., Helina harrisorum sp. nov., H. ferfriniorum sp. nov., Hydrotaea tantula sp. nov., Limnophora diminuta sp. nov., L. antennalis sp. nov., Spilogona brunnea sp. nov. and S. bella sp. nov. Coenosia, Helina and Limnophora are speciose muscid genera, found throughout the Afrotropical Region, while Hydrotaea and Spilogona have a more restricted geographic distribution and include some 20 species each. 

  3. Breeding biology of an afrotropical forest understory bird community in northeastern Tanzania

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Mkongewa, Victor J.; Newmark, William D.; Stanley, Thomas R.

    2013-01-01

    Many aspects of the breeding biology of Afrotropical forest birds are poorly known. Here we provide a description based on the monitoring of 1461 active nests over eight breeding seasons about one or more aspects of the breeding biology for 28 coexisting understory bird species on the Amani Plateau in the East Usambara Mountains, Tanzania. Mean nest height and mean distance of nest from forest edge varied widely among species with most species constructing nests across a broad vertical and forest edge to interior gradient. However, there were important exceptions with all sunbird species and several dove and waxbill species constructing nests in close proximity to the forest edge. For 17 common species for which we recorded two or more active nests, mean clutch size across species was 1.9 eggs per clutch, the lowest site-specific mean clutch size yet reported for a tropical forest bird community. For nine bird species, a subset of the 17 common species, length of breeding season, defined as the difference between the earliest and latest recorded incubation onset date, ranged from 88–139 days. Most of these nine species displayed a unimodal distribution in incubation onset dates across a breeding season which extended from the end of August through middle January. In summary, a wide variation exists in most aspects of the breeding biology within an understory forest bird community in the East Usambara Mountains.

  4. Circannual rhythm of resting metabolic rate of a small Afrotropical bird.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Lindy J; Brown, Mark; Downs, Colleen T

    2015-07-01

    Seasonal variation in avian metabolic rate is well established in Holarctic and temperate species, while trends in Afrotropical species are relatively poorly understood. Furthermore, given the paucity of data on circannual rhythm in avian metabolism, it is not known whether seasonal measurements made in summer and winter correspond with annual peaks and troughs in avian metabolic rate. Thus, we investigated how mean body mass, resting metabolic rate (RMR) and evaporative water loss (EWL) of a small Afrotropical bird, the Cape white-eye (Zosterops virens), changed monthly over the course of a year at 20°C and 25°C. Mean body mass was 12.2±1.0g throughout the study period. However, both EWL and RMR varied monthly, and peaks and troughs in RMR occurred in March and October respectively, which did not correspond to peaks and troughs in mean monthly outdoor ambient temperatures. These results suggest that measuring RMR at the height of summer and winter may underestimate the flexibility of which birds are capable in terms of their metabolic rate. We encourage further studies on this topic, to establish whether the lag between environmental temperature and RMR is consistent in other species.

  5. Habitat fragmentation reduces nest survival in an Afrotropical bird community in a biodiversity hotspot

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Newmark, W.D.; Stanley, T.R.

    2011-01-01

    Ecologists have long hypothesized that fragmentation of tropical landscapes reduces avian nest success. However, this hypothesis has not been rigorously assessed because of the difficulty of finding large numbers of well-hidden nests in tropical forests. Here we report that in the East Usambara Mountains in Tanzania, which are part of the Eastern Arc Mountains, a global biodiversity hotspot, that daily nest survival rate and nest success for seven of eight common understory bird species that we examined over a single breeding season were significantly lower in fragmented than in continuous forest, with the odds of nest failure for these seven species ranging from 1.9 to 196.8 times higher in fragmented than continuous forest. Cup-shaped nests were particularly vulnerable in fragments. We then examined over six breeding seasons and 14 study sites in a multivariable survival analysis the influence of landscape structure and nest location on daily nest survival for 13 common species representing 1,272 nests and four nest types (plate, cup, dome, and pouch). Across species and nest types, area, distance of nest to edge, and nest height had a dominant influence on daily nest survival, with area being positively related to nest survival and distance of nest to edge and nest height being both positively and negatively associated with daily nest survival. Our results indicate that multiple environmental factors contribute to reduce nest survival within a tropical understory bird community in a fragmented landscape and that maintaining large continuous forest is important for enhancing nest survival for Afrotropical understory birds.

  6. Habitat fragmentation reduces nest survival in an Afrotropical bird community in a biodiversity hotspot

    PubMed Central

    Newmark, William D.; Stanley, Thomas R.

    2011-01-01

    Ecologists have long hypothesized that fragmentation of tropical landscapes reduces avian nest success. However, this hypothesis has not been rigorously assessed because of the difficulty of finding large numbers of well-hidden nests in tropical forests. Here we report that in the East Usambara Mountains in Tanzania, which are part of the Eastern Arc Mountains, a global biodiversity hotspot, that daily nest survival rate and nest success for seven of eight common understory bird species that we examined over a single breeding season were significantly lower in fragmented than in continuous forest, with the odds of nest failure for these seven species ranging from 1.9 to 196.8 times higher in fragmented than continuous forest. Cup-shaped nests were particularly vulnerable in fragments. We then examined over six breeding seasons and 14 study sites in a multivariable survival analysis the influence of landscape structure and nest location on daily nest survival for 13 common species representing 1,272 nests and four nest types (plate, cup, dome, and pouch). Across species and nest types, area, distance of nest to edge, and nest height had a dominant influence on daily nest survival, with area being positively related to nest survival and distance of nest to edge and nest height being both positively and negatively associated with daily nest survival. Our results indicate that multiple environmental factors contribute to reduce nest survival within a tropical understory bird community in a fragmented landscape and that maintaining large continuous forest is important for enhancing nest survival for Afrotropical understory birds. PMID:21709237

  7. A pictorial key to the species of the Aedes (Zavortinkius) in the Afrotropical Region (Diptera: Culicidae).

    PubMed

    Huang, Yiau-Min; Rueda, Leopoldo M

    2015-10-06

    Six species of the subgenus Zavortinkius of Aedes Meigen in the Afrotropical Region are treated in a pictorial key based on diagnostic morphological features. Images of the diagnostic morphological structures of the adult thorax and leg are included.

  8. Where do species' geographic ranges stop and why? Landscape impermeability and the Afrotropical avifauna.

    PubMed

    McInnes, Lynsey; Purvis, Andy; Orme, C David L

    2009-09-01

    Although understanding large-scale spatial variation in species' distributions is a major goal in macroecology, relatively little attention has been paid to the factors limiting species' ranges. An understanding of these factors may improve predictions of species' movements in response to global change. We present a measure of landscape impermeability, defined as the proportion of resident species whose ranges end in an area. We quantify and map impermeability for Afrotropical birds and use multi-model inference to assess support for a wide suite of hypotheses about its potential environmental correlates. Non-spatial analyses emphasize the importance of broad-scale environmental patterns of energy availability and habitat heterogeneity in limiting species' distributions. Conversely, spatial analyses focus attention on small-scale factors of habitat and topographic complexity. These results hold even when only species from the top quartile of range sizes are assessed. All our analyses highlight that range edges are concentrated in heterogeneous habitats. Global change is expected to alter the nature and distribution of such habitats, necessitating range movement by many resident species. Therefore, impermeability provides a simple measure for identifying regions, where continuing global change and human encroachment are likely to cause profound changes in regional diversity patterns.

  9. Where do species' geographic ranges stop and why? Landscape impermeability and the Afrotropical avifauna

    PubMed Central

    McInnes, Lynsey; Purvis, Andy; Orme, C. David L.

    2009-01-01

    Although understanding large-scale spatial variation in species' distributions is a major goal in macroecology, relatively little attention has been paid to the factors limiting species' ranges. An understanding of these factors may improve predictions of species' movements in response to global change. We present a measure of landscape impermeability, defined as the proportion of resident species whose ranges end in an area. We quantify and map impermeability for Afrotropical birds and use multi-model inference to assess support for a wide suite of hypotheses about its potential environmental correlates. Non-spatial analyses emphasize the importance of broad-scale environmental patterns of energy availability and habitat heterogeneity in limiting species' distributions. Conversely, spatial analyses focus attention on small-scale factors of habitat and topographic complexity. These results hold even when only species from the top quartile of range sizes are assessed. All our analyses highlight that range edges are concentrated in heterogeneous habitats. Global change is expected to alter the nature and distribution of such habitats, necessitating range movement by many resident species. Therefore, impermeability provides a simple measure for identifying regions, where continuing global change and human encroachment are likely to cause profound changes in regional diversity patterns. PMID:19515666

  10. A revision of the continental species of Copa Simon, 1885 (Araneae, Corinnidae) in the Afrotropical Region

    PubMed Central

    Haddad, Charles Richard

    2013-01-01

    Abstract The cryptic ground-dwelling castianeirine genus Copa Simon, 1885 (Araneae: Corinnidae) is revised in the continental Afrotropical Region. The type species of the genus, Copa flavoplumosa Simon, 1885, is redescribed and considered a senior synonym of Copa benina Strand, 1916 syn. n. and Copa benina nigra Lessert, 1933 syn. n. It is widespread throughout the Afrotropical Region but has not been introduced to any of the associated regional islands. A new species, Copa kei sp. n., is described from South Africa. Copa agelenina Simon, 1910, originally described from a subadult female from southern Botswana, is considered a nomen dubium. Copa flavoplumosa is a characteristic species of leaf litter spider assemblages and is particularly prevalent in savanna habitats on the continent, but also occurs in various forest types, grasslands, fynbos and semi-arid Nama Karoo habitats. In contrast, Copa kei sp. n. has only been recorded from Afromontane and coastal forests in south-eastern South Africa. PMID:23794814

  11. The effects of long-term captivity on the metabolic parameters of a small Afrotropical bird.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Lindy J; Brown, Mark; Downs, Colleen T

    2015-04-01

    The few within-species studies on the effects of long-term captivity on avian physiological variables have small samples sizes and contradictory results. Nevertheless, many physiological studies make use of long-term captive birds, assuming the results will be applicable to wild populations. Here we investigated the effects of long-term captivity on a variety of physiological measurements in a relatively small (~12 g) southern African endemic bird, the Cape white-eye (Zosterops virens). Whole animal basal metabolic rate (BMR) and body mass (Mb) were influenced more by long-term captivity than by season, while mass-specific BMR, standard and basal whole animal and mass-specific evaporative water loss (EWL), and respiratory quotient (RQ), were all affected primarily by season, with long-term captivity having less of an effect. We therefore caution that whole animal BMR and Mb of long-term captive birds should not be used as representative of wild populations, and that the origin of study birds should be considered when comparing EWL and RQ of wild and long-term captive birds.

  12. Five new species of the Afrotropical dark sac spider genus Messapus Simon, 1898 (Araneae: Corinnidae).

    PubMed

    Haddad, Charles R; Mbo, Zingisile

    2015-12-11

    The Afrotropical dark sac spider genus Messapus Simon, 1898 (Corinnidae: Corinninae) currently only comprises two described species, the type species M. martini Simon, 1898 and M. natalis (Pocock, 1898), which have both recently been redescribed. The leg and setal morphology of Messapus is studied using scanning electron microscopy for the first time, for M. martini and M. tigris sp. n., and additional characters are provided to supplement a recent generic description. Five new species are described in the current paper: M. megae sp. n. (♂ ♀, from Zimbabwe), M. meridionalis sp. n. (♀, from South Africa), M. seiugatus sp. n. (♀, from Guinea), M. tigris sp. n. (♀, from Botswana and Namibia), and M. tropicus sp. n. (♂ ♀, from Democratic Republic of the Congo). All five species are arboreal spiders occurring on bark, lower foliage strata and the canopies of forest and savannah trees. An identification key to the seven species of the genus is provided.

  13. Descriptions of two new species of Afrotropical Psychodidae (Diptera).

    PubMed

    Ježek, Jan; Oboňa, Jozef

    2016-01-01

    Two new species of moth flies (Diptera: Psychodidae: Psychodinae) are described and illustrated on the basis of male morphological characters. Neoarisemus nyahururuensis sp. nov. was collected in the vicinity of Thomson's Falls (Nyahururu) in Kenya and Tonnoiriella veronikae sp. nov. in Toamasina province, Madagascar, Analamazaotra 1.4 km SSW Andasibe vill. (Périnet). PMID:27470871

  14. Abundance-area relationships in bird assemblages along an Afrotropical elevational gradient: space limitation in montane forest selects for higher population densities.

    PubMed

    Ferenc, Michal; Fjeldså, Jon; Sedláček, Ondřej; Motombi, Francis Njie; Djomo Nana, Eric; Mudrová, Karolína; Hořák, David

    2016-05-01

    The usual positive inter-specific relationship between range size and abundance of local populations can have notable exceptions in Afrotropical montane areas, where range-restricted bird species are unusually abundant. We tested how the area occupied locally by passerines and their geographic range size relate to local abundances along a tropical elevational gradient of Mt Cameroon, West-Central Africa. Data on bird assemblages were collected at six forested elevations (350, 650, 1100, 1500, 1850 m, 2200 m a.s.l.) using a standardised point count at 16 locations per elevation. Elevational ranges of birds were compiled from published sources and their geographic range sizes were determined as the occupancy of 1° x 1° grid cells. The observed relationship between local abundance and geographic range size within the entire passerine assemblage on Mt Cameroon disagrees with the most frequently reported positive pattern. However, the patterns differ among elevations, with positive trends of the abundance-range size relationship in lowland changing to negative trends towards higher elevations. Interestingly, the total assemblage abundances do not differ much among elevations and population size estimates of species occupying different parts of the gradient remain relatively constant. These patterns are caused by relatively high abundances of montane species, which might be a result of long-term ecological specialization and/or competitive release in species-poor montane locations and possibly facilitated by an extinction filter. Our data suggest that montane species' abilities to maintain dense populations might compensate for less area available near mountain tops and help these populations to circumvent extinction. PMID:26801494

  15. A new species of Pseudoparaclius Grichanov (Diptera: Dolichopodidae) from Udzungwa Mountains National Park, Tanzania, and a key to Afrotropical species.

    PubMed

    Kaae, Mathias Emil; Grichanov, Igor; Pape, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    Pseudoparaclius udzungwa sp. nov. is described from Udzungwa Mountains National Park, Tanzania, and a key to all known Afrotropical species of Pseudoparaclius Grichanov is provided. Pseudoparaclius udzungwa is morphologically very similar to P. sanjensis (Grichanov) but has a modified male fore tarsus with laterally compressed tarsomeres 4-5, an epandrium with slightly shorter marginal teeth distiventrally, a blunt-tipped sclerotized part of the hypandrium, and an almost straight phallus. Males of P. udzungwa and P. sanjensis share a characteristic, oval, cup-shaped cercus not seen in any other known species of Pseudoparaclius. PMID:26624033

  16. Movement ecology of five Afrotropical waterfowl species from Malawi, Mali and Nigeria

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Takekawa, John Y.; Heath, Shane R.; Iverson, S.R.L.; Gaidet, Nicolas; Cappelle, Julien; Dodman, Tim; Hagemeijer, Ward; Eldridge, William D.; Petrie, Scott A.; Yarris, Gregory S.; Manu, Shiiwua; Olsen, Glenn H.; Prosser, Diann J.; Spragens, Kyle A; Douglas, David C.; Newman, Scott H.

    2015-01-01

    Habitat availability for Afrotropical waterbirds is highly dynamic with unpredictable rainfall patterns and ephemeral wetlands resulting in diverse movement strategies among different species. Movement strategies among waterfowl encompass resident, regional and intercontinental migrants, but little quantitative information exists on their specific movement patterns. We studied the movement ecology of five Afrotropical waterfowl species marked with satellite transmitters in Malawi, Mali and Nigeria. Resident species, including White-faced Whistling Ducks Dendrocygna viduata, Fulvous Whistling Ducks Dendrocygna bicolor and Spur-winged Geese Plectropterus gambensis, remained sedentary during the rainy season and only flew limited distances during other months. In contrast, Knob-billed Ducks Sarkidiornis melanotos made short regional movements >50 km in all months and showed little site fidelity to previously used habitats in subsequent years. Garganey Anas quequedula followed an intercontinental strategy and made long-distance jumps across the Sahara and Mediterranean to their Eurasian breeding grounds. Most species flew farthest during the dry season, as mean daily movements varied from 1.5 to 14.2 km and was greatest in the winter months (January-March). Total distance moved varied from 9.5 km for White-faced Whistling Ducks (October-December) to 45.6 km for Knob-billed Ducks (April-June). Nomadic behaviour by Knob-billed Ducks was evidenced by long exploratory flights, but small mean daily movements suggested that they were relying on previous experience. Improving our understanding of these movement strategies increases our ability to assess connectivity of wetland resources that support waterfowl throughout their annual cycle and focuses conservation efforts on their most important habitats.

  17. The Tetramorium tortuosum species group (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Myrmicinae) revisited - taxonomic revision of the Afrotropical T. capillosum species complex

    PubMed Central

    Garcia, Francisco Hita; Fisher, Brian L.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract In this study we revise the taxonomy of the Tetramorium tortuosum species group members encountered in the Afrotropical region, which we have placed in its own subgroup: the Tetramorium capillosum species complex. We re-describe the two previously known species Tetramorium capillosum Bolton and Tetramorium tabarum Bolton, and describe the new species Tetramorium hecate sp. n. The geographic distribution of the three species appears to be restricted to the equatorial rainforests of Central Africa. We provide a diagnosis of the Tetramorium capillosum species complex, an illustrated identification key to species level, and worker-based species descriptions, which include diagnoses, discussions, high-quality montage images, and distribution maps. Furthermore, we discuss biogeography and composition of the globally distributed Tetramorium tortuosum group. PMID:23794889

  18. Review of Afrotropical species of Goetheana Girault (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae), with description of a new species.

    PubMed

    Gumovsky, Alex

    2016-01-01

    Three species of Goetheana Girault (Hymenoptera: Eulophidae, Entedoninae) are recorded from the Afrotropical biogeographic realm: G. shakespearei Girault (cosmopolitan), G. incerta Annecke (Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Uganda, Senegal) and G. kobzari Gumovsky sp. n. (South Africa, Uganda, Central African Republic). Goetheana incerta is re-described based on its type series, which is discussed. Males of G. shakespearei and G. incerta are easily separated by antennal scape structure, but females barely differ in morphology. New geographical records and a discussion of morphology of Goetheana are also provided. PMID:27515634

  19. Revision of the Afrotropical genus Fernandea Melichar, 1912 (Hemiptera: Fulgoromorpha: Dictyopharidae), with description of a new species from Equatorial Guinea.

    PubMed

    Song, Zhi-Shun; Malenovský, Igor; Liang, Ai-Ping

    2016-01-01

    The Afrotropical planthopper genus Fernandea Melichar, 1912 (Hemiptera: Fulgoromorpha: Dictyopharidae: Dictyopharinae: Orthopagini) is revised to include two species: F. conradti Melichar, 1912 (the type species), with material studied from Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea (Bioko island) and Togo, and F. latifemorata sp. nov., described as new from mainland Equatorial Guinea. A lectotype is designated and a redescription is provided for F. conradti together with habitus photographs and detailed illustrations of the male and female terminalia which are published for the first time. PMID:27470788

  20. Afrotropical Cynipoidea (Hymenoptera)

    PubMed Central

    van Noort, Simon; Buffington, Matthew L.; Forshage, Mattias

    2015-01-01

    Abstract The Afrotropical Cynipoidea are represented by 306 described species and 54 genera in four families: Cynipidae, Figitidae, Liopteridae and Ibaliidae, the latter represented by a single introduced species. Seven of these genera are only represented by undescribed species in the region. Seven new genus-level synonymies, one genus resurrected from synonymy, 54 new combinations, one combination reinstated, and one new replacement name are presented. We provide identification keys to the families, subfamilies and genera of cynipoid wasps occurring in the Afrotropical region (Africa south of the Sahara, including Madagascar and southern Arabian Peninsula). Online interactive Lucid Phoenix and Lucid matrix keys are available at: http://www.waspweb.org/Cynipoidea/Keys/index.htm. An overview of the biology and checklists of species for each genus are provided. This paper constitutes the first contributory chapter to the book on Afrotropical Hymenoptera. PMID:25878545

  1. Taxonomy of the ant genus Proceratium Roger (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) in the Afrotropical region with a revision of the P. arnoldi clade and description of four new species

    PubMed Central

    Hita Garcia, Francisco; Hawkes, Peter G.; Alpert, Gary D.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The taxonomy of the genus Proceratium Roger is updated for the Afrotropical region. We give an overview of the genus in the region, provide an illustrated identification key to the three clades (Proceratium arnoldi, Proceratium stictum and Proceratium toschii clades) and revise the Proceratium arnoldi clade. Four new species from the Proceratium arnoldi clade are described as new: Proceratium sokoke sp. n. from Kenya, Proceratium carri sp. n. from Mozambique, and Proceratium nilo sp. n. and Proceratium sali sp. n. from Tanzania. In order to integrate the new species into the existing taxonomic system we present an illustrated identification key to distinguish the seven Afrotropical species of the Proceratium arnoldi clade. In addition, we provide accounts for all members of the Proceratium arnoldi clade including detailed descriptions, diagnoses, taxonomic discussions, distribution data and high quality montage images. PMID:25349516

  2. Taxonomy of the ant genus Proceratium Roger (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) in the Afrotropical region with a revision of the P.arnoldi clade and description of four new species.

    PubMed

    Hita Garcia, Francisco; Hawkes, Peter G; Alpert, Gary D

    2014-01-01

    The taxonomy of the genus Proceratium Roger is updated for the Afrotropical region. We give an overview of the genus in the region, provide an illustrated identification key to the three clades (Proceratiumarnoldi, Proceratiumstictum and Proceratiumtoschii clades) and revise the Proceratiumarnoldi clade. Four new species from the Proceratiumarnoldi clade are described as new: Proceratiumsokoke sp. n. from Kenya, Proceratiumcarri sp. n. from Mozambique, and Proceratiumnilo sp. n. and Proceratiumsali sp. n. from Tanzania. In order to integrate the new species into the existing taxonomic system we present an illustrated identification key to distinguish the seven Afrotropical species of the Proceratiumarnoldi clade. In addition, we provide accounts for all members of the Proceratiumarnoldi clade including detailed descriptions, diagnoses, taxonomic discussions, distribution data and high quality montage images. PMID:25349516

  3. Estimating length of avian incubation and nestling stages in afrotropical forest birds from interval-censored nest records

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stanley, T.R.; Newmark, W.D.

    2010-01-01

    In the East Usambara Mountains in northeast Tanzania, research on the effects of forest fragmentation and disturbance on nest survival in understory birds resulted in the accumulation of 1,002 nest records between 2003 and 2008 for 8 poorly studied species. Because information on the length of the incubation and nestling stages in these species is nonexistent or sparse, our objectives in this study were (1) to estimate the length of the incubation and nestling stage and (2) to compute nest survival using these estimates in combination with calculated daily survival probability. Because our data were interval censored, we developed and applied two new statistical methods to estimate stage length. In the 8 species studied, the incubation stage lasted 9.6-21.8 days and the nestling stage 13.9-21.2 days. Combining these results with estimates of daily survival probability, we found that nest survival ranged from 6.0% to 12.5%. We conclude that our methodology for estimating stage lengths from interval-censored nest records is a reasonable and practical approach in the presence of interval-censored data. ?? 2010 The American Ornithologists' Union.

  4. Afrotropical flower flies (Diptera: Syrphidae). A new genus and species from Kenya, with a review of the melanostomine group of genera.

    PubMed

    Thompson, F Christian; Skevington, Jeffrey H

    2014-01-01

    A new genus and species of flower flies (Diptera: Syrphidae: Syrphinae: Syrphini) are described from central Africa (Kenya & Uganda), Afrostoma quadripunctatum. A key to the Afrotropical genera of the subfamily Syrphinae is given. A review of the melanostomine [Bacchini] genera and subgenera is provided along with a key to them. Phylogenetic placement of Afrostoma is included based on mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) data.

  5. Revision of the Afrotropical Phaeogenini (Ichneumonidae, Ichneumoninae), with description of a new genus and twelve new species

    PubMed Central

    Rousse, Pascal; van Noort, Simon; Diller, E.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract We revise the 10 genera and 23 species of the tribe Phaeogenini (Ichneumonidae: Ichneumoninae) known to occur in the Afrotropical region. We describe the following 13 new taxa: Kibalus Rousse, van Noort & Diller, gen. n.; K. toro Rousse, van Noort & Diller, sp. n.; K. mubfs Rousse & van Noort, sp. n.; Arearia oxymoron Rousse & van Noort, sp. n.; Chauvinia nyanga Rousse & van Noort, sp. n.; Dicaelotus asantesana Rousse & van Noort, sp. n.; D. hoerikwaggoensis Rousse & van Noort, sp. n.; D. tablemountainensis Rousse & van Noort, sp. n.; Heterischnus mfongosi Rousse & van Noort, sp. n.; H. mkomazi Rousse & van Noort, sp. n.; Lusius flummox Rousse & van Noort, sp. n.; Tycherus amatola Rousse & van Noort, sp. n.; and T. nardousberg Rousse & van Noort, sp. n. New distribution records: Heterischnus africanus (Heinrich, 1936) from South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda; H. krausi Schönitzer, 1999 from Rwanda; Lusius tenuissimus (Heinrich, 1938) from Democratic Republic of Congo, Malawi, Nigeria, South Africa, and Zimbabwe. A doubtful record of Aethecerus foveolatus Gregor, 1940 from Sao Tome is additionaly reported in the appendix. We provide illustrated diagnoses and identification notes. Online interactive dichotomous and matrix Lucid keys to genera and species are available at http://www.waspweb.org. PMID:24294101

  6. Parasite prevalence corresponds to host life history in a diverse assemblage of afrotropical birds and haemosporidian parasites.

    PubMed

    Lutz, Holly L; Hochachka, Wesley M; Engel, Joshua I; Bell, Jeffrey A; Tkach, Vasyl V; Bates, John M; Hackett, Shannon J; Weckstein, Jason D

    2015-01-01

    Avian host life history traits have been hypothesized to predict rates of infection by haemosporidian parasites. Using molecular techniques, we tested this hypothesis for parasites from three haemosporidian genera (Plasmodium, Haemoproteus, and Leucocytozoon) collected from a diverse sampling of birds in northern Malawi. We found that host life history traits were significantly associated with parasitism rates by all three parasite genera. Nest type and nest location predicted infection probability for all three parasite genera, whereas flocking behavior is an important predictor of Plasmodium and Haemoproteus infection and habitat is an important predictor of Leucocytozoon infection. Parasite prevalence was 79.1% across all individuals sampled, higher than that reported for comparable studies from any other region of the world. Parasite diversity was also exceptionally high, with 248 parasite cytochrome b lineages identified from 152 host species. A large proportion of Plasmodium, Haemoproteus, and Leucocytozoon parasite DNA sequences identified in this study represent new, previously undocumented lineages (n = 201; 81% of total identified) based on BLAST queries against the avian malaria database, MalAvi. PMID:25853491

  7. Parasite prevalence corresponds to host life history in a diverse assemblage of afrotropical birds and haemosporidian parasites.

    PubMed

    Lutz, Holly L; Hochachka, Wesley M; Engel, Joshua I; Bell, Jeffrey A; Tkach, Vasyl V; Bates, John M; Hackett, Shannon J; Weckstein, Jason D

    2015-01-01

    Avian host life history traits have been hypothesized to predict rates of infection by haemosporidian parasites. Using molecular techniques, we tested this hypothesis for parasites from three haemosporidian genera (Plasmodium, Haemoproteus, and Leucocytozoon) collected from a diverse sampling of birds in northern Malawi. We found that host life history traits were significantly associated with parasitism rates by all three parasite genera. Nest type and nest location predicted infection probability for all three parasite genera, whereas flocking behavior is an important predictor of Plasmodium and Haemoproteus infection and habitat is an important predictor of Leucocytozoon infection. Parasite prevalence was 79.1% across all individuals sampled, higher than that reported for comparable studies from any other region of the world. Parasite diversity was also exceptionally high, with 248 parasite cytochrome b lineages identified from 152 host species. A large proportion of Plasmodium, Haemoproteus, and Leucocytozoon parasite DNA sequences identified in this study represent new, previously undocumented lineages (n = 201; 81% of total identified) based on BLAST queries against the avian malaria database, MalAvi.

  8. Parasite Prevalence Corresponds to Host Life History in a Diverse Assemblage of Afrotropical Birds and Haemosporidian Parasites

    PubMed Central

    Lutz, Holly L.; Hochachka, Wesley M.; Engel, Joshua I.; Bell, Jeffrey A.; Tkach, Vasyl V.; Bates, John M.; Hackett, Shannon J.; Weckstein, Jason D.

    2015-01-01

    Avian host life history traits have been hypothesized to predict rates of infection by haemosporidian parasites. Using molecular techniques, we tested this hypothesis for parasites from three haemosporidian genera (Plasmodium, Haemoproteus, and Leucocytozoon) collected from a diverse sampling of birds in northern Malawi. We found that host life history traits were significantly associated with parasitism rates by all three parasite genera. Nest type and nest location predicted infection probability for all three parasite genera, whereas flocking behavior is an important predictor of Plasmodium and Haemoproteus infection and habitat is an important predictor of Leucocytozoon infection. Parasite prevalence was 79.1% across all individuals sampled, higher than that reported for comparable studies from any other region of the world. Parasite diversity was also exceptionally high, with 248 parasite cytochrome b lineages identified from 152 host species. A large proportion of Plasmodium, Haemoproteus, and Leucocytozoon parasite DNA sequences identified in this study represent new, previously undocumented lineages (n = 201; 81% of total identified) based on BLAST queries against the avian malaria database, MalAvi. PMID:25853491

  9. A revision of Afrotropical Quasimodo flies (Diptera: Schizophora; Curtonotidae). Part IV—the continental Afrotropical species of Curtonotum Macquart, with descriptions of thirteen new species and a combined phylogenetic analysis of the Curtonotidae.

    PubMed

    Kirk-Spriggs, Ashley H; Wiegmann, Brian M

    2013-01-01

    specific name, as Parapsinota sublineata (Duda, 1939). The continental Afrotropical fauna of the genus Curtonotum Macquart, 1844 is revised and a diagnosis of the genus is provided. Known biology, behaviour and published information on immature stages of the genus are briefly reviewed. Type material of 12 of the 13 named species (C. angolense Tsacas, C. campsiphallum Tsacas, C. cuthbertsoni Duda, C. herrero Tsacas, C. pauliani Tsacas, C. platyphallum Tsacas, C. quinquevittatum Curran, C. saheliense Tsacas, C. sao Tsacas, C. simile Tsacas, C. striatifrons Malloch and C. tigrinum Séguy), was studied and errors in previous interpretations and designation of type specimens are resolved. Curtonotum pauliani is the only species occurring on both the continental African mainland and Madagascar. The type spec-imen of C. maculiventris (Enderlein) is lost and a neotype is here designated. One species synonymy is proposed: C. tigrinum Séguy, 1933 = C. maculiventris (Enderlein, 1917), syn. n. Additional material of the aforementioned species is noted, substantially increasing their known distributions. Thirteen species are described as new, namely: C. bicuspis Kirk- Spriggs, sp. n., C. cimbebas Kirk-Spriggs, sp. n., C. constance Kirk-Spriggs, sp. n., C. freidberg Kirk-Spriggs, sp. n., C. gonzo Kirk-Spriggs, sp. n., C. hay Kirk-Spriggs, sp. n., C. litoralis Kirk-Spriggs, sp. n., C. marriott Kirk-Spriggs, sp. n., C. mcgregor Kirk-Spriggs, sp. n., C. moffatt Kirk-Spriggs, sp. n., C. tsacas Kirk-Spriggs, sp. n., C. uncinatum Kirk- Spriggs, sp. n. and C. unicuspis Kirk-Spriggs, sp. n. The head and thorax, frons, wing, fifth sternite and hypandrium of the male of the 25 named species are illustrated for the first time, as well as the highly diagnostic male phallus, from both the right and left sides laterally. A key to species based on male characters is provided, and species distributions are mapped and interpreted according to major vegetation types, topography and humidity zones. The

  10. Monograph of the Afrotropical species of Scelio Latreille (Hymenoptera, Platygastridae), egg parasitoids of acridid grasshoppers (Orthoptera, Acrididae)

    PubMed Central

    Yoder, Matthew J.; Valerio, Alejandro A.; Polaszek, Andrew; van Noort, Simon; Masner, Lubomír; Johnson, Norman F.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The genus Scelio is a cosmopolitan and speciose group of solitary parasitoids of the eggs of short-horned grasshoppers (Orthoptera: Acrididae). A number of these hosts are important pests, including plague locusts of the genus Schistocerca. Species of Scelio are recognized as potentially important biological control agents, but this possibility has yet to be fully realized, in part because the species-level taxonomy is still incompletely developed. The species of the pulchripennis group have been recently revised. As a continuation of this effort, here we revise the Afrotropical species of Scelio, excluding the pulchripennis species group. Sixty two (62) species are treated, 48 of which are new. Species are classified into the following species groups: ernstii (12 species, 9 new), howardi (23 species, 19 new), ipomeae (6 species, 5 new), irwini (4 species, 3 new), simoni (3 new species) and walkeri (12 species, 9 new). Keys to species groups and to the species within each group are provided. New species described are: S. albatus Yoder, sp. n., S. aphares Yoder, sp. n., S. apospastos Yoder, sp. n., S. ardelio Yoder, sp. n., S. aurantium Yoder, sp. n., S. balo Valerio & Yoder, sp. n., S. bayanga Yoder, sp. n., S. bubulo Yoder, sp. n., S. cano Yoder, sp. n., S. clypeatus Yoder, sp. n., S. concavus Yoder, sp. n., S. copelandi Yoder, sp. n., S. crepo Yoder, sp. n., S. destico Yoder, sp. n., S. dupondi Yoder, sp. n., S. effervesco Yoder, sp. n., S. erugatus Yoder, sp. n., S. exophthalmus Yoder, sp. n., S. fremo Valerio & Yoder, sp. n., S. gemo Yoder, sp. n., S. grunnio Yoder, sp. n., S. harinhalai Yoder, sp. n., S. igland Yoder, sp. n., S. impostor Yoder, sp. n., S. irwini Yoder, sp. n., S. janseni Yoder, sp. n., S. latro Yoder, sp. n., S. memorabilis Yoder, sp. n., S. modulus Yoder, sp. n., S. mutio Yoder, sp. n., S. ntchisii Yoder, sp. n., S. parkeri Yoder, sp. n., S. phaeoprora Yoder, sp. n., S. pilosilatus Yoder, sp. n., S. pipilo Yoder, sp. n., S

  11. Revision of the Afrotropical Oberthuerellinae (Cynipoidea, Liopteridae)

    PubMed Central

    Buffington, Matthew L.; van Noort, Simon

    2012-01-01

    Abstract The Afrotropical Oberthuerellinae are revised, and new dichotomous and multi-entry keys to the species of Oberthuerella, Tessmannella, and Xenocynips are provided. All previously described species in these genera are redescribed; descriptions are augmented by color images of the holotype for each species. The following 11 species are described as new: Oberthuerella cyclopia Buffington & van Noort; Oberthuerella eschara Buffington & van Noort; Oberthuerella kibalensis van Noort & Buffington; Oberthuerella pardolatus Buffington & van Noort; Oberthuerella sharkeyi Buffington & van Noort; Oberthuerella simba Buffington & van Noort; Tessmannella copelandi Buffington & van Noort; Tessmannella kiplingi Buffington & van Noort; Tessmannella roberti Buffington & van Noort; Xenocynips rhothion Buffington & van Noort; and Xenocynips ronquisti Buffington & van Noort. We provide identification keys to the genera and species occurring in the Afrotropical region. Online dichotomous and interactive Lucid keys to genera and species are available at http://www.waspweb.org/Cynipoidea/Keys/index.htm PMID:22773909

  12. Post-fragmentation population structure in a cooperative breeding Afrotropical cloud forest bird: emergence of a source-sink population network.

    PubMed

    Husemann, M; Cousseau, L; Callens, T; Matthysen, E; Vangestel, C; Hallmann, C; Lens, L

    2015-03-01

    The impact of demographic parameters on the genetic population structure and viability of organisms is a long-standing issue in the study of fragmented populations. Demographic and genetic tools are now readily available to estimate census and effective population sizes and migration and gene flow rates with increasing precision. Here we analysed the demography and genetic population structure over a recent 15-year time span in five remnant populations of Cabanis's greenbul (Phyllastrephus cabanisi), a cooperative breeding bird in a severely fragmented cloud forest habitat. Contrary to our expectation, genetic admixture and effective population sizes slightly increased, rather than decreased between our two sampling periods. In spite of small effective population sizes in tiny forest remnants, none of the populations showed evidence of a recent population bottleneck. Approximate Bayesian modelling, however, suggested that differentiation of the populations coincided at least partially with an episode of habitat fragmentation. The ratio of meta-Ne to meta-Nc was relatively low for birds, which is expected for cooperative breeding species, while Ne /Nc ratios strongly varied among local populations. While the overall trend of increasing population sizes and genetic admixture may suggest that Cabanis's greenbuls increasingly cope with fragmentation, the time period over which these trends were documented is rather short relative to the average longevity of tropical species. Furthermore, the critically low Nc in the small forest remnants keep the species prone to demographic and environmental stochasticity, and it remains open if, and to what extent, its cooperative breeding behaviour helps to buffer such effects.

  13. Bird Populations in Fernbank Forest: MIGRANT SPECIES.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schmalz, Georgann

    1991-01-01

    This article discusses fragmented forests in general and provides arrival/departure data about migratory birds collected at Fernbank Forest which is located within metropolitan Atlanta. The data indicate that population trends for selected species have not changed over 19 years of migration recordings within this small, but important, fragmented…

  14. All about Owls: Studying Owls, State Birds, and Endangered Species.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rivard, Leonard P.

    1991-01-01

    Activities are included that acquaint students with the parts of birds and the structure of feathers; that identify the prey of owls by opening owl pellets; working with information about threatened and endangered species of birds; and follow-up activities for bird study. A list of state and provincial birds of the United States and Canada and…

  15. Ultraviolet plumage reflectance distinguishes sibling bird species.

    PubMed

    Bleiweiss, Robert

    2004-11-23

    Realistic studies of plumage color need to consider that many birds can see near-UV light, which normal humans cannot perceive. Although previous investigations have revealed that UV-based plumage reflectance is an important component of various intraspecific social signals, the contribution of UV signals to inter-specific divergence and speciation in birds remains largely unexplored. I describe an avian example of an interspecific phenomenon in which related sympatric species that appear similar to humans (sibling species) differ dramatically in the UV. Both UV video images and physical reflectance spectra indicate that the dorsal plumage of the tanager Anisognathus notabilis has a strong UV-limited reflectance band that readily distinguishes this species from its sibling congener Anisognathus flavinuchus. The main human-visible distinction between A. notabilis (olive back) and coexisting A. flavinuchus (black back) also occurs among different geographic populations of A. flavinuchus. Notably, however, olive- and black-backed taxa interbreed (differentiated populations of A. flavinuchus) unless the additional UV distinction is present (A. notabilis vs. A. flavinuchus). Thus, UV-based reflectance can be an essential component of plumage divergence that relates to reproductive isolation, a key attribute of biological species.

  16. Estimating species diversity from bird atlas data

    SciTech Connect

    Campbell, K.

    1992-12-01

    Observations for a breeding bird atlas for Los Alamos (NM) county were collected over a six-year period by a number of different observers and with variable number and duration of visits to different parts of the county. The resulting data set, while thorough by the standards of such atlases, poses many problems for statistical analyses proposed after data gathering was complete. This paper examines some statistical models that might usefully supplement the data and make possible inferences about such questions as the impact of land use -- residential, Laboratory, wilderness -- on the use of local habitats by approximately 100 species known to breed in the county.

  17. Estimating species diversity from bird atlas data

    SciTech Connect

    Campbell, K.

    1992-01-01

    Observations for a breeding bird atlas for Los Alamos (NM) county were collected over a six-year period by a number of different observers and with variable number and duration of visits to different parts of the county. The resulting data set, while thorough by the standards of such atlases, poses many problems for statistical analyses proposed after data gathering was complete. This paper examines some statistical models that might usefully supplement the data and make possible inferences about such questions as the impact of land use -- residential, Laboratory, wilderness -- on the use of local habitats by approximately 100 species known to breed in the county.

  18. The Afrotropical Miomantis caffra Saussure 1871 and Miomantis paykullii Stal 1871: first records of alien mantid species in Portugal and Europe, with an updated checklist of Mantodea in Portugal (Insecta: Mantodea)

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The recent growing interest on the Mantodea fauna of southern Europe and Portugal in particular, has enabled the discovery of two geographically separated populations of hitherto unknown species in Europe. Analysis of specimens shows that they belong to two Afrotropical mantids: Miomantis caffra Saussure, 1871 and Miomantis paykullii Stal, 1871, thus raising the number of known species in Europe to 39 and in Portugal to 11. While these are remarkable findings, they also represent the first alien mantis species recorded from this continent. As yet, these species appear to be confined to artificial humanised gardened areas but call for more attention to the problem of biological invasions and the need for better bio-security measures for the conservation of natural ecosystems. In the absence of recent revisionary work on the Mantodea of Portugal and given the need to provide an accessible identification tool, both a checklist and a key to species are provided for all species in the country. PMID:25425938

  19. Bird Species Diversity in the Padawan Limestone Area, Sarawak

    PubMed Central

    Mansor, Mohammad Saiful; Sah, Shahrul Anuar Mohd; Koon, Lim Chan; Rahman, Mustafa Abdul

    2011-01-01

    Bird surveys were conducted in the Padawan Limestone Area for seven days at each of two study sites, Giam and Danu, from August to December 2008. The purpose of the study was to compare the area’s bird species richness and abundance of bird species in other limestone areas and in other forest types. The study also compared the species richness and relative abundance of birds in undisturbed and disturbed areas at both study sites. Twenty mist nets were deployed for 12 hours daily. During this study period, direct observations of birds were also made. In all, 80 species from 34 families were recorded at both sites. At Giam, 120 birds were mist-netted. These birds represented 31 species from 16 families. The direct observations at Giam recorded 13 species from 11 families. In the undisturbed area, 21 species from 13 families were mist-netted, whereas in the disturbed area, 21 species from 10 families were mist-netted. In Danu, a total of 48 birds, representing 25 species from 12 families, were mist-netted. The observations at Danu recorded 34 species from 19 families. Twelve species from 7 families were mist-netted in the undisturbed area, whereas 18 species from 11 families were mist-netted in the disturbed area. Statistical analysis showed that the species diversity index differed significantly between undisturbed and disturbed areas. PMID:24575218

  20. International Trade of CITES Listed Bird Species in China

    PubMed Central

    Li, Linlin; Jiang, Zhigang

    2014-01-01

    Commercial trade of wild birds may devastate wild bird populations. Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) controls the trade of wild species listed in its appendices to avoid these species being threatened by international trade. China used to be one of the major trading countries with significant bird trade with foreign countries; on the other hand, China is a country with unique avian fauna, many Important Bird Areas and critically endangered bird species. What is the role of the country in world wild bird trade? What kind of insights can we extract from trade records for improving future management of wild bird trade in the country? We retrieved and analyzed international trade records of the CITES listed bird species of China from 1981 to 2010 from the CITES Trade Database maintained by United Nations Environment Program and World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC). We found that: (1) International trade of live birds in China peaked during the late 1990s, then decreased to the level before the surge of trade in a few years, the trade dynamics of wild birds may be affected by governmental policy and the outbreak of avian influenza during the period. (2) Most frequently traded CITES Appendix listed birds in China were parrots, most of which were exotic species to the country. (3) Birds were mainly traded for commercial purpose. Exotic birds in trade were mainly captive-bred while the most Chinese birds traded internationally were captured from the wild. Since many bird species in international trade are threatened to extinction, China should take stricter measures on importing of wild-captured birds and should collaborate with the countries of original in the international bird trade to avoid unsustainable harvesting of wild birds. It is urgent for China to carry out population surveys on those domestic bird species once in significant international trade and to make better conservation decisions based on

  1. International trade of CITES listed bird species in China.

    PubMed

    Li, Linlin; Jiang, Zhigang

    2014-01-01

    Commercial trade of wild birds may devastate wild bird populations. Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) controls the trade of wild species listed in its appendices to avoid these species being threatened by international trade. China used to be one of the major trading countries with significant bird trade with foreign countries; on the other hand, China is a country with unique avian fauna, many Important Bird Areas and critically endangered bird species. What is the role of the country in world wild bird trade? What kind of insights can we extract from trade records for improving future management of wild bird trade in the country? We retrieved and analyzed international trade records of the CITES listed bird species of China from 1981 to 2010 from the CITES Trade Database maintained by United Nations Environment Program and World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC). We found that: (1) International trade of live birds in China peaked during the late 1990s, then decreased to the level before the surge of trade in a few years, the trade dynamics of wild birds may be affected by governmental policy and the outbreak of avian influenza during the period. (2) Most frequently traded CITES Appendix listed birds in China were parrots, most of which were exotic species to the country. (3) Birds were mainly traded for commercial purpose. Exotic birds in trade were mainly captive-bred while the most Chinese birds traded internationally were captured from the wild. Since many bird species in international trade are threatened to extinction, China should take stricter measures on importing of wild-captured birds and should collaborate with the countries of original in the international bird trade to avoid unsustainable harvesting of wild birds. It is urgent for China to carry out population surveys on those domestic bird species once in significant international trade and to make better conservation decisions based on

  2. Toxoplasmosis in three species of native and introduced Hawaiian birds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Work, T.M.; Massey, J.G.; Lindsay, D.S.; Dubey, J.P.

    2002-01-01

    Toxoplasma gondii was found in endemic Hawaiian birds, including 2 nene geese (Nesochen sandvicensis), 1 red-footed booby (Sula sula), and an introduced bird, the Erckels francolin (Francolinus erckelii). All 4 birds died of disseminated toxoplasmosis; the parasite was found in sections of many organs, and the diagnosis was confirmed by immunohistochemical staining with antia??T. gondiia??specific polyclonal antibodies. This is the first report of toxoplasmosis in these species of birds.

  3. Toxoplasmosis in three species of native and introduced Hawaiian birds.

    PubMed

    Work, Thierry M; Massey, J Gregory; Lindsay, David; Dubey, J P

    2002-10-01

    Toxoplasma gondii was found in endemic Hawaiian birds, including 2 nene geese (Nesochen sandvicensis), 1 red-footed booby (Sula sula), and an introduced bird, the Erckels francolin (Francolinus erckelii). All 4 birds died of disseminated toxoplasmosis; the parasite was found in sections of many organs, and the diagnosis was confirmed by immunohistochemical staining with anti-T. gondii-specific polyclonal antibodies. This is the first report of toxoplasmosis in these species of birds.

  4. Toxoplasmosis in three species of native and introduced Hawaiian birds.

    PubMed

    Work, Thierry M; Massey, J Gregory; Lindsay, David; Dubey, J P

    2002-10-01

    Toxoplasma gondii was found in endemic Hawaiian birds, including 2 nene geese (Nesochen sandvicensis), 1 red-footed booby (Sula sula), and an introduced bird, the Erckels francolin (Francolinus erckelii). All 4 birds died of disseminated toxoplasmosis; the parasite was found in sections of many organs, and the diagnosis was confirmed by immunohistochemical staining with anti-T. gondii-specific polyclonal antibodies. This is the first report of toxoplasmosis in these species of birds. PMID:12435157

  5. Immunogenic proteins specific to different bird species in bird fancier's lung.

    PubMed

    Rouzet, Adeline; Reboux, Gabriel; Rognon, Bénédicte; Barrera, Coralie; De Vuyst, Paul; Dalphin, Jean-Charles; Millon, Laurence; Roussel, Sandrine

    2014-01-01

    Bird fancier's lung (BFL) is a disease produced by exposure to avian proteins present in droppings, blooms, and serum of a variety of birds. Although serological test results are currently used to confirm clinical diagnosis of the disease, bird species specificity is poorly understood. This study aimed to contribute to a better understanding of the specificity of immunogenic proteins revealed from the droppings of three bird species. Sera from four patients with BFL and two controls without exposure were analyzed by Western blotting with antigens from droppings of two pigeon and budgerigar strains and two hen species. When the antigens from the droppings of the three bird species were compared, the profile of immunogenic proteins was different and there were similarities between strains of the same species. Only one 68-kD protein was common to pigeon and budgerigar droppings, while proteins of 200, 175, 140, 100, and 35 kD were detected as specific in one bird species. These results provide insight to further characterize these proteins, and to design new serological tests specific to different bird species. These tests may help to refine strategies of antigenic exclusion and also to allow a patient compensation in case of BFL of occupational origin. PMID:24786679

  6. Music for the birds: effects of auditory enrichment on captive bird species.

    PubMed

    Robbins, Lindsey; Margulis, Susan W

    2016-01-01

    With the increase of mixed species exhibits in zoos, targeting enrichment for individual species may be problematic. Often, mammals may be the primary targets of enrichment, yet other species that share their environment (such as birds) will unavoidably be exposed to the enrichment as well. The purpose of this study was to determine if (1) auditory stimuli designed for enrichment of primates influenced the behavior of captive birds in the zoo setting, and (2) if the specific type of auditory enrichment impacted bird behavior. Three different African bird species were observed at the Buffalo Zoo during exposure to natural sounds, classical music and rock music. The results revealed that the average frequency of flying in all three bird species increased with naturalistic sounds and decreased with rock music (F = 7.63, df = 3,6, P = 0.018); vocalizations for two of the three species (Superb Starlings and Mousebirds) increased (F = 18.61, df = 2,6, P = 0.0027) in response to all auditory stimuli, however one species (Lady Ross's Turacos) increased frequency of duetting only in response to rock music (X(2) = 18.5, df = 2, P < 0.0001). Auditory enrichment implemented for large mammals may influence behavior in non-target species as well, in this case leading to increased activity by birds. PMID:26749511

  7. Music for the birds: effects of auditory enrichment on captive bird species.

    PubMed

    Robbins, Lindsey; Margulis, Susan W

    2016-01-01

    With the increase of mixed species exhibits in zoos, targeting enrichment for individual species may be problematic. Often, mammals may be the primary targets of enrichment, yet other species that share their environment (such as birds) will unavoidably be exposed to the enrichment as well. The purpose of this study was to determine if (1) auditory stimuli designed for enrichment of primates influenced the behavior of captive birds in the zoo setting, and (2) if the specific type of auditory enrichment impacted bird behavior. Three different African bird species were observed at the Buffalo Zoo during exposure to natural sounds, classical music and rock music. The results revealed that the average frequency of flying in all three bird species increased with naturalistic sounds and decreased with rock music (F = 7.63, df = 3,6, P = 0.018); vocalizations for two of the three species (Superb Starlings and Mousebirds) increased (F = 18.61, df = 2,6, P = 0.0027) in response to all auditory stimuli, however one species (Lady Ross's Turacos) increased frequency of duetting only in response to rock music (X(2) = 18.5, df = 2, P < 0.0001). Auditory enrichment implemented for large mammals may influence behavior in non-target species as well, in this case leading to increased activity by birds.

  8. The species of mallophaga in wild birds in Iran.

    PubMed

    Rak, H; Anwar, M; Niak, A

    1975-01-01

    Up to date 2 species of Mallophaga have been reported from birds in Iran. Further studies in Tehran area showed that the wild birds harbour more lice. The following species of Mallophage are reported for the first time from birds in Iran. Anaticola crassicornis from Anas clypeata, Laemobothrion maximum from Falco tinnunculus Laemobothrion sp. from Aquila chrysaetos Alcedoecus annulatus from Alcedo athis, Colpocephalum pectinatum and Strigiphilus sp. from Streptopelia turtur, Amrysidea fulvomaculata from Coturnix coturnix, philopterus picae from pica pica, Philopterus ocellatus and Colpocephalum pectinatum from Athene noctua, Philopterus sp. from Turdus ruficollis, Upupicola upupae from Upupa epops, Amyrsidea hexapilosus from Phasianus colchicus, Colpocephalum sp. from Falco cherrug. PMID:1243890

  9. Regional patterns in proportion of bird species detected in the North American Breeding Bird Survey

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sauer, J.R.; Nichols, J.D.; Hines, J.E.; Boulinier, T.; Flather, C.H.; Kendall, W.L.

    2001-01-01

    Counts from the North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) underestimate species richness. We use capture-recapture methods to estimate species richness from BBS count data collected in 1996 and show that detection probabilities demonstrate clear regional patterns. Capture-recapture methods should be used to estimate species richness from count data, and failure to use estimation procedures for species richness could result in biased estimates of spatial change in species richness.

  10. A comparison of auditory brainstem responses across diving bird species

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Crowell, Sara E.; Berlin, Alicia; Carr, Catherine E; Olsen, Glenn H.; Therrien, Ronald E; Yannuzzi, Sally E; Ketten, Darlene R

    2015-01-01

    There is little biological data available for diving birds because many live in hard-to-study, remote habitats. Only one species of diving bird, the black-footed penguin (Spheniscus demersus), has been studied in respect to auditory capabilities (Wever et al., Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 63:676–680, 1969). We, therefore, measured in-air auditory threshold in ten species of diving birds, using the auditory brainstem response (ABR). The average audiogram obtained for each species followed the U-shape typical of birds and many other animals. All species tested shared a common region of the greatest sensitivity, from 1000 to 3000 Hz, although audiograms differed significantly across species. Thresholds of all duck species tested were more similar to each other than to the two non-duck species tested. The red-throated loon (Gavia stellata) and northern gannet (Morus bassanus) exhibited the highest thresholds while the lowest thresholds belonged to the duck species, specifically the lesser scaup (Aythya affinis) and ruddy duck (Oxyura jamaicensis). Vocalization parameters were also measured for each species, and showed that with the exception of the common eider (Somateria mollisima), the peak frequency, i.e., frequency at the greatest intensity, of all species' vocalizations measured here fell between 1000 and 3000 Hz, matching the bandwidth of the most sensitive hearing range.

  11. A comparison of auditory brainstem responses across diving bird species

    PubMed Central

    Crowell, Sara E.; Wells-Berlin, Alicia M.; Carr, Catherine E.; Olsen, Glenn H.; Therrien, Ronald E.; Yannuzzi, Sally E.; Ketten, Darlene R.

    2015-01-01

    There is little biological data available for diving birds because many live in hard-to-study, remote habitats. Only one species of diving bird, the black-footed penguin (Spheniscus demersus), has been studied in respect to auditory capabilities (Wever et al. 1969). We therefore measured in-air auditory threshold in ten species of diving birds, using the auditory brainstem response (ABR). The average audiogram obtained for each species followed the U-shape typical of birds and many other animals. All species tested shared a common region of greatest sensitivity, from 1000 to 3000 Hz, although audiograms differed significantly across species. Thresholds of all duck species tested were more similar to each other than to the two non-duck species tested. The red-throated loon (Gavia stellata) and northern gannet (Morus bassanus) exhibited the highest thresholds while the lowest thresholds belonged to the duck species, specifically the lesser scaup (Aythya affinis) and ruddy duck (Oxyura jamaicensis). Vocalization parameters were also measured for each species, and showed that with the exception of the common eider (Somateria mollisima), the peak frequency, i.e. frequency at the greatest intensity, of all species’ vocalizations measured here fell between 1000 and 3000 Hz, matching the bandwidth of the most sensitive hearing range. PMID:26156644

  12. DNA Barcode Detects High Genetic Structure within Neotropical Bird Species

    PubMed Central

    Tavares, Erika Sendra; Gonçalves, Priscila; Miyaki, Cristina Yumi; Baker, Allan J.

    2011-01-01

    Background Towards lower latitudes the number of recognized species is not only higher, but also phylogeographic subdivision within species is more pronounced. Moreover, new genetically isolated populations are often described in recent phylogenies of Neotropical birds suggesting that the number of species in the region is underestimated. Previous COI barcoding of Argentinean bird species showed more complex patterns of regional divergence in the Neotropical than in the North American avifauna. Methods and Findings Here we analyzed 1,431 samples from 561 different species to extend the Neotropical bird barcode survey to lower latitudes, and detected even higher geographic structure within species than reported previously. About 93% (520) of the species were identified correctly from their DNA barcodes. The remaining 41 species were not monophyletic in their COI sequences because they shared barcode sequences with closely related species (N = 21) or contained very divergent clusters suggestive of putative new species embedded within the gene tree (N = 20). Deep intraspecific divergences overlapping with among-species differences were detected in 48 species, often with samples from large geographic areas and several including multiple subspecies. This strong population genetic structure often coincided with breaks between different ecoregions or areas of endemism. Conclusions The taxonomic uncertainty associated with the high incidence of non-monophyletic species and discovery of putative species obscures studies of historical patterns of species diversification in the Neotropical region. We showed that COI barcodes are a valuable tool to indicate which taxa would benefit from more extensive taxonomic revisions with multilocus approaches. Moreover, our results support hypotheses that the megadiversity of birds in the region is associated with multiple geographic processes starting well before the Quaternary and extending to more recent geological periods

  13. Revision of the afrotropical species of Zaprionus (Diptera, Drosophilidae), with descriptions of two new species and notes on internal reproductive structures and immature stages

    PubMed Central

    Yassin, Amir; David, Jean R.

    2010-01-01

    Abstract A new classification of the subgenus Zaprionus is proposed in light of recent phylogenetic findings. The boundaries of the armatus and inermis species groups are redefined. The vittiger subgroup is upgraded to the level of a species group. The tuberculatus subgroup is transferred from the armatus to the inermis group. A new monotypic group, neglectus, is erected. Full morphological descriptions of four species belonging to the vittiger group are given: Zaprionus lachaisei sp. n. from Tanzania and Zaprionus santomensis sp. n. from São Tomé and Principé, and two cryptic species of the indianus complex, Zaprionus africanus Yassin & David and Zaprionus gabonicus Yassin & David. Three nominal species are synonymised: Zaprionus beninensis Chassagnard & Tsacas, syn. n. with Zaprionus koroleu Burla, Zaprionus simplex Chassagnard & McEvey, syn. n. with Zaprionus neglectus Collart, and Zaprionus megalorchis Chassagnard & Tsacas, syn. n. with Zaprionus ornatus Séguy. Half of the 46 species of the subgenus are available as laboratory strains and this has allowed full descriptions of the internal structure of their reproductive systems and their immature stages. PMID:21594121

  14. Kenyan endemic bird species at home in novel ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Habel, Jan Christian; Teucher, Mike; Rödder, Dennis; Bleicher, Marie-Therese; Dieckow, Claudia; Wiese, Anja; Fischer, Christina

    2016-04-01

    Riparian thickets of East Africa harbor a large number of endemic animal and plant species, but also provide important ecosystem services for the human being settling along streams. This creates a conflicting situation between nature conservation and land-use activities. Today, most of this former pristine vegetation is highly degraded and became replaced by the invasive exotic Lantana camara shrub species. In this study, we analyze the movement behavior and habitat use of a diverse range of riparian bird species and model the habitat availability of each of these species. We selected the following four riparian bird species: Bare-eyed Thrush Turdus tephronotus, Rufous Chatterer Turdoides rubiginosus, Zanzibar Sombre Greenbul Andropadus importunus insularis, and the Kenyan endemic Hinde's Babbler Turdoides hindei. We collected telemetric data of 14 individuals during a 2 months radio-tracking campaign along the Nzeeu River in southeast Kenya. We found that (1) all four species had similar home-range sizes, all geographically restricted and nearby the river; (2) all species mainly use dense thicket, in particular the invasive L. camara; (3) human settlements were avoided by the bird individuals observed; (4) the birds' movement, indicating foraging behavior, was comparatively slow within thickets, but significantly faster over open, agricultural areas; and (5) habitat suitability models underline the relevance of L. camara as suitable surrogate habitat for all understoreyed bird species, but also show that the clearance of thickets has led to a vanishing of large and interconnected thickets and thus might have negative effects on the population viability in the long run. PMID:27066236

  15. Kenyan endemic bird species at home in novel ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Habel, Jan Christian; Teucher, Mike; Rödder, Dennis; Bleicher, Marie-Therese; Dieckow, Claudia; Wiese, Anja; Fischer, Christina

    2016-04-01

    Riparian thickets of East Africa harbor a large number of endemic animal and plant species, but also provide important ecosystem services for the human being settling along streams. This creates a conflicting situation between nature conservation and land-use activities. Today, most of this former pristine vegetation is highly degraded and became replaced by the invasive exotic Lantana camara shrub species. In this study, we analyze the movement behavior and habitat use of a diverse range of riparian bird species and model the habitat availability of each of these species. We selected the following four riparian bird species: Bare-eyed Thrush Turdus tephronotus, Rufous Chatterer Turdoides rubiginosus, Zanzibar Sombre Greenbul Andropadus importunus insularis, and the Kenyan endemic Hinde's Babbler Turdoides hindei. We collected telemetric data of 14 individuals during a 2 months radio-tracking campaign along the Nzeeu River in southeast Kenya. We found that (1) all four species had similar home-range sizes, all geographically restricted and nearby the river; (2) all species mainly use dense thicket, in particular the invasive L. camara; (3) human settlements were avoided by the bird individuals observed; (4) the birds' movement, indicating foraging behavior, was comparatively slow within thickets, but significantly faster over open, agricultural areas; and (5) habitat suitability models underline the relevance of L. camara as suitable surrogate habitat for all understoreyed bird species, but also show that the clearance of thickets has led to a vanishing of large and interconnected thickets and thus might have negative effects on the population viability in the long run.

  16. Energetic Constraints on Species Coexistence in Birds.

    PubMed

    Pigot, Alexander L; Tobias, Joseph A; Jetz, Walter

    2016-03-01

    The association between species richness and ecosystem energy availability is one of the major geographic trends in biodiversity. It is often explained in terms of energetic constraints, such that coexistence among competing species is limited in low productivity environments. However, it has proven challenging to reject alternative views, including the null hypothesis that species richness has simply had more time to accumulate in productive regions, and thus the role of energetic constraints in limiting coexistence remains largely unknown. We use the phylogenetic relationships and geographic ranges of sister species (pairs of lineages who are each other's closest extant relatives) to examine the association between energy availability and coexistence across an entire vertebrate class (Aves). We show that the incidence of coexistence among sister species increases with overall species richness and is elevated in more productive ecosystems, even when accounting for differences in the evolutionary time available for coexistence to occur. Our results indicate that energy availability promotes species coexistence in closely related lineages, providing a key step toward a more mechanistic understanding of the productivity-richness relationship underlying global gradients in biodiversity.

  17. Energetic Constraints on Species Coexistence in Birds

    PubMed Central

    Pigot, Alexander L.

    2016-01-01

    The association between species richness and ecosystem energy availability is one of the major geographic trends in biodiversity. It is often explained in terms of energetic constraints, such that coexistence among competing species is limited in low productivity environments. However, it has proven challenging to reject alternative views, including the null hypothesis that species richness has simply had more time to accumulate in productive regions, and thus the role of energetic constraints in limiting coexistence remains largely unknown. We use the phylogenetic relationships and geographic ranges of sister species (pairs of lineages who are each other’s closest extant relatives) to examine the association between energy availability and coexistence across an entire vertebrate class (Aves). We show that the incidence of coexistence among sister species increases with overall species richness and is elevated in more productive ecosystems, even when accounting for differences in the evolutionary time available for coexistence to occur. Our results indicate that energy availability promotes species coexistence in closely related lineages, providing a key step toward a more mechanistic understanding of the productivity–richness relationship underlying global gradients in biodiversity. PMID:26974194

  18. Flight speeds among bird species: allometric and phylogenetic effects.

    PubMed

    Alerstam, Thomas; Rosén, Mikael; Bäckman, Johan; Ericson, Per G P; Hellgren, Olof

    2007-08-01

    Flight speed is expected to increase with mass and wing loading among flying animals and aircraft for fundamental aerodynamic reasons. Assuming geometrical and dynamical similarity, cruising flight speed is predicted to vary as (body mass)(1/6) and (wing loading)(1/2) among bird species. To test these scaling rules and the general importance of mass and wing loading for bird flight speeds, we used tracking radar to measure flapping flight speeds of individuals or flocks of migrating birds visually identified to species as well as their altitude and winds at the altitudes where the birds were flying. Equivalent airspeeds (airspeeds corrected to sea level air density, Ue) of 138 species, ranging 0.01-10 kg in mass, were analysed in relation to biometry and phylogeny. Scaling exponents in relation to mass and wing loading were significantly smaller than predicted (about 0.12 and 0.32, respectively, with similar results for analyses based on species and independent phylogenetic contrasts). These low scaling exponents may be the result of evolutionary restrictions on bird flight-speed range, counteracting too slow flight speeds among species with low wing loading and too fast speeds among species with high wing loading. This compression of speed range is partly attained through geometric differences, with aspect ratio showing a positive relationship with body mass and wing loading, but additional factors are required to fully explain the small scaling exponent of Ue in relation to wing loading. Furthermore, mass and wing loading accounted for only a limited proportion of the variation in Ue. Phylogeny was a powerful factor, in combination with wing loading, to account for the variation in Ue. These results demonstrate that functional flight adaptations and constraints associated with different evolutionary lineages have an important influence on cruising flapping flight speed that goes beyond the general aerodynamic scaling effects of mass and wing loading.

  19. Weather, Not Climate, Defines Distributions of Vagile Bird Species

    PubMed Central

    Reside, April E.; VanDerWal, Jeremy J.; Kutt, Alex S.; Perkins, Genevieve C.

    2010-01-01

    Background Accurate predictions of species distributions are essential for climate change impact assessments. However the standard practice of using long-term climate averages to train species distribution models might mute important temporal patterns of species distribution. The benefit of using temporally explicit weather and distribution data has not been assessed. We hypothesized that short-term weather associated with the time a species was recorded should be superior to long-term climate measures for predicting distributions of mobile species. Methodology We tested our hypothesis by generating distribution models for 157 bird species found in Australian tropical savannas (ATS) using modelling algorithm Maxent. The variable weather of the ATS supports a bird assemblage with variable movement patterns and a high incidence of nomadism. We developed “weather” models by relating climatic variables (mean temperature, rainfall, rainfall seasonality and temperature seasonality) from the three month, six month and one year period preceding each bird record over a 58 year period (1950–2008). These weather models were compared against models built using long-term (30 year) averages of the same climatic variables. Conclusions Weather models consistently achieved higher model scores than climate models, particularly for wide-ranging, nomadic and desert species. Climate models predicted larger range areas for species, whereas weather models quantified fluctuations in habitat suitability across months, seasons and years. Models based on long-term climate averages over-estimate availability of suitable habitat and species' climatic tolerances, masking species potential vulnerability to climate change. Our results demonstrate that dynamic approaches to distribution modelling, such as incorporating organism-appropriate temporal scales, improves understanding of species distributions. PMID:21042575

  20. Distribution and density of bird species hazardous to aircraft

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Robbins, C.S.; Gauthreaux, Sidney A.

    1975-01-01

    Only in the past 5 years has it become feasible to map the relative abundance of North American birds. Two programs presently under way and a third that is in the experimental phase are making possible the up-to-date mapping of abundance as well as distribution. A fourth program that has been used successfully in Europe and on a small scale in parts of North America yields detailed information on breeding distribution. The Breeding Bird Survey, sponsored by the U.S. Bureau of Sport Fisheries and Wildlife and the Canadian Wildlife Service, involves 2,000 randomly distributed roadside counts that are conducted during the height of the breeding season in all U.S. States and Canadian Provinces. Observations of approximately 1.4 million birds per year are entered on magnetic tape and subsequently used both for statistical analysis of population trends and for computer mapping of distribution and abundance. The National Audubon Society's Christmas Bird Count is conducted in about 1,000 circles, each 15 miles (24 km) in diameter, in the latter half of December. Raw data for past years have been published in voluminous reports, but not in a form for ready analysis. Under a contract between the U.S. Air Force and the U. S. Bureau of Sport Fisheries and Wildlife (in cooperation with the National Audubon Society), preliminary maps showing distribution and abundance of selected species that are potential hazards to aircraft are presently being mapped and prepared for publication. The Winter Bird Survey, which is in its fifth season of experimental study in a limited area in Central Maryland, may ultimately replace the Christmas Bird Count source. This Survey consists of a standardized 8-kilometer (5-mile) route covered uniformly once a year during midwinter. Bird Atlas programs, which map distribution but not abundance, are well established in Europe and are gaining interest in America

  1. Assessment of trace metals in four bird species from Korea.

    PubMed

    Kim, Jungsoo; Oh, Jong-Min

    2013-08-01

    In birds, heavy metal concentrations are influenced by diet intake, migratory pattern, and residence time. In the present study, heavy metal concentrations (in microgram per gram dry weight) were measured in livers of four bird species from Korea. Iron concentrations were greater in Eurasian Woodcocks (Scolopax rusticola) than in Grey Herons (Ardea cinerea), Little Egrets (Egretta garzetta), and Schrenck's Bitterns (Ixobrychus eurhythmus). Copper concentrations in Grey Herons were significantly higher than in other species. Lead concentrations were greater in Schrenck's Bitterns and Eurasian Woodcocks than in Grey Herons and Little Egrets. Eurasian Woodcocks had higher cadmium concentrations than in other species. Zinc and manganese concentrations did not differ among species. Iron, zinc, manganese, and copper concentrations from this study were within the range of other Korean bird studies, and these concentrations were far below toxic levels. Cadmium and lead accumulation trends in each species were different, and the results might be associated with their migration pattern and residence time in Korea. Grey Herons, Little Egrets, and Schrenck's Bitterns are usually summer visitors, and Eurasian Woodcocks are passage migrants. But herons and egrets were collected in spring, autumn, and winter, but not during breeding season. They might be residents, so they could more reflect Korean cadmium and lead contaminations than Schrenck's Bitterns. However, Eurasian Woodcocks could more reflect habitats outside Korea because of their short staying time in Korea.

  2. Species richness and morphological diversity of passerine birds.

    PubMed

    Ricklefs, Robert E

    2012-09-01

    The relationship between species richness and the occupation of niche space can provide insight into the processes that shape patterns of biodiversity. For example, if species interactions constrained coexistence, one might expect tendencies toward even spacing within niche space and positive relationships between diversity and total niche volume. I use morphological diversity of passerine birds as a proxy for diet, foraging maneuvers, and foraging substrates and examine the morphological space occupied by regional and local passerine avifaunas. Although independently diversified regional faunas exhibit convergent morphology, species are clustered rather than evenly distributed, the volume of the morphological space is weakly related to number of species per taxonomic family, and morphological volume is unrelated to number of species within both regional avifaunas and local assemblages. These results seemingly contradict patterns expected when species interactions constrain regional or local diversity, and they suggest a larger role for diversification, extinction, and dispersal limitation in shaping species richness.

  3. Species richness and morphological diversity of passerine birds

    PubMed Central

    Ricklefs, Robert E.

    2012-01-01

    The relationship between species richness and the occupation of niche space can provide insight into the processes that shape patterns of biodiversity. For example, if species interactions constrained coexistence, one might expect tendencies toward even spacing within niche space and positive relationships between diversity and total niche volume. I use morphological diversity of passerine birds as a proxy for diet, foraging maneuvers, and foraging substrates and examine the morphological space occupied by regional and local passerine avifaunas. Although independently diversified regional faunas exhibit convergent morphology, species are clustered rather than evenly distributed, the volume of the morphological space is weakly related to number of species per taxonomic family, and morphological volume is unrelated to number of species within both regional avifaunas and local assemblages. These results seemingly contradict patterns expected when species interactions constrain regional or local diversity, and they suggest a larger role for diversification, extinction, and dispersal limitation in shaping species richness. PMID:22908271

  4. Species richness and morphological diversity of passerine birds.

    PubMed

    Ricklefs, Robert E

    2012-09-01

    The relationship between species richness and the occupation of niche space can provide insight into the processes that shape patterns of biodiversity. For example, if species interactions constrained coexistence, one might expect tendencies toward even spacing within niche space and positive relationships between diversity and total niche volume. I use morphological diversity of passerine birds as a proxy for diet, foraging maneuvers, and foraging substrates and examine the morphological space occupied by regional and local passerine avifaunas. Although independently diversified regional faunas exhibit convergent morphology, species are clustered rather than evenly distributed, the volume of the morphological space is weakly related to number of species per taxonomic family, and morphological volume is unrelated to number of species within both regional avifaunas and local assemblages. These results seemingly contradict patterns expected when species interactions constrain regional or local diversity, and they suggest a larger role for diversification, extinction, and dispersal limitation in shaping species richness. PMID:22908271

  5. Chewing Lice (Phthiraptera) of Several Species of Wild Birds in Iran, with New Records

    PubMed Central

    Dik, Bilal; Halajian, Ali

    2013-01-01

    Background: Although there are about 520 species of birds in Iran, but only some of them have been checked for ectoparasites so far.The aim of this study was to check some more available species of the birds of Iran for lice. Methods: This study was performed between 2008–2010 in northern Iran. For this purpose we tried to check some of the wild bird species available and mostly not checked before to identify the lice of them.The birds were found in some of the houses of hunters keeping as trap for catching more birds, some of the bird keepers and a few dead birds from taxidermists. In this way we could check 79 birds of 6 species. Results: We identified 11 lice species on the birds and overall 15.2 % of the examined birds were infested by the lice. Nine lice species including Aquanirmus podicipis, Pseudomenopon dolium, Ardeicola sp, Ciconiphilus decimfasciatus; Menacanthus sp, Austromenopon transversum, Pectinopygus gyricornis, Colpocephalum turbinatum and Hohorstiella lata were recorded for the first time on the birds in Iran. One specimen of Menacanthus sp was found on the purple Heron (Ardea purpurea) that is a new host report for this lice. Conclusion: Although the infection rate was not very high in the birds, but 11 species of lice in 6 studied birds species in this study, shows there are still other lice species that exist in the birds and should be identified and added to Iran lice fauna list. PMID:23785698

  6. 45 CFR 670.25 - Designation of specially protected species of native mammals, birds, and plants.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... native mammals, birds, and plants. 670.25 Section 670.25 Public Welfare Regulations Relating to Public... Protected Species of Mammals, Birds, and Plants § 670.25 Designation of specially protected species of native mammals, birds, and plants. The following species has been designated as Specially...

  7. 45 CFR 670.25 - Designation of specially protected species of native mammals, birds, and plants.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... native mammals, birds, and plants. 670.25 Section 670.25 Public Welfare Regulations Relating to Public... Protected Species of Mammals, Birds, and Plants § 670.25 Designation of specially protected species of native mammals, birds, and plants. The following species has been designated as Specially...

  8. 45 CFR 670.25 - Designation of specially protected species of native mammals, birds, and plants.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... native mammals, birds, and plants. 670.25 Section 670.25 Public Welfare Regulations Relating to Public... Protected Species of Mammals, Birds, and Plants § 670.25 Designation of specially protected species of native mammals, birds, and plants. The following species has been designated as Specially...

  9. 45 CFR 670.25 - Designation of specially protected species of native mammals, birds, and plants.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... native mammals, birds, and plants. 670.25 Section 670.25 Public Welfare Regulations Relating to Public... Protected Species of Mammals, Birds, and Plants § 670.25 Designation of specially protected species of native mammals, birds, and plants. The following species has been designated as Specially...

  10. Stress, captivity, and reproduction in a wild bird species.

    PubMed

    Dickens, Molly J; Bentley, George E

    2014-09-01

    In seasonal species, glucocorticoid concentrations are often highest during the breeding season. However, the role of increased hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) activity in the regulation of reproduction remains poorly understood. Our study is the first, to our knowledge, to document reproductive consequences of a non-pharmacological hindrance to seasonal HPA fluctuations. Using wild-caught male and female European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) housed in an outdoor, semi-natural environment, we divided birds into two mixed-sex groups. One group remained in the outdoor aviary, where starlings breed at the appropriate time of year. The other group was transferred into an indoor flight aviary, where we predicted reproductive suppression to occur. We measured changes in corticosterone (CORT) at baseline and stress-induced concentrations prior to group separation and at the experiment's conclusion. After ten days, the birds showed remarkable differences in breeding behavior and HPA activity. Outdoor birds exhibited increases in baseline and stress-induced CORT and progressed into active breeding (pairing, nest building, egg laying, etc.). In contrast, indoor birds displayed no change in baseline or stress-induced CORT and few signs of active breeding. We found significant sex and treatment effects on expression of HPA and hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis elements, suggesting sex-specific regulatory mechanisms. Our data suggest a novel, facilitating role for the HPA axis in the transition between early breeding and active breeding in a wild, seasonal avian species. In addition, understanding how changes in housing condition affect seasonal HPA fluctuations may help alleviate barriers to breeding wild animals in captivity. PMID:25257808

  11. Stress, captivity, and reproduction in a wild bird species.

    PubMed

    Dickens, Molly J; Bentley, George E

    2014-09-01

    In seasonal species, glucocorticoid concentrations are often highest during the breeding season. However, the role of increased hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) activity in the regulation of reproduction remains poorly understood. Our study is the first, to our knowledge, to document reproductive consequences of a non-pharmacological hindrance to seasonal HPA fluctuations. Using wild-caught male and female European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) housed in an outdoor, semi-natural environment, we divided birds into two mixed-sex groups. One group remained in the outdoor aviary, where starlings breed at the appropriate time of year. The other group was transferred into an indoor flight aviary, where we predicted reproductive suppression to occur. We measured changes in corticosterone (CORT) at baseline and stress-induced concentrations prior to group separation and at the experiment's conclusion. After ten days, the birds showed remarkable differences in breeding behavior and HPA activity. Outdoor birds exhibited increases in baseline and stress-induced CORT and progressed into active breeding (pairing, nest building, egg laying, etc.). In contrast, indoor birds displayed no change in baseline or stress-induced CORT and few signs of active breeding. We found significant sex and treatment effects on expression of HPA and hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal (HPG) axis elements, suggesting sex-specific regulatory mechanisms. Our data suggest a novel, facilitating role for the HPA axis in the transition between early breeding and active breeding in a wild, seasonal avian species. In addition, understanding how changes in housing condition affect seasonal HPA fluctuations may help alleviate barriers to breeding wild animals in captivity.

  12. Cross-species transmission and emergence of novel viruses from birds.

    PubMed

    Chan, Jasper Fuk-Woo; To, Kelvin Kai-Wang; Chen, Honglin; Yuen, Kwok-Yung

    2015-02-01

    Birds, the only living member of the Dinosauria clade, are flying warm-blooded vertebrates displaying high species biodiversity, roosting and migratory behavior, and a unique adaptive immune system. Birds provide the natural reservoir for numerous viral species and therefore gene source for evolution, emergence and dissemination of novel viruses. The intrusions of human into natural habitats of wild birds, the domestication of wild birds as pets or racing birds, and the increasing poultry consumption by human have facilitated avian viruses to cross species barriers to cause zoonosis. Recently, a novel adenovirus was exclusively found in birds causing an outbreak of Chlamydophila psittaci infection among birds and humans. Instead of being the primary cause of an outbreak by jumping directly from bird to human, a novel avian virus can be an augmenter of another zoonotic agent causing the outbreak. A comprehensive avian virome will improve our understanding of birds' evolutionary dynamics.

  13. When the birds go unheard: highway noise disrupts information transfer between bird species.

    PubMed

    Grade, Aaron M; Sieving, Kathryn E

    2016-04-01

    Highway infrastructure and accompanying vehicle noise is associated with decreased wildlife populations in adjacent habitats. Noise masking of animal communication is an oft-cited potential mechanism underlying species loss in sound-polluted habitats. This study documents the disruption of between-species information transfer by anthropogenic noise. Titmice and chickadees broadcast specific calls to alert kin of predator threats, and sympatric vertebrates eavesdrop on these alarm calls to avoid predators. We tested if tufted titmouse alarm call eavesdropping by northern cardinals is disrupted by road noise. We broadcast recorded alarm calls to cardinals in natural areas near and far from highways. Cardinals reliably produced predator avoidance responses in quiet trials, but all birds in noisy areas failed to respond, demonstrating that highway noise is loud enough to disrupt this type of survival-related information via masking or cognitive distraction. Birds in family Paridae are abundant, highly social and vocal residents of woodlands across the Holarctic whose alarm calls are used by many species to mediate predation risks. Our work suggests that communication network disruption is likely to be widespread, and could help explain the pattern of reduced biodiversity near roadways. PMID:27095267

  14. When the birds go unheard: highway noise disrupts information transfer between bird species.

    PubMed

    Grade, Aaron M; Sieving, Kathryn E

    2016-04-01

    Highway infrastructure and accompanying vehicle noise is associated with decreased wildlife populations in adjacent habitats. Noise masking of animal communication is an oft-cited potential mechanism underlying species loss in sound-polluted habitats. This study documents the disruption of between-species information transfer by anthropogenic noise. Titmice and chickadees broadcast specific calls to alert kin of predator threats, and sympatric vertebrates eavesdrop on these alarm calls to avoid predators. We tested if tufted titmouse alarm call eavesdropping by northern cardinals is disrupted by road noise. We broadcast recorded alarm calls to cardinals in natural areas near and far from highways. Cardinals reliably produced predator avoidance responses in quiet trials, but all birds in noisy areas failed to respond, demonstrating that highway noise is loud enough to disrupt this type of survival-related information via masking or cognitive distraction. Birds in family Paridae are abundant, highly social and vocal residents of woodlands across the Holarctic whose alarm calls are used by many species to mediate predation risks. Our work suggests that communication network disruption is likely to be widespread, and could help explain the pattern of reduced biodiversity near roadways.

  15. The ant genus Tetramorium Mayr in the Afrotropical region (Hymenoptera, Formicidae, Myrmicinae): synonymisation of Decamorium Forel under Tetramorium, and taxonomic revision of the T. decem species group

    PubMed Central

    Hita Garcia, Francisco; Fisher, Brian L.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract In this study we synonymise the genus Decamorium Forel under Tetramorium Mayr, revise the new T. decem species group by providing a diagnosis of the group, an illustrated identification key to species level, and worker-based species descriptions for all five species, which include diagnoses, discussions, images, and distribution maps. The following species are revised in this study: T. decem Forel, comb. r., T. raptor sp. n., T. uelense Santschi, comb. r., T. ultor Forel, comb. r., stat. r. & stat. n., and T. venator sp. n. In addition, we also designate lectotypes for T. decem, T. uelense, and T. ultor. PMID:24899856

  16. Comparative Gut Microbiota of 59 Neotropical Bird Species

    PubMed Central

    Hird, Sarah M.; Sánchez, César; Carstens, Bryan C.; Brumfield, Robb T.

    2015-01-01

    The gut microbiota of vertebrates are essential to host health. Most non-model vertebrates, however, lack even a basic description of natural gut microbiota biodiversity. Here, we sampled 116 intestines from 59 Neotropical bird species and used the V6 region of the 16S rRNA molecule as a microbial fingerprint (average coverage per bird ~80,000 reads). A core microbiota of Proteobacteria, Firmicutes, Bacteroidetes, and Actinobacteria was identified, as well as several gut-associated genera. We tested 18 categorical variables associated with each bird for significant correlation to the gut microbiota; host taxonomic categories were most frequently significant and explained the most variation. Ecological variables (e.g., diet, foraging stratum) were also frequently significant but explained less variation. Little evidence was found for a significant influence of geographic space. Finally, we suggest that microbial sampling during field collection of organisms would propel biological understanding of evolutionary history and ecological significance of host-associated microbiota. PMID:26733954

  17. Sampling environmental acoustic recordings to determine bird species richness.

    PubMed

    Wimmer, Jason; Towsey, Michael; Roe, Paul; Williamson, Ian

    2013-09-01

    Acoustic sensors can be used to estimate species richness for vocal species such as birds. They can continuously and passively record large volumes of data over extended periods. These data must subsequently be analyzed to detect the presence of vocal species. Automated analysis of acoustic data for large numbers of species is complex and can be subject to high levels of false positive and false negative results. Manual analysis by experienced surveyors can produce accurate results; however the time and effort required to process even small volumes of data can make manual analysis prohibitive. This study examined the use of sampling methods to reduce the cost of analyzing large volumes of acoustic sensor data, while retaining high levels of species detection accuracy. Utilizing five days of manually analyzed acoustic sensor data from four sites, we examined a range of sampling frequencies and methods including random, stratified, and biologically informed. We found that randomly selecting 120 one-minute samples from the three hours immediately following dawn over five days of recordings, detected the highest number of species. On average, this method detected 62% of total species from 120 one-minute samples, compared to 34% of total species detected from traditional area search methods. Our results demonstrate that targeted sampling methods can provide an effective means for analyzing large volumes of acoustic sensor data efficiently and accurately. Development of automated and semi-automated techniques is required to assist in analyzing large volumes of acoustic sensor data.

  18. Interannual variability of NDVI and bird species diversity in Kenya

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oindo, Boniface O.; de By, Rolf A.; Skidmore, Andrew K.

    Species richness, or simply the number of species in a given area, is commonly used as an important indicator of biological diversity. Spatial variability in species richness has been postulated to depend upon environmental factors such as climate and climatic variability, which in turn may affect net primary productivity. The Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR) derived Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) has been shown to be correlated with climatic variables including rainfall, actual evapotranspiration and net primary productivity. To determine factors favoring high species richness, we examined the relationship between interannual NDVI variables and species richness of birds at a quarter degree scale (55 × 55 km). Results revealed a strong positive correlation between species richness and maximum average NDVI. Conversely, species richness showed negative correlation with standard deviation of maximum NDVI and the coefficient of variation. Though these relationships are indirect, they apparently operate through the green vegetation cover. Understanding such relationships can help in mapping and monitoring biological diversity, as well as in estimating changes in species richness in response to global climatic change.

  19. The Distribution and Abundance of Bird Species: Towards a Satellite, Data Driven Avian Energetics and Species Richness Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, James A.

    2003-01-01

    This paper addresses the fundamental question of why birds occur where and when they do, i.e., what are the causative factors that determine the spatio-temporal distributions, abundance, or richness of bird species? In this paper we outline the first steps toward building a satellite, data-driven model of avian energetics and species richness based on individual bird physiology, morphology, and interaction with the spatio-temporal habitat. To evaluate our model, we will use the North American Breeding Bird Survey and Christmas Bird Count data for species richness, wintering and breeding range. Long term and current satellite data series include AVHRR, Landsat, and MODIS.

  20. Looking beyond rare species as umbrella species: Northern Bobwhites (Colinus virginianus) and conservation of grassland and shrubland birds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Crosby, Andrew D.; Elmore, R.D.; Leslie,, David M.; Will, Rodney E.

    2015-01-01

    Changes in land use and land cover throughout the eastern half of North America have caused substantial declines in populations of birds that rely on grassland and shrubland vegetation types, including socially and economically important game birds such as the Northern Bobwhite (Colinus virginianus; hereafter bobwhites). As much attention is focused on habitat management and restoration for bobwhites, they may act as an umbrella species for other bird species with similar habitat requirements. We quantified the relationship of bobwhites to the overall bird community and evaluated the potential for bobwhites to act as an umbrella species for grassland and shrubland birds. We monitored bobwhite presence and bird community composition within 31 sample units on selected private lands in the south-central United States from 2009 to 2011. Bobwhites were strongly associated with other grassland and shrubland birds and were a significant positive predictor for 9 species. Seven of these, including Bell's Vireo (Vireo bell), Dicksissel (Spiza americana), and Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum), are listed as species of conservation concern. Species richness and occupancy probability of grassland and shrubland birds were higher relative to the overall bird community in sample units occupied by bobwhites. Our results show that bobwhites can act as an umbrella species for grassland and shrubland birds, although the specific species in any given situation will depend on region and management objectives. These results suggest that efficiency in conservation funding can be increased by using public interest in popular game species to leverage resources to meet multiple conservation objectives.

  1. Taxonomic revision of Collaria Provancher, 1872 (Hemiptera: Miridae) with the description of a new species from the Afrotropical region.

    PubMed

    Morales, Irina; Ferreira, Paulo S F; Forero, Dimitri

    2016-01-01

    Collaria Provancher (Mirinae: Stenodemini) is a genus of grass-feeding plant bugs with 14 recognized species. The present work presents a taxonomic revision of the genus, including redescriptions of all species and the description of C. schwartzi sp. nov. from Central and Eastern Africa. The female genitalia of C. boliviana and C. villiersi, and the male and female genitalia of C. improvisa and C. obscuricornis are described for the first time. New distributional records for the Neotropical region are provided. A key to separate all the species and illustrations of the male and female genitalia of almost all the species are included. We highlight the need to produce better series of specimens with accurate host-plant data. PMID:27470762

  2. Urban and rural habitats differ in number and type of bird feeders and in bird species consuming supplementary food.

    PubMed

    Tryjanowski, Piotr; Skórka, Piotr; Sparks, Tim H; Biaduń, Waldemar; Brauze, Tomasz; Hetmański, Tomasz; Martyka, Rafał; Indykiewicz, Piotr; Myczko, Łukasz; Kunysz, Przemysław; Kawa, Piotr; Czyż, Stanisław; Czechowski, Paweł; Polakowski, Michał; Zduniak, Piotr; Jerzak, Leszek; Janiszewski, Tomasz; Goławski, Artur; Duduś, Leszek; Nowakowski, Jacek J; Wuczyński, Andrzej; Wysocki, Dariusz

    2015-10-01

    Bird feeding is one of the most widespread direct interactions between man and nature, and this has important social and environmental consequences. However, this activity can differ between rural and urban habitats, due to inter alia habitat structure, human behaviour and the composition of wintering bird communities. We counted birds in 156 squares (0.25 km(2) each) in December 2012 and again in January 2013 in locations in and around 26 towns and cities across Poland (in each urban area, we surveyed 3 squares and also 3 squares in nearby rural areas). At each count, we noted the number of bird feeders, the number of bird feeders with food, the type of feeders, additional food supplies potentially available for birds (bread offered by people, bins) and finally the birds themselves. In winter, urban and rural areas differ in the availability of food offered intentionally and unintentionally to birds by humans. Both types of food availability are higher in urban areas. Our findings suggest that different types of bird feeder support only those species specialized for that particular food type and this relationship is similar in urban and rural areas.

  3. Afroprinus cavicola gen. et sp. n. from the Afrotropical region with notes on cave-dwelling Saprininae (Coleoptera, Histeridae)

    PubMed Central

    Lackner, Tomáš

    2013-01-01

    Abstract A new genus and species from Kenya, Afroprinus cavicola is herein described and illustrated and its systematic position is discussed. By the prosternal pre-apical foveae connected by marginal prosternal stria it resembles most of the Afrotropical species of the genus Chalcionellus Reichardt, 1932, or some species of the genus Pholioxenus Reichardt, 1932 from South Africa and Namibia. Afroprinus can be distinguished from Chalcionellus chiefly by the lack of pronotal depressions and a coarsely sculptured, non-metallic dorsum; from Afrotropical species of Pholioxenus it can be most easily distinguished by the asetose pronotal hypomeron. The new taxon was discovered in a cave, but lacks obvious troglophilic adaptations. Notes on other Saprininae taxa found in caves are given. An identification key to the genera of Afrotropical Saprininae is provided. PMID:23794872

  4. Whole Blood Cholinesterase Activity in 20 Species of Wild Birds.

    PubMed

    Horowitz, Igal H; Yanco, Esty G; Landau, Shmulik; Nadler-Valency, Rona; Anglister, Nili; Bueller-Rosenzweig, Ariela; Apelbom-Halbersberg, Tal; Cuneah, Olga; Hanji, Vera; Bellaiche, Michel

    2016-06-01

    Clinical signs of organophosphate and carbamate intoxication in wild birds can be mistaken for those of other diseases, thus potentially delaying diagnosis and implementation of life-saving treatment. The objective of this study was to determine the reference interval for blood cholinesterase activity in 20 different wild avian species from 7 different orders, thereby compiling a reference database for wildlife veterinarians. Blood was collected from birds not suspected of having organophosphate or carbamate toxicosis, and the modified Michel method, which determines the change in blood pH that directly correlates with cholinesterase activity, was used to measure blood cholinesterase levels. Results of change in blood pH values ranged from 0.11 for the white-tailed eagle ( Haliaeetus albicilla ) to 0.90 for the honey buzzard ( Pernis apivorus ). The results showed that even within the same family, interspecies differences in normal cholinesterase blood activity were not uncommon. The findings emphasized the importance of determining reference intervals for avian blood cholinesterase activity at the species level.

  5. Whole Blood Cholinesterase Activity in 20 Species of Wild Birds.

    PubMed

    Horowitz, Igal H; Yanco, Esty G; Landau, Shmulik; Nadler-Valency, Rona; Anglister, Nili; Bueller-Rosenzweig, Ariela; Apelbom-Halbersberg, Tal; Cuneah, Olga; Hanji, Vera; Bellaiche, Michel

    2016-06-01

    Clinical signs of organophosphate and carbamate intoxication in wild birds can be mistaken for those of other diseases, thus potentially delaying diagnosis and implementation of life-saving treatment. The objective of this study was to determine the reference interval for blood cholinesterase activity in 20 different wild avian species from 7 different orders, thereby compiling a reference database for wildlife veterinarians. Blood was collected from birds not suspected of having organophosphate or carbamate toxicosis, and the modified Michel method, which determines the change in blood pH that directly correlates with cholinesterase activity, was used to measure blood cholinesterase levels. Results of change in blood pH values ranged from 0.11 for the white-tailed eagle ( Haliaeetus albicilla ) to 0.90 for the honey buzzard ( Pernis apivorus ). The results showed that even within the same family, interspecies differences in normal cholinesterase blood activity were not uncommon. The findings emphasized the importance of determining reference intervals for avian blood cholinesterase activity at the species level. PMID:27315378

  6. Contribution to the knowledge of Afrotropical Dryinidae, Embolemidae and Sclerogibbidae (Hymenoptera), with description of new species from Central African Republic and Uganda.

    PubMed

    Olmi, Massimo; van Noort, Simon; Guglielmino, Adalgisa

    2016-01-01

    An updated checklist of Dryinidae, Embolemidae and Sclerogibbidae from Central African Republic and Uganda is presented. The following new species of Dryinidae are described: from Central African Republic: Anteon dzanganum sp. n. (Anteoninae); from Uganda: Anteon granulatum sp. n., Anteon kibalense sp. n., Anteon makererense sp. n., Anteon mubfs sp. n. (Anteoninae); Bocchus kibalensis sp. n. (Bocchinae); Dryinus kibalus sp. n. (Dryininae); Gonatopus kanyawarus sp. n. (Gonatopodinae). The following species have been recorded for the first time from Central African Republic: Embolemidae: Ampulicomorpha madecassa Olmi, 1999a; Embolemus capensis Olmi, 1997; Dryinidae: Aphelopus mediocarinatus (Benoit, 1951d), Aphelopus testaceus Olmi, 1991, Aphelopus wittei Benoit, 1951c (Aphelopinae); Anteon cautum Olmi, 1994a, Anteon evertsi Olmi, 1989, Anteon gutturnium (Benoit, 1951b), Anteon inflatrix Benoit, 1951b, Anteon kivuanum (Benoit, 1951c), Anteon semajanna Olmi, Copeland & Guglielmino, 2015, Anteon zairense Benoit, 1951d (Anteoninae); Pseudodryinus townesi (Olmi, 1984) (Dryininae); Echthrodelphax tauricus Ponomarenko, 1970, Gonatopus camerounensis Olmi, 2011, Gonatopus kolyadai Olmi, 2007b, Neodryinus antiquus Benoit, 1954, Neodryinus tussaci Olmi, 2004b (Gonatopodinae); Sclerogibbidae: Probethylus callani Richards, 1939b; Sclerogibba algerica Benoit, 1963, Sclerogibba rapax Olmi, 2005a. The following species have been recorded for the first time from Uganda: Embolemidae: Ampulicomorpha magna Olmi, 1996; Dryinidae: Anteon cautum Olmi, 1994a, Anteon fisheri Olmi, 2003, Anteon hoyoi Olmi, 1984, Anteon kivuanum (Benoit, 1951c), Anteon townesi Olmi, 1984, Anteon zairense Benoit, 1951d (Anteoninae); Bocchus bini Olmi, 1984 (Bocchinae); Dryinus saussurei (Ceballos, 1936) (Dryininae); Echthrodelphax migratorius Benoit, 1954, Neodryinus tussaci Olmi, 2004b (Gonatopodinae). The following further species has been recorded for the first time from Mali: Sclerogibba algerica Benoit

  7. Contribution to the knowledge of Afrotropical Dryinidae, Embolemidae and Sclerogibbidae (Hymenoptera), with description of new species from Central African Republic and Uganda

    PubMed Central

    Olmi, Massimo; van Noort, Simon; Guglielmino, Adalgisa

    2016-01-01

    Abstract An updated checklist of Dryinidae, Embolemidae and Sclerogibbidae from Central African Republic and Uganda is presented. The following new species of Dryinidae are described: from Central African Republic: Anteon dzanganum sp. n. (Anteoninae); from Uganda: Anteon granulatum sp. n., Anteon kibalense sp. n., Anteon makererense sp. n., Anteon mubfs sp. n. (Anteoninae); Bocchus kibalensis sp. n. (Bocchinae); Dryinus kibalus sp. n. (Dryininae); Gonatopus kanyawarus sp. n. (Gonatopodinae). The following species have been recorded for the first time from Central African Republic: Embolemidae: Ampulicomorpha madecassa Olmi, 1999a; Embolemus capensis Olmi, 1997; Dryinidae: Aphelopus mediocarinatus (Benoit, 1951d), Aphelopus testaceus Olmi, 1991, Aphelopus wittei Benoit, 1951c (Aphelopinae); Anteon cautum Olmi, 1994a, Anteon evertsi Olmi, 1989, Anteon gutturnium (Benoit, 1951b), Anteon inflatrix Benoit, 1951b, Anteon kivuanum (Benoit, 1951c), Anteon semajanna Olmi, Copeland & Guglielmino, 2015, Anteon zairense Benoit, 1951d (Anteoninae); Pseudodryinus townesi (Olmi, 1984) (Dryininae); Echthrodelphax tauricus Ponomarenko, 1970, Gonatopus camerounensis Olmi, 2011, Gonatopus kolyadai Olmi, 2007b, Neodryinus antiquus Benoit, 1954, Neodryinus tussaci Olmi, 2004b (Gonatopodinae); Sclerogibbidae: Probethylus callani Richards, 1939b; Sclerogibba algerica Benoit, 1963, Sclerogibba rapax Olmi, 2005a. The following species have been recorded for the first time from Uganda: Embolemidae: Ampulicomorpha magna Olmi, 1996; Dryinidae: Anteon cautum Olmi, 1994a, Anteon fisheri Olmi, 2003, Anteon hoyoi Olmi, 1984, Anteon kivuanum (Benoit, 1951c), Anteon townesi Olmi, 1984, Anteon zairense Benoit, 1951d (Anteoninae); Bocchus bini Olmi, 1984 (Bocchinae); Dryinus saussurei (Ceballos, 1936) (Dryininae); Echthrodelphax migratorius Benoit, 1954, Neodryinus tussaci Olmi, 2004b (Gonatopodinae). The following further species has been recorded for the first time from Mali: Sclerogibba algerica

  8. Species-area relation for birds of the Solomon Archipelago.

    PubMed

    Diamond, J M; Mayr, E

    1976-01-01

    Accurate values of number of breeding bird species have been obtained for 50 islands of the Solomon Archipelago. From information about species altitudinal distributions on each island, the values are apportioned into number of montane species (S(mt)) and of species present at sea-level (S(low)). S(low) increases linearly with the logarithm of island area A over a million-fold range of areas (correlation coefficient 0.99) and with a comparatively low slope, while the log S-log A relation is markedly curved. With increasing isolation of an archipelago, the species-area relation decreases in slope and may shift in form from a power function to an exponential. Comparison of Pacific archipelagoes at different distances from the colonization source of New Guinea shows that the decrease in slope is due to increasing intra-archipelago immigration rates, arising from overrepresentation of the most vagile inter-archipelago immigrants in more distant archipelagoes. When colonists are sorted into sets correlated with their dispersal abilities, the slope of the species-area relation for the most vagile set is close to zero, but for the least vagile set is close to the value predicted by Preston for "isolated universes." PMID:16592301

  9. Species-area relation for birds of the Solomon Archipelago.

    PubMed

    Diamond, J M; Mayr, E

    1976-01-01

    Accurate values of number of breeding bird species have been obtained for 50 islands of the Solomon Archipelago. From information about species altitudinal distributions on each island, the values are apportioned into number of montane species (S(mt)) and of species present at sea-level (S(low)). S(low) increases linearly with the logarithm of island area A over a million-fold range of areas (correlation coefficient 0.99) and with a comparatively low slope, while the log S-log A relation is markedly curved. With increasing isolation of an archipelago, the species-area relation decreases in slope and may shift in form from a power function to an exponential. Comparison of Pacific archipelagoes at different distances from the colonization source of New Guinea shows that the decrease in slope is due to increasing intra-archipelago immigration rates, arising from overrepresentation of the most vagile inter-archipelago immigrants in more distant archipelagoes. When colonists are sorted into sets correlated with their dispersal abilities, the slope of the species-area relation for the most vagile set is close to zero, but for the least vagile set is close to the value predicted by Preston for "isolated universes."

  10. Birds from the Azores: An updated list with some comments on species distribution

    PubMed Central

    Rodrigues, Pedro R; Bried, Joël; Mendonça, Enésima P; Gabriel, Rosalina; Borges, Paulo Alexandre Vieira

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Background An updated checklist of the Birds of the Azores is presented based on information compiled from Rodrigues et al. (2010) and from the websites, Azores Bird Club. (2014), Aves dos Açores (2014) Azores Bird Sightings (2014) and Vittery (2014), since 2010. New information The checklist has a total of 414 species, including 38 new species. Almost half of the species and subspecies that occur in the Azores have a Palearctic origin, the remaining ones being essentialy Nearctic and Holarctic species. São Miguel is the island with the highest number of bird species, followed by Terceira, Corvo and Flores islands. PMID:26696765

  11. Learning About Bird Species on the Primary Level

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Randler, Christoph

    2009-04-01

    Animal species identification is often emphasized as a basic prerequisite for an understanding of ecology because ecological interactions are based on interactions between species at least as it is taught on the school level. Therefore, training identification skills or using identification books seems a worthwhile task in biology education, and should already start on the primary level. On the primary level, however, complex interactions could not be taught but pupils are often interested in basic knowledge about species. We developed a hands-on, group-based and self-determined learning phase organized in workstations. About 138 pupils (2nd-4th graders) participated in this study. The two groups received an identification treatment with six different bird species. These were presented either as soft toys or as taxidermy specimen. Both groups scored similar prior and after the treatment (posttest 1) and with a delay of 6-8 weeks (posttest 2). More complex general linear modeling revealed a significant influence of prior knowledge, treatment and of grade (2nd, 3rd or 4th grade) on the first posttest while in the retention test gender differences emerged. We suggest that soft toys may be of equal value for teaching species identification on the primary level compared to natural taxidermic specimen, especially when considering pricing, insensitivity to handling, and contamination with agents used for preservation.

  12. Ecology of Avian Influenza Virus in Wild Birds in Tropical Africa.

    PubMed

    Gaidet, Nicolas

    2016-05-01

    Several ecologic factors have been proposed to describe the mechanisms whereby host ecology and the environment influence the transmission of avian influenza viruses (AIVs) in wild birds, including bird's foraging behavior, migratory pattern, seasonal congregation, the rate of recruitment of juvenile birds, and abiotic factors. However, these ecologic factors are derived from studies that have been conducted in temperate or boreal regions of the Northern Hemisphere. These factors cannot be directly translated to tropical regions, where differences in host ecology and seasonality may produce different ecologic interactions between wild birds and AIV. An extensive dataset of AIV detection in wildfowl and shorebirds sampled across tropical Africa was used to analyze how the distinctive ecologic features of Afrotropical regions may influence the dynamics of AIV transmission in wild birds. The strong seasonality of rainfall and surface area of wetlands allows testing of how the seasonality of wildfowl ecology (reproduction phenology and congregation) is related to AIV seasonal dynamics. The diversity of the African wildfowl community provides the opportunity to investigate the respective influence of migratory behavior, foraging behavior, and phylogeny on species variation in infection rate. Large aggregation sites of shorebirds in Africa allow testing for the existence of AIV infection hot spots. We found that the processes whereby host ecology influence AIV transmission in wild birds in the Afrotropical context operate through ecologic factors (seasonal drying of wetlands and extended and nonsynchronized breeding periods) that are different than the one described in temperate regions, hence, resulting in different patterns of AIV infection dynamics. PMID:27309070

  13. Ecology of Avian Influenza Virus in Wild Birds in Tropical Africa.

    PubMed

    Gaidet, Nicolas

    2016-05-01

    Several ecologic factors have been proposed to describe the mechanisms whereby host ecology and the environment influence the transmission of avian influenza viruses (AIVs) in wild birds, including bird's foraging behavior, migratory pattern, seasonal congregation, the rate of recruitment of juvenile birds, and abiotic factors. However, these ecologic factors are derived from studies that have been conducted in temperate or boreal regions of the Northern Hemisphere. These factors cannot be directly translated to tropical regions, where differences in host ecology and seasonality may produce different ecologic interactions between wild birds and AIV. An extensive dataset of AIV detection in wildfowl and shorebirds sampled across tropical Africa was used to analyze how the distinctive ecologic features of Afrotropical regions may influence the dynamics of AIV transmission in wild birds. The strong seasonality of rainfall and surface area of wetlands allows testing of how the seasonality of wildfowl ecology (reproduction phenology and congregation) is related to AIV seasonal dynamics. The diversity of the African wildfowl community provides the opportunity to investigate the respective influence of migratory behavior, foraging behavior, and phylogeny on species variation in infection rate. Large aggregation sites of shorebirds in Africa allow testing for the existence of AIV infection hot spots. We found that the processes whereby host ecology influence AIV transmission in wild birds in the Afrotropical context operate through ecologic factors (seasonal drying of wetlands and extended and nonsynchronized breeding periods) that are different than the one described in temperate regions, hence, resulting in different patterns of AIV infection dynamics.

  14. Likeability of Garden Birds: Importance of Species Knowledge & Richness in Connecting People to Nature.

    PubMed

    Cox, Daniel T C; Gaston, Kevin J

    2015-01-01

    Interacting with nature is widely recognised as providing many health and well-being benefits. As people live increasingly urbanised lifestyles, the provision of food for garden birds may create a vital link for connecting people to nature and enabling them to access these benefits. However, it is not clear which factors determine the pleasure that people receive from watching birds at their feeders. These may be dependent on the species that are present, the abundance of individuals and the species richness of birds around the feeders. We quantitatively surveyed urban households from towns in southern England to determine the factors that influence the likeability of 14 common garden bird species, and to assess whether people prefer to see a greater abundance of individuals or increased species richness at their feeders. There was substantial variation in likeability across species, with songbirds being preferred over non-songbirds. Species likeability increased for people who fed birds regularly and who could name the species. We found a strong correlation between the number of species that a person could correctly identify and how connected to nature they felt when they watched garden birds. Species richness was preferred over a greater number of individuals of the same species. Although we do not show causation this study suggests that it is possible to increase the well-being benefits that people gain from watching birds at their feeders. This could be done first through a human to bird approach by encouraging regular interactions between people and their garden birds, such as through learning the species names and providing food. Second, it could be achieved through a bird to human approach by increasing garden songbird diversity because the pleasure that a person receives from watching an individual bird at a feeder is dependent not only on its species but also on the diversity of birds at the feeder.

  15. Likeability of Garden Birds: Importance of Species Knowledge & Richness in Connecting People to Nature.

    PubMed

    Cox, Daniel T C; Gaston, Kevin J

    2015-01-01

    Interacting with nature is widely recognised as providing many health and well-being benefits. As people live increasingly urbanised lifestyles, the provision of food for garden birds may create a vital link for connecting people to nature and enabling them to access these benefits. However, it is not clear which factors determine the pleasure that people receive from watching birds at their feeders. These may be dependent on the species that are present, the abundance of individuals and the species richness of birds around the feeders. We quantitatively surveyed urban households from towns in southern England to determine the factors that influence the likeability of 14 common garden bird species, and to assess whether people prefer to see a greater abundance of individuals or increased species richness at their feeders. There was substantial variation in likeability across species, with songbirds being preferred over non-songbirds. Species likeability increased for people who fed birds regularly and who could name the species. We found a strong correlation between the number of species that a person could correctly identify and how connected to nature they felt when they watched garden birds. Species richness was preferred over a greater number of individuals of the same species. Although we do not show causation this study suggests that it is possible to increase the well-being benefits that people gain from watching birds at their feeders. This could be done first through a human to bird approach by encouraging regular interactions between people and their garden birds, such as through learning the species names and providing food. Second, it could be achieved through a bird to human approach by increasing garden songbird diversity because the pleasure that a person receives from watching an individual bird at a feeder is dependent not only on its species but also on the diversity of birds at the feeder. PMID:26560968

  16. Likeability of Garden Birds: Importance of Species Knowledge & Richness in Connecting People to Nature

    PubMed Central

    Cox, Daniel T. C.; Gaston, Kevin J.

    2015-01-01

    Interacting with nature is widely recognised as providing many health and well-being benefits. As people live increasingly urbanised lifestyles, the provision of food for garden birds may create a vital link for connecting people to nature and enabling them to access these benefits. However, it is not clear which factors determine the pleasure that people receive from watching birds at their feeders. These may be dependent on the species that are present, the abundance of individuals and the species richness of birds around the feeders. We quantitatively surveyed urban households from towns in southern England to determine the factors that influence the likeability of 14 common garden bird species, and to assess whether people prefer to see a greater abundance of individuals or increased species richness at their feeders. There was substantial variation in likeability across species, with songbirds being preferred over non-songbirds. Species likeability increased for people who fed birds regularly and who could name the species. We found a strong correlation between the number of species that a person could correctly identify and how connected to nature they felt when they watched garden birds. Species richness was preferred over a greater number of individuals of the same species. Although we do not show causation this study suggests that it is possible to increase the well-being benefits that people gain from watching birds at their feeders. This could be done first through a human to bird approach by encouraging regular interactions between people and their garden birds, such as through learning the species names and providing food. Second, it could be achieved through a bird to human approach by increasing garden songbird diversity because the pleasure that a person receives from watching an individual bird at a feeder is dependent not only on its species but also on the diversity of birds at the feeder. PMID:26560968

  17. The unusual Afrotropical and Oriental leafhopper subfamily Signoretiinae (Hemiptera, Cicadellidae): taxonomic notes, new distributional records, and description of two new Signoretia species

    PubMed Central

    Takiya, Daniela M.; Dietrich, Christopher H.; Viraktamath, Chandra A.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract The leafhopper subfamily Signoretiinae is redescribed and includes two tribes: Signoretiini Baker and Phlogisini Linnavuori. Redescriptions of included tribes, diagnoses and a taxonomic key to genera are provided. New records for genera of Signoretiinae are as follows: Phlogis in Central African Republic, Malaysia and Thailand; Preta in Thailand; and Signoretia in the Republic of the Congo, Zambia, Thailand, Vietnam, and Taiwan (China). Signoretia pacifica is newly recorded from Cameroon. In addition, detailed illustrations of the male genitalia of the previously described species, Chouious tianzeus, Preta gratiosa,and Signoretia yangli are provided; the male genitalia of Signoretia malaya are described for the first time; and two new species of Signoretia are described, Signoretia delicata sp. n. from the Philippinesand Signoretia kintendela sp. n. from the Republic of the Congo. PMID:24039527

  18. Salmonellosis in garden birds in Scotland, 1995 to 2008: geographic region, Salmonella enterica phage type and bird species.

    PubMed

    Pennycott, T W; Mather, H A; Bennett, G; Foster, G

    2010-04-01

    Salmonellosis was diagnosed in garden birds from 198 incidents in Scotland between September 1995 and August 2008. Salmonellosis was essentially a disease of finches in the north of Scotland, but in the south of Scotland it was also a problem in house sparrows. Almost all of the incidents were caused by Salmonella Typhimurium phage types 40 or 56/variant, but regional variation in phage types was observed. In the north of Scotland, one phage type (DT 40) predominated, but in the south of Scotland two phage types were commonly isolated (DTs 40 and 56/variant, with the latter the more common of the two phage types). This regional difference was statistically significant for salmonellosis in greenfinches, chaffinches and 'other garden birds', but not for house sparrows. Different temporal patterns for different species of bird and different phage types were also observed within regions. These findings suggest that the epidemiology of salmonellosis in garden birds varies depending on the phage type of Salmonella and the species of garden bird, with additional regional differences depending on the wild bird populations and the phage types of Salmonella in circulation. An awareness of these differences will help when formulating guidelines aimed at reducing the impact of salmonellosis in garden birds.

  19. Familiarity breeds content: assessing bird species popularity with culturomics

    PubMed Central

    Jepson, Paul R.; Malhado, Ana C. M.; Ladle, Richard J.

    2016-01-01

    Understanding public perceptions of biodiversity is essential to ensure continued support for conservation efforts. Despite this, insights remain scarce at broader spatial scales, mostly due to a lack of adequate methods for their assessment. The emergence of new technologies with global reach and high levels of participation provide exciting new opportunities to study the public visibility of biodiversity and the factors that drive it. Here, we use a measure of internet saliency to assess the national and international visibility of species within four taxa of Brazilian birds (toucans, hummingbirds, parrots and woodpeckers), and evaluate how much of this visibility can be explained by factors associated with familiarity, aesthetic appeal and conservation interest. Our results strongly indicate that familiarity (human population within the range of a species) is the most important factor driving internet saliency within Brazil, while aesthetic appeal (body size) best explains variation in international saliency. Endemism and conservation status of a species had small, but often negative, effects on either metric of internet saliency. While further studies are needed to evaluate the relationship between internet content and the cultural visibility of different species, our results strongly indicate that internet saliency can be considered as a broad proxy of cultural interest. PMID:26966663

  20. Familiarity breeds content: assessing bird species popularity with culturomics.

    PubMed

    Correia, Ricardo A; Jepson, Paul R; Malhado, Ana C M; Ladle, Richard J

    2016-01-01

    Understanding public perceptions of biodiversity is essential to ensure continued support for conservation efforts. Despite this, insights remain scarce at broader spatial scales, mostly due to a lack of adequate methods for their assessment. The emergence of new technologies with global reach and high levels of participation provide exciting new opportunities to study the public visibility of biodiversity and the factors that drive it. Here, we use a measure of internet saliency to assess the national and international visibility of species within four taxa of Brazilian birds (toucans, hummingbirds, parrots and woodpeckers), and evaluate how much of this visibility can be explained by factors associated with familiarity, aesthetic appeal and conservation interest. Our results strongly indicate that familiarity (human population within the range of a species) is the most important factor driving internet saliency within Brazil, while aesthetic appeal (body size) best explains variation in international saliency. Endemism and conservation status of a species had small, but often negative, effects on either metric of internet saliency. While further studies are needed to evaluate the relationship between internet content and the cultural visibility of different species, our results strongly indicate that internet saliency can be considered as a broad proxy of cultural interest. PMID:26966663

  1. Not "Alona" monacantha Sars, 1901, but Coronatella hardingi (Brehm, 1957) Crustacea: Branchiopoda: Cladocera) in the Afrotropics.

    PubMed

    Damme, Kay Van

    2016-01-01

    Many taxa formerly housed in the lump genus Alona Baird, 1843 remain data-deficient. These species are often overlooked or wrongly identified during faunistic and ecological studies. "Alona" hardingi (Brehm, 1957) is a lesser known taxon, hidden for decades under records of "Alona" monacantha Sars, 1901. Both taxa have recently been allocated to the genus Coronatella Dybowski & Grochowski, 1894, yet without revision of the former. The morphology of Coronatella hardingi (Brehm, 1957), a widespread and abundant species in Afrotropical freshwater habitats, is examined here for the first time, including the first description of the male. The species is redescribed, based on populations from Southern Africa and confirmed as a good species and a valid sibling of the Neotropical C. monacantha (Sars, 1901) and the SE Asian C. acuticostata (Sars, 1903). The study of the Afrotropical C. hardingi allows a better understanding of this small tropical species complex, for which a diagnosis is included. PMID:27470800

  2. Prevalence of Chlamydia psittaci and Other Chlamydia Species in Wild Birds in Poland

    PubMed Central

    Krawiec, Marta; Piasecki, Tomasz

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Avian chlamydiosis is a zoonotic disease occurring in humans, poultry, and exotic birds. It has been suggested that some wild bird species play an important role as reservoirs for Chlamydia, especially Chlamydia psittaci. Whereas C. psittaci is the predominant chlamydial agent in birds, in the present study we have determined the prevalence of different species of Chlamydia among selected wild bird species in Poland using a rapid and sensitive real-time PCR method. In total, 369 free-living birds from 35 bird species and 15 orders were examined. Samples from 27 birds (7.3%) were positive for chlamydial DNA in the PCR; 22 positive samples (81.5%) belonged to C. psittaci, three to Chlamydia trachomatis (11.1%), and two (7.4%) classified only to the genus Chlamydia. Most of C. psittaci–positive samples belonged to five orders: Anseriformes, Columbiformes, Gruiformes, Phasianiformes, and Passeriformes. All C. trachomatis samples were obtained from Eurasian coots (Gruiformes). Two Chlamydia-positive samples not classified to any Chlamydia species were obtained from a common wood pigeon (Columbiformes) and a common buzzard (Accipitriformes). Detection of C. psittaci and C. trachomatis in free-living bird populations force to think on significance of birds as reservoir of varied Chlamydia species and their epidemiological importance. PMID:26501593

  3. Prevalence of Chlamydia psittaci and Other Chlamydia Species in Wild Birds in Poland.

    PubMed

    Krawiec, Marta; Piasecki, Tomasz; Wieliczko, Alina

    2015-11-01

    Avian chlamydiosis is a zoonotic disease occurring in humans, poultry, and exotic birds. It has been suggested that some wild bird species play an important role as reservoirs for Chlamydia, especially Chlamydia psittaci. Whereas C. psittaci is the predominant chlamydial agent in birds, in the present study we have determined the prevalence of different species of Chlamydia among selected wild bird species in Poland using a rapid and sensitive real-time PCR method. In total, 369 free-living birds from 35 bird species and 15 orders were examined. Samples from 27 birds (7.3%) were positive for chlamydial DNA in the PCR; 22 positive samples (81.5%) belonged to C. psittaci, three to Chlamydia trachomatis (11.1%), and two (7.4%) classified only to the genus Chlamydia. Most of C. psittaci-positive samples belonged to five orders: Anseriformes, Columbiformes, Gruiformes, Phasianiformes, and Passeriformes. All C. trachomatis samples were obtained from Eurasian coots (Gruiformes). Two Chlamydia-positive samples not classified to any Chlamydia species were obtained from a common wood pigeon (Columbiformes) and a common buzzard (Accipitriformes). Detection of C. psittaci and C. trachomatis in free-living bird populations force to think on significance of birds as reservoir of varied Chlamydia species and their epidemiological importance.

  4. Species List of Alaskan Birds, Mammals, Fish, Amphibians, Reptiles, and Invertebrates. Alaska Region Report Number 82.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Taylor, Tamra Faris

    This publication contains a detailed list of the birds, mammals, fish, amphibians, reptiles, and invertebrates found in Alaska. Part I lists the species by geographical regions. Part II lists the species by the ecological regions of the state. (CO)

  5. Palearctic elements in the old world tropics: a taxonomic revision of the ant genus Temnothorax Mayr (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) for the Afrotropical biogeographical region

    PubMed Central

    Prebus, Matthew

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Four new Afrotropical species of the ant genus Temnothorax are described and illustrated, all from Kenya. Based upon high resemblance to taxa known from the North African and Iberian territories of the Mediterranean region, these new tropical elements are placed into known Palaearctic species complexes. Specifically, Temnothorax brevidentis sp. n., Temnothorax mpala sp. n. and Temnothorax rufus sp. n. are placed in the laurae species group, and Temnothorax solidinodus sp. n. is placed in the angustulus species group. Two already known Temnothorax species from the region, Temnothorax cenatus (Bolton, 1982) and Temnothorax megalops (Hamann & Klemm, 1967), are also placed into the laurae species group based on the high number of shared morphological characters. Diagnoses for the African representatives of laurae and angustulus species groups of the Afrotropical biogeographical region are provided. A key to workers of the six Temnothorax species known to occur in the Afrotropical biogeographical region is provided, as well as diagnoses of morphologically similar myrmicine genera. PMID:25755623

  6. Seasonal Changes in Bird Species and Feeding Guilds along Elevational Gradients of the Central Himalayas, Nepal.

    PubMed

    Katuwal, Hem Bahadur; Basnet, Khadga; Khanal, Bhaiya; Devkota, Shiva; Rai, Sanjeev Kumar; Gajurel, Jyoti Prasad; Scheidegger, Christoph; Nobis, Michael P

    2016-01-01

    The Himalayas are a global hotspot for bird diversity with a large number of threatened species, but little is known about seasonal changes in bird communities along elevational gradients in this region. We studied the seasonality of bird diversity in six valleys of the Central Himalayas, Nepal. Using 318 plots with a 50 m radius, located from 2200 to 3800 m a.s.l., and repeated sampling during different seasons (mainly pre-monsoon, monsoon, and post-monsoon), we analyzed 3642 occurrences of 178 species. Birds classified in the literature as resident were more species-rich than migratory birds (140 vs. 38 species). In all six valleys and within the studied elevation range, species richness of all birds showed a peak at mid-elevation levels of 2600 or 3000 m a.s.l. Similar patterns were found for the most species-rich feeding guilds of insectivores (96 species) and omnivores (24 species), whereas the species richness of herbivores (37 species including frugivores) increased towards higher elevations. Among these feeding guilds, only species richness of insectivores showed pronounced seasonal changes with higher species numbers during post-monsoon season. Similarly, individual bird species showed distinct spatio-temporal distribution patterns, with transitions from species dominated by elevational differences to those characterized by strong seasonal changes. In an era of climate change, the results demonstrate that individual bird species as well as feeding guilds might greatly differ in their responses to climate warming and changes in the seasonality of the precipitation regime, two aspects of climate change which should not be analyzed independently. PMID:27367903

  7. Seasonal Changes in Bird Species and Feeding Guilds along Elevational Gradients of the Central Himalayas, Nepal.

    PubMed

    Katuwal, Hem Bahadur; Basnet, Khadga; Khanal, Bhaiya; Devkota, Shiva; Rai, Sanjeev Kumar; Gajurel, Jyoti Prasad; Scheidegger, Christoph; Nobis, Michael P

    2016-01-01

    The Himalayas are a global hotspot for bird diversity with a large number of threatened species, but little is known about seasonal changes in bird communities along elevational gradients in this region. We studied the seasonality of bird diversity in six valleys of the Central Himalayas, Nepal. Using 318 plots with a 50 m radius, located from 2200 to 3800 m a.s.l., and repeated sampling during different seasons (mainly pre-monsoon, monsoon, and post-monsoon), we analyzed 3642 occurrences of 178 species. Birds classified in the literature as resident were more species-rich than migratory birds (140 vs. 38 species). In all six valleys and within the studied elevation range, species richness of all birds showed a peak at mid-elevation levels of 2600 or 3000 m a.s.l. Similar patterns were found for the most species-rich feeding guilds of insectivores (96 species) and omnivores (24 species), whereas the species richness of herbivores (37 species including frugivores) increased towards higher elevations. Among these feeding guilds, only species richness of insectivores showed pronounced seasonal changes with higher species numbers during post-monsoon season. Similarly, individual bird species showed distinct spatio-temporal distribution patterns, with transitions from species dominated by elevational differences to those characterized by strong seasonal changes. In an era of climate change, the results demonstrate that individual bird species as well as feeding guilds might greatly differ in their responses to climate warming and changes in the seasonality of the precipitation regime, two aspects of climate change which should not be analyzed independently.

  8. Seasonal Changes in Bird Species and Feeding Guilds along Elevational Gradients of the Central Himalayas, Nepal

    PubMed Central

    Katuwal, Hem Bahadur; Basnet, Khadga; Khanal, Bhaiya; Devkota, Shiva; Rai, Sanjeev Kumar; Gajurel, Jyoti Prasad; Scheidegger, Christoph; Nobis, Michael P.

    2016-01-01

    The Himalayas are a global hotspot for bird diversity with a large number of threatened species, but little is known about seasonal changes in bird communities along elevational gradients in this region. We studied the seasonality of bird diversity in six valleys of the Central Himalayas, Nepal. Using 318 plots with a 50 m radius, located from 2200 to 3800 m a.s.l., and repeated sampling during different seasons (mainly pre-monsoon, monsoon, and post-monsoon), we analyzed 3642 occurrences of 178 species. Birds classified in the literature as resident were more species-rich than migratory birds (140 vs. 38 species). In all six valleys and within the studied elevation range, species richness of all birds showed a peak at mid-elevation levels of 2600 or 3000 m a.s.l. Similar patterns were found for the most species-rich feeding guilds of insectivores (96 species) and omnivores (24 species), whereas the species richness of herbivores (37 species including frugivores) increased towards higher elevations. Among these feeding guilds, only species richness of insectivores showed pronounced seasonal changes with higher species numbers during post-monsoon season. Similarly, individual bird species showed distinct spatio-temporal distribution patterns, with transitions from species dominated by elevational differences to those characterized by strong seasonal changes. In an era of climate change, the results demonstrate that individual bird species as well as feeding guilds might greatly differ in their responses to climate warming and changes in the seasonality of the precipitation regime, two aspects of climate change which should not be analyzed independently. PMID:27367903

  9. Sex determination in 58 bird species and evaluation of CHD gene as a universal molecular marker in bird sexing.

    PubMed

    Vucicevic, Milos; Stevanov-Pavlovic, Marija; Stevanovic, Jevrosima; Bosnjak, Jasna; Gajic, Bojan; Aleksic, Nevenka; Stanimirovic, Zoran

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this research was to test the CHD gene (Chromo Helicase DNA-binding gene) as a universal molecular marker for sexing birds of relatively distant species. The CHD gene corresponds to the aim because of its high degree of conservation and different lengths in Z and W chromosomes due to different intron sizes. DNA was isolated from feathers and the amplification of the CHD gene was performed with the following sets of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) primers: 2550F/2718R and P2/P8. Sex determination was attempted in 284 samples of 58 bird species. It was successful in 50 bird species; in 16 of those (Alopochen aegyptiacus, Ara severus, Aratinga acuticaudata, Bucorvus leadbeateri, Cereopsis novaehollandiae, Columba arquatrix, Corvus corax, C. frugilegus, Cyanoliseus patagonus, Guttera plumifera, Lamprotornis superbus, Milvus milvus, Neophron percnopterus, Ocyphaps lophotes, Podiceps cristatus, and Poicephalus senegalus), it was carried out for the first time using molecular markers and PCR. It is reasonable to assume that extensive research is necessary to define the CHD gene as a universal molecular marker for successful sex determination in all bird species (with exception of ratites). The results of this study may largely contribute to the aim. PMID:22553188

  10. Does bird species diversity vary among forest types? A local-scale test in Southern Chile

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fontúrbel, Francisco E.; Jiménez, Jaime E.

    2014-10-01

    Birds are the most diverse vertebrate group in Chile, characterized by low species turnover at the country-size scale (high alpha but low beta diversities), resembling an island biota. We tested whether this low differentiation is valid at a local scale, among six forest habitat types. We detected 25 bird species; avifauna composition was significantly different among habitat types, with five species accounting for 60 % of the dissimilarity. We found a higher level of bird assemblage differentiation across habitats at the local scale than has been found at the country-size scale. Such differentiation might be attributed to structural differences among habitats.

  11. Does bird species diversity vary among forest types? A local-scale test in southern Chile.

    PubMed

    Fontúrbel, Francisco E; Jiménez, Jaime E

    2014-10-01

    Birds are the most diverse vertebrate group in Chile, characterized by low species turnover at the country-size scale (high alpha but low beta diversities), resembling an island biota. We tested whether this low differentiation is valid at a local scale, among six forest habitat types. We detected 25 bird species; avifauna composition was significantly different among habitat types, with five species accounting for 60% of the dissimilarity. We found a higher level of bird assemblage differentiation across habitats at the local scale than has been found at the country-size scale. Such differentiation might be attributed to structural differences among habitats.

  12. Structure of bird communities in eucalyptus plantations: nestedness as a pattern of species distribution.

    PubMed

    Jacoboski, L I; Mendonça-Lima, A de; Hartz, S M

    2016-04-19

    Replacement of native habitats by tree plantations has increased dramatically in Brazil, resulting in loss of structural components for birds, such as appropriate substrates for foraging and nesting. Tree plantations can also reduce faunal richness and change the composition of bird species. This study evaluated the structure of avian communities in eucalyptus plantations of different ages and in a native forest. We classified species as habitat specialists or generalists, and assessed if the species found in eucalyptus plantations are a subset of the species that occur in the native forest. Forty-one sampling sites were evaluated, with three point counts each, in a native forest and in eucalyptus plantations of four different ages. A total of 71 bird species were identified. Species richness and abundance were higher in the native forest, reflecting the greater heterogeneity of the habitat. The composition of bird species also differed between the native forest and plantations. The species recorded in the plantations represented a subset of the species of the native forest, with a predominance of generalist species. These species are more tolerant of habitat changes and are able to use the plantations. The commercial plantations studied here can serve as a main or occasional habitat for these generalists, especially for those that are semi-dependent on edge and forest. The bird species most affected by silviculture are those that are typical of open grasslands, and those that are highly dependent on well-preserved forests.

  13. Structure of bird communities in eucalyptus plantations: nestedness as a pattern of species distribution.

    PubMed

    Jacoboski, L I; Mendonça-Lima, A de; Hartz, S M

    2016-04-19

    Replacement of native habitats by tree plantations has increased dramatically in Brazil, resulting in loss of structural components for birds, such as appropriate substrates for foraging and nesting. Tree plantations can also reduce faunal richness and change the composition of bird species. This study evaluated the structure of avian communities in eucalyptus plantations of different ages and in a native forest. We classified species as habitat specialists or generalists, and assessed if the species found in eucalyptus plantations are a subset of the species that occur in the native forest. Forty-one sampling sites were evaluated, with three point counts each, in a native forest and in eucalyptus plantations of four different ages. A total of 71 bird species were identified. Species richness and abundance were higher in the native forest, reflecting the greater heterogeneity of the habitat. The composition of bird species also differed between the native forest and plantations. The species recorded in the plantations represented a subset of the species of the native forest, with a predominance of generalist species. These species are more tolerant of habitat changes and are able to use the plantations. The commercial plantations studied here can serve as a main or occasional habitat for these generalists, especially for those that are semi-dependent on edge and forest. The bird species most affected by silviculture are those that are typical of open grasslands, and those that are highly dependent on well-preserved forests. PMID:27097097

  14. Pollinator shifts drive petal epidermal evolution on the Macaronesian Islands bird-flowered species.

    PubMed

    Ojeda, Dario I; Valido, Alfredo; Fernández de Castro, Alejandro G; Ortega-Olivencia, Ana; Fuertes-Aguilar, Javier; Carvalho, José A; Santos-Guerra, Arnoldo

    2016-04-01

    Pollinator shifts are considered to drive floral trait evolution, yet little is still known about the modifications of petal epidermal surface at a biogeographic region scale. Here we investigated how independent shifts from insects to passerine birds in the Macaronesian Islands consistently modified this floral trait (i.e. absence of papillate cells). Using current phylogenies and extensive evidence from field observations, we selected a total of 81 plant species and subspecies for petal microscopy and comparative analysis, including 19 of the 23 insular species pollinated by opportunistic passerine birds (Macaronesian bird-flowered element). Species relying on passerine birds as the most effective pollinators (bird-pollinated) independently evolved at least five times and in all instances associated with a loss of papillate cells, whereas species with a mixed pollination system (birds plus insects and/or other vertebrates) evolved at least five times in Macaronesia and papillate cells were lost in only 25% of these transitions. Our findings suggest that petal micromorphology is a labile trait during pollinator shifts and that papillate cells tend to be absent on those species where pollinators have limited mechanical interaction with flowers, including opportunistic passerine birds that forage by hovering or from the ground. PMID:27122008

  15. Determinants of Mammal and Bird Species Richness in China Based on Habitat Groups.

    PubMed

    Xu, Haigen; Cao, Mingchang; Wu, Jun; Cai, Lei; Ding, Hui; Lei, Juncheng; Wu, Yi; Cui, Peng; Chen, Lian; Le, Zhifang; Cao, Yun

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the spatial patterns in species richness is a central issue in macroecology and biogeography. Analyses that have traditionally focused on overall species richness limit the generality and depth of inference. Spatial patterns of species richness and the mechanisms that underpin them in China remain poorly documented. We created a database of the distribution of 580 mammal species and 849 resident bird species from 2376 counties in China and established spatial linear models to identify the determinants of species richness and test the roles of five hypotheses for overall mammals and resident birds and the 11 habitat groups among the two taxa. Our result showed that elevation variability was the most important determinant of species richness of overall mammal and bird species. It is indicated that the most prominent predictors of species richness varied among different habitat groups: elevation variability for forest and shrub mammals and birds, temperature annual range for grassland and desert mammals and wetland birds, net primary productivity for farmland mammals, maximum temperature of the warmest month for cave mammals, and precipitation of the driest quarter for grassland and desert birds. Noteworthily, main land cover type was also found to obviously influence mammal and bird species richness in forests, shrubs and wetlands under the disturbance of intensified human activities. Our findings revealed a substantial divergence in the species richness patterns among different habitat groups and highlighted the group-specific and disparate environmental associations that underpin them. As we demonstrate, a focus on overall species richness alone might lead to incomplete or misguided understanding of spatial patterns. Conservation priorities that consider a broad spectrum of habitat groups will be more successful in safeguarding the multiple services of biodiversity. PMID:26629903

  16. Determinants of Mammal and Bird Species Richness in China Based on Habitat Groups

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Haigen; Cao, Mingchang; Wu, Jun; Cai, Lei; Ding, Hui; Lei, Juncheng; Wu, Yi; Cui, Peng; Chen, Lian; Le, Zhifang; Cao, Yun

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the spatial patterns in species richness is a central issue in macroecology and biogeography. Analyses that have traditionally focused on overall species richness limit the generality and depth of inference. Spatial patterns of species richness and the mechanisms that underpin them in China remain poorly documented. We created a database of the distribution of 580 mammal species and 849 resident bird species from 2376 counties in China and established spatial linear models to identify the determinants of species richness and test the roles of five hypotheses for overall mammals and resident birds and the 11 habitat groups among the two taxa. Our result showed that elevation variability was the most important determinant of species richness of overall mammal and bird species. It is indicated that the most prominent predictors of species richness varied among different habitat groups: elevation variability for forest and shrub mammals and birds, temperature annual range for grassland and desert mammals and wetland birds, net primary productivity for farmland mammals, maximum temperature of the warmest month for cave mammals, and precipitation of the driest quarter for grassland and desert birds. Noteworthily, main land cover type was also found to obviously influence mammal and bird species richness in forests, shrubs and wetlands under the disturbance of intensified human activities. Our findings revealed a substantial divergence in the species richness patterns among different habitat groups and highlighted the group-specific and disparate environmental associations that underpin them. As we demonstrate, a focus on overall species richness alone might lead to incomplete or misguided understanding of spatial patterns. Conservation priorities that consider a broad spectrum of habitat groups will be more successful in safeguarding the multiple services of biodiversity. PMID:26629903

  17. Determinants of Mammal and Bird Species Richness in China Based on Habitat Groups.

    PubMed

    Xu, Haigen; Cao, Mingchang; Wu, Jun; Cai, Lei; Ding, Hui; Lei, Juncheng; Wu, Yi; Cui, Peng; Chen, Lian; Le, Zhifang; Cao, Yun

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the spatial patterns in species richness is a central issue in macroecology and biogeography. Analyses that have traditionally focused on overall species richness limit the generality and depth of inference. Spatial patterns of species richness and the mechanisms that underpin them in China remain poorly documented. We created a database of the distribution of 580 mammal species and 849 resident bird species from 2376 counties in China and established spatial linear models to identify the determinants of species richness and test the roles of five hypotheses for overall mammals and resident birds and the 11 habitat groups among the two taxa. Our result showed that elevation variability was the most important determinant of species richness of overall mammal and bird species. It is indicated that the most prominent predictors of species richness varied among different habitat groups: elevation variability for forest and shrub mammals and birds, temperature annual range for grassland and desert mammals and wetland birds, net primary productivity for farmland mammals, maximum temperature of the warmest month for cave mammals, and precipitation of the driest quarter for grassland and desert birds. Noteworthily, main land cover type was also found to obviously influence mammal and bird species richness in forests, shrubs and wetlands under the disturbance of intensified human activities. Our findings revealed a substantial divergence in the species richness patterns among different habitat groups and highlighted the group-specific and disparate environmental associations that underpin them. As we demonstrate, a focus on overall species richness alone might lead to incomplete or misguided understanding of spatial patterns. Conservation priorities that consider a broad spectrum of habitat groups will be more successful in safeguarding the multiple services of biodiversity.

  18. Drivers of Bird Species Richness within Moist High-Altitude Grasslands in Eastern South Africa

    PubMed Central

    Smit-Robinson, Hanneline; Underhill, Les G.; Altwegg, Res

    2016-01-01

    Moist high-altitude grasslands in South Africa are renowned for high avifaunal diversity and are priority areas for conservation. Conservation management of these areas conflicts with management for other uses, such as intensive livestock agriculture, which requires annual burning and leads to heavy grazing. Recently the area has become target for water storage schemes and renewable electricity energy projects. There is therefore an urgent need to investigate environmental factors and habitat factors that affect bird species richness in order to optimise management of those areas set aside for conservation. A particularly good opportunity to study these issues arose at Ingula in the eastern South African high-altitude grasslands. An area that had been subject to intense grazing was bought by the national power utility that constructed a pumped storage scheme on part of the land and set aside the rest for bird conservation. Since the new management took over in 2005 the area has been mostly annually burned with relatively little grazing. The new management seeks scientific advice on how to maintain avian species richness of the study area. We collected bird occurrence and vegetation data along random transects between 2006 and 2010 to monitor the impact of the new management, and to study the effect of the habitat changes on bird species richness. To achieve these, we convert bird transect data to presence only data to investigate how bird species richness were related to key transect vegetation attributes under this new grassland management. First we used generalised linear mixed models, to examine changes in vegetation grass height and cover and between burned and unburned habitats. Secondly, we examined how total bird species richness varied across seasons and years. And finally we investigated which habitat vegetation attributes were correlated with species richness of a group of grassland depended bird species only. Transects that were burned showed a larger

  19. Organochlorine residues in bird species collected dead in Ontario 1972-1988

    SciTech Connect

    Frank, R.; Braun, H.E. )

    1990-06-01

    Organochlorine residues have been reported in many species of birds found dead or shot around the Great Lakes Basin. Raptors and fish-eating birds have had very high residues in the past while terrestrial seed- and insect-eaters have had relatively low residues. Most of the organochlorine insecticides like DDT, aldrin, dieldrin, chlordane, endrin and heptachlor have been removed from field use, and controls have been placed on the dispersal of organochlorine industrial chemicals like mirex and PCB. These substances are very persistent. The major sources of contamination now are environmental residues picked up by birds in their normal feeding. These compounds bioaccumulate in bird species, and the highest residues accumulate at the top of the food chain. This paper is a compilation of data obtained from dead birds collected in the Great Lakes Basin over the last 16 years and analyzed for organochlorine contaminants.

  20. 78 FR 65955 - Migratory Bird Permits; Control Order for Introduced Migratory Bird Species in Hawaii

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-11-04

    ... Relations with Native American Tribal Governments'' (59 FR 22951), Executive Order 13175, and 512 DM 2, we... 2 asphyxiation. Any time that euthanasia of a bird is necessary, you must follow the American Veterinary Medical Association Guidelines on Euthanasia. (2) If you use a firearm to kill cattle egrets...

  1. Occupancy dynamics in a tropical bird community: unexpectedly high forest use by birds classified as non-forest species

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ruiz-Gutierrez, Viviana; Zipkin, Elise F.; Dhondt, Andre A.

    2010-01-01

    1. Worldwide loss of biodiversity necessitates a clear understanding of the factors driving population declines as well as informed predictions about which species and populations are at greatest risk. The biggest threat to the long-term persistence of populations is the reduction and changes in configuration of their natural habitat. 2. Inconsistencies have been noted in the responses of populations to the combined effects of habitat loss and fragmentation. These have been widely attributed to the effects of the matrix habitats in which remnant focal habitats are typically embedded. 3. We quantified the potential effects of the inter-patch matrix by estimating occupancy and colonization of forest and surrounding non-forest matrix (NF). We estimated species-specific parameters using a dynamic, multi-species hierarchical model on a bird community in southwestern Costa Rica. 4. Overall, we found higher probabilities of occupancy and colonization of forest relative to the NF across bird species, including those previously categorized as open habitat generalists not needing forest to persist. Forest dependency was a poor predictor of occupancy dynamics in our study region, largely predicting occupancy and colonization of only non-forest habitats. 5. Our results indicate that the protection of remnant forest habitats is key for the long-term persistence of all members of the bird community in this fragmented landscape, including species typically associated with open, non-forest habitats. 6.Synthesis and applications. We identified 39 bird species of conservation concern defined by having high estimates of forest occupancy, and low estimates of occupancy and colonization of non-forest. These species survive in forest but are unlikely to venture out into open, non-forested habitats, therefore, they are vulnerable to the effects of habitat loss and fragmentation. Our hierarchical community-level model can be used to estimate species-specific occupancy dynamics for focal

  2. SITE CHARACTERIZATION USING BIRD SPECIES COMPOSITION IN EASTERN OREGON, USA

    EPA Science Inventory

    We conducted riparian bird surveys at 25 randomly selected stream reaches in the John Day River Basin of eastern Oregon as part of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Environmental Monitoring and Assessment Program (EMAP). At each reach along a kilometer-length transect, ...

  3. A revision of the family Cerococcidae Balachowsky (Hemiptera: Sternorrhyncha, Coccomorpha) with particular reference to species from the Afrotropical, western Palaearctic and western Oriental Regions, with the revival of Antecerococcus Green and description of a new genus and fifteen new species, and with ten new synonomies.

    PubMed

    Hodgson, Chris J; Williams, Douglas J

    2016-01-01

    The scale insect family Cerococcidae (Hemiptera: Coccomorpha) or false pit scales was last revised during the 1970s and 1980s. At that time, it included three genera, Asterococcus Borchsenius, Cerococcus Comstock and Solenophora Maskell, and a total of 69 species. The present revision concentrates on species known from the western Palaearctic, western Oriental and Afrotropical Regions but includes notes on all known cerococcid species. Within the three geographical areas principally studied here, all known species are described and illustrated based on the adult females, including 13 new species. During this study, a new morphological character was discovered on the venter of the anal lobes that is taxonomically important and which is referred to as the anteroventral sclerotization. It was found that the anteroventral sclerotization was present in most species from the main study areas, but was absent from all species in the Nearctic and from many in the Australasian and Neotropical Regions as well. As the type species of Cerococcus is C. quercus Comstock from the Nearctic, the genus Antecerococcus Green, revived status (type species Cerococcus punctiferus Green) was resurrected to take all species with an anteroventral sclerotization. Resurrection of Antecerococcus means that names of genera previously synonymised with Cerococcus are now junior synonyms of Antecerococcus, e.g., Phenacobryum Cockerell, syn. nov., Amelococcus Marchal, syn. nov., Cercococcus Scott, syn. nov. and Coricoccus Mahdihassan, syn. nov. As a range of other characters also were found to support this division (such as absence of setae along inner margin of each anal lobe and presence of a ventral seta posteriorly on each lobe), the genera in Cerococcidae can be divided into two groups, those with an anteroventral sclerotization (Antecerococcus and probably Solenophora) and those without (Asterococcus and Cerococcus). As part of this revision, it was found necessary to consider the

  4. A revision of the family Cerococcidae Balachowsky (Hemiptera: Sternorrhyncha, Coccomorpha) with particular reference to species from the Afrotropical, western Palaearctic and western Oriental Regions, with the revival of Antecerococcus Green and description of a new genus and fifteen new species, and with ten new synonomies.

    PubMed

    Hodgson, Chris J; Williams, Douglas J

    2016-03-14

    The scale insect family Cerococcidae (Hemiptera: Coccomorpha) or false pit scales was last revised during the 1970s and 1980s. At that time, it included three genera, Asterococcus Borchsenius, Cerococcus Comstock and Solenophora Maskell, and a total of 69 species. The present revision concentrates on species known from the western Palaearctic, western Oriental and Afrotropical Regions but includes notes on all known cerococcid species. Within the three geographical areas principally studied here, all known species are described and illustrated based on the adult females, including 13 new species. During this study, a new morphological character was discovered on the venter of the anal lobes that is taxonomically important and which is referred to as the anteroventral sclerotization. It was found that the anteroventral sclerotization was present in most species from the main study areas, but was absent from all species in the Nearctic and from many in the Australasian and Neotropical Regions as well. As the type species of Cerococcus is C. quercus Comstock from the Nearctic, the genus Antecerococcus Green, revived status (type species Cerococcus punctiferus Green) was resurrected to take all species with an anteroventral sclerotization. Resurrection of Antecerococcus means that names of genera previously synonymised with Cerococcus are now junior synonyms of Antecerococcus, e.g., Phenacobryum Cockerell, syn. nov., Amelococcus Marchal, syn. nov., Cercococcus Scott, syn. nov. and Coricoccus Mahdihassan, syn. nov. As a range of other characters also were found to support this division (such as absence of setae along inner margin of each anal lobe and presence of a ventral seta posteriorly on each lobe), the genera in Cerococcidae can be divided into two groups, those with an anteroventral sclerotization (Antecerococcus and probably Solenophora) and those without (Asterococcus and Cerococcus). As part of this revision, it was found necessary to consider the

  5. Breeding distributions of north American bird species moving north as a result of climate change.

    PubMed

    Hitch, Alan T; Leberg, Paul L

    2007-04-01

    Geographic changes in species distributions toward traditionally cooler climes is one hypothesized indicator of recent global climate change. We examined distribution data on 56 bird species. If global warming is affecting species distributions across the temperate northern hemisphere, these data should show the same northward range expansions of birds that have been reported for Great Britain. Because a northward shift of distributions might be due to multidirectional range expansions for multiple species, we also examined the possibility that birds with northern distributions may be expanding their ranges southward. There was no southward expansion of birds with a northern distribution, indicating that there is no evidence of overall range expansion of insectivorous and granivorous birds in North America. As predicted, the northern limit of birds with a southern distribution showed a significant shift northward (2.35 km/year). This northward shift is similar to that observed in previous work conducted in Great Britain: the widespread nature of this shift in species distributions over two distinct geographical regions and its coincidence with a period of global warming suggests a connection with global climate change.

  6. DNA Barcoding to Improve the Taxonomy of the Afrotropical Hoverflies (Insecta: Diptera: Syrphidae)

    PubMed Central

    Jordaens, Kurt; Goergen, Georg; Virgilio, Massimiliano; Backeljau, Thierry; Vokaer, Audrey; De Meyer, Marc

    2015-01-01

    The identification of Afrotropical hoverflies is very difficult because of limited recent taxonomic revisions and the lack of comprehensive identification keys. In order to assist in their identification, and to improve the taxonomy of this group, we constructed a reference dataset of 513 COI barcodes of 90 of the more common nominal species from Ghana, Togo, Benin and Nigeria (W Africa) and added ten publically available COI barcodes from nine nominal Afrotropical species to this (total: 523 COI barcodes; 98 nominal species; 26 genera). The identification accuracy of this dataset was evaluated with three methods (K2P distance-based, Neighbor-Joining (NJ) / Maximum Likelihood (ML) analysis, and using SpeciesIdentifier). Results of the three methods were highly congruent and showed a high identification success. Nine species pairs showed a low (< 0.03) mean interspecific K2P distance that resulted in several incorrect identifications. A high (> 0.03) maximum intraspecific K2P distance was observed in eight species and barcodes of these species not always formed single clusters in the NJ / ML analayses which may indicate the occurrence of cryptic species. Optimal K2P thresholds to differentiate intra- from interspecific K2P divergence were highly different among the three subfamilies (Eristalinae: 0.037, Syrphinae: 0.06, Microdontinae: 0.007–0.02), and among the different general suggesting that optimal thresholds are better defined at the genus level. In addition to providing an alternative identification tool, our study indicates that DNA barcoding improves the taxonomy of Afrotropical hoverflies by selecting (groups of) taxa that deserve further taxonomic study, and by attributing the unknown sex to species for which only one of the sexes is known. PMID:26473612

  7. Re-shuffling of species with climate disruption: a no-analog future for California birds?

    PubMed

    Stralberg, Diana; Jongsomjit, Dennis; Howell, Christine A; Snyder, Mark A; Alexander, John D; Wiens, John A; Root, Terry L

    2009-09-02

    By facilitating independent shifts in species' distributions, climate disruption may result in the rapid development of novel species assemblages that challenge the capacity of species to co-exist and adapt. We used a multivariate approach borrowed from paleoecology to quantify the potential change in California terrestrial breeding bird communities based on current and future species-distribution models for 60 focal species. Projections of future no-analog communities based on two climate models and two species-distribution-model algorithms indicate that by 2070 over half of California could be occupied by novel assemblages of bird species, implying the potential for dramatic community reshuffling and altered patterns of species interactions. The expected percentage of no-analog bird communities was dependent on the community scale examined, but consistent geographic patterns indicated several locations that are particularly likely to host novel bird communities in the future. These no-analog areas did not always coincide with areas of greatest projected species turnover. Efforts to conserve and manage biodiversity could be substantially improved by considering not just future changes in the distribution of individual species, but including the potential for unprecedented changes in community composition and unanticipated consequences of novel species assemblages.

  8. Cryptic diversity revealed by DNA barcoding in Colombian illegally traded bird species.

    PubMed

    Mendoza, Ángela María; Torres, María Fernanda; Paz, Andrea; Trujillo-Arias, Natalia; López-Alvarez, Diana; Sierra, Socorro; Forero, Fernando; Gonzalez, Mailyn A

    2016-07-01

    Colombia is the country with the largest number of bird species worldwide, yet its avifauna is seriously threatened by habitat degradation and poaching. We built a DNA barcode library of nearly half of the bird species listed in the CITES appendices for Colombia, thereby constructing a species identification reference that will help in global efforts for controlling illegal species trade. We obtained the COI barcode sequence of 151 species based on 281 samples, representing 46% of CITES bird species registered for Colombia. The species analysed belong to nine families, where Trochilidae and Psittacidae are the most abundant ones. We sequenced for the first time the DNA barcode of 47 species, mainly hummingbirds endemic of the Northern Andes region. We found a correct match between morphological and genetic identification for 86-92% of the species analysed, depending on the cluster analysis performed (BIN, ABGD and TaxonDNA). Additionally, we identified eleven cases of high intraspecific divergence based on K2P genetic distances (up to 14.61%) that could reflect cryptic diversity. In these cases, the specimens were collected in geographically distant sites such as different mountain systems, opposite flanks of the mountain or different elevations. Likewise, we found two cases of possible hybridization and incomplete lineage sorting. This survey constitutes the first attempt to build the DNA barcode library of endangered bird species in Colombia establishing as a reference for management programs of illegal species trade, and providing major insights of phylogeographic structure that can guide future taxonomic research. PMID:26929271

  9. The North American Breeding Bird Survey 1966–2011: Summary analysis and species accounts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sauer, John R.; Link, William A.; Fallon, Jane E.; Pardieck, Keith L.; Ziolkowski, David J.

    2013-01-01

    The North American Breeding Bird Survey is a roadside, count-based survey conducted by volunteer observers. Begun in 1966, it now is a primary source of information on spatial and temporal patterns of population change for North American birds. We analyze population change for states, provinces, Bird Conservation Regions, and the entire survey within the contiguous United States and southern Canada for 426 species using a hierarchical log-linear model that controls for observer effects in counting. We also map relative abundance and population change for each species using a spatial smoothing of data at the scale of survey routes. We present results in accounts that describe major breeding habitats, migratory status, conservation status, and population trends for each species at several geographic scales. We also present composite results for groups of species categorized by habitats and migratory status. The survey varies greatly among species in percentage of species' range covered and precision of results, but consistent patterns of decline occur among eastern forest, grassland, and aridland obligate birds while generalist bird species are increasing.

  10. Geographic differences between functional groups in patterns of bird species richness in North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carnicer, Jofre; Díaz-Delgado, Ricardo

    2008-03-01

    Geographic divergences in patterns of species richness were studied for the terrestrial birds of North America using Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) census data subdivided for guild and migratory groups. Our aim was to study if species richness patterns for North American birds were best viewed as the convergent response of different groups to a common mechanism or as the result of several different processes. We observed opposite geographical patterns of species richness and differences in the variables associated with species richness depending on the guild or migratory status considered. Several ecological variables seem to regulate large-scale patterns of terrestrial bird species richness in North America, mainly temperature-, productivity- and landscape habitat structure-related variables. These variables are diverse and group-specific. For instance, the results supported the productivity hypothesis in migratory and frugivore groups and the winter tolerance hypothesis in residents. Habitat structure was also identified as an important factor driving species richness, total abundance and community body mass variation. Overall, our results indicate that the large-scale patterns of bird species richness are the result of several divergent, group-specific processes, and that understanding diversity gradients requires the identification of the functional ecological groups included.

  11. Focal bird species and risk assessment approach for nonagricultural grassland scenarios in Central Europe.

    PubMed

    Schabacker, Jens; Gerlach, Jochen; Münderle, Marcel; Dietzen, Christian; Ludwigs, Jan-Dieter

    2014-09-01

    The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) guideline on risk assessment identifies pesticide exposure scenarios for nontarget wildlife; however, this scheme is not applicable to nonagricultural grassland. For example, different habitats and human utilization on golf courses attract bird communities that differ from those found in agricultural fields with annual crop cycles. The present study determined focal bird species for amenity grasslands such as golf courses following the EFSA guideline. Based on published data and bird surveys, a total of 102 species were found on 13 golf courses in Central Europe. Approximately 58% of the species were recorded on >20% of the golf course and were classified as focal species candidates. Common kestrel (Falco tinnunculus), common linnet (Carduelis cannabina), wood pigeon (Columba palumbus), yellowhammer (Emberiza citrinella), white wagtail (Motacilla alba), and gray heron (Ardea cinerea) are the most adequate candidate focal species for exposure scenarios of carnivorous, granivorous, herbivorous, omnivorous, insectivorous, and piscivorous birds, respectively. Candidate species were verified on 3 golf courses in southwestern Germany in spring 2012. Observations on feeding behavior identified the main foraging areas of focal species. The results of the field work combined with data from the literature identified reliable exposure scenarios to assess the risk of pesticides to birds found on golf courses.

  12. Dangers of predicting bird species distributions in response to land-cover changes.

    PubMed

    Vallecillo, Sara; Brotons, Lluís; Thuiller, Wilfried

    2009-03-01

    Land-cover changes from the last decades are leading to important declines in habitat quality, giving rise to changes in bird species distribution all over the world. However, land-cover changes result from a variety of different processes, and it is not clear how effective species distribution models are in capturing species responses to these changes. In this study, we evaluated our ability to predict the effects of land-cover changes on shifts in species distributions at large spatial and temporal scales using Mediterranean landscapes and early-successional, open-habitat birds as study models. Based on presence-absence data from the second Catalan Breeding Bird Atlas (1999-2002), we applied six different species distribution modeling techniques for 10 bird species using climate, topographic, and land-cover data as predictor variables. Then we back-projected the models on land-cover conditions from 1980 to evaluate the projections with field observation data from the first Catalan Breeding Bird Atlas (1975-1983). Finally, we assessed if, in addition to changes in habitat suitability resulting from land-cover shifts, descriptors of fire impact contributed to further explain species distribution dynamics: colonization and local extinction. We developed accurate model projections of current and past global patterns of species distribution, but our ability to predict species distribution dynamics was reduced. Colonization dynamics were generally more strongly related to fire descriptors than to changes in overall habitat suitability derived from land-cover changes. Our results warn of the dangers of projecting species distribution models onto future conditions if processes behind species distribution dynamics are not explicitly included. Consideration of ecologically meaningful processes for species (i.e., fire disturbance) when modeling species' distribution might contribute to a better explanation of species' colonization dynamics.

  13. Host records for fruit-feeding Afrotropical Tortricidae (Lepidoptera)

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    We present host records for the following Afrotropical Tortricidae reared from fruit in Kenya: Idiothauma nr africanum Walsingham, Paraccra mimesa Razowski, Apotoforma nr uncifera Razowski, Eugnosta percnoptila (Meyrick), Phtheochroa aarviki Razowski & Brown, Actihema hemiacta (Meyrick, 1920), “Tort...

  14. Species richness and patterns of invasion in plants, birds, and fishes in the United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Stohlgren, Thomas J.; Barnett, David; Flather, Curtis; Fuller, Pam L.; Peterjohn, Bruce G.; Kartesz, John; Master, Lawrence L.

    2006-01-01

    We quantified broad-scale patterns of species richness and species density (mean # species/km2) for native and non-indigenous plants, birds, and fishes in the continental USA and Hawaii. We hypothesized that the species density of native and non-indigenous taxa would generally decrease in northern latitudes and higher elevations following declines in potential evapotranspiration, mean temperature, and precipitation. County data on plants (n = 3004 counties) and birds (n=3074 counties), and drainage (6 HUC) data on fishes (n = 328 drainages) showed that the densities of native and non-indigenous species were strongly positively correlated for plant species (r = 0.86, P < 0.0001), bird species (r = 0.93, P<0.0001), and fish species (r = 0.41, P<0.0001). Multiple regression models showed that the densities of native plant and bird species could be strongly predicted (adj. R2 = 0.66 in both models) at county levels, but fish species densities were less predictable at drainage levels (adj. R2 = 0.31,P<0.0001). Similarly, non-indigenous plant and bird species densities were strongly predictable (adj. R2 = 0.84 and 0.91 respectively), but non-indigenous fish species density was less predictable (adj. R2 = 0.38). County level hotspots of native and non-indigenous plants, birds, and fishes were located in low elevation areas close to the coast with high precipitation and productivity (vegetation carbon). We show that (1) native species richness can be moderately well predicted with abiotic factors; (2) human populations have tended to settle in areas rich in native species; and (3) the richness and density of non-indigenous plant, bird, and fish species can be accurately predicted from biotic and abiotic factors largely because they are positively correlated to native species densities. We conclude that while humans facilitate the initial establishment, invasions of non-indigenous species, the spread and subsequent distributions of non-indigenous species may be controlled

  15. The influence of habitat structure on bird species composition in lowland malaysian rain forests.

    PubMed

    Mansor, Mohammad Saiful; Sah, Shahrul Anuar Mohd

    2012-05-01

    Bird surveys were conducted in the Bukit Kepala Gajah limestone area in Lenggong, Perak from July 2010 to January 2011. The study area was divided into three zones: forest edge, forest intermediate and forest interior. A point-count distance sampling method was used in the bird surveys. The study recorded 7789 detections, representing 100 bird species belonging to 28 families. Pycnonotidae, Timaliidae and Nectariniidae were the dominant families overall and showed the highest number of observations recorded in the study area whereas Motacillidae showed the fewest observations. The bird species were grouped into three feeding guilds: insectivores, frugivores and others (omnivores, carnivores, nectarivores and granivores). The species richness of insectivorous birds differed significantly among the forest zones sampled (Kruskal-Wallis: α=0.05, H=10.979, d.f.=2, p=0.004), with more insectivorous birds occurring in the forest interior. No significant differences were found among the zones in the species richness of either the frugivore guild or the composite others guild.

  16. The Influence of Habitat Structure on Bird Species Composition in Lowland Malaysian Rain Forests

    PubMed Central

    Mansor, Mohammad Saiful; Sah, Shahrul Anuar Mohd

    2012-01-01

    Bird surveys were conducted in the Bukit Kepala Gajah limestone area in Lenggong, Perak from July 2010 to January 2011. The study area was divided into three zones: forest edge, forest intermediate and forest interior. A point-count distance sampling method was used in the bird surveys. The study recorded 7789 detections, representing 100 bird species belonging to 28 families. Pycnonotidae, Timaliidae and Nectariniidae were the dominant families overall and showed the highest number of observations recorded in the study area whereas Motacillidae showed the fewest observations. The bird species were grouped into three feeding guilds: insectivores, frugivores and others (omnivores, carnivores, nectarivores and granivores). The species richness of insectivorous birds differed significantly among the forest zones sampled (Kruskal-Wallis: α=0.05, H=10.979, d.f.=2, p=0.004), with more insectivorous birds occurring in the forest interior. No significant differences were found among the zones in the species richness of either the frugivore guild or the composite others guild. PMID:24575221

  17. Organochlorine pesticides in bird species and their prey (fish) from the Ethiopian Rift Valley region, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Yohannes, Yared Beyene; Ikenaka, Yoshinori; Nakayama, Shouta M M; Ishizuka, Mayumi

    2014-09-01

    Organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) and stable isotopes were measured in muscle from 4 bird and 5 fish species from the Ethiopian Rift Valley region where DDT is used for malaria control and vast agricultural activities are carried out. We investigated the bioaccumulation of OCPs such as DDTs, HCHs, chlordanes, and heptachlors between the species, and examined the potential risk posed by these compounds for bird species. Significant differences in contaminant profiles and levels were observed within the species. Levels of total OCPs ranged from 3.7 to 148.7 μg/g lipid in bird and 0.04 to 10.9 μg/g lipid in fish species. DDTs were the predominant contaminant, and a positive relationship between δ(15)N and ΣDDT concentrations was found. The main DDT metabolite, p,p'-DDE was the most abundant and significantly greater concentrations in bird species (up to 138.5 μg/g lipid), which could have deleterious effects on survival and/or reproduction of birds. PMID:24907858

  18. Organochlorine pesticides in bird species and their prey (fish) from the Ethiopian Rift Valley region, Ethiopia.

    PubMed

    Yohannes, Yared Beyene; Ikenaka, Yoshinori; Nakayama, Shouta M M; Ishizuka, Mayumi

    2014-09-01

    Organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) and stable isotopes were measured in muscle from 4 bird and 5 fish species from the Ethiopian Rift Valley region where DDT is used for malaria control and vast agricultural activities are carried out. We investigated the bioaccumulation of OCPs such as DDTs, HCHs, chlordanes, and heptachlors between the species, and examined the potential risk posed by these compounds for bird species. Significant differences in contaminant profiles and levels were observed within the species. Levels of total OCPs ranged from 3.7 to 148.7 μg/g lipid in bird and 0.04 to 10.9 μg/g lipid in fish species. DDTs were the predominant contaminant, and a positive relationship between δ(15)N and ΣDDT concentrations was found. The main DDT metabolite, p,p'-DDE was the most abundant and significantly greater concentrations in bird species (up to 138.5 μg/g lipid), which could have deleterious effects on survival and/or reproduction of birds.

  19. Environmental Gradients Explain Species Richness and Community Composition of Coastal Breeding Birds in the Baltic Sea

    PubMed Central

    Nord, Maria; Forslund, Pär

    2015-01-01

    Scientifically-based systematic conservation planning for reserve design requires knowledge of species richness patterns and how these are related to environmental gradients. In this study, we explore a large inventory of coastal breeding birds, in total 48 species, sampled in 4646 1 km2 squares which covered a large archipelago in the Baltic Sea on the east coast of Sweden. We analysed how species richness (α diversity) and community composition (β diversity) of two groups of coastal breeding birds (specialists, i.e. obligate coastal breeders; generalists, i.e. facultative coastal breeders) were affected by distance to open sea, land area, shoreline length and archipelago width. The total number of species per square increased with increasing shoreline length, but increasing land area counteracted this effect in specialists. The number of specialist bird species per square increased with decreasing distance to open sea, while the opposite was true for the generalists. Differences in community composition between squares were associated with differences in land area and distance to open sea, both when considering all species pooled and each group separately. Fourteen species were nationally red-listed, and showed similar relationships to the environmental gradients as did all species, specialists and generalists. We suggest that availability of suitable breeding habitats, and probably also proximity to feeding areas, explain much of the observed spatial distributions of coastal birds in this study. Our findings have important implications for systematic conservation planning of coastal breeding birds. In particular, we provide information on where coastal breeding birds occur and which environments they seem to prefer. Small land areas with long shorelines are highly valuable both in general and for red-listed species. Thus, such areas should be prioritized for protection against human disturbance and used by management in reserve selection. PMID:25714432

  20. Environmental gradients explain species richness and community composition of coastal breeding birds in the Baltic Sea.

    PubMed

    Nord, Maria; Forslund, Pär

    2015-01-01

    Scientifically-based systematic conservation planning for reserve design requires knowledge of species richness patterns and how these are related to environmental gradients. In this study, we explore a large inventory of coastal breeding birds, in total 48 species, sampled in 4646 1 km2 squares which covered a large archipelago in the Baltic Sea on the east coast of Sweden. We analysed how species richness (α diversity) and community composition (β diversity) of two groups of coastal breeding birds (specialists, i.e. obligate coastal breeders; generalists, i.e. facultative coastal breeders) were affected by distance to open sea, land area, shoreline length and archipelago width. The total number of species per square increased with increasing shoreline length, but increasing land area counteracted this effect in specialists. The number of specialist bird species per square increased with decreasing distance to open sea, while the opposite was true for the generalists. Differences in community composition between squares were associated with differences in land area and distance to open sea, both when considering all species pooled and each group separately. Fourteen species were nationally red-listed, and showed similar relationships to the environmental gradients as did all species, specialists and generalists. We suggest that availability of suitable breeding habitats, and probably also proximity to feeding areas, explain much of the observed spatial distributions of coastal birds in this study. Our findings have important implications for systematic conservation planning of coastal breeding birds. In particular, we provide information on where coastal breeding birds occur and which environments they seem to prefer. Small land areas with long shorelines are highly valuable both in general and for red-listed species. Thus, such areas should be prioritized for protection against human disturbance and used by management in reserve selection.

  1. Environmental gradients explain species richness and community composition of coastal breeding birds in the Baltic Sea.

    PubMed

    Nord, Maria; Forslund, Pär

    2015-01-01

    Scientifically-based systematic conservation planning for reserve design requires knowledge of species richness patterns and how these are related to environmental gradients. In this study, we explore a large inventory of coastal breeding birds, in total 48 species, sampled in 4646 1 km2 squares which covered a large archipelago in the Baltic Sea on the east coast of Sweden. We analysed how species richness (α diversity) and community composition (β diversity) of two groups of coastal breeding birds (specialists, i.e. obligate coastal breeders; generalists, i.e. facultative coastal breeders) were affected by distance to open sea, land area, shoreline length and archipelago width. The total number of species per square increased with increasing shoreline length, but increasing land area counteracted this effect in specialists. The number of specialist bird species per square increased with decreasing distance to open sea, while the opposite was true for the generalists. Differences in community composition between squares were associated with differences in land area and distance to open sea, both when considering all species pooled and each group separately. Fourteen species were nationally red-listed, and showed similar relationships to the environmental gradients as did all species, specialists and generalists. We suggest that availability of suitable breeding habitats, and probably also proximity to feeding areas, explain much of the observed spatial distributions of coastal birds in this study. Our findings have important implications for systematic conservation planning of coastal breeding birds. In particular, we provide information on where coastal breeding birds occur and which environments they seem to prefer. Small land areas with long shorelines are highly valuable both in general and for red-listed species. Thus, such areas should be prioritized for protection against human disturbance and used by management in reserve selection. PMID:25714432

  2. Annotated catalogue of the Tachinidae (Insecta, Diptera) of the Afrotropical Region, with the description of seven new genera.

    PubMed

    O'Hara, James E; Cerretti, Pierfilippo

    2016-01-01

    The Tachinidae of the Afrotropical Region are catalogued and seven genera and eight species are newly described. There are 237 genera and 1126 species recognized, of which 101 genera and 1043 species are endemic to the region. The catalogue is based on examination of the primary literature comprising about 525 references as well as numerous name-bearing types and other specimens housed in collections. Taxa are arranged hierarchically and alphabetically under the categories of subfamily, tribe, genus, subgenus (where recognized), species, and rarely subspecies. Nomenclatural information is provided for all genus-group and species-group names, including lists of synonyms (mostly restricted to Afrotropical taxa) and name-bearing type data. Species distributions are recorded by country within the Afrotropical Region and by larger geographical divisions outside the region. Additional information is given in the form of notes, numbering about 300 in the catalogue section. Seven genera and eight species are described as new: Afrophylax Cerretti & O'Hara with type species Sturmia aureiventris Villeneuve, 1910, gen. n. (Exoristinae, Eryciini); Austrosolieria Cerretti & O'Hara with type species Austrosolieria londti Cerretti & O'Hara, gen. n. and sp. n. (South Africa) and Austrosolieria freidbergi Cerretti & O'Hara, sp. n. (Malawi) (Tachininae, Leskiini); Carceliathrix Cerretti & O'Hara with type species Phorocera crassipalpis Villeneuve, 1938, gen. n. (Exoristinae, Eryciini); Filistea Cerretti & O'Hara with type species Viviania aureofasciata Curran, 1927, gen. n. and Filistea verbekei Cerretti & O'Hara, sp. n. (Cameroon, D.R. Congo, Uganda) (Exoristinae, Blondeliini); Mesnilotrix Cerretti & O'Hara with type species Dexiotrix empiformis Mesnil, 1976, gen. n. (Dexiinae, Dexiini); Myxophryxe Cerretti & O'Hara with type species Phorocera longirostris Villeneuve, 1938, gen. n., Myxophryxe murina Cerretti & O'Hara, sp. n. (South Africa), Myxophryxe regalis Cerretti & O'Hara, sp

  3. Annotated catalogue of the Tachinidae (Insecta, Diptera) of the Afrotropical Region, with the description of seven new genera

    PubMed Central

    O’Hara, James E.; Cerretti, Pierfilippo

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The Tachinidae of the Afrotropical Region are catalogued and seven genera and eight species are newly described. There are 237 genera and 1126 species recognized, of which 101 genera and 1043 species are endemic to the region. The catalogue is based on examination of the primary literature comprising about 525 references as well as numerous name-bearing types and other specimens housed in collections. Taxa are arranged hierarchically and alphabetically under the categories of subfamily, tribe, genus, subgenus (where recognized), species, and rarely subspecies. Nomenclatural information is provided for all genus-group and species-group names, including lists of synonyms (mostly restricted to Afrotropical taxa) and name-bearing type data. Species distributions are recorded by country within the Afrotropical Region and by larger geographical divisions outside the region. Additional information is given in the form of notes, numbering about 300 in the catalogue section. Seven genera and eight species are described as new: Afrophylax Cerretti & O’Hara with type species Sturmia aureiventris Villeneuve, 1910, gen. n. (Exoristinae, Eryciini); Austrosolieria Cerretti & O’Hara with type species Austrosolieria londti Cerretti & O’Hara, gen. n. and sp. n. (South Africa) and Austrosolieria freidbergi Cerretti & O’Hara, sp. n. (Malawi) (Tachininae, Leskiini); Carceliathrix Cerretti & O’Hara with type species Phorocera crassipalpis Villeneuve, 1938, gen. n. (Exoristinae, Eryciini); Filistea Cerretti & O’Hara with type species Viviania aureofasciata Curran, 1927, gen. n. and Filistea verbekei Cerretti & O’Hara, sp. n. (Cameroon, D.R. Congo, Uganda) (Exoristinae, Blondeliini); Mesnilotrix Cerretti & O’Hara with type species Dexiotrix empiformis Mesnil, 1976, gen. n. (Dexiinae, Dexiini); Myxophryxe Cerretti & O’Hara with type species Phorocera longirostris Villeneuve, 1938, gen. n., Myxophryxe murina Cerretti & O’Hara, sp. n. (South Africa), Myxophryxe

  4. Is there an optimum scale for predicting bird species' distribution in agricultural landscapes?

    PubMed

    Pelosi, Céline; Bonthoux, Sébastien; Castellarini, Fabiana; Goulard, Michel; Ladet, Sylvie; Balent, Gérard

    2014-04-01

    Changes in forest cover in agricultural landscapes affect biodiversity. Its management needs some indications about scale to predict occurrence of populations and communities. In this study we considered a forest cover index to predict bird species and community patterns in agricultural landscapes in south-western France. We used generalized linear models for that purpose with prediction driven by wooded areas' spatial distribution at nine different radii. Using 1064 point counts, we modelled the distribution of 10 bird species whose habitat preferences are spread along a landscape opening gradient. We also modelled the distribution of species richness for farmland species and for forest species. We used satellite images to construct a 'wood/non-wood' map and calculated a forest index, considering the surface area of wooded areas at nine radii from 110m to 910m. The models' predictive quality was determined by the AUC (for predicted presences) and ρ (for predicted species richness) criteria. We found that the forest cover was a good predictor of the distribution of seven bird species in agricultural landscapes (mean AUC for the seven species = 0.74 for the radius 110m). Species richness of farmland and forest birds was satisfactorily predicted by the models (ρ = 0.55 and 0.49, respectively, for the radius 110m). The presence of the studied species and species richness metrics were better predicted at smaller scales (i.e. radii between 110 m and 310 m) within the range tested. These results have implications for bird population management in agricultural landscapes since better pinpointing the scale to predict species distributions will enhance targeting efforts to be made in terms of landscape management.

  5. Review of Afrotropical Figitinae (Figitidae, Cynipoidea, Hymenoptera) with the first records of Neralsia and Lonchidia for the region

    PubMed Central

    van Noort, Simon; Buffington, Matthew L.; Forshage, Mattias

    2014-01-01

    Abstract The cynipoid subfamily Figitinae is poorly represented in the Afrotropical region with two genera (Figites Latreille and Xyalophora Kieffer) and six species currently known. Here we record an additional two genera (Neralsia Cameron and Lonchidia Thomson) for the region and describe three new species: Neralsia haddocki sp. n.; Xyalophora tedjoansi sp. n.; Xyalophora tintini sp. n. Benoit’s species described in 1956 are synonymized under Figites aciculatus (Benoit, 1956): Figites effossus syn. n.; Figites favonius syn. n.; Figites furvus syn. n.; Figites fraudator syn. n. Identification keys to the figitine genera and species occurring in the Afrotropical region are provided. Online interactive Lucid Phoenix and Lucid matrix keys are available at: http://www.waspweb.org/Cynipoidea/Keys/index.htm PMID:25493059

  6. Chewing lice (Phthiraptera) species of wild birds in northwestern Turkey with a new host record☆

    PubMed Central

    Girisgin, Ahmet Onur; Dik, Bilal; Girisgin, Oya

    2013-01-01

    The goal of this study was to identify the chewing lice species of migratory and non-migratory wild birds in the province of Bursa, which is located in northwestern Turkey, between August 2009 and November 2012. Sixty-eight birds brought to the animal hospital in need of medical intervention, which belonged to 25 species, 20 genera and 15 families in 10 orders, were examined for ectoparasites. To sample for the presence of chewing lice, an insecticide was pulverised on the feathers of each bird over a white piece of paper, and then all of the lice were collected and placed in tubes containing 70% alcohol. The lice specimens were cleared in 10% KOH for 24 h, mounted in Canada balsam and identified using a light microscope. Forty (58.8%) out of 68 birds examined were infested with at least one species of chewing lice, and a total of 29 lice species were found on the birds. This study represents the first documentation in Turkey of 9 of these lice species and also provides the first worldwide record of Degeeriella nisus on the Common buzzard (Buteo buteo). PMID:24533339

  7. Chewing lice (Phthiraptera) species of wild birds in northwestern Turkey with a new host record.

    PubMed

    Girisgin, Ahmet Onur; Dik, Bilal; Girisgin, Oya

    2013-12-01

    The goal of this study was to identify the chewing lice species of migratory and non-migratory wild birds in the province of Bursa, which is located in northwestern Turkey, between August 2009 and November 2012. Sixty-eight birds brought to the animal hospital in need of medical intervention, which belonged to 25 species, 20 genera and 15 families in 10 orders, were examined for ectoparasites. To sample for the presence of chewing lice, an insecticide was pulverised on the feathers of each bird over a white piece of paper, and then all of the lice were collected and placed in tubes containing 70% alcohol. The lice specimens were cleared in 10% KOH for 24 h, mounted in Canada balsam and identified using a light microscope. Forty (58.8%) out of 68 birds examined were infested with at least one species of chewing lice, and a total of 29 lice species were found on the birds. This study represents the first documentation in Turkey of 9 of these lice species and also provides the first worldwide record of Degeeriella nisus on the Common buzzard (Buteo buteo).

  8. [Bird species diversity and related protection measures in urban park green spaces of Loudi City, Hunan Province of China].

    PubMed

    Li, Yi-de; Liu, Ping-yuan; Gong, Xun-sheng; Xiao, Xiao-jun

    2013-08-01

    Urban park green space is an important physical part of urban ecosystem, and also, the important habitat and carrier for birds and other animals. Rapid urbanization induces the great change in the spatial pattern of urban park green space, while the patched distribution of urban park green space has the habitat features similar to 'habitat islands', giving obvious effects on urban avian communities. In order to understand the bird species distribution and species diversity in Loudi City and to provide the basic information for the bird conservation, a line transect method and a quadrat sampling method were adopted to investigate the distribution pattern and species richness of the birds across seven urban parks in the Loudi City from November, 2010 to January, 2012. A total of 56 birds species belonging to 11 orders and 27 families were recorded, among which, there were 32, 12 and 12 species belonging to resident birds, summer migrant birds and winter migrant birds, accounting for 57.2%, 21.4% and 21.4%, respectively. As for the fauna, there were 27, 14, and 15 bird species belonging to oriental species, palaearctic species and widely distributed species, accounting for 48.2%, 25.0% and 26.8%, respectively. A total of 7 species belonging to the second class of the national key protected species were recorded, accounting for 12.5% of the total. The Shannon, Pielou and G-F indices of the bird communities in the urban parks in Loudi City were 1.49, 0.85 and 0.62, respectively. Zhushan Park had the highest species number (42), Shannon index (1.41), G index (3.46), F index (6.12) and G-F index (0.43), and Yueqin Hill Park had the highest Pielou index (0.92). The reasons of the poor bird species in Loudi City were analyzed, and some suggestions for preventing the birds were put forward.

  9. Avian sensitivity to mortality: prioritising migratory bird species for assessment at proposed wind farms.

    PubMed

    Desholm, Mark

    2009-06-01

    Wind power generation is likely to constitute one of the most extensive human physical exploitation activities of European marine areas in the near future. The many millions of migrating birds that pass these man-made obstacles are protected by international obligations and the subject of public concerns. Yet some bird species are more sensitive to bird-wind turbine mortality than others. This study developed a simple and logical framework for ranking bird species with regard to their relative sensitivity to bird-wind turbine-collisions, and applied it to a data set comprising 38 avian migrant species at the Nysted offshore wind farm in Denmark. Two indicators were selected to characterize the sensitivity of each individual species: 1) relative abundance and 2) demographic sensitivity (elasticity of population growth rate to changes in adult survival). In the case-study from the Nysted offshore wind farm, birds of prey and waterbirds dominated the group of high priority species and only passerines showed a low risk of being impacted by the wind farm. Even where passerines might be present in very high numbers, they often represent insignificant segments of huge reference populations that, from a demographic point of view, are relatively insensitive to wind farm-related adult mortality. It will always be important to focus attention and direct the resources towards the most sensitive species to ensure cost-effective environmental assessments in the future, and in general, this novel index seems capable of identifying the species that are at high risk of being adversely affected by wind farms. PMID:19299065

  10. Avian sensitivity to mortality: prioritising migratory bird species for assessment at proposed wind farms.

    PubMed

    Desholm, Mark

    2009-06-01

    Wind power generation is likely to constitute one of the most extensive human physical exploitation activities of European marine areas in the near future. The many millions of migrating birds that pass these man-made obstacles are protected by international obligations and the subject of public concerns. Yet some bird species are more sensitive to bird-wind turbine mortality than others. This study developed a simple and logical framework for ranking bird species with regard to their relative sensitivity to bird-wind turbine-collisions, and applied it to a data set comprising 38 avian migrant species at the Nysted offshore wind farm in Denmark. Two indicators were selected to characterize the sensitivity of each individual species: 1) relative abundance and 2) demographic sensitivity (elasticity of population growth rate to changes in adult survival). In the case-study from the Nysted offshore wind farm, birds of prey and waterbirds dominated the group of high priority species and only passerines showed a low risk of being impacted by the wind farm. Even where passerines might be present in very high numbers, they often represent insignificant segments of huge reference populations that, from a demographic point of view, are relatively insensitive to wind farm-related adult mortality. It will always be important to focus attention and direct the resources towards the most sensitive species to ensure cost-effective environmental assessments in the future, and in general, this novel index seems capable of identifying the species that are at high risk of being adversely affected by wind farms.

  11. Effects of exurban development and temperature on bird species in the southern Appalachians.

    PubMed

    Lumpkin, Heather A; Pearson, Scott M

    2013-10-01

    Land-use dynamics and climatic gradients have large effects on many terrestrial systems. Exurban development, one of the fastest growing forms of land use in the United States, may affect wildlife through habitat fragmentation and building presence may alter habitat quality. We studied the effects of residential development and temperature gradients on bird species occurrence at 140 study sites in the southern Appalachian Mountains (North Carolina, U.S.A.) that varied with respect to building density and elevation. We used occupancy models to determine 36 bird species' associations with building density, forest canopy cover, average daily mean temperature, and an interaction between building density and mean temperature. Responses varied with habitat requirement, breeding range, and migration distance. Building density and mean temperature were both included in the top occupancy models for 19 of 36 species and a building density by temperature interaction was included in models for 8 bird species. As exurban development expands in the southern Appalachians, interior forest species and Neotropical migrants are likely to decline, but shrubland or edge species are not likely to benefit. Overall, effects of building density were greater than those of forest canopy cover. Exurban development had a greater effect on birds at high elevations due to a greater abundance of sensitive forest-interior species and Neotropical migrants. A warming climate may exacerbate these negative effects. PMID:23773053

  12. Effects of exurban development and temperature on bird species in the southern Appalachians.

    PubMed

    Lumpkin, Heather A; Pearson, Scott M

    2013-10-01

    Land-use dynamics and climatic gradients have large effects on many terrestrial systems. Exurban development, one of the fastest growing forms of land use in the United States, may affect wildlife through habitat fragmentation and building presence may alter habitat quality. We studied the effects of residential development and temperature gradients on bird species occurrence at 140 study sites in the southern Appalachian Mountains (North Carolina, U.S.A.) that varied with respect to building density and elevation. We used occupancy models to determine 36 bird species' associations with building density, forest canopy cover, average daily mean temperature, and an interaction between building density and mean temperature. Responses varied with habitat requirement, breeding range, and migration distance. Building density and mean temperature were both included in the top occupancy models for 19 of 36 species and a building density by temperature interaction was included in models for 8 bird species. As exurban development expands in the southern Appalachians, interior forest species and Neotropical migrants are likely to decline, but shrubland or edge species are not likely to benefit. Overall, effects of building density were greater than those of forest canopy cover. Exurban development had a greater effect on birds at high elevations due to a greater abundance of sensitive forest-interior species and Neotropical migrants. A warming climate may exacerbate these negative effects.

  13. Public support for conserving bird species runs counter to climate change impacts on their distributions.

    PubMed

    Lundhede, Thomas Hedemark; Jacobsen, Jette Bredahl; Hanley, Nick; Fjeldså, Jon; Rahbek, Carsten; Strange, Niels; Thorsen, Bo Jellesmark

    2014-01-01

    There is increasing evidence that global climate change will alter the spatiotemporal occurrences and abundances of many species at continental scales. This will have implications for efficient conservation of biodiversity. We investigate if the general public in Denmark are willing to pay for the preservation of birds potentially immigrating and establishing breeding populations due to climate change to the same extent that they are for native species populations currently breeding in Denmark, but potentially emigrating due to climate change. We find that Danish citizens are willing to pay much more for the conservation of birds currently native to Denmark, than for bird species moving into the country--even when they are informed about the potential range shifts associated with climate change. The only exception is when immigrating species populations are under pressure at European level. Furthermore, people believing climate change to be man-made and people more knowledgeable about birds tended to have higher WTP for conservation of native species, relative to other people, whereas their preferences for conserving immigrant species generally resembled those of other people. Conservation investments rely heavily on public funding and hence on public support. Our results suggest that cross-country coordination of conservation efforts under climate change will be challenging in terms of achieving an appropriate balance between cost-effectiveness in adaptation and the concerns of a general public who seem mostly worried about protecting currently-native species.

  14. Traffic noise affects forest bird species in a protected tropical forest.

    PubMed

    Arévalo, J Edgardo; Newhard, Kimberly

    2011-06-01

    The construction of roads near protected forest areas alters ecosystem function by creating habitat fragmentation and through several direct and indirect negative effects such as increased pollution, animal mortality through collisions, disturbance caused by excessive noise and wind turbulence. Noise in particular may have strong negative effects on animal groups such as frogs and birds, that rely on sound for communication as it can negatively interfere with vocalizations used for territorial defense or courtship. Thus, birds are expected to be less abundant close to the road where noise levels are high. In this study, we examined the effects of road traffic noise levels on forest bird species in a protected tropical forest in Costa Rica. Data collection was conducted in a forest segment of the Carara National Park adjacent to the Coastal Highway. We carried out 120 ten minute bird surveys and measured road noise levels 192 times from the 19th to the 23rd of April and from the 21st to the 28th of November, 2008. To maximize bird detection for the species richness estimates we operated six 12 m standard mist nets simultaneously with the surveys. The overall mist-netting effort was 240 net/h. In addition, we estimated traffic volumes by tallying the number of vehicles passing by the edge of the park using 24 one hour counts throughout the study. We found that the relative abundance of birds and bird species richness decreased significantly with the increasing traffic noise in the dry and wet season. Noise decreased significantly and in a logarithmic way with distance from the road in both seasons. However, noise levels at any given distance were significantly higher in the dry compared to the wet season. Our results suggest that noise might be an important factor influencing road bird avoidance as measured by species richness and relative abundance. Since the protected forest in question is located in a national park subjected to tourist visitation, these results

  15. Estimates of population change in selected species of tropical birds using mark-recapture data

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brawn, J.; Nichols, J.D.; Hines, J.E.; Nesbitt, J.

    2000-01-01

    The population biology of tropical birds is known for a only small sample of species; especially in the Neotropics. Robust estimates of parameters such as survival rate and finite rate of population change (A) are crucial for conservation purposes and useful for studies of avian life histories. We used methods developed by Pradel (1996, Biometrics 52:703-709) to estimate A for 10 species of tropical forest lowland birds using data from a long-term (> 20 yr) banding study in Panama. These species constitute a ecologically and phylogenetically diverse sample. We present these estimates and explore if they are consistent with what we know from selected studies of banded birds and from 5 yr of estimating nesting success (i.e., an important component of A). A major goal of these analyses is to assess if the mark-recapture methods generate reliable and reasonably precise estimates of population change than traditional methods that require more sampling effort.

  16. Variation in helper effort among cooperatively breeding bird species is consistent with Hamilton's Rule

    PubMed Central

    Green, Jonathan P.; Freckleton, Robert P.; Hatchwell, Ben J.

    2016-01-01

    Investment by helpers in cooperative breeding systems is extremely variable among species, but this variation is currently unexplained. Inclusive fitness theory predicts that, all else being equal, cooperative investment should correlate positively with the relatedness of helpers to the recipients of their care. We test this prediction in a comparative analysis of helper investment in 36 cooperatively breeding bird species. We show that species-specific helper contributions to cooperative brood care increase as the mean relatedness between helpers and recipients increases. Helper contributions are also related to the sex ratio of helpers, but neither group size nor the proportion of nests with helpers influence helper effort. Our findings support the hypothesis that variation in helping behaviour among cooperatively breeding birds is consistent with Hamilton's rule, indicating a key role for kin selection in the evolution of cooperative investment in social birds. PMID:27554604

  17. Variation in helper effort among cooperatively breeding bird species is consistent with Hamilton's Rule.

    PubMed

    Green, Jonathan P; Freckleton, Robert P; Hatchwell, Ben J

    2016-01-01

    Investment by helpers in cooperative breeding systems is extremely variable among species, but this variation is currently unexplained. Inclusive fitness theory predicts that, all else being equal, cooperative investment should correlate positively with the relatedness of helpers to the recipients of their care. We test this prediction in a comparative analysis of helper investment in 36 cooperatively breeding bird species. We show that species-specific helper contributions to cooperative brood care increase as the mean relatedness between helpers and recipients increases. Helper contributions are also related to the sex ratio of helpers, but neither group size nor the proportion of nests with helpers influence helper effort. Our findings support the hypothesis that variation in helping behaviour among cooperatively breeding birds is consistent with Hamilton's rule, indicating a key role for kin selection in the evolution of cooperative investment in social birds. PMID:27554604

  18. Monitoring potential geographical distribution of four wild bird species in China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dai, S.; Feng, D.; Xu, B.

    2015-12-01

    The outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) of the H5N1 subtype in wild birds and poultry have caught worldwide attention. To explore the association between wild bird migration and avian influenza virus transmission, we monitored potential geographical distribution of four wild bird species that might carry the avian influenza viruses in China. They are Bar-headed geese (Anser indicus), Ruddy Shelduck (Tadorna ferruginea), Whooper Swan (Cygnus cygnus) and Black-headed Gull (Larus ridibundus). They served as major reservoir of the avian influenza viruses. We used bird watching records with the precise latitude/longitude coordinates from January 2002 to August 2014, and environmental variables with a pixel resolution of 5 km × 5 km from 2002 to 2014. The study utilized maximum entropy (MaxEnt) model based on ecological niche model approaches, and got the following results: 1) MaxEnt model have good discriminatory ability with the area under the curve (AUC) of the receiver operating curve (ROC) of 0.86-0.97; 2) The four wild bird species were estimated to concentrate in the North China Plain, the middle and lower region of the Yangtze River, Qinghai Lake, Tianshan Mountain and Tarim Basin, part of Tibet Plateau, and Hengduan Mountains; 3) Radiation and the minimum temperature were found to provide the most significant information. Our findings will help to understand the spread of avian influenza viruses by wild bird migration in China, which benefits for effective monitoring strategies and prevention measures.

  19. Spatial, temporal, and species variation in prevalence of influenza A viruses in wild migratory birds.

    PubMed

    Munster, Vincent J; Baas, Chantal; Lexmond, Pascal; Waldenström, Jonas; Wallensten, Anders; Fransson, Thord; Rimmelzwaan, Guus F; Beyer, Walter E P; Schutten, Martin; Olsen, Björn; Osterhaus, Albert D M E; Fouchier, Ron A M

    2007-05-11

    Although extensive data exist on avian influenza in wild birds in North America, limited information is available from elsewhere, including Europe. Here, molecular diagnostic tools were employed for high-throughput surveillance of migratory birds, as an alternative to classical labor-intensive methods of virus isolation in eggs. This study included 36,809 samples from 323 bird species belonging to 18 orders, of which only 25 species of three orders were positive for influenza A virus. Information on species, locations, and timing is provided for all samples tested. Seven previously unknown host species for avian influenza virus were identified: barnacle goose, bean goose, brent goose, pink-footed goose, bewick's swan, common gull, and guillemot. Dabbling ducks were more frequently infected than other ducks and Anseriformes; this distinction was probably related to bird behavior rather than population sizes. Waders did not appear to play a role in the epidemiology of avian influenza in Europe, in contrast to the Americas. The high virus prevalence in ducks in Europe in spring as compared with North America could explain the differences in virus-host ecology between these continents. Most influenza A virus subtypes were detected in ducks, but H13 and H16 subtypes were detected primarily in gulls. Viruses of subtype H6 were more promiscuous in host range than other subtypes. Temporal and spatial variation in influenza virus prevalence in wild birds was observed, with influenza A virus prevalence varying by sampling location; this is probably related to migration patterns from northeast to southwest and a higher prevalence farther north along the flyways. We discuss the ecology and epidemiology of avian influenza A virus in wild birds in relation to host ecology and compare our results with published studies. These data are useful for designing new surveillance programs and are particularly relevant due to increased interest in avian influenza in wild birds. PMID

  20. Ethical advantages of using domestic bird species for magnetic orientation research.

    PubMed

    Freire, Rafael

    2011-01-01

    Identifying the mechanism in birds that controls magnetic orientation behavior is proving elusive and is currently attracting a plethora of research activity. Much of this research involves wild birds that are caught in nets, tested and released. Ethical concerns regarding these experiments are likely to encompass the welfare of animals, their "rights" and conservation issues. Recently, Pekin ducks derived from migratory ancestors have been shown to posses a magnetic compass in a simple conditioning procedure. The use of domestic bird species provides a refinement in the ethics of animal experimentation since these birds are not caught in nets, are less fearful of humans and their use does not raise conservation concerns. The study of magnetic orientation is a high profile and fascinating areas of animal behavior research and one in which behavioral scientists should be seen to actively embrace the principles of the 3R's.

  1. Single mitochondrial gene barcodes reliably identify sister-species in diverse clades of birds

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    Background DNA barcoding of life using a standardized COI sequence was proposed as a species identification system, and as a method for detecting putative new species. Previous tests in birds showed that individuals can be correctly assigned to species in ~94% of the cases and suggested a threshold of 10× mean intraspecific difference to detect potential new species. However, these tests were criticized because they were based on a single maternally inherited gene rather than multiple nuclear genes, did not compare phylogenetically identified sister species, and thus likely overestimated the efficacy of DNA barcodes in identifying species. Results To test the efficacy of DNA barcodes we compared ~650 bp of COI in 60 sister-species pairs identified in multigene phylogenies from 10 orders of birds. In all pairs, individuals of each species were monophyletic in a neighbor-joining (NJ) tree, and each species possessed fixed mutational differences distinguishing them from their sister species. Consequently, individuals were correctly assigned to species using a statistical coalescent framework. A coalescent test of taxonomic distinctiveness based on chance occurrence of reciprocal monophyly in two lineages was verified in known sister species, and used to identify recently separated lineages that represent putative species. This approach avoids the use of a universal distance cutoff which is invalidated by variation in times to common ancestry of sister species and in rates of evolution. Conclusion Closely related sister species of birds can be identified reliably by barcodes of fixed diagnostic substitutions in COI sequences, verifying coalescent-based statistical tests of reciprocal monophyly for taxonomic distinctiveness. Contrary to recent criticisms, a single DNA barcode is a rapid way to discover monophyletic lineages within a metapopulation that might represent undiscovered cryptic species, as envisaged in the unified species concept. This identifies a smaller

  2. Antibody response of five bird species after vaccination with a killed West Nile virus vaccine.

    PubMed

    Okeson, Danelle M; Llizo, Shirley Yeo; Miller, Christine L; Glaser, Amy L

    2007-06-01

    West Nile virus has been associated with numerous bird mortalities in the United States since 1999. Five avian species at three zoological parks were selected to assess the antibody response to vaccination for West Nile virus: black-footed penguins (Spheniscus demersus), little blue penguins (Eudyptula minor), American flamingos (Phoenicopterus ruber), Chilean flamingos (Phoenicopterus chilensis), and Attwater's prairie chickens (Tympanuchus cupido attwateri). All birds were vaccinated intramuscularly at least twice with a commercially available inactivated whole virus vaccine (Innovator). Significant differences in antibody titer over time were detected for black-footed penguins and both flamingo species.

  3. Learning about Bird Species on the Primary Level

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Randler, Christoph

    2009-01-01

    Animal species identification is often emphasized as a basic prerequisite for an understanding of ecology because ecological interactions are based on interactions between species at least as it is taught on the school level. Therefore, training identification skills or using identification books seems a worthwhile task in biology education, and…

  4. Are mixed-species bird flocks stable through two decades?

    PubMed

    Martínez, Ari E; Gomez, Juan P

    2013-03-01

    The stability of tropical systems has been hypothesized to explain the evolution of complex behavioral interactions among species. We evaluate the degree to which one highly evolved social system, mixed-species flocks, are stable in space and time in French Guiana, where flocks were characterized 17 years apart. These flocks are led by alarm-calling "sentinels," which may benefit from food flushed by other "beater" species. Using null models, we found that flock roost sites, home range overlap, and composition were more similar than expected by chance; home ranges were nearly identical between the two time periods. Such extremely stable conditions may be essential for the evolution and maintenance of the sentinel-beater system that appears to characterize some flocks. These results may reflect an evolutionarily stable strategy among potentially interdependent species within mixed-species flocks, where home ranges contribute to stability by being far larger than the most common local disturbances in the forest. PMID:23448892

  5. Contrasted patterns of genetic differentiation across eight bird species in the Lesser Antilles.

    PubMed

    Khimoun, Aurélie; Arnoux, Emilie; Martel, Guillaume; Pot, Alexandre; Eraud, Cyril; Condé, Béatriz; Loubon, Maxime; Théron, Franck; Covas, Rita; Faivre, Bruno; Garnier, Stéphane

    2016-02-01

    Archipelagoes are considered as "natural laboratories" for studying processes that shape the distribution of diversity. The Lesser Antilles provide a favorable geographical context for divergence to occur. However, although morphological subspecies have been described across this archipelago in numerous avian species, the potential for the Lesser Antilles in driving intra-specific genetic divergence in highly mobile organisms such as birds remains understudied. Here, we assessed level of intra-specific genetic diversity and differentiation between three islands of the Lesser Antilles (Guadeloupe, Dominica and Martinique) using a multi-species approach on eight bird species. For each species, we built a set of microsatellite markers from cross-species amplifications. Significant patterns of inter-island and/or within-island genetic differentiation were detected in all species. However, levels of intra-specific genetic differentiation among the eight bird species were not always consistent with the boundaries of subspecies previously described in the sampled islands. These results suggest different histories of colonization/expansion and/or different species-specific ecological traits affecting gene flow, advocating for multi-species studies of historical and contemporary factors shaping the distribution of diversity on islands. PMID:26797853

  6. Contrasted patterns of genetic differentiation across eight bird species in the Lesser Antilles.

    PubMed

    Khimoun, Aurélie; Arnoux, Emilie; Martel, Guillaume; Pot, Alexandre; Eraud, Cyril; Condé, Béatriz; Loubon, Maxime; Théron, Franck; Covas, Rita; Faivre, Bruno; Garnier, Stéphane

    2016-02-01

    Archipelagoes are considered as "natural laboratories" for studying processes that shape the distribution of diversity. The Lesser Antilles provide a favorable geographical context for divergence to occur. However, although morphological subspecies have been described across this archipelago in numerous avian species, the potential for the Lesser Antilles in driving intra-specific genetic divergence in highly mobile organisms such as birds remains understudied. Here, we assessed level of intra-specific genetic diversity and differentiation between three islands of the Lesser Antilles (Guadeloupe, Dominica and Martinique) using a multi-species approach on eight bird species. For each species, we built a set of microsatellite markers from cross-species amplifications. Significant patterns of inter-island and/or within-island genetic differentiation were detected in all species. However, levels of intra-specific genetic differentiation among the eight bird species were not always consistent with the boundaries of subspecies previously described in the sampled islands. These results suggest different histories of colonization/expansion and/or different species-specific ecological traits affecting gene flow, advocating for multi-species studies of historical and contemporary factors shaping the distribution of diversity on islands.

  7. Microhabitat selection by three common bird species of montane farmlands in Northern Greece.

    PubMed

    Tsiakiris, Rigas; Stara, Kalliopi; Pantis, John; Sgardelis, Stefanos

    2009-11-01

    Common farmland birds are declining throughout Europe; however, marginal farmlands that escaped intensification or land abandonment remain a haven for farmland species in some Mediterranean mountains. The purpose of this study is to identify the most important anthropogenic microhabitat characteristics for Red-Backed Shrike (Lanius collurio), Corn Bunting (Miliaria calandra) and Common Whitethroat (Sylvia communis) in three such areas within the newly established Northern Pindos National Park. We compare land use structural and physiognomic characteristics of the habitat within 133 plots containing birds paired with randomly selected "non-bird" plots. Using logistic regression and classification-tree models we identify the specific habitat requirements for each of the three birds. The three species show a preference for agricultural mosaics dominated by rangelands with scattered shrub or short trees mixed with arable land. Areas with dikes and dirt roads are preferred by all three species, while the presence of fences and periodically burned bushes and hedges are of particular importance for Red-Backed Shrike. Across the gradient of vegetation density and height, M. calandra is mostly found in grasslands with few dwarf shrubs and short trees, S. communis in places with more dense and tall vegetation of shrub, trees and hedges, and L. collurio, being a typical bird of ecotones, occurs in both habitats and in intermediate situations. In all cases those requirements are associated with habitat features maintained either directly or indirectly by the traditional agricultural activities in the area and particularly by the long established extensive controlled grazing that prevent shrub expansion.

  8. Bird species migration ratio in East Asia, Australia, and surrounding islands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuo, Yiliang; Lin, Da-Li; Chuang, Fu-Man; Lee, Pei-Fen; Ding, Tzung-Su

    2013-08-01

    Bird migration and its relationship with the contemporary environment have attracted long-term discussion. We calculated the avian migration ratio (the proportion of breeding species that migrate) in the areas from 70°E to 180°E and examined its relationship with the annual ranges of ambient temperature, primary productivity (estimated by the Enhanced Vegetation Index), and precipitation, along with island isolation and elevational range. The avian migration ratio increased with increasing latitude in general but varied greatly between the two hemispheres. Additionally, it showed minimal differences between continents and islands. Our analyses revealed that the seasonality of ambient temperature, which represents the energy expenditure of birds, is the dominant factor in determining bird species migration. Seasonality in primary productivity and other environmental factors play an indirect or limited role in bird species migration. The lower avian migration ratio in the Southern Hemisphere can be attributed to its paleogeographical isolation, stable paleoclimate, and warm contemporary environment. Under current trends of global warming, our findings should lead to further studies of the impact of warming on bird migration.

  9. Can Birds Perceive Rhythmic Patterns? A Review and Experiments on a Songbird and a Parrot Species.

    PubMed

    Ten Cate, Carel; Spierings, Michelle; Hubert, Jeroen; Honing, Henkjan

    2016-01-01

    While humans can easily entrain their behavior with the beat in music, this ability is rare among animals. Yet, comparative studies in non-human species are needed if we want to understand how and why this ability evolved. Entrainment requires two abilities: (1) recognizing the regularity in the auditory stimulus and (2) the ability to adjust the own motor output to the perceived pattern. It has been suggested that beat perception and entrainment are linked to the ability for vocal learning. The presence of some bird species showing beat induction, and also the existence of vocal learning as well as vocal non-learning bird taxa, make them relevant models for comparative research on rhythm perception and its link to vocal learning. Also, some bird vocalizations show strong regularity in rhythmic structure, suggesting that birds might perceive rhythmic structures. In this paper we review the available experimental evidence for the perception of regularity and rhythms by birds, like the ability to distinguish regular from irregular stimuli over tempo transformations and report data from new experiments. While some species show a limited ability to detect regularity, most evidence suggests that birds attend primarily to absolute and not relative timing of patterns and to local features of stimuli. We conclude that, apart from some large parrot species, there is limited evidence for beat and regularity perception among birds and that the link to vocal learning is unclear. We next report the new experiments in which zebra finches and budgerigars (both vocal learners) were first trained to distinguish a regular from an irregular pattern of beats and then tested on various tempo transformations of these stimuli. The results showed that both species reduced the discrimination after tempo transformations. This suggests that, as was found in earlier studies, they attended mainly to local temporal features of the stimuli, and not to their overall regularity. However, some

  10. Can Birds Perceive Rhythmic Patterns? A Review and Experiments on a Songbird and a Parrot Species.

    PubMed

    Ten Cate, Carel; Spierings, Michelle; Hubert, Jeroen; Honing, Henkjan

    2016-01-01

    While humans can easily entrain their behavior with the beat in music, this ability is rare among animals. Yet, comparative studies in non-human species are needed if we want to understand how and why this ability evolved. Entrainment requires two abilities: (1) recognizing the regularity in the auditory stimulus and (2) the ability to adjust the own motor output to the perceived pattern. It has been suggested that beat perception and entrainment are linked to the ability for vocal learning. The presence of some bird species showing beat induction, and also the existence of vocal learning as well as vocal non-learning bird taxa, make them relevant models for comparative research on rhythm perception and its link to vocal learning. Also, some bird vocalizations show strong regularity in rhythmic structure, suggesting that birds might perceive rhythmic structures. In this paper we review the available experimental evidence for the perception of regularity and rhythms by birds, like the ability to distinguish regular from irregular stimuli over tempo transformations and report data from new experiments. While some species show a limited ability to detect regularity, most evidence suggests that birds attend primarily to absolute and not relative timing of patterns and to local features of stimuli. We conclude that, apart from some large parrot species, there is limited evidence for beat and regularity perception among birds and that the link to vocal learning is unclear. We next report the new experiments in which zebra finches and budgerigars (both vocal learners) were first trained to distinguish a regular from an irregular pattern of beats and then tested on various tempo transformations of these stimuli. The results showed that both species reduced the discrimination after tempo transformations. This suggests that, as was found in earlier studies, they attended mainly to local temporal features of the stimuli, and not to their overall regularity. However, some

  11. Can Birds Perceive Rhythmic Patterns? A Review and Experiments on a Songbird and a Parrot Species

    PubMed Central

    ten Cate, Carel; Spierings, Michelle; Hubert, Jeroen; Honing, Henkjan

    2016-01-01

    While humans can easily entrain their behavior with the beat in music, this ability is rare among animals. Yet, comparative studies in non-human species are needed if we want to understand how and why this ability evolved. Entrainment requires two abilities: (1) recognizing the regularity in the auditory stimulus and (2) the ability to adjust the own motor output to the perceived pattern. It has been suggested that beat perception and entrainment are linked to the ability for vocal learning. The presence of some bird species showing beat induction, and also the existence of vocal learning as well as vocal non-learning bird taxa, make them relevant models for comparative research on rhythm perception and its link to vocal learning. Also, some bird vocalizations show strong regularity in rhythmic structure, suggesting that birds might perceive rhythmic structures. In this paper we review the available experimental evidence for the perception of regularity and rhythms by birds, like the ability to distinguish regular from irregular stimuli over tempo transformations and report data from new experiments. While some species show a limited ability to detect regularity, most evidence suggests that birds attend primarily to absolute and not relative timing of patterns and to local features of stimuli. We conclude that, apart from some large parrot species, there is limited evidence for beat and regularity perception among birds and that the link to vocal learning is unclear. We next report the new experiments in which zebra finches and budgerigars (both vocal learners) were first trained to distinguish a regular from an irregular pattern of beats and then tested on various tempo transformations of these stimuli. The results showed that both species reduced the discrimination after tempo transformations. This suggests that, as was found in earlier studies, they attended mainly to local temporal features of the stimuli, and not to their overall regularity. However, some

  12. Geographical variation in bill size across bird species provides evidence for Allen's rule.

    PubMed

    Symonds, Matthew R E; Tattersall, Glenn J

    2010-08-01

    Allen's rule proposes that the appendages of endotherms are smaller, relative to body size, in colder climates, in order to reduce heat loss. Empirical support for Allen's rule is mainly derived from occasional reports of geographical clines in extremity size of individual species. Interspecific evidence is restricted to two studies of leg proportions in seabirds and shorebirds. We used phylogenetic comparative analyses of 214 bird species to examine whether bird bills, significant sites of heat exchange, conform to Allen's rule. The species comprised eight diverse taxonomic groups-toucans, African barbets, Australian parrots, estrildid finches, Canadian galliforms, penguins, gulls, and terns. Across all species, there were strongly significant relationships between bill length and both latitude and environmental temperature, with species in colder climates having significantly shorter bills. Patterns supporting Allen's rule in relation to latitudinal or altitudinal distribution held within all groups except the finches. Evidence for a direct association with temperature was found within four groups (parrots, galliforms, penguins, and gulls). Support for Allen's rule in leg elements was weaker, suggesting that bird bills may be more susceptible to thermoregulatory constraints generally. Our results provide the strongest comparative support yet published for Allen's rule and demonstrate that thermoregulation has been an important factor in shaping the evolution of bird bills. PMID:20545560

  13. Geographical variation in bill size across bird species provides evidence for Allen's rule.

    PubMed

    Symonds, Matthew R E; Tattersall, Glenn J

    2010-08-01

    Allen's rule proposes that the appendages of endotherms are smaller, relative to body size, in colder climates, in order to reduce heat loss. Empirical support for Allen's rule is mainly derived from occasional reports of geographical clines in extremity size of individual species. Interspecific evidence is restricted to two studies of leg proportions in seabirds and shorebirds. We used phylogenetic comparative analyses of 214 bird species to examine whether bird bills, significant sites of heat exchange, conform to Allen's rule. The species comprised eight diverse taxonomic groups-toucans, African barbets, Australian parrots, estrildid finches, Canadian galliforms, penguins, gulls, and terns. Across all species, there were strongly significant relationships between bill length and both latitude and environmental temperature, with species in colder climates having significantly shorter bills. Patterns supporting Allen's rule in relation to latitudinal or altitudinal distribution held within all groups except the finches. Evidence for a direct association with temperature was found within four groups (parrots, galliforms, penguins, and gulls). Support for Allen's rule in leg elements was weaker, suggesting that bird bills may be more susceptible to thermoregulatory constraints generally. Our results provide the strongest comparative support yet published for Allen's rule and demonstrate that thermoregulation has been an important factor in shaping the evolution of bird bills.

  14. Establishing appropriate measures for monitoring aging in birds: comparing short and long lived species

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ottinger, M.A.; Reed, E.; Wu, J.; Thompson, N.; French, J.B.

    2003-01-01

    In order to reveal patterns of reproductive aging in birds we focus on a short lived species, the Japanese quail and the American kestrel, which has a life span of medium length. Quail have been studied extensively in the laboratory as models for understanding avian endocrinology and behavior, and as a subject for toxicological research and testing. In the lab, Japanese quail show age-related deterioration in endocrine, behavioral, and sensory system responses; the American kestrel is relatively long lived and shows moderate evidence of senescence in the oldest birds. Using data collected from captive kestrels at the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, a database was designed to document selected parameters over the life cycle of the kestrels. Life table data collated from many species indicate that longer lived species of birds show senescence in survival ability but this pattern has not been established for reproductive function. We suggest that useful comparisons among species can be made by identifying stages in reproductive life history, organized on a relative time scale. Preliminary data from quail and kestrels, admittedly only two species, do not yet indicate a pattern of greater reproductive senescence in longer-lived birds.

  15. Leucocytozoon (Apicomplexa: Leucocytozoidae) from West African birds, with descriptions of two species.

    PubMed

    Jones, Hugh I; Sehgal, Ravinder N M; Smith, Thomas B

    2005-04-01

    Five species of Leucocytozoon were recovered from 35/828 birds of 95 species examined from 6 sites in West Africa between May 1995 and June 2001. Leucocytozoon pogoniuli n. sp. is described from the tinker barbets Pogoniulus subsulphureus and Pogoniulus atroflavus. Leucocytozoon trachyphoni n. sp. is described from the barbet Trachyphonus purpureus. No leucocytozoids have been reported previously in species of Pogoniulus. Leucocytozoon nectariniae was identified from the sunbird Nectarinia olivacea, and Leucocytozoon brimonti was recovered from 4 species of Pycnonotidae (bulbuls), all of which are new host records. We also report the first Leucocytozoon to be recovered from the phylogenetically isolated bird, Picathartes sp. (Picathartidae). This parasite is similar in appearance to Leucocytozoon sakharoffi, and probably represents a previously undescribed species. In view of the intraspecific variability and, frequently, relatively minor interspecific differences within Leucocytozoidae, we suggest that the development and application of molecular techniques would greatly advance understanding of speciation and relationships within this family.

  16. Birds of a feather: using species assemblages to assess vulnerability to extinction.

    PubMed

    Paini, Dean R; Mokany, Karel

    2016-03-01

    Estimating extinction vulnerability for a large number of species presents significant challenges for researchers, but is of high importance considering the large number of species that are currently unassessed. We present a method using a type of artificial neural network (self organizing map; SOM), which utilizes the co-occurrence patterns of species to estimate each species' vulnerability to extinction. We use this method on Australian bird assemblages and compare the SOM-generated rankings for vulnerability with assessments from the IUCN Red List for those species in which populations have actually been estimated. For species that have had their populations estimated, the SOM performed well in distinguishing those species ranked of least concern by IUCN from those species in one of the other IUCN categories. Further, 19 species that were identified as highly vulnerable by the SOM analysis have never had their populations estimated and have been ranked by the IUCN of least concern. We show how the SOM can identify spatial variation in vulnerability for a species, and identify those regions in Australia in which the resident species have the greatest levels of vulnerability (central Australia). We conclude that the SOM provides a useful tool for researchers and agencies dealing with conservation strategies focused on large numbers of species and we urge a more detailed assessment of the 19 bird species identified by this analysis as vulnerable to extinction. PMID:27209784

  17. Intensity discrimination as a function of level and frequency in three species of birds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lauer, Amanda M.; Poling, Kirsten; Dooling, Robert J.

    2003-04-01

    Many studies have examined frequency discrimination in birds, but there has not been as complete a description of avian intensity discrimination abilities. Birds appear to be slightly less sensitive to changes in intensity than humans and other mammals; however, few studies have systematically looked at the effects of both frequency and presentation level on intensity discrimination in birds. Here we describe intensity discrimination as a function of frequency and sensation level in two small songbird species, the canary (Serinus canarius), the zebra finch (Taeniopygia guttata), and a nonsongbird species, the budgerigar (Melopsittacus undulatus). Intensity difference limens (DLIs) for pure tones were obtained from birds using standard operant conditioning procedures and the Method of Constant Stimuli. DLIs ranged from approximately 2-6 dB, which are slightly larger than the DLIs reported in mammals. For all three species, DLIs become smaller with increasing presentation level, but show little effect across frequency for a given level. These results are consistent with previous reports in other species. [Work supported by NIH DC01372 to RJD and DC05450 to AML.

  18. BIRD SPECIES ASSEMBLAGES AS INDICATORS OF BIOLOGICAL INTEGRITY IN GREAT BASIN RANGELAND

    EPA Science Inventory

    The study evaluates the potential for bird species assemblages to serve as indicators of biological integrity of rangelands in the Great Basin in much the same way that fish and invertebrate assemblages have been used as indicators in aquatic environments. Our approach was to ide...

  19. Student Science Teachers' Ideas about Endangered Bird Species: Hermit Ibis, Chukar Partridge

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cardak, Osman; Dikmenli, Musa

    2009-01-01

    In this study, student science teachers' ideas and views of endangered bird species and their protection are analysed. 173 student science teachers studying at Selcuk University in the department of science education, participated in the study. Data analysis provides evidence that the majority of students thought that human intervention is…

  20. Detection and identification of Malassezia species in domestic animals and aquatic birds by PCR-RFLP

    PubMed Central

    Zia, M.; Mirhendi, H.; Toghyani, M.

    2015-01-01

    The present study aimed at detection and species-level identification of the Malassezia yeasts in domestic animals and aquatic birds by polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP). Samples were collected using tape strips and swabs from 471 animals including 97 horses, 102 cattle, 105 sheep, 20 camels, 60 dogs, 30 cats, 1 hamster, 1 squirrel, 50 aquatic birds and 5 turkeys. Tape-strip samples were examined by direct microscopy. All samples were inoculated on modified Leeming and Notman agar medium. DNA extracted from the yeast colonies was amplified by PCR using primers specific for 26S rDNA. RFLP of the PCR products was performed using Hin6I enzyme, and PCR and RFLP products were visualized by agarose gel electrophoresis. Malassezia yeasts were detected at the following frequencies: 15.46% in horses, 12.74% in cattle, 12.38% in sheep, 28.33% in dogs, 26.66% in cats and 26% in aquatic birds. Eighty colonies of 6 species were isolated: Malassezia globosa 41.25%, Malassezia furfur 22.5%, Malassezia restricta 15%, Malassezia sympodialis 15%, Malassezia pachydermatis 5% and Malassezia slooffiae 1.25%. Therefore different lipophilic Malassezia species are found in a wide diversity of animals and aquatic birds. PCR-RFLP is a suitable technique for identification of different Malassezia species. PMID:27175148

  1. Comparing Methods of Instruction Using Bird Species Identification Skills as Indicators.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Randler, Christoph; Bogner, Franz

    2002-01-01

    Compares two different methods of educational instruction, both addressing the improvement of pupils in bird species identification skills. Uses hands-on and group-based learning styles with (stuffed) taxidermy specimens and teacher-based slide presentations. Reports an increase in knowledge with both instructional methods but different learning…

  2. Opposing mechanisms drive richness patterns of core and transient bird species.

    PubMed

    Coyle, Jessica R; Hurlbert, Allen H; White, Ethan P

    2013-04-01

    Studies of biodiversity typically assume that all species are equivalent. However, some species in a community maintain viable populations in the study area, while others occur only occasionally as transient individuals. Here we show that North American bird communities can reliably be divided into core and transient species groups and that the richness of each group is driven by different processes. The richness of core species is influenced primarily by local environmental conditions, while the richness of transient species is influenced primarily by the heterogeneity of the surrounding landscape. This demonstrates that the well-known effects of the local environment and landscape heterogeneity on overall species richness are the result of two sets of processes operating differentially on core and transient species. Models of species richness should focus on explaining two distinct patterns, those of core and transient species, rather than a single pattern for the community as a whole.

  3. Bird population trends are linearly affected by climate change along species thermal ranges.

    PubMed

    Jiguet, Frédéric; Devictor, Vincent; Ottvall, Richard; Van Turnhout, Chris; Van der Jeugd, Henk; Lindström, Ake

    2010-12-01

    Beyond the effects of temperature increase on local population trends and on species distribution shifts, how populations of a given species are affected by climate change along a species range is still unclear. We tested whether and how species responses to climate change are related to the populations locations within the species thermal range. We compared the average 20 year growth rates of 62 terrestrial breeding birds in three European countries along the latitudinal gradient of the species ranges. After controlling for factors already reported to affect bird population trends (habitat specialization, migration distance and body mass), we found that populations breeding close to the species thermal maximum have lower growth rates than those in other parts of the thermal range, while those breeding close to the species thermal minimum have higher growth rates. These results were maintained even after having controlled for the effect of latitude per se. Therefore, the results cannot solely be explained by latitudinal clines linked to the geographical structure in local spring warming. Indeed, we found that populations are not just responding to changes in temperature at the hottest and coolest parts of the species range, but that they show a linear graded response across their European thermal range. We thus provide insights into how populations respond to climate changes. We suggest that projections of future species distributions, and also management options and conservation assessments, cannot be based on the assumption of a uniform response to climate change across a species range or at range edges only.

  4. Protected areas alleviate climate change effects on northern bird species of conservation concern

    PubMed Central

    Virkkala, Raimo; Pöyry, Juha; Heikkinen, Risto K; Lehikoinen, Aleksi; Valkama, Jari

    2014-01-01

    Global climate change is a major threat to biodiversity, posing increasing pressures on species to adapt in situ or shift their ranges. A protected area network is one of the main instruments to alleviate the negative impacts of climate change. Importantly, protected area networks might be expected to enhance the resilience of regional populations of species of conservation concern, resulting in slower species loss in landscapes with a significant amount of protected habitat compared to unprotected landscapes. Based on national bird atlases compiled in 1974–1989 and 2006–2010, this study examines the recent range shifts in 90 forest, mire, marshland, and Arctic mountain heath bird species of conservation concern in Finland, as well as the changes in their species richness in protected versus unprotected areas. The trends emerging from the atlas data comparisons were also related to the earlier study dealing with predictions of distributional changes for these species for the time slice of 2051–2080, developed using bioclimatic envelope models (BEMs). Our results suggest that the observed changes in bird distributions are in the same direction as the BEM-based predictions, resulting in a decrease in species richness of mire and Arctic mountain heath species and an increase in marshland species. The patterns of changes in species richness between the two time slices are in general parallel in protected and unprotected areas. However, importantly, protected areas maintained a higher level of species richness than unprotected areas. This finding provides support for the significance and resilience provision of protected area networks in preserving species of conservation concern under climate change. PMID:25247057

  5. Protected areas alleviate climate change effects on northern bird species of conservation concern.

    PubMed

    Virkkala, Raimo; Pöyry, Juha; Heikkinen, Risto K; Lehikoinen, Aleksi; Valkama, Jari

    2014-08-01

    Global climate change is a major threat to biodiversity, posing increasing pressures on species to adapt in situ or shift their ranges. A protected area network is one of the main instruments to alleviate the negative impacts of climate change. Importantly, protected area networks might be expected to enhance the resilience of regional populations of species of conservation concern, resulting in slower species loss in landscapes with a significant amount of protected habitat compared to unprotected landscapes. Based on national bird atlases compiled in 1974-1989 and 2006-2010, this study examines the recent range shifts in 90 forest, mire, marshland, and Arctic mountain heath bird species of conservation concern in Finland, as well as the changes in their species richness in protected versus unprotected areas. The trends emerging from the atlas data comparisons were also related to the earlier study dealing with predictions of distributional changes for these species for the time slice of 2051-2080, developed using bioclimatic envelope models (BEMs). Our results suggest that the observed changes in bird distributions are in the same direction as the BEM-based predictions, resulting in a decrease in species richness of mire and Arctic mountain heath species and an increase in marshland species. The patterns of changes in species richness between the two time slices are in general parallel in protected and unprotected areas. However, importantly, protected areas maintained a higher level of species richness than unprotected areas. This finding provides support for the significance and resilience provision of protected area networks in preserving species of conservation concern under climate change.

  6. This (Sandpiper like) bird, as well as many other species keep watch over Moffett Field wetlands.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1991-01-01

    This (Sandpiper like) bird, as well as many other species keep watch over Moffett Field wetlands. The shorebird in this picture is a greater yellowlegs (Tinga melanoleuca) which is a common bird found in our coastal salt marsh and tidal zones in winter months. Generally, they summer/breed up north in Canada and Alaska and then migrate in the fall to winter along the west coast of the U.S. and Mexico. Known for their loud call of a slightly descending series of three or more tew notes. Diet consists of small fish, insects, snails, worms, and tadpoles. used in Ames 60 yr. History NASA SP-2000-4314

  7. Malarial infections in sedentary and migratory passerine birds in Israel: description of new species.

    PubMed

    Paperna, I; Yosef, R; Chavatte, J M; Landau, I

    2010-12-01

    Our objective was to investigate the diversity of Plasmodium species in birds of the Rift Valley section in Israel. Plasmodium merulae Corradetti & Scanga, 1973 was previously reported in blackbirds (Turdus merula Linnaeus, 1758), that are resident. We also report and describe three other species and seven new species of Plasmodium from migratory birds in the north, and from Eilat at the southernmost tip of the Jordan Valley. New species are: Plasmodium lusciniae sp. n., Plasmodium alloreticulatus sp. n. and Plasmodium paranuclearis sp. n. from Luscinia svecica (Linnaeus, 1758), Plasmodium phoenicuri sp. n., Plasmodium reticulatus sp. n. and Plasmodium synnuclearis sp. n. from Phoenicurus phoenicurus (Linnaeus, 1758), and Plasmodium bilobatus sp. n. from Acrocephalus schoenobaenus (Linnaeus, 1758). The morphological affinities among the new described species and between P merulae and Plasmodium vaughani Novy & MacNeal, 1904 are highlighted and discussed. The host birds belong to two families: Muscicapidae (Turdus merula, Luscinia svecica and Phoenicurus phoenicurus) and Sylviidae (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus). All the parasites species are affiliated to the so-called "vaughani complex" (Corradetti & Scanga 1973) which are small parasites that possess a characteristic refractile globule in their cytoplasm. PMID:22320017

  8. Levels of organochlorine pesticide residues in blood plasma of various species of birds from India.

    PubMed

    Dhananjayan, Venugopal; Muralidharan, Subramanian

    2010-08-01

    Concentrations of organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) were measured in blood plasma of 13 species of birds collected from Ahmedabad, India. Among the various OCPs determined, HCHs and its isomers had higher contribution to the total OCPs. Concentration of summation operatorHCHs varied from 11.4 ng/mL in White ibis Threskiornis melanocephalus to 286 ng/mL in Sarus Crane Grus antigone, while summation operatorDDT ranged between 19 ng/mL in Black Ibis Pseudibis papillosa and 147 ng/mL in Painted Stork Mycteria leucocephala. p,p'-DDE was accounted for more than 50% of total DDT in many of the samples analysed. However, a p,p'-DDT to p,p'-DDE ratio higher than one obtained for many species of birds indicates the recent use of DDT in this study region. The concentrations of cyclodiene insecticides, heptachlor epoxide, dieldrin and total endosulfan ranged from 15.8 to 296.2 ng/mL, below detectable level to 15 and 41.1-153.2 ng/mL, respectively. The pattern of total OCP load generally occurred in the following order: granivores < insectivores < omnivores < piscivores < carnivores. Although, the organochlorine residues detected in blood plasma of birds are not indicative of toxicity, the presence of residues in birds over the years (2005-2007) indicates continued exposure to organochlorine compounds. However, continuous monitoring is recommended to facilitate the early identification of risks to the survival of a species.

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-12-01

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

  10. Natural Cross Chlamydial Infection between Livestock and Free-Living Bird Species

    PubMed Central

    Lemus, Jesús A.; Fargallo, Juan A.; Vergara, Pablo; Parejo, Deseada; Banda, Eva

    2010-01-01

    The study of cross-species pathogen transmission is essential to understanding the epizootiology and epidemiology of infectious diseases. Avian chlamydiosis is a zoonotic disease whose effects have been mainly investigated in humans, poultry and pet birds. It has been suggested that wild bird species play an important role as reservoirs for this disease. During a comparative health status survey in common (Falco tinnunculus) and lesser (Falco naumanni) kestrel populations in Spain, acute gammapathies were detected. We investigated whether gammapathies were associated with Chlamydiaceae infections. We recorded the prevalence of different Chlamydiaceae species in nestlings of both kestrel species in three different study areas. Chlamydophila psittaci serovar I (or Chlamydophila abortus), an ovine pathogen causing late-term abortions, was isolated from all the nestlings of both kestrel species in one of the three studied areas, a location with extensive ovine livestock enzootic of this atypical bacteria and where gammapathies were recorded. Serovar and genetic cluster analysis of the kestrel isolates from this area showed serovars A and C and the genetic cluster 1 and were different than those isolated from the other two areas. The serovar I in this area was also isolated from sheep abortions, sheep faeces, sheep stable dust, nest dust of both kestrel species, carrion beetles (Silphidae) and Orthoptera. This fact was not observed in other areas. In addition, we found kestrels to be infected by Chlamydia suis and Chlamydia muridarum, the first time these have been detected in birds. Our study evidences a pathogen transmission from ruminants to birds, highlighting the importance of this potential and unexplored mechanism of infection in an ecological context. On the other hand, it is reported a pathogen transmission from livestock to wildlife, revealing new and scarcely investigated anthropogenic threats for wild and endangered species. PMID:20976071

  11. Consequences of organic farming and landscape heterogeneity for species richness and abundance of farmland birds.

    PubMed

    Smith, Henrik G; Dänhardt, Juliana; Lindström, Ake; Rundlöf, Maj

    2010-04-01

    It has been suggested that organic farming may benefit farmland biodiversity more in landscapes that have lost a significant part of its former landscape heterogeneity. We tested this hypothesis by comparing bird species richness and abundance during the breeding season in organic and conventional farms, matched to eliminate all differences not directly linked to the farming practice, situated in either homogeneous plains with only a little semi-natural habitat or in heterogeneous farmland landscapes with abundant field borders and semi-natural grasslands. The effect of farm management on species richness interacted with landscape structure, such that there was a positive relationship between organic farming and diversity only in homogeneous landscapes. This pattern was mainly dependent on the species richness of passerine birds, in particular those that were invertebrate feeders. Species richness of non-passerines was positively related to organic farming independent of the landscape context. Bird abundance was positively related to landscape heterogeneity but not to farm management. This was mainly because the abundance of passerines, particularly invertebrate feeders, was positively related to landscape heterogeneity. We suggest that invertebrate feeders particularly benefit from organic farming because of improved foraging conditions through increased invertebrate abundances in otherwise depauperate homogeneous landscapes. Although many seed-eaters also benefit from increased insect abundance, they may also utilize crop seed resources in homogeneous landscapes and conventional farms. The occurrence of an interactive effect of organic farming and landscape heterogeneity on bird diversity will have consequences for the optimal allocation of resources to restore the diversity of farmland birds.

  12. High exposure rates of anticoagulant rodenticides in predatory bird species in intensively managed landscapes in Denmark.

    PubMed

    Christensen, Thomas Kjær; Lassen, Pia; Elmeros, Morten

    2012-10-01

    The extensive use of anticoagulant rodenticides (ARs) for rodent control has led to widespread secondary exposure in nontarget predatory wildlife species. We investigated exposure rates and concentrations of five ARs in liver samples from five raptors and six owls from Denmark. A total of 430 birds were analysed. ARs were detected in 84-100 % of individual birds within each species. Multiple AR exposure was detected in 73 % of all birds. Average number of substances detected in individual birds was 2.2 with no differences between owls and raptors. Difenacoum, bromadiolone, and brodifacoum were the most prevalent substances and occurred in the highest concentrations. Second-generation ARs made up 96 % of the summed AR burden. Among the six core species (sample size >30), summed AR concentrations were lower in rough-legged buzzard (Buteo lagopus) and long-eared owl (Asio otus) than in barn owl (Tyto alba), buzzard (B. buteo), kestrel (Falco tinnunculus), and tawny owl (Strix aluco). There was a strong tendency for seasonal variations in the summed AR concentration with levels being lowest during autumn, which is probably related to an influx of less-exposed migrating birds from northern Scandinavia during autumn. High hepatic AR residue concentrations (>100 ng/g wet weight), which have been associated with symptoms of rodenticide poisoning and increased mortality, were recorded high frequencies (12.9-37.4 %) in five of the six core species. The results suggest that the present use of ARs in Denmark, at least locally, may have adverse effects on reproduction and, ultimately, population status in some raptors and owls. PMID:22588365

  13. Fatal columbid herpesvirus-1 infections in three species of Australian birds of prey.

    PubMed

    Phalen, D N; Holz, P; Rasmussen, L; Bayley, C

    2011-05-01

    We document columbid herpesvirus-1 (CoHV-1) infection in two barking owls (Ninox connivens), a powerful owl (Ninox strenua) and an Australian hobby (Falco longipennis). Antemortem signs of infection were non-specific and the birds either died soon after they were identified as ill or were found dead unexpectedly. Gross postmortem findings were also not specific. Microscopically, marked to massive splenic and hepatic necrosis with the presence of eosinophilic inclusion bodies in remaining splenocytes and hepatocytes was found in all birds. Herpesvirus virions were identified in liver sections from one of the boobook owls by electron microscopy. Using CoHV-1-specific primers and polymerase chain reaction, CoHV-1 DNA was amplified from tissue samples from all birds. A comparison of these sequences to previously reported sequences of CoHV-1 found them to be identical or to vary by a single base pair. These findings increase the number of known species of birds of prey that are susceptible to CoHV-1 infection and indicate that rock pigeons (Columbia livia) should not be included in the diet of captive Australian birds of prey. PMID:21495992

  14. Very Low Population Structure in a Highly Mobile and Wide-Ranging Endangered Bird Species.

    PubMed

    Kvistad, Lynna; Ingwersen, Dean; Pavlova, Alexandra; Bull, James K; Sunnucks, Paul

    2015-01-01

    The loss of biodiversity following fragmentation and degradation of habitat is a major issue in conservation biology. As competition for resources increases following habitat loss and fragmentation, severe population declines may occur even in common, highly mobile species; such demographic decline may cause changes within the population structure of the species. The regent honeyeater, Anthochaera phrygia, is a highly nomadic woodland bird once common in its native southeast Australia. It has experienced a sharp decline in abundance since the late 1970s, following clearing of large areas of its preferred habitat, box-ironbark woodland, within the last 200 years. A captive breeding program has been established as part of efforts to restore this species. This study used genetic data to examine the range-wide population structure of regent honeyeaters, including spatial structure, its change through time, sex differences in philopatry and mobility, and genetic differences between the captive and wild populations. There was low genetic differentiation between birds captured in different geographic areas. Despite the recent demographic decline, low spatial structure appears to have some temporal consistency. Both sexes appear to be highly mobile, and there does not seem to be significant genetic differentiation between the captive and wild populations. We conclude that management efforts for survival of this species, including habitat protection, restoration, and release of captive-bred birds into the wild, can treat the species as effectively a single genetic population.

  15. Very Low Population Structure in a Highly Mobile and Wide-Ranging Endangered Bird Species

    PubMed Central

    Kvistad, Lynna; Ingwersen, Dean; Pavlova, Alexandra; Bull, James K.; Sunnucks, Paul

    2015-01-01

    The loss of biodiversity following fragmentation and degradation of habitat is a major issue in conservation biology. As competition for resources increases following habitat loss and fragmentation, severe population declines may occur even in common, highly mobile species; such demographic decline may cause changes within the population structure of the species. The regent honeyeater, Anthochaera phrygia, is a highly nomadic woodland bird once common in its native southeast Australia. It has experienced a sharp decline in abundance since the late 1970s, following clearing of large areas of its preferred habitat, box-ironbark woodland, within the last 200 years. A captive breeding program has been established as part of efforts to restore this species. This study used genetic data to examine the range-wide population structure of regent honeyeaters, including spatial structure, its change through time, sex differences in philopatry and mobility, and genetic differences between the captive and wild populations. There was low genetic differentiation between birds captured in different geographic areas. Despite the recent demographic decline, low spatial structure appears to have some temporal consistency. Both sexes appear to be highly mobile, and there does not seem to be significant genetic differentiation between the captive and wild populations. We conclude that management efforts for survival of this species, including habitat protection, restoration, and release of captive-bred birds into the wild, can treat the species as effectively a single genetic population. PMID:26649426

  16. Very Low Population Structure in a Highly Mobile and Wide-Ranging Endangered Bird Species.

    PubMed

    Kvistad, Lynna; Ingwersen, Dean; Pavlova, Alexandra; Bull, James K; Sunnucks, Paul

    2015-01-01

    The loss of biodiversity following fragmentation and degradation of habitat is a major issue in conservation biology. As competition for resources increases following habitat loss and fragmentation, severe population declines may occur even in common, highly mobile species; such demographic decline may cause changes within the population structure of the species. The regent honeyeater, Anthochaera phrygia, is a highly nomadic woodland bird once common in its native southeast Australia. It has experienced a sharp decline in abundance since the late 1970s, following clearing of large areas of its preferred habitat, box-ironbark woodland, within the last 200 years. A captive breeding program has been established as part of efforts to restore this species. This study used genetic data to examine the range-wide population structure of regent honeyeaters, including spatial structure, its change through time, sex differences in philopatry and mobility, and genetic differences between the captive and wild populations. There was low genetic differentiation between birds captured in different geographic areas. Despite the recent demographic decline, low spatial structure appears to have some temporal consistency. Both sexes appear to be highly mobile, and there does not seem to be significant genetic differentiation between the captive and wild populations. We conclude that management efforts for survival of this species, including habitat protection, restoration, and release of captive-bred birds into the wild, can treat the species as effectively a single genetic population. PMID:26649426

  17. Human-Induced Landscape Changes Homogenize Atlantic Forest Bird Assemblages through Nested Species Loss.

    PubMed

    Villegas Vallejos, Marcelo Alejandro; Padial, André Andrian; Vitule, Jean Ricardo Simões

    2016-01-01

    The increasing number of quantitative assessments of homogenization using citizen science data is particularly important in the Neotropics, given its high biodiversity and ecological peculiarity, and whose communities may react differently to landscape changes. We looked for evidence of taxonomic homogenization in terrestrial birds by investigating patterns of beta diversity along a gradient of human-altered landscapes (HAL), trying to identify species associated with this process. We analyzed bird data from 87 sites sampled in a citizen science program in the south Brazilian Atlantic Forest. Regional-scale taxonomic homogenization was assessed by comparing beta diversity among sites in different HALs (natural, rural or urban landscapes) accounting for variation derived from geographical distance and zoogeographical affinities by georeferencing sites and determining their position in a phytogeographical domain. Beta diversity was calculated by multivariate dispersion and by testing compositional changes due to turnover and nestedness among HALs and phytogeographical domains. Finally, we assessed which species were typical for each group using indicator species analysis. Bird homogenization was indicated by decreases in beta diversity following landscape changes. Beta diversity of rural sites was roughly half that of natural habitats, while urban sites held less than 10% of the natural areas' beta diversity. Species composition analysis revealed that the turnover component was important in differentiating sites depending on HAL and phytogeography; the nestedness component was important among HALs, where directional species loss is maintained even considering effects of sampling effort. A similar result was obtained among phytogeographical domains, indicating nested-pattern dissimilarity among compositions of overlapping communities. As expected, a few native generalists and non-native urban specialists were characteristic of rural and urban sites. We generated

  18. Human-Induced Landscape Changes Homogenize Atlantic Forest Bird Assemblages through Nested Species Loss

    PubMed Central

    Villegas Vallejos, Marcelo Alejandro; Padial, André Andrian; Vitule, Jean Ricardo Simões

    2016-01-01

    The increasing number of quantitative assessments of homogenization using citizen science data is particularly important in the Neotropics, given its high biodiversity and ecological peculiarity, and whose communities may react differently to landscape changes. We looked for evidence of taxonomic homogenization in terrestrial birds by investigating patterns of beta diversity along a gradient of human-altered landscapes (HAL), trying to identify species associated with this process. We analyzed bird data from 87 sites sampled in a citizen science program in the south Brazilian Atlantic Forest. Regional-scale taxonomic homogenization was assessed by comparing beta diversity among sites in different HALs (natural, rural or urban landscapes) accounting for variation derived from geographical distance and zoogeographical affinities by georeferencing sites and determining their position in a phytogeographical domain. Beta diversity was calculated by multivariate dispersion and by testing compositional changes due to turnover and nestedness among HALs and phytogeographical domains. Finally, we assessed which species were typical for each group using indicator species analysis. Bird homogenization was indicated by decreases in beta diversity following landscape changes. Beta diversity of rural sites was roughly half that of natural habitats, while urban sites held less than 10% of the natural areas’ beta diversity. Species composition analysis revealed that the turnover component was important in differentiating sites depending on HAL and phytogeography; the nestedness component was important among HALs, where directional species loss is maintained even considering effects of sampling effort. A similar result was obtained among phytogeographical domains, indicating nested-pattern dissimilarity among compositions of overlapping communities. As expected, a few native generalists and non-native urban specialists were characteristic of rural and urban sites. We generated

  19. Species occurrence of marsh birds at Cape Cod National Seashore, Massachusetts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Erwin, R.M.; Conway, C.J.; Hadden, S.W.

    2002-01-01

    We initiated an inventory and a field test of a protocol that could be used for monitoring marsh birds at the Cape Cod National Seashore in eastern Massachusetts during 1999 and 2000, as part of a more comprehensive national effort. Using cassette tapes during call broadcast surveys, we visited a total of 78 survey points at freshwater, brackish, and salt marsh sites three times on the ground or in canoes during the breeding season (May-June), fall migration (September to November), and twice during winter (December-January). Observer bias on our marsh bird surveys appeared negligible. Although both auditory and visual detection of most species was low (mean ( 0.3 birds per replicate-survey point), we confirmed the presence of seven marsh species, including American Bittern (Botaurus lentiginosus), Least Bittern (Ixobrychus exilis), American Coot (Fulica americana), King Rail (Rallus elegans), Pied-billed Grebe (Podilymbus podiceps), Sora (Porzana carolina), and Virginia Rail (Railus limicola). We suspected breeding of Least Bitterns and Soras at Great Pond in Provincetown, and for Virginia Rails at Hatches Harbor, Provincetown. The most frequently detected species were Soras, Pied-billed Grebes, and Virginia Rails. We recommend using call broadcast surveys for these cryptic species to enhance their probabilities of detection.

  20. Seroprevalence and risk factors associated with hepatitis E virus infection in three species of pet birds in northwest China.

    PubMed

    Cong, Wei; Meng, Qing-Feng; Shan, Xiao-Feng; Sun, Wu-Wen; Qin, Si-Yuan; Zhang, Xiao-Xuan; Huang, Si-Yang; Qian, Ai-Dong

    2014-01-01

    Hepatitis E virus (HEV), the causative agent of hepatitis E, has been reported in a wide variety of animals, including birds, but little is known of HEV infection in pet birds in northwest China. The objective of the present investigation was to examine HEV seroprevalence in three species of pet birds, namely, Eurasian siskin, Oriental skylark, and black-tailed grosbeak from Gansu. Serum samples collected from 685 pet birds from August 2011 to September 2012 were examined independently for the presence of antibodies against HEV. A total of 59 (8.31%) pet birds were tested positive for HEV antibodies by the commercially available enzyme immunoassay kits. Of these, the seroprevalence was diverse in different species pet birds; the most frequent level was 10.83% (39/360) in Eurasian siskin, followed by 6.57% (19/289) in Oriental skylark, and 2.29% (1/36) in black-tailed grosbeak. Age and collecting region of pet birds were the main risk factors associated with HEV infection. The present study firstly revealed the seroprevalence of HEV infection in three species of pet birds in northwest China, which provided the baseline data for taking comprehensive countermeasures and measures for effectively preventing and controlling HEV infection in birds.

  1. Effects of natural gas development on three grassland bird species in CFB Suffield, Alberta, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hamilton, Laura Elizabeth

    I investigated the effect of energy sector development and introduced crested wheatgrass (Agropyron cristatum) on grassland birds on Canadian Forces Base Suffield. I conducted point counts and mapped breeding territories in 2007 and 2008 for Savannah sparrows ( Passerculus sandwichensis), chestnut-collared longspurs ( Calcarius ornatus), and Sprague's pipits (Anthus spragueii ). I found that Savannah sparrows favored areas with taller vegetation, human disturbances and crested wheatgrass in both years. Longspurs used shorter vegetation and in were tolerant of disturbance. Crested wheatgrass was avoided by longspurs in both years. Pipit territories contained similar vegetation to longspurs, were sensitive to disturbance, and avoided placing territories in areas containing crested wheatgrass or trails in both years. Well sites, pipelines and junctions were not avoided by the three species. My research suggests that reducing the number of trails and the spread of crested wheatgrass will increase habitat availability for sensitive species of grassland birds.

  2. Potential environmental contaminant risks to avian species at importnat bird areas in the northeastern United States.

    PubMed

    Rattner, Barnett A; Ackerson, Betty K

    2008-07-01

    Environmental contaminants can have profound effects on birds, acting from the molecular through population levels of biological organization. An analysis of potential contaminant threats was undertaken at 52 Important Bird Areas (IBAs) within the northeastern Atlantic coast drainage. Using geographic information system methodology, data layers describing or integrating contamination (impaired waters, fish or wildlife consumption advisories, toxic release inventory sites, and estimates of pesticide use) were overlaid on buffered IBA boundaries, and the relative threat at each site was ranked. Some species of birds residing at Jefferson National Forrest (NF), Stewart B. McKinney National Wildlife Refuge (NWR), Great Dismal Swamp NWR, Blue Ridge Parkway, Shenandoah National Park (NP), Adirondack Park, Edwin B. Forsythe NWR, George Washington NF, Green Mountain NF, Long Island Piping Plover Beaches, and Merrymeeting Bay may be threatened by environmental contaminants. These sites exhibited moderate to high percentages of impaired waters and had fish consumption advisories related to mercury and polychlorinated biphenyls, and were located in counties with substantial pesticide use. Endangered, threatened, and Watch List bird species are present at these sites. The Contaminant Exposure and Effects-Terrestrial Vertebrates database was searched within buffered IBA boundaries, and for a moderate number of sites there was concordance between the perceived risk and contaminant exposure. Several of the IBAs with apparently substantial contaminant threats had no avian ecotoxicological data (e.g., George Washington NF, Shenandoah NP). Based upon this screening level risk assessment, contaminant biomonitoring of birds is warranted at such sites, and data generated from these efforts could foster natural resource management activities.

  3. The influence of study species selection on estimates of pesticide exposure in free-ranging birds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Borges, Shannon L.; Vyas, Nimish B.; Christman, Mary C.

    2014-01-01

    Field studies of pesticide effects on birds often utilize indicator species with the purpose 16 of extrapolating to other avian taxa. Little guidance exists for choosing indicator species to 17 monitor the presence and/or effects of contaminants that are labile in the environment or body, 18 but are acutely toxic, such as anticholinesterase (anti-ChE) insecticides. Use of an indicator 19 species that does not represent maximum exposure and/or effects could lead to inaccurate risk 20 estimates. Our objective was to test the relevance of a priori selection of indicator species for a 21 study on pesticide exposure to birds inhabiting fruit orchards. We used total plasma 22 cholinesterase (ChE) activity and ChE reactivation to describe the variability in anti-ChE exposure among avian species in two conventionally managed fruit orchards. Of seven 24 species included in statistical analyses, the less common species, chipping sparrow (Spizella 25 passerina), showed the greatest percentage of exposed individuals and the greatest ChE 26 depression, whereas the two most common species, American robins (Turdus migratorius) and 27 grey catbirds (Dumatella carolinensis), did not show significant exposure. Due to their lower 28 abundance, chipping sparrows would have been an unlikely choice for study. Our results show 29 that selection of indicator species using traditionally accepted criteria such as abundance and 30 ease of collection may not identify species that are at greatest risk. Our efforts also demonstrate 31 the usefulness of conducting multiple-species pilot studies prior to initiating detailed studies on 32 pesticide effects. A study such as ours can help focus research and resources on study species 33 that are most appropriate.

  4. The Influence of Study Species Selection on Estimates of Pesticide Exposure in Free-Ranging Birds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borges, Shannon L.; Vyas, Nimish B.; Christman, Mary C.

    2014-02-01

    Field studies of pesticide effects on birds often utilize indicator species with the purpose of extrapolating to other avian taxa. Little guidance exists for choosing indicator species to monitor the presence and/or effects of contaminants that are labile in the environment or body, but are acutely toxic, such as anticholinesterase (anti-ChE) insecticides. Use of an indicator species that does not represent maximum exposure and/or effects could lead to inaccurate risk estimates. Our objective was to test the relevance of a priori selection of indicator species for a study on pesticide exposure to birds inhabiting fruit orchards. We used total plasma ChE activity and ChE reactivation to describe the variability in anti-ChE pesticide exposure among avian species in two conventionally managed fruit orchards. Of seven species included in statistical analyses, the less common species, chipping sparrow ( Spizella passerina), showed the greatest percentage of exposed individuals and the greatest ChE depression, whereas the two most common species, American robins ( Turdus migratorius) and gray catbirds ( Dumatella carolinensis), did not show significant exposure. Due to their lower abundance, chipping sparrows would have been an unlikely choice for study. Our results show that selection of indicator species using traditionally accepted criteria such as abundance and ease of collection may not identify species that are at greatest risk. Our efforts also demonstrate the usefulness of conducting multiple-species pilot studies prior to initiating detailed studies on pesticide effects. A study such as ours can help focus research and resources on study species that are most appropriate.

  5. Newly emergent and future threats of alien species to Pacific birds and ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Loope, Lloyd L.; Howarth, Francis G.; Kraus, Frederick; Pratt, Thane K.

    2001-01-01

    Although the devastating effects of established alien species to Pacific birds and ecosystems are generally well recognized by the avian conservation community, we raise the under appreciated issue of effects of incipient and future invasions. Although special attention to Pacific bird species “on the brink” is to a certain extent appropriate and necessary, a comparable focus on stopping new invasions appears desperately needed. All indications suggest that introductions will escalate with the trend toward ever increasing commerce and unrestricted trade unless stronger preventative measures are implemented very soon. The threat to Pacific island avifaunas from the brown tree snake (Bniga irregularis) is well-known, but as many as several hundred of the world’s snake species, some of which are repeatedly smuggled illegally as pets, might have similar impacts on native birds if transported to Pacific islands. We touch upon a sampling of obviously severe potential future threats, with the hope of raising awareness and resolve to fix the current woefully inadequate system for prevention of and rapid response to new invasions.

  6. Phenological differences among selected residents and long-distance migrant bird species in central Europe.

    PubMed

    Bartošová, Lenka; Trnka, Miroslav; Bauer, Zdeněk; Možný, Martin; Stěpánek, Petr; Zalud, Zdeněk

    2014-07-01

    The phenological responses to climate of residents and migrants (short- and long-distance) differ. Although few previous studies have focussed on this topic, the agree that changes in phenology are more apparent for residents than for long-distance migrants. We analysed the breeding times of two selected residents (Sitta europaea, Parus major) and one long-distance migrant (Ficedula albicollis) from 1961 to 2007 in central Europe. The timing of the phenophases of all three bird species showed a significant advance to earlier times. Nevertheless, the most marked shift was observed for the long-distance migrant (1.9 days per decade on average in mean laying date with linearity at the 99.9% confidence level). In contrast, the shifts shown by the residents were smaller (1.6 days for S. europaea and 1.5 days for P. major also on average in mean laying date for both, with linearity at the 95% confidence level). Spearman rank correlation coefficients calculated for pairs of phenophases of given bird species in 20-year subsamples (e.g. 1961-1980, 1962-1981) showed higher phenological separation between the residents and the migrant. This separation is most apparent after the 1980s. Thus, our results indicate that the interconnections between the studied phenological stages of the three bird species are becoming weaker. PMID:23640249

  7. An Evaluation of Techniques to Control Problem Bird Species on Landfill Sites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cook, Aonghais; Rushton, Steven; Allan, John; Baxter, Andrew

    2008-06-01

    Birds feeding on landfill sites cause problems in terms of nuisance to neighbors, flight safety, a threat to public health, and affecting the day to day site operation. A number of control measures exist to deter problem species; however, research into their effectiveness across sites and for multiple species has been limited. We use a modeling approach in order to assess the effectiveness of nine techniques — pyrotechnics, hand-held distress calls, static distress calls, blank ammunition, a combination of blank and lethal use of ammunition, the use of falcons, the use of hawks, wailers and helium-filled bird-scaring kites — at deterring three commonly recorded species — the Black-headed Gull ( Larus ridibundus), the Herring Gull ( Larus argentatus) and the Lesser Black-backed Gull ( Larus fuscus) — from six landfill sites across the United Kingdom. The use of distress calls, falconry, and combinations of lethal and nonlethal use of ammunition were the most effective techniques for initially deterring birds from these sites. However, when habituation is considered, there is a clear difference between techniques such as falconry, which have a lethal aspect and may act to reinforce the deterrence, and the use of techniques such as distress calls, which do not. However there are problems related to legislation and public perception when lethal techniques are used.

  8. Phenological differences among selected residents and long-distance migrant bird species in central Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bartošová, Lenka; Trnka, Miroslav; Bauer, Zdeněk; Možný, Martin; Štěpánek, Petr; Žalud, Zdeněk

    2013-05-01

    The phenological responses to climate of residents and migrants (short- and long-distance) differ. Although few previous studies have focussed on this topic, the agree that changes in phenology are more apparent for residents than for long-distance migrants. We analysed the breeding times of two selected residents (Sitta europaea, Parus major) and one long-distance migrant (Ficedula albicollis) from 1961 to 2007 in central Europe. The timing of the phenophases of all three bird species showed a significant advance to earlier times. Nevertheless, the most marked shift was observed for the long-distance migrant (1.9 days per decade on average in mean laying date with linearity at the 99.9 % confidence level). In contrast, the shifts shown by the residents were smaller (1.6 days for S. europaea and 1.5 days for P. major also on average in mean laying date for both, with linearity at the 95 % confidence level). Spearman rank correlation coefficients calculated for pairs of phenophases of given bird species in 20-year subsamples (e.g. 1961-1980, 1962-1981) showed higher phenological separation between the residents and the migrant. This separation is most apparent after the 1980s. Thus, our results indicate that the interconnections between the studied phenological stages of the three bird species are becoming weaker.

  9. Phenological differences among selected residents and long-distance migrant bird species in central Europe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bartošová, Lenka; Trnka, Miroslav; Bauer, Zdeněk; Možný, Martin; Štěpánek, Petr; Žalud, Zdeněk

    2014-07-01

    The phenological responses to climate of residents and migrants (short- and long-distance) differ. Although few previous studies have focussed on this topic, the agree that changes in phenology are more apparent for residents than for long-distance migrants. We analysed the breeding times of two selected residents ( Sitta europaea, Parus major) and one long-distance migrant ( Ficedula albicollis) from 1961 to 2007 in central Europe. The timing of the phenophases of all three bird species showed a significant advance to earlier times. Nevertheless, the most marked shift was observed for the long-distance migrant (1.9 days per decade on average in mean laying date with linearity at the 99.9 % confidence level). In contrast, the shifts shown by the residents were smaller (1.6 days for S. europaea and 1.5 days for P. major also on average in mean laying date for both, with linearity at the 95 % confidence level). Spearman rank correlation coefficients calculated for pairs of phenophases of given bird species in 20-year subsamples (e.g. 1961-1980, 1962-1981) showed higher phenological separation between the residents and the migrant. This separation is most apparent after the 1980s. Thus, our results indicate that the interconnections between the studied phenological stages of the three bird species are becoming weaker.

  10. An evaluation of techniques to control problem bird species on landfill sites.

    PubMed

    Cook, Aonghais; Rushton, Steven; Allan, John; Baxter, Andrew

    2008-06-01

    Birds feeding on landfill sites cause problems in terms of nuisance to neighbors, flight safety, a threat to public health, and affecting the day to day site operation. A number of control measures exist to deter problem species; however, research into their effectiveness across sites and for multiple species has been limited. We use a modeling approach in order to assess the effectiveness of nine techniques--pyrotechnics, hand-held distress calls, static distress calls, blank ammunition, a combination of blank and lethal use of ammunition, the use of falcons, the use of hawks, wailers and helium-filled bird-scaring kites --at deterring three commonly recorded species--the Black-headed Gull (Larus ridibundus), the Herring Gull (Larus argentatus) and the Lesser Black-backed Gull (Larus fuscus)--from six landfill sites across the United Kingdom. The use of distress calls, falconry, and combinations of lethal and nonlethal use of ammunition were the most effective techniques for initially deterring birds from these sites. However, when habituation is considered, there is a clear difference between techniques such as falconry, which have a lethal aspect and may act to reinforce the deterrence, and the use of techniques such as distress calls, which do not. However there are problems related to legislation and public perception when lethal techniques are used.

  11. A revision of the Afrotropical spider genus Cambalida Simon, 1909 (Araneae, Corinnidae)

    PubMed Central

    Haddad, Charles Richard

    2012-01-01

    Abstract The non-mimetic Afrotropical spider genus Cambalida Simon, 1909, placed within a subfamily of predominantly ant-mimicking spiders (Araneae: Corinnidae: Castianeirinae), is revised. Three species are transferred from Castianeira Keyserling, 1879 to Cambalida: Cambalida deminuta (Simon, 1909), comb. n., Cambalida fulvipes (Simon, 1896), comb. n. and Cambalida loricifera (Simon, 1885), comb. n.. A fourth species, Cambalida fagei (Caporiacco, 1939), comb. n., is transferred from Brachyphaea Simon, 1895 to Cambalida. Two species, Castianeira depygata Strand, 1916, syn. n. and Cambalida mestrali Lessert, 1921, syn. n., are considered junior synonyms of Cambalida fulvipes. The males of Cambalida deminuta and Cambalida loricifera are redescribed and their unknown females are described for the first time. The female and male of Cambalida fulvipes and Cambalida coriacea Simon, 1909 are also redescribed. The type material of the type species of the genus, Cambalida insulana Simon, 1909 from Pagalu (Annobon) Island, is lost, and only immature specimens have been subsequently collected from a nearby island. The species is regarded as a nomen dubium until fresh adult material can be collected. A replacement name, Cambalida simoni nom. n. is proposed for Cambalida fulvipes Simon, 1909, the latter being a secondary junior homonym of Cambalida fulvipes (Simon, 1896). The type material of this species is also lost and it is too considered nomen dubium. The following new species are described: Cambalida compressa sp. n. from West Africa, Cambalida dippenaarae sp. n. from southern Africa, Cambalida griswoldi sp. n. and Cambalida lineata sp. n. from Madagascar, and Cambalida unica sp. n. from Cameroon. Notes are provided on the biology of each species and the distribution of the genus in the Afrotropical Region. PMID:23372409

  12. Antimicrobial resistance patterns of Enterobacteriaceae in European wild bird species admitted in a wildlife rescue centre.

    PubMed

    Giacopello, Cristina; Foti, Maria; Mascetti, Antonietta; Grosso, Fabio; Ricciardi, Deborah; Fisichella, Vittorio; Lo Piccolo, Francesco

    2016-06-30

    Wild birds have been considered to be reservoirs of enteric human pathogens and vectors of resistance dissemination to the environment. During annual migration, they potentially play a role in the epidemiology of human associated zoonoses. The aim of this study was to investigate the frequency of isolation and antimicrobial susceptibility profiles of Enterobacteriaceae members isolated from cloacal swabs of common European wild birds. Fifty-five cloacal swabs were taken during birds' entrance evaluation in a rescue centre for injured wild birds in the Province of Messina (Sicily, Italy). All samples were examined for the presence of members of the family Enterobacteriaceae using standard methods and on the isolated strains antibiotic susceptibility testing was performed. Eighty three Enterobacteriaceae strains were isolated from raptors, waterbirds and passerines. The bacterial species isolated were: Escherichia coli, Proteus mirabilis, Proteus vulgaris, Citrobacter freundii, Enterobacter cloacae, Klebsiella oxytoca, Salmonella Typhimurium, Escherichia vulneris, Enterobacter amnigenus biogroup 2, Salmonella Duesseldorf and Hafnia alvei. The isolates showed significant frequencies of antibiotic resistance. Multiresistance to three or more groups of antibiotics also occurred. None of them have shown a phenotypic Extended Spectrum Beta Lactamase (ESBL) profile.

  13. Antimicrobial resistance patterns of Enterobacteriaceae in European wild bird species admitted in a wildlife rescue centre.

    PubMed

    Giacopello, Cristina; Foti, Maria; Mascetti, Antonietta; Grosso, Fabio; Ricciardi, Deborah; Fisichella, Vittorio; Lo Piccolo, Francesco

    2016-06-30

    Wild birds have been considered to be reservoirs of enteric human pathogens and vectors of resistance dissemination to the environment. During annual migration, they potentially play a role in the epidemiology of human associated zoonoses. The aim of this study was to investigate the frequency of isolation and antimicrobial susceptibility profiles of Enterobacteriaceae members isolated from cloacal swabs of common European wild birds. Fifty-five cloacal swabs were taken during birds' entrance evaluation in a rescue centre for injured wild birds in the Province of Messina (Sicily, Italy). All samples were examined for the presence of members of the family Enterobacteriaceae using standard methods and on the isolated strains antibiotic susceptibility testing was performed. Eighty three Enterobacteriaceae strains were isolated from raptors, waterbirds and passerines. The bacterial species isolated were: Escherichia coli, Proteus mirabilis, Proteus vulgaris, Citrobacter freundii, Enterobacter cloacae, Klebsiella oxytoca, Salmonella Typhimurium, Escherichia vulneris, Enterobacter amnigenus biogroup 2, Salmonella Duesseldorf and Hafnia alvei. The isolates showed significant frequencies of antibiotic resistance. Multiresistance to three or more groups of antibiotics also occurred. None of them have shown a phenotypic Extended Spectrum Beta Lactamase (ESBL) profile. PMID:27393875

  14. Ecological traits affect the response of tropical forest bird species to land-use intensity.

    PubMed

    Newbold, Tim; Scharlemann, Jörn P W; Butchart, Stuart H M; Sekercioğlu, Cağan H; Alkemade, Rob; Booth, Hollie; Purves, Drew W

    2013-01-01

    Land-use change is one of the main drivers of current and likely future biodiversity loss. Therefore, understanding how species are affected by it is crucial to guide conservation decisions. Species respond differently to land-use change, possibly related to their traits. Using pan-tropical data on bird occurrence and abundance across a human land-use intensity gradient, we tested the effects of seven traits on observed responses. A likelihood-based approach allowed us to quantify uncertainty in modelled responses, essential for applying the model to project future change. Compared with undisturbed habitats, the average probability of occurrence of bird species was 7.8 per cent and 31.4 per cent lower, and abundance declined by 3.7 per cent and 19.2 per cent in habitats with low and high human land-use intensity, respectively. Five of the seven traits tested affected the observed responses significantly: long-lived, large, non-migratory, primarily frugivorous or insectivorous forest specialists were both less likely to occur and less abundant in more intensively used habitats than short-lived, small, migratory, non-frugivorous/insectivorous habitat generalists. The finding that species responses to land use depend on their traits is important for understanding ecosystem functioning, because species' traits determine their contribution to ecosystem processes. Furthermore, the loss of species with particular traits might have implications for the delivery of ecosystem services.

  15. Two new species of spiruroid nematodes in birds from Kangean Island, Indonesia.

    PubMed

    Dewi, K; Zhang, L

    2010-09-01

    Two new species of spiruroid nematodes in birds from Kangean Island, Indonesia are reported: Diplotriaena anthreptis sp. nov. is found from the abdominal cavity of Anthreptes malacensis malacensis. The new species is similar to D. ozouxi, D. bargusinica, D. delta, D. isabellina and D. obtusa in the size of tridents and the length of spicules. However, it differs from the five similar species in the structure of the tridents, in the morphology of the right spicule, in the spicule ratio and in the size of the eggs. Acuaria irhami sp. nov. is described based on two male specimens from under the gizzard lining of Dicrurus hottentottus jentincki. The new species can be distinguished easily from all congeners except from A. microecae, in having equal rather than subequal or dissimilar spicules. However, the new species can be differentiated from A. microecae in the number of postanal papillae, in the median preanal papilla and in the length of the cordons.

  16. Microhabitat Selection by Three Common Bird Species of Montane Farmlands in Northern Greece

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsiakiris, Rigas; Stara, Kalliopi; Pantis, John; Sgardelis, Stefanos

    2009-11-01

    Common farmland birds are declining throughout Europe; however, marginal farmlands that escaped intensification or land abandonment remain a haven for farmland species in some Mediterranean mountains. The purpose of this study is to identify the most important anthropogenic microhabitat characteristics for Red-Backed Shrike ( Lanius collurio), Corn Bunting ( Miliaria calandra) and Common Whitethroat ( Sylvia communis) in three such areas within the newly established Northern Pindos National Park. We compare land use structural and physiognomic characteristics of the habitat within 133 plots containing birds paired with randomly selected “non-bird” plots. Using logistic regression and classification-tree models we identify the specific habitat requirements for each of the three birds. The three species show a preference for agricultural mosaics dominated by rangelands with scattered shrub or short trees mixed with arable land. Areas with dikes and dirt roads are preferred by all three species, while the presence of fences and periodically burned bushes and hedges are of particular importance for Red-Backed Shrike. Across the gradient of vegetation density and height, M. calandra is mostly found in grasslands with few dwarf shrubs and short trees, S. communis in places with more dense and tall vegetation of shrub, trees and hedges, and L. collurio, being a typical bird of ecotones, occurs in both habitats and in intermediate situations. In all cases those requirements are associated with habitat features maintained either directly or indirectly by the traditional agricultural activities in the area and particularly by the long established extensive controlled grazing that prevent shrub expansion.

  17. Evidence for adaptive evolution of olfactory receptor genes in 9 bird species.

    PubMed

    Steiger, Silke S; Fidler, Andrew E; Mueller, Jakob C; Kempenaers, Bart

    2010-01-01

    It has been suggested that positive selection, in particular selection favoring a change in the protein sequence, plays a role in the evolution of olfactory receptor (OR) gene repertoires in fish and mammals. ORs are 7-transmembrane domain (TM) proteins, members of the G-protein-coupled receptor superfamily in vertebrate genomes, and responsible for odorant binding and discrimination. OR gene repertoires in birds are surprisingly large and diverse, suggesting that birds have a keen olfactory sense. The aim of this study is to investigate signatures of positive selection in an expanded OR clade (group-gamma-c) that seems to be a characteristic of avian genomes. Using maximum-likelihood methods that estimate the d(N)/d(S) ratios and account for the effects of recombination, we show here that there is evidence for positive selection in group-gamma-c partial OR coding sequences of 9 bird species that are likely to have different olfactory abilities: the blue tit (Cyanistes caeruleus), the black coucal (Centropus grillii), the brown kiwi (Apteryx australis), the canary (Serinus canaria), the galah (Eolophus roseicapillus), the kakapo (Strigops habroptilus), the mallard (Anas platyrhynchos), the red jungle fowl (Gallus gallus), and the snow petrel (Pagodroma nivea). Positively selected codons were predominantly located in TMs, which in other vertebrates are involved in odorant binding. Our data suggest that 1) at least some avian OR genes have been subjected to adaptive evolution, 2) the extent of such adaptive evolution differs between bird species, and 3) positive selective pressures may have been stronger on the group-gamma-c OR genes of species that have well-developed olfactory abilities. PMID:19965911

  18. Offsets and conservation of the species of the EU habitats and birds directives.

    PubMed

    Regnery, Baptiste; Couvet, Denis; Kerbiriou, Christian

    2013-12-01

    Biodiversity offsets are intended to achieve no net loss of biodiversity due to economic and human development. A variety of biodiversity components are addressed by offset policies. It is required that loss of protected species due to development be offset under the EU Habitats and Birds Directives in Europe. We call this type of offset a species-equality offset because the offset pertains to the same species affected by the development project. Whether species equality can be achieved by offset design is unknown. We addressed this gap by reviewing derogation files (i.e., specific files that describe mitigation measures to ensure no net loss under the EU Habitats and Birds Directives) from 85 development projects in France (2009-2010). We collected information on type of effect (reversible vs. irreversible) and characteristics of affected and offset sites (i.e., types of species, total area). We analyzed how the type of effect and the affected-site characteristics influenced the occurrence of offset measures. The proportion of species targeted by offset measures (i.e., offset species) increased with the irreversibility of the effect of development and the conservation status of the species affected by development (i.e., affected species). Not all effects on endangered species (International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List) were offset; on average, 82% of affected species would be offset. Twenty-six percent of species of least concern were offset species. Thirty-five percent of development projects considered all affected species in their offset measures. Species richness was much lower in offset sites than in developed sites even after offset proposals. For developed areas where species richness was relatively high before development, species richness at offset sites was 5-10 times lower. The species-equality principle appears to have been applied only partially in offset policies, as in the EU directives. We suggest the application of this principle

  19. Offsets and conservation of the species of the EU habitats and birds directives.

    PubMed

    Regnery, Baptiste; Couvet, Denis; Kerbiriou, Christian

    2013-12-01

    Biodiversity offsets are intended to achieve no net loss of biodiversity due to economic and human development. A variety of biodiversity components are addressed by offset policies. It is required that loss of protected species due to development be offset under the EU Habitats and Birds Directives in Europe. We call this type of offset a species-equality offset because the offset pertains to the same species affected by the development project. Whether species equality can be achieved by offset design is unknown. We addressed this gap by reviewing derogation files (i.e., specific files that describe mitigation measures to ensure no net loss under the EU Habitats and Birds Directives) from 85 development projects in France (2009-2010). We collected information on type of effect (reversible vs. irreversible) and characteristics of affected and offset sites (i.e., types of species, total area). We analyzed how the type of effect and the affected-site characteristics influenced the occurrence of offset measures. The proportion of species targeted by offset measures (i.e., offset species) increased with the irreversibility of the effect of development and the conservation status of the species affected by development (i.e., affected species). Not all effects on endangered species (International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List) were offset; on average, 82% of affected species would be offset. Twenty-six percent of species of least concern were offset species. Thirty-five percent of development projects considered all affected species in their offset measures. Species richness was much lower in offset sites than in developed sites even after offset proposals. For developed areas where species richness was relatively high before development, species richness at offset sites was 5-10 times lower. The species-equality principle appears to have been applied only partially in offset policies, as in the EU directives. We suggest the application of this principle

  20. Bird Surveys at DARHT Before and During Operations: Comparison of Species Abundance and Composition and Trace Element Uptake

    SciTech Connect

    P. R. Fresquez, D. C. Keller, C. D. Hathcock

    2007-11-30

    The Dual-Axis Radiographic Hydrodynamic Test (DARHT) Facility Mitigation Action Plan specifies the comparison of baseline conditions in biotic and abiotic media with those collected after operations have started. Operations at DARHT at Los Alamos National Laboratory started in 2000. In this study, the abundance and composition of birds collected near the DARHT facility from 2003 through 2006 were determined and compared to a preoperational period (1999). In addition, the levels of radionuclides and other inorganic chemicals in birds were compared to regional statistical reference levels (RSRLs). The number and diversity of bird species generally increased over preoperational levels with the greatest number of birds (412) and species (46) occurring in 2005. The most common bird species collected regardless of time periods were the chipping sparrow (Spizella passerina), the Virginia's warbler (Vermivora virginiae), the western bluebird (Sialia mexicana), the broad-tailed hummingbird (Selasphorus platycercus), the sage sparrow (Amphispiza belli), and the western tanager (Piranga ludoviciana). Most radionuclides, with the exception of uranium-234 and uranium-238, in (whole body) birds collected after operations began were either not detected or below RSRLs. Uranium-234 and uranium-238 concentrations in a few samples were far below screening levels and do not pose a potential unacceptable dose to the birds. In contrast, many inorganic chemicals, particularly arsenic and silver, in birds collected before and after operations began were in higher concentrations than RSRLs. Because birds (skin plus feathers) collected in the years before operations began contained higher levels of arsenic and silver than RSRLs and because there was no evidence of these metals in soil and sediment directly around the DARHT facility, the elevated levels of these metals in birds during early operations are probably not related to DARHT operations. Arsenic and silver in birds, however, have

  1. Global versus local conservation focus of U.S. state agency endangered bird species lists.

    PubMed

    Wells, Jeffrey V; Robertson, Bruce; Rosenberg, Kenneth V; Mehlman, David W

    2010-01-06

    The development of species priorities for conservation at local or regional scales (for example, within a state or province) poses an interesting paradox. One the one hand, locally or regionally-derived species priorities may lead to greater interest in and resources directed to biodiversity conservation by local or regional institutions. On the other hand, locally or regionally-derived species priorities could overlook national or global priorities. We assessed U.S. state government agency endangered-threatened bird lists to determine the comparative representation of species of global versus local conservation significance on them. State lists tended to be represented primarily by species of low global risk-low global responsibility (range: 15-100%; mean 51%) and high global risk-high global responsibility (range: 0-73%; mean 35%). In 25 states, more than half of the species on the state lists were in the low global risk-low global responsibility category. Most U.S. state agency lists represent a combined strategy of highlighting species of both local and global conservation significance. Even with this combined local-global strategy, most state lists were predominated by species that represent local but not global conservation significance. Such a strategy could have profound negative consequences for many species that are not formally recognized under national endangered species protections but that are also left off of state-level endangered species lists.

  2. Habitat availability is a more plausible explanation than insecticide acute toxicity for U.S. grassland bird species declines

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Grassland bird species have experienced substantial declines in North America. These declines have been largely attributed to habitat loss and degradation, especially from agricultural practices and intensification (the habitat-availability hypothesis). A recent analysis of North American Breeding B...

  3. Laser Remote Sensing of Canopy Habitat Heterogeneity as a Predictor of Bird Species Richness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steinberg, D.; Goetz, S.; Dubayah, R.; Blair, B.; Jantz, P.

    2006-12-01

    Habitat heterogeneity has long been recognized as a fundamental variable indicative of species diversity, in terms of both richness and abundance. Satellite remote sensing data sets can be useful for quantifying habitat heterogeneity across a range of spatial scales. Past remote sensing analyses of species diversity have largely been limited to correlative studies based on the use of vegetation indices or derived land cover maps. A relatively new form of laser remote sensing (lidar) provides another means to acquire information on habitat heterogeneity. Here we examine the efficacy of lidar metrics of canopy structural diversity as predictors of bird species richness and abundance in the temperate forests of Maryland. Canopy height, topography and the vertical distribution of biomass were derived from lidar imagery of the Patuxent National Wildlife Refuge and compared to bird survey data collected at referenced grid locations. The vertical distribution of canopy elements was found to be the strongest predictor of both total richness and abundance. Species richness was predicted best when stratified by guilds dominated by forest, scrub, suburban and wetland species, with similar lidar variables selected as primary predictors across guilds. Generalized linear and additive models, as well as binary hierarchical regression trees produced similar results. The lidar metrics were consistently better predictors than traditional remotely sensed variables such as canopy cover, suggesting that lidar provides a valuable resource for biodiversity research applications. Recently available global lidar data sets permit extension of this analysis to broader spatial scales for which biodiversity observations exist.

  4. [Chewing-lice species (Phthiraptera) found on domestic and wild birds in Turkey].

    PubMed

    Dik, Bilal

    2010-01-01

    This study was carried out 48 domestic and wild bird samples belonging to 15 different species. Birds that were killed by traffic on the roads as well as birds that were ill or injured were brought for investigation to the Veterinary Faculty or Animal Keeping House of Konya Municipal. Firstly, all of them were inspected macroscopically for ectoparasites. Then, they were treated with an insecticidal drug, propoxur in a cartoon box. One long-eared owl, one Eurasian buzzard, four long-legged buzzards and five rock pigeons were found to be infested with lice, the others were not. The lice were mounted on slides into Canada balsam after being cleared in KOH 10 % and were identified to species under the light microscope. The lice were identified as Strigiphilus barbatus collected from the long-eared owl, as Kurodaia fulvofasciata collected from the Eurasian buzzard, as Crasspedorrhynchus platystomus, Degeeriella fulva, Colpocephalum nanum collected from long-legged buzzards and as Columbicola columbae collected from rock pigeons. This is the first time that Kurodaia fulvofasciata from the Eurasian buzzard and Strigiphilus barbatus from the long-eared owl has been recorded in Turkey.

  5. Causes and consequences of spatial variation in sex ratios in a declining bird species.

    PubMed

    Morrison, Catriona A; Robinson, Robert A; Clark, Jacquie A; Gill, Jennifer A

    2016-09-01

    Male-biased sex ratios occur in many bird species, particularly in those with small or declining populations, but the causes of these skews and their consequences for local population demography are rarely known. Within-species variation in sex ratios can help to identify the demographic and behavioural processes associated with such biases. Small populations may be more likely to have skewed sex ratios if sex differences in survival, recruitment or dispersal vary with local abundance. Analyses of species with highly variable local abundances can help to identify these mechanisms and the implications for spatial variation in demography. Many migratory bird species are currently undergoing rapid and severe declines in abundance in parts of their breeding ranges and thus have sufficient spatial variation in abundance to explore the extent of sex ratio biases, their causes and implications. Using national-scale bird ringing data for one such species (willow warbler, Phylloscopus trochilus), we show that sex ratios vary greatly across Britain and that male-biased sites are more frequent in areas of low abundance, which are now widespread across much of south and east England. These sex ratio biases are sufficient to impact local productivity, as the relative number of juveniles caught at survey sites declines significantly with increasing sex ratio skew. Sex differences in survival could influence this sex ratio variation, but we find little evidence for sex differences in survival increasing with sex ratio skew. In addition, sex ratios have become male-biased over the last two decades, but there are no such trends in adult survival rates for males or females. This suggests that lower female recruitment into low abundance sites is contributing to these skews. These findings suggest that male-biased sex ratios in small and declining populations can arise through local-scale sex differences in survival and dispersal, with females recruiting disproportionately into larger

  6. Wild birds of declining European species are dying from a thiamine deficiency syndrome

    PubMed Central

    Balk, Lennart; Hägerroth, Per-Åke; Åkerman, Gun; Hanson, Marsha; Tjärnlund, Ulla; Hansson, Tomas; Hallgrimsson, Gunnar Thor; Zebühr, Yngve; Broman, Dag; Mörner, Torsten; Sundberg, Henrik

    2009-01-01

    Wild birds of several species are dying in large numbers from an idiopathic paralytic disease in the Baltic Sea area. Here, we demonstrate strong relationships between this disease, breeding failure, and thiamine (vitamin B1) deficiency in eggs, pulli, and full-grown individuals. Thiamine is essential for vertebrates, and its diphosphorylated form functions as a cofactor for several life sustaining enzymes, whereas the triphosphorylated form is necessary for the functioning of neuronal membranes. Paralyzed individuals were remedied by thiamine treatment. Moreover, thiamine deficiency and detrimental effects on thiamine-dependent enzymes were demonstrated in the yolk, liver, and brain. We propose that the mortality and breeding failure are part of a thiamine deficiency syndrome, which may have contributed significantly to declines in many bird populations during the last decades. PMID:19597145

  7. Using a systematic approach to select flagship species for bird conservation.

    PubMed

    Veríssimo, Diogo; Pongiluppi, Tatiana; Santos, Maria Cintia M; Develey, Pedro F; Fraser, Iain; Smith, Robert J; MacMilan, Douglas C

    2014-02-01

    Conservation marketing campaigns that focus on flagship species play a vital role in biological diversity conservation because they raise funds and change people's behavior. However, most flagship species are selected without considering the target audience of the campaign, which can hamper the campaign's effectiveness. To address this problem, we used a systematic and stakeholder-driven approach to select flagship species for a conservation campaign in the Serra do Urubu in northeastern Brazil. We based our techniques on environmental economic and marketing methods. We used choice experiments to examine the species attributes that drive preference and latent-class models to segment respondents into groups by preferences and socioeconomic characteristics. We used respondent preferences and information on bird species inhabiting the Serra do Urubu to calculate a flagship species suitability score. We also asked respondents to indicate their favorite species from a set list to enable comparison between methods. The species' traits that drove audience preference were geographic distribution, population size, visibility, attractiveness, and survival in captivity. However, the importance of these factors differed among groups and groups differed in their views on whether species with small populations and the ability to survive in captivity should be prioritized. The popularity rankings of species differed between approaches, a result that was probably related to the different ways in which the 2 methods measured preference. Our new approach is a transparent and evidence-based method that can be used to refine the way stakeholders are engaged in the design of conservation marketing campaigns.

  8. Using a systematic approach to select flagship species for bird conservation.

    PubMed

    Veríssimo, Diogo; Pongiluppi, Tatiana; Santos, Maria Cintia M; Develey, Pedro F; Fraser, Iain; Smith, Robert J; MacMilan, Douglas C

    2014-02-01

    Conservation marketing campaigns that focus on flagship species play a vital role in biological diversity conservation because they raise funds and change people's behavior. However, most flagship species are selected without considering the target audience of the campaign, which can hamper the campaign's effectiveness. To address this problem, we used a systematic and stakeholder-driven approach to select flagship species for a conservation campaign in the Serra do Urubu in northeastern Brazil. We based our techniques on environmental economic and marketing methods. We used choice experiments to examine the species attributes that drive preference and latent-class models to segment respondents into groups by preferences and socioeconomic characteristics. We used respondent preferences and information on bird species inhabiting the Serra do Urubu to calculate a flagship species suitability score. We also asked respondents to indicate their favorite species from a set list to enable comparison between methods. The species' traits that drove audience preference were geographic distribution, population size, visibility, attractiveness, and survival in captivity. However, the importance of these factors differed among groups and groups differed in their views on whether species with small populations and the ability to survive in captivity should be prioritized. The popularity rankings of species differed between approaches, a result that was probably related to the different ways in which the 2 methods measured preference. Our new approach is a transparent and evidence-based method that can be used to refine the way stakeholders are engaged in the design of conservation marketing campaigns. PMID:24033848

  9. Birds, Birds, Birds!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Braus, Judy, Ed.

    1992-01-01

    Ranger Rick's Nature Scope is a creative education series dedicated to inspiring in children an understanding and appreciation of the natural world while developing the skills they will need to make responsible decisions about the environment. Contents are organized into the following sections: (1) "What Makes a Bird a Bird?," which provides…

  10. Breeding ecology and nesting habitat associations of five marsh bird species in western New York

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lor, S.; Malecki, R.A.

    2006-01-01

    Nesting habitats and nest success of five species of marsh birds were studied during 1997 and 1998 at the Iroquois National Wildlife Refuge (NWR) and the adjacent Oak Orchard and Tonawanda State Wildlife Management Areas (WMA) located in western New York. Nest searches located 18 American Bittern (Botaurus lentiginosus), 117 Least Bittern (Ixobrychus exilis), 189 Pied-billed Grebe (Podilymbus podiceps), 23 Sora (Porzana carolina), and 72 Virginia Rail (Rallus limicola) nests. Average nest densities in 1998, our best nest searching year, ranged from 0.01/ha for Soras (N = 8) to 0.28/ha for Pied-billed Grebes (N = 160). Mayfield nest success estimates for Least Bittern were 80% (N = 16) in 1997 and 46% (N = 37) in 1998. Nest success estimates were 72% (N = 55) for Pied-billed Grebe, 43% (N = 6) for Sora, and 38% (N = 20) for Virginia Rail. Nests of all five species were located in ???70% emergent vegetation with a mean water depth of 24-56 cm and an average vegetation height that ranged from 69-133 cm. Logistic regression models were developed for each species using habitat variables at nest and random site locations. Each model was ranked with Akaike's Information Criterion for small sample size (AICc). In general, our best models indicated that increased emergent vegetation and horizontal cover with shallow water depths improved the odds of encountering marsh bird nests in the wetlands of western New York. We suggest that managing wetlands as a complex, at different stages of succession, would best benefit marsh bird species.

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

    PubMed

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

    2011-02-01

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

  12. Efficiency of playback for assessing the occurrence of five bird species in Brazilian Atlantic Forest fragments.

    PubMed

    Boscolo, Danilo; Metzger, Jean Paul; Vielliard, Jacques M E

    2006-12-01

    Playback of bird songs is a useful technique for species detection; however, this method is usually not standardized. We tested playback efficiency for five Atlantic Forest birds (White-browed Warbler Basileuterus leucoblepharus, Giant Antshrike Batara cinerea, Swallow-tailed Manakin Chiroxiphia caudata, Whiteshouldered Fire-eye Pyriglena leucoptera and Surucua Trogon Trogon surrucura) for different time of the day, season of the year and species abundance at the Morro Grande Forest Reserve (South-eastern Brazil) and at thirteen forest fragments in a nearby landscape. Vocalizations were broadcasted monthly at sunrise, noon and sunset, during one year. For B. leucoblepharus, C. caudata and T. surrucura, sunrise and noon were more efficient than sunset. Batara cinerea presented higher efficiency from July to October. Playback expanded the favourable period for avifaunal surveys in tropical forest, usually restricted to early morning in the breeding season. The playback was efficient in detecting the presence of all species when the abundance was not too low. But only B. leucoblepharus and T. surrucura showed abundance values significantly related to this efficiency. The present study provided a precise indication of the best daily and seasonal periods and a confidence interval to maximize the efficiency of playback to detect the occurrence of these forest species. PMID:17143403

  13. Spatial variation of haemosporidian parasite infection in African rainforest bird species.

    PubMed

    Loiseau, Claire; Iezhova, Tatjana; Valkiūnas, Gediminas; Chasar, Anthony; Hutchinson, Anna; Buermann, Wolfgang; Smith, Thomas B; Sehgal, Ravinder N M

    2010-02-01

    Spatial heterogeneity influences the distribution, prevalence, and diversity of haemosporidian parasites. Previous studies have found complex patterns of prevalence with respect to habitat characteristics and parasite genotype, and their interactions, but there is little information regarding how parasitemia intensity and the prevalence of co-infections may vary in space. Here, using both molecular methods and microscopy, we report an analysis of the variation of parasitemia intensity and co-infections of avian haemosporidian parasites ( Plasmodium and Haemoproteus species) in 2 common African birds species, the yellow-whiskered greenbul ( Andropadus latirostris ) and the olive sunbird ( Cyanomitra olivacea ), at 3 sites with distinct habitat characteristics in Ghana. First, we found an interaction between the site and host species for the prevalence of Plasmodium spp. and Haemoproteus spp. For the olive sunbird, the prevalence of Plasmodium spp., as well as the number of individuals with co-infections, varied significantly among the sites, but these measures remained constant for the yellow-whiskered greenbul. In addition, yellow-whiskered greenbuls infected with Haemoproteus spp. were found only at 1 site. Furthermore, for both bird species, the parasitemia intensity of Plasmodium spp. varied significantly among the 3 sites, but with opposing trends. These results suggest that spatial heterogeneity differently affects haemosporidian infection parameters in these vertebrate-hosts. Environmental conditions here can either favor or reduce parasite infection. We discuss the implications of these discrepancies for conservation and ecological studies of infectious diseases in natural populations.

  14. Declines in abundance and species richness of birds following a major flood on the upper Mississippi River

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knutson, M.G.; Klaas, E.E.

    1997-01-01

    We examined the abundance and species richness of birds breeding in floodplain forests of the Upper Mississippi River in 1992 through 1994, and used a two-way ANOVA with repeated measures to identify effects of a 1993 flood on the bird community. Sixty-five study plots were divided into treatment and control plots based on whether they were flooded in 1993. Among 84 species observed on all plots, 41 species decreased in abundance from 1992 to 1994, 13 increased, 5 were unchanged. Sample sizes were inadequate to evaluate trends for 25 species. Species richness declined over the three-year period. Of 36 species tested with the ANOVA, 20 had a significant main effect of Year. Cool, wet conditions may have contributed to poor reproductive success in 1993, and resulted in widespread decline in floodplain bird abundance during the year following the flood. Bird abundance increased on most unflooded plots in 1993, probably because birds were displaced from flooded plots. This pattern was most striking for neotropical migrants, species preferring habitat edges, lower canopy nesters, and species that forage in the air. We suggest that periodic major flooding may maintain suitable floodplain habitat for Prothonotary Warblers (Protonotaria citrea) in the face of competition from House Wrens (Troglodytes aedon) for nest sites.

  15. Effects of salinity on the larvae of some Afrotropical anopheline mosquitoes.

    PubMed

    Coetzee, M; Le Sueur, D

    1988-10-01

    Laboratory experiments showed that the larvae of some freshwater-breeding Afrotropical anopheline species exhibit various degrees of tolerance to 25% sea-water. At 24 degrees C, survival rates from egg to fourth instar larva were significantly less in salt-water than in freshwater for four species: 39.5% versus 55.4% for Anopheles tenebrosus Dönitz, 31.9% versus 86.2% for An. mousinhoi De Meillon & Pereira, 3.5% versus 67.9% for An. pharoensis Theobald and 3.9% versus 41.9% for An. quadriannulatus (Theobald). Conversely, An. merus Dönitz showed a significantly better survival rate of 46.4% in 25% sea-water compared with 15.5% in freshwater. Simulated winter conditions did not significantly change these differential survival rates of An. merus. Effects of salinity on the anal papillae of third instar larvae are discussed. PMID:2980197

  16. Metal concentrations in three species of passerine birds breeding in the Hackensack Meadowlands of New Jersey

    SciTech Connect

    Tsipoura, Nellie; Burger, Joanna Feltes, Ross; Yacabucci, Janet; Mizrahi, David; Jeitner, Christian; Gochfeld, Michael

    2008-06-15

    The New Jersey Meadowlands is an important natural area, a diverse mosaic of wetland habitats positioned within the heavily urbanized NY City Metropolitan area and the NY/NJ Harbor. Persistent contaminants may pose threats to wildlife inhabiting these habitats, affecting reproduction, egg hatchability, nestling survivorship, and neurobehavioral development. Metals of concern in the Meadowlands include arsenic, cadmium, chromium, lead, and mercury. These metals were analyzed in feathers and blood of three passerine birds breeding in wetland habitats, including red-winged blackbirds (Agelaius phoeniceus), marsh wrens (Cistothorus palustris), and tree swallow (Tachycineta bicolor), as well as eggs of the first two species. These widespread species are abundant in wetland habitats across the Meadowlands District, and eat insects and other invertebrates. Lead levels were low in eggs, higher in feathers and very elevated in blood in all species compared to those that have been reported for other bird species. Lead levels were especially high in blood of marsh wren (mean of 0.8 ppm) and swallow (mean of 0.94 ppm, wet weight). Levels of lead in the blood for all three species sampled were higher than the negative impact threshold of 0.4 ppm. Mercury levels, while below the levels considered biologically harmful, were higher in eggs (mean of 0.2, wet weight) and feathers (3.2 ppm, dry weight) of marsh wren from Meadowlands than those seen in other passerines, and even some fish-eating birds. Furthermore, unhatched wren eggs had higher mercury levels (0.3 ppm, wet weight) than eggs randomly selected before hatch (0.18 ppm, wet weight). Blood tissue levels of mercury were low in all three species (mean of less than 0.035 ppm, wet weight). Chromium levels were relatively high in eggs and in blood, but lower in feathers when compared to those reported in the literature. Cadmium and arsenic levels were generally low for all tissues and in all species studied compared to those

  17. Monitoring of the Bagaza virus epidemic in wild bird species in Spain, 2010.

    PubMed

    García-Bocanegra, I; Zorrilla, I; Rodríguez, E; Rayas, E; Camacho, L; Redondo, I; Gómez-Guillamón, F

    2013-04-01

    By the end of August 2010, high mortalities in red-legged partridges (Alectoris rufa) and pheasants (Phasianus colchicus) were detected in several hunting states in the province of Cádiz (southern Spain). Retrospective epidemiological studies revealed that the first clinical signs had been observed in late July-early August. The most common clinical signs were incoordination, disorientation and ataxia. The estimated mean morbidity rates were 37% in partridges and 11% in pheasants. The estimated mean mortality rates were 23% in partridges and 6% in pheasants. The estimated mean case-fatality rates were 38% and 8% in partridges and pheasants, respectively. A total of 19 clinically affected birds from 18 affected hunting states were analysed between August and November 2011. Histopathological analyses revealed encephalitis, myocarditis, leiomyositis, meningoencephalitis and neuritis as the most frequently observed lesions. Molecular analyses identified Bagaza virus (BAGV) as the causative agent of the epidemic. Further studies are needed to determine the source of introduction of the virus into Europe and to elucidate whether wild birds play a role in the epidemiology of BAGV. Surveillance in susceptible bird species, including partridges and pheasants, may be useful for the early detection of BAGV in an area.

  18. Potential environmental contaminant risks to avian species at important bird areas in the northeastern United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rattner, B.A.; Ackerson, B.K.

    2008-01-01

    Environmental contaminants can have profound effects on birds, acting from the molecular through population levels of biological organization. An analysis of potential contaminant threats was undertaken at 52 Important Bird Areas (IBAs) within the northeastern Atlantic coast drainage. Using geographic information system methodology, data layers describing or integrating contamination (impaired waters, fish or wildlife consumption advisories, toxic release inventory sites, and estimates of pesticide use) were overlaid on buffered IBA boundaries, and the relative threat at each site was ranked. The most threatened sites include Jefferson National Forest (NF), Stewart B. McKinney National Wildlife Refuge (NWR), Great Dismal Swamp NWR, Blue Ridge Parkway, Shenandoah National Park (NP), Adirondack Park, Edwin B. Forsythe NWR, George Washington NF, Green Mountain NF, Long Island Piping Plover Beaches, and Merrymeeting Bay. These sites exhibited moderate to high percentages of impaired waters and had fish consumption advisories related to mercury and polychlorinated biphenyls, and were located in counties with substantial pesticide use. Endangered, threatened and Watch List bird species are present at these sites. The Contaminant Exposure and Effects--Terrestrial Vertebrates database was searched within buffered IBA boundaries, and for a moderate number of sites there was concordance between the perceived risk and contaminant exposure. Several of the IBAs with apparently substantial contaminant threats had no avian ecotoxicological data (e.g., George Washington NF, Shenandoah NP). Based upon this screening level risk assessment, contaminant biomonitoring is warranted at such sites, and data generated from these efforts should foster natural resource management activities.

  19. Survival and population size of a resident bird species are declining as temperature increases.

    PubMed

    Santisteban, Leonard; Benkman, Craig W; Fetz, Trevor; Smith, Julie W

    2012-03-01

    1. A large number of migratory bird species appear to be declining as the result of climate change, but whether resident bird species have or will be adversely affected by climate change is less clear. We focus on the South Hills crossbill (Loxia curvirostra complex), which is endemic to about 70 km(2) of Rocky Mountain lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta latifolia) forest in southern Idaho, USA. 2. Our results indicate that the South Hills crossbill has declined by over 60% between 2003 and 2008, and that decreasing adult survival drives this population decline. 3. We evaluated the relative support for multiple hypotheses linking crossbill survival to climate, an ectoparasitic mite (scaly-leg mites Knemidokoptes jamaicensis), and the recent emergence of West Nile virus. Changes in adult apparent survival rate were closely associated with average spring and annual temperatures, and with high temperatures (≥32 °C) during summer, which have increased during the last decade. In contrast, there was little evidence that scaly-leg mites or West Nile virus contributed to recent declines in adult survival. 4. The most probable mechanism causing the decline in adult survival and population size is a decrease in the availability of their primary food resource, seeds in serotinous pine cones. Cone production has declined with increasing annual temperatures, and these cones appear to be prematurely opening owing to increasingly hot summer conditions releasing their seeds and reducing the carrying capacity for crossbills later in the year. 5. In light of regional climate change forecasts, which include an increase in both annual temperature and hot days (>32 °C), and the likely disappearance of lodgepole pine from southern Idaho by the end of this century, additional research is needed to determine how to maintain lodgepole pine forests and their supply of seeds to conserve one of the few bird species endemic to the continental United States.

  20. Survival and population size of a resident bird species are declining as temperature increases.

    PubMed

    Santisteban, Leonard; Benkman, Craig W; Fetz, Trevor; Smith, Julie W

    2012-03-01

    1. A large number of migratory bird species appear to be declining as the result of climate change, but whether resident bird species have or will be adversely affected by climate change is less clear. We focus on the South Hills crossbill (Loxia curvirostra complex), which is endemic to about 70 km(2) of Rocky Mountain lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta latifolia) forest in southern Idaho, USA. 2. Our results indicate that the South Hills crossbill has declined by over 60% between 2003 and 2008, and that decreasing adult survival drives this population decline. 3. We evaluated the relative support for multiple hypotheses linking crossbill survival to climate, an ectoparasitic mite (scaly-leg mites Knemidokoptes jamaicensis), and the recent emergence of West Nile virus. Changes in adult apparent survival rate were closely associated with average spring and annual temperatures, and with high temperatures (≥32 °C) during summer, which have increased during the last decade. In contrast, there was little evidence that scaly-leg mites or West Nile virus contributed to recent declines in adult survival. 4. The most probable mechanism causing the decline in adult survival and population size is a decrease in the availability of their primary food resource, seeds in serotinous pine cones. Cone production has declined with increasing annual temperatures, and these cones appear to be prematurely opening owing to increasingly hot summer conditions releasing their seeds and reducing the carrying capacity for crossbills later in the year. 5. In light of regional climate change forecasts, which include an increase in both annual temperature and hot days (>32 °C), and the likely disappearance of lodgepole pine from southern Idaho by the end of this century, additional research is needed to determine how to maintain lodgepole pine forests and their supply of seeds to conserve one of the few bird species endemic to the continental United States. PMID:22010811

  1. Characterization of Cholinesterases in Plasma of Three Portuguese Native Bird Species: Application to Biomonitoring

    PubMed Central

    Santos, Cátia S. A.; Monteiro, Marta S.; Soares, Amadeu M. V. M.; Loureiro, Susana

    2012-01-01

    Over the last decades the inhibition of plasma cholinesterase (ChE) activity has been widely used as a biomarker to diagnose organophosphate and carbamate exposure. Plasma ChE activity is a useful and non-invasive method to monitor bird exposure to anticholinesterase compounds; nonetheless several studies had shown that the ChE form(s) present in avian plasma may vary greatly among species. In order to support further biomonitoring studies and provide reference data for wildlife risk-assessment, plasma cholinesterase of the northern gannet (Morus bassanus), the white stork (Ciconia ciconia) and the grey heron (Ardea cinerea) were characterized using three substrates (acetylthiocholine iodide, propionylthiocholine iodide, and S-butyrylthiocholine iodide) and three ChE inhibitors (eserine sulphate, BW284C51, and iso-OMPA). Additionally, the range of ChE activity that may be considered as basal levels for non-exposed individuals was determined. The results suggest that in the plasma of the three species studied the main cholinesterase form present is butyrylcholinesterase (BChE). Plasma BChE activity in non-exposed individuals was 0.48±0.11 SD U/ml, 0.39±0.12 SD U/ml, 0.15±0.04 SD U/ml in the northern gannet, white stork and grey heron, respectively. These results are crucial for the further use of plasma BChE activity in these bird species as a contamination bioindicator of anti-cholinesterase agents in both wetland and marine environments. Our findings also underscore the importance of plasma ChE characterization before its use as a biomarker in biomonitoring studies with birds. PMID:22470503

  2. Anatomy and histology of the Fibrocartilago humerocapsularis in some species of European wild birds.

    PubMed

    Canova, Marco; Bombardi, Cristiano; De Sordi, Nadia; Clavenzani, Paolo; Grandis, Annamaria

    2014-07-01

    The occurrence and structure of the fibrocartilago humerocapsularis (FHC) in the shoulders of 72 subjects of various species of wild birds were evaluated by gross dissection and histological examination with the purpose of increasing the body of knowledge regarding this structure and verifying the functional hypotheses submitted in the past in other species. The results showed that the FHC has a conical shape with a narrow cavity on the inside. The structure is heterogeneous in the various species and consists of different tissues, such as hyaline cartilage, fibrous cartilage, and bone. From the data obtained in this study, there does not appear to be any correlation between ossification and the weight of the prey lifted, wing shape, and aging. This study also provided interesting preliminary data regarding the ossification of the FHC. In fact, in the Hooded Crow (Corvus cornix), the ossification seemed to be correlated with the mechanical stimulation of flying. Additional studies are necessary to confirm this hypothesis.

  3. Bajan Birds Pull Strings: Two Wild Antillean Species Enter the Select Club of String-Pullers.

    PubMed

    Audet, Jean-Nicolas; Ducatez, Simon; Lefebvre, Louis

    2016-01-01

    String-pulling is one of the most popular tests in animal cognition because of its apparent complexity, and of its potential to be applied to very different taxa. In birds, the basic procedure involves a food reward, suspended from a perch by a string, which can be reached by a series of coordinated pulling actions with the beak and holding actions of the pulled lengths of string with the foot. The taxonomic distribution of species that pass the test includes several corvids, parrots and parids, but in other families, data are much spottier and the number of individuals per species that succeed is often low. To date, the association between string-pulling ability and other cognitive traits was never tested. It is generally assumed that string-pulling is a complex form of problem-solving, suggesting that performance on string-pulling and other problem-solving tasks should be correlated. Here, we show that individuals of two innovative species from Barbados, the bullfinch Loxigilla barbadensis and the Carib grackle Quiscalus lugubris fortirostris, pass the string-pulling test. Eighteen of the 42 bullfinches tested succeeded, allowing us to correlate performance on this test to that on several other behavioral measurements. Surprisingly, string-pulling in bullfinches was unrelated to shyness, neophobia, problem-solving, discrimination and reversal learning performance. Only two of 31 grackles tested succeeded, precluding correlational analyses with other measures but still, the two successful birds largely differed in their other behavioral traits. PMID:27533282

  4. Bajan Birds Pull Strings: Two Wild Antillean Species Enter the Select Club of String-Pullers

    PubMed Central

    Ducatez, Simon; Lefebvre, Louis

    2016-01-01

    String-pulling is one of the most popular tests in animal cognition because of its apparent complexity, and of its potential to be applied to very different taxa. In birds, the basic procedure involves a food reward, suspended from a perch by a string, which can be reached by a series of coordinated pulling actions with the beak and holding actions of the pulled lengths of string with the foot. The taxonomic distribution of species that pass the test includes several corvids, parrots and parids, but in other families, data are much spottier and the number of individuals per species that succeed is often low. To date, the association between string-pulling ability and other cognitive traits was never tested. It is generally assumed that string-pulling is a complex form of problem-solving, suggesting that performance on string-pulling and other problem-solving tasks should be correlated. Here, we show that individuals of two innovative species from Barbados, the bullfinch Loxigilla barbadensis and the Carib grackle Quiscalus lugubris fortirostris, pass the string-pulling test. Eighteen of the 42 bullfinches tested succeeded, allowing us to correlate performance on this test to that on several other behavioral measurements. Surprisingly, string-pulling in bullfinches was unrelated to shyness, neophobia, problem-solving, discrimination and reversal learning performance. Only two of 31 grackles tested succeeded, precluding correlational analyses with other measures but still, the two successful birds largely differed in their other behavioral traits. PMID:27533282

  5. Formulated Beta-Cyfluthrin Shows Wide Divergence in Toxicity among Bird Species

    PubMed Central

    Addy-Orduna, Laura M.; Zaccagnini, María-Elena; Canavelli, Sonia B.; Mineau, Pierre

    2011-01-01

    It is generally assumed that the toxicity of pyrethroid insecticides to birds is negligible, though few species have been tested. The oral acute toxicity of formulated beta-cyfluthrin was determined for canaries (Serinus sp.), shiny cowbirds (Molothrus bonariensis), and eared doves (Zenaida auriculata). Single doses were administered to adults by gavage. Approximate lethal doses 50 (LD50) and their confidence intervals were determined by approximate D-optimal design. Canaries were found to be substantially more sensitive to formulated beta-cyfluthrin (LD50 = (170 ± 41) mg/kg) than the other two species tested (LD50 = (2234 ± 544) mg/kg and LD50 = (2271 ± 433) mg/kg, resp.). The LD50 obtained for canaries was also considerably lower than typical toxicity values available in the literature for pyrethroids. This study emphasizes the need for testing a broader range of species with potentially toxic insecticides, using modern up and down test designs with minimal numbers of birds. PMID:21584255

  6. Bajan Birds Pull Strings: Two Wild Antillean Species Enter the Select Club of String-Pullers.

    PubMed

    Audet, Jean-Nicolas; Ducatez, Simon; Lefebvre, Louis

    2016-01-01

    String-pulling is one of the most popular tests in animal cognition because of its apparent complexity, and of its potential to be applied to very different taxa. In birds, the basic procedure involves a food reward, suspended from a perch by a string, which can be reached by a series of coordinated pulling actions with the beak and holding actions of the pulled lengths of string with the foot. The taxonomic distribution of species that pass the test includes several corvids, parrots and parids, but in other families, data are much spottier and the number of individuals per species that succeed is often low. To date, the association between string-pulling ability and other cognitive traits was never tested. It is generally assumed that string-pulling is a complex form of problem-solving, suggesting that performance on string-pulling and other problem-solving tasks should be correlated. Here, we show that individuals of two innovative species from Barbados, the bullfinch Loxigilla barbadensis and the Carib grackle Quiscalus lugubris fortirostris, pass the string-pulling test. Eighteen of the 42 bullfinches tested succeeded, allowing us to correlate performance on this test to that on several other behavioral measurements. Surprisingly, string-pulling in bullfinches was unrelated to shyness, neophobia, problem-solving, discrimination and reversal learning performance. Only two of 31 grackles tested succeeded, precluding correlational analyses with other measures but still, the two successful birds largely differed in their other behavioral traits.

  7. Potential environmental contaminant risks to avian species at important bird areas in the northeastern United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rattner, B.A.; Ackerson, B.K.

    2007-01-01

    Environmental contaminants, acting at molecular through population levels of biological organization, can have profound effects upon birds. A screening level risk assessment was conducted that examined potential contaminant threats at 52 Important Bird Areas (IBAs) in the northeastern Atlantic coast drainage. Using geographic information system methodology, data layers describing or integrating pollutant hazards (impaired waters, fish or wildlife consumption advisories, toxic release inventory data, estimated pesticide use and hazard) were overlaid on buffered IBA boundaries, and the relative contaminant threat for each site was ranked. The 10 sites identified as having the greatest contaminant threats included Jefferson National Forest, Stewart B. McKinney National Wildlife Refuge, Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge, Blue Ridge Parkway, Shenandoah National Park, Adirondack Park, Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge, George Washington National Forest, Green Mountain National Forest, and Long Island Piping Plover Beaches. These sites accounted for over 50% of the entire study area, and in general had moderate to high percentages of impaired waters, fish consumption advisories related to mercury and PCBs, and were located in counties with substantial application rates of pesticides known to be toxic to birds. Avian species at these IBAs include Federally endangered Roseate terns (Sterna dougallii), threatened piping plovers (Charadrius melodus), neotropical migrants, Bicknell?s thrush (Catharus bicknelli), Swainson?s warbler (Limnothlypis swainsonii) and wintering brant geese (Branta bernicla). Extant data for free-ranging birds from the Contaminant Exposure and Effects--Terrestrial Vertebrates database were examined within the buffered boundaries of each IBA, and for a moderate number of sites there was qualitative concordance between the perceived risk and actual contaminant exposure data. However, several of the IBAs with substantial contaminant

  8. Biological, ecological, conservation and legal information for all species and subspecies of Australian bird.

    PubMed

    Garnett, Stephen T; Duursma, Daisy E; Ehmke, Glenn; Guay, Patrick-Jean; Stewart, Alistair; Szabo, Judit K; Weston, Michael A; Bennett, Simon; Crowley, Gabriel M; Drynan, David; Dutson, Guy; Fitzherbert, Kate; Franklin, Donald C

    2015-01-01

    We introduce a dataset of biological, ecological, conservation and legal information for every species and subspecies of Australian bird, 2056 taxa or populations in total. Version 1 contains 230 fields grouped under the following headings: Taxonomy & nomenclature, Phylogeny, Australian population status, Conservation status, Legal status, Distribution, Morphology, Habitat, Food, Behaviour, Breeding, Mobility and Climate metrics. It is envisaged that the dataset will be updated periodically with new data for existing fields and the addition of new fields. The dataset has already had, and will continue to have applications in Australian and international ornithology, especially those that require standard information for a large number of taxa.

  9. Biological, ecological, conservation and legal information for all species and subspecies of Australian bird

    PubMed Central

    Garnett, Stephen T.; Duursma, Daisy E.; Ehmke, Glenn; Guay, Patrick-Jean; Stewart, Alistair; Szabo, Judit K.; Weston, Michael A.; Bennett, Simon; Crowley, Gabriel M.; Drynan, David; Dutson, Guy; Fitzherbert, Kate; Franklin, Donald C.

    2015-01-01

    We introduce a dataset of biological, ecological, conservation and legal information for every species and subspecies of Australian bird, 2056 taxa or populations in total. Version 1 contains 230 fields grouped under the following headings: Taxonomy & nomenclature, Phylogeny, Australian population status, Conservation status, Legal status, Distribution, Morphology, Habitat, Food, Behaviour, Breeding, Mobility and Climate metrics. It is envisaged that the dataset will be updated periodically with new data for existing fields and the addition of new fields. The dataset has already had, and will continue to have applications in Australian and international ornithology, especially those that require standard information for a large number of taxa. PMID:26594379

  10. Biological, ecological, conservation and legal information for all species and subspecies of Australian bird.

    PubMed

    Garnett, Stephen T; Duursma, Daisy E; Ehmke, Glenn; Guay, Patrick-Jean; Stewart, Alistair; Szabo, Judit K; Weston, Michael A; Bennett, Simon; Crowley, Gabriel M; Drynan, David; Dutson, Guy; Fitzherbert, Kate; Franklin, Donald C

    2015-01-01

    We introduce a dataset of biological, ecological, conservation and legal information for every species and subspecies of Australian bird, 2056 taxa or populations in total. Version 1 contains 230 fields grouped under the following headings: Taxonomy & nomenclature, Phylogeny, Australian population status, Conservation status, Legal status, Distribution, Morphology, Habitat, Food, Behaviour, Breeding, Mobility and Climate metrics. It is envisaged that the dataset will be updated periodically with new data for existing fields and the addition of new fields. The dataset has already had, and will continue to have applications in Australian and international ornithology, especially those that require standard information for a large number of taxa. PMID:26594379

  11. Scale-dependent habitat use in three species of prairie wetland birds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Naugle, D.E.; Higgins, K.F.; Nusser, S.M.; Johnson, W.C.

    1999-01-01

    We evaluated the influence of scale on habitat use for three wetland-obligate bird species with divergent life history characteristics and possible scale-dependent criteria for nesting and foraging in South Dakota, USA. A stratified, two-stage cluster sample was used to randomly select survey wetlands within strata defined by region, wetland density, and wetland surface area. We used 18-m (0.1 ha) fixed radius circular-plots to survey birds in 412 semipermanent wetlands during the summers of 1995 and 1996. Variation in habitat use by pied-billed grebes (Podilymbus podiceps) and yellow-headed blackbirds (Xanthocephalus xanthocephalus), two sedentary species that rarely exploit resources outside the vicinity of nest wetlands, was explained solely by within-patch variation. Yellow-headed blackbirds were a cosmopolitan species that commonly nested in small wetlands, whereas pied-billed grebes were an area-sensitive species that used larger wetlands regardless of landscape pattern. Area requirements for black terns (Chlidonias niger), a vagile species that typically forages up to 4 km away from the nest wetland, fluctuated in response to landscape structure. Black tern area requirements were small (6.5 ha) in heterogeneous landscapes compared to those in homogeneous landscapes (15.4-32.6 ha). Low wetland density landscapes composed of small wetlands, where few nesting wetlands occurred and potential food sources were spread over large distances, were not widely used by black terns. Landscape-level measurements related to black tern occurrence extended past relationships between wetlands into the surrounding matrix. Black terns were more likely to occur in landscapes where grasslands had not been tilled for agricultural production. Our findings represent empirical evidence that characteristics of entire landscapes, rather than individual patches, must be quantified to assess habitat suitability for wide-ranging species that use resources over large areas.

  12. Widespread correlations between climatic niche evolution and species diversification in birds.

    PubMed

    Cooney, Christopher R; Seddon, Nathalie; Tobias, Joseph A

    2016-07-01

    The adaptability of species' climatic niches can influence the dynamics of colonization and gene flow across climatic gradients, potentially increasing the likelihood of speciation or reducing extinction in the face of environmental change. However, previous comparative studies have tested these ideas using geographically, taxonomically and ecologically restricted samples, yielding mixed results, and thus the processes linking climatic niche evolution with diversification remain poorly understood. Focusing on birds, the largest and most widespread class of terrestrial vertebrates, we test whether variation in species diversification among clades is correlated with rates of climatic niche evolution and the extent to which these patterns are modified by underlying gradients in biogeography and species' ecology. We quantified climatic niches, latitudinal distribution and ecological traits for 7657 (˜75%) bird species based on geographical range polygons and then used Bayesian phylogenetic analyses to test whether niche evolution was related to species richness and rates of diversification across genus- and family-level clades. We found that the rate of climatic niche evolution has a positive linear relationship with both species richness and diversification rate at two different taxonomic levels (genus and family). Furthermore, this positive association between labile climatic niches and diversification was detected regardless of variation in clade latitude or key ecological traits. Our findings suggest either that rapid adaptation to unoccupied areas of climatic niche space promotes avian diversification, or that diversification promotes adaptation. Either way, we propose that climatic niche evolution is a fundamental process regulating the link between climate and biodiversity at global scales, irrespective of the geographical and ecological context of speciation and extinction. PMID:27064436

  13. Widespread correlations between climatic niche evolution and species diversification in birds.

    PubMed

    Cooney, Christopher R; Seddon, Nathalie; Tobias, Joseph A

    2016-07-01

    The adaptability of species' climatic niches can influence the dynamics of colonization and gene flow across climatic gradients, potentially increasing the likelihood of speciation or reducing extinction in the face of environmental change. However, previous comparative studies have tested these ideas using geographically, taxonomically and ecologically restricted samples, yielding mixed results, and thus the processes linking climatic niche evolution with diversification remain poorly understood. Focusing on birds, the largest and most widespread class of terrestrial vertebrates, we test whether variation in species diversification among clades is correlated with rates of climatic niche evolution and the extent to which these patterns are modified by underlying gradients in biogeography and species' ecology. We quantified climatic niches, latitudinal distribution and ecological traits for 7657 (˜75%) bird species based on geographical range polygons and then used Bayesian phylogenetic analyses to test whether niche evolution was related to species richness and rates of diversification across genus- and family-level clades. We found that the rate of climatic niche evolution has a positive linear relationship with both species richness and diversification rate at two different taxonomic levels (genus and family). Furthermore, this positive association between labile climatic niches and diversification was detected regardless of variation in clade latitude or key ecological traits. Our findings suggest either that rapid adaptation to unoccupied areas of climatic niche space promotes avian diversification, or that diversification promotes adaptation. Either way, we propose that climatic niche evolution is a fundamental process regulating the link between climate and biodiversity at global scales, irrespective of the geographical and ecological context of speciation and extinction.

  14. Habitat availability is a more plausible explanation than insecticide acute toxicity for U.S. grassland bird species declines.

    PubMed

    Hill, Jason M; Egan, J Franklin; Stauffer, Glenn E; Diefenbach, Duane R

    2014-01-01

    Grassland bird species have experienced substantial declines in North America. These declines have been largely attributed to habitat loss and degradation, especially from agricultural practices and intensification (the habitat-availability hypothesis). A recent analysis of North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) "grassland breeding" bird trends reported the surprising conclusion that insecticide acute toxicity was a better correlate of grassland bird declines in North America from 1980-2003 (the insecticide-acute-toxicity hypothesis) than was habitat loss through agricultural intensification. In this paper we reached the opposite conclusion. We used an alternative statistical approach with additional habitat covariates to analyze the same grassland bird trends over the same time frame. Grassland bird trends were positively associated with increases in area of Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) lands and cropland used as pasture, whereas the effect of insecticide acute toxicity on bird trends was uncertain. Our models suggested that acute insecticide risk potentially has a detrimental effect on grassland bird trends, but models representing the habitat-availability hypothesis were 1.3-21.0 times better supported than models representing the insecticide-acute-toxicity hypothesis. Based on point estimates of effect sizes, CRP area and agricultural intensification had approximately 3.6 and 1.6 times more effect on grassland bird trends than lethal insecticide risk, respectively. Our findings suggest that preserving remaining grasslands is crucial to conserving grassland bird populations. The amount of grassland that has been lost in North America since 1980 is well documented, continuing, and staggering whereas insecticide use greatly declined prior to the 1990s. Grassland birds will likely benefit from the de-intensification of agricultural practices and the interspersion of pastures, Conservation Reserve Program lands, rangelands and other grassland habitats into

  15. Habitat Availability Is a More Plausible Explanation than Insecticide Acute Toxicity for U.S. Grassland Bird Species Declines

    PubMed Central

    Hill, Jason M.; Egan, J. Franklin; Stauffer, Glenn E.; Diefenbach, Duane R.

    2014-01-01

    Grassland bird species have experienced substantial declines in North America. These declines have been largely attributed to habitat loss and degradation, especially from agricultural practices and intensification (the habitat-availability hypothesis). A recent analysis of North American Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) “grassland breeding” bird trends reported the surprising conclusion that insecticide acute toxicity was a better correlate of grassland bird declines in North America from 1980–2003 (the insecticide-acute-toxicity hypothesis) than was habitat loss through agricultural intensification. In this paper we reached the opposite conclusion. We used an alternative statistical approach with additional habitat covariates to analyze the same grassland bird trends over the same time frame. Grassland bird trends were positively associated with increases in area of Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) lands and cropland used as pasture, whereas the effect of insecticide acute toxicity on bird trends was uncertain. Our models suggested that acute insecticide risk potentially has a detrimental effect on grassland bird trends, but models representing the habitat-availability hypothesis were 1.3–21.0 times better supported than models representing the insecticide-acute-toxicity hypothesis. Based on point estimates of effect sizes, CRP area and agricultural intensification had approximately 3.6 and 1.6 times more effect on grassland bird trends than lethal insecticide risk, respectively. Our findings suggest that preserving remaining grasslands is crucial to conserving grassland bird populations. The amount of grassland that has been lost in North America since 1980 is well documented, continuing, and staggering whereas insecticide use greatly declined prior to the 1990s. Grassland birds will likely benefit from the de-intensification of agricultural practices and the interspersion of pastures, Conservation Reserve Program lands, rangelands and other grassland

  16. Fibroblasts From Longer-Lived Species of Primates, Rodents, Bats, Carnivores, and Birds Resist Protein Damage

    PubMed Central

    Pickering, Andrew M.; Lehr, Marcus; Kohler, William J.; Han, Melissa L.

    2015-01-01

    Species differ greatly in their rates of aging. Among mammalian species life span ranges from 2 to over 60 years. Here, we test the hypothesis that skin-derived fibroblasts from long-lived species of animals differ from those of short-lived animals in their defenses against protein damage. In parallel studies of rodents, nonhuman primates, birds, and species from the Laurasiatheria superorder (bats, carnivores, shrews, and ungulates), we find associations between species longevity and resistance of proteins to oxidative stress after exposure to H2O2 or paraquat. In addition, baseline levels of protein carbonyl appear to be higher in cells from shorter-lived mammals compared with longer-lived mammals. Thus, resistance to protein oxidation is associated with species maximal life span in independent clades of mammals, suggesting that this cellular property may be required for evolution of longevity. Evaluation of the properties of primary fibroblast cell lines can provide insights into the factors that regulate the pace of aging across species of mammals. PMID:25070662

  17. Visualization of species pairwise associations: a case study of surrogacy in bird assemblages

    PubMed Central

    Lane, Peter W; Lindenmayer, David B; Barton, Philip S; Blanchard, Wade; Westgate, Martin J

    2014-01-01

    Quantifying and visualizing species associations are important to many areas of ecology and conservation biology. Species networks are one way to analyze species associations, with a growing number of applications such as food webs, nesting webs, plant–animal mutualisms, and interlinked extinctions. We present a new method for assessing and visualizing patterns of co-occurrence of species. The method depicts interactions and associations in an analogous way with existing network diagrams for studying pollination and trophic interactions, but adds the assessment of sign, strength, and direction of the associations. This provides a distinct advantage over existing methods of quantifying and visualizing co-occurrence. We demonstrate the utility of our new approach by showing differences in associations among woodland bird species found in different habitats and by illustrating the way these can be interpreted in terms of underlying ecological mechanisms. Our new method is computationally feasible for large assemblages and provides readily interpretable effects with standard errors. It has wide applications for quantifying species associations within ecological communities, examining questions about particular species that occur with others, and how their associations can determine the structure and composition of communities. PMID:25473480

  18. Fibroblasts From Longer-Lived Species of Primates, Rodents, Bats, Carnivores, and Birds Resist Protein Damage.

    PubMed

    Pickering, Andrew M; Lehr, Marcus; Kohler, William J; Han, Melissa L; Miller, Richard A

    2015-07-01

    Species differ greatly in their rates of aging. Among mammalian species life span ranges from 2 to over 60 years. Here, we test the hypothesis that skin-derived fibroblasts from long-lived species of animals differ from those of short-lived animals in their defenses against protein damage. In parallel studies of rodents, nonhuman primates, birds, and species from the Laurasiatheria superorder (bats, carnivores, shrews, and ungulates), we find associations between species longevity and resistance of proteins to oxidative stress after exposure to H(2)O(2) or paraquat. In addition, baseline levels of protein carbonyl appear to be higher in cells from shorter-lived mammals compared with longer-lived mammals. Thus, resistance to protein oxidation is associated with species maximal life span in independent clades of mammals, suggesting that this cellular property may be required for evolution of longevity. Evaluation of the properties of primary fibroblast cell lines can provide insights into the factors that regulate the pace of aging across species of mammals.

  19. The relative importance of climate and vegetation properties on patterns of North American breeding bird species richness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goetz, Scott J.; Sun, Mindy; Zolkos, Scott; Hansen, Andy; Dubayah, Ralph

    2014-03-01

    Recent advances in remote sensing and ecological modeling warrant a timely and robust investigation of the ecological variables that underlie large-scale patterns of breeding bird species richness, particularly in the context of intensifying land use and climate change. Our objective was to address this need using an array of bioclimatic and remotely sensed data sets representing vegetation properties and structure, and other aspects of the physical environment. We first build models of bird species richness across breeding bird survey (BBS) routes, and then spatially predict richness across the coterminous US at moderately high spatial resolution (1 km). Predictor variables were derived from various sources and maps of species richness were generated for four groups (guilds) of birds with different breeding habitat affiliation (forest, grassland, open woodland, scrub/shrub), as well as all guilds combined. Predictions of forest bird distributions were strong (R2 = 0.85), followed by grassland (0.76), scrub/shrub (0.63) and open woodland (0.60) species. Vegetation properties were generally the strongest determinants of species richness, whereas bioclimatic and lidar-derived vertical structure metrics were of variable importance and dependent upon the guild type. Environmental variables (climate and the physical environment) were also frequently selected predictors, but canopy structure variables were not as important as expected based on more local to regional scale studies. Relatively sparse sampling of canopy structure metrics from the satellite lidar sensor may have reduced their importance relative to other predictor variables across the study domain. We discuss these results in the context of the ecological drivers of species richness patterns, the spatial scale of bird diversity analyses, and the potential of next generation space-borne lidar systems relevant to vegetation and ecosystem studies. This study strengthens current understanding of bird species

  20. Ecological adaptation and species recognition drives vocal evolution in neotropical suboscine birds.

    PubMed

    Seddon, Nathalie

    2005-01-01

    Given that evolutionary divergence in mating signals leads to reproductive isolation in numerous animal taxa, understanding what drives signal divergence is fundamental to our understanding of speciation. Mating signals are thought to diverge via several processes, including (1) as a by-product of morphological adaptation, (2) through direct adaptation to the signaling environment, or (3) to facilitate species recognition. According to the first two hypotheses, birdsongs diversify in different foraging niches and habitats as a product of selection for optimal morphology and efficient sound transmission, respectively. According to the third hypothesis, they diversify as a result of selection against maladaptive hybridization. In this study I test all three hypotheses by examining the influence of morphology, acoustic environment, and the presence of closely related congeners on song structure in 163 species of antbird (Thamnophilidae). Unlike oscine passerines, these Neotropical suboscines make ideal subjects because they develop their songs without learning. In other words, patterns of vocal divergence are not complicated by cultural evolution. In support of the morphological adaptation hypothesis, body mass correlates with the acoustic frequency of songs, and bill size with temporal patterning. These relationships were robust, even when controlling for phylogenetic inertia using independent contrasts, suggesting that there has been correlated evolution between morphological and acoustic traits. The results also support the acoustic adaptation hypothesis: birds which habitually sing in the understory and canopy produce higher-pitched songs than those that sing in the midstory, suggesting that song structure is related to the sound transmission properties of different habitat strata. Finally, the songs of sympatric pairs of closely related species are more divergent than those of allopatric pairs, as predicted by the species recognition hypothesis. To my knowledge

  1. Ecological adaptation and species recognition drives vocal evolution in neotropical suboscine birds.

    PubMed

    Seddon, Nathalie

    2005-01-01

    Given that evolutionary divergence in mating signals leads to reproductive isolation in numerous animal taxa, understanding what drives signal divergence is fundamental to our understanding of speciation. Mating signals are thought to diverge via several processes, including (1) as a by-product of morphological adaptation, (2) through direct adaptation to the signaling environment, or (3) to facilitate species recognition. According to the first two hypotheses, birdsongs diversify in different foraging niches and habitats as a product of selection for optimal morphology and efficient sound transmission, respectively. According to the third hypothesis, they diversify as a result of selection against maladaptive hybridization. In this study I test all three hypotheses by examining the influence of morphology, acoustic environment, and the presence of closely related congeners on song structure in 163 species of antbird (Thamnophilidae). Unlike oscine passerines, these Neotropical suboscines make ideal subjects because they develop their songs without learning. In other words, patterns of vocal divergence are not complicated by cultural evolution. In support of the morphological adaptation hypothesis, body mass correlates with the acoustic frequency of songs, and bill size with temporal patterning. These relationships were robust, even when controlling for phylogenetic inertia using independent contrasts, suggesting that there has been correlated evolution between morphological and acoustic traits. The results also support the acoustic adaptation hypothesis: birds which habitually sing in the understory and canopy produce higher-pitched songs than those that sing in the midstory, suggesting that song structure is related to the sound transmission properties of different habitat strata. Finally, the songs of sympatric pairs of closely related species are more divergent than those of allopatric pairs, as predicted by the species recognition hypothesis. To my knowledge

  2. Population genetics of Cryptosporidium meleagridis in humans and birds: evidence for cross-species transmission.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yuanfei; Yang, Wenli; Cama, Vitaliano; Wang, Lin; Cabrera, Lilia; Ortega, Ynes; Bern, Caryn; Feng, Yaoyu; Gilman, Robert; Xiao, Lihua

    2014-07-01

    Population genetic studies have been used to understand the transmission of pathogens in humans and animals, especially the role of zoonotic infections and evolution and dispersal of virulent subtypes. In this study, we analysed the genetic diversity and population structure of Cryptosporidium meleagridis, the only known Cryptosporidium species that infects both avian and mammalian hosts and is responsible for approximately 10% of human cryptosporidiosis in some areas. A total of 62 C. meleagridis specimens from children, AIDS patients, and birds in Lima, Peru were characterised by sequence analysis of the ssrRNA gene and five minisatellite, microsatellite and polymorphic markers in chromosome 6, including the 60 kDa glycoprotein (gp60), 47 kDa glycoprotein (CP47), a serine repeat antigen (MSC6-5), retinitis pigmentosa GTPase regulator (RPGR) and thrombospondin protein 8 (TSP8). The multilocus sequence analysis identified concurrent infections with Cryptosporidium hominis in four AIDS patients and three children. Unique subtypes of C. meleagridis ranged from eight at the gp60 locus (gene diversity -Hd=0.651), three at the RPGR (Hd=0.556), three at the MSC6-5 locus (Hd=0.242), two at TSP8 (Hd=0.198), to one at CP47 (monomorphic), much lower than that of C. hominis in the same area. Intragenic linkage disequilibrium was strong and complete at all gene loci. Intergenic linkage disequilibrium was highly significant (P<0.001) for all pairs of polymorphic loci. Two major groups of subtypes were seen, with most subtypes belonging to group 1. Within group 1, there was no clear population segregation, and two of the 14 multilocus subtypes of C. meleagridis were found in both AIDS patients and birds. We believe that these results provide the first evidence of a clonal population structure of C. meleagridis and the likely occurrence of cross-species transmission of C. meleagridis between birds and humans.

  3. Habitat and landscape correlates of presence, density, and species richness of birds wintering in forest fragments in Ohio

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Doherty, P.F.; Grubb, T.C.

    2000-01-01

    We investigated the distribution of wintering woodland bird species in 47 very small, isolated, woodland fragments (0.54-6.01 ha) within an agricultural landscape in north-central Ohio. Our objectives were to determine correlations between temporal, habitat, and landscape variables and avian presence, density, and species richness within the smallest woodlots occupied by such species. Our results suggest that even common species are sensitive to variation in habitat, landscape, and season. Woodlot area explained the most variation in presence, density, and species richness. Shrub cover was also an important predictor variable for presence of the smallest resident birds. Shrub cover might function as both a refuge from predators and as a windbreak, reducing thermal costs in a flat, open landscape. Landscape factors related to isolation and connectedness were also correlated with species presence and density. The species composition of the community changed through the winter, as did the density of individual species, suggesting that the winter season may play an important role in determining the distributions of bird populations across woodlots. The models presented here for Ohio birds in this specific landscape may have biological inference for other species in similar landscapes.

  4. Power to detect trends in abundance of secretive marsh birds: effects of species traits and sampling effort

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Steidl, Robert J.; Conway, Courtney J.; Litt, Andrea R.

    2013-01-01

    Standardized protocols for surveying secretive marsh birds have been implemented across North America, but the efficacy of surveys to detect population trends has not been evaluated. We used survey data collected from populations of marsh birds across North America and simulations to explore how characteristics of bird populations (proportion of survey stations occupied, abundance at occupied stations, and detection probability) and aspects of sampling effort (numbers of survey routes, stations/route, and surveys/station/year) affect statistical power to detect trends in abundance of marsh bird populations. In general, the proportion of survey stations along a route occupied by a species had a greater relative effect on power to detect trends than did the number of birds detected per survey at occupied stations. Uncertainty introduced by imperfect detection during surveys reduced power to detect trends considerably, but across the range of detection probabilities for most species of marsh birds, variation in detection probability had only a minor influence on power. For species that occupy a relatively high proportion of survey stations (0.20), have relatively high abundances at occupied stations (2.0 birds/station), and have high detection probability (0.50), ≥40 routes with 10 survey stations per route surveyed 3 times per year would provide an 80% chance of detecting a 3% annual decrease in abundance after 20 years of surveys. Under the same assumptions but for species that are less common, ≥100 routes would be needed to achieve the same power. Our results can help inform the design of programs to monitor trends in abundance of marsh bird populations, especially with regards to the amount of sampling effort necessary to meet programmatic goals.

  5. The Numerical Competency of Two Bird Species (Corvus splendens and Acridotheres tristis)

    PubMed Central

    Rahman, Nor Amira Abdul; Fadzly, Nik; Dzakwan, Najibah Mohd; Zulkifli, Nur Hazwani

    2014-01-01

    We conducted a series of experiments to test the numerical competency of two species of birds, Corvus splendens (House Crow) and Acridotheres tristis (Common Myna). Both species were allowed to choose from seven different groups of mealworms with varying proportions. We considered the birds to have made a correct choice when it selected the food group with the highest number of mealworms. Our overall results indicated that the Common Myna is able to count numbers (161 successful choices out of 247 trials) better than House Crows (133 successful choices out of 241 trials). We suspect that House Crows do not rely on a numerical sense when selecting food. Although House Crows mostly chose the cup with more mealworms (from seven food item proportions), only one proportion was chosen at rate above random chance. The Common Myna, however, were slow performers at the beginning but became increasingly more capable of numerical sense during the remainder of the experiment (four out of seven food proportion groups were chosen at a rate above random chance). PMID:25210590

  6. Radiocesium in migratory bird species in northern Ireland following the Chernobyl accident

    SciTech Connect

    Pearce, J.

    1995-06-01

    Radioactive fallout arising form the nuclear reactor accident at Chernobyl on 26 April 1986 reached Northern Ireland in early May and was deposited in rain. However, the subsequent contamination of food supplies in Northern Ireland were well below national and international levels at which any action would be considered necessary and presented no risks to health. In addition to the direct contamination of food supplies with radionuclides in the form of fallout following the Chernobyl incident another potential source of radioactive contamination entering the human food chain was through the arrival of migratory species of game birds. Each autumn and winter many thousands of birds migrate to Northern Ireland from Northern and Eastern Europe and some of these could have been contaminated as a result of being directly affected by the fallout from Chernobyl. The purpose of this work was to examine the extend of radionuclide contamination in such species and a number of samples were obtained for analyses during the autumn/winter periods in 1986/87 and 1987/88. The results obtained are outlined below. 5 refs., 3 tabs.

  7. A species assemblage approach to comparative phylogeography of birds in southern Australia

    PubMed Central

    Dolman, Gaynor; Joseph, Leo

    2012-01-01

    We present a novel approach to investigating the divergence history of biomes and their component species using single-locus data prior to investing in multilocus data. We use coalescent-based hierarchical approximate Bayesian computation (HABC) methods (MsBayes) to estimate the number and timing of discrete divergences across a putative barrier and to assign species to their appropriate period of co-divergence. We then apply a coalescent-based full Bayesian model of divergence (IMa) to suites of species shown to have simultaneously diverged. The full Bayesian model results in reduced credibility intervals around divergence times and allows other parameters associated with divergence to be summarized across species assemblages. We apply this approach to 10 bird species that are wholly or patchily discontinuous in semi-arid habitats between Australia's southwest (SW) and southeast (SE) mesic zones. There was substantial support for up to three discrete periods of divergence. HABC indicates that two species wholly restricted to more mesic habitats diverged earliest, between 594,382 and 3,417,699 years ago, three species from semi-arid habitats diverged between 0 and 1,508,049 years ago, and four diverged more recently, between 0 and 396,843 years ago. Eight species were assigned to three periods of co-divergence with confidence. For full Bayesian analyses, we accounted for uncertainty in the two remaining species by analyzing all possible suites of species. Estimates of divergence times from full Bayesian divergence models ranged between 429,105 and 2,006,355; 67,172 and 663,837; and 24,607 and 171,085 for the earliest, middle, and most recent periods of co-divergence, respectively. This single-locus approach uses the power of multitaxa coalescent analyses as an efficient means of generating a foundation for further, targeted research using multilocus and genomic tools applied to an understudied biome. PMID:22423329

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

    PubMed

    dos Anjos, Luiz

    2004-06-01

    Bird communities were studied in two types of fragmented habitat of Atlantic forest in the State of Paraná, southern Brazil; one consisted of forest fragments that were created as a result of human activities (forest remnants), the other consisted of a set of naturally occurring forest fragments (forest patches). Using quantitative data obtained by the point counts method in 3 forest patches and 3 forest remnants during one year, species richness and relative abundance were compared in those habitats, considering species groups according to their general feeding habits. Insectivores, omnivores, and frugivores presented similar general tendencies in both habitats (decrease of species number with decreasing size and increasing isolation of forest fragment). However, these tendencies were different, when considering the relative abundance data: the trunk insectivores presented the highest value in the smallest patch while the lowest relative abundance was in the smallest remnant. In the naturally fragmented landscape, time permitted that the loss of some species of trunk insectivores be compensated for the increase in abundance of other species. In contrast, the remnants essentially represented newly formed islands that are not yet at equilibrium and where future species losses would make them similar to the patches.

  9. Conservation action based on threatened species capture taxonomic and phylogenetic richness in breeding and wintering populations of Central Asian birds.

    PubMed

    Schweizer, Manuel; Ayé, Raffael; Kashkarov, Roman; Roth, Tobias

    2014-01-01

    Although phylogenetic diversity has been suggested to be relevant from a conservation point of view, its role is still limited in applied nature conservation. Recently, the practice of investing conservation resources based on threatened species was identified as a reason for the slow integration of phylogenetic diversity in nature conservation planning. One of the main arguments is based on the observation that threatened species are not evenly distributed over the phylogenetic tree. However this argument seems to dismiss the fact that conservation action is a spatially explicit process, and even if threatened species are not evenly distributed over the phylogenetic tree, the occurrence of threatened species could still indicate areas with above average phylogenetic diversity and consequently could protect phylogenetic diversity. Here we aim to study the selection of important bird areas in Central Asia, which were nominated largely based on the presence of threatened bird species. We show that although threatened species occurring in Central Asia do not capture phylogenetically more distinct species than expected by chance, the current spatially explicit conservation approach of selecting important bird areas covers above average taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity of breeding and wintering birds. We conclude that the spatially explicit processes of conservation actions need to be considered in the current discussion of whether new prioritization methods are needed to complement conservation action based on threatened species.

  10. Populations of migratory bird species that did not show a phenological response to climate change are declining.

    PubMed

    Møller, Anders Pape; Rubolini, Diego; Lehikoinen, Esa

    2008-10-21

    Recent rapid climatic changes are associated with dramatic changes in phenology of plants and animals, with optimal timing of reproduction advancing considerably in the northern hemisphere. However, some species may not have advanced their timing of breeding sufficiently to continue reproducing optimally relative to the occurrence of peak food availability, thus becoming mismatched compared with their food sources. The degree of mismatch may differ among species, and species with greater mismatch may be characterized by declining populations. Here we relate changes in spring migration timing by 100 European bird species since 1960, considered as an index of the phenological response of bird species to recent climate change, to their population trends. Species that declined in the period 1990-2000 did not advance their spring migration, whereas those with stable or increasing populations advanced their migration considerably. On the other hand, population trends during 1970-1990 were predicted by breeding habitat type, northernmost breeding latitude, and winter range (with species of agricultural habitat, breeding at northern latitudes, and wintering in Africa showing an unfavorable conservation status), but not by change in migration timing. The association between population trend in 1990-2000 and change in migration phenology was not confounded by any of the previously identified predictors of population trends in birds, or by similarity in phenotype among taxa due to common descent. Our findings imply that ecological factors affecting population trends can change over time and suggest that ongoing climatic changes will increasingly threaten vulnerable migratory bird species, augmenting their extinction risk.

  11. Populations of migratory bird species that did not show a phenological response to climate change are declining.

    PubMed

    Møller, Anders Pape; Rubolini, Diego; Lehikoinen, Esa

    2008-10-21

    Recent rapid climatic changes are associated with dramatic changes in phenology of plants and animals, with optimal timing of reproduction advancing considerably in the northern hemisphere. However, some species may not have advanced their timing of breeding sufficiently to continue reproducing optimally relative to the occurrence of peak food availability, thus becoming mismatched compared with their food sources. The degree of mismatch may differ among species, and species with greater mismatch may be characterized by declining populations. Here we relate changes in spring migration timing by 100 European bird species since 1960, considered as an index of the phenological response of bird species to recent climate change, to their population trends. Species that declined in the period 1990-2000 did not advance their spring migration, whereas those with stable or increasing populations advanced their migration considerably. On the other hand, population trends during 1970-1990 were predicted by breeding habitat type, northernmost breeding latitude, and winter range (with species of agricultural habitat, breeding at northern latitudes, and wintering in Africa showing an unfavorable conservation status), but not by change in migration timing. The association between population trend in 1990-2000 and change in migration phenology was not confounded by any of the previously identified predictors of population trends in birds, or by similarity in phenotype among taxa due to common descent. Our findings imply that ecological factors affecting population trends can change over time and suggest that ongoing climatic changes will increasingly threaten vulnerable migratory bird species, augmenting their extinction risk. PMID:18849475

  12. Conservation Action Based on Threatened Species Capture Taxonomic and Phylogenetic Richness in Breeding and Wintering Populations of Central Asian Birds

    PubMed Central

    Schweizer, Manuel; Ayé, Raffael; Kashkarov, Roman; Roth, Tobias

    2014-01-01

    Although phylogenetic diversity has been suggested to be relevant from a conservation point of view, its role is still limited in applied nature conservation. Recently, the practice of investing conservation resources based on threatened species was identified as a reason for the slow integration of phylogenetic diversity in nature conservation planning. One of the main arguments is based on the observation that threatened species are not evenly distributed over the phylogenetic tree. However this argument seems to dismiss the fact that conservation action is a spatially explicit process, and even if threatened species are not evenly distributed over the phylogenetic tree, the occurrence of threatened species could still indicate areas with above average phylogenetic diversity and consequently could protect phylogenetic diversity. Here we aim to study the selection of important bird areas in Central Asia, which were nominated largely based on the presence of threatened bird species. We show that although threatened species occurring in Central Asia do not capture phylogenetically more distinct species than expected by chance, the current spatially explicit conservation approach of selecting important bird areas covers above average taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity of breeding and wintering birds. We conclude that the spatially explicit processes of conservation actions need to be considered in the current discussion of whether new prioritization methods are needed to complement conservation action based on threatened species. PMID:25337861

  13. Conservation action based on threatened species capture taxonomic and phylogenetic richness in breeding and wintering populations of Central Asian birds.

    PubMed

    Schweizer, Manuel; Ayé, Raffael; Kashkarov, Roman; Roth, Tobias

    2014-01-01

    Although phylogenetic diversity has been suggested to be relevant from a conservation point of view, its role is still limited in applied nature conservation. Recently, the practice of investing conservation resources based on threatened species was identified as a reason for the slow integration of phylogenetic diversity in nature conservation planning. One of the main arguments is based on the observation that threatened species are not evenly distributed over the phylogenetic tree. However this argument seems to dismiss the fact that conservation action is a spatially explicit process, and even if threatened species are not evenly distributed over the phylogenetic tree, the occurrence of threatened species could still indicate areas with above average phylogenetic diversity and consequently could protect phylogenetic diversity. Here we aim to study the selection of important bird areas in Central Asia, which were nominated largely based on the presence of threatened bird species. We show that although threatened species occurring in Central Asia do not capture phylogenetically more distinct species than expected by chance, the current spatially explicit conservation approach of selecting important bird areas covers above average taxonomic and phylogenetic diversity of breeding and wintering birds. We conclude that the spatially explicit processes of conservation actions need to be considered in the current discussion of whether new prioritization methods are needed to complement conservation action based on threatened species. PMID:25337861

  14. Temporal Variation in Population Size of European Bird Species: Effects of Latitude and Marginality of Distribution

    PubMed Central

    Cuervo, José J.; Møller, Anders P.

    2013-01-01

    In the Northern Hemisphere, global warming has been shown to affect animal populations in different ways, with southern populations in general suffering more from increased temperatures than northern populations of the same species. However, southern populations are also often marginal populations relative to the entire breeding range, and marginality may also have negative effects on populations. To disentangle the effects of latitude (possibly due to global warming) and marginality on temporal variation in population size, we investigated European breeding bird species across a latitudinal gradient. Population size estimates were regressed on years, and from these regressions we obtained the slope (a proxy for population trend) and the standard error of the estimate (SEE) (a proxy for population fluctuations). The possible relationships between marginality or latitude on one hand and slopes or SEE on the other were tested among populations within species. Potentially confounding factors such as census method, sampling effort, density-dependence, habitat fragmentation and number of sampling years were controlled statistically. Population latitude was positively related to regression slopes independent of marginality, with more positive slopes (i.e., trends) in northern than in southern populations. The degree of marginality was positively related to SEE independent of latitude, with marginal populations showing larger SEE (i.e., fluctuations) than central ones. Regression slopes were also significantly related to our estimate of density-dependence and SEE was significantly affected by the census method. These results are consistent with a scenario in which southern and northern populations of European bird species are negatively affected by marginality, with southern populations benefitting less from global warming than northern populations, thus potentially making southern populations more vulnerable to extinction. PMID:24147048

  15. Temporal variation in population size of European bird species: effects of latitude and marginality of distribution.

    PubMed

    Cuervo, José J; Møller, Anders P

    2013-01-01

    In the Northern Hemisphere, global warming has been shown to affect animal populations in different ways, with southern populations in general suffering more from increased temperatures than northern populations of the same species. However, southern populations are also often marginal populations relative to the entire breeding range, and marginality may also have negative effects on populations. To disentangle the effects of latitude (possibly due to global warming) and marginality on temporal variation in population size, we investigated European breeding bird species across a latitudinal gradient. Population size estimates were regressed on years, and from these regressions we obtained the slope (a proxy for population trend) and the standard error of the estimate (SEE) (a proxy for population fluctuations). The possible relationships between marginality or latitude on one hand and slopes or SEE on the other were tested among populations within species. Potentially confounding factors such as census method, sampling effort, density-dependence, habitat fragmentation and number of sampling years were controlled statistically. Population latitude was positively related to regression slopes independent of marginality, with more positive slopes (i.e., trends) in northern than in southern populations. The degree of marginality was positively related to SEE independent of latitude, with marginal populations showing larger SEE (i.e., fluctuations) than central ones. Regression slopes were also significantly related to our estimate of density-dependence and SEE was significantly affected by the census method. These results are consistent with a scenario in which southern and northern populations of European bird species are negatively affected by marginality, with southern populations benefitting less from global warming than northern populations, thus potentially making southern populations more vulnerable to extinction.

  16. Response of bird species densities to habitat structure and fire history along a Midwestern open-forest gradient

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Grundel, R.; Pavlovic, N.B.

    2007-01-01

    Oak savannas were historically common but are currently rare in the Midwestern United States. We assessed possible associations of bird species with savannas and other threatened habitats in the region by relating fire frequency and vegetation characteristics to seasonal densities of 72 bird species distributed across an open-forest gradient in northwestern Indiana. About one-third of the species did not exhibit statistically significant relationships with any combination of seven vegetation characteristics that included vegetation cover in five vertical strata, dead tree density, and tree height. For 40% of the remaining species, models best predicting species density incorporated tree density. Therefore, management based solely on manipulating tree density may not be an adequate strategy for managing bird populations along this open-forest gradient. Few species exhibited sharp peaks in predicted density under habitat conditions expected in restored savannas, suggesting that few savanna specialists occur among Midwestern bird species. When fire frequency, measured over fifteen years, was added to vegetation characteristics as a predictor of species density, it was incorporated into models for about one-quarter of species, suggesting that fire may modify habitat characteristics in ways that are important for birds but not captured by the structural habitat variables measured. Among those species, similar numbers had peaks in predicted density at low, intermediate, or high fire frequency. For species suggested by previous studies to have a preference for oak savannas along the open-forest gradient, estimated density was maximized at an average fire return interval of about one fire every three years. ?? The Cooper Ornithological Society 2007.

  17. Can Establishment Success Be Determined through Demographic Parameters? A Case Study on Five Introduced Bird Species

    PubMed Central

    Sanz-Aguilar, Ana; Anadón, José D.; Edelaar, Pim; Carrete, Martina; Tella, José Luis

    2014-01-01

    The dominant criterion to determine when an introduced species is established relies on the maintenance of a self-sustaining population in the area of introduction, i.e. on the viability of the population from a demographic perspective. There is however a paucity of demographic studies on introduced species, and establishment success is thus generally determined by expert opinion without undertaking population viability analyses (PVAs). By means of an intensive five year capture-recapture monitoring program (involving >12,000 marked individuals) we studied the demography of five introduced passerine bird species in southern Spain which are established and have undergone a fast expansion over the last decades. We obtained useful estimates of demographic parameters (survival and reproduction) for one colonial species (Ploceus melanocephalus), confirming the long-term viability of its local population through PVAs. However, extremely low recapture rates prevented the estimation of survival parameters and population growth rates for widely distributed species with low local densities (Estrilda troglodytes and Amandava amandava) but also for highly abundant yet non-colonial species (Estrilda astrild and Euplectes afer). Therefore, determining the establishment success of introduced passerine species by demographic criteria alone may often be troublesome even when devoting much effort to field-work. Alternative quantitative methodologies such as the analysis of spatio-temporal species distributions complemented with expert opinion deserve thus their role in the assessment of establishment success of introduced species when estimates of demographic parameters are difficult to obtain, as is generally the case for non-colonial, highly mobile passerines. PMID:25333743

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

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

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

  19. Does mixed-species flocking influence how birds respond to a gradient of land-use intensity?

    PubMed

    Mammides, Christos; Chen, Jin; Goodale, Uromi Manage; Kotagama, Sarath Wimalabandara; Sidhu, Swati; Goodale, Eben

    2015-07-22

    Conservation biology is increasingly concerned with preserving interactions among species such as mutualisms in landscapes facing anthropogenic change. We investigated how one kind of mutualism, mixed-species bird flocks, influences the way in which birds respond to different habitat types of varying land-use intensity. We use data from a well-replicated, large-scale study in Sri Lanka and the Western Ghats of India, in which flocks were observed inside forest reserves, in 'buffer zones' of degraded forest or timber plantations, and in areas of intensive agriculture. We find flocks affected the responses of birds in three ways: (i) species with high propensity to flock were more sensitive to land use; (ii) different flock types, dominated by different flock leaders, varied in their sensitivity to land use and because following species have distinct preferences for leaders, this can have a cascading effect on followers' habitat selection; and (iii) those forest-interior species that remain outside of forests were found more inside flocks than would be expected by chance, as they may use flocks more in suboptimal habitat. We conclude that designing policies to protect flocks and their leading species may be an effective way to conserve multiple bird species in mixed forest and agricultural landscapes. PMID:26156772

  20. Does mixed-species flocking influence how birds respond to a gradient of land-use intensity?

    PubMed Central

    Mammides, Christos; Chen, Jin; Goodale, Uromi Manage; Kotagama, Sarath Wimalabandara; Sidhu, Swati; Goodale, Eben

    2015-01-01

    Conservation biology is increasingly concerned with preserving interactions among species such as mutualisms in landscapes facing anthropogenic change. We investigated how one kind of mutualism, mixed-species bird flocks, influences the way in which birds respond to different habitat types of varying land-use intensity. We use data from a well-replicated, large-scale study in Sri Lanka and the Western Ghats of India, in which flocks were observed inside forest reserves, in ‘buffer zones' of degraded forest or timber plantations, and in areas of intensive agriculture. We find flocks affected the responses of birds in three ways: (i) species with high propensity to flock were more sensitive to land use; (ii) different flock types, dominated by different flock leaders, varied in their sensitivity to land use and because following species have distinct preferences for leaders, this can have a cascading effect on followers' habitat selection; and (iii) those forest-interior species that remain outside of forests were found more inside flocks than would be expected by chance, as they may use flocks more in suboptimal habitat. We conclude that designing policies to protect flocks and their leading species may be an effective way to conserve multiple bird species in mixed forest and agricultural landscapes. PMID:26156772

  1. Does mixed-species flocking influence how birds respond to a gradient of land-use intensity?

    PubMed

    Mammides, Christos; Chen, Jin; Goodale, Uromi Manage; Kotagama, Sarath Wimalabandara; Sidhu, Swati; Goodale, Eben

    2015-07-22

    Conservation biology is increasingly concerned with preserving interactions among species such as mutualisms in landscapes facing anthropogenic change. We investigated how one kind of mutualism, mixed-species bird flocks, influences the way in which birds respond to different habitat types of varying land-use intensity. We use data from a well-replicated, large-scale study in Sri Lanka and the Western Ghats of India, in which flocks were observed inside forest reserves, in 'buffer zones' of degraded forest or timber plantations, and in areas of intensive agriculture. We find flocks affected the responses of birds in three ways: (i) species with high propensity to flock were more sensitive to land use; (ii) different flock types, dominated by different flock leaders, varied in their sensitivity to land use and because following species have distinct preferences for leaders, this can have a cascading effect on followers' habitat selection; and (iii) those forest-interior species that remain outside of forests were found more inside flocks than would be expected by chance, as they may use flocks more in suboptimal habitat. We conclude that designing policies to protect flocks and their leading species may be an effective way to conserve multiple bird species in mixed forest and agricultural landscapes.

  2. Ecological risk assessments for protected migratory birds and marine species at Midway Atoll

    SciTech Connect

    Scatolini, S.; Hope, B.; Lees, D.

    1995-12-31

    In June 1997, the US Navy plans to close its Naval Air Facility on Sand Island and transfer the atoll to the US Fish and Wildlife Service for use as a National Wildlife Refuge. Midway provides breeding and feeding habitat for migratory seabirds, terrestrial and marine mammals, sea turtles and other reptiles, and a variety of reef fishes and invertebrates. As part of the base closure and transfer process, 36 sites of potential environmental concern were identified on Sand and Eastern islands. These sites include landfills and uncontrolled disposal areas, hazardous materials storage areas, abandoned transformers, sewer outfalls, and other potential hazardous waste sites. Potential contaminants include pesticides, PAHs, PCBs, and heavy metals. A screening ecological risk assessment was performed at each site with a goal of determining whether contaminants could pose any current or future risks to protected migratory bird or marine mammal wildlife species. Specific exposure pathways investigated were dermal and inhalation routes for ground-nesting and burrowing seabirds; incidental soil ingestion for shore birds; consumption for monk seals and sea turtles. Exposure analysis involved sediment and soil chemistry, marine invertebrate tissue chemistry, bioassays (bioavailability), and food web modeling. Effects analysis involved benthic infauna community analysis, acute and chronic invertebrate sediment bioassays, and extensive literature reviews. Risk characterization used both toxicity quotient methods and weight-of-evidence analysis. Because work by other investigators suggests that birds and perhaps marine wildlife acquire significant contaminant loads while feeding away from the atoll, on-atoll risk investigations had to consider whether atoll sites made significant marginal contributions to existing contaminant loads, particularly with respect to PCBs.

  3. Observations on the biology of Afrotropical Hesperiidae (Lepidoptera). Part 9. Hesperiinae incertae sedis: Zingiberales feeders, genera of unknown biology and an overview of the Hesperiinae incertae sedis.

    PubMed

    Cock, Matthew J W; Congdon, T Colin E; Collins, Steve C

    2016-01-01

    The Afrotropical genera that have been recorded to feed on Zingiberales are documented. Partial life histories are presented for Erionota torus Evans (a South-East Asian species established in Mauritius), Semalea arela (Mabille), S. pulvina (Plötz), Xanthodisca vibius (Hewitson), X. rega (Mabille), Hypoleucis ophiusa (Hewitson), Caenides dacena (Hewitson), Osmodes adon (Mabille), Gretna cylinda (Hewitson) and Moltena fiara (Butler). Additional notes from the literature are provided on the genera Leona and Rhabdomantis. Notes on natural enemies of E. torus and M. fiara are included. We find that the Zingiberaceae and Costaceae feeding genera, Semalea, Xanthodiscus, Hypoleucis and Caenides (part) are united by a C-shaped raised rim to the prothoracic spiracle of the pupa. The pupa of Osmodes adon indicates this genus may have no close affinities to other Afrotropical genera for which the life history is known. The pupa of G. cylinda is unlike any other that we have documented and may reflect that this is the only species which we have found to be formed on the open leaf under surface rather than in a shelter. The early stages of M. fiara indicate affinities with Zophopetes and related genera. The paper concludes with a brief comparative discussion of the early stages of the Afrotropical Hesperiinae incertae sedis as a whole. There appear to be useful characters to group species by the ova and pupae but less so by the caterpillars. Based on pupae alone, the Hesperiinae incertae sedis might be divided into nine groups. PMID:27395548

  4. The Afrotropical genera of Psychodini: Redefinition of the tribe, first Afrotropical record of Perithreticus Vaillant, 1973 and description of Soeliella gen. nov. (Diptera: Psychodidae: Psychodinae).

    PubMed

    Kvifte, Gunnar Mikalsen

    2015-07-15

    Psychodini is redefined based on morphological characters and newly recognized homologies in the male genitalia. It is hypothesised that the ground-plan aedeagus of Psychodini consists of a symmetrical bipartite aedeagus flanked by paired, symmetrical parameres; which in many lineages have become asymmetrical via the differentiation of phallomeres and parameres and/or via reduction of one paramere. The Afrotropical genera of Psychodini are reviewed and a key for their identification is provided. Perithreticus Vaillant, 1973 is recorded from Tanzania based on the new species Perithreticus anderseni sp. nov. The genus is redefined, characterised by an elongate symmetrical aedeagus with paired subtriangular parameres, and a broad M-shaped epiproct with a concave anterior margin. Soeliella gen. nov. is described to include Soeliella platypenis sp. nov.; characterised by the presence of paired subtriangular parameres and the distiphallic elements broadly fused into a spatulate plate. Rhipidopsychoda Vaillant, 1991 is raised from synonymy based on novel character interpretations. Rhipidopsychoda boettgeri (Wagner, 1979) comb. nov. is redescribed and a key to the world species is presented. The species Psychoda bilobata Quate, 1957 and Psychoda trilobata Quate, 1957, Psychoda morogorica Wagner & Andersen, 2007 and Philosepedon triangularis Eaton, 1913 are of dubious generic placement and need revision.

  5. Tritrophic interactions at a community level: effects of host plant species quality on bird predation of caterpillars.

    PubMed

    Singer, Michael S; Farkas, Timothy E; Skorik, Christian M; Mooney, Kailen A

    2012-03-01

    Effects of plant traits on herbivore-carnivore interactions are well documented in component communities but are not well understood at the level of large, complex communities. We report on a 2-year field experiment testing mechanisms by which variation in food quality among eight temperate forest tree species alters avian suppression of an assemblage of dietary generalist caterpillars. Plant quality and bird effects varied dramatically among tree species; high-quality plants yielded herbivores of 50% greater mass than those on low-quality plants, and bird effects ranged from near 0% to 97% reductions in caterpillar density. We also find evidence for two mechanisms linking host plant quality to bird effects. If caterpillar density was statistically controlled for, birds had relatively strong effects on the herbivores of low-quality plants, as predicted by the slow-growth/high-mortality hypothesis. At the same time, caterpillar density increased with plant quality, and bird effects were density dependent. Consequently, the net effect of birds was strongest on the herbivores of high-quality plants, a dynamic we call the high-performance/high-mortality hypothesis. Host plant quality thus changes highly generalized herbivore-carnivore interactions by two complementary but opposing mechanisms. These results highlight the interrelatedness of plant-herbivore and herbivore-carnivore interactions and thus the importance of a tritrophic perspective.

  6. Evaluation of autonomous recording units for detecting 3 species of secretive marsh birds

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sidie-Slettehahl, Anna M.; Jensen, Kent C.; Johnson, Rex R.; Arnold, Todd W.; Austin, Jane; Stafford, Joshua D.

    2015-01-01

    Population status and habitat use of yellow rails (Coturnicops noveboracensis), Nelson's sparrows (Ammodramus nelsoni), and Le Conte's sparrows (A. leconteii) are poorly known, so standardized surveys of these species are needed to inform conservation planning and management. A protocol for monitoring secretive marsh birds exists; however, these species regularly call at night and may be missed during early morning surveys. We tested the effectiveness of autonomous recording units (hereafter, recording units) to survey these species by analyzing recorded vocalizations using bioacoustics software. We deployed 22 recording units at 54 sites in northern Minnesota and eastern North Dakota, USA, and conducted traditional broadcast surveys during May–June, 2010 and 2011. We compared detection probabilities between recording units and standard monitoring protocols using robust-design occupancy models. On average, recording units detected 0.59 (SE = 0.11) fewer Le Conte's sparrows, 0.76 (SE = 0.15) fewer Nelson's sparrows, and 1.01 (SE = 0.14) fewer yellow rails per survey than were detected using the standard protocol. Detection probabilities using the standard protocol averaged 0.95 (yellow rail; 95% CI = 0.86–0.98), 0.93 (Le Conte's sparrow; 95% CI = 0.78–0.98), and 0.89 (Nelson's sparrow; 95% CI = 0.56–0.98), but averaged 0.71 (yellow rail; 95% CI = 0.56–0.83), 0.61 (Le Conte's sparrow; 95% CI = 0.42–0.78), and 0.51 (Nelson's sparrow; 95% CI = 0.19–0.82) using recording units. Reduced detection by recording units was likely due to the ability of human listeners to identify birds calling at greater distances. Recording units may be effective for surveying nocturnal secretive marsh birds if investigators correct for differential detectability. Reduced detectability may be outweighed by the increased spatial and temporal coverage feasible with recording units.

  7. Global evolutionary isolation measures can capture key local conservation species in Nearctic and Neotropical bird communities

    PubMed Central

    Redding, David W.; Mooers, Arne O.; Şekercioğlu, Çağan H.; Collen, Ben

    2015-01-01

    Understanding how to prioritize among the most deserving imperilled species has been a focus of biodiversity science for the past three decades. Though global metrics that integrate evolutionary history and likelihood of loss have been successfully implemented, conservation is typically carried out at sub-global scales on communities of species rather than among members of complete taxonomic assemblages. Whether and how global measures map to a local scale has received little scrutiny. At a local scale, conservation-relevant assemblages of species are likely to be made up of relatively few species spread across a large phylogenetic tree, and as a consequence there are potentially relatively large amounts of evolutionary history at stake. We ask to what extent global metrics of evolutionary history are useful for conservation priority setting at the community level by evaluating the extent to which three global measures of evolutionary isolation (evolutionary distinctiveness (ED), average pairwise distance (APD) and the pendant edge or unique phylogenetic diversity (PD) contribution) capture community-level phylogenetic and trait diversity for a large sample of Neotropical and Nearctic bird communities. We find that prioritizing the most ED species globally safeguards more than twice the total PD of local communities on average, but that this does not translate into increased local trait diversity. By contrast, global APD is strongly related to the APD of those same species at the community level, and prioritizing these species also safeguards local PD and trait diversity. The next step for biologists is to understand the variation in the concordance of global and local level scores and what this means for conservation priorities: we need more directed research on the use of different measures of evolutionary isolation to determine which might best capture desirable aspects of biodiversity. PMID:25561674

  8. Global evolutionary isolation measures can capture key local conservation species in Nearctic and Neotropical bird communities.

    PubMed

    Redding, David W; Mooers, Arne O; Şekercioğlu, Çağan H; Collen, Ben

    2015-02-19

    Understanding how to prioritize among the most deserving imperilled species has been a focus of biodiversity science for the past three decades. Though global metrics that integrate evolutionary history and likelihood of loss have been successfully implemented, conservation is typically carried out at sub-global scales on communities of species rather than among members of complete taxonomic assemblages. Whether and how global measures map to a local scale has received little scrutiny. At a local scale, conservation-relevant assemblages of species are likely to be made up of relatively few species spread across a large phylogenetic tree, and as a consequence there are potentially relatively large amounts of evolutionary history at stake. We ask to what extent global metrics of evolutionary history are useful for conservation priority setting at the community level by evaluating the extent to which three global measures of evolutionary isolation (evolutionary distinctiveness (ED), average pairwise distance (APD) and the pendant edge or unique phylogenetic diversity (PD) contribution) capture community-level phylogenetic and trait diversity for a large sample of Neotropical and Nearctic bird communities. We find that prioritizing the most ED species globally safeguards more than twice the total PD of local communities on average, but that this does not translate into increased local trait diversity. By contrast, global APD is strongly related to the APD of those same species at the community level, and prioritizing these species also safeguards local PD and trait diversity. The next step for biologists is to understand the variation in the concordance of global and local level scores and what this means for conservation priorities: we need more directed research on the use of different measures of evolutionary isolation to determine which might best capture desirable aspects of biodiversity. PMID:25561674

  9. Global evolutionary isolation measures can capture key local conservation species in Nearctic and Neotropical bird communities.

    PubMed

    Redding, David W; Mooers, Arne O; Şekercioğlu, Çağan H; Collen, Ben

    2015-02-19

    Understanding how to prioritize among the most deserving imperilled species has been a focus of biodiversity science for the past three decades. Though global metrics that integrate evolutionary history and likelihood of loss have been successfully implemented, conservation is typically carried out at sub-global scales on communities of species rather than among members of complete taxonomic assemblages. Whether and how global measures map to a local scale has received little scrutiny. At a local scale, conservation-relevant assemblages of species are likely to be made up of relatively few species spread across a large phylogenetic tree, and as a consequence there are potentially relatively large amounts of evolutionary history at stake. We ask to what extent global metrics of evolutionary history are useful for conservation priority setting at the community level by evaluating the extent to which three global measures of evolutionary isolation (evolutionary distinctiveness (ED), average pairwise distance (APD) and the pendant edge or unique phylogenetic diversity (PD) contribution) capture community-level phylogenetic and trait diversity for a large sample of Neotropical and Nearctic bird communities. We find that prioritizing the most ED species globally safeguards more than twice the total PD of local communities on average, but that this does not translate into increased local trait diversity. By contrast, global APD is strongly related to the APD of those same species at the community level, and prioritizing these species also safeguards local PD and trait diversity. The next step for biologists is to understand the variation in the concordance of global and local level scores and what this means for conservation priorities: we need more directed research on the use of different measures of evolutionary isolation to determine which might best capture desirable aspects of biodiversity.

  10. Molecular and morphological divergence in a pair of bird species and their ectoparasites.

    PubMed

    Whiteman, Noah K; Dosanjh, Vishal S; Palma, Ricardo L; Hull, Joshua M; Kimball, Rebecca T; Sánchez, Pablo; Sarasola, José Hernán; Parker, Patricia G

    2009-12-01

    In an evolutionary context, parasites tend to be morphologically conservative relative to their hosts. However, the rate of neutral molecular evolution across many parasite lineages is faster than in their hosts. Although this relationship is apparent at the macroevolutionary scale, insight into the processes underpinning it may be gained through investigations at the microevolutionary scale. Birds and their ectoparasitic lice have served as important natural experiments in co-evolution. Here, we compared mitochondrial and morphological divergence in 2 recently diverged avian host lineages and their parasites. Gálapagos hawks (Buteo galapagoensis) are phenotypically divergent from their closest mainland relatives, the Swainson's hawk (Buteo swainsoni). Both species are host to a feather louse species of Craspedorrhynchus (Insecta: Phthiraptera: Ischnocera, Philopteridae). We sequenced the 5′ end of the mitochondrial gene cytochrome oxidase c subunit I (COI) from a set of hawks and lice. Although this fragment allowed unambiguous identification of host and parasite lineages on the islands and the mainland, only a single variable site was present in the 2 hosts, but 2 major Craspedorrhynchus clades divergent by ~10% were recovered that sorted perfectly with host species. We found significant population genetic structure within the Galápagos Craspedorrhynchus lineage. While the host species are highly differentiated phenotypically, the 2 Craspedorrhynchus louse lineages are phenotypically overlapping, although subtle but significant morphological differences exist.

  11. Plasma and whole brain cholinesterase activities in three wild bird species in Mosul, IRAQ: In vitro inhibition by insecticides

    PubMed Central

    Alias, Ashraf S.; Al-Zubaidy, Muna H.I.; Mousa, Yaareb J.; Mohammad, Fouad K.

    2011-01-01

    Plasma and brain cholinesterase activities were determined in three wild bird species to assess their exposure to organophosphate and carbamate insecticides which are used in agriculture and public health. In the present study, we used an electrometric method for measurement of cholinesterase activities in the plasma and whole brain of three indigenous wild birds commonly found in northern Iraq. The birds used were apparently healthy adults of both sexes (8 birds/species, comprising 3–5 from each sex) of quail (Coturnix coturnix), collard dove (Streptopelia decaocto) and rock dove (Columba livia gaddi), which were captured in Mosul, Iraq. The mean respective cholinesterase activities (Δ pH/30 minutes) in the plasma and whole brain of the birds were as follows: quail (0.96 and 0.29), collard dove (0.97and 0.82) and rock dove (1.44 and 1.42). We examined the potential susceptibility of the plasma or whole brain cholinesterases to inhibition by selected insecticides. The technique of in vitro cholinesterase inhibition for 10 minutes by the organophosphate insecticides dichlorvos, malathion and monocrotophos (0.5 and 1.0 µM) and the carbamate insecticide carbaryl (5 and10 µM) in the enzyme reaction mixtures showed significant inhibition of plasma and whole brain cholinesterase activities to various extents. The data further support and add to the reported cholinesterase activities determined electrometrically in wild birds in northern Iraq. The plasma and whole brain cholinesterases of the birds are highly susceptible to inhibition by organophosphate and carbamate insecticides as determined by the described electrometric method, and the results further suggest the usefulness of the method in biomonitoring wild bird cholinesterases. PMID:22058655

  12. 50 CFR 21.44 - Depredation order for designated species of depredating birds in California.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... to agricultural or other interests, the Commissioner of Agriculture may, without a permit, kill or... the Commissioner to kill such migratory birds, and the estimated number of such birds killed...

  13. 50 CFR 21.44 - Depredation order for designated species of depredating birds in California.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... to agricultural or other interests, the Commissioner of Agriculture may, without a permit, kill or... the Commissioner to kill such migratory birds, and the estimated number of such birds killed...

  14. 50 CFR 21.44 - Depredation order for designated species of depredating birds in California.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... to agricultural or other interests, the Commissioner of Agriculture may, without a permit, kill or... the Commissioner to kill such migratory birds, and the estimated number of such birds killed...

  15. 50 CFR 21.44 - Depredation order for designated species of depredating birds in California.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... to agricultural or other interests, the Commissioner of Agriculture may, without a permit, kill or... the Commissioner to kill such migratory birds, and the estimated number of such birds killed...

  16. Marsh birds and the North American Breeding Bird Survey: judging the value of a landscape level survey for habitat specialist species with low detection rates

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sauer, J.R.

    1999-01-01

    The North American Breeding Bird Survey was started in 1966, and provides information on population change for >400 species of birds. it covers the continental United States, Canada, and Alaska, and is conducted once each year, in June, by volunteer observers. A 39.4 kIn roadside survey route is driven starting 30 min before sunrise, and a 3 min point count is conducted at each of 50 stops spaced every 0.8 kIn. Existing analyses of the data are internet-based (http://www.mbr-pwrc.usgs.govlbbslbbs.html), and include maps of relative abundance, estimates of population change including trends (%/yr), composite annual indices (pattern in time), and maps of population trend (pattern in space). At least 36 species of marsh birds are encountered on the BBS, and the survey provides estimates with greatly varying levels of efficiency for the species. It is often difficult to understand how well the BBS surveys a species. Often, efficiency is judged by estimating trend and its variance for a species, then by calculating power and needed samples to detect a prespecified trend over some time period (e.g., a 2%/yr trend over 31 yr). Unfortunately, this approach is not always valid, as estimated trends and variances can be of little use if the population is poorly sampled. Lurking concerns with BBS data include (1) incomplete coverage of species range; (2) undersampling of habitats; and (3) low and variable visibility of birds during point counts. It is difficult to evaluate these concerns, because known populations do not exist for comparison with counts, and detection rates are time-consuming and costly to estimate. I evaluated the efficiency of the BBS for selected rails (Rallidae) and snipes (Scolopacidae), presenting estimates of population trend over 1966-1996 (T), power to detect 2%/yr trend over 31 yr, needed samples to achieve power of 0.75 with alpha= 0.1, number of survey routes with data for the species (N), average abundance on survey routes (RA), and maps of

  17. Breeding Atlantic Puffins, Fratercula arctica, and other birds species of Coburg Island, Nunavut

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Robards, M.; Gilchrist, H.G.; Allard, K.

    2000-01-01

    Coburg Island and neighbouring waters were recently designated a Canadian National Wildlife Area. The large seabird colony at Cambridge Point has been previously described, and is dominated by Thick-billed Murres (160 000 pairs). We found that a small offshore island, named Princess Charlotte Monument, also supported breeding populations of seven marine bird species; three of which did not breed at the main colony (i.e., Northern Fulmar, Common Eider, and Atlantic Puffin). This is the most northern confirmed breeding site for Atlantic Puffins in Canada. Puffins at both Coburg Island and northern Greenland nest in rock crevices, apparently because permafrost in soil prevents burrow nesting. We suggest that puffin populations in the high arctic may be limited by habitat, rather than prey availability.

  18. Short-chain chlorinated paraffins in terrestrial bird species inhabiting an e-waste recycling site in South China.

    PubMed

    Luo, Xiao-Jun; Sun, Yu-Xin; Wu, Jiang-Ping; Chen, She-Jun; Mai, Bi-Xian

    2015-03-01

    Short-chain chlorinated paraffins (SCCPs) are under review by the Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants. Currently, limited data are available about SCCPs in terrestrial organisms. In the present study, SCCP concentration in the muscles of seven terrestrial bird species (n = 38) inhabiting an e-waste recycling area in South China was determined. This concentration varied from 620 to 17,000 ng/g lipid. Resident birds accumulated significantly higher SCCP concentrations than migratory birds (p < 0.01). Trophic magnification was observed for migratory bird species but not for resident, which was attributed to high heterogeneity of SCCP in e-waste area. Two different homologue group patterns were observed in avian samples. The first pattern was found in five bird species dominated by C10 and C11 congeners, while the second was found in the remains, which show rather equal abundance of homologue groups. This may be caused by two sources of SCCPs (local and e-waste) in the study area.

  19. Diffuse migratory connectivity in two species of shrubland birds: evidence from stable isotopes

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knick, Steven T.; Leu, Matthias; Rotenberry, John T.; Hanser, Steven E.; Fesenmyer, Kurt A.

    2014-01-01

    Connecting seasonal ranges of migratory birds is important for understanding the annual template of stressors that influence their populations. Brewer’s sparrows (Spizella breweri) and sagebrush sparrows (Artemisiospiza nevadensis) share similar sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) habitats for breeding but have different population trends that might be related to winter location. To link breeding and winter ranges, we created isoscapes of deuterium [stable isotope ratio (δ) of deuterium; δ2H] and nitrogen (δ15N) for each species modeled from isotope ratios measured in feathers of 264 Brewer’s and 82 sagebrush sparrows and environmental characteristics at capture locations across their breeding range. We then used feather δ2Hf and δ15Nf measured in 1,029 Brewer’s and 527 sagebrush sparrows captured on winter locations in southwestern United States to assign probable breeding ranges. Intraspecies population mixing from across the breeding range was strong for both Brewer’s and sagebrush sparrows on winter ranges. Brewer’s sparrows but not sagebrush sparrows were linked to more northerly breeding locations in the eastern part of their winter range. Winter location was not related to breeding population trends estimated from US Geological Survey Breeding Bird Survey routes for either Brewer’s or sagebrush sparrows. Primary drivers of population dynamics are likely independent for each species; Brewer’s and sagebrush sparrows captured at the same winter location did not share predicted breeding locations or population trends. The diffuse migratory connectivity displayed by Brewer’s and sagebrush sparrows measured at the coarse spatial resolution in our analysis also suggests that local environments rather than broad regional characteristics are primary drivers of annual population trends.

  20. Avian malaria in Hawaiian forest birds: Infection and population impacts across species and elevations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Samuel, Michael D.; Woodworth, Bethany L.; Atkinson, Carter T.; Hart, P. J.; LaPointe, Dennis

    2015-01-01

    Wildlife diseases can present significant threats to ecological systems and biological diversity, as well as domestic animal and human health. However, determining the dynamics of wildlife diseases and understanding the impact on host populations is a significant challenge. In Hawai‘i, there is ample circumstantial evidence that introduced avian malaria (Plasmodium relictum) has played an important role in the decline and extinction of many native forest birds. However, few studies have attempted to estimate disease transmission and mortality, survival, and individual species impacts in this distinctive ecosystem. We combined multi-state capture-recapture (longitudinal) models with cumulative age-prevalence (cross-sectional) models to evaluate these patterns in Apapane, Hawai‘i Amakihi, and Iiwi in low-, mid-, and high-elevation forests on the island of Hawai‘i based on four longitudinal studies of 3–7 years in length. We found species-specific patterns of malaria prevalence, transmission, and mortality rates that varied among elevations, likely in response to ecological factors that drive mosquito abundance. Malaria infection was highest at low elevations, moderate at mid elevations, and limited in high-elevation forests. Infection rates were highest for Iiwi and Apapane, likely contributing to the absence of these species in low-elevation forests. Adult malaria fatality rates were highest for Iiwi, intermediate for Amakihi at mid and high elevations, and lower for Apapane; low-elevation Amakihi had the lowest malaria fatality, providing strong evidence of malaria tolerance in this low-elevation population. Our study indicates that hatch-year birds may have greater malaria infection and/or fatality rates than adults. Our study also found that mosquitoes prefer feeding on Amakihi rather than Apapane, but Apapane are likely a more important reservoir for malaria transmission to mosquitoes. Our approach, based on host abundance and infection rates, may be an

  1. Classification of Tree Species in Overstorey Canopy of Subtropical Forest Using QuickBird Images

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Chinsu; Popescu, Sorin C.; Thomson, Gavin; Tsogt, Khongor; Chang, Chein-I

    2015-01-01

    This paper proposes a supervised classification scheme to identify 40 tree species (2 coniferous, 38 broadleaf) belonging to 22 families and 36 genera in high spatial resolution QuickBird multispectral images (HMS). Overall kappa coefficient (OKC) and species conditional kappa coefficients (SCKC) were used to evaluate classification performance in training samples and estimate accuracy and uncertainty in test samples. Baseline classification performance using HMS images and vegetation index (VI) images were evaluated with an OKC value of 0.58 and 0.48 respectively, but performance improved significantly (up to 0.99) when used in combination with an HMS spectral-spatial texture image (SpecTex). One of the 40 species had very high conditional kappa coefficient performance (SCKC ≥ 0.95) using 4-band HMS and 5-band VIs images, but, only five species had lower performance (0.68 ≤ SCKC ≤ 0.94) using the SpecTex images. When SpecTex images were combined with a Visible Atmospherically Resistant Index (VARI), there was a significant improvement in performance in the training samples. The same level of improvement could not be replicated in the test samples indicating that a high degree of uncertainty exists in species classification accuracy which may be due to individual tree crown density, leaf greenness (inter-canopy gaps), and noise in the background environment (intra-canopy gaps). These factors increase uncertainty in the spectral texture features and therefore represent potential problems when using pixel-based classification techniques for multi-species classification. PMID:25978466

  2. Neuroendocrine impacts of endocrine-disrupting chemicals in birds: life stage and species sensitivities.

    PubMed

    Ottinger, Mary Ann; Dean, Karen M

    2011-01-01

    Assessing potential risk associated with exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDC) has been difficult due to species specific variation in vulnerability and to both short- and long-term effects produced by EDC. In precocial birds, embryonic exposure to EDC impacts sexual differentiation of neuroendocrine systems and behavior. Often, detectable nonlethal effects of EDC diminish as the organism matures such that the chronic impact of EDC may appear relatively innocuous by the time an individual is sexually mature. In addition, studies have not addressed lifetime effects of EDC exposure on birds. Consequently, it is difficult to assess chronic effects of nonlethal exposure on the fitness of an individual and whether there is a potential risk to a wild population. Assessing behavioral and neuroendocrine consequences of exposure is complicated by individual and species variation in sensitivity as well as exposure to complex mixtures. Our studies are designed to examine effects of individual EDC administered to the embryo as well as in a multigenerational dietary study in which birds received low doses of the pesticide methoxychlor (MXC). The influence of dietary MXC exposure was also compared between Japanese quail and northern bobwhite quail. The effects of dietary exposures to 0.5, 5, or 10 ppm that are relatively environmentally low were determined. The selection of these doses was to mimic levels that might be encountered in the field and higher doses that might potentially reveal effects of exposure at relatively low exposures. These doses were also based on the regulations by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that mandate a limit 0.04 ppm MXC in drinking water, with a limit of no more than 0.05 ppm in water that children drink. Further there is a limit of 1-100 ppm for crops and other food for human and livestock consumption; bottled water has a 0.1 ppm limit for MXC content. Our data are discussed in the context of applicability of toxicological

  3. Social selection parapatry in Afrotropical sunbirds.

    PubMed

    McEntee, Jay P; Peñalba, Joshua V; Werema, Chacha; Mulungu, Elia; Mbilinyi, Maneno; Moyer, David; Hansen, Louis; Fjeldså, Jon; Bowie, Rauri C K

    2016-06-01

    The extent of range overlap of incipient and recent species depends on the type and magnitude of phenotypic divergence that separates them, and the consequences of phenotypic divergence on their interactions. Signal divergence by social selection likely initiates many speciation events, but may yield niche-conserved lineages predisposed to limit each others' ranges via ecological competition. Here, we examine this neglected aspect of social selection speciation theory in relation to the discovery of a nonecotonal species border between sunbirds. We find that Nectarinia moreaui and Nectarinia fuelleborni meet in a ∼6 km wide contact zone, as estimated by molecular cline analysis. These species exploit similar bioclimatic niches, but sing highly divergent learned songs, consistent with divergence by social selection. Cline analyses suggest that within-species stabilizing social selection on song-learning predispositions maintains species differences in song despite both hybridization and cultural transmission. We conclude that ecological competition between moreaui and fuelleborni contributes to the stabilization of the species border, but that ecological competition acts in conjunction with reproductive interference. The evolutionary maintenance of learned song differences in a hybrid zone recommend this study system for future studies on the mechanisms of learned song divergence and its role in speciation. PMID:27167078

  4. [Influenza virus epidemiology and ecology, with special reference to bird species associated with water. Literature review and observations].

    PubMed

    van Tongeren, H A; Voous, K H

    1987-12-01

    Only a limited number of A-subtypes of influenza virus so far caused disease in human subjects, pigs and horses; this occurred in more or less defined areas which occasionally showed epidemic aggravations, becoming apparent as rapidly spreading epidemics or otherwise in even the form of pandemics. However this number of antigenic subtypes was found to be fairly constant and host-specific. Earlier studies were done in domesticated fowl and birds, though particularly in water birds in recent years, and numerous subtypes were detected, only a small number of these subtypes also being found to occur in man, pigs and horses. It became increasingly apparent that particularly mallards, but also other water birds play an extremely important role in the maintenance as well as in the distribution and circulation of these orthomyxoviruses in nature. These infections in water birds were not merely caused by a single subtype but occasionally by two or more antigenically different subtypes. This could be conducive to the appearance of recombinants as a result of genetic rearrangement in the cells lining the alimentary tracts of birds. Occasionally, subtypes observed in man were also found to occur in birds, which gave rise to the question of the extent to which birds are the origin or sources of infections of human epidemics caused by these subtypes. This also holds good for the subtypes in pigs. In addition to a number of oecological and ornithological considerations, reference was also made to systematic facts and routes along which further investigations on the presence of influenza viruses in the world of birds could be taken up, particular attention being paid to migratory birds. As birds of passage pass over and find their way into isolated areas as well as human population centres, these birds play a role which is yet unknown both in the distribution and in the overwintering of influenza viruses. Conditions in which wild and domesticated (water) birds, pigs, horses and

  5. Species- and tissue-specific accumulation of Dechlorane Plus in three terrestrial passerine bird species from the Pearl River Delta, South China.

    PubMed

    Sun, Yuxin; Luo, Xiaojun; Wu, Jiangping; Mo, Ling; Chen, Shejun; Zhang, Qiang; Zou, Fasheng; Mai, Bixian

    2012-10-01

    Little data is available on the bioaccumulation of Dechlorane Plus (DP) in terrestrial organisms. Three terrestrial passerine bird species, light-vented bulbul, long-tailed shrike, and oriental magpie-robin, were collected from rural and urban sites in the Pearl River Delta to analyze for the presence of DP and its dechlorinated products in muscle and liver tissues. The relationships between trophic level and concentration and isomeric composition of DP in birds were also investigated based on stable nitrogen isotope analysis. DP levels had a wide range from 3.9 to 930 ng g(-1)lipid weight (lw) in muscle and from 7.0 to 1300 ng g(-1)lw in liver. Anti-Cl(11)-DP and syn-Cl(11)-DP, two dechlorinated products of DP, were also detected in bird samples with concentrations ranged between not detected (nd)-41 and nd-7.6 ng g(-1)lw, respectively. DP preferentially accumulated in liver rather than in muscle for all three bird species. Birds had significantly higher concentrations of DP in urban sites than in rural sites (mean, 300 vs 73 ng g(-1)lw). The fractions of anti-DP (f(anti)) were higher in birds collected in rural sites than in urban sites. Significant positive correlation between DP levels and δ(15)N values but significant negative correlation between f(anti) and δ(15)N values were found for birds in both urban and rural sites, indicating that trophic level of birds play an important role in determining DP level and isomeric profile.

  6. Three Echinostome Species from Wild Birds in the Republic of Korea

    PubMed Central

    Choe, Seongjun; Lee, Dongmin; Park, Hansol; Oh, Mihyeon; Jeon, Hyeong-Kyu; Lee, Youngsun; Na, Ki-Jeong; Kim, Youngjun; Lee, Hang

    2014-01-01

    Three echinostome species, i.e., Patagifer bilobus, Petasiger neocomense, and Saakotrema metatestis, are newly recorded in the trematode fauna of the Republic of Korea. They were recovered from 3 species of migratory birds (Platalea minor, Podiceps cristatus, and Egretta garzetta), which were donated by the Wildlife Center of Chungbuk (WCC) and the Conservation Genome Resource Bank for Korean Wildlife (CGRB). Only 1 P. bilobus specimen was recovered from the intestine of a black-faced spoonbill (P. minor), and characterized by the bilobed head crown with a deep dorsal incision and 54 collar spines. Twenty P. neocomense were recovered from the intestine of a great crested grebe (P. cristatus), and they had a well-developed head crown with 19 spines and 2 testes obliquely located at the posterior middle of the body. Total 70 S. metatestis were collected from the bursa of Fabricius of 1 little egret (E. garzetta). It is characterized by stout tegumental spines covered in the entire leaf-shaped body, posterior extension of the uterus, presence of the uroproct and a well-developed head crown with 12 pairs of collar spines on each side. By the present study, these 3 echinostome species are newly added to the trematode fauna in Korea. PMID:25352700

  7. Metal contamination in select species of birds in Nilgiris district, Tamil Nadu, India.

    PubMed

    Jayakumar, R; Muralidharan, S

    2011-08-01

    Variation in metal contamination in six species of birds, namely the Cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo), Cattle Egret (Bubulcus ibis), Little Egret (Egretta garzetta), Pond Heron (Ardeola grayii), Common Myna (Acridotheres tristis) and Jungle Babbler (Turdoides striatus) in Nilgiris district, Tamil Nadu, India. The accumulation of heavy metals differed among the species studied. On an average, Little Egret accumulated high concentrations of copper (53.31 ± 23.19 ppm) followed by Cattle Egret (16.27 ± 9.83 ppm) in liver. Of all the species, Jungle Babbler recorded the maximum concentrations (20.59 ± 9.07 ppm) in muscle. The Pond Heron recorded the maximum concentration (35.38 ± 11.14 ppm) in brain. On an average the maximum level was in the kidney of Common Myna (7.76 ± 1.80 ppm). PMID:21656294

  8. Mobbing calls signal predator category in a kin group-living bird species.

    PubMed

    Griesser, Michael

    2009-08-22

    Many prey species gather together to approach and harass their predators despite the associated risks. While mobbing, prey usually utter calls and previous experiments have demonstrated that mobbing calls can convey information about risk to conspecifics. However, the risk posed by predators also differs between predator categories. The ability to communicate predator category would be adaptive because it would allow other mobbers to adjust their risk taking. I tested this idea in Siberian jays Perisoreus infaustus, a group-living bird species, by exposing jay groups to mounts of three hawk and three owl species of varying risks. Groups immediately approached to mob the mount and uttered up to 14 different call types. Jays gave more calls when mobbing a more dangerous predator and when in the presence of kin. Five call types were predator-category-specific and jays uttered two hawk-specific and three owl-specific call types. Thus, this is one of the first studies to demonstrate that mobbing calls can simultaneously encode information about both predator category and the risk posed by a predator. Since antipredator calls of Siberian jays are known to specifically aim at reducing the risk to relatives, kin-based sociality could be an important factor in facilitating the evolution of predator-category-specific mobbing calls. PMID:19474047

  9. Preferred temperature and thermal breadth of birds wintering in peninsular Spain: the limited effect of temperature on species distribution

    PubMed Central

    Palomino, David

    2016-01-01

    Background. The availability of environmental energy, as measured by temperature, is expected to limit the abundance and distribution of endotherms wintering at temperate latitudes. A prediction of this hypothesis is that birds should attain their highest abundances in warmer areas. However, there may be a spatial mismatch between species preferred habitats and species preferred temperatures, so some species might end-up wintering in sub-optimal thermal environments. Methods. We model the influence of minimum winter temperature on the relative abundance of 106 terrestrial bird species wintering in peninsular Spain, at 10 ×10 km2 resolution, using 95%-quantile regressions. We analyze general trends across species on the shape of the response curves, the environmental preferred temperature (at which the species abundance is maximized), the mean temperature in the area of distribution and the thermal breadth (area under the abundance-temperature curve). Results. Temperature explains a low proportion of variation in abundance. The most significant effect is on limiting the maximum potential abundance of species. Considering this upper-limit response, there is a large interspecific variability on the thermal preferences and specialization of species. Overall, there is a preponderance of positive relationships between species abundance and temperature; on average, species attain their maximum abundances in areas 1.9 °C warmer than the average temperature available in peninsular Spain. The mean temperature in the area of distribution is lower than the thermal preferences of the species. Discussion. Many species prefer the warmest areas to overwinter, which suggests that temperature imposes important restrictions to birds wintering in the Iberian Peninsula. However, one third of species overwinter in locations colder than their thermal preferences, probably reflecting the interaction between habitat and thermal requirements. There is a high inter-specific variation in

  10. Preferred temperature and thermal breadth of birds wintering in peninsular Spain: the limited effect of temperature on species distribution.

    PubMed

    Carrascal, Luis M; Villén-Pérez, Sara; Palomino, David

    2016-01-01

    Background. The availability of environmental energy, as measured by temperature, is expected to limit the abundance and distribution of endotherms wintering at temperate latitudes. A prediction of this hypothesis is that birds should attain their highest abundances in warmer areas. However, there may be a spatial mismatch between species preferred habitats and species preferred temperatures, so some species might end-up wintering in sub-optimal thermal environments. Methods. We model the influence of minimum winter temperature on the relative abundance of 106 terrestrial bird species wintering in peninsular Spain, at 10 ×10 km(2) resolution, using 95%-quantile regressions. We analyze general trends across species on the shape of the response curves, the environmental preferred temperature (at which the species abundance is maximized), the mean temperature in the area of distribution and the thermal breadth (area under the abundance-temperature curve). Results. Temperature explains a low proportion of variation in abundance. The most significant effect is on limiting the maximum potential abundance of species. Considering this upper-limit response, there is a large interspecific variability on the thermal preferences and specialization of species. Overall, there is a preponderance of positive relationships between species abundance and temperature; on average, species attain their maximum abundances in areas 1.9 °C warmer than the average temperature available in peninsular Spain. The mean temperature in the area of distribution is lower than the thermal preferences of the species. Discussion. Many species prefer the warmest areas to overwinter, which suggests that temperature imposes important restrictions to birds wintering in the Iberian Peninsula. However, one third of species overwinter in locations colder than their thermal preferences, probably reflecting the interaction between habitat and thermal requirements. There is a high inter-specific variation in

  11. Unveiling the conservation biogeography of a data-deficient endangered bird species under climate change.

    PubMed

    Hu, Junhua; Liu, Yang

    2014-01-01

    It remains a challenge to identify the geographical patterns and underlying environmental associations of species with unique ecological niches and distinct behaviors. This in turn hinders our understanding of the ecology as well as effective conservation management of threatened species. The white-eared night heron (Gorsachius magnificus) is a non-migratory nocturnal bird species that has a patchy distribution in the mountainous forests of East Asia. It is currently categorized as "Endangered" on the IUCN Red List, primarily due to its restricted range and fragmented habitat. To improve our knowledge of the biogeography and conservation of this species, we modeled the geographical pattern of its suitable habitat and evaluated the potential impacts of climate change using ecological niche modeling with a maximum entropy approach implemented in Maxent. Our results indicated that the amount of suitable habitat in all of East Asia was about 130 000 km(2), which can be spatially subdivided into several mountain ranges in southern and southwestern China and northern Vietnam. The extent of suitable habitat range may shrink by more than 35% under a predicted changing climate when assuming the most pessimistic condition of dispersal, while some more suitable habitat would be available if the heron could disperse unrestrainedly. The significant future changes in habitat suitability suggested for Gorsachius magnificus urge caution in any downgrading of Red List status that may be considered. Our results also discern potentially suitable areas for future survey efforts on new populations. Overall, this study demonstrates that ecological niche modeling offers an important tool for evaluating the habitat suitability and potential impacts of climate change on an enigmatic and endangered species based on limited presence data. PMID:24404169

  12. Unveiling the conservation biogeography of a data-deficient endangered bird species under climate change.

    PubMed

    Hu, Junhua; Liu, Yang

    2014-01-01

    It remains a challenge to identify the geographical patterns and underlying environmental associations of species with unique ecological niches and distinct behaviors. This in turn hinders our understanding of the ecology as well as effective conservation management of threatened species. The white-eared night heron (Gorsachius magnificus) is a non-migratory nocturnal bird species that has a patchy distribution in the mountainous forests of East Asia. It is currently categorized as "Endangered" on the IUCN Red List, primarily due to its restricted range and fragmented habitat. To improve our knowledge of the biogeography and conservation of this species, we modeled the geographical pattern of its suitable habitat and evaluated the potential impacts of climate change using ecological niche modeling with a maximum entropy approach implemented in Maxent. Our results indicated that the amount of suitable habitat in all of East Asia was about 130 000 km(2), which can be spatially subdivided into several mountain ranges in southern and southwestern China and northern Vietnam. The extent of suitable habitat range may shrink by more than 35% under a predicted changing climate when assuming the most pessimistic condition of dispersal, while some more suitable habitat would be available if the heron could disperse unrestrainedly. The significant future changes in habitat suitability suggested for Gorsachius magnificus urge caution in any downgrading of Red List status that may be considered. Our results also discern potentially suitable areas for future survey efforts on new populations. Overall, this study demonstrates that ecological niche modeling offers an important tool for evaluating the habitat suitability and potential impacts of climate change on an enigmatic and endangered species based on limited presence data.

  13. Species richness and relative abundance of breeding birds in forests of the Mississippi Alluvial Valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nelms, C.O.; Twedt, D.J.; Smith, Winston Paul

    1993-01-01

    In 1992, the Vicksburg Field Research Station of the National Wetlands Research Center initiated research on the ecology of migratory birds within forests of the Mississippi Alluvial Valley (MAV). The MAV was historically a nearly contiguous bottomland hardwood forest, however, only remnants remain. These remnants are fragmented and often influenced by drainage projects, silviculture, agriculture, and urban development. Our objectives are to assess species richness and relative abundance, and to relate these to the size, quality, and composition of forest stands. Species richness and relative abundance were estimated for 53 randomly selected forest sites using 1 to 8 point counts per site, depending on the size of the forest fragment. However, statistical comparisons among sites will be restricted to an equal number ofpoint counts within the sites being compared. Point counts, lasting five minutes, were conducted from 11 May to 29 June 1992, foltowing Ralph, Sauer, and Droege (Point Count Standards; memo dated 9 March 1992). Vegetation was measured at the first three points on each site using a modification of the methods employed by Martin and Roper (Condor 90: 5 1-57; 1988). During 252 counts, 7 1 species were encountered, but only 62 species were encountered within a 50-m radius of point center. The mean number of species encountered within 50 m of a point, was 7.3 (s.d. = 2.7) and the mean number of individuals was 11.2 (s.d. = 4.2). The mean number of species detected at any distance was 9.6 (s.d, = 2.8) and the mean number of individuals was 15.6 (s.d. = 7.9). The most frequently encountered warblers in the MAV were Prothonotary Warbler and Northern Parula. Rarely encountered warblers were American Redstart and Worm-eating Warbler. The genera, Quercus, Ulmus, Carya, and Celtis were each encountered at 80 or more of the 152 points at which vegetation was sampled. Species most frequentlyencountered were: sugarberry (Celtis laevagata), water hickory (Caqa

  14. Two new and two redescribed species of Anonchotaenia (Cestoda: Paruterinidae) from South American birds.

    PubMed

    Phillips, Anna J; Georgiev, Boyko B; Waeschenbach, Andrea; Mariaux, Jean

    2014-10-01

    Morphological examination of novel specimens of paruterinid cestodes from passerine birds from Brazil and Chile and of museum specimens from Paraguay revealed two new species: Anonchotaenia prolixa sp. n. from Elaenia albiceps chilensis Hellmayr from Chile, and Anonchotaenia vaslata sp. n. from Tyrannus melancholicus (Vieillot) (type host) and Myiodynastes maculatus (Statius Muller) from Paraguay. The generic diagnosis of Anonchotaenia Conn, 1900 is amended, prompted by the presence of the armed cirrus and the elongated cirrus sac of A. prolixa. Two species were redescribed: Anonchotaenia brasiliensis Fuhrmann, 1908 from Tachyphonus coronatus (Vieillot) and Thraupis cyanoptera (Vieillot) (new host records) from Brazil, and Thraupis sayaca (Linnaeus) and Volatinia jacarina (Linnaeus) from Paraguay (new host and geographic records); and Anonchotaenia macrocephala Fuhrmann, 1908 from Tachycineta leucorrhoa (Vieillot) (new host record) from Brazil, Tachycineta meyeni (Cabanis) from Chile (new host and geographic record) and Stelgidopteryx ruficollis (Vieillot) from Paraguay (new host and geographic record). Scanning electron microscopy of A. brasiliensis and A. macrocephala revealed less microthrix variation than has been reported for other cyclophyllidean taxa. Sequence data were generated for nuclear ssr- and lsr-DNA and mitochondrial rrnL and cox1 for A. prolixa, A. brasiliensis, and A. macrocephala. Maximum likelihood and Bayesian inference analyses supported each species as distinct, but revealed cryptic diversity among A. brasiliensis specimens from different host families. New host records of A. brasiliensis and A. macrocephala prompted a formal assessment of host specificity. Anonchotaenia prolixa was found to be oioxenous (HS(S) = 0), A. vaslata and A. macrocephala were found to be metastenoxenous (HS(S) = 3.000 and 3.302, respectively), whereas A. brasiliensis was found to be euryxenous (HS(S) = 5.876). Anonchotaenia brasiliensis has been found parasitising

  15. Correlating Flight Behavior and Radar Measurements for Species Based Classification of Bird Radar Echoes for Wind Energy Site Assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Werth, S. P.; Frasier, S. J.

    2015-12-01

    Wind energy is one of the fastest-growing segments of the world energy market, offering a clean and abundant source of electricity. However, wind energy facilities can have detrimental effects on wildlife, especially birds and bats. Monitoring systems based on marine navigation radar are often used to quantify migration near potential wind sites, but the ability to reliably distinguish between bats and different varieties of birds has not been practically achieved. This classification capability would enable wind site selection that protects more vulnerable species, such as bats and raptors. Flight behavior, such as wing beat frequency, changes in speed, or changes in orientation, are known to vary by species [1]. The ability to extract these properties from radar data could ultimately enable a species based classification scheme. In this work, we analyze the relationship between radar measurements and bird flight behavior in echoes from avifauna. During the 2014 fall migration season, the UMass dual polarized weather radar was used to collect low elevation observations of migrating birds as they traversed through a fixed antenna beam. The radar was run during the night time, in clear-air conditions. Data was coherently integrated, and detections of biological targets exceeding an SNR threshold were extracted. Detections without some dominant frequency content (i.e. clear periodicity, potentially the wing beat frequency) were removed from the sample in order to isolate observations suspected to contain a single species or bird. For the remaining detections, measurements including the polarimetric products and the Doppler spectrum were extracted at each time step over the duration of the observation. The periodic and time changing nature of some of these different measurements was found to have a strong correlation with flight behavior (i.e. flapping vs. gliding behavior). Assumptions about flight behavior and orientation were corroborated through scattering

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

    PubMed

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

    2012-07-01

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

  17. Plants, birds and butterflies: short-term responses of species communities to climate warming vary by taxon and with altitude.

    PubMed

    Roth, Tobias; Plattner, Matthias; Amrhein, Valentin

    2014-01-01

    As a consequence of climate warming, species usually shift their distribution towards higher latitudes or altitudes. Yet, it is unclear how different taxonomic groups may respond to climate warming over larger altitudinal ranges. Here, we used data from the national biodiversity monitoring program of Switzerland, collected over an altitudinal range of 2500 m. Within the short period of eight years (2003-2010), we found significant shifts in communities of vascular plants, butterflies and birds. At low altitudes, communities of all species groups changed towards warm-dwelling species, corresponding to an average uphill shift of 8 m, 38 m and 42 m in plant, butterfly and bird communities, respectively. However, rates of community changes decreased with altitude in plants and butterflies, while bird communities changed towards warm-dwelling species at all altitudes. We found no decrease in community variation with respect to temperature niches of species, suggesting that climate warming has not led to more homogenous communities. The different community changes depending on altitude could not be explained by different changes of air temperatures, since during the 16 years between 1995 and 2010, summer temperatures in Switzerland rose by about 0.07°C per year at all altitudes. We discuss that land-use changes or increased disturbances may have prevented alpine plant and butterfly communities from changing towards warm-dwelling species. However, the findings are also consistent with the hypothesis that unlike birds, many alpine plant species in a warming climate could find suitable habitats within just a few metres, due to the highly varied surface of alpine landscapes. Our results may thus support the idea that for plants and butterflies and on a short temporal scale, alpine landscapes are safer places than lowlands in a warming world.

  18. A niche-based framework to assess current monitoring of European forest birds and guide indicator species' selection.

    PubMed

    Wade, Amy S I; Barov, Boris; Burfield, Ian J; Gregory, Richard D; Norris, Ken; Vorisek, Petr; Wu, Taoyang; Butler, Simon J

    2014-01-01

    Concern that European forest biodiversity is depleted and declining has provoked widespread efforts to improve management practices. To gauge the success of these actions, appropriate monitoring of forest ecosystems is paramount. Multi-species indicators are frequently used to assess the state of biodiversity and its response to implemented management, but generally applicable and objective methodologies for species' selection are lacking. Here we use a niche-based approach, underpinned by coarse quantification of species' resource use, to objectively select species for inclusion in a pan-European forest bird indicator. We identify both the minimum number of species required to deliver full resource coverage and the most sensitive species' combination, and explore the trade-off between two key characteristics, sensitivity and redundancy, associated with indicators comprising different numbers of species. We compare our indicator to an existing forest bird indicator selected on the basis of expert opinion and show it is more representative of the wider community. We also present alternative indicators for regional and forest type specific monitoring and show that species' choice can have a significant impact on the indicator and consequent projections about the state of the biodiversity it represents. Furthermore, by comparing indicator sets drawn from currently monitored species and the full forest bird community, we identify gaps in the coverage of the current monitoring scheme. We believe that adopting this niche-based framework for species' selection supports the objective development of multi-species indicators and that it has good potential to be extended to a range of habitats and taxa.

  19. Retinal Ganglion Cell Topography of Five Species of Ground-Foraging Birds

    PubMed Central

    Dolan, Tracy; Fernández-Juricic, Esteban

    2010-01-01

    Birds that forage on the ground have been studied extensively in relation to behavioral trade-offs between foraging and scanning for predators; however, we know little about the topography of their retinas, which can influence how they gather visual information. We characterized the density of retinal ganglion cells across the retina and estimated visual acuity of four Passeriformes (European starling Sturnus vulgaris, brown-headed cowbird Molothrus ater, house sparrow Passer domesticus, house finch Carpodacus mexicanus) and one Columbiforme (mourning dove Zenaida macroura) that forage on the ground. We used cresyl violet to stain retinal ganglion cells and estimated visual acuity based on cell density and eye size. All species contained a single area centralis, where cell densities were >20,000 cells/mm2. The proportion of the retina that fell in each of five cell density ranges varied between species. European starlings and house finches had the largest area of high cell density, mourning doves had the smallest. The largest proportion of the retina (>35%) of brown-headed cowbird and house sparrow was in the second-lowest cell density range. Considering the 25th percentile of highest cell densities, house finches and European starlings showed the highest cell densities and mourning doves the lowest. Estimated visual acuity increased from house finch, house sparrow, brown-headed cowbird, European starling to mourning dove, and was associated with both retinal area and cell density. Our findings suggest that these ground foragers do not have highly specialized retinas in relation to other types of foragers (e.g. tree foragers), probably because foraging on seeds and insects from the ground is not as visually demanding; however, the studied species showed variability in retinal topography that may be related to foraging techniques, eye size constraints, and size of the area centralis. PMID:20516656

  20. Molecular Identification of Birds: Performance of Distance-Based DNA Barcoding in Three Genes to Delimit Parapatric Species

    PubMed Central

    Aliabadian, Mansour; Kaboli, Mohammad; Nijman, Vincent; Vences, Miguel

    2009-01-01

    Background DNA barcoding based on the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase subunit I gene (cox1 or COI) has been successful in species identification across a wide array of taxa but in some cases failed to delimit the species boundaries of closely allied allopatric species or of hybridising sister species. Methodology/Principal Findings In this study we extend the sample size of prior studies in birds for cox1 (2776 sequences, 756 species) and target especially species that are known to occur parapatrically, and/or are known to hybridise, on a Holarctic scale. In order to obtain a larger set of taxa (altogether 2719 species), we include also DNA sequences of two other mitochondrial genes: cytochrome b (cob) (4614 sequences, 2087 species) and 16S (708 sequences, 498 species). Our results confirm the existence of a wide gap between intra- and interspecies divergences for both cox1 and cob, and indicate that distance-based DNA barcoding provides sufficient information to identify and delineate bird species in 98% of all possible pairwise comparisons. This DNA barcoding gap was not statistically influenced by the number of individuals sequenced per species. However, most of the hybridising parapatric species pairs have average divergences intermediate between intraspecific and interspecific distances for both cox1 and cob. Conclusions/Significance DNA barcoding, if used as a tool for species discovery, would thus fail to identify hybridising parapatric species pairs. However, most of them can probably still assigned to known species by character-based approaches, although development of complementary nuclear markers will be necessary to account for mitochondrial introgression in hybridising species. PMID:19127298

  1. Chewing lice (Phthiraptera) from wild birds in Senegal, with descriptions of three new species of the genera Brueelia and Philopteroides.

    PubMed

    Najer, Tomáš; Sychra, Oldřich; Literák, Ivan; Procházka, Petr; Capek, Miroslav; Koubek, Petr

    2012-03-01

    A total of 170 wild birds from Senegal, belonging to 48 species and 9 orders, were searched for lice in 2005 and 2007. Chewing lice were found on 58 birds of 18 species and 5 orders (Columbiformes, Cuculiformes, Coraciiformes, Galliformes and Passeriformes). Twenty-two species of chewing lice of 13 genera were determined. Other nine samples of chewing lice that represent a new host-parasite association were determined at generic level only, because only one sex or nymph of these lice were found. Our records represent the first louse records from passerines Camaroptera brachyura (Cisticolidae), Chalcomitra senegalensis (Nectariniidae), Corvinella corvina (Laniidae), Laniarius barbarus (Malaconotidae), Prinia erythroptera (Cisticolidae) and Turdus pelios (Turdidae). Descriptions and illustrations are given for Brueelia chalcomitrae Najer et Sychra sp. nov. ex Chalcomitra senegalensis (Nectariniidae), Brueelia priniae Najer et Sychra sp. nov. ex Prinia subflava (Cisticolidae), and Philopteroides terpsiphoni Najer et Sychra sp. nov. ex Terpsiphone viridis (Monarchidae).

  2. Identifying the world's most climate change vulnerable species: a systematic trait-based assessment of all birds, amphibians and corals.

    PubMed

    Foden, Wendy B; Butchart, Stuart H M; Stuart, Simon N; Vié, Jean-Christophe; Akçakaya, H Resit; Angulo, Ariadne; DeVantier, Lyndon M; Gutsche, Alexander; Turak, Emre; Cao, Long; Donner, Simon D; Katariya, Vineet; Bernard, Rodolphe; Holland, Robert A; Hughes, Adrian F; O'Hanlon, Susannah E; Garnett, Stephen T; Sekercioğlu, Cagan H; Mace, Georgina M

    2013-01-01

    Climate change will have far-reaching impacts on biodiversity, including increasing extinction rates. Current approaches to quantifying such impacts focus on measuring exposure to climatic change and largely ignore the biological differences between species that may significantly increase or reduce their vulnerability. To address this, we present a framework for assessing three dimensions of climate change vulnerability, namely sensitivity, exposure and adaptive capacity; this draws on species' biological traits and their modeled exposure to projected climatic changes. In the largest such assessment to date, we applied this approach to each of the world's birds, amphibians and corals (16,857 species). The resulting assessments identify the species with greatest relative vulnerability to climate change and the geographic areas in which they are concentrated, including the Amazon basin for amphibians and birds, and the central Indo-west Pacific (Coral Triangle) for corals. We found that high concentration areas for species with traits conferring highest sensitivity and lowest adaptive capacity differ from those of highly exposed species, and we identify areas where exposure-based assessments alone may over or under-estimate climate change impacts. We found that 608-851 bird (6-9%), 670-933 amphibian (11-15%), and 47-73 coral species (6-9%) are both highly climate change vulnerable and already threatened with extinction on the IUCN Red List. The remaining highly climate change vulnerable species represent new priorities for conservation. Fewer species are highly climate change vulnerable under lower IPCC SRES emissions scenarios, indicating that reducing greenhouse emissions will reduce climate change driven extinctions. Our study answers the growing call for a more biologically and ecologically inclusive approach to assessing climate change vulnerability. By facilitating independent assessment of the three dimensions of climate change vulnerability, our approach can

  3. Annotated catalogue of the Tachinidae (Insecta, Diptera) of the Afrotropical Region, with the description of seven new genera

    PubMed Central

    O’Hara, James E.; Cerretti, Pierfilippo

    2016-01-01

    Abstract The Tachinidae of the Afrotropical Region are catalogued and seven genera and eight species are newly described. There are 237 genera and 1126 species recognized, of which 101 genera and 1043 species are endemic to the region. The catalogue is based on examination of the primary literature comprising about 525 references as well as numerous name-bearing types and other specimens housed in collections. Taxa are arranged hierarchically and alphabetically under the categories of subfamily, tribe, genus, subgenus (where recognized), species, and rarely subspecies. Nomenclatural information is provided for all genus-group and species-group names, including lists of synonyms (mostly restricted to Afrotropical taxa) and name-bearing type data. Species distributions are recorded by country within the Afrotropical Region and by larger geographical divisions outside the region. Additional information is given in the form of notes, numbering about 300 in the catalogue section. Seven genera and eight species are described as new: Afrophylax Cerretti & O’Hara with type species Sturmia aureiventris Villeneuve, 1910, gen. n. (Exoristinae, Eryciini); Austrosolieria Cerretti & O’Hara with type species Austrosolieria londti Cerretti & O’Hara, gen. n. and sp. n. (South Africa) and Austrosolieria freidbergi Cerretti & O’Hara, sp. n. (Malawi) (Tachininae, Leskiini); Carceliathrix Cerretti & O’Hara with type species Phorocera crassipalpis Villeneuve, 1938, gen. n. (Exoristinae, Eryciini); Filistea Cerretti & O’Hara with type species Viviania aureofasciata Curran, 1927, gen. n. and Filistea verbekei Cerretti & O’Hara, sp. n. (Cameroon, D.R. Congo, Uganda) (Exoristinae, Blondeliini); Mesnilotrix Cerretti & O’Hara with type species Dexiotrix empiformis Mesnil, 1976, gen. n. (Dexiinae, Dexiini); Myxophryxe Cerretti & O’Hara with type species Phorocera longirostris Villeneuve, 1938, gen. n., Myxophryxe murina Cerretti & O’Hara, sp. n. (South Africa), Myxophryxe

  4. Age-related differences in the cloacal microbiota of a wild bird species

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Gastrointestinal bacteria play a central role in the health of animals. The bacteria that individuals acquire as they age may therefore have profound consequences for their future fitness. However, changes in microbial community structure with host age remain poorly understood. We characterised the cloacal bacteria assemblages of chicks and adults in a natural population of black-legged kittiwakes (Rissa tridactyla), using molecular methods. Results We show that the kittiwake cloaca hosts a diverse assemblage of bacteria. A greater number of total bacterial OTUs (operational taxonomic units) were identified in chicks than adults, and chicks appeared to host a greater number of OTUs that were only isolated from single individuals. In contrast, the number of bacteria identified per individual was higher in adults than chicks, while older chicks hosted more OTUs than younger chicks. Finally, chicks and adults shared only seven OTUs, resulting in pronounced differences in microbial assemblages. This result is surprising given that adults regurgitate food to chicks and share the same nesting environment. Conclusions Our findings suggest that chick gastrointestinal tracts are colonised by many transient species and that bacterial assemblages gradually transition to a more stable adult state. Phenotypic differences between chicks and adults may lead to these strong differences in bacterial communities. These data provide the framework for future studies targeting the causes and consequences of variation in bacterial assemblages in wild birds. PMID:23531085

  5. The Relationships between Morphological Characteristics and Foraging Behavior in Four Selected Species of Shorebirds and Water Birds Utilizing Tropical Mudflats

    PubMed Central

    Norazlimi, Nor Atiqah; Ramli, Rosli

    2015-01-01

    A study was conducted to investigate the relationship between the physical morphology of shorebirds and water birds (i.e., Lesser adjutant (Leptoptilos javanicus), Common redshank (Tringa totanus), Whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus), and Little heron (Butorides striata)) and their foraging behavior in the mudflats area of Selangor, Peninsular Malaysia, from August 2013 to July 2014 by using direct observation techniques (using binoculars and a video recorder). The actively foraging bird species were watched, and their foraging activities were recorded for at least 30 seconds for up to a maximum of five minutes. A Spearman Rank Correlation highlighted a significant relationship between bill size and foraging time (R = 0.443, p < 0.05), bill size and prey size (R = −0.052, p < 0.05), bill size and probing depth (R = 0.42, p = 0.003), and leg length and water/mud depth (R = 0.706, p < 0.005). A Kruskal-Wallis Analysis showed a significant difference between average estimates of real probing depth of the birds (mm) and species (H = 15.96, p = 0.0012). Three foraging techniques were recorded: pause-travel, visual-feeding, and tactile-hunting. Thus, morphological characteristics of bird do influence their foraging behavior and strategies used when foraging. PMID:26345324

  6. The Relationships between Morphological Characteristics and Foraging Behavior in Four Selected Species of Shorebirds and Water Birds Utilizing Tropical Mudflats.

    PubMed

    Norazlimi, Nor Atiqah; Ramli, Rosli

    2015-01-01

    A study was conducted to investigate the relationship between the physical morphology of shorebirds and water birds (i.e., Lesser adjutant (Leptoptilos javanicus), Common redshank (Tringa totanus), Whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus), and Little heron (Butorides striata)) and their foraging behavior in the mudflats area of Selangor, Peninsular Malaysia, from August 2013 to July 2014 by using direct observation techniques (using binoculars and a video recorder). The actively foraging bird species were watched, and their foraging activities were recorded for at least 30 seconds for up to a maximum of five minutes. A Spearman Rank Correlation highlighted a significant relationship between bill size and foraging time (R = 0.443, p < 0.05), bill size and prey size (R = -0.052, p < 0.05), bill size and probing depth (R = 0.42, p = 0.003), and leg length and water/mud depth (R = 0.706, p < 0.005). A Kruskal-Wallis Analysis showed a significant difference between average estimates of real probing depth of the birds (mm) and species (H = 15.96, p = 0.0012). Three foraging techniques were recorded: pause-travel, visual-feeding, and tactile-hunting. Thus, morphological characteristics of bird do influence their foraging behavior and strategies used when foraging. PMID:26345324

  7. The Relationships between Morphological Characteristics and Foraging Behavior in Four Selected Species of Shorebirds and Water Birds Utilizing Tropical Mudflats.

    PubMed

    Norazlimi, Nor Atiqah; Ramli, Rosli

    2015-01-01

    A study was conducted to investigate the relationship between the physical morphology of shorebirds and water birds (i.e., Lesser adjutant (Leptoptilos javanicus), Common redshank (Tringa totanus), Whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus), and Little heron (Butorides striata)) and their foraging behavior in the mudflats area of Selangor, Peninsular Malaysia, from August 2013 to July 2014 by using direct observation techniques (using binoculars and a video recorder). The actively foraging bird species were watched, and their foraging activities were recorded for at least 30 seconds for up to a maximum of five minutes. A Spearman Rank Correlation highlighted a significant relationship between bill size and foraging time (R = 0.443, p < 0.05), bill size and prey size (R = -0.052, p < 0.05), bill size and probing depth (R = 0.42, p = 0.003), and leg length and water/mud depth (R = 0.706, p < 0.005). A Kruskal-Wallis Analysis showed a significant difference between average estimates of real probing depth of the birds (mm) and species (H = 15.96, p = 0.0012). Three foraging techniques were recorded: pause-travel, visual-feeding, and tactile-hunting. Thus, morphological characteristics of bird do influence their foraging behavior and strategies used when foraging.

  8. Identifying the World's Most Climate Change Vulnerable Species: A Systematic Trait-Based Assessment of all Birds, Amphibians and Corals

    PubMed Central

    Foden, Wendy B.; Butchart, Stuart H. M.; Stuart, Simon N.; Vié, Jean-Christophe; Akçakaya, H. Resit; Angulo, Ariadne; DeVantier, Lyndon M.; Gutsche, Alexander; Turak, Emre; Cao, Long; Donner, Simon D.; Katariya, Vineet; Bernard, Rodolphe; Holland, Robert A.; Hughes, Adrian F.; O’Hanlon, Susannah E.; Garnett, Stephen T.; Şekercioğlu, Çagan H.; Mace, Georgina M.

    2013-01-01

    Climate change will have far-reaching impacts on biodiversity, including increasing extinction rates. Current approaches to quantifying such impacts focus on measuring exposure to climatic change and largely ignore the biological differences between species that may significantly increase or reduce their vulnerability. To address this, we present a framework for assessing three dimensions of climate change vulnerability, namely sensitivity, exposure and adaptive capacity; this draws on species’ biological traits and their modeled exposure to projected climatic changes. In the largest such assessment to date, we applied this approach to each of the world’s birds, amphibians and corals (16,857 species). The resulting assessments identify the species with greatest relative vulnerability to climate change and the geographic areas in which they are concentrated, including the Amazon basin for amphibians and birds, and the central Indo-west Pacific (Coral Triangle) for corals. We found that high concentration areas for species with traits conferring highest sensitivity and lowest adaptive capacity differ from those of highly exposed species, and we identify areas where exposure-based assessments alone may over or under-estimate climate change impacts. We found that 608–851 bird (6–9%), 670–933 amphibian (11–15%), and 47–73 coral species (6–9%) are both highly climate change vulnerable and already threatened with extinction on the IUCN Red List. The remaining highly climate change vulnerable species represent new priorities for conservation. Fewer species are highly climate change vulnerable under lower IPCC SRES emissions scenarios, indicating that reducing greenhouse emissions will reduce climate change driven extinctions. Our study answers the growing call for a more biologically and ecologically inclusive approach to assessing climate change vulnerability. By facilitating independent assessment of the three dimensions of climate change vulnerability

  9. Global patterns of apparent copy number variation in birds revealed by cross-species comparative genomic hybridization.

    PubMed

    Skinner, Benjamin M; Al Mutery, Abdullah; Smith, Deborah; Völker, Martin; Hojjat, Nilofour; Raja, Sannaa; Trim, Steven; Houde, Peter; Boecklen, William J; Griffin, Darren K

    2014-04-01

    There is a growing interest in copy number variation (CNV) and the recognition of its importance in phenotype, disease, adaptation and speciation. CNV data is usually ascertained by array-CGH within-species, but similar inter-species comparisons have also been made in primates, mice and domestic mammals. Here, we conducted a broad appraisal of putative cross-species CNVs in birds, 16 species in all, using the standard array-CGH approach. Using a chicken oligonucleotide microarray, we detected 790 apparent CNVs within 135 unique regions and developed a bioinformatic tool 'CNV Analyser' for analysing and visualising cross-species data sets. We successfully addressed four hypotheses as follows: (a) Cross-species CNVs (compared to chicken) are, as suggested from preliminary evidence, smaller and fewer in number than in mammals; this 'dogma' was rejected in the light of the new evidence. (b) CNVs in birds are likely to have a functional effect through an association with genes; a large proportion of detected regions (70 %) were indeed associated with genes (suggesting functional significance), however, not necessarily more so than in mammals. (c) There are more CNVs in birds with more rearranged karyotypes; this hypothesis was rejected. Indeed, Falco species contained fewer than most with relatively standard (chicken-like) karyotypes. (d) There are more CNVs per megabase on micro-chromosomes than macrochromosomes; this hypothesis was accepted. Indeed, in species with rearranged karyotypes characterised by chromosomal fusions, the fused former microchromosomes still 'behaved' as though they were their microchromosomal ancestors. Gene ontology analysis of CNVRs revealed enrichment in immune response and antigen presentation genes and five CNVRs were perfectly correlated with the unique loss of sexual dichromatism in one Galliformes species.

  10. High Prevalence of West Nile Virus in Domestic Birds and Detection in 2 New Mosquito Species in Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Maquart, Marianne; Boyer, Sébastien; Rakotoharinome, Vincent Michel; Ravaomanana, Julie; Tantely, Michael Luciano; Heraud, Jean-Michel; Cardinale, Eric

    2016-01-01

    West Nile virus is an arthropod-borne zoonosis transmitted by a large number of mosquito species, and birds play a key role as reservoir of the virus. Its distribution is largely widespread over Africa, Asia, the Americas and Europe. Since 1978, it has frequently been reported in Madagascar. Studies described a high seroprevalence level of the virus in humans in different areas of the island and a human fatal case of WNV infection was reported in 2011. Despite these reports, the epidemiology of WNV in Madagascar, in particular, viral circulation remains unclear. To explore the transmission of WNV in two rural human populations of Madagascar, we investigated local mosquitoes and poultry for evidence of current infections, and determined seroprevalence of candidate sentinel species among the local poultry. These 2 areas are close to lakes where domestic birds, migratory wild birds and humans coexist. Serological analysis revealed WNV antibodies in domestic birds (duck, chicken, goose, turkey and guinea fowl) sampled in both districts (Antsalova 29.4% and Mitsinjo 16.7%). West Nile virus nucleic acid was detected in one chicken and in 8 pools of mosquitoes including 2 mosquito species (Aedeomyia madagascarica and Anopheles pauliani) that have not been previously described as candidate vectors for WNV. Molecular analysis of WNV isolates showed that all viruses detected were part of the lineage 2 that is mainly distributed in Africa, and were most closely matched by the previous Malagasy strains isolated in 1988. Our study showed that WNV circulates in Madagascar amongst domestic birds and mosquitoes, and highlights the utility of poultry as a surveillance tool to detect WNV transmission in a peri-domestic setting.

  11. High Prevalence of West Nile Virus in Domestic Birds and Detection in 2 New Mosquito Species in Madagascar

    PubMed Central

    Rakotoharinome, Vincent Michel; Ravaomanana, Julie; Tantely, Michael Luciano; Heraud, Jean-Michel; Cardinale, Eric

    2016-01-01

    West Nile virus is an arthropod-borne zoonosis transmitted by a large number of mosquito species, and birds play a key role as reservoir of the virus. Its distribution is largely widespread over Africa, Asia, the Americas and Europe. Since 1978, it has frequently been reported in Madagascar. Studies described a high seroprevalence level of the virus in humans in different areas of the island and a human fatal case of WNV infection was reported in 2011. Despite these reports, the epidemiology of WNV in Madagascar, in particular, viral circulation remains unclear. To explore the transmission of WNV in two rural human populations of Madagascar, we investigated local mosquitoes and poultry for evidence of current infections, and determined seroprevalence of candidate sentinel species among the local poultry. These 2 areas are close to lakes where domestic birds, migratory wild birds and humans coexist. Serological analysis revealed WNV antibodies in domestic birds (duck, chicken, goose, turkey and guinea fowl) sampled in both districts (Antsalova 29.4% and Mitsinjo 16.7%). West Nile virus nucleic acid was detected in one chicken and in 8 pools of mosquitoes including 2 mosquito species (Aedeomyia madagascarica and Anopheles pauliani) that have not been previously described as candidate vectors for WNV. Molecular analysis of WNV isolates showed that all viruses detected were part of the lineage 2 that is mainly distributed in Africa, and were most closely matched by the previous Malagasy strains isolated in 1988. Our study showed that WNV circulates in Madagascar amongst domestic birds and mosquitoes, and highlights the utility of poultry as a surveillance tool to detect WNV transmission in a peri-domestic setting. PMID:26807720

  12. Environmental factors influence both abundance and genetic diversity in a widespread bird species

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yang; Webber, Simone; Bowgen, Katharine; Schmaltz, Lucie; Bradley, Katharine; Halvarsson, Peter; Abdelgadir, Mohanad; Griesser, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Genetic diversity is one of the key evolutionary variables that correlate with population size, being of critical importance for population viability and the persistence of species. Genetic diversity can also have important ecological consequences within populations, and in turn, ecological factors may drive patterns of genetic diversity. However, the relationship between the genetic diversity of a population and how this interacts with ecological processes has so far only been investigated in a few studies. Here, we investigate the link between ecological factors, local population size, and allelic diversity, using a field study of a common bird species, the house sparrow (Passer domesticus). We studied sparrows outside the breeding season in a confined small valley dominated by dispersed farms and small-scale agriculture in southern France. Population surveys at 36 locations revealed that sparrows were more abundant in locations with high food availability. We then captured and genotyped 891 house sparrows at 10 microsatellite loci from a subset of these locations (N = 12). Population genetic analyses revealed weak genetic structure, where each locality represented a distinct substructure within the study area. We found that food availability was the main factor among others tested to influence the genetic structure between locations. These results suggest that ecological factors can have strong impacts on both population size per se and intrapopulation genetic variation even at a small scale. On a more general level, our data indicate that a patchy environment and low dispersal rate can result in fine-scale patterns of genetic diversity. Given the importance of genetic diversity for population viability, combining ecological and genetic data can help to identify factors limiting population size and determine the conservation potential of populations. PMID:24363897

  13. Environmental factors influence both abundance and genetic diversity in a widespread bird species.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yang; Webber, Simone; Bowgen, Katharine; Schmaltz, Lucie; Bradley, Katharine; Halvarsson, Peter; Abdelgadir, Mohanad; Griesser, Michael

    2013-11-01

    Genetic diversity is one of the key evolutionary variables that correlate with population size, being of critical importance for population viability and the persistence of species. Genetic diversity can also have important ecological consequences within populations, and in turn, ecological factors may drive patterns of genetic diversity. However, the relationship between the genetic diversity of a population and how this interacts with ecological processes has so far only been investigated in a few studies. Here, we investigate the link between ecological factors, local population size, and allelic diversity, using a field study of a common bird species, the house sparrow (Passer domesticus). We studied sparrows outside the breeding season in a confined small valley dominated by dispersed farms and small-scale agriculture in southern France. Population surveys at 36 locations revealed that sparrows were more abundant in locations with high food availability. We then captured and genotyped 891 house sparrows at 10 microsatellite loci from a subset of these locations (N = 12). Population genetic analyses revealed weak genetic structure, where each locality represented a distinct substructure within the study area. We found that food availability was the main factor among others tested to influence the genetic structure between locations. These results suggest that ecological factors can have strong impacts on both population size per se and intrapopulation genetic variation even at a small scale. On a more general level, our data indicate that a patchy environment and low dispersal rate can result in fine-scale patterns of genetic diversity. Given the importance of genetic diversity for population viability, combining ecological and genetic data can help to identify factors limiting population size and determine the conservation potential of populations.

  14. Population Trends of Central European Montane Birds Provide Evidence for Adverse Impacts of Climate Change on High-Altitude Species.

    PubMed

    Flousek, Jiří; Telenský, Tomáš; Hanzelka, Jan; Reif, Jiří

    2015-01-01

    Climate change is among the most important global threats to biodiversity and mountain areas are supposed to be under especially high pressure. Although recent modelling studies suggest considerable future range contractions of montane species accompanied with increased extinction risk, data allowing to test actual population consequences of the observed climate changes and identifying traits associated to their adverse impacts are very scarce. To fill this knowledge gap, we estimated long-term population trends of montane birds from 1984 to 2011 in a central European mountain range, the Giant Mountains (Krkonoše), where significant warming occurred over this period. We then related the population trends to several species' traits related to the climate change effects. We found that the species breeding in various habitats at higher altitudes had more negative trends than species breeding at lower altitudes. We also found that the species moved upwards as a response to warming climate, and these altitudinal range shifts were associated with more positive population trends at lower altitudes than at higher altitudes. Moreover, long-distance migrants declined more than residents or species migrating for shorter distances. Taken together, these results indicate that the climate change, besides other possible environmental changes, already influences populations of montane birds with particularly adverse impacts on high-altitude species such as water pipit (Anthus spinoletta). It is evident that the alpine species, predicted to undergo serious climatically induced range contractions due to warming climate in the future, already started moving along this trajectory.

  15. Population Trends of Central European Montane Birds Provide Evidence for Adverse Impacts of Climate Change on High-Altitude Species

    PubMed Central

    Flousek, Jiří; Telenský, Tomáš; Hanzelka, Jan; Reif, Jiří

    2015-01-01

    Climate change is among the most important global threats to biodiversity and mountain areas are supposed to be under especially high pressure. Although recent modelling studies suggest considerable future range contractions of montane species accompanied with increased extinction risk, data allowing to test actual population consequences of the observed climate changes and identifying traits associated to their adverse impacts are very scarce. To fill this knowledge gap, we estimated long-term population trends of montane birds from 1984 to 2011 in a central European mountain range, the Giant Mountains (Krkonoše), where significant warming occurred over this period. We then related the population trends to several species' traits related to the climate change effects. We found that the species breeding in various habitats at higher altitudes had more negative trends than species breeding at lower altitudes. We also found that the species moved upwards as a response to warming climate, and these altitudinal range shifts were associated with more positive population trends at lower altitudes than at higher altitudes. Moreover, long-distance migrants declined more than residents or species migrating for shorter distances. Taken together, these results indicate that the climate change, besides other possible environmental changes, already influences populations of montane birds with particularly adverse impacts on high-altitude species such as water pipit (Anthus spinoletta). It is evident that the alpine species, predicted to undergo serious climatically induced range contractions due to warming climate in the future, already started moving along this trajectory. PMID:26426901

  16. Pathogenicity of two recent Western Mediterranean West Nile virus isolates in a wild bird species indigenous to Southern Europe: the red-legged partridge.

    PubMed

    Sotelo, Elena; Gutierrez-Guzmán, Ana Valeria; del Amo, Javier; Llorente, Francisco; El-Harrak, Mehdi; Pérez-Ramírez, Elisa; Blanco, Juan Manuel; Höfle, Ursula; Jiménez-Clavero, Miguel Angel

    2011-01-01

    West Nile virus (WNV) is an emerging zoonotic pathogen whose geographic spread and incidence in humans, horses and birds has increased significantly in recent years. WNV has long been considered a mild pathogen causing self-limiting outbreaks. This notion has changed as WNV is causing large epidemics with a high impact on human and animal health. This has been particularly noteworthy since its introduction into North America in 1999. There, native bird species have been shown to be highly susceptible to WNV infection and disease with high mortalities. For this reason, the effect of WNV infection in North American bird species has been thoroughly studied by means of experimental inoculations in controlled trials. To a lesser extent, European wild birds have been shown to be affected clinically by WNV infection. Yet experimental studies on European wild bird species are lacking. The red-legged partridge (Alectoris rufa) is a gallinaceous bird indigenous to the Iberian Peninsula, widely distributed in South Western Europe. It plays a key role in the Mediterranean ecosystem and constitutes an economically important game species. As such it is raised intensively in outdoor facilities. In this work, red-legged partridges were experimentally infected with two recent WNV isolates from the Western Mediterranean area: Morocco/2003 and Spain/2007. All inoculated birds became viremic and showed clinical disease, with mortality rates of 70% and 30%, respectively. These results show that Western Mediterranean WNV variants can be pathogenic for some European bird species, such as the red-legged partridge. PMID:21314967

  17. Pathogenicity of two recent Western Mediterranean West Nile virus isolates in a wild bird species indigenous to Southern Europe: the red-legged partridge

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    West Nile virus (WNV) is an emerging zoonotic pathogen whose geographic spread and incidence in humans, horses and birds has increased significantly in recent years. WNV has long been considered a mild pathogen causing self-limiting outbreaks. This notion has changed as WNV is causing large epidemics with a high impact on human and animal health. This has been particularly noteworthy since its introduction into North America in 1999. There, native bird species have been shown to be highly susceptible to WNV infection and disease with high mortalities. For this reason, the effect of WNV infection in North American bird species has been thoroughly studied by means of experimental inoculations in controlled trials. To a lesser extent, European wild birds have been shown to be affected clinically by WNV infection. Yet experimental studies on European wild bird species are lacking. The red-legged partridge (Alectoris rufa) is a gallinaceous bird indigenous to the Iberian Peninsula, widely distributed in South Western Europe. It plays a key role in the Mediterranean ecosystem and constitutes an economically important game species. As such it is raised intensively in outdoor facilities. In this work, red-legged partridges were experimentally infected with two recent WNV isolates from the Western Mediterranean area: Morocco/2003 and Spain/2007. All inoculated birds became viremic and showed clinical disease, with mortality rates of 70% and 30%, respectively. These results show that Western Mediterranean WNV variants can be pathogenic for some European bird species, such as the red-legged partridge. PMID:21314967

  18. A critical look at national monitoring programs for birds and other wildlife species

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sauer, J.R.

    2003-01-01

    Concerns?about declines in numerous taxa have created agreat deal of interest in survey development. Because birds have traditionally been monitored by a variety of methods, bird surveys form natural models for development of surveys for other taxa. Here I suggest that most bird surveys are not appropriate models for survey design. Most lack important design components associated with estimation of population parameters at sample sites or with sampling over space, leading to estimates that may be biased, I discuss the limitations of national bird monitoring programs designed to monitor population size. Although these surveys are often analyzed, careful consideration must be given to factors that may bias estimates but that cannot be evaluated within the survey. Bird surveys with appropriate designs have generally been developed as part of management programs that have specific information needs. Experiences gained from bird surveys provide important information for development of surveys for other taxa, and statistical developments in estimation of population sizes from counts provide new approaches to overcoming the limitations evident in many bird surveys. Design of surveys is a collaborative effort, requiring input from biologists, statisticians, and the managers who will use the information from the surveys.

  19. Immunoglobulin detection in wild birds: Effectiveness of three secondary anti-avian IgY antibodies in direct ELISAs in 41 avian species

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Fassbinder-Orth, Carol A.; Wilcoxen, Travis E.; Tran, Tiffany; Boughton, Raoul K.; Fair, Jeanne M.; Hofmeister, Erik K.; Grindstaff, Jennifer L.; Owen, Jen C.

    2016-01-01

    4.This study indicates that the anti-passerine IgY secondary antibody can effectively be used in immunological assays to detect passerine IgY for species in most passerine families and is preferred over anti-chicken and anti-bird secondary antibodies for the majority of passerine species. This anti-passerine antibody will allow for more accurate detection and quantification of IgY in more wild bird species than was possible with previously available secondary antibodies.

  20. A revision and key to the genera of Afrotropical Mantispidae (Neuropterida, Neuroptera), with the description of a new genus.

    PubMed

    Snyman, Louwtjie P; Ohl, Michael; Mansell, Mervyn W; Scholtz, Clarke H

    2012-01-01

    The Afrotropical Mantispidae genera have previously been neglected and are poorly known. The genera are revised and redescribed. A new genus Afromantispa Snyman and Ohl is described with Afromantispa tenellacomb. n.as type species. Perlamantispa (Handschin, 1960) is synonymised with Sagittalata Handschin, 1959. The new combinations within the genus include Sagittalata austroafricacomb. n., Sagittalata bequaerticomb. n., Sagittalata dorsaliscomb. n., Sagittalata girardicomb. n., Sagittalata nubilacomb. n.,Sagittalata perlacomb. n.,Sagittalata pusillacomb. n., Sagittalata similatacomb. n., Sagittalata royicomb. n., Sagittalata tinctacomb. n. andSagittalata vasseicomb. n. An illustrated key to the genera Afromantispagen. n., Sagittalata Handschin, 1959, Mantispa Illiger, 1798, Cercomantispa Handschin, 1959, Rectinerva Handschin, 1959, Nampista Navás, 1914, and Pseudoclimaciella Handschin, 1960 is provided. The wing venation of Mantispidae is redescribed. Similarities between the genera are discussed. Subsequent studies will focus on revising the taxonomic status of species, which are not dealt with in this study. PMID:22573953

  1. Quantitative Analysis of Forest Fragmentation in the Atlantic Forest Reveals More Threatened Bird Species than the Current Red List

    PubMed Central

    Schnell, Jessica K.; Harris, Grant M.; Pimm, Stuart L.; Russell, Gareth J.

    2013-01-01

    Habitat loss and attendant fragmentation threaten the existence of many species. Conserving these species requires a straightforward and objective method that quantifies how these factors affect their survival. Therefore, we compared a variety of metrics that assess habitat fragmentation in bird ranges, using the geographical ranges of 127 forest endemic passerine birds inhabiting the Atlantic Forest of Brazil. A common, non-biological metric — cumulative area of size-ranked fragments within a species range — was misleading, as the least threatened species had the most habitat fragmentation. Instead, we recommend a modified version of metapopulation capacity. The metric links detailed spatial information on fragment sizes and spatial configuration to the birds’ abilities to occupy and disperse across large areas (100,000+ km2). In the Atlantic Forest, metapopulation capacities were largely bimodal, in that most species’ ranges had either low capacity (high risk of extinction) or high capacity (very small risk of extinction). This pattern persisted within taxonomically and ecologically homogenous groups, indicating that it is driven by fragmentation patterns and not differences in species ecology. Worryingly, we found IUCN considers some 28 of 58 species in the low metapopulation capacity cluster to not be threatened. We propose that assessing the effect of fragmentation will separate species more clearly into distinct risk categories than does a simple assessment of remaining habitat. PMID:23734248

  2. Low haemosporidian diversity and one key-host species in a bird malaria community on a mid-Atlantic island (São Miguel, Azores).

    PubMed

    Hellgren, Olof; Križanauskienė, Asta; Hasselquist, Dennis; Bensch, Staffan

    2011-10-01

    When host species colonize new areas, the parasite assemblage infecting the hosts might change, with some parasite species being lost and others newly acquired. These changes would likely lead to novel selective forces on both host and its parasites. We investigated the avian blood parasites in the passerine bird community on the mid-Atlantic island of São Miguel, Azores, a bird community originating from continental Europe. The presence of haemosporidian blood parasites belonging to the genera Haemoproteus, Plasmodium, and Leucocytozoon was assessed using polymerase chain reaction. We found two Plasmodium lineages and two Leucocytozoon lineages in 11 bird species (84% of all breeding passerine species) on the island. These lineages were unevenly distributed across bird species. The Eurasian Blackbird (Turdus merula) was the key-host species (total parasite prevalence of 57%), harboring the main proportion of parasite infections. Except for Eurasian Blackbirds, all bird species had significantly lower prevalence and parasite diversity compared to their continental populations. We propose that in evolutionary novel bird communities, single species may act as key hosts by harboring the main part of the parasite fauna from which parasites "leak" into the other species. This would create very different host-parasite associations in areas recently colonized by hosts as compared to in their source populations. PMID:22102655

  3. Bird Flu

    MedlinePlus

    Birds, just like people, get the flu. Bird flu viruses infect birds, including chickens, other poultry, and wild birds such as ducks. Most bird flu viruses can only infect other birds. However, bird flu ...

  4. Functional implications of species differences in the size and morphology of the isthmo optic nucleus (ION) in birds.

    PubMed

    Gutiérrez-Ibáñez, Cristián; Iwaniuk, Andrew N; Lisney, Thomas J; Faunes, Macarena; Marín, Gonzalo J; Wylie, Douglas R

    2012-01-01

    In birds, there is a retinofugal projection from the brain to the retina originating from the isthmo optic nucleus (ION) in the midbrain. Despite a large number of anatomical, physiological and histochemical studies, the function of this retinofugal system remains unclear. Several functions have been proposed including: gaze stabilization, pecking behavior, dark adaptation, shifting attention, and detection of aerial predators. This nucleus varies in size and organization among some species, but the relative size and morphology of the ION has not been systematically studied. Here, we present a comparison of the relative size and morphology of the ION in 81 species of birds, representing 17 different orders. Our results show that several orders of birds, besides those previously reported, have a large, well-organized ION, including: hummingbirds, woodpeckers, coots and allies, and kingfishers. At the other end of the spectrum, parrots, herons, waterfowl, owls and diurnal raptors have relatively small ION volumes. ION also appears to be absent or unrecognizable is several taxa, including one of the basal avian groups, the tinamous, which suggests that the ION may have evolved only in the more modern group of birds, Neognathae. Finally, we demonstrate that evolutionary changes in the relative size and the cytoarchitectonic organization of ION have occurred largely independent of phylogeny. The large relative size of the ION in orders with very different lifestyles and feeding behaviors suggest there is no clear association with pecking behavior or predator detection. Instead, our results suggest that the ION is more complex and enlarged in birds that have eyes that are emmetropic in some parts of the visual field and myopic in others. We therefore posit that the ION is involved in switching attention between two parts of the retina i.e. from an emmetropic to a myopic part of the retina.

  5. Functional Implications of Species Differences in the Size and Morphology of the Isthmo Optic Nucleus (ION) in Birds

    PubMed Central

    Gutiérrez-Ibáñez, Cristián; Iwaniuk, Andrew N.; Lisney, Thomas J.; Faunes, Macarena; Marín, Gonzalo J.; Wylie, Douglas R.

    2012-01-01

    In birds, there is a retinofugal projection from the brain to the retina originating from the isthmo optic nucleus (ION) in the midbrain. Despite a large number of anatomical, physiological and histochemical studies, the function of this retinofugal system remains unclear. Several functions have been proposed including: gaze stabilization, pecking behavior, dark adaptation, shifting attention, and detection of aerial predators. This nucleus varies in size and organization among some species, but the relative size and morphology of the ION has not been systematically studied. Here, we present a comparison of the relative size and morphology of the ION in 81 species of birds, representing 17 different orders. Our results show that several orders of birds, besides those previously reported, have a large, well-organized ION, including: hummingbirds, woodpeckers, coots and allies, and kingfishers. At the other end of the spectrum, parrots, herons, waterfowl, owls and diurnal raptors have relatively small ION volumes. ION also appears to be absent or unrecognizable is several taxa, including one of the basal avian groups, the tinamous, which suggests that the ION may have evolved only in the more modern group of birds, Neognathae. Finally, we demonstrate that evolutionary changes in the relative size and the cytoarchitectonic organization of ION have occurred largely independent of phylogeny. The large relative size of the ION in orders with very different lifestyles and feeding behaviors suggest there is no clear association with pecking behavior or predator detection. Instead, our results suggest that the ION is more complex and enlarged in birds that have eyes that are emmetropic in some parts of the visual field and myopic in others. We therefore posit that the ION is involved in switching attention between two parts of the retina i.e. from an emmetropic to a myopic part of the retina. PMID:22666395

  6. Sero-survey of Avian Influenza in backyard poultry and wild bird species in Iran-2014.

    PubMed

    Fallah Mehrabadi, M H; Bahonar, A R; Vasfi Marandi, M; Sadrzadeh, A; Tehrani, F; Salman, M D

    2016-06-01

    In almost all villages in Iran backyard birds, especially chickens, are kept for egg and meat production. AI H9N2 subtype is endemic in Iran. Therefore, estimation of AI prevalence among these birds is important to determine the risk of transmission of infection to commercial farms. The aim of this study was to estimate subclinical infections or previous exposure to H5, H7, and H9 subtypes and to identify potentially important determinants of prevalence of this infectious at premises level in backyard poultry, bird gardens, zoos, and wild bird markets in Iran. A survey was conducted using a cross-sectional design throughout the entire country. A total of 329 villages, seven bird gardens, three zoos and five wild bird markets were included. In each village four families that kept birds were included in the collection of biological samples and background information. The Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) was used as the screening test and all ELISA-positive samples were examined with the HI test to differentiate H5, H7, and H9. Among the bird gardens, eight of 15 premises (53.3%) were positive in both the ELISA test and HI for H9N2. Testing of samples collected in the villages revealed that 296 out of 329 villages (90%) had positive ELISA tests and also HI tests for H9. The HI-H9 mean titers in positive units were significantly higher than negative units (P<.001). This study revealed no significant statistical differences between risk variables in seropositive and seronegative bird gardens in the case of H9 (P>.05). The results of this study showed that among the risk variables, mountainous area was a protective factor and lack of hygienic disposal of dead birds was a risk factor for AI; this was also observed in rural poultry. The high sero-prevalence of influenza H9N2 in rural domestic poultry indicates that the disease is endemic. It is necessary to include backyard poultry in any surveillance system and control strategy due to the existence of AIV in

  7. Sero-survey of Avian Influenza in backyard poultry and wild bird species in Iran-2014.

    PubMed

    Fallah Mehrabadi, M H; Bahonar, A R; Vasfi Marandi, M; Sadrzadeh, A; Tehrani, F; Salman, M D

    2016-06-01

    In almost all villages in Iran backyard birds, especially chickens, are kept for egg and meat production. AI H9N2 subtype is endemic in Iran. Therefore, estimation of AI prevalence among these birds is important to determine the risk of transmission of infection to commercial farms. The aim of this study was to estimate subclinical infections or previous exposure to H5, H7, and H9 subtypes and to identify potentially important determinants of prevalence of this infectious at premises level in backyard poultry, bird gardens, zoos, and wild bird markets in Iran. A survey was conducted using a cross-sectional design throughout the entire country. A total of 329 villages, seven bird gardens, three zoos and five wild bird markets were included. In each village four families that kept birds were included in the collection of biological samples and background information. The Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay (ELISA) was used as the screening test and all ELISA-positive samples were examined with the HI test to differentiate H5, H7, and H9. Among the bird gardens, eight of 15 premises (53.3%) were positive in both the ELISA test and HI for H9N2. Testing of samples collected in the villages revealed that 296 out of 329 villages (90%) had positive ELISA tests and also HI tests for H9. The HI-H9 mean titers in positive units were significantly higher than negative units (P<.001). This study revealed no significant statistical differences between risk variables in seropositive and seronegative bird gardens in the case of H9 (P>.05). The results of this study showed that among the risk variables, mountainous area was a protective factor and lack of hygienic disposal of dead birds was a risk factor for AI; this was also observed in rural poultry. The high sero-prevalence of influenza H9N2 in rural domestic poultry indicates that the disease is endemic. It is necessary to include backyard poultry in any surveillance system and control strategy due to the existence of AIV in

  8. Evolutionary consequences of human disturbance in a rainforest bird species from Central Africa.

    PubMed

    Smith, Thomas B; Milá, Borja; Grether, Gregory F; Slabbekoorn, Hans; Sepil, Irem; Buermann, Wolfgang; Saatchi, Sassan; Pollinger, John P

    2008-01-01

    Relatively little attention has been directed towards understanding the impacts of human disturbance on evolutionary processes that produce and maintain biodiversity. Here, we examine the influence of anthropogenic habitat changes on traits typically associated with natural and sexual selection in the little greenbul (Andropadus virens), an African rainforest bird species. Using satellite remote-sensing and field survey data, we classified habitats into nonhuman-altered mature and human-altered secondary forest. Mature rainforest consisted of pristine rainforest, with little or no human influence, and secondary forest was characterized by plantations of coffee and cacao and high human impacts. Andropadus virens abundance was higher in secondary forest, and populations inhabiting mature rainforest were significantly larger in wing and tarsus length and bill size; characters often correlated with fitness. To assess the extent to which characters important in sexual section and mate choice might be influenced by habitat change, we also examined differences in plumage colour and song. Plumage colour and the variance in plumage luminance were found to differ between forest types, and song duration was found to be significantly longer in mature forest. The possible adaptive significance of these differences in traits is discussed. Despite relatively high levels of gene flow across habitats, amplified fragment length polymorphism analysis revealed that a small proportion of high-F(ST) loci differentiated mature from secondary forest populations. These loci were significant outliers against neutral expectations in a simulation analysis, suggesting a role for divergent selection in differentiation across habitats. A distance-based redundancy analysis further showed that forest type as defined by remote-sensing variables was significantly associated with genetic dissimilarities between habitats, even when controlling for distance. The observed shifts in morphology, plumage

  9. Helminth communities of two species of piscivorous birds, Ardea alba (Linnaeus) and Nyctanassa violacea (Gmelin) (Ciconiiformes: Ardeidae), in two coastal lagoons from Guerrero state, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Violante-González, Juan; Monks, Scott; Gil-Guerrero, Salvador; Rojas-Herrera, Agustín A; Flores-Rodríguez, Pedro

    2012-07-01

    The composition and species richness in helminth communities of two species of heron, Ardea alba and Nyctanassa violacea, in two coastal lagoons from Guerrero, Mexico were examined. Nineteen species of helminth (7,804 individuals) were identified in 43 adult birds: 15 digeneans, 1 acanthocephalan, 1 cestode, and 2 nematodes. Eight species co-occurred in herons of both species and lagoons. The prevalence values of seven species and the mean abundance of five species varied significantly between species of birds and between lagoons. The heterophyid, Ascocotyle (Phagicola) longa, was the helminth numerically dominant in the helminth community of A. alba in both lagoons, while the cestode, Parvitaenia cochlearii, dominated the community of N. violacea. At the component community level, species richness varied significantly: 10 species in A. alba from Coyuca to 16 in N. violacea (Tres Palos). All of the birds examined were infected with helminth parasites: three to seven species per host in A. alba from Coyuca, and two to eight species in A. alba and N. violacea from Tres Palos. The results indicate that even though species composition was similar between both species of heron, the structure of their communities was not the same. Differences in the feeding behavior of the birds (day/night habits), as well as local differences in the abundance of species of fish, and infection levels of helminths in each lagoon are suggested as being responsible for the variations registered in the structure of the helminth communities. PMID:22314783

  10. Helminth communities of two species of piscivorous birds, Ardea alba (Linnaeus) and Nyctanassa violacea (Gmelin) (Ciconiiformes: Ardeidae), in two coastal lagoons from Guerrero state, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Violante-González, Juan; Monks, Scott; Gil-Guerrero, Salvador; Rojas-Herrera, Agustín A; Flores-Rodríguez, Pedro

    2012-07-01

    The composition and species richness in helminth communities of two species of heron, Ardea alba and Nyctanassa violacea, in two coastal lagoons from Guerrero, Mexico were examined. Nineteen species of helminth (7,804 individuals) were identified in 43 adult birds: 15 digeneans, 1 acanthocephalan, 1 cestode, and 2 nematodes. Eight species co-occurred in herons of both species and lagoons. The prevalence values of seven species and the mean abundance of five species varied significantly between species of birds and between lagoons. The heterophyid, Ascocotyle (Phagicola) longa, was the helminth numerically dominant in the helminth community of A. alba in both lagoons, while the cestode, Parvitaenia cochlearii, dominated the community of N. violacea. At the component community level, species richness varied significantly: 10 species in A. alba from Coyuca to 16 in N. violacea (Tres Palos). All of the birds examined were infected with helminth parasites: three to seven species per host in A. alba from Coyuca, and two to eight species in A. alba and N. violacea from Tres Palos. The results indicate that even though species composition was similar between both species of heron, the structure of their communities was not the same. Differences in the feeding behavior of the birds (day/night habits), as well as local differences in the abundance of species of fish, and infection levels of helminths in each lagoon are suggested as being responsible for the variations registered in the structure of the helminth communities.

  11. Use of feathers to assess polychlorinated biphenyl and organochlorine pesticide exposure in top predatory bird species of Pakistan.

    PubMed

    Abbasi, Naeem Akhtar; Eulaers, Igor; Jaspers, Veerle L B; Chaudhry, Muhammad Jamshed Iqbal; Frantz, Adrien; Ambus, Per Lennart; Covaci, Adrian; Malik, Riffat Naseem

    2016-11-01

    Little is known about the levels of organochlorines (OCs) in predatory bird species from Asia or the factors governing their concentrations. This study is the first report on concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) in predatory birds of Pakistan. The concentrations of PCBs and OCPs were investigated using tail feathers of ten different species of predatory birds. In addition, concentration differences among body, tail, primary and secondary feathers were investigated for six individuals of black kite (Milvus migrans). Ranges of concentrations were highest for dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene (p,p'-DDE: 0.11-2163ngg(-1) dry wt.) followed by dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (p,p'-DDT: 0.36-345ngg(-1) dry wt.), hexachlorobenzene (HCB: 0.02-34ngg(-1) dry wt.), ∑PCBs (0.03-16ngg(-1) dry wt.) and trans-nonachlor (TN; 0.01-0.13ngg(-1) dry wt.). CB 118, 153, 138, and 180 along with p,p'-DDE were found as the most prevalent compounds. ∑PCBs and ∑DDTs were significantly different among species (both p<0.01) and omnivorous, scavengers, carnivorous and piscivorous trophic guilds (all p<0.03). Only ∑PCBs were significantly differentamong different families of birds (p<0.01). Values of stable isotopes (δ(13)C and δ(15)N) differed significantly (all p<0.01) among species, families, trophic guilds as well as terrestrial and aquatic habitat but not between nocturnal and diurnal predators (p=0.22 for δ(13)C; p=0.50 for δ(15)N). Concentrations of ∑PCBs, ∑DDTs and trans-nonachlor, but not HCB (p=0.86), were significantly different among different feather types (all p<0.01). Trophic and taxonomic affiliation as well as dietary carbon sources (δ(13)C) for species were identified as the variables best explaining the observed variation in exposure to the studied compounds. The significance of contributing factors responsible for OC contamination differences in predatory birds should be further elucidated in future studies.

  12. Use of feathers to assess polychlorinated biphenyl and organochlorine pesticide exposure in top predatory bird species of Pakistan.

    PubMed

    Abbasi, Naeem Akhtar; Eulaers, Igor; Jaspers, Veerle L B; Chaudhry, Muhammad Jamshed Iqbal; Frantz, Adrien; Ambus, Per Lennart; Covaci, Adrian; Malik, Riffat Naseem

    2016-11-01

    Little is known about the levels of organochlorines (OCs) in predatory bird species from Asia or the factors governing their concentrations. This study is the first report on concentrations of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) in predatory birds of Pakistan. The concentrations of PCBs and OCPs were investigated using tail feathers of ten different species of predatory birds. In addition, concentration differences among body, tail, primary and secondary feathers were investigated for six individuals of black kite (Milvus migrans). Ranges of concentrations were highest for dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene (p,p'-DDE: 0.11-2163ngg(-1) dry wt.) followed by dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (p,p'-DDT: 0.36-345ngg(-1) dry wt.), hexachlorobenzene (HCB: 0.02-34ngg(-1) dry wt.), ∑PCBs (0.03-16ngg(-1) dry wt.) and trans-nonachlor (TN; 0.01-0.13ngg(-1) dry wt.). CB 118, 153, 138, and 180 along with p,p'-DDE were found as the most prevalent compounds. ∑PCBs and ∑DDTs were significantly different among species (both p<0.01) and omnivorous, scavengers, carnivorous and piscivorous trophic guilds (all p<0.03). Only ∑PCBs were significantly differentamong different families of birds (p<0.01). Values of stable isotopes (δ(13)C and δ(15)N) differed significantly (all p<0.01) among species, families, trophic guilds as well as terrestrial and aquatic habitat but not between nocturnal and diurnal predators (p=0.22 for δ(13)C; p=0.50 for δ(15)N). Concentrations of ∑PCBs, ∑DDTs and trans-nonachlor, but not HCB (p=0.86), were significantly different among different feather types (all p<0.01). Trophic and taxonomic affiliation as well as dietary carbon sources (δ(13)C) for species were identified as the variables best explaining the observed variation in exposure to the studied compounds. The significance of contributing factors responsible for OC contamination differences in predatory birds should be further elucidated in future studies

  13. Chewing lice (Phthiraptera: Amblycera and Ischnocera) from wild birds in southern Vietnam, with descriptions of two new species.

    PubMed

    Najer, Tomas; Sychra, Oldrich; Kounek, Filip; Papousek, Ivo; Hung, Nguyen Manh

    2014-01-24

    A total of 239 individuals of 50 bird species were examined for chewing lice (Insecta: Phthiraptera) in southern Vietnam. Fifty-six birds of 20 species were parasitised by 15 species of lice belonging to 10 genera from two suborders, Amblycera: Menacanthus, Meromenopon, Myrsidea, and Ischnocera: Alcedoecus, Brueelia, Cuculicola, Meropoecus, Penenirmus, Philopteroides and Philopterus. Thirteen louse samples from Passeriformes were identified to genus only because they contain inadequate material. A total of 29 host-louse associations were found, of which nine are new, including: (1) two new species of the genus Brueelia, which are described and named in this paper: Brueelia binhchauensis from Megalaima lineata (Vieillot, 1816) (Piciformes: Megalaimidae), and Brueelia malacocincla from Malacocincla abbotti Blyth, 1845 (Passeriformes: Pellorneidae); (2) first records of lice from Cyornis hainanus (Ogilvie-Grant, 1900); and (3) the first record of Myrsidea claytoni Hellenthal & Price, 2003 from Cymbirhynchus macrorhynchos (Gmelin, 1788) (Passeriformes: Eurylaimidae), here regarded as a case of natural host-switching. A portion of the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (COI) gene for some species of chewing lice was sequenced in order to assess their genetic divergences.

  14. Thyroid Hormones Correlate with Basal Metabolic Rate but Not Field Metabolic Rate in a Wild Bird Species

    PubMed Central

    Welcker, Jorg; Chastel, Olivier; Gabrielsen, Geir W.; Guillaumin, Jerome; Kitaysky, Alexander S.; Speakman, John R.; Tremblay, Yann; Bech, Claus

    2013-01-01

    Thyroid hormones (TH) are known to stimulate in vitro oxygen consumption of tissues in mammals and birds. Hence, in many laboratory studies a positive relationship between TH concentrations and basal metabolic rate (BMR) has been demonstrated whereas evidence from species in the wild is scarce. Even though basal and field metabolic rates (FMR) are often thought to be intrinsically linked it is still unknown whether a relationship between TH and FMR exists. Here we determine the relationship between the primary thyroid hormone triiodothyronine (T3) with both BMR and FMR in a wild bird species, the black-legged kittiwake (Rissa tridactyla). As predicted we found a strong and positive relationship between plasma concentrations of T3 and both BMR and mass-independent BMR with coefficients of determination ranging from 0.36 to 0.60. In contrast there was no association of T3 levels with either whole-body or mass-independent FMR (R2 = 0.06 and 0.02, respectively). In accordance with in vitro studies our data suggests that TH play an important role in modulating BMR and may serve as a proxy for basal metabolism in wild birds. However, the lack of a relationship between TH and FMR indicates that levels of physical activity in kittiwakes are largely independent of TH concentrations and support recent studies that cast doubt on a direct linkage between BMR and FMR. PMID:23437096

  15. Empirical analysis suggests continuous and homogeneous circulation of Newcastle disease virus in a wide range of wild bird species in Africa.

    PubMed

    Cappelle, J; Caron, A; Servan De Almeida, R; Gil, P; Pedrono, M; Mundava, J; Fofana, B; Balança, G; Dakouo, M; Ould El Mamy, A B; Abolnik, C; Maminiaina, O F; Cumming, G S; De Visscher, M-N; Albina, E; Chevalier, V; Gaidet, N

    2015-04-01

    Newcastle disease (ND) is one of the most important poultry diseases worldwide and can lead to annual losses of up to 80% of backyard chickens in Africa. All bird species are considered susceptible to ND virus (NDV) infection but little is known about the role that wild birds play in the epidemiology of the virus. We present a long-term monitoring of 9000 wild birds in four African countries. Overall, 3·06% of the birds were PCR-positive for NDV infection, with prevalence ranging from 0% to 10% depending on the season, the site and the species considered. Our study shows that ND is circulating continuously and homogeneously in a large range of wild bird species. Several genotypes of NDV circulate concurrently in different species and are phylogenetically closely related to strains circulating in local domestic poultry, suggesting that wild birds may play several roles in the epidemiology of different NDV strains in Africa. We recommend that any strategic plan aiming at controlling ND in Africa should take into account the potential role of the local wild bird community in the transmission of the disease.

  16. Which Species Are We Researching and Why? A Case Study of the Ecology of British Breeding Birds

    PubMed Central

    McKenzie, Ailsa J.; Robertson, Peter A.

    2015-01-01

    Our ecological knowledge base is extensive, but the motivations for research are many and varied, leading to unequal species representation and coverage. As this evidence is used to support a wide range of conservation, management and policy actions, it is important that gaps and biases are identified and understood. In this paper we detail a method for quantifying research effort and impact at the individual species level, and go on to investigate the factors that best explain between-species differences in outputs. We do this using British breeding birds as a case study, producing a ranked list of species based on two scientific publication metrics: total number of papers (a measure of research quantity) and h-index (a measure of the number of highly cited papers on a topic – an indication of research quality). Widespread, populous species which are native, resident and in receipt of biodiversity action plans produced significantly higher publication metrics. Guild was also significant, birds of prey the most studied group, with pigeons and doves the least studied. The model outputs for both metrics were very similar, suggesting that, at least in this example, research quantity and quality were highly correlated. The results highlight three key gaps in the evidence base, with fewer citations and publications relating to migrant breeders, introduced species and species which have experienced contractions in distribution. We suggest that the use of publication metrics in this way provides a novel approach to understanding the scale and drivers of both research quantity and impact at a species level and could be widely applied, both taxonomically and geographically. PMID:26154759

  17. Which Species Are We Researching and Why? A Case Study of the Ecology of British Breeding Birds.

    PubMed

    McKenzie, Ailsa J; Robertson, Peter A

    2015-01-01

    Our ecological knowledge base is extensive, but the motivations for research are many and varied, leading to unequal species representation and coverage. As this evidence is used to support a wide range of conservation, management and policy actions, it is important that gaps and biases are identified and understood. In this paper we detail a method for quantifying research effort and impact at the individual species level, and go on to investigate the factors that best explain between-species differences in outputs. We do this using British breeding birds as a case study, producing a ranked list of species based on two scientific publication metrics: total number of papers (a measure of research quantity) and h-index (a measure of the number of highly cited papers on a topic--an indication of research quality). Widespread, populous species which are native, resident and in receipt of biodiversity action plans produced significantly higher publication metrics. Guild was also significant, birds of prey the most studied group, with pigeons and doves the least studied. The model outputs for both metrics were very similar, suggesting that, at least in this example, research quantity and quality were highly correlated. The results highlight three key gaps in the evidence base, with fewer citations and publications relating to migrant breeders, introduced species and species which have experienced contractions in distribution. We suggest that the use of publication metrics in this way provides a novel approach to understanding the scale and drivers of both research quantity and impact at a species level and could be widely applied, both taxonomically and geographically. PMID:26154759

  18. Functional and evolutionary anatomy of the African suckermouth catfishes (Siluriformes: Mochokidae): convergent evolution in Afrotropical and Neotropical faunas

    PubMed Central

    Geerinckx, Tom; De Kegel, Barbara

    2014-01-01

    Of those fishes scraping food off substrates and using head parts in substrate attachment for station-holding, the catfish families Loricariidae, Astroblepidae and Mochokidae display the most dramatically adapted morphologies. Loricariidae and Astroblepidae, living in the Neotropical freshwaters, exclusively contain suckermouth catfish species, and their anatomy and head kinematics have already been studied into detail. Among Mochokidae, living in the tropical freshwaters of Africa, only the chiloglanidine subfamily has a sucker mouth, and occupies similar niches in Africa as both Neotropical families do in South America. Having derived from relatively unrelated catfish ancestors, their anatomy is poorly known, and the nature of their scraping and station-holding capabilities is not known at all. This paper provides details on the chiloglanidine head anatomy and function (relating their anatomy to that of the non-suckermouth Mochokidae), and compares this Afrotropical suckermouth taxon with both Neotropical suckermouth families. It identifies both convergences and differing anatomical and kinematic solutions to the same key needs of food-scraping and station-holding suckermouth fishes. Chiloglanidine mochokids differ from both Neotropical families in having less mobile jaws, with an upper jaw assisting more in station-holding than in feeding. They share the highly mobile lower lip with both Neotropical taxa, although the configuration of the intermandibular/protractor hyoidei muscle system, changing the volume of the sucker-disc cavity, differs in all three taxa. Chiloglanidines have a single, posterior inflow opening into this cavity, whereas Loricariidae have two lateral openings, and Astroblepidae have none, using an opercular incurrent opening instead. The chiloglanidine buccal valve system consists of two passive valves, as in Astroblepidae. Although less diverse in number of genera and species, this Afrotropical suckermouth taxon possesses the anatomical and

  19. REDUCED FOREST COVER AND CHANGES IN BREEDING BIRD SPECIES COMPOSITION IN RHODE ISLAND

    EPA Science Inventory

    This study was conducted to assess the relationship of land use/cover, riparian vegetation, and avian populations. Our objective was to compare the vegetation structure in riparian corridors with the composition of breeding bird populations in eight Rhode Island subwatersheds alo...

  20. Avian Influenza in Birds

    MedlinePlus

    ... and even kill certain domesticated bird species including chickens, ducks, and turkeys. Infected birds can shed avian ... virus’ ability to cause disease and mortality in chickens in a laboratory setting [2.5 MB, 64 ...

  1. Top-Down-Assisted Bottom-Up Method for Homologous Protein Sequencing: Hemoglobin from 33 Bird Species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Song, Yang; Laskay, Ünige A.; Vilcins, Inger-Marie E.; Barbour, Alan G.; Wysocki, Vicki H.

    2015-11-01

    Ticks are vectors for disease transmission because they are indiscriminant in their feeding on multiple vertebrate hosts, transmitting pathogens between their hosts. Identifying the hosts on which ticks have fed is important for disease prevention and intervention. We have previously shown that hemoglobin (Hb) remnants from a host on which a tick fed can be used to reveal the host's identity. For the present research, blood was collected from 33 bird species that are common in the U.S. as hosts for ticks but that have unknown Hb sequences. A top-down-assisted bottom-up mass spectrometry approach with a customized searching database, based on variability in known bird hemoglobin sequences, has been devised to facilitate fast and complete sequencing of hemoglobin from birds with unknown sequences. These hemoglobin sequences will be added to a hemoglobin database and used for tick host identification. The general approach has the potential to sequence any set of homologous proteins completely in a rapid manner.

  2. Top-down-assisted bottom-up method for homologous protein sequencing: hemoglobin from 33 bird species.

    PubMed

    Song, Yang; Laskay, Ünige A; Vilcins, Inger-Marie E; Barbour, Alan G; Wysocki, Vicki H

    2015-11-01

    Ticks are vectors for disease transmission because they are indiscriminant in their feeding on multiple vertebrate hosts, transmitting pathogens between their hosts. Identifying the hosts on which ticks have fed is important for disease prevention and intervention. We have previously shown that hemoglobin (Hb) remnants from a host on which a tick fed can be used to reveal the host's identity. For the present research, blood was collected from 33 bird species that are common in the U.S. as hosts for ticks but that have unknown Hb sequences. A top-down-assisted bottom-up mass spectrometry approach with a customized searching database, based on variability in known bird hemoglobin sequences, has been devised to facilitate fast and complete sequencing of hemoglobin from birds with unknown sequences. These hemoglobin sequences will be added to a hemoglobin database and used for tick host identification. The general approach has the potential to sequence any set of homologous proteins completely in a rapid manner. Graphical Abstract ᅟ.

  3. The relative impacts of climate and land-use change on conterminous United States bird species from 2001 to 2075.

    PubMed

    Sohl, Terry L

    2014-01-01

    Species distribution models often use climate data to assess contemporary and/or future ranges for animal or plant species. Land use and land cover (LULC) data are important predictor variables for determining species range, yet are rarely used when modeling future distributions. In this study, maximum entropy modeling was used to construct species distribution maps for 50 North American bird species to determine relative contributions of climate and LULC for contemporary (2001) and future (2075) time periods. Species presence data were used as a dependent variable, while climate, LULC, and topographic data were used as predictor variables. Results varied by species, but in general, measures of model fit for 2001 indicated significantly poorer fit when either climate or LULC data were excluded from model simulations. Climate covariates provided a higher contribution to 2001 model results than did LULC variables, although both categories of variables strongly contributed. The area deemed to be "suitable" for 2001 species presence was strongly affected by the choice of model covariates, with significantly larger ranges predicted when LULC was excluded as a covariate. Changes in species ranges for 2075 indicate much larger overall range changes due to projected climate change than due to projected LULC change. However, the choice of study area impacted results for both current and projected model applications, with truncation of actual species ranges resulting in lower model fit scores and increased difficulty in interpreting covariate impacts on species range. Results indicate species-specific response to climate and LULC variables; however, both climate and LULC variables clearly are important for modeling both contemporary and potential future species ranges. PMID:25372571

  4. The relative impacts of climate and land-use change on conterminous United States bird species from 2001 to 2075.

    PubMed

    Sohl, Terry L

    2014-01-01

    Species distribution models often use climate data to assess contemporary and/or future ranges for animal or plant species. Land use and land cover (LULC) data are important predictor variables for determining species range, yet are rarely used when modeling future distributions. In this study, maximum entropy modeling was used to construct species distribution maps for 50 North American bird species to determine relative contributions of climate and LULC for contemporary (2001) and future (2075) time periods. Species presence data were used as a dependent variable, while climate, LULC, and topographic data were used as predictor variables. Results varied by species, but in general, measures of model fit for 2001 indicated significantly poorer fit when either climate or LULC data were excluded from model simulations. Climate covariates provided a higher contribution to 2001 model results than did LULC variables, although both categories of variables strongly contributed. The area deemed to be "suitable" for 2001 species presence was strongly affected by the choice of model covariates, with significantly larger ranges predicted when LULC was excluded as a covariate. Changes in species ranges for 2075 indicate much larger overall range changes due to projected climate change than due to projected LULC change. However, the choice of study area impacted results for both current and projected model applications, with truncation of actual species ranges resulting in lower model fit scores and increased difficulty in interpreting covariate impacts on species range. Results indicate species-specific response to climate and LULC variables; however, both climate and LULC variables clearly are important for modeling both contemporary and potential future species ranges.

  5. The relative impacts of climate and land-use change on conterminous United States bird species from 2001 to 2075

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sohl, Terry L.

    2014-01-01

    Species distribution models often use climate data to assess contemporary and/or future ranges for animal or plant species. Land use and land cover (LULC) data are important predictor variables for determining species range, yet are rarely used when modeling future distributions. In this study, maximum entropy modeling was used to construct species distribution maps for 50 North American bird species to determine relative contributions of climate and LULC for contemporary (2001) and future (2075) time periods. Species presence data were used as a dependent variable, while climate, LULC, and topographic data were used as predictor variables. Results varied by species, but in general, measures of model fit for 2001 indicated significantly poorer fit when either climate or LULC data were excluded from model simulations. Climate covariates provided a higher contribution to 2001 model results than did LULC variables, although both categories of variables strongly contributed. The area deemed to be "suitable" for 2001 species presence was strongly affected by the choice of model covariates, with significantly larger ranges predicted when LULC was excluded as a covariate. Changes in species ranges for 2075 indicate much larger overall range changes due to projected climate change than due to projected LULC change. However, the choice of study area impacted results for both current and projected model applications, with truncation of actual species ranges resulting in lower model fit scores and increased difficulty in interpreting covariate impacts on species range. Results indicate species-specific response to climate and LULC variables; however, both climate and LULC variables clearly are important for modeling both contemporary and potential future species ranges.

  6. The Relative Impacts of Climate and Land-Use Change on Conterminous United States Bird Species from 2001 to 2075

    PubMed Central

    Sohl, Terry L.

    2014-01-01

    Species distribution models often use climate data to assess contemporary and/or future ranges for animal or plant species. Land use and land cover (LULC) data are important predictor variables for determining species range, yet are rarely used when modeling future distributions. In this study, maximum entropy modeling was used to construct species distribution maps for 50 North American bird species to determine relative contributions of climate and LULC for contemporary (2001) and future (2075) time periods. Species presence data were used as a dependent variable, while climate, LULC, and topographic data were used as predictor variables. Results varied by species, but in general, measures of model fit for 2001 indicated significantly poorer fit when either climate or LULC data were excluded from model simulations. Climate covariates provided a higher contribution to 2001 model results than did LULC variables, although both categories of variables strongly contributed. The area deemed to be “suitable” for 2001 species presence was strongly affected by the choice of model covariates, with significantly larger ranges predicted when LULC was excluded as a covariate. Changes in species ranges for 2075 indicate much larger overall range changes due to projected climate change than due to projected LULC change. However, the choice of study area impacted results for both current and projected model applications, with truncation of actual species ranges resulting in lower model fit scores and increased difficulty in interpreting covariate impacts on species range. Results indicate species-specific response to climate and LULC variables; however, both climate and LULC variables clearly are important for modeling both contemporary and potential future species ranges. PMID:25372571

  7. Observations on the biology of Afrotropical Hesperiidae (Lepidoptera). Part 6. Hesperiinae incertae sedis: palm feeders.

    PubMed

    Cock, Matthew J W; Congdon, T Colin E; Collins, Steve C

    2014-07-08

    Partial life histories for 12 Hesperiinae incertae sedis that feed on palms (Arecaceae) are described and illustrated. The genera dealt with are: Perrotia (part), Ploetzia, Zophopetes, Gretna (part), Pteroteinon, Leona, and Caenides (part) (all from Evans' Ploetzia genera group). Although Gamia spp. have been reported to feed on palms, these records are considered to be in error, as caterpillars of this genus feed on Dracaena spp. (Asparagaceae). The life histories of the species documented are fairly uniform, in that caterpillars of most species have rounded brown heads, wider basally, with or without limited black markings, smooth bodies and make simple shelters by rolling leaves. Variation in caterpillar markings and male genitalia of Zophopetes dysmephila (Trimen) and caterpillar and adult markings of Gretna carmen Evans merit further study. In G. carmen, G. waga (Plötz) and G. balenge (Holland), the caterpillars' head and body are covered with hair-like setae, and develop an extensive covering of white waxy powder, which in G. balenge also covers the long setae. Furthermore, the pupa of G. balenge is unusual in having a pair of large, elaborate processes frontally on the head; when disturbed, the pupa vibrates violently and rattles noisily against the sides of the shelter. Ploetzia amygdalis (Mabille) and Pteroteinon laufella (Hewitson) have gregarious caterpillars, whereas the remaining species are solitary. After eclosion, the first instar caterpillars of Gretna spp. moult to the second instar without feeding. The implications of a palm-feeding life-style are discussed, and economic damage and plant quarantine risks to coconut, oil palm and ornamental palms pointed out. The known life histories suggest that all Afrotropical palm-feeding Hesperiidae will belong in the same tribe when the incertae sedis section is further elucidated, although the affinities of Gretna deserve further consideration. 

  8. Observations on the biology of Afrotropical Hesperiidae (Lepidoptera). Part 6. Hesperiinae incertae sedis: palm feeders.

    PubMed

    Cock, Matthew J W; Congdon, T Colin E; Collins, Steve C

    2014-01-01

    Partial life histories for 12 Hesperiinae incertae sedis that feed on palms (Arecaceae) are described and illustrated. The genera dealt with are: Perrotia (part), Ploetzia, Zophopetes, Gretna (part), Pteroteinon, Leona, and Caenides (part) (all from Evans' Ploetzia genera group). Although Gamia spp. have been reported to feed on palms, these records are considered to be in error, as caterpillars of this genus feed on Dracaena spp. (Asparagaceae). The life histories of the species documented are fairly uniform, in that caterpillars of most species have rounded brown heads, wider basally, with or without limited black markings, smooth bodies and make simple shelters by rolling leaves. Variation in caterpillar markings and male genitalia of Zophopetes dysmephila (Trimen) and caterpillar and adult markings of Gretna carmen Evans merit further study. In G. carmen, G. waga (Plötz) and G. balenge (Holland), the caterpillars' head and body are covered with hair-like setae, and develop an extensive covering of white waxy powder, which in G. balenge also covers the long setae. Furthermore, the pupa of G. balenge is unusual in having a pair of large, elaborate processes frontally on the head; when disturbed, the pupa vibrates violently and rattles noisily against the sides of the shelter. Ploetzia amygdalis (Mabille) and Pteroteinon laufella (Hewitson) have gregarious caterpillars, whereas the remaining species are solitary. After eclosion, the first instar caterpillars of Gretna spp. moult to the second instar without feeding. The implications of a palm-feeding life-style are discussed, and economic damage and plant quarantine risks to coconut, oil palm and ornamental palms pointed out. The known life histories suggest that all Afrotropical palm-feeding Hesperiidae will belong in the same tribe when the incertae sedis section is further elucidated, although the affinities of Gretna deserve further consideration.  PMID:25081274

  9. Genetic characterization of oropharyngeal trichomonad isolates from wild birds indicates that genotype is associated with host species, diet and presence of pathognomonic lesions.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Herrero, M C; Sansano-Maestre, J; López Márquez, I; Obón, E; Ponce, C; González, J; Garijo-Toledo, M M; Gómez-Muñoz, M T

    2014-01-01

    Oropharyngeal trichomonad isolates of wild birds from Spain were studied. A total of 1688 samples (1214 of predator birds and 474 of prey species) from wildlife recovery centres and scientific bird-ringing campaigns were analysed from 2011 to 2013. The overall infection prevalence was 20.3% (11.4% in predator birds and 43.3% in prey species). Pathognomonic lesions were present in 26% of the infected birds (57.3% in predator birds and 4.9% in prey species). The most commonly parasitized species were the goshawk (Accipiter gentilis, 74.5%) and the rock pigeon (Columba livia, 79.4%). Host species in which the parasite has not been previously analysed by polymerase chain reaction and sequencing in Spain are also reported: Columba palumbus, Streptopelia turtur, Pica pica, A. gentilis, Accipiter nisus, Asio otus, Bubo bubo, Buteo buteo, Circus aeruginosus, Circus cyaneus, Falco naumanni, Falco peregrinus, Neophron percnopterus, Otus scops, Pernis apivorus and Strix aluco. Sequence analysis of the ITS1/5.8S/ITS2 region revealed five different genotypes and also some mixed infections. A relationship between genotype and host species was observed, but only two genotypes (ITS-OBT-Tg-1and ITS-OBT-Tg-2) were widely distributed. Genotype ITS-OBT-Tg-1 was most frequently found in predator birds and statistically associated with pathognomonic lesions. Non-strict ornithophagous species were at higher risk to develop disease than ornithophagous ones. Genotypes ITS-OBT-Tcl-1 and ITS-OBT-Tcl-2 are new reports, and ITS-OBT-Tvl-5 is reported for the first time in Spain. They showed higher genetic homology to Trichomonas canistomae and Trichomonas vaginalis than to Trichomonas gallinae, indicating the possibility of new species within this genus. PMID:25262786

  10. Genetic characterization of oropharyngeal trichomonad isolates from wild birds indicates that genotype is associated with host species, diet and presence of pathognomonic lesions.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Herrero, M C; Sansano-Maestre, J; López Márquez, I; Obón, E; Ponce, C; González, J; Garijo-Toledo, M M; Gómez-Muñoz, M T

    2014-01-01

    Oropharyngeal trichomonad isolates of wild birds from Spain were studied. A total of 1688 samples (1214 of predator birds and 474 of prey species) from wildlife recovery centres and scientific bird-ringing campaigns were analysed from 2011 to 2013. The overall infection prevalence was 20.3% (11.4% in predator birds and 43.3% in prey species). Pathognomonic lesions were present in 26% of the infected birds (57.3% in predator birds and 4.9% in prey species). The most commonly parasitized species were the goshawk (Accipiter gentilis, 74.5%) and the rock pigeon (Columba livia, 79.4%). Host species in which the parasite has not been previously analysed by polymerase chain reaction and sequencing in Spain are also reported: Columba palumbus, Streptopelia turtur, Pica pica, A. gentilis, Accipiter nisus, Asio otus, Bubo bubo, Buteo buteo, Circus aeruginosus, Circus cyaneus, Falco naumanni, Falco peregrinus, Neophron percnopterus, Otus scops, Pernis apivorus and Strix aluco. Sequence analysis of the ITS1/5.8S/ITS2 region revealed five different genotypes and also some mixed infections. A relationship between genotype and host species was observed, but only two genotypes (ITS-OBT-Tg-1and ITS-OBT-Tg-2) were widely distributed. Genotype ITS-OBT-Tg-1 was most frequently found in predator birds and statistically associated with pathognomonic lesions. Non-strict ornithophagous species were at higher risk to develop disease than ornithophagous ones. Genotypes ITS-OBT-Tcl-1 and ITS-OBT-Tcl-2 are new reports, and ITS-OBT-Tvl-5 is reported for the first time in Spain. They showed higher genetic homology to Trichomonas canistomae and Trichomonas vaginalis than to Trichomonas gallinae, indicating the possibility of new species within this genus.

  11. Species-distance relation for birds of the Solomon Archipelago, and the paradox of the great speciators

    PubMed Central

    Diamond, Jared M.; Gilpin, Michael E.; Mayr, Ernst

    1976-01-01

    For scattered remote islands and for likely forms of immigration and extinction curves, the equilibrium theory of island biogeography leads to the prediction [unk]2 log S/[unk]A[unk]D > 0, where S is the number of species on an island, A island area, and D island distance from the colonization source. This prediction is confirmed for birds of the Solomon Archipelago. Bird species can be classified into three types according to how distance affects their distributions: non-water-crossers, which are stopped completely (usually for psychological reasons) by water gaps of even 1 mile; short-distance colonists, successful at colonizing close but not remote islands; and long-distance colonists, successful at colonizing remote as well as close islands. Almost all of the “great speciators”, the species for whose inter-island geographic variation the Solomons are famous, prove to be short-distance colonists. Lack's interpretation of the decrease in S with D is shown to rest on incorrect assumptions. PMID:16592328

  12. Evolutionary rates of mitochondrial genomes correspond to diversification rates and to contemporary species richness in birds and reptiles.

    PubMed

    Eo, Soo Hyung; DeWoody, J Andrew

    2010-12-01

    Rates of biological diversification should ultimately correspond to rates of genome evolution. Recent studies have compared diversification rates with phylogenetic branch lengths, but incomplete phylogenies hamper such analyses for many taxa. Herein, we use pairwise comparisons of confamilial sauropsid (bird and reptile) mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) genome sequences to estimate substitution rates. These molecular evolutionary rates are considered in light of the age and species richness of each taxonomic family, using a random-walk speciation-extinction process to estimate rates of diversification. We find the molecular clock ticks at disparate rates in different families and at different genes. For example, evolutionary rates are relatively fast in snakes and lizards, intermediate in crocodilians and slow in turtles and birds. There was also rate variation across genes, where non-synonymous substitution rates were fastest at ATP8 and slowest at CO3. Family-by-gene interactions were significant, indicating that local clocks vary substantially among sauropsids. Most importantly, we find evidence that mitochondrial genome evolutionary rates are positively correlated with speciation rates and with contemporary species richness. Nuclear sequences are poorly represented among reptiles, but the correlation between rates of molecular evolution and species diversification also extends to 18 avian nuclear genes we tested. Thus, the nuclear data buttress our mtDNA findings.

  13. Use of observed wild bird activity on poultry farms and a literature review to target species as high priority for avian influenza testing in 2 regions of Canada

    PubMed Central

    Burns, Theresa E.; Ribble, Carl; Stephen, Craig; Kelton, David; Toews, Lorraine; Osterhold, Jason; Wheeler, Hazel

    2012-01-01

    The risk of avian influenza outbreaks in poultry is partially dependent on the probability of contact between domestic poultry and wild birds shedding avian influenza (AI) virus. The major objective of this study was to document wild bird activity on poultry farms to determine which wild bird species should be targeted for AI surveillance in Canada. We collected data in 2 major poultry producing regions of Canada, southwestern Ontario and the Fraser Valley of British Columbia, on the relative abundance of various wild bird species found on poultry farms and on how these species utilized habitat around poultry farms. We reviewed the published literature to determine what was known about AI pathobiology in the species we observed. From these results we created a list of 10 wild bird species that are a priority for further study. These species are the European starling, barn swallow, rock dove, American crow, northwestern crow, American robin, dark-eyed junco, song sparrow, horned lark, and common grackle. Abundance of these and other species varied between provinces and seasons. PMID:22851777

  14. Inference about species richness and community structure using species-specific occupancy models in the National Swiss Breeding Bird Survey MUB

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kery, M.; Royle, J. Andrew; Thomson, David L.; Cooch, Evan G.; Conroy, Michael J.

    2009-01-01

    Species richness is the most widely used biodiversity measure. Virtually always, it cannot be observed but needs to be estimated because some species may be present but remain undetected. This fact is commonly ignored in ecology and management, although it will bias estimates of species richness and related parameters such as occupancy, turnover or extinction rates. We describe a species community modeling strategy based on species-specific models of occurrence, from which estimates of important summaries of community structure, e.g., species richness, occupancy, or measures of similarity among species or sites, are derived by aggregating indicators of occurrence for all species observed in the sample, and for the estimated complement of unobserved species. We use data augmentation for an efficient Bayesian approach to estimation and prediction under this model based on MCMC in WinBUGS. For illustration, we use the Swiss breeding bird survey (MHB) that conducts 2?3 territory-mapping surveys in a systematic sample of 267 1 km2 units on quadrat-specific routes averaging 5.1 km to obtain species-specific estimates of occupancy, and estimates of species richness of all diurnal species free of distorting effects of imperfect detectability. We introduce into our model species-specific covariates relevant to occupancy (elevation, forest cover, route length) and sampling (season, effort). From 1995 to 2004, 185 diurnal breeding bird species were known in Switzerland, and an additional 13 bred 1?3 times since 1900. 134 species were observed during MHB surveys in 254 quadrats surveyed in 2001, and our estimate of 169.9 (95% CI 151?195) therefore appeared sensible. The observed number of species ranged from 4 to 58 (mean 32.8), but with an estimated 0.7?11.2 (mean 2.6) further, unobserved species, the estimated proportion of detected species was 0.48?0.98 (mean 0.91). As is well known, species richness declined at higher elevation and fell above the timberline, and most

  15. Are Species Coexistence Areas a Good Option for Conservation Management? Applications from Fine Scale Modelling in Two Steppe Birds

    PubMed Central

    Tarjuelo, Rocío; Morales, Manuel B.; Traba, Juan; Delgado, M. Paula

    2014-01-01

    Biotic interactions and land uses have been proposed as factors that determine the distribution of the species at local scale. The presence of heterospecifics may modify the habitat selection pattern of the individuals and this may have important implications for the design of effective conservation strategies. However, conservation proposals are often focused on a single flagship or umbrella species taken as representative of an entire assemblage requirements. Our aim is to identify and evaluate the role of coexistence areas at local scale as conservation tools, by using distribution data of two endangered birds, the Little Bustard and the Great Bustard. Presence-only based suitability models for each species were built with MaxEnt using variables of substrate type and topography. Probability maps of habitat suitability for each species were combined to generate a map in which coexistence and exclusive use areas were delimitated. Probabilities of suitable habitat for each species inside coexistence and exclusive areas were compared. As expected, habitat requirements of Little and Great Bustards differed. Coexistence areas presented lower probabilities of habitat suitability than exclusive use ones. We conclude that differences in species' habitat preferences can hinder the efficiency of protected areas with multi-species conservation purposes. Our results highlight the importance of taking into account the role of biotic interactions when designing conservation measurements. PMID:24498210

  16. Bioaccumulation of trace mercury in trophic levels of benthic, benthopelagic, pelagic fish species, and sea birds from Arvand River, Iran.

    PubMed

    Hosseini, Mehdi; Nabavi, Seyed Mohammad Bagher; Parsa, Yaghob

    2013-12-01

    In this study, concentration of mercury was determined in the trophic levels of benthic, benthopelagic, pelagic fish species, and river birds from Arvand River, located in the Khuzestan province in the lowlands of southwestern Iran at the head of the Persian Gulf. The order of mercury concentrations in tissues of the fish species was as follows: liver>gill>muscle and in tissues of the kingfisher species was as follows: feather>liver>kidney>muscle. Therefore, liver in fish and feather in kingfisher exhibited higher mercury concentration than the other tissues. There was a positive correlation between mercury concentrations in fish and kingfisher species with size of its food items. We expected to see higher mercury levels in tissues of female species because they are larger and can eat larger food items. The results of this study show that the highest mean mercury level were found in the kingfisher (Anas crecca), followed by benthic (Epinephelus diacanthus), benthopelagic (Chanos chanos), and pelagic fish (Strongylura strongylura). Mean value of mercury in fish species, S. strongylura were (0.61 μg g(-1) dry weight), C. chanos (0.45 μg g(-1) dry weight), E. diacanthus (0.87 μg g(-1) dry weight), and in kingfisher species A. crecca was (2.64 μg g(-1) dry weight). Significant correlation between mercury concentration in fish and kingfisher may be related to high variability of mercury in the fish.

  17. Are species coexistence areas a good option for conservation management? Applications from fine scale modelling in two steppe birds.

    PubMed

    Tarjuelo, Rocío; Morales, Manuel B; Traba, Juan; Delgado, M Paula

    2014-01-01

    Biotic interactions and land uses have been proposed as factors that determine the distribution of the species at local scale. The presence of heterospecifics may modify the habitat selection pattern of the individuals and this may have important implications for the design of effective conservation strategies. However, conservation proposals are often focused on a single flagship or umbrella species taken as representative of an entire assemblage requirements. Our aim is to identify and evaluate the role of coexistence areas at local scale as conservation tools, by using distribution data of two endangered birds, the Little Bustard and the Great Bustard. Presence-only based suitability models for each species were built with MaxEnt using variables of substrate type and topography. Probability maps of habitat suitability for each species were combined to generate a map in which coexistence and exclusive use areas were delimitated. Probabilities of suitable habitat for each species inside coexistence and exclusive areas were compared. As expected, habitat requirements of Little and Great Bustards differed. Coexistence areas presented lower probabilities of habitat suitability than exclusive use ones. We conclude that differences in species' habitat preferences can hinder the efficiency of protected areas with multi-species conservation purposes. Our results highlight the importance of taking into account the role of biotic interactions when designing conservation measurements. PMID:24498210

  18. Are species coexistence areas a good option for conservation management? Applications from fine scale modelling in two steppe birds.

    PubMed

    Tarjuelo, Rocío; Morales, Manuel B; Traba, Juan; Delgado, M Paula

    2014-01-01

    Biotic interactions and land uses have been proposed as factors that determine the distribution of the species at local scale. The presence of heterospecifics may modify the habitat selection pattern of the individuals and this may have important implications for the design of effective conservation strategies. However, conservation proposals are often focused on a single flagship or umbrella species taken as representative of an entire assemblage requirements. Our aim is to identify and evaluate the role of coexistence areas at local scale as conservation tools, by using distribution data of two endangered birds, the Little Bustard and the Great Bustard. Presence-only based suitability models for each species were built with MaxEnt using variables of substrate type and topography. Probability maps of habitat suitability for each species were combined to generate a map in which coexistence and exclusive use areas were delimitated. Probabilities of suitable habitat for each species inside coexistence and exclusive areas were compared. As expected, habitat requirements of Little and Great Bustards differed. Coexistence areas presented lower probabilities of habitat suitability than exclusive use ones. We conclude that differences in species' habitat preferences can hinder the efficiency of protected areas with multi-species conservation purposes. Our results highlight the importance of taking into account the role of biotic interactions when designing conservation measurements.

  19. Monitoring bird population trends

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Robbins, C.S.; Slusher, John P.; Hinckley, Thomas M.

    1974-01-01

    The Breeding Bird Survey monitors annually the breeding populations of nearly 500 bird species by means of 2,000 random roadside counts of fifty 3-minute stops each. Results are computer-analyzed by State and Province, physiographic and geographic regions, and for the entire continent. Short- and long-term population changes are detected and maps showing distribution and relative abundance are prepared. A computerized bibliography of breeding bird censuses currently in preparation will permit retrieval of bird density data by bird species, plant community, and geographic location. These two programs will greatly facilitate management for nongame species.

  20. Determination of temperate bird-flower interactions as entangled mutualistic and antagonistic sub-networks: characterization at the network and species levels.

    PubMed

    Yoshikawa, Tetsuro; Isagi, Yuji

    2014-05-01

    Most network studies on biological interactions consider only a single interaction type. However, individual species are simultaneously positioned in various types of interactions. The ways in which different network types are merged and entangled, and the variations in network structures between different sympatric networks, require full elucidation. Incorporating interaction types and disentangling complex networks is crucial, because the integration of various network architectures has the potential to alter the stability and co-evolutionary dynamics of the whole network. To reveal how different types of interaction networks are entangled, we focused on the interaction between birds and flowers of temperate plants in Japan, where flower-feeding birds are mainly generalist passerines, acting as pollinators and predators of flowers. Using long-term monitoring data, we investigated the flower-feeding episodes of birds. We constructed the whole network (WN) between birds and plants, separating the network into mutualistic and antagonistic sub-networks (MS and AS, respectively). We investigated structural properties of the three quantified networks and species-level characteristics of the main bird species. For bird species, we evaluated dietary similarity, dietary specialization and shifts of feeding behaviour relative to plant traits. Our results indicate that WN comprises entangled MS and AS, sharing considerable proportions of bird and plant assemblages. We observed distinctive differences in the network structural properties between the two sub-networks. In comparison with AS, MS had lower numbers of bird and plant species, showed lower specialization and modularity and exhibited higher nestedness. At the species level, the Japanese white-eye acted as pollinator, while the brown-eared bulbul acted as both pollinator and predator for large numbers of flowers, based on its behavioural plasticity. Overall, the pattern of avian feeding behaviour was influenced by

  1. 45 CFR 670.25 - Designation of specially protected species of native mammals, birds, and plants.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... Species by the Antarctic Treaty Parties and is hereby designated Specially Protected Species: Common Name... Welfare (Continued) NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION CONSERVATION OF ANTARCTIC ANIMALS AND PLANTS...

  2. Anticoagulant rodenticide exposure and toxicosis in four species of birds of prey presented to a wildlife clinic in Massachusetts, 2006-2010.

    PubMed

    Murray, Maureen

    2011-03-01

    Mortalities among birds of prey from anticoagulant rodenticide (AR) toxicosis have been documented in several countries. Reports on extent of exposure within regions of the United States are limited. This study investigated AR exposure and toxicosis in four species of birds of prey (red-tailed hawks [Buteo jamaicensis], barred owls [Strix varia], eastern screech owls [Megascops asio] and great horned owls [Bubo virginianus]) presented to a wildlife clinic in Massachusetts. The aims of this study are to document the proportion of these four species that died or were euthanized due to their presenting injuries that had detectable amounts of ARs in liver tissue; to identify and quantify ARs present; to describe clinical, postmortem, and histopathologic signs of toxicosis; to evaluate potential sublethal effects of AR exposure; and to associate liver AR level with toxicosis. Birds included in the study were sampled without regard to signs of AR toxicosis. Postmortem examinations were conducted, and liver samples were analyzed for AR residues. Of 161 birds tested, 86% had AR residues in liver tissue. The second-generation AR (SGAR) brodifacoum was identified in 99% of positive birds. Mortality from AR toxicosis was diagnosed in 6% of birds. No indications of sublethal effects of exposure were found, and no association between liver brodifacoum level and signs of toxicosis was apparent. Given the high proportion of birds in this study exposed to ARs, specifically brodifacoum, continued monitoring is warranted as new U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations on the sale and use of SGARs are enacted. PMID:22946375

  3. Bird population declines due to radiation exposure at Chernobyl are stronger in species with pheomelanin-based coloration.

    PubMed

    Galván, Ismael; Mousseau, Timothy A; Møller, Anders P

    2011-04-01

    Eumelanin and pheomelanin are the most common pigments providing color to the integument of vertebrates. While pheomelanogenesis requires high levels of a key intracellular antioxidant (glutathione, GSH), eumelanogenesis is inhibited by GSH. This implies that species that possess the molecular basis to produce large amounts of pheomelanin might be more limited in coping with environmental conditions that generate oxidative stress than species that produce eumelanin. Exposure to ionizing radiation produces free radicals and depletes antioxidant resources. GSH is particularly susceptible to radiation, so that species with large proportions of pheomelanic integument may be limited by the availability of GSH to combat oxidative stress and may thus suffer more from radiation effects. We tested this hypothesis in 97 species of birds censused in areas with varying levels of radioactive contamination around Chernobyl. After controlling for the effects of carotenoid-based color, body mass and similarity among taxa due to common phylogenetic descent, the proportion of pheomelanic plumage was strongly negatively related to the slope estimates of the relationship between abundance and radiation levels, while no effect of eumelanic color proportion was found. This represents the first report of an effect of the expression of melanin-based coloration on the capacity to resist the effects of ionizing radiation. Population declines were also stronger in species that exhibit carotenoid-based coloration and have large body mass. The magnitude of population declines had a relatively high phylogenetic signal, indicating that certain groups of birds, especially non-corvid passeriforms, are particularly susceptible to suffer from the effects of radioactive contamination due to phylogenetic inertia. PMID:21136083

  4. Bird population declines due to radiation exposure at Chernobyl are stronger in species with pheomelanin-based coloration.

    PubMed

    Galván, Ismael; Mousseau, Timothy A; Møller, Anders P

    2011-04-01

    Eumelanin and pheomelanin are the most common pigments providing color to the integument of vertebrates. While pheomelanogenesis requires high levels of a key intracellular antioxidant (glutathione, GSH), eumelanogenesis is inhibited by GSH. This implies that species that possess the molecular basis to produce large amounts of pheomelanin might be more limited in coping with environmental conditions that generate oxidative stress than species that produce eumelanin. Exposure to ionizing radiation produces free radicals and depletes antioxidant resources. GSH is particularly susceptible to radiation, so that species with large proportions of pheomelanic integument may be limited by the availability of GSH to combat oxidative stress and may thus suffer more from radiation effects. We tested this hypothesis in 97 species of birds censused in areas with varying levels of radioactive contamination around Chernobyl. After controlling for the effects of carotenoid-based color, body mass and similarity among taxa due to common phylogenetic descent, the proportion of pheomelanic plumage was strongly negatively related to the slope estimates of the relationship between abundance and radiation levels, while no effect of eumelanic color proportion was found. This represents the first report of an effect of the expression of melanin-based coloration on the capacity to resist the effects of ionizing radiation. Population declines were also stronger in species that exhibit carotenoid-based coloration and have large body mass. The magnitude of population declines had a relatively high phylogenetic signal, indicating that certain groups of birds, especially non-corvid passeriforms, are particularly susceptible to suffer from the effects of radioactive contamination due to phylogenetic inertia.

  5. Predicting Landscape-Genetic Consequences of Habitat Loss, Fragmentation and Mobility for Multiple Species of Woodland Birds

    PubMed Central

    Amos, J. Nevil; Bennett, Andrew F.; Mac Nally, Ralph; Newell, Graeme; Pavlova, Alexandra; Radford, James Q.; Thomson, James R.; White, Matt; Sunnucks, Paul

    2012-01-01

    Inference concerning the impact of habitat fragmentation on dispersal and gene flow is a key theme in landscape genetics. Recently, the ability of established approaches to identify reliably the differential effects of landscape structure (e.g. land-cover composition, remnant vegetation configuration and extent) on the mobility of organisms has been questioned. More explicit methods of predicting and testing for such effects must move beyond post hoc explanations for single landscapes and species. Here, we document a process for making a priori predictions, using existing spatial and ecological data and expert opinion, of the effects of landscape structure on genetic structure of multiple species across replicated landscape blocks. We compare the results of two common methods for estimating the influence of landscape structure on effective distance: least-cost path analysis and isolation-by-resistance. We present a series of alternative models of genetic connectivity in the study area, represented by different landscape resistance surfaces for calculating effective distance, and identify appropriate null models. The process is applied to ten species of sympatric woodland-dependant birds. For each species, we rank a priori the expectation of fit of genetic response to the models according to the expected response of birds to loss of structural connectivity and landscape-scale tree-cover. These rankings (our hypotheses) are presented for testing with empirical genetic data in a subsequent contribution. We propose that this replicated landscape, multi-species approach offers a robust method for identifying the likely effects of landscape fragmentation on dispersal. PMID:22363508

  6. Do Bird Assemblages Predict Susceptibility by E-Waste Pollution? A Comparative Study Based on Species- and Guild-Dependent Responses in China Agroecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Qiang; Wu, Jiangping; Sun, Yuxin; Zhang, Min; Mai, Bixian; Mo, Ling; Lee, Tien Ming; Zou, Fasheng

    2015-01-01

    Indirect effects of electronic waste (e-waste) have been proposed as a causal factor in the decline of bird populations, but analyses of the severity impacts on community assembly are currently lacking. To explore how population abundance/species diversity are influenced, and which functional traits are important in determining e-waste susceptibility, here we surveyed breeding and overwintering birds with a hierarchically nested sampling design, and used linear mixed models to analyze changes in bird assemblages along an exposure gradient in South China. Total bird abundance and species diversity decreased with e-waste severity (exposed < surrounding < reference), reflecting the decreasing discharge and consequent side effects. Twenty-five breeding species exclusively used natural farmland, and nine species decreased significantly in relative abundance at e-waste polluted sites. A high pairwise similarity between exposed and surrounding sites indicates a diffuse effect of pollutants on the species assembly at local scale. We show that sensitivity to e-waste severity varies substantially across functional guild, with the prevalence of woodland insectivorous and grassland specialists declining, while some open farmland generalists such as arboreal frugivores, and terrestrial granivores were also rare. By contrast, the response of waterbirds, omnivorous and non-breeding visitors seem to be tolerable to a wide range of pollution so far. These findings underscore that improper e-waste dismantling results in a severe decline of bird diversity, and the different bird assemblages on polluted and natural farmlands imply species- and guild-dependent susceptibility with functional traits. Moreover, a better understanding of the impact of e-waste with different pollution levels, combined multiple pollutants, and in a food-web context on bird is required in future. PMID:25811881

  7. Do bird assemblages predict susceptibility by e-waste pollution? A comparative study based on species- and guild-dependent responses in China agroecosystems.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Qiang; Wu, Jiangping; Sun, Yuxin; Zhang, Min; Mai, Bixian; Mo, Ling; Lee, Tien Ming; Zou, Fasheng

    2015-01-01

    Indirect effects of electronic waste (e-waste) have been proposed as a causal factor in the decline of bird populations, but analyses of the severity impacts on community assembly are currently lacking. To explore how population abundance/species diversity are influenced, and which functional traits are important in determining e-waste susceptibility, here we surveyed breeding and overwintering birds with a hierarchically nested sampling design, and used linear mixed models to analyze changes in bird assemblages along an exposure gradient in South China. Total bird abundance and species diversity decreased with e-waste severity (exposed < surrounding < reference), reflecting the decreasing discharge and consequent side effects. Twenty-five breeding species exclusively used natural farmland, and nine species decreased significantly in relative abundance at e-waste polluted sites. A high pairwise similarity between exposed and surrounding sites indicates a diffuse effect of pollutants on the species assembly at local scale. We show that sensitivity to e-waste severity varies substantially across functional guild, with the prevalence of woodland insectivorous and grassland specialists declining, while some open farmland generalists such as arboreal frugivores, and terrestrial granivores were also rare. By contrast, the response of waterbirds, omnivorous and non-breeding visitors seem to be tolerable to a wide range of pollution so far. These findings underscore that improper e-waste dismantling results in a severe decline of bird diversity, and the different bird assemblages on polluted and natural farmlands imply species- and guild-dependent susceptibility with functional traits. Moreover, a better understanding of the impact of e-waste with different pollution levels, combined multiple pollutants, and in a food-web context on bird is required in future.

  8. Variation of Basal EROD Activities in Ten Passerine Bird Species – Relationships with Diet and Migration Status

    PubMed Central

    Rainio, Miia J.; Kanerva, Mirella; Wahlberg, Niklas; Nikinmaa, Mikko; Eeva, Tapio

    2012-01-01

    Inter-specific differences in animal defence mechanisms against toxic substances are currently poorly understood. The ethoxyresorufin-O-deethylase (EROD) enzyme plays an important role in defence against toxic chemicals in a wide variety of animals, and it is an important biomarker for environmental contamination. We compared basal hepatic EROD activity levels among ten passerine species to see if there is inter-specific variation in enzyme activity, especially in relation to their diet and migration status. Migratory insectivores showed higher EROD activity compared to granivores. We hypothesize that the variable invertebrate diet of migratory insectivores contains a wider range of natural toxins than the narrower diet of granivores. This may have affected the evolution of mixed function oxidases (MFO) system and enzyme activities. We further tested whether metabolic rates or relative liver size were associated with the variation in detoxification capacity. We found no association between EROD activity and relative (per mass unit) basal metabolic rate (BMR). Instead, EROD activity and relative liver mass (% of body mass) correlated positively, suggesting that a proportionally large liver also functions efficiently. Our results suggest that granivores and non-migratory birds may be more vulnerable to environmental contaminants than insectivores and migratory birds. The diet and migration status, however, are phylogenetically strongly connected to each other, and their roles cannot be fully separated in our analysis with only ten passerine species. PMID:22479477

  9. The Influence of Vegetation Height Heterogeneity on Forest and Woodland Bird Species Richness across the United States

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Qiongyu; Swatantran, Anu; Dubayah, Ralph; Goetz, Scott J.

    2014-01-01

    Avian diversity is under increasing pressures. It is thus critical to understand the ecological variables that contribute to large scale spatial distribution of avian species diversity. Traditionally, studies have relied primarily on two-dimensional habitat structure to model broad scale species richness. Vegetation vertical structure is increasingly used at local scales. However, the spatial arrangement of vegetation height has never been taken into consideration. Our goal was to examine the efficacies of three-dimensional forest structure, particularly the spatial heterogeneity of vegetation height in improving avian richness models across forested ecoregions in the U.S. We developed novel habitat metrics to characterize the spatial arrangement of vegetation height using the National Biomass and Carbon Dataset for the year 2000 (NBCD). The height-structured metrics were compared with other habitat metrics for statistical association with richness of three forest breeding bird guilds across Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) routes: a broadly grouped woodland guild, and two forest breeding guilds with preferences for forest edge and for interior forest. Parametric and non-parametric models were built to examine the improvement of predictability. Height-structured metrics had the strongest associations with species richness, yielding improved predictive ability for the woodland guild richness models (r2 = ∼0.53 for the parametric models, 0.63 the non-parametric models) and the forest edge guild models (r2 = ∼0.34 for the parametric models, 0.47 the non-parametric models). All but one of the linear models incorporating height-structured metrics showed significantly higher adjusted-r2 values than their counterparts without additional metrics. The interior forest guild richness showed a consistent low association with height-structured metrics. Our results suggest that height heterogeneity, beyond canopy height alone, supplements habitat characterization and

  10. The influence of vegetation height heterogeneity on forest and woodland bird species richness across the United States.

    PubMed

    Huang, Qiongyu; Swatantran, Anu; Dubayah, Ralph; Goetz, Scott J

    2014-01-01

    Avian diversity is under increasing pressures. It is thus critical to understand the ecological variables that contribute to large scale spatial distribution of avian species diversity. Traditionally, studies have relied primarily on two-dimensional habitat structure to model broad scale species richness. Vegetation vertical structure is increasingly used at local scales. However, the spatial arrangement of vegetation height has never been taken into consideration. Our goal was to examine the efficacies of three-dimensional forest structure, particularly the spatial heterogeneity of vegetation height in improving avian richness models across forested ecoregions in the U.S. We developed novel habitat metrics to characterize the spatial arrangement of vegetation height using the National Biomass and Carbon Dataset for the year 2000 (NBCD). The height-structured metrics were compared with other habitat metrics for statistical association with richness of three forest breeding bird guilds across Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) routes: a broadly grouped woodland guild, and two forest breeding guilds with preferences for forest edge and for interior forest. Parametric and non-parametric models were built to examine the improvement of predictability. Height-structured metrics had the strongest associations with species richness, yielding improved predictive ability for the woodland guild richness models (r(2) = ∼ 0.53 for the parametric models, 0.63 the non-parametric models) and the forest edge guild models (r(2) = ∼ 0.34 for the parametric models, 0.47 the non-parametric models). All but one of the linear models incorporating height-structured metrics showed significantly higher adjusted-r2 values than their counterparts without additional metrics. The interior forest guild richness showed a consistent low association with height-structured metrics. Our results suggest that height heterogeneity, beyond canopy height alone, supplements habitat characterization and

  11. The influence of vegetation height heterogeneity on forest and woodland bird species richness across the United States.

    PubMed

    Huang, Qiongyu; Swatantran, Anu; Dubayah, Ralph; Goetz, Scott J

    2014-01-01

    Avian diversity is under increasing pressures. It is thus critical to understand the ecological variables that contribute to large scale spatial distribution of avian species diversity. Traditionally, studies have relied primarily on two-dimensional habitat structure to model broad scale species richness. Vegetation vertical structure is increasingly used at local scales. However, the spatial arrangement of vegetation height has never been taken into consideration. Our goal was to examine the efficacies of three-dimensional forest structure, particularly the spatial heterogeneity of vegetation height in improving avian richness models across forested ecoregions in the U.S. We developed novel habitat metrics to characterize the spatial arrangement of vegetation height using the National Biomass and Carbon Dataset for the year 2000 (NBCD). The height-structured metrics were compared with other habitat metrics for statistical association with richness of three forest breeding bird guilds across Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) routes: a broadly grouped woodland guild, and two forest breeding guilds with preferences for forest edge and for interior forest. Parametric and non-parametric models were built to examine the improvement of predictability. Height-structured metrics had the strongest associations with species richness, yielding improved predictive ability for the woodland guild richness models (r(2) = ∼ 0.53 for the parametric models, 0.63 the non-parametric models) and the forest edge guild models (r(2) = ∼ 0.34 for the parametric models, 0.47 the non-parametric models). All but one of the linear models incorporating height-structured metrics showed significantly higher adjusted-r2 values than their counterparts without additional metrics. The interior forest guild richness showed a consistent low association with height-structured metrics. Our results suggest that height heterogeneity, beyond canopy height alone, supplements habitat characterization and

  12. Is supplementary feeding in gardens a driver of evolutionary change in a migratory bird species?

    PubMed

    Plummer, Kate E; Siriwardena, Gavin M; Conway, Greg J; Risely, Kate; Toms, Mike P

    2015-12-01

    Human activities are causing rapid environmental change at a global scale. Urbanization is responsible for some of the most extreme human-altered habitats and is a known driver of evolutionary change, but evidence and understanding of these processes is limited. Here, we investigate the potential underlying mechanisms contributing to the contemporary evolution of migration behaviour in the Eurasian blackcap (Sylvia atricapilla). Blackcaps from central Europe have been wintering in urban areas of Britain with increasing frequency over the past 60 years, rather than migrating south to the Mediterranean. It has been hypothesized that the popularization of providing supplementary foods for wild birds within Britain may have influenced this marked migratory change, but quantifying the selective forces shaping evolutionary changes remains challenging. Using a long-term national scale data set, we examine both the spatial distribution and interannual variation in blackcap wintering behaviour in Britain in relation to supplementary food availability and local climate. Over a 12-year period, we show that blackcaps are becoming increasingly associated with the provision of supplementary foods in British gardens, and that the reliability of bird food supplies is influencing their winter distribution at a national scale. In addition, local climatic temperatures and broader scale weather variation are also important determinants of blackcap wintering patterns once they arrive in Britain. Based on our findings, we conclude that a synergistic effect of increased availability of feeding resources, in the form of garden bird food, coupled with climatic amelioration, has enabled a successful new wintering population to become established in Britain. As global biodiversity is threatened by human-induced environmental change, this study presents new and timely evidence of the role human activities can play in shaping evolutionary trajectories. PMID:26400594

  13. Detectability in Audio-Visual Surveys of Tropical Rainforest Birds: The Influence of Species, Weather and Habitat Characteristics

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Alexander S.; Marques, Tiago A.; Shoo, Luke P.; Williams, Stephen E.

    2015-01-01

    Indices of relative abundance do not control for variation in detectability, which can bias density estimates such that ecological processes are difficult to infer. Distance sampling methods can be used to correct for detectability, but in rainforest, where dense vegetation and diverse assemblages complicate sampling, information is lacking about factors affecting their application. Rare species present an additional challenge, as data may be too sparse to fit detection functions. We present analyses of distance sampling data collected for a diverse tropical rainforest bird assemblage across broad elevational and latitudinal gradients in North Queensland, Australia. Using audio and visual detections, we assessed the influence of various factors on Effective Strip Width (ESW), an intuitively useful parameter, since it can be used to calculate an estimate of density from count data. Body size and species exerted the most important influence on ESW, with larger species detectable over greater distances than smaller species. Secondarily, wet weather and high shrub density decreased ESW for most species. ESW for several species also differed between summer and winter, possibly due to seasonal differences in calling behavior. Distance sampling proved logistically intensive in these environments, but large differences in ESW between species confirmed the need to correct for detection probability to obtain accurate density estimates. Our results suggest an evidence-based approach to controlling for factors influencing detectability, and avenues for further work including modeling detectability as a function of species characteristics such as body size and call characteristics. Such models may be useful in developing a calibration for non-distance sampling data and for estimating detectability of rare species. PMID:26110433

  14. Detectability in Audio-Visual Surveys of Tropical Rainforest Birds: The Influence of Species, Weather and Habitat Characteristics.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Alexander S; Marques, Tiago A; Shoo, Luke P; Williams, Stephen E

    2015-01-01

    Indices of relative abundance do not control for variation in detectability, which can bias density estimates such that ecological processes are difficult to infer. Distance sampling methods can be used to correct for detectability, but in rainforest, where dense vegetation and diverse assemblages complicate sampling, information is lacking about factors affecting their application. Rare species present an additional challenge, as data may be too sparse to fit detection functions. We present analyses of distance sampling data collected for a diverse tropical rainforest bird assemblage across broad elevational and latitudinal gradients in North Queensland, Australia. Using audio and visual detections, we assessed the influence of various factors on Effective Strip Width (ESW), an intuitively useful parameter, since it can be used to calculate an estimate of density from count data. Body size and species exerted the most important influence on ESW, with larger species detectable over greater distances than smaller species. Secondarily, wet weather and high shrub density decreased ESW for most species. ESW for several species also differed between summer and winter, possibly due to seasonal differences in calling behavior. Distance sampling proved logistically intensive in these environments, but large differences in ESW between species confirmed the need to correct for detection probability to obtain accurate density estimates. Our results suggest an evidence-based approach to controlling for factors influencing detectability, and avenues for further work including modeling detectability as a function of species characteristics such as body size and call characteristics. Such models may be useful in developing a calibration for non-distance sampling data and for estimating detectability of rare species.

  15. Species richness, relative abundance, and habitat associations of nocturnal birds along the rio grande in Southern texas

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Skoruppa, M.K.; Woodin, M.C.; Blacklock, G.

    2009-01-01

    The segment of the Rio Grande between International Falcon Reservoir and Del Rio, Texas (distance ca. 350 km), remains largely unexplored ornithologically. We surveyed nocturnal birds monthly during February-June 1998 at 19 stations along the Rio Grande (n = 6) and at upland stock ponds (n = 13) in Webb County, Texas. We conducted 10-min point counts (n = 89) after sunset and before moonset. Four species of owls and five species of nightjars were detected. Nightjars, as a group, were nearly five limes more abundant (mean number/count = 2.63) than owls (mean number = 0.55). The most, common owl, the great horned owl (Bubo virginianus), had a mean number of 0.25/point count. The mean for elf owls (Micrathene whitneyi) was 0.16/point count. The most common nightjars were the common poorwill (Phalaenoptilus nuttallii; 1.21/point count) and lesser nighthawk (Chordeiles acutipennir, 1.16/point count). Survey sites on the river supported more species (mean = 2.2) than did upland stock ponds (mean = 1.4). However, only one species (common pauraque, Nyctidromus albicollis) showed a preference for the river sites. Our results establish this segment of the Rio Grande in southern Texas as an area of high diversity of nightjars in the United States, matched (in numbers of species) only by southeastern Arizona and southwestern New Mexico.

  16. Bird Species Composition and Feeding Guilds Based on Point Count and Mist Netting Methods at The Paya Indah Wetland Reserve, Peninsular Malaysia

    PubMed Central

    Zakaria, Mohamed; Rajpar, Muhammad Nawaz

    2010-01-01

    A comparison study was conducted to determine the bird species composition, relative abundance, species diversity and feeding guilds based on point count (PC) and mist netting (MN) at the Paya Indah Wetland Reserve (PIWR), Peninsular Malaysia. A total of 13872 bird observations belonging to 100 species and 38 families were recorded using the PC method over 15 consecutive months, and a total of 1478 bird individuals belonging to 65 species and 33 families were captured using the MN method over 1260 netting hours. The results showed that Treron vernans (1723 observations; 12.42%) was the most abundant bird species using the PC method, whereas Pycnonotus goiavier (378 individuals; 25.64%) was the most abundant bird species using the MN method. The Ardeidae (9 species; 23.68%) was the most dominant family using the PC method, but the Rallidae (6 species; 18.18%) was the most dominant family using the MN method. The PC method produced higher species diversity (Shannon’s N1 = 31.22) and richness (Margalef’s R1 = 10.42) than MN, whereas the MN method produced higher species evenness (McIntosh’s E = 0.86) than the PC method. Frugivore/insectivore comprised of bulbuls, orioles, pigeons and starlings was the most dominant feeding guild in both methods (PC = 27.81% and MN = 32.88%). In contrast, carnivore was the rarest feeding guild in both methods (i.e. PC = 0.17% and MN = 0.20%). These findings indicate that the PC method is more efficient and produces better results than the MN method. PMID:24575196

  17. Bird species composition and feeding guilds based on point count and mist netting methods at the paya indah wetland reserve, peninsular malaysia.

    PubMed

    Zakaria, Mohamed; Rajpar, Muhammad Nawaz

    2010-12-01

    A comparison study was conducted to determine the bird species composition, relative abundance, species diversity and feeding guilds based on point count (PC) and mist netting (MN) at the Paya Indah Wetland Reserve (PIWR), Peninsular Malaysia. A total of 13872 bird observations belonging to 100 species and 38 families were recorded using the PC method over 15 consecutive months, and a total of 1478 bird individuals belonging to 65 species and 33 families were captured using the MN method over 1260 netting hours. The results showed that Treron vernans (1723 observations; 12.42%) was the most abundant bird species using the PC method, whereas Pycnonotus goiavier (378 individuals; 25.64%) was the most abundant bird species using the MN method. The Ardeidae (9 species; 23.68%) was the most dominant family using the PC method, but the Rallidae (6 species; 18.18%) was the most dominant family using the MN method. The PC method produced higher species diversity (Shannon's N1 = 31.22) and richness (Margalef's R1 = 10.42) than MN, whereas the MN method produced higher species evenness (McIntosh's E = 0.86) than the PC method. Frugivore/insectivore comprised of bulbuls, orioles, pigeons and starlings was the most dominant feeding guild in both methods (PC = 27.81% and MN = 32.88%). In contrast, carnivore was the rarest feeding guild in both methods (i.e. PC = 0.17% and MN = 0.20%). These findings indicate that the PC method is more efficient and produces better results than the MN method.

  18. Behavioural and hormonal effects of social isolation and neophobia in a gregarious bird species, the European starling (Sturnus vulgaris).

    PubMed

    Apfelbeck, Beate; Raess, Michael

    2008-08-01

    Separating gregarious individuals from their group members often results in behavioural and physiological changes, like increased levels of corticosterone. Testosterone and corticosterone, in particular, have been implicated in the response of mammals to novelty. Data in birds are, however, rare. The presence or absence of group members may also influence an individual's response to novel stimuli. We assessed the behaviour and hormonal response of European starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) to a novel object in two different situations and seasons: each starling was tested when separated and when in contact with its group members in May/June (breeding season) and again in September/October (non-breeding season). Starlings are gregarious throughout the year, but as foraging flocks are small during the breeding season and large during the non-breeding season, we assumed that non-breeding starlings would be more affected by social isolation. Overall, starlings had higher levels of corticosterone, lost more body mass, and were more active when they were separated from their group. Isolated individuals, however, did not show a greater neophobic response than individuals in the presence of their group members in either season. Circulating levels of testosterone and corticosterone were higher after a test with novel object than after a test with only the familiar feeding dish in both sexes and seasons. However, control tests for handling effects confirmed only the increase in testosterone. Our study shows that social isolation is stressful for unrelated and unpaired members of a wild flocking bird species and demonstrates that novelty can lead to a rise in testosterone in birds. PMID:18514197

  19. Within-season increase in parental investment in a long-lived bird species: investment shifts to maximize successful reproduction?

    PubMed

    Schneider, N A; Griesser, M

    2015-01-01

    In nest-building species predation of nest contents is a main cause of reproductive failure and parents have to trade off reproductive investment against antipredatory behaviours. While this trade-off is modified by lifespan (short-lived species prioritize current reproduction; long-lived species prioritize future reproduction), it may vary within a breeding season, but this idea has only been tested in short-lived species. Yet, life history theory does not make any prediction how long-lived species should trade off current against future reproductive investment within a season. Here, we investigated this trade-off through predator-exposure experiments in a long-lived bird species, the brown thornbill. We exposed breeding pairs that had no prior within-season reproductive success to the models of a nest predator and a predator of adults during their first or second breeding attempt. Overall, parents reduced their feeding rate in the presence of a predator, but parents feeding second broods were more risk sensitive and almost ceased feeding when exposed to both types of predators. However, during second breeding attempts, parents had larger clutches and a higher feeding rate in the absence of predators than during first breeding attempts and approached both types of predators closer when mobbing. Our results suggest that the trade-off between reproductive investment and risk-taking can change in a long-lived species within a breeding season depending on both prior nest predation and renesting opportunities. These patterns correspond to those in short-lived species, raising the question of whether a within-season shift in reproductive investment trade-offs is independent of lifespan. PMID:25430672

  20. Understory bird communities in Amazonian rainforest fragments: species turnover through 25 years post-isolation in recovering landscapes.

    PubMed

    Stouffer, Philip C; Johnson, Erik I; Bierregaard, Richard O; Lovejoy, Thomas E

    2011-01-01

    Inferences about species loss following habitat conversion are typically drawn from short-term surveys, which cannot reconstruct long-term temporal dynamics of extinction and colonization. A long-term view can be critical, however, to determine the stability of communities within fragments. Likewise, landscape dynamics must be considered, as second growth structure and overall forest cover contribute to processes in fragments. Here we examine bird communities in 11 Amazonian rainforest fragments of 1-100 ha, beginning before the fragments were isolated in the 1980s, and continuing through 2007. Using a method that accounts for imperfect detection, we estimated extinction and colonization based on standardized mist-net surveys within discreet time intervals (1-2 preisolation samples and 4-5 post-isolation samples). Between preisolation and 2007, all fragments lost species in an area-dependent fashion, with loss of as few as <10% of preisolation species from 100-ha fragments, but up to 70% in 1-ha fragments. Analysis of individual time intervals revealed that the 2007 result was not due to gradual species loss beginning at isolation; both extinction and colonization occurred in every time interval. In the last two samples, 2000 and 2007, extinction and colonization were approximately balanced. Further, 97 of 101 species netted before isolation were detected in at least one fragment in 2007. Although a small subset of species is extremely vulnerable to fragmentation, and predictably goes extinct in fragments, developing second growth in the matrix around fragments encourages recolonization in our landscapes. Species richness in these fragments now reflects local turnover, not long-term attrition of species. We expect that similar processes could be operating in other fragmented systems that show unexpectedly low extinction. PMID:21731616

  1. Understory Bird Communities in Amazonian Rainforest Fragments: Species Turnover through 25 Years Post-Isolation in Recovering Landscapes

    PubMed Central

    Stouffer, Philip C.; Johnson, Erik I.; Bierregaard, Richard O.; Lovejoy, Thomas E.

    2011-01-01

    Inferences about species loss following habitat conversion are typically drawn from short-term surveys, which cannot reconstruct long-term temporal dynamics of extinction and colonization. A long-term view can be critical, however, to determine the stability of communities within fragments. Likewise, landscape dynamics must be considered, as second growth structure and overall forest cover contribute to processes in fragments. Here we examine bird communities in 11 Amazonian rainforest fragments of 1–100 ha, beginning before the fragments were isolated in the 1980s, and continuing through 2007. Using a method that accounts for imperfect detection, we estimated extinction and colonization based on standardized mist-net surveys within discreet time intervals (1–2 preisolation samples and 4–5 post-isolation samples). Between preisolation and 2007, all fragments lost species in an area-dependent fashion, with loss of as few as <10% of preisolation species from 100-ha fragments, but up to 70% in 1-ha fragments. Analysis of individual time intervals revealed that the 2007 result was not due to gradual species loss beginning at isolation; both extinction and colonization occurred in every time interval. In the last two samples, 2000 and 2007, extinction and colonization were approximately balanced. Further, 97 of 101 species netted before isolation were detected in at least one fragment in 2007. Although a small subset of species is extremely vulnerable to fragmentation, and predictably goes extinct in fragments, developing second growth in the matrix around fragments encourages recolonization in our landscapes. Species richness in these fragments now reflects local turnover, not long-term attrition of species. We expect that similar processes could be operating in other fragmented systems that show unexpectedly low extinction. PMID:21731616

  2. Prevalence of three campylobacter species, C. jejuni, C. coli, and C. lari, using multilocus sequence typing in wild birds of the Mid-Atlantic region, USA.

    PubMed

    Keller, Judith I; Shriver, W Gregory

    2014-01-01

    Campylobacter jejuni is responsible for the majority of bacterial foodborne gastroenteritis in the US, usually due to the consumption of undercooked poultry. Research on which avian species transmit the bacterium is limited, especially in the US. We sampled wild birds in three families-Anatidae, Scolopacidae, and Laridae-in eastern North America to determine the prevalence and specific strains of Campylobacter. The overall prevalence of Campylobacter spp. was 9.2% for all wild birds sampled (n = 781). Campylobacter jejuni was the most prevalent species (8.1%), while Campylobacter coli and Campylobacter lari prevalence estimates were low (1.4% and 0.3%, respectively). We used multilocus sequence typing PCR specific to C. jejuni to characterize clonal complexes and sequence types isolated from wild bird samples and detected 13 novel sequence types, along with a clonal complex previously only associated with human disease (ST-658). Wild birds share an increasing amount of habitat with humans as more landscapes become fragmented and developed for human needs. Wild birds are and will remain an important aspect of public health due to their ability to carry and disperse emerging zoonotic pathogens or their arthropod vectors. As basic information such as prevalence is limited or lacking from a majority of wild birds in the US, this study provides further insight into Campylobacter epidemiology, host preference, and strain characterization of C. jejuni.

  3. Focal species of birds in European crops for higher tier pesticide risk assessment.

    PubMed

    Dietzen, Christian; Edwards, Peter J; Wolf, Christian; Ludwigs, Jan-Dieter; Luttik, Robert

    2014-04-01

    Focal species have been defined by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) as real species that represent others in a crop resulting from their potential higher level of exposure to pesticides. As such they are the most appropriate species for refining estimates of exposure further, through, for example, radio tracking and dietary studies. Plant protection product manufacturers collectively commissioned many studies in Europe, according to the EFSA guidelines, to identify focal species in different crops that may be used in risk assessments for spray applications of pesticides. Using frequency of occurrence in crops and risk-based criteria for exposure, all studies have been reviewed to identify if possible at least 1 focal species per feeding guild, per crop in the new registration zones for southern and central Europe. Some focal species repeatedly appeared across a wide range of arable or tree crops but not both, demonstrating broad adaptation to these 2 different crop structures. Many have widespread distributions, for example, 15 of the focal species have a distribution covering all agricultural regions of Europe (northern, central, and southern zones). Three species, corn bunting, serin, and tree sparrow, are restricted to the central and southern zones, whereas another 4 species, Sardinian and fan-tailed warbler, and crested and short-toed lark, are essentially restricted to the southern zone. The authors consider the focal species identified as suitable for risk assessment in Europe at the zonal level and for further refinement of exposure through studies, such as radio tracking or diet analysis, if necessary.

  4. A numerical taxonomic study of species of Vibrio isolated from the aquatic environment and birds in Kent, England.

    PubMed

    West, P A; Lee, J V; Bryant, T N

    1983-10-01

    A numerical taxonomic study has been carried out to confirm the identity of strains of the family Vibrionaceae isolated during an ecological study. A total of 237 strains were studied including 148 from the aquatic environment, 6 from estuarine birds, 1 from sheep faeces, and 61 control cultures. Duplicates of 21 of the strains were randomly selected and included to estimate test and operator error. Taxonomic resemblance was estimated on the basis of 148 characters using Euclidean distance. The taxonomic position of some strains was reevaluated using the pattern different coefficient. Strains were clustered by three methods, all of which gave similar results. The estimated average probability of test error was 1.5%. Strains previously identified as Vibrio anguillarum fell into four distinct phenons corresponding to V. anguillarum biovar I, 'V. anguillarum biovar II', V. diazotrophicus, and strains pathogenic to oyster larvae. The latter group characteristically degraded xanthine and probably represents a new species. The phenon corresponding to V. cholerae included the type strain, strains of human origin, and strains isolated in the United Kingdom from birds and the aquatic environment. Some strains of V. cholerae were luminous. Other phenons were identified as V. metschnikovii, V. fluvialis, and Aeromonas spp.

  5. Dramatic niche shifts and morphological change in two insular bird species

    PubMed Central

    Alström, Per; Jønsson, Knud A.; Fjeldså, Jon; Ödeen, Anders; Ericson, Per G. P.; Irestedt, Martin

    2015-01-01

    Colonizations of islands are often associated with rapid morphological divergence. We present two previously unrecognized cases of dramatic morphological change and niche shifts in connection with colonization of tropical forest-covered islands. These evolutionary changes have concealed the fact that the passerine birds madanga, Madanga ruficollis, from Buru, Indonesia, and São Tomé shorttail, Amaurocichla bocagii, from São Tomé, Gulf of Guinea, are forest-adapted members of the family Motacillidae (pipits and wagtails). We show that Madanga has diverged mainly in plumage, which may be the result of selection for improved camouflage in its new arboreal niche, while selection pressures for other morphological changes have probably been weak owing to preadaptations for the novel niche. By contrast, we suggest that Amaurocichla's niche change has led to divergence in both structure and plumage. PMID:26064613

  6. Dramatic niche shifts and morphological change in two insular bird species.

    PubMed

    Alström, Per; Jønsson, Knud A; Fjeldså, Jon; Ödeen, Anders; Ericson, Per G P; Irestedt, Martin

    2015-03-01

    Colonizations of islands are often associated with rapid morphological divergence. We present two previously unrecognized cases of dramatic morphological change and niche shifts in connection with colonization of tropical forest-covered islands. These evolutionary changes have concealed the fact that the passerine birds madanga, Madanga ruficollis, from Buru, Indonesia, and São Tomé shorttail, Amaurocichla bocagii, from São Tomé, Gulf of Guinea, are forest-adapted members of the family Motacillidae (pipits and wagtails). We show that Madanga has diverged mainly in plumage, which may be the result of selection for improved camouflage in its new arboreal niche, while selection pressures for other morphological changes have probably been weak owing to preadaptations for the novel niche. By contrast, we suggest that Amaurocichla's niche change has led to divergence in both structure and plumage. PMID:26064613

  7. What factors drive prolactin and corticosterone responses to stress in a long-lived bird species (snow petrel Pagodroma nivea)?

    PubMed

    Angelier, Frédéric; Moe, Børge; Blanc, Samuel; Chastel, Olivier

    2009-01-01

    Life-history theory predicts that individuals should adapt their parental investment to the costs and benefits of the current reproductive effort. This could be achieved by modulating the hormonal stress response, which may shift energy investment away from reproduction and redirect it toward survival. In birds, this stress response consists of a release of corticosterone that may be accompanied by a decrease in circulating prolactin, a hormone involved in the regulation of parental care. We lack data on the modulation of the prolactin stress response. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that individuals should modulate their prolactin stress response according to the fitness value of the current reproductive effort relative to the fitness value of future reproduction. Specifically, we examined the influence of breeding status (failed breeders vs. incubating birds) and body condition on prolactin and corticosterone stress responses in a long-lived species, the snow petrel Pagodroma nivea. When facing stressors, incubating birds had higher prolactin levels than failed breeders. However, we found no effect of body condition on the prolactin stress response. The corticosterone stress response was modulated according to body condition but was not affected by breeding status. We also performed an experiment using injections of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) and found that the modulation of the corticosterone stress response was probably associated with a reduction in ACTH release by the pituitary and a decrease in adrenal sensitivity to ACTH. In addition, we examined whether prolactin and corticosterone secretion were functionally linked. We found that these two hormonal stress responses were not correlated. Moreover, injection of ACTH did not affect prolactin levels, demonstrating that short-term variations in prolactin levels are not governed directly or indirectly by ACTH release. Thus, we suggest that the corticosterone and prolactin responses to short

  8. Fine-scale kin recognition in the absence of social familiarity in the Siberian jay, a monogamous bird species.

    PubMed

    Griesser, Michael; Halvarsson, Peter; Drobniak, Szymon M; Vilà, Carles

    2015-11-01

    Kin recognition is a critical element to kin cooperation, and in vertebrates, it is primarily based on associative learning. Recognition of socially unfamiliar kin occurs rarely, and it is reported only in vertebrate species where promiscuity prevents recognition of first-order relatives. However, it is unknown whether the recognition of socially unfamiliar kin can evolve in monogamous species. Here, we investigate whether genetic relatedness modulates aggression among group members in Siberian jays (Perisoreus infaustus). This bird species is genetically and socially monogamous and lives in groups that are formed through the retention of offspring beyond independence, and the immigration of socially unfamiliar nonbreeders. Observations on feeders showed that genetic relatedness modulated aggression of breeders towards immigrants in a graded manner, in that they chased most intensely the immigrant group members that were genetically the least related. However, cross-fostering experiments showed that breeders were equally tolerant towards their own and cross-fostered young swapped as nestlings. Thus, breeders seem to use different mechanisms to recognize socially unfamiliar individuals and own offspring. As Siberian jays show a high degree of nepotism during foraging and predator encounters, inclusive fitness benefits may play a role for the evolution of fine-scale kin recognition. More generally, our results suggest that fine-graded kin recognition can evolve independently of social familiarity, highlighting the evolutionary importance of kin recognition for social species. PMID:26460512

  9. Interspecific differences in concentrations and congener profiles of chlorinated and brominated organic pollutants in three insectivorous bird species.

    PubMed

    Dauwe, Tom; Van den Steen, Evi; Jaspers, Veerle L B; Maes, Koen; Covaci, Adrian; Eens, Marcel

    2009-02-01

    We investigated the accumulation of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) and organochlorine pesticides (OCPs) in eggs of three insectivorous bird species, the great tit (Parus major), the Northern lapwing (Vanellus vanellus) and the Mediterranean gull (Larus melanocephalus), near the harbour of Antwerp (Belgium). Our results show that lapwing eggs had the highest median concentrations of PCBs (4358 ng/g lw) and PBDEs (109 ng/g lw). Mediterranean gulls feed during breeding on ground-dwelling invertebrates on agricultural fields, which is reflected in higher OCP concentrations in eggs (1235 ng/g lw). Apart from differences in accumulation, also interspecific differences in contaminant profiles were investigated. Significant differences among species were found in the profile of PCBs, PBDEs and OCPs. These differences could be attributed to differences in diet, behaviour and metabolic capacity. Interestingly, the OCP profile in lapwing eggs deviated extremely from the two other species. In both great tit and Mediterranean gull eggs p,p'-DDE was by far the most important compound, whereas in lapwing eggs hexachlorobenzene, oxychlordane, trans-nonachlor and even p,p'-DDT were relatively more abundant than p,p'-DDE. The high p,p'-DDT/p,p'-DDE ratio has previously been described in lapwings, which suggests that low p,p'-DDE accumulation in eggs might be inherent for this species. PMID:18947874

  10. Spatial scale, abundance and the species-energy relationship in British birds.

    PubMed

    Evans, Karl L; Newson, Stuart E; Storch, David; Greenwood, Jeremy J D; Gaston, Kevin J

    2008-03-01

    1. The spatial scale of analysis may influence the nature, strength and underlying drivers of macroecological patterns, one of the most frequently discussed of which is the relationship between species richness and environmental energy availability. 2. It has been suggested that species-energy relationships are hump-shaped at fine spatial grains and consistently positive at larger regional grains. The exact nature of this scale dependency is, however, the subject of much debate as relatively few studies have investigated species-energy relationships for the same assemblage across a range of spatial grains. Here, we contrast species-energy relationships for the British breeding avifauna at spatial grains of 1 km x 1 km, 2 km x 2 km and 10 km x 10 km plots, while maintaining a constant spatial extent. 3. Analyses were principally conducted using data on observed species richness. While survey work may fail to detect some species, observed species richness and that estimated using nonparametric techniques were strongly positively correlated with each other, and thus exhibit very similar spatial patterns. Moreover, the forms of species-energy relationships using observed and estimated species richness were statistically indistinguishable from each other. 4. Positive decelerating species-energy relationships arise at all three spatial grains. There is little evidence that the explanatory power of these relationships varies with spatial scale. However, ratios of regional (large-scale) to local (small-scale) species richness decrease with increasing energy availability, indicating that local richness responds to energy with a steeper gradient than does regional richness. Local assemblages thus sample a greater proportion of regional richness at higher energy levels, suggesting that spatial turnover of species richness is lower in high-energy regions. Similarly, a crude measure of temporal turnover, the ratio of cumulative species richness over a 4-year period to species

  11. Two species of Synhimantus (dispharynx) railliet, Henry and Sisoff, 1912 (Nematoda: Acuarioidea: Acuariidae), in passerine birds from the Area de Conservacion Guanacaste, Costa Rica.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Luping; Brooks, Daniel R; Causey, Douglas

    2004-10-01

    Members of 2 species of Synhimantus (Dispharynx) live under the lining of the gizzard in passerine birds from the Area de Conservacion Guanacaste, Costa Rica. Synhimantus (Dispharynx) nasuta (Rudolphi, 1819) occurs in Thraupis episcopus, Turdus grayi, Caryothraustes poliogaster, Platyrinchus cancrominus, Ramphocaenus melanurus, Vermivora peregrina, and Geothlypis poliocephala. A single male, in Turdus grayi, apparently representing a new species, distinguishable from all other species of Synhimantus (Dispharynx) by having similar shaped left and right spicules, is described but not named.

  12. Testing for effects of climate change on competitive relationships and coexistence between two bird species.

    PubMed

    Stenseth, Nils Chr; Durant, Joël M; Fowler, Mike S; Matthysen, Erik; Adriaensen, Frank; Jonzén, Niclas; Chan, Kung-Sik; Liu, Hai; De Laet, Jenny; Sheldon, Ben C; Visser, Marcel E; Dhondt, André A

    2015-05-22

    Climate change is expected to have profound ecological effects, yet shifts in competitive abilities among species are rarely studied in this context. Blue tits (Cyanistes caeruleus) and great tits (Parus major) compete for food and roosting sites, yet coexist across much of their range. Climate change might thus change the competitive relationships and coexistence between these two species. Analysing four of the highest-quality, long-term datasets available on these species across Europe, we extend the textbook example of coexistence between competing species to include the dynamic effects of long-term climate variation. Using threshold time-series statistical modelling, we demonstrate that long-term climate variation affects species demography through different influences on density-dependent and density-independent processes. The competitive interaction between blue tits and great tits has shifted in one of the studied sites, creating conditions that alter the relative equilibrium densities between the two species, potentially disrupting long-term coexistence. Our analyses show that long-term climate change can, but does not always, generate local differences in the equilibrium conditions of spatially structured species assemblages. We demonstrate how long-term data can be used to better understand whether (and how), for instance, climate change might change the relationships between coexisting species. However, the studied populations are rather robust against competitive exclusion.

  13. 75 FR 50813 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Listing Three Foreign Bird Species From Latin...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-08-17

    ... FR 26464) for 58 foreign species, noting that 2 of the foreign species identified in the petition were already listed under the Act, and initiated a status review. On January 20, 1984 (49 FR 2485), we..., we published the first annual notice (50 FR 19761), in which we continued to find that listing all...

  14. Genetic data from 28 STR loci for forensic individual identification and parentage analyses in 6 bird of prey species.

    PubMed

    Dawnay, Nick; Ogden, Rob; Wetton, Jon H; Thorpe, Roger S; McEwing, Ross

    2009-03-01

    Twenty-eight STR loci were screened in wild populations of six bird of prey species providing allele frequencies and population genetic parameters necessary for the application of STRs in wildlife forensic genetic casework. Individual STR loci were validated according to forensic recommendations in specimens of golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos), goshawk (Accipiter gentilis), merlin (Falco columbarius), peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus), gyr falcon (Falco rusticolus) and saker falcon (Falco cherrug). Deviations from Hardy-Weinberg expectations and linkage disequilibrium between locus pairs were examined. The average probability of identity (PI(ave)) and power of exclusion (PE) suggest the profiling systems of golden eagle, goshawk, merlin and peregrine falcons are capable of providing robust and highly discriminatory forensic evidence for legal proceedings. Due to low sample numbers the allele frequency data for gyr and saker falcons is not currently capable of providing an effective probability of identity. Further work should focus on increasing the size of these data sets. PMID:19215871

  15. Integration of Genetic and Phenotypic Data in 48 Lineages of Philippine Birds Shows Heterogeneous Divergence Processes and Numerous Cryptic Species.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Kyle K; Braile, Thomas; Winker, Kevin

    2016-01-01

    The Philippine Islands are one of the most biologically diverse archipelagoes in the world. Current taxonomy, however, may underestimate levels of avian diversity and endemism in these islands. Although species limits can be difficult to determine among allopatric populations, quantitative methods for comparing phenotypic and genotypic data can provide useful metrics of divergence among populations and identify those that merit consideration for elevation to full species status. Using a conceptual approach that integrates genetic and phenotypic data, we compared populations among 48 species, estimating genetic divergence (p-distance) using the mtDNA marker ND2 and comparing plumage and morphometrics of museum study skins. Using conservative speciation thresholds, pairwise comparisons of genetic and phenotypic divergence suggested possible species-level divergences in more than half of the species studied (25 out of 48). In speciation process space, divergence routes were heterogeneous among taxa. Nearly all populations that surpassed high genotypic divergence thresholds were Passeriformes, and non-Passeriformes populations surpassed high phenotypic divergence thresholds more commonly than expected by chance. Overall, there was an apparent logarithmic increase in phenotypic divergence with respect to genetic divergence, suggesting the possibility that divergence among these lineages may initially be driven by divergent selection in this allopatric system. Also, genetic endemism was high among sampled islands. Higher taxonomy affected divergence in genotype and phenotype. Although broader lineage, genetic, phenotypic, and numeric sampling is needed to further explore heterogeneity among divergence processes and to accurately assess species-level diversity in these taxa, our results support the need for substantial taxonomic revisions among Philippine birds. The conservation implications are profound.

  16. Integration of Genetic and Phenotypic Data in 48 Lineages of Philippine Birds Shows Heterogeneous Divergence Processes and Numerous Cryptic Species

    PubMed Central

    Campbell, Kyle K.; Braile, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    The Philippine Islands are one of the most biologically diverse archipelagoes in the world. Current taxonomy, however, may underestimate levels of avian diversity and endemism in these islands. Although species limits can be difficult to determine among allopatric populations, quantitative methods for comparing phenotypic and genotypic data can provide useful metrics of divergence among populations and identify those that merit consideration for elevation to full species status. Using a conceptual approach that integrates genetic and phenotypic data, we compared populations among 48 species, estimating genetic divergence (p-distance) using the mtDNA marker ND2 and comparing plumage and morphometrics of museum study skins. Using conservative speciation thresholds, pairwise comparisons of genetic and phenotypic divergence suggested possible species-level divergences in more than half of the species studied (25 out of 48). In speciation process space, divergence routes were heterogeneous among taxa. Nearly all populations that surpassed high genotypic divergence thresholds were Passeriformes, and non-Passeriformes populations surpassed high phenotypic divergence thresholds more commonly than expected by chance. Overall, there was an apparent logarithmic increase in phenotypic divergence with respect to genetic divergence, suggesting the possibility that divergence among these lineages may initially be driven by divergent selection in this allopatric system. Also, genetic endemism was high among sampled islands. Higher taxonomy affected divergence in genotype and phenotype. Although broader lineage, genetic, phenotypic, and numeric sampling is needed to further explore heterogeneity among divergence processes and to accurately assess species-level diversity in these taxa, our results support the need for substantial taxonomic revisions among Philippine birds. The conservation implications are profound. PMID:27442510

  17. Integration of Genetic and Phenotypic Data in 48 Lineages of Philippine Birds Shows Heterogeneous Divergence Processes and Numerous Cryptic Species.

    PubMed

    Campbell, Kyle K; Braile, Thomas; Winker, Kevin

    2016-01-01

    The Philippine Islands are one of the most biologically diverse archipelagoes in the world. Current taxonomy, however, may underestimate levels of avian diversity and endemism in these islands. Although species limits can be difficult to determine among allopatric populations, quantitative methods for comparing phenotypic and genotypic data can provide useful metrics of divergence among populations and identify those that merit consideration for elevation to full species status. Using a conceptual approach that integrates genetic and phenotypic data, we compared populations among 48 species, estimating genetic divergence (p-distance) using the mtDNA marker ND2 and comparing plumage and morphometrics of museum study skins. Using conservative speciation thresholds, pairwise comparisons of genetic and phenotypic divergence suggested possible species-level divergences in more than half of the species studied (25 out of 48). In speciation process space, divergence routes were heterogeneous among taxa. Nearly all populations that surpassed high genotypic divergence thresholds were Passeriformes, and non-Passeriformes populations surpassed high phenotypic divergence thresholds more commonly than expected by chance. Overall, there was an apparent logarithmic increase in phenotypic divergence with respect to genetic divergence, suggesting the possibility that divergence among these lineages may initially be driven by divergent selection in this allopatric system. Also, genetic endemism was high among sampled islands. Higher taxonomy affected divergence in genotype and phenotype. Although broader lineage, genetic, phenotypic, and numeric sampling is needed to further explore heterogeneity among divergence processes and to accurately assess species-level diversity in these taxa, our results support the need for substantial taxonomic revisions among Philippine birds. The conservation implications are profound. PMID:27442510

  18. Clade extinction appears to balance species diversification in sister lineages of Afro-Oriental passerine birds.

    PubMed

    Ricklefs, Robert E; Jønsson, Knud A

    2014-08-12

    Recent analyses suggest that the number of species in a clade often increases rapidly at first, but that diversification subsequently slows, apparently as species fill ecological space. Support for diversity dependence comes largely from the failure of species richness to increase with clade age in some analyses of contemporary diversity. However, clades chosen for analysis generally are named taxa and thus are not selected at random. To avoid this potential bias, we analyzed the numbers of species and estimated ages of 150 pairs of sister clades established by dispersal of ancestral species between the Oriental and African biogeographic regions. The observed positive exponential relationship between clade size and age suggests that species diversify within clades without apparent limit. If this were true, the pattern of accumulation of sister-clade pairs with increasing age would be consistent with the random decline and extinction of entire clades, maintaining an overall balance in species richness. This "pulse" model of diversification is consistent with the fossil record of most groups and reconciles conflicting evidence concerning diversity dependence of clade growth.

  19. Clade extinction appears to balance species diversification in sister lineages of Afro-Oriental passerine birds.

    PubMed

    Ricklefs, Robert E; Jønsson, Knud A

    2014-08-12

    Recent analyses suggest that the number of species in a clade often increases rapidly at first, but that diversification subsequently slows, apparently as species fill ecological space. Support for diversity dependence comes largely from the failure of species richness to increase with clade age in some analyses of contemporary diversity. However, clades chosen for analysis generally are named taxa and thus are not selected at random. To avoid this potential bias, we analyzed the numbers of species and estimated ages of 150 pairs of sister clades established by dispersal of ancestral species between the Oriental and African biogeographic regions. The observed positive exponential relationship between clade size and age suggests that species diversify within clades without apparent limit. If this were true, the pattern of accumulation of sister-clade pairs with increasing age would be consistent with the random decline and extinction of entire clades, maintaining an overall balance in species richness. This "pulse" model of diversification is consistent with the fossil record of most groups and reconciles conflicting evidence concerning diversity dependence of clade growth. PMID:25071202

  20. Species distribution models as a tool to estimate reproductive parameters: a case study with a passerine bird species.

    PubMed

    Brambilla, Mattia; Ficetola, Gentile F

    2012-07-01

    1. Correlative species distribution models (SDMs) assess relationships between species distribution data and environmental features, to evaluate the environmental suitability (ES) of a given area for a species, by providing a measure of the probability of presence. If the output of SDMs represents the relationships between habitat features and species performance well, SDM results can be related also to other key parameters of populations, including reproductive parameters. To test this hypothesis, we evaluated whether SDM results can be used as a proxy of reproductive parameters (breeding output, territory size) in red-backed shrikes (Lanius collurio). 2. The distribution of 726 shrike territories in Northern Italy was obtained through multiple focused surveys; for a subset of pairs, we also measured territory area and number of fledged juveniles. We used Maximum Entropy modelling to build a SDM on the basis of territory distribution. We used generalized least squares and spatial generalized mixed models to relate territory size and number of fledged juveniles to SDM suitability, while controlling for spatial autocorrelation. 3. Species distribution models predicted shrike distribution very well. Territory size was negatively related to suitability estimated through SDM, while the number of fledglings significantly increased with the suitability of the territory. This was true also when SDM was built using only spatially and temporally independent data. 4. Results show a clear relationship between ES estimated through presence-only SDMs and two key parameters related to species' reproduction, suggesting that suitability estimated by SDM, and habitat quality determining reproduction parameters in our model system, are correlated. Our study shows the potential use of SDMs to infer important fitness parameters; this information can have great importance in management and conservation.

  1. Two sympatric species of passerine birds imitate the same raptor calls in alarm contexts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ratnayake, Chaminda P.; Goodale, Eben; Kotagama, Sarath W.

    2010-01-01

    While some avian mimics appear to select sounds randomly, other species preferentially imitate sounds such as predator calls that are associated with danger. Previous work has shown that the Greater Racket-tailed Drongo ( Dicrurus paradiseus) incorporates predator calls and heterospecific alarm calls into its own species-typical alarm vocalizations. Here, we show that another passerine species, the Sri Lanka Magpie ( Urocissa ornata), which inhabits the same Sri Lankan rainforest, imitates three of the same predator calls that drongos do. For two of these call types, there is evidence that magpies also use them in alarm contexts. Our results support the hypothesis that imitated predator calls can serve as signals of alarm to multiple species.

  2. Biochemical characterization of lysozymes present in egg white of selected species of anatid birds.

    PubMed

    D'Surney, S J; deKloet, S R

    1985-01-01

    The isolation of lysozyme from the egg white of several representative species of waterfowl is described. The purified lysozymes were analyzed to determine the type and molecular weight of each enzyme. All enzymes found in duck egg whites were found to be of the c-type. In contrast all true geese, and the mute swan species as well as the northern blackneck screamer contain lysozyme g in their egg white. PMID:4042624

  3. Sex-dependent species discrimination in auditory forebrain of naturally hybridizing birds.

    PubMed

    Gee, Jennifer M; Tomaszycki, Michelle L; Adkins-Regan, Elizabeth

    2009-01-01

    Pairs of individuals breed together only if they recognize each other as the same species, but the process of recognizing conspecifics can depend on flexible criteria even when species-specific signals are innate and fixed. This study examines species recognition in naturally hybridizing sister species, California and Gambel's quail (Callipepla californica and Callipepla gambelii), that have vocalizations which are not learned. Specifically, this study tests whether being raised in a vocalizing mixed-species cohort affects neural activity in the adult auditory forebrain in response to heterospecific and conspecific calls. After hatching, quail chicks were raised either with their own kind or with both species. Once reaching reproductive condition, each adult was played a recording that was one of three types: Gambel's quail opposite-sex contact calls; California quail opposite-sex contact calls; or synthetic tones. Brains were collected following playback and assessed for neuronal activity by quantifying expression of the protein of the immediate early gene, ZENK, in two brain regions, the caudomedial nidopallium (NCM) and the caudomedial mesopallium (CMM). ZENK levels were greater in NCM of males than females, but female NCM cells responded differentially to conspecific compared to heterospecific calls. Namely, females had more immuno-positive NCM cells when they heard conspecific calls rather than heterospecific male calls. Early experience with heterospecific broodmates did not alter neural responses in the NCM or CMM to heterospecific vocalizations. This study suggests that the NCM plays a role in species discrimination but that rearing condition does not alter the response in these non-vocal-learning species. PMID:19996584

  4. Sex-Dependent Species Discrimination in Auditory Forebrain of Naturally Hybridizing Birds

    PubMed Central

    Gee, Jennifer M.; Tomaszycki, Michelle L.; Adkins-Regan, Elizabeth

    2010-01-01

    Pairs of individuals breed together only if they recognize each other as the same species, but the process of recognizing conspecifics can depend on flexible criteria even when species-specific signals are innate and fixed. This study examines species recognition in naturally hybridizing sister species, California and Gambel's quail (Callipepla californica and Callipepla gambelii), that have vocalizations which are not learned. Specifically, this study tests whether being raised in a vocalizing mixed-species cohort affects neural activity in the adult auditory forebrain in response to heterospecific and conspecific calls. After hatching, quail chicks were raised either with their own kind or with both species. Once reaching reproductive condition, each adult was played a recording that was one of three types: Gambel's quail opposite-sex contact calls; California quail opposite-sex contact calls; or synthetic tones. Brains were collected following playback and assessed for neuronal activity by quantifying expression of the protein of the immediate early gene, ZENK, in two brain regions, the caudomedial nidopallium (NCM) and the caudomedial mesopallium (CMM). ZENK levels were greater in NCM of males than females, but female NCM cells responded differentially to conspecific compared to heterospecific calls. Namely, females had more immuno-positive NCM cells when they heard conspecific calls rather than heterospecific male calls. Early experience with heterospecific broodmates did not alter neural responses in the NCM or CMM to heterospecific vocalizations. This study suggests that the NCM plays a role in species discrimination but that rearing condition does not alter the response in these non-vocal-learning species. PMID:19996584

  5. The Bird.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hannon, Jean

    2001-01-01

    Students use a dead bird to learn about bird life, anatomy, and death. Students examine a bird body and discuss what happened to the bird. Uses outdoor education as a resource for learning about animals. (SAH)

  6. Experimental infection of different species of birds with pigeon paramyxovirus type 1 virus--evaluation of clinical outcomes, viral shedding, and distribution in tissues.

    PubMed

    Śmietanka, Krzysztof; Olszewska, Monika; Domańska-Blicharz, Katarzyna; Bocian, A Lukasz; Minta, Zenon

    2014-12-01

    The virulence of pigeon paramyxovirus type 1 (PPMV-1) for different species of birds was investigated in two independent sets of experiments in which groups of pigeons, chickens, turkeys, quails, and geese (10 birds per group) were inoculated with 10(6) median embryo infectious doses of PPMV-1 isolate: 1) nonpassaged (nPPMV-1, intracerebral pathogenicity [ICPI] value = 1.27) and 2) after six passages in specific-pathogen-free chickens (pPPMV-1, ICPI = 1.46) via the oculonasal route. Naive birds were placed in contact with infected birds (two birds per group) to monitor virus transmission. Clinical observation was performed daily. Additionally, cloacal swabs, oropharyngeal swabs, and selected organ samples were collected on days 2, 4, 7, 10, and 14 postinfection and tested by real-time reverse transcriptase-PCR for estimation of viral shedding and distribution in tissues. Infected pigeons exhibited nervous and digestive tract symptoms, mortality, shedding, and transmission to contact birds. Chickens, turkeys, quails, and geese did not exhibit any clinical signs regardless of the PPMV-1 strain used for inoculation. However, in contrast to quails and geese, chickens and turkeys shed the virus via the oral cavity and cloaca, and transmission to contact birds was also observed. Viral RNA was identified in tissues collected from all pPPMV-1-infected birds, whereas negative results were obtained in the case of tissues taken from nPPMV-1-infected quails and geese. We conclude that the PPMV-1 used in this study was most virulent to pigeons, followed by chickens and turkeys, while quails and geese seem to have the highest level of innate resistance to this strain. However, passaging of PPMV-1 in chickens resulted in the increase of ICPI and noticeable but sometimes contrasting changes in the replication capacities of the virus.

  7. Genetic depletion at adaptive but not neutral loci in an endangered bird species.

    PubMed

    Hartmann, Stefanie A; Schaefer, H Martin; Segelbacher, Gernot

    2014-12-01

    Many endangered species suffer from the loss of genetic diversity, but some populations may be able to thrive even if genetically depleted. To investigate the underlying genetic processes of population bottlenecks, we apply an innovative approach for assessing genetic diversity in the last known population of the endangered Pale-headed Brushfinch (Atlapetes pallidiceps) in Ecuador. First, we measure genetic diversity at eleven neutral microsatellite loci and adaptive SNP variation in five Toll-like receptor (TLR) immune system genes. Bottleneck tests confirm genetic drift as the main force shaping genetic diversity in this species and indicate a 99 % reduction in population size dating back several hundred years. Second, we compare contemporary microsatellite diversity with historic museum samples of A. pallidiceps, finding no change in genetic diversity. Third, we compare genetic diversity in the Pale-headed Brushfinch with two co-occurring-related brushfinch species (Atlapetes latinuchus, Buarremon torquatus), finding a reduction of up to 91% diversity in the immune system genes but not in microsatellites. High TLR diversity is linked to decreased survival probabilities in A. pallidiceps. Low TLR diversity is thus probably an adaptation to the specific selection regime within its currently very restricted distribution (approximately 200 ha), but could severely restrict the adaptive potential of the species in the long run. Our study illustrates the importance of investigating both neutral and adaptive markers to assess the effect of population bottlenecks and for recommending specific management plans in endangered species.

  8. Two new Trypanosoma species from African birds, with notes on the taxonomy of avian trypanosomes.

    PubMed

    Valkiūnas, Gediminas; Iezhova, Tatjana A; Carlson, Jenny S; Sehgal, Ravinder N M

    2011-10-01

    Trypanosoma anguiformis n. sp. and Trypanosoma polygranularis n. sp. are described from the African olive sunbird, Cyanomitra olivacea, and Latham's forest francolin, Francolinus lathami, respectively, based on the morphology of their hematozoic trypomastigotes and partial sequences of the small subunit ribosomal RNA gene. Both new species belong to the group of small non-striated avian trypanosomes (<30 µm in length on average) with the kinetoplast situated close to the posterior end of the body. Trypanosoma anguiformis can be readily distinguished from other small avian trypanosomes due to its markedly attenuated (snake-shaped) form of the hematozoic trypomastigotes and the dumbbell-shaped nucleus of the parasite. Trypanosoma polygranularis is readily distinguishable due to the markedly off-center (anteriorly) located nucleus, numerous azurophilic granules that are arranged in a line following the undulating membrane, and the large kinetoplast (with an area up to 1.7 µm(2) [1.1 µm(2) on average]). Illustrations of hematozoic trypomastigotes of the new species are given, and DNA lineages associated with these parasites are reported. The current situation in species taxonomy of avian trypanosomes is discussed. We call for the redescription of valid species of avian trypanosomes from their type vertebrate hosts and type localities by using morphological and polymerase chain reaction-based techniques as an initial essential step towards revising the species composition of avian trypanosomes and reconstructing the taxonomy of these organisms.

  9. Experimental test of postfire management in pine forests: impact of salvage logging versus partial cutting and nonintervention on bird-species assemblages.

    PubMed

    Castro, Jorge; Moreno-Rueda, Gregorio; Hódar, José A

    2010-06-01

    There is an intense debate about the effects of postfire salvage logging versus nonintervention policies on regeneration of forest communities, but scant information from experimental studies is available. We manipulated a burned forest area on a Mediterranean mountain to experimentally analyze the effect of salvage logging on bird-species abundance, diversity, and assemblage composition. We used a randomized block design with three plots of approximately 25 ha each, established along an elevational gradient in a recently burned area in Sierra Nevada Natural and National Park (southeastern Spain). Three replicates of three treatments differing in postfire burned wood management were established per plot: salvage logging, nonintervention, and an intermediate degree of intervention (felling and lopping most of the trees but leaving all the biomass). Starting 1 year after the fire, we used point sampling to monitor bird abundance in each treatment for 2 consecutive years during the breeding and winter seasons (720 censuses total). Postfire burned-wood management altered species assemblages. Salvage logged areas had species typical of open- and early-successional habitats. Bird species that inhabit forests were still present in the unsalvaged treatments even though trees were burned, but were almost absent in salvage-logged areas. Indeed, the main dispersers of mid- and late-successional shrubs and trees, such as thrushes (Turdus spp.) and the European Jay (Garrulus glandarius) were almost restricted to unsalvaged treatments. Salvage logging might thus hamper the natural regeneration of the forest through its impact on assemblages of bird species. Moreover, salvage logging reduced species abundance by 50% and richness by 40%, approximately. The highest diversity at the landscape level (gamma diversity) resulted from a combination of all treatments. Salvage logging may be positive for bird conservation if combined in a mosaic with other, less-aggressive postfire

  10. Simultaneous positive and negative density-dependent dispersal in a colonial bird species.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sin-Yeon; Torres, Roxana; Drummond, Hugh

    2009-01-01

    Contradictory patterns of density-dependent animal dispersal can potentially be reconciled by integrating the conspecific attraction hypothesis with the traditional competition hypothesis. We propose a hypothesis that predicts a U-shaped relationship between density and both natal and breeding dispersal distance. Using 10 years of observations on a breeding colony of the Blue-footed Booby (Sula nebouxii), the hypothesis was confirmed by documenting simultaneous positive and negative density-dependent dispersal distances in natal and breeding dispersal of males and breeding dispersal of females within the colony. Point-pattern analyses demonstrated that the breeding sites of Blue-footed Boobies were highly aggregated in all years within a large study area, and aggregation presumably resulted in heterogeneity in patch density throughout the colony. As predicted, at moderate to high densities, dispersal distances showed positive density dependence, with individuals moving to lower density patches. In contrast, at low to moderate densities, dispersal distances showed negative density dependence, with individuals moving to higher density patches. In both sexes of the 1994 cohort, the higher the mean density in patches used by an individual over the long term (up to age 11 years), the fewer fledglings it produced. A positive effect of density on long-term reproductive success was not detected, possibly because birds that failed during pair formation or incubation were not sampled. Density of conspecifics may be an important influence on habitat selection of breeders, and dispersal may tend to carry individuals to patches where pair formation opportunities are better and negative effects of competition on reproductive success are reduced.

  11. Simultaneous positive and negative density-dependent dispersal in a colonial bird species.

    PubMed

    Kim, Sin-Yeon; Torres, Roxana; Drummond, Hugh

    2009-01-01

    Contradictory patterns of density-dependent animal dispersal can potentially be reconciled by integrating the conspecific attraction hypothesis with the traditional competition hypothesis. We propose a hypothesis that predicts a U-shaped relationship between density and both natal and breeding dispersal distance. Using 10 years of observations on a breeding colony of the Blue-footed Booby (Sula nebouxii), the hypothesis was confirmed by documenting simultaneous positive and negative density-dependent dispersal distances in natal and breeding dispersal of males and breeding dispersal of females within the colony. Point-pattern analyses demonstrated that the breeding sites of Blue-footed Boobies were highly aggregated in all years within a large study area, and aggregation presumably resulted in heterogeneity in patch density throughout the colony. As predicted, at moderate to high densities, dispersal distances showed positive density dependence, with individuals moving to lower density patches. In contrast, at low to moderate densities, dispersal distances showed negative density dependence, with individuals moving to higher density patches. In both sexes of the 1994 cohort, the higher the mean density in patches used by an individual over the long term (up to age 11 years), the fewer fledglings it produced. A positive effect of density on long-term reproductive success was not detected, possibly because birds that failed during pair formation or incubation were not sampled. Density of conspecifics may be an important influence on habitat selection of breeders, and dispersal may tend to carry individuals to patches where pair formation opportunities are better and negative effects of competition on reproductive success are reduced. PMID:19294928

  12. Species-specific differences in relative eye size are related to patterns of edge avoidance in an Amazonian rainforest bird community

    PubMed Central

    Martínez-Ortega, Cristina; Santos, Eduardo SA; Gil, Diego

    2014-01-01

    Eye size shows a large degree of variation among species, even after correcting for body size. In birds, relatively larger eyes have been linked to predation risk, capture of mobile prey, and nocturnal habits. Relatively larger eyes enhance visual acuity and also allow birds to forage and communicate in low-light situations. Complex habitats such as tropical rain forests provide a mosaic of diverse lighting conditions, including differences among forest strata and at different distances from the forest edge. We examined in an Amazonian forest bird community whether microhabitat occupancy (defined by edge avoidance and forest stratum) was a predictor of relative eye size. We found that relative eye size increased with edge avoidance, but did not differ according to forest stratum. Nevertheless, the relationship between edge avoidance and relative eye size showed a nonsignificant positive trend for species that inhabit lower forest strata. Our analysis shows that birds that avoid forest edges have larger eyes than those living in lighter parts. We expect that this adaptation may allow birds to increase their active daily period in dim areas of the forest. The pattern that we found raises the question of what factors may limit the evolution of large eyes. PMID:25614788

  13. Morphometric analysis of telencephalic structure in a variety of neognath and paleognath bird species reveals regional differences associated with specific behavioral traits.

    PubMed

    Corfield, Jeremy R; Wild, J Martin; Parsons, Stuart; Kubke, M Fabiana

    2012-01-01

    Birds exhibit a huge array of behavior, ecology and physiology, and occupy nearly every environment on earth, ranging from the desert outback of Australia to the tropical rain forests of Panama. Some birds have adopted a fully nocturnal lifestyle, such as the barn owl and kiwi, while others, such as the albatross, spend nearly their entire life flying over the ocean. Each species has evolved unique adaptations over millions of years to function in their respective niche. In order to increase processing power or network efficiency, many of these adaptations require enlargements and/or specializations of the brain as a whole or of specific brain regions. In this study, we examine the relative size and morphology of 9 telencephalic regions in a number of Paleognath and Neognath birds and relate the findings to differences in behavior and sensory ecology. We pay particular attention to those species that have undergone a relative enlargement of the telencephalon to determine whether this relative increase in telencephalic size is homogeneous across different brain regions or whether particular regions have become differentially enlarged. The analysis indicates that changes in the relative size of telencephalic regions are not homogeneous, with every species showing hypertrophy or hypotrophy of at least one of them. The three-dimensional structure of these regions in different species was also variable, in particular that of the mesopallium in kiwi. The findings from this study provide further evidence that the changes in relative brain size in birds reflect a process of mosaic evolution. PMID:22890218

  14. Masked auditory thresholds in three species of birds, as measured by the auditory brainstem response (L).

    PubMed

    Noirot, Isabelle C; Brittan-Powell, Elizabeth F; Dooling, Robert J

    2011-06-01

    Auditory brainstem responses (ABRs) were recorded in adult budgerigars, canaries, and zebra finches in quiet and in three levels of white noise for tone stimuli between 1 and 4 kHz. Similar to behavioral results, masked ABR thresholds increased linearly with increasing noise levels. When the three species are considered together, ABR-derived CRs were higher than behavioral CRs by 18-23 dB between 2 and 4 kHz and by about 30 dB at 1 kHz. This study clarifies the utility of using ABRs for estimating masked auditory thresholds in natural environmental noises in species that cannot be tested behaviorally. PMID:21682367

  15. Estimates of dietary overlap for six species of Amazonian manakin birds using stable isotopes.

    PubMed

    Fair, Jeanne M; Ryder, Thomas B; Loiselle, Bette A; Blake, John G; Larson, Toti E; Davis, Paul; Syme, James; Perkins, George B; Heikoop, Jeffrey M

    2013-01-01

    We used stable isotope ratios to determine the metabolic routing fraction of carbon and nitrogen in feathers in addition to faecal analysis to estimate diet overlap of six sympatric species of manakins in the eastern lowland forest of Ecuador. Collectively, all species varied from-23.7 to-32.7 ‰ for δ(13)C, and from 6.0 to 9.9‰ for δ(15)N, with Machaeropterus regulus showing isotopic differences from the other species. We developed a mixing model that explicitly addresses the routing of carbon and nitrogen to feathers. Interestingly, these results suggest a higher proportion of nitrogen and carbon derived from insects than anticipated based on feeding observations and faecal analysis. A concentration-dependent mixing isotopic model was also used to look at dietary proportions. While larvae and arachnids had higher δ(15)N values, these two groups may also be preferred prey of manakins and may be more assimilated into tissues, leading to a potential overestimation of the contribution to diet. This study supports the finding that manakin species, previously thought be primarily frugivorous, contain a significant amount of arthropods in their diet. PMID:23781884

  16. Long-term population dynamics of breeding bird species in the German Wadden Sea area

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vauk, Gottfried; Prüter, Johannes; Hartwig, Eike

    1989-09-01

    For no other group of organisms in coastal areas are there so exact and long-term data available as there are for seabirds. Since the beginning of the 20th century, documentation of population size, especially for species breeding in colonies from the groups gulls, terns and auks, is almost complete. These species act as bio-indicators, and data on fluctuations in their population size are useful as they reflect changes in the state of the marine ecosystem. The population development of some of these seabird species (Herring Gull, Guillemot, Common, Arctic and Sandwich Tern) from the German North Sea coast, which primarily feed on fish, is given. Common to all these species is an exponential increase in numbers in recent years (1970 1985). Possible causes for this development, e.g. pressure from enemies or competitors, availability of breeding places, anthropogenic stress and mortality factors, as well as the direct and indirect anthropogenic-influenced changes in the trophic system due to the increasing eutrophication of coastal waters, are evaluated. Signs of a collapse in the stocks of seabrids resulting from environmental pollution are discussed. Consequences resulting from the ecosystem changes, such as reduction of nutrient discharge into the North Sea and the expansion of biological monitoring, are described.

  17. 75 FR 81793 - Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Listing Seven Brazilian Bird Species as Endangered...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-12-28

    ... INFORMATION: Background On August 12, 2009, we published a proposed rule (74 FR 154) to list the following... petition, we published a substantial 90-day finding on May 12, 1981 (46 FR 26464), for 58 foreign species and initiated a status review. On January 20, 1984 (49 FR 2485), we published a 12-month...

  18. Flying with the birds? Recent large-area dispersal of four Australian Limnadopsis species (Crustacea: Branchiopoda: Spinicaudata)

    PubMed Central

    Schwentner, Martin; Timms, Brian V; Richter, Stefan

    2012-01-01

    Temporary water bodies are important freshwater habitats in the arid zone of Australia. They harbor a distinct fauna and provide important feeding and breeding grounds for water birds. This paper assesses, on the basis of haplotype networks, analyses of molecular variation and relaxed molecular clock divergence time estimates, the phylogeographic history, and population structure of four common temporary water species of the Australian endemic clam shrimp taxon Limnadopsis in eastern and central Australia (an area of >1,350,000 km2). Mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I sequences of 413 individuals and a subset of 63 nuclear internal transcribed spacer 2 sequences were analyzed. Genetic differentiation was observed between populations inhabiting southeastern and central Australia and those inhabiting the northern Lake Eyre Basin and Western Australia. However, over large parts of the study area and across river drainage systems in southeastern and central Australia (the Murray–Darling Basin, Bulloo River, and southern Lake Eyre Basin), no evidence of population subdivision was observed in any of the four Limnadopsis species. This indicates recent gene flow across an area of ∼800,000 km2. This finding contrasts with patterns observed in other Australian arid zone taxa, particularly freshwater species, whose populations are often structured according to drainage systems. The lack of genetic differentiation within the area in question may be linked to the huge number of highly nomadic water birds that potentially disperse the resting eggs of Limnadopsis among temporary water bodies. Genetically undifferentiated populations on a large geographic scale contrast starkly with findings for many other large branchiopods in other parts of the world, where pronounced genetic structure is often observed even in populations inhabiting pools separated by a few kilometers. Due to its divergent genetic lineages (up to 5.6% uncorrected p-distance) and the relaxed

  19. Organochlorine residue levels in livers of birds of prey from Spain: inter-species comparison in relation with diet and migratory patterns.

    PubMed

    van Drooge, Barend; Mateo, Rafael; Vives, Ingrid; Cardiel, Iris; Guitart, Raimon

    2008-05-01

    Livers from 130 specimens corresponding to 18