Science.gov

Sample records for agriculturally important species

  1. Biodiversity of Aspergillus species in some important agricultural products.

    PubMed

    Perrone, G; Susca, A; Cozzi, G; Ehrlich, K; Varga, J; Frisvad, J C; Meijer, M; Noonim, P; Mahakarnchanakul, W; Samson, R A

    2007-01-01

    The genus Aspergillus is one of the most important filamentous fungal genera. Aspergillus species are used in the fermentation industry, but they are also responsible of various plant and food secondary rot, with the consequence of possible accumulation of mycotoxins. The aflatoxin producing A. flavus and A. parasiticus, and ochratoxinogenic A. niger, A. ochraceus and A. carbonarius species are frequently encountered in agricultural products. Studies on the biodiversity of toxigenic Aspergillus species is useful to clarify molecular, ecological and biochemical characteristics of the different species in relation to their different adaptation to environmental and geographical conditions, and to their potential toxigenicity. Here we analyzed the biodiversity of ochratoxin producing species occurring on two important crops: grapes and coffee, and the genetic diversity of A. flavus populations occurring in agricultural fields. Altogether nine different black Aspergillus species can be found on grapes which are often difficult to identify with classical methods. The polyphasic approach used in our studies led to the identification of three new species occurring on grapes: A. brasiliensis, A. ibericus, and A. uvarum. Similar studies on the Aspergillus species occurring on coffee beans have evidenced in the last five years that A. carbonarius is an important source of ochratoxin A in coffee. Four new species within the black aspergilli were also identified in coffee beans: A. sclerotioniger, A. lacticoffeatus, A. sclerotiicarbonarius, and A. aculeatinus. The genetic diversity within A. flavus populations has been widely studied in relation to their potential aflatoxigenicity and morphological variants L- and S-strains. Within A. flavus and other Aspergillus species capable of aflatoxin production, considerable diversity is found. We summarise the main recent achievements in the diversity of the aflatoxin gene cluster in A. flavus populations, A. parasiticus and the non

  2. Biodiversity of Aspergillus Species in Some Important Agricultural Products

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The genus Aspergillus is one of the most important filamentous fungal genera. Aspergillus species are used in the fermentation industry, but they are also responsible of various plant and food secondary rot, with the consequence of possible accumulation of mycotoxins. The aflatoxin-producing A. fl...

  3. The Importance of Landscape Elements for Bat Activity and Species Richness in Agricultural Areas

    PubMed Central

    Heim, Olga; Treitler, Julia T.; Tschapka, Marco; Knörnschild, Mirjam; Jung, Kirsten

    2015-01-01

    Landscape heterogeneity is regarded as a key factor for maintaining biodiversity and ecosystem function in production landscapes. We investigated whether grassland sites at close vicinity to forested areas are more frequently used by bats. Considering that bats are important consumers of herbivorous insects, including agricultural pest, this is important for sustainable land management. Bat activity and species richness were assessed using repeated monitoring from May to September in 2010 with acoustic monitoring surveys on 50 grassland sites in the Biosphere Reserve Schorfheide-Chorin (North-East Germany). Using spatial analysis (GIS), we measured the closest distance of each grassland site to potentially connecting landscape elements (e.g., trees, linear vegetation, groves, running and standing water). In addition, we assessed the distance to and the percent land cover of forest remnants and urban areas in a 200 m buffer around the recording sites to address differences in the local landscape setting. Species richness and bat activity increased significantly with higher forest land cover in the 200 m buffer and at smaller distance to forested areas. Moreover, species richness increased in proximity to tree groves. Larger amount of forest land cover and smaller distance to forest also resulted in a higher activity of bats on grassland sites in the beginning of the year during May, June and July. Landscape elements near grassland sites also influenced species composition of bats and species richness of functional groups (open, edge and narrow space foragers). Our results highlight the importance of forested areas, and suggest that agricultural grasslands that are closer to forest remnants might be better buffered against outbreaks of agricultural pest insects due to higher species richness and higher bat activity. Furthermore, our data reveals that even for highly mobile species such as bats, a very dense network of connecting elements within the landscape is

  4. The Importance of Landscape Elements for Bat Activity and Species Richness in Agricultural Areas.

    PubMed

    Heim, Olga; Treitler, Julia T; Tschapka, Marco; Knörnschild, Mirjam; Jung, Kirsten

    2015-01-01

    Landscape heterogeneity is regarded as a key factor for maintaining biodiversity and ecosystem function in production landscapes. We investigated whether grassland sites at close vicinity to forested areas are more frequently used by bats. Considering that bats are important consumers of herbivorous insects, including agricultural pest, this is important for sustainable land management. Bat activity and species richness were assessed using repeated monitoring from May to September in 2010 with acoustic monitoring surveys on 50 grassland sites in the Biosphere Reserve Schorfheide-Chorin (North-East Germany). Using spatial analysis (GIS), we measured the closest distance of each grassland site to potentially connecting landscape elements (e.g., trees, linear vegetation, groves, running and standing water). In addition, we assessed the distance to and the percent land cover of forest remnants and urban areas in a 200 m buffer around the recording sites to address differences in the local landscape setting. Species richness and bat activity increased significantly with higher forest land cover in the 200 m buffer and at smaller distance to forested areas. Moreover, species richness increased in proximity to tree groves. Larger amount of forest land cover and smaller distance to forest also resulted in a higher activity of bats on grassland sites in the beginning of the year during May, June and July. Landscape elements near grassland sites also influenced species composition of bats and species richness of functional groups (open, edge and narrow space foragers). Our results highlight the importance of forested areas, and suggest that agricultural grasslands that are closer to forest remnants might be better buffered against outbreaks of agricultural pest insects due to higher species richness and higher bat activity. Furthermore, our data reveals that even for highly mobile species such as bats, a very dense network of connecting elements within the landscape is

  5. Bacterial endophyte communities of three agricultural important grass species differ in their response towards management regimes.

    PubMed

    Wemheuer, Franziska; Kaiser, Kristin; Karlovsky, Petr; Daniel, Rolf; Vidal, Stefan; Wemheuer, Bernd

    2017-01-19

    Endophytic bacteria are critical for plant growth and health. However, compositional and functional responses of bacterial endophyte communities towards agricultural practices are still poorly understood. Hence, we analyzed the influence of fertilizer application and mowing frequency on bacterial endophytes in three agriculturally important grass species. For this purpose, we examined bacterial endophytic communities in aerial plant parts of Dactylis glomerata L., Festuca rubra L., and Lolium perenne L. by pyrotag sequencing of bacterial 16S rRNA genes over two consecutive years. Although management regimes influenced endophyte communities, observed responses were grass species-specific. This might be attributed to several bacteria specifically associated with a single grass species. We further predicted functional profiles from obtained 16S rRNA data. These profiles revealed that predicted abundances of genes involved in plant growth promotion or nitrogen metabolism differed between grass species and between management regimes. Moreover, structural and functional community patterns showed no correlation to each other indicating that plant species-specific selection of endophytes is driven by functional rather than phylogenetic traits. The unique combination of 16S rRNA data and functional profiles provided a holistic picture of compositional and functional responses of bacterial endophytes in agricultural relevant grass species towards management practices.

  6. Bacterial endophyte communities of three agricultural important grass species differ in their response towards management regimes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wemheuer, Franziska; Kaiser, Kristin; Karlovsky, Petr; Daniel, Rolf; Vidal, Stefan; Wemheuer, Bernd

    2017-01-01

    Endophytic bacteria are critical for plant growth and health. However, compositional and functional responses of bacterial endophyte communities towards agricultural practices are still poorly understood. Hence, we analyzed the influence of fertilizer application and mowing frequency on bacterial endophytes in three agriculturally important grass species. For this purpose, we examined bacterial endophytic communities in aerial plant parts of Dactylis glomerata L., Festuca rubra L., and Lolium perenne L. by pyrotag sequencing of bacterial 16S rRNA genes over two consecutive years. Although management regimes influenced endophyte communities, observed responses were grass species-specific. This might be attributed to several bacteria specifically associated with a single grass species. We further predicted functional profiles from obtained 16S rRNA data. These profiles revealed that predicted abundances of genes involved in plant growth promotion or nitrogen metabolism differed between grass species and between management regimes. Moreover, structural and functional community patterns showed no correlation to each other indicating that plant species-specific selection of endophytes is driven by functional rather than phylogenetic traits. The unique combination of 16S rRNA data and functional profiles provided a holistic picture of compositional and functional responses of bacterial endophytes in agricultural relevant grass species towards management practices.

  7. Bacterial endophyte communities of three agricultural important grass species differ in their response towards management regimes

    PubMed Central

    Wemheuer, Franziska; Kaiser, Kristin; Karlovsky, Petr; Daniel, Rolf; Vidal, Stefan; Wemheuer, Bernd

    2017-01-01

    Endophytic bacteria are critical for plant growth and health. However, compositional and functional responses of bacterial endophyte communities towards agricultural practices are still poorly understood. Hence, we analyzed the influence of fertilizer application and mowing frequency on bacterial endophytes in three agriculturally important grass species. For this purpose, we examined bacterial endophytic communities in aerial plant parts of Dactylis glomerata L., Festuca rubra L., and Lolium perenne L. by pyrotag sequencing of bacterial 16S rRNA genes over two consecutive years. Although management regimes influenced endophyte communities, observed responses were grass species-specific. This might be attributed to several bacteria specifically associated with a single grass species. We further predicted functional profiles from obtained 16S rRNA data. These profiles revealed that predicted abundances of genes involved in plant growth promotion or nitrogen metabolism differed between grass species and between management regimes. Moreover, structural and functional community patterns showed no correlation to each other indicating that plant species-specific selection of endophytes is driven by functional rather than phylogenetic traits. The unique combination of 16S rRNA data and functional profiles provided a holistic picture of compositional and functional responses of bacterial endophytes in agricultural relevant grass species towards management practices. PMID:28102323

  8. Supplementary calcium ameliorates ammonium toxicity by improving water status in agriculturally important species.

    PubMed

    Hernández-Gómez, Elvia; Valdez-Aguilar, Luis A; Cartmill, Donita L; Cartmill, Andrew D; Alia-Tajacal, Irán

    2015-09-02

    Fertilization of agricultural plants with ammonium [Formula: see text] is often desirable because it is less susceptible to leaching than nitrate [Formula: see text] reducing environmental pollution, risk to human health and economic loss. However, a number of important agricultural species exhibit a reduction in growth when fertilized with [Formula: see text] and increasing the tolerance to [Formula: see text] may be of importance for the establishment of sustainable agricultural systems. The present study explored the feasibility of using calcium (Ca) to increase the tolerance of bell pepper (Capsicum annuum) to [Formula: see text] fertilization. Although [Formula: see text] at proportions ≥25 % of total nitrogen (N) decreased leaf dry mass (DM), supplementary Ca ameliorated this decrease. Increasing [Formula: see text] resulted in decreased root hydraulic conductance (Lo) and root water content (RWC), suggesting that water uptake by roots was impaired. The [Formula: see text]-induced reductions in Lo and RWC were mitigated by supplementary Ca. Ammonium induced increased damage to the cell membranes through lipid peroxidation, causing increased electrolyte leakage; Ca did not reduce lipid peroxidation and resulted in increased electrolyte leakage, suggesting that the beneficial effects of Ca on the tolerance to [Formula: see text] may be more of a reflection on its effect on the water status of the plant. Bell pepper plants that received [Formula: see text] had a low concentration of [Formula: see text] in the roots but a high concentration in the leaves, probably due to the high nitrate reductase activity observed. Ammonium nutrition depressed the uptake of potassium, Ca and magnesium, while increasing that of phosphorus. The results obtained in the present study indicate that [Formula: see text] caused growth reduction, nutrient imbalance, membrane integrity impairment, increased activity of antioxidant enzymes and affected water relations. Supplementary Ca

  9. Supplementary calcium ameliorates ammonium toxicity by improving water status in agriculturally important species

    PubMed Central

    Hernández-Gómez, Elvia; Valdez-Aguilar, Luis A.; Cartmill, Donita L.; Cartmill, Andrew D.; Alia-Tajacal, Irán

    2015-01-01

    Fertilization of agricultural plants with ammonium (NH4+) is often desirable because it is less susceptible to leaching than nitrate (NO3−), reducing environmental pollution, risk to human health and economic loss. However, a number of important agricultural species exhibit a reduction in growth when fertilized with NH4+, and increasing the tolerance to NH4+ may be of importance for the establishment of sustainable agricultural systems. The present study explored the feasibility of using calcium (Ca) to increase the tolerance of bell pepper (Capsicum annuum) to NH4+ fertilization. Although NH4+ at proportions ≥25 % of total nitrogen (N) decreased leaf dry mass (DM), supplementary Ca ameliorated this decrease. Increasing NH4+ resulted in decreased root hydraulic conductance (Lo) and root water content (RWC), suggesting that water uptake by roots was impaired. The NH4+-induced reductions in Lo and RWC were mitigated by supplementary Ca. Ammonium induced increased damage to the cell membranes through lipid peroxidation, causing increased electrolyte leakage; Ca did not reduce lipid peroxidation and resulted in increased electrolyte leakage, suggesting that the beneficial effects of Ca on the tolerance to NH4+ may be more of a reflection on its effect on the water status of the plant. Bell pepper plants that received NO3−N had a low concentration of NH4+ in the roots but a high concentration in the leaves, probably due to the high nitrate reductase activity observed. Ammonium nutrition depressed the uptake of potassium, Ca and magnesium, while increasing that of phosphorus. The results obtained in the present study indicate that NH4+ caused growth reduction, nutrient imbalance, membrane integrity impairment, increased activity of antioxidant enzymes and affected water relations. Supplementary Ca partially restored growth of leaves by improving root Lo and water relations, and our results suggest that it may be used as a tool to increase the tolerance to NH4

  10. Screening of different Trichoderma species against agriculturally important foliar plant pathogens.

    PubMed

    Prabhakaran, Narayanasamy; Prameeladevi, Thokala; Sathiyabama, Muthukrishnan; Kamil, Deeba

    2015-01-01

    Different isolates of Trichoderma were isolated from soil samples which were collected from different part of India. These isolates were grouped into four Trichoderma species viz., Trichoderma asperellum (Ta), T. harzianum (Th), T. pseudokoningii (Tp) and T. longibrachiatum (Tl) based on their morphological characters. Identification of the above isolates was also confirmed through ITS region analysis. These Trichoderma isolates were tested for in vitro biological control of Alternaria solani, Bipolaris oryzae, Pyricularia oryzae and Sclerotinia scierotiorum which cause serious diseases like early blight (target spot) of tomato and potato, brown leaf spot disease in rice, rice blast disease, and white mold disease in different plants. Under in vitro conditions, all the four species of Trichoderma (10 isolates) proved 100% potential inhibition against rice blast pathogen Pyracularia oryzae. T. harzianum (Th-01) and T. asperellum (Ta-10) were effective with 86.6% and 97.7%, growth inhibition of B. oryzae, respectively. Among others, T. pseudokoningii (Tp-08) and T. Iongibrachiatum (Tl-09) species were particularly efficient in inhibiting growth of S. sclerotiorum by 97.8% and 93.3%. T. Iongibrachiatum (TI-06 and TI-07) inhibited maximum mycelial growth of A. solani by 87.6% and 84.75. However, all the T. harzianum isolates showed significantly higher inhibition against S. sclerotiorum (CD value 9.430), causing white mold disease. This study led to the selection of potential Trichoderma isolates against rice blast, early blight, brown leaf spot in rice and white mold disease in different crops.

  11. A new species and key to species of the agriculturally important sharpshooter genus Sonesimia Young (Hemiptera: Cicadellidae: Cicadellini).

    PubMed

    Felix, Márcio; Lima, Douglas Felipe Dos Santos; Mejdalani, Gabriel; Cavichioli, Rodney R

    2013-01-17

    The new sharpshooter species Sonesimia nessimiani is described from Bolivia based on specimens collected on sugar cane. An identification key to males and females of all known species of the genus is given. In addition to the external morphology, color pattern, and male genitalia, female genital structures are also described and illustrated. Notes comparing the new species with the remaining six Sonesimia species are provided.

  12. Invasive species in agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural production of food, feed, fiber or fuel is a local human activity with global ecological impacts, including the potential to foster invasions. Agriculture plays an unusual role in biological invasions, in that it is both a source of non-indigenous invasive species (NIS) and especially s...

  13. Molecular characterization of a mutation affecting abscisic acid biosynthesis and consequently stomatal responses to humidity in an agriculturally important species

    PubMed Central

    McAdam, Scott A. M.; Sussmilch, Frances C.; Brodribb, Timothy J.; Ross, John J.

    2015-01-01

    Mutants deficient in the phytohormone abscisic acid (ABA) have been instrumental in determining not only the biosynthetic pathway for this hormone, but also its physiological role in land plants. The wilty mutant of Pisum sativum is one of the classical, well-studied ABA-deficient mutants; however, this mutant remains uncharacterized at a molecular level. Using a candidate gene approach, we show that the wilty mutation affects the xanthoxin dehydrogenase step in ABA biosynthesis. To date, this step has only been represented by mutants in the ABA2 gene of Arabidopsis thaliana. Functional ABA biosynthesis appears to be critical for normal stomatal responses to changes in humidity in angiosperms, with wilty mutant plants having no increase in foliar ABA levels in response to a doubling in vapour pressure deficit, and no closure of stomata. Phylogenetic analysis of the ABA2 gene family from diverse land plants indicates that an ABA-biosynthesis-specific short-chain dehydrogenase (ABA2) evolved in the earliest angiosperms. The relatively recent origin of specificity in this step has important implications for both the evolution of ABA biosynthesis and action in land plants. PMID:26216469

  14. The importance of agricultural lands for Himalayan birds in winter.

    PubMed

    Elsen, Paul R; Kalyanaraman, Ramnarayan; Ramesh, Krishnamurthy; Wilcove, David S

    2017-04-01

    The impacts of land-use change on biodiversity in the Himalayas are poorly known, notwithstanding widespread deforestation and agricultural intensification in this highly biodiverse region. Although intact primary forests harbor many Himalayan birds during breeding, a large number of bird species use agricultural lands during winter. We assessed how Himalayan bird species richness, abundance, and composition during winter are affected by forest loss stemming from agriculture and grazing. Bird surveys along 12 elevational transects within primary forest, low-intensity agriculture, mixed subsistence agriculture, and intensively grazed pastures in winter revealed that bird species richness and abundance were greatest in low-intensity and mixed agriculture, intermediate in grazed pastures, and lowest in primary forest at both local and landscape scales; over twice as many species and individuals were recorded in low-intensity agriculture than in primary forest. Bird communities in primary forests were distinct from those in all other land-use classes, but only 4 species were unique to primary forests. Low-, medium-, and high-intensity agriculture harbored 32 unique species. Of the species observed in primary forest, 80% had equal or greater abundance in low-intensity agricultural lands, underscoring the value of these lands in retaining diverse community assemblages at high densities in winter. Among disturbed landscapes, bird species richness and abundance declined as land-use intensity increased, especially in high-intensity pastures. Our results suggest that agricultural landscapes are important for most Himalayan bird species in winter. But agricultural intensification-especially increased grazing-will likely result in biodiversity losses. Given that forest reserves alone may inadequately conserve Himalayan birds in winter, comprehensive conservation strategies in the region must go beyond protecting intact primary forests and ensure that low-intensity agricultural

  15. Agriculture Teachers: An Endangered Species?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hemp, Paul E.

    1979-01-01

    Discusses a 1978 survey highlighting some of the factors which may be related to the critical shortage of agriculture teachers in Illinois and the high rate of turnover among these teachers. These factors include the time required on the job, inadequate salaries, and large classes. (JOW)

  16. Economic importance of bats in agriculture

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Boyles, Justin G.; Cryan, Paul M.; McCracken, Gary F.; Kunz, Thomas H.

    2011-01-01

    White-nose syndrome (WNS) and the increased development of wind-power facilities are threatening populations of insectivorous bats in North America. Bats are voracious predators of nocturnal insects, including many crop and forest pests. We present here analyses suggesting that loss of bats in North America could lead to agricultural losses estimated at more than $3.7 billion/year. Urgent efforts are needed to educate the public and policy-makers about the ecological and economic importance of insectivorous bats and to provide practical conservation solutions.

  17. Multilocus phylogeny reveals an association of agriculturally important Fusarium solani species complex (FSSC) 11, and clinically important FSSC 5 and FSSC 3 + 4 with soybean roots in the north central United States.

    PubMed

    Chitrampalam, P; Nelson, B

    2016-02-01

    The Fusarium solani species complex (FSSC) includes important root pathogens of soybean in the United States, but the evolutionary lineages associated with soybean root rot are unknown. A multilocus phylogeny based on 93 isolates from soybean and pea roots from North Dakota and Minnesota revealed that root rot was associated with three known phylogenetic species, FSSC 3 + 4 (=Fusarium falciforme) (3 % of isolates), FSSC 5 (60 %), FSSC 11 (34 %), and one unknown species, FSSC X (2 %). Of these species FSSC 5 and FSSC 3 + 4 are clinically important while FSSC 11 is a plant pathogen. Isolates from FSSC 11 were pathogenic on soybean, dry bean, pea and lentil, and did not grow at 37 °C. However, isolates from FSSC 5 were weakly to non-pathogenic, but grew at 37 °C. Isolates from both FSSC 5 and FSSC 11 were highly resistant to fludioxonil in vitro. This is the first study revealing the pathogenic robustness of FSSC 11 in causing root rot among Fabaceae crops and also the association of clinically important members of the FSSC with roots of a widely grown field crop in the United States.

  18. Importance of energy balance in agriculture.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meco, R.; Moreno, M. M.; Lacasta, C.; Tarquis, A. M.; Moreno, C.

    2012-04-01

    Since the beginning, man has tried to control nature and the environment, and the use of energy, mainly from non-renewable sources providing the necessary power for that. The consequences of this long fight against nature has reached a critical state of unprecedented worldwide environmental degradation, as evidenced by the increasing erosion of fertile lands, the deforestation processes, the pollution of water, air and land by agrochemicals, the loss of plant and animal species, the progressive deterioration of the ozone layer and signs of global warming. This is exacerbated by the increasing population growth, implying a steady increase in consumption, and consequently, in the use of energy. Unfortunately, all these claims are resulting in serious economic and environmental problems worldwide. Because the economic and environmental future of the countries is interrelated, it becomes necessary to adopt sustainable development models based on the use of renewable and clean energies, the search for alternative resources and the use of productive systems more efficient from an energy standpoint, always with a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. In relation to the agricultural sector, the question we ask is: how long can we keep the current energy-intensive agricultural techniques in developed countries? To analyze this aspect, energy balance is a very helpful tool because can lead to more efficient, sustainable and environment-friendly production systems for each agro-climatic region. This requires the identification of all the inputs and the outputs involved and their conversion to energy values by means of corresponding energy coefficients or equivalents (International Federation of Institutes for Advanced Studies). Energy inputs (EI) can be divided in direct (energy directly used in farms as fuel, machines, fertilizers, seeds, herbicides, human labor, etc.) and indirect (energy not consumed in the farm but in the elaboration, manufacturing or manipulation of

  19. Global threat to agriculture from invasive species.

    PubMed

    Paini, Dean R; Sheppard, Andy W; Cook, David C; De Barro, Paul J; Worner, Susan P; Thomas, Matthew B

    2016-07-05

    Invasive species present significant threats to global agriculture, although how the magnitude and distribution of the threats vary between countries and regions remains unclear. Here, we present an analysis of almost 1,300 known invasive insect pests and pathogens, calculating the total potential cost of these species invading each of 124 countries of the world, as well as determining which countries present the greatest threat to the rest of the world given their trading partners and incumbent pool of invasive species. We find that countries vary in terms of potential threat from invasive species and also their role as potential sources, with apparently similar countries sometimes varying markedly depending on specifics of agricultural commodities and trade patterns. Overall, the biggest agricultural producers (China and the United States) could experience the greatest absolute cost from further species invasions. However, developing countries, in particular, Sub-Saharan African countries, appear most vulnerable in relative terms. Furthermore, China and the United States represent the greatest potential sources of invasive species for the rest of the world. The analysis reveals considerable scope for ongoing redistribution of known invasive pests and highlights the need for international cooperation to slow their spread.

  20. Global threat to agriculture from invasive species

    PubMed Central

    Paini, Dean R.; Sheppard, Andy W.; Cook, David C.; De Barro, Paul J.; Worner, Susan P.; Thomas, Matthew B.

    2016-01-01

    Invasive species present significant threats to global agriculture, although how the magnitude and distribution of the threats vary between countries and regions remains unclear. Here, we present an analysis of almost 1,300 known invasive insect pests and pathogens, calculating the total potential cost of these species invading each of 124 countries of the world, as well as determining which countries present the greatest threat to the rest of the world given their trading partners and incumbent pool of invasive species. We find that countries vary in terms of potential threat from invasive species and also their role as potential sources, with apparently similar countries sometimes varying markedly depending on specifics of agricultural commodities and trade patterns. Overall, the biggest agricultural producers (China and the United States) could experience the greatest absolute cost from further species invasions. However, developing countries, in particular, Sub-Saharan African countries, appear most vulnerable in relative terms. Furthermore, China and the United States represent the greatest potential sources of invasive species for the rest of the world. The analysis reveals considerable scope for ongoing redistribution of known invasive pests and highlights the need for international cooperation to slow their spread. PMID:27325781

  1. Agricultural Warfare and Bioterrorism using Invasive Species

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The chapter on Agricultural Warfare and Bioterrorism using Invasive Species is part of the book titled Pest Management and Phytosanitary Trade Barriers authored by Neil Heather (Australia) and Guy Hallman. The chapter attempts to briefly put the topic into context with phytosanitation. It presents...

  2. Biology: An Important Agricultural Engineering Mechanism

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Henderson, S. M.

    1974-01-01

    Describes the field of bioengineering with particular emphasis on agricultural engineering, and presents the results of a survey of schools that combine biology and engineering in their curricula. (JR)

  3. Mycotoxin contamination of commercially important agricultural commodities

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fungal toxins, called aflatoxins and other mold toxins, are a serious problem in US agricultural commodities. Due to aflatoxins resilience to industrial processes contaminated crops (corn, cotton, peanuts, and tree nuts) cannot be used. The loss of these commodities results in serious economic impa...

  4. The Importance of Agriculture Science Course Sequencing in High Schools: A View from Collegiate Agriculture Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wheelus, Robin P.

    2009-01-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate the importance of Agriculture Science course sequencing in high schools, as a preparatory factor for students enrolled in collegiate agriculture classes. With the variety of courses listed in the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) for Agriculture Science, it has been possible for counselors,…

  5. Perceptions of Vocational Agriculture Instructors Regarding Knowledge and Importance of Including Selected Agricultural Mechanics Units in the Vocational Agriculture Program.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heimgartner, Dale C.; Foster, Richard M.

    1981-01-01

    A survey of teachers in five northwestern states revealed that respondents in all states rated the units of arc welding and oxyacetylene welding as the most important units to be included in secondary vocational agriculture programs. (LRA)

  6. The eco-evolutionary impacts of domestication and agricultural practices on wild species.

    PubMed

    Turcotte, Martin M; Araki, Hitoshi; Karp, Daniel S; Poveda, Katja; Whitehead, Susan R

    2017-01-19

    Agriculture is a dominant evolutionary force that drives the evolution of both domesticated and wild species. However, the various mechanisms of agriculture-induced evolution and their socio-ecological consequences are not often synthetically discussed. Here, we explore how agricultural practices and evolutionary changes in domesticated species cause evolution in wild species. We do so by examining three processes by which agriculture drives evolution. First, differences in the traits of domesticated species, compared with their wild ancestors, alter the selective environment and create opportunities for wild species to specialize. Second, selection caused by agricultural practices, including both those meant to maximize productivity and those meant to control pest species, can lead to pest adaptation. Third, agriculture can cause non-selective changes in patterns of gene flow in wild species. We review evidence for these processes and then discuss their ecological and sociological impacts. We finish by identifying important knowledge gaps and future directions related to the eco-evolutionary impacts of agriculture including their extent, how to prevent the detrimental evolution of wild species, and finally, how to use evolution to minimize the ecological impacts of agriculture.This article is part of the themed issue 'Human influences on evolution, and the ecological and societal consequences'.

  7. Allergens/Antigens, toxins and polyketides of important Aspergillus species.

    PubMed

    Bhetariya, Preetida J; Madan, Taruna; Basir, Seemi Farhat; Varma, Anupam; Usha, Sarma P

    2011-04-01

    The medical, agricultural and biotechnological importance of the primitive eukaryotic microorganisms, the Fungi was recognized way back in 1920. Among various groups of fungi, the Aspergillus species are studied in great detail using advances in genomics and proteomics to unravel biological and molecular mechanisms in these fungi. Aspergillus fumigatus, Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus parasiticus, Aspergillus nidulans and Aspergillus terreus are some of the important species relevant to human, agricultural and biotechnological applications. The potential of Aspergillus species to produce highly diversified complex biomolecules such as multifunctional proteins (allergens, antigens, enzymes) and polyketides is fascinating and demands greater insight into the understanding of these fungal species for application to human health. Recently a regulator gene for secondary metabolites, LaeA has been identified. Gene mining based on LaeA has facilitated new metabolites with antimicrobial activity such as emericellamides and antitumor activity such as terrequinone A from A. nidulans. Immunoproteomic approach was reported for identification of few novel allergens for A. fumigatus. In this context, the review is focused on recent developments in allergens, antigens, structural and functional diversity of the polyketide synthases that produce polyketides of pharmaceutical and biological importance. Possible antifungal drug targets for development of effective antifungal drugs and new strategies for development of molecular diagnostics are considered.

  8. Recognising Differences in Weed and Crop Species Recognition Skills of Agriculture Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burrows, Geoffrey E.

    2012-01-01

    Students in an agricultural science degree were surveyed to assess their ability to recognise plants of agricultural importance. The survey consisted of high quality images of 25 species. Students were surveyed at the start of their studies in first year, and at various times during their second year of studies. At the start of their studies…

  9. Importance of Animals in Agricultural Sustainability and Food Security.

    PubMed

    Reynolds, Lawrence P; Wulster-Radcliffe, Meghan C; Aaron, Debra K; Davis, Teresa A

    2015-07-01

    A conservative projection shows the world's population growing by 32% (to 9.5 billion) by 2050 and 53% (to 11 billion) by 2100 compared with its current level of 7.2 billion. Because most arable land worldwide is already in use, and water and energy also are limiting, increased production of food will require a substantial increase in efficiency. In this article, we highlight the importance of animals to achieving food security in terms of their valuable contributions to agricultural sustainability, especially in developing countries, and the high nutritional value of animal products in the diet.

  10. Importance and Capability of Teaching Agricultural Mechanics as Perceived by Secondary Agricultural Educators

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shultz, Matthew J.; Anderson, Ryan G.; Shultz, Alyx M.; Paulsen, Thomas H.

    2014-01-01

    Agricultural mechanics instruction is a long-standing and significant part of secondary agricultural education. Similar to the broader agricultural industry, agricultural mechanics instruction is in a constant state of dynamic change. Educators must be proactive to ensure agricultural mechanics curriculum retains its relevance within this changing…

  11. 7 CFR 319.8-20 - Importations by the Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Importations by the Department of Agriculture. 319.8-20 Section 319.8-20 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Foreign Cotton...

  12. 7 CFR 319.8-20 - Importations by the Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importations by the Department of Agriculture. 319.8-20 Section 319.8-20 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Foreign Cotton...

  13. 7 CFR 319.8-20 - Importations by the Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Importations by the Department of Agriculture. 319.8-20 Section 319.8-20 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Foreign Cotton...

  14. 7 CFR 319.8-20 - Importations by the Department of Agriculture.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Importations by the Department of Agriculture. 319.8-20 Section 319.8-20 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOREIGN QUARANTINE NOTICES Foreign Cotton...

  15. Anaplasma species of veterinary importance in Japan

    PubMed Central

    Ybañez, Adrian Patalinghug; Inokuma, Hisashi

    2016-01-01

    Anaplasma species of the family Anaplasmataceae, order Rickettsiales are tick-borne organisms that can cause disease in animals and humans. In Japan, all recognized species of Anaplasma (except for Anaplasma ovis) and a potentially novel Anaplasma sp. closely related to Anaplasma phagocytophilum have been reported. Most of these detected tick-borne pathogens are believed to be lowly pathogenic in animals in Japan although the zoonotic A. phagocytophilum has recently been reported to cause clinical signs in a dog and in humans. This review documents the studies and reports about Anaplasma spp. in Japan. PMID:27956767

  16. Effect of scale on trait predictors of species responses to agriculture.

    PubMed

    Gilroy, James J; Medina Uribe, Claudia A; Haugaasen, Torbjørn; Edwards, David P

    2015-04-01

    Species persistence in human-altered landscapes can depend on factors operating at multiple spatial scales. To understand anthropogenic impacts on biodiversity, it is useful to examine relationships between species traits and their responses to land-use change. A key knowledge gap concerns whether these relationships vary depending on the scale of response under consideration. We examined how local- and large-scale habitat variables influence the occupancy dynamics of a bird community in cloud forest zones in the Colombian Chocó-Andes. Using data collected across a continuum of forest and agriculture, we examined which traits best predict species responses to local variation in farmland and which traits best predict species responses to isolation from contiguous forest. Global range size was a strong predictor of species responses to agriculture at both scales; widespread species were less likely to decline as local habitat cover decreased and as distance from forest increased. Habitat specialization was a strong predictor of species responses only at the local scale. Open-habitat species were particularly likely to increase as pasture increased, but they were relatively insensitive to variation in distance to forest. Foraging plasticity and flocking behavior were strong predictors of species responses to distance from forest, but not their responses to local habitat. Species with lower plasticity in foraging behaviors and obligate flock-following species were more likely to decline as distance from contiguous forest increased. For species exhibiting these latter traits, persistence in tropical landscapes may depend on the protection of larger contiguous blocks of forest, rather than the integration of smaller-scale woodland areas within farmland. Species listed as threatened or near threatened on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List were also more likely to decline in response to both local habitat quality and isolation from forest relative

  17. Importance of Including Values Instruction As a Part of Vocational Agriculture Programs of Study.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Birkenholz, Robert J.; Kahler, Alan A.

    1982-01-01

    Vocational agriculture program participants were interviewed to determine the importance of including instruction in values development for students. Data analysis revealed that enhancing values is an important part of vocational agriculture programs. Students generally rated the importance of each value category lower than teachers,…

  18. Importance of intraspecifically gregarious species in a tropical bird community.

    PubMed

    Sridhar, Hari; Shanker, Kartik

    2014-11-01

    In both single- and mixed-species social groups, certain participants are known to play important roles in providing benefits. Identifying these participants is critical for understanding group dynamics, but is often difficult with large roving social groups in the wild. Here, we develop a new approach to characterize roles in social groups and apply it to mixed-species bird flocks (flocks hereafter) in an Indian tropical evergreen forest. Two types of species, namely intraspecifically gregarious and sallying species, are thought to play important roles in flocks because studies have shown they attract other flock participants. However, it is unclear why these types are attractive and whether they are essential for flock formation. We address these questions by focusing on the composition of the subset of flocks containing only two species each. In two-species flocks, it is reasonable to assume that at least one species obtains some kind of benefit. Therefore, only those species combinations that result in benefit to at least one species should occur as two-species flocks. Using data from 540 flocks overall, of which 158 were two-species flocks, we find that intraspecifically gregarious species are disproportionately represented in two-species flocks and always lead flocks when present, and that flocks containing them are joined significantly more by other species. Our results suggest that intraspecifically gregarious species are likely to be the primary benefit providers in flocks and are important for tropical flock formation. Our study also provides a new approach to understanding importance in other mixed-species and single-species social groups.

  19. The angiosperm phloem sieve tube system: a role in mediating traits important to modern agriculture.

    PubMed

    Ham, Byung-Kook; Lucas, William J

    2014-04-01

    The plant vascular system serves a vital function by distributing water, nutrients and hormones essential for growth and development to the various organs of the plant. In this review, attention is focused on the role played by the phloem as the conduit for delivery of both photosynthate and information macromolecules, especially from the context of its mediation in traits that are important to modern agriculture. Resource allocation of sugars and amino acids, by the phloem, to specific sink tissues is of importance to crop yield and global food security. Current findings are discussed in the context of a hierarchical control network that operates to integrate resource allocation to competing sinks. The role of plasmodesmata that connect companion cells to neighbouring sieve elements and phloem parenchyma cells is evaluated in terms of their function as valves, connecting the sieve tube pressure manifold system to the various plant tissues. Recent studies have also revealed that plasmodesmata and the phloem sieve tube system function cooperatively to mediate the long-distance delivery of proteins and a diverse array of RNA species. Delivery of these information macromolecules is discussed in terms of their roles in control over the vegetative-to-floral transition, tuberization in potato, stress-related signalling involving miRNAs, and genetic reprogramming through the delivery of 24-nucleotide small RNAs that function in transcriptional gene silencing in recipient sink organs. Finally, we discuss important future research areas that could contribute to developing agricultural crops with engineered performance characteristics for enhance yield potential.

  20. Secondary metabolites of endophytic Xylaria species with potential applications in medicine and agriculture.

    PubMed

    Macías-Rubalcava, Martha Lydia; Sánchez-Fernández, Rosa Elvira

    2017-01-01

    Fungal endophytes are important sources of bioactive secondary metabolites. The genus Xylaria Hill (ex Schrank, 1789, Xylariaceae) comprises various endophytic species associated to both vascular and non vascular plants. The secondary metabolites produced by Xylaria species include a variety of volatile and non-volatile compounds. Examples of the former are sesquiterpenoids, esters, and alcohols, among others; and of the latter we find terpenoids, cytochalasins, mellein, alkaloids, polyketides, and aromatic compounds. Some of these metabolites have shown potential activity as herbicides, fungicides, and insecticides; others possess antibacterial, antimalarial, and antifungal activities, or α-glucosidase inhibitory activity. Thus metabolites from Xylaria are promising compounds for applications in agriculture for plague control as biopesticides, and biocontrol agents; and in medicine, for example as drugs for the treatment of infectious and non-infectious diseases. This review seeks to show the great value of the secondary metabolites of Xylaria, particularly in the agriculture and medicine fields.

  1. Importance of Including Language Arts Instruction as Part of the Vocational Agriculture Program of Study.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Foster, Richard M.; Kahler, Alan A.

    1979-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to determine the importance of including language arts instruction as part of the vocational agriculture program. Perceptions of students, parents, teachers, principals, and counselors were examined to identify specific skills to be integrated into vocational agriculture instruction. (SK)

  2. Control of Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis infection in agricultural species.

    PubMed

    Kennedy, D J; Benedictus, G

    2001-04-01

    Paratuberculosis or Johne's disease is a chronic intestinal disease caused by Mycobacterium avium subsp. paratuberculosis, which continues to spread in agricultural species. Control of paratuberculosis is challenging and should not be underestimated. Due to the long incubation period of the infection, disease is largely subclinical in domesticated livestock. Hence, direct effects on animal productivity and welfare are often masked and may appear insufficient to justify large investments in control programmes by individual farmers, livestock industries or governments. Furthermore, in some countries the main effects of the disease are indirect, resulting from the impact of market discrimination against herds and flocks known to be infected, or from the control measures enforced to reduce transmission. In such circumstances, producers may be unwilling to co-operate with surveillance that may detect infection in herds or flocks. As control programmes are rarely successful in eliminating the infection from a herd or flock in the short term without an aggressive and costly programme, financial and community support assists producers to deal with the challenge. Successful prevention and control depends on animal health authorities and livestock industries acquiring a good understanding of the nature and epidemiology of infection, and of the application of tools for diagnosis and control. Building support for control programmes under the leadership of the affected livestock industries is critical, as programmes are unlikely to be successful without ongoing political will, supported by funding for research, surveillance and control.

  3. The nuclear question: rethinking species importance in multi-species animal groups.

    PubMed

    Srinivasan, Umesh; Raza, Rashid Hasnain; Quader, Suhel

    2010-09-01

    1. Animals group for various benefits, and may form either simple single-species groups, or more complex multi-species associations. Multi-species groups are thought to provide anti-predator and foraging benefits to participant individuals. 2. Despite detailed studies on multi-species animal groups, the importance of species in group initiation and maintenance is still rated qualitatively as 'nuclear' (maintaining groups) or 'attendant' (species following nuclear species) based on species-specific traits. This overly simplifies and limits understanding of inherently complex associations, and is biologically unrealistic, because species roles in multi-species groups are: (i) likely to be context-specific and not simply a fixed species property, and (ii) much more variable than this dichotomy indicates. 3. We propose a new view of species importance (measured as number of inter-species associations), along a continuum from 'most nuclear' to 'least nuclear'. Using mixed-species bird flocks from a tropical rainforest in India as an example, we derive inter-species association measures from randomizations on bird species abundance data (which takes into account species 'availability') and data on 86 mixed-species flocks from two different flock types. Our results show that the number and average strength of inter-species associations covary positively, and we argue that species with many, strong associations are the most nuclear. 4. From our data, group size and foraging method are ecological and behavioural traits of species that best explain nuclearity in mixed-species bird flocks. Parallels have been observed in multi-species fish shoals, in which group size and foraging method, as well as diet, have been shown to correlate with nuclearity. Further, the context in which multi-species groups occur, in conjunction with species-specific traits, influences the role played by a species in a multi-species group, and this highlights the importance of extrinsic factors in

  4. Selected historic agricultural data important to environmental quality in the United States

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Grey, Katia M.; Capel, Paul D.; Baker, Nancy T.; Thelin, Gail P.

    2012-01-01

    This report and the accompanying tables summarize some of the important changes in American agriculture in the form of a timeline and a compilation of selected annual time-series data that can be broadly related to environmental quality. Although these changes have been beneficial for increasing agricultural production, some of them have resulted in environmental concerns. The agriculture timeline is divided into four categories (1) crop and animal changes, (2) mechanical changes, (3) biological and chemical changes, and (4) regulatory and societal changes. The timeline attempts to compile events that have had a lasting impact on agriculture in the United States. The events and data presented in this report may help to improve the connections between agricultural activist and environmental concerns.

  5. Metal uptake by agricultural plant species grown in sludge-amended soil following ecosystem restoration practices

    SciTech Connect

    Peles, J.D.; Barrett, G.W.; Brewer, S.R.

    1996-12-01

    The disposal of municipal sewage sludge is an important environmental problem presently facing society. Because sludge is rich in plant nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorous, land application as a fertilizer has been proposed as a cost-effective means of disposal. This method of disposal, however, is frequently the subject of public health concern since municipal sludge may contain heavy metals that potentially could be introduced into the human food chain. This study examined metal concentrations in two agricultural species at a study site where ecosystem restoration practices (liming and tilling) had been conducted for 5 years following 11 years of sludge enrichment. 11 refs., 2 tabs.

  6. Homogenizing and diversifying effects of intensive agricultural land-use on plant species beta diversity in Central Europe - A call to adapt our conservation measures.

    PubMed

    Buhk, Constanze; Alt, Martin; Steinbauer, Manuel J; Beierkuhnlein, Carl; Warren, Steven D; Jentsch, Anke

    2017-01-15

    The prevention of biodiversity loss in agricultural landscapes to protect ecosystem stability and functions is of major importance to stabilize overall diversity. Intense agriculture leads to a loss in species richness and homogenization of species pools, but the processes behind are poorly understood due to a lack of systematic case studies: The specific impacts by agriculture in contrast to other land-use creating open habitat are not studied as such landscapes hardly exist in temperate regions. Applying systematic grids, we compared the plant species distribution at the landscape scale between an active military training areas in Europe and an adjacent rather intensively used agricultural landscape. As the study areas differ mainly in the type of disturbance regime (agricultural vs. non-agricultural), differences in species pattern can be traced back more or less directly to the management. Species trait analyses and multiple measures of beta diversity were applied to differentiate between species similarities between plots, distance-decay, or nestedness. Contrary to our expectation, overall beta diversity in the agricultural area was not reduced but increased under agricultural. This was probably the result of species nestedness due to fragmentation. The natural process of increasing dissimilarity with distance (distance-decay) was suppressed by intense agricultural land-use, generalist and long-distance dispersers gained importance, while rare species lost continuity. There are two independent processes that need to be addressed separately to halt biodiversity loss in agricultural land. There is a need to conserve semi-natural open habitat patches of diverse size to favor poor dispersers and specialist species. At the same time, we stress the importance of mediating biotic homogenization caused by the decrease of distance-decay: The spread of long-distance dispersers in agricultural fields may be acceptable, however, optimized fertilizer input and erosion

  7. Tetracycline and Phenicol Resistance Genes and Mechanisms: Importance for Agriculture, the Environment, and Humans.

    PubMed

    Roberts, Marilyn C; Schwarz, Stefan

    2016-03-01

    Recent reports have speculated on the future impact that antibiotic-resistant bacteria will have on food production, human health, and global economics. This review examines microbial resistance to tetracyclines and phenicols, antibiotics that are widely used in global food production. The mechanisms of resistance, mode of spread between agriculturally and human-impacted environments and ecosystems, distribution among bacteria, and the genes most likely to be associated with agricultural and environmental settings are included. Forty-six different tetracycline resistance () genes have been identified in 126 genera, with (M) having the broadest taxonomic distribution among all bacteria and (B) having the broadest coverage among the Gram-negative genera. Phenicol resistance genes are organized into 37 groups and have been identified in 70 bacterial genera. The review provides the latest information on tetracycline and phenicol resistance genes, including their association with mobile genetic elements in bacteria of environmental, medical, and veterinary relevance. Knowing what specific antibiotic-resistance genes (ARGs) are found in specific bacterial species and/or genera is critical when using a selective suite of ARGs for detection or surveillance studies. As detection methods move to molecular techniques, our knowledge about which type of bacteria carry which resistance gene(s) will become more important to ensure that the whole spectrum of bacteria are included in future surveillance studies. This review provides information needed to integrate the biology, taxonomy, and ecology of tetracycline- and phenicol-resistant bacteria and their resistance genes so that informative surveillance strategies can be developed and the correct genes selected.

  8. Global Establishment Risk of Economically Important Fruit Fly Species (Tephritidae)

    PubMed Central

    Qin, Yujia; Paini, Dean R.; Wang, Cong; Fang, Yan; Li, Zhihong

    2015-01-01

    The global invasion of Tephritidae (fruit flies) attracts a great deal of attention in the field of plant quarantine and invasion biology because of their economic importance. Predicting which one in hundreds of potential invasive fruit fly species is most likely to establish in a region presents a significant challenge, but can be facilitated using a self organising map (SOM), which is able to analyse species associations to rank large numbers of species simultaneously with an index of establishment. A global presence/absence dataset including 180 economically significant fruit fly species in 118 countries was analysed using a SOM. We compare and contrast ranked lists from six countries selected from each continent, and also show that those countries geographically close were clustered together by the SOM analysis because they have similar fruit fly assemblages. These closely clustered countries therefore represent greater threats to each other as sources of invasive fruit fly species. Finally, we indicate how this SOM method could be utilized as an initial screen to support prioritizing fruit fly species for further research into their potential to invade a region. PMID:25588025

  9. Global establishment risk of economically important fruit fly species (Tephritidae).

    PubMed

    Qin, Yujia; Paini, Dean R; Wang, Cong; Fang, Yan; Li, Zhihong

    2015-01-01

    The global invasion of Tephritidae (fruit flies) attracts a great deal of attention in the field of plant quarantine and invasion biology because of their economic importance. Predicting which one in hundreds of potential invasive fruit fly species is most likely to establish in a region presents a significant challenge, but can be facilitated using a self organising map (SOM), which is able to analyse species associations to rank large numbers of species simultaneously with an index of establishment. A global presence/absence dataset including 180 economically significant fruit fly species in 118 countries was analysed using a SOM. We compare and contrast ranked lists from six countries selected from each continent, and also show that those countries geographically close were clustered together by the SOM analysis because they have similar fruit fly assemblages. These closely clustered countries therefore represent greater threats to each other as sources of invasive fruit fly species. Finally, we indicate how this SOM method could be utilized as an initial screen to support prioritizing fruit fly species for further research into their potential to invade a region.

  10. Comparative demography of commercially important parrotfish species from Micronesia.

    PubMed

    Taylor, B M; Choat, J H

    2014-02-01

    Fishery-independent sampling was used to determine growth patterns, life span, mortality rates and timing of maturation and sex change in 12 common parrotfishes (Labridae: tribe Scarinae) from five genera (Calotomus, Cetoscarus, Chlorurus, Hipposcarus and Scarus) in Micronesia. Interspecific variation in life-history traits was explored using multivariate analysis. All species displayed strong sex-specific patterns of length-at-age among which males reached larger asymptotic lengths. There was a high level of correlation among life-history traits across species. Relationships between length-based and age-based variables were weakest, with a tenuous link between maximum body size and life span. Cluster analysis based on similarities among life-history traits demonstrated that species were significantly grouped at two major levels. The first grouping was driven by length-based variables (lengths at maturity and sex change and maximum length) and separated the small- and large-bodied species. Within these, species were grouped by age-based variables (age at maturity, mortality and life span). Groupings based on demographic and life-history features were independent of phylogenetic relationships at the given taxonomic level. The results reiterate that body size is an important characteristic differentiating species, but interspecific variation in age-based traits complicates its use as a life-history proxy. Detailed life-history metrics should facilitate future quantitative assessments of vulnerability to overexploitation in multispecies fisheries.

  11. Cymbopogon species; ethnopharmacology, phytochemistry and the pharmacological importance.

    PubMed

    Avoseh, Opeyemi; Oyedeji, Opeoluwa; Rungqu, Pamela; Nkeh-Chungag, Benedicta; Oyedeji, Adebola

    2015-04-23

    Cymbopogon genus is a member of the family of Gramineae which are herbs known worldwide for their high essential oil content. They are widely distributed across all continents where they are used for various purposes. The commercial and medicinal uses of the various species of Cymbopogon are well documented. Ethnopharmacology evidence shows that they possess a wide array of properties that justifies their use for pest control, in cosmetics and as anti-inflammation agents. These plants may also hold promise as potent anti-tumor and chemopreventive drugs. The chemo-types from this genus have been used as biomarkers for their identification and classification. Pharmacological applications of Cymbopogon citratus are well exploited, though studies show that other species may also useful pharmaceutically. Hence this literature review intends to discuss these species and explore their potential economic importance.

  12. Modern taxonomy of biotechnologically important Aspergillus and Penicillium species.

    PubMed

    Houbraken, Jos; de Vries, Ronald P; Samson, Robert A

    2014-01-01

    Taxonomy is a dynamic discipline and name changes of fungi with biotechnological, industrial, or medical importance are often difficult to understand for researchers in the applied field. Species belonging to the genera Aspergillus and Penicillium are commonly used or isolated, and inadequate taxonomy or uncertain nomenclature of these genera can therefore lead to tremendous confusion. Misidentification of strains used in biotechnology can be traced back to (1) recent changes in nomenclature, (2) new taxonomic insights, including description of new species, and/or (3) incorrect identifications. Changes in the recent published International Code of Nomenclature for Algae, Fungi and Plants will lead to numerous name changes of existing Aspergillus and Penicillium species and an overview of the current names of biotechnological important species is given. Furthermore, in (biotechnological) literature old and invalid names are still used, such as Aspergillus awamori, A. foetidus, A. kawachii, Talaromyces emersonii, Acremonium cellulolyticus, and Penicillium funiculosum. An overview of these and other species with their correct names is presented. Furthermore, the biotechnologically important species Talaromyces thermophilus is here combined in Thermomyces as Th. dupontii. The importance of Aspergillus, Penicillium, and related genera is also illustrated by the high number of undertaken genome sequencing projects. A number of these strains are incorrectly identified or atypical strains are selected for these projects. Recommendations for correct strain selection are given here. Phylogenetic analysis shows a close relationship between the genome-sequenced strains of Aspergillus, Penicillium, and Monascus. Talaromyces stipitatus and T. marneffei (syn. Penicillium marneffei) are closely related to Thermomyces lanuginosus and Th. dupontii (syn. Talaromyces thermophilus), and these species appear to be distantly related to Aspergillus and Penicillium. In the last part of

  13. Biorational agents--mechanism and importance in IPM and IRM programs for controlling agricultural pests.

    PubMed

    Ishaaya, I; Kontsedalov, S; Mazirov, D; Horowitz, A R

    2001-01-01

    Among the new approaches for controlling agricultural pests is the development of novel compounds affecting specific processes in insects such as chitin synthesis inhibitors, juvenile hormone mimics and ecdysone agonists. In addition, efforts have been made to develop compounds acting selectively on groups of insects by inhibiting or enhancing biochemical sites such as respiration (diafenthiuron), the nicotinyl acetylcholine receptors (imidacloprid and acetamiprid), the GABA receptors (avermectins), the salivary glands of sucking pests (pymetrozine) and others. Among the most recent novel insecticides with selective properties are novaluron, thiamethoxam, emamectin and spinosad. Novaluron (Rimon) is a novel chitin synthesis inhibitor that acts by both ingestion and contact. It is a powerful suppressor of lepidopteran larvae such as Spodoptera littoralis and Helicoverpa armigera (by ingestion) and of whiteflies such as Bemisia tabaci and Trialeurodes vaporariorum (by contact). Thiamethoxam (Actarn), a novel neonicotinoid acts specifically on aphids and whiteflies. Emamectin (Proclaim), an avermectin derivative acts on GABA receptor affecting diversity of insects such as mites, lepidopterans and thrips. Spinosad (Tracer) seems to act on both acetylcholine and GABA receptors affecting diversity of insect species and is considered an important agent for controlling the western flower thrips.

  14. Are all species necessary to reveal ecologically important patterns?

    PubMed

    Pos, Edwin; Guevara Andino, Juan Ernesto; Sabatier, Daniel; Molino, Jean-François; Pitman, Nigel; Mogollón, Hugo; Neill, David; Cerón, Carlos; Rivas, Gonzalo; Di Fiore, Anthony; Thomas, Raquel; Tirado, Milton; Young, Kenneth R; Wang, Ophelia; Sierra, Rodrigo; García-Villacorta, Roosevelt; Zagt, Roderick; Palacios, Walter; Aulestia, Milton; Ter Steege, Hans

    2014-12-01

    While studying ecological patterns at large scales, ecologists are often unable to identify all collections, forcing them to either omit these unidentified records entirely, without knowing the effect of this, or pursue very costly and time-consuming efforts for identifying them. These "indets" may be of critical importance, but as yet, their impact on the reliability of ecological analyses is poorly known. We investigated the consequence of omitting the unidentified records and provide an explanation for the results. We used three large-scale independent datasets, (Guyana/ Suriname, French Guiana, Ecuador) each consisting of records having been identified to a valid species name (identified morpho-species - IMS) and a number of unidentified records (unidentified morpho-species - UMS). A subset was created for each dataset containing only the IMS, which was compared with the complete dataset containing all morpho-species (AMS: = IMS + UMS) for the following analyses: species diversity (Fisher's alpha), similarity of species composition, Mantel test and ordination (NMDS). In addition, we also simulated an even larger number of unidentified records for all three datasets and analyzed the agreement between similarities again with these simulated datasets. For all analyses, results were extremely similar when using the complete datasets or the truncated subsets. IMS predicted ≥91% of the variation in AMS in all tests/analyses. Even when simulating a larger fraction of UMS, IMS predicted the results for AMS rather well. Using only IMS also out-performed using higher taxon data (genus-level identification) for similarity analyses. Finding a high congruence for all analyses when using IMS rather than AMS suggests that patterns of similarity and composition are very robust. In other words, having a large number of unidentified species in a dataset may not affect our conclusions as much as is often thought.

  15. The Importance of Species Name Synonyms in Literature Searches

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    The synonyms of biological species names are shown to be an important component in comprehensive searches of electronic scientific literature databases but they are not well leveraged within the major literature databases examined. For accepted or valid species names in the Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) which have synonyms in the system, and which are found in citations within PLoS, PMC, PubMed or Scopus, both the percentage of species for which citations will not be found if synonyms are not used, and the percentage increase in number of citations found by including synonyms are very often substantial. However, there is no correlation between the number of synonyms per species and the magnitude of the effect. Further, the number of citations found does not generally increase proportionally to the number of synonyms available. Users looking for literature on specific species across all of the resources investigated here are often missing large numbers of citations if they are not manually augmenting their searches with synonyms. Of course, missing citations can have serious consequences by effectively hiding critical information. Literature searches should include synonym relationships and a new web service in ITIS, with examples of how to apply it to this issue, was developed as a result of this study, and is here announced, to aide in this. PMID:27627118

  16. The importance of species name synonyms in literature searches

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Guala, Gerald

    2016-01-01

    The synonyms of biological species names are shown to be an important component in comprehensive searches of electronic scientific literature databases but they are not well leveraged within the major literature databases examined. For accepted or valid species names in the Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) which have synonyms in the system, and which are found in citations within PLoS, PMC, PubMed or Scopus, both the percentage of species for which citations will not be found if synonyms are not used, and the percentage increase in number of citations found by including synonyms are very often substantial. However, there is no correlation between the number of synonyms per species and the magnitude of the effect. Further, the number of citations found does not generally increase proportionally to the number of synonyms available. Users looking for literature on specific species across all of the resources investigated here are often missing large numbers of citations if they are not manually augmenting their searches with synonyms. Of course, missing citations can have serious consequences by effectively hiding critical information. Literature searches should include synonym relationships and a new web service in ITIS, with examples of how to apply it to this issue, was developed as a result of this study, and is here announced, to aide in this.

  17. The importance of comprehensive agricultural education in land-grant institutions: a historical perspective.

    PubMed

    Grant, P M; Field, T G; Green, R D; Rollin, B E

    2000-06-01

    Any thorough examination of the present and future of agricultural education must certainly begin with a look into its past. Since the creation of the United States, many leading American philosophers have viewed a strong agrarian culture as the bedrock of American vigor. These same philosophers repeatedly noted the significance of comprehensive agricultural education to a nation rich in agricultural wealth. The signing of the Agricultural Colleges Act legitimized the concept of formal education in the agricultural sciences and provided funding for such education. The Act, which came to be known as the Morrill Act, after one of its primary authors, stressed the importance of comprehensive education. In fact, the inclusion of liberal studies was specifically mentioned in the Morrill Act and was defended repeatedly by Morrill himself. Comprehensive education prevented graduating technically trained students who were lacking in the basic outcomes of education--critical, comprehensive problem solving, cohesive thought, and effective communication. However, throughout history, the demands of a growing population coupled with rapid advancements in scientific knowledge led to a gradual move away from comprehensive education in agricultural sciences toward increasing specialization, resulting in more narrowly trained students. Today's agricultural students are technically well versed but often lack the skill and knowledge required for cohesive thought and critical problem solving. Addressing the multitude of challenges facing leaders in the future of agriculture requires much more than technical skill. These challenges require quick, yet careful thinkers and communicators who can respond to changing market structure and consumer demand in a dynamic way. Students who are a product of a conscious move toward amalgamation of burgeoning scientific knowledge and technical prowess with an integrative education emphasizing relationships between disciplines would better serve

  18. Montane and coastal species diversification in the economically important Mexican grasshopper genus Sphenarium (Orthoptera: Pyrgomorphidae).

    PubMed

    Pedraza-Lara, Carlos; Barrientos-Lozano, Ludivina; Rocha-Sánchez, Aurora Y; Zaldívar-Riverón, Alejandro

    2015-03-01

    The genus Sphenarium (Pyrgomorphidae) is a small group of grasshoppers endemic to México and Guatemala that are economically and culturally important both as a food source and as agricultural pests. However, its taxonomy has been largely neglected mainly due to its conserved interspecific external morphology and the considerable intraspecific variation in colour pattern of some taxa. Here we examined morphological as well as mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequence data to assess the species boundaries and evolutionary history in Sphenarium. Our morphological identification and DNA sequence-based species delimitation, carried out with three different approaches (DNA barcoding, general mixed Yule-coalescent model, Bayesian species delimitation), all recovered a higher number of putative species of Sphenarium than previously recognised. We unambiguously delimit seven species, and between five and ten additional species depending on the data/method analysed. Phylogenetic relationships within the genus strongly support two main clades, one exclusively montane, the other coastal. Divergence time estimates suggest late Miocene to Pliocene ages for the origin and most of the early diversification events in the genus, which were probably influenced by the formation of the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt. A series of Pleistocene events could have led to the current species diversification in both montane and coastal regions. This study not only reveals an overlooked species richness for the most popular edible insect in Mexico, but also highlights the influence of the dynamic geological and climatic history of the region in shaping its current diversity.

  19. The Endangered Species Act: Interfacing with Agricultural and Natural Ecosystems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Endangered Species Act (ESA) provides protective measures and a framework for establishing compliance criteria for actions that may affect species (and their habitat) listed under the Act. In many cases, the ESA can be effectively used under Section & of the Act, which provides procedures for c...

  20. Importance of wetland landscape structure to shorebirds wintering in an agricultural valley

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Taft, Oriane W.; Haig, Susan M.

    2006-01-01

    Only recently has the influence of landscape structure on habitat use been a research focus in wetland systems. During non-breeding periods when food can be locally limited, wetland spatial pattern across a landscape may be of great importance in determining wetland use. We studied the influence of landscape structure on abundances of wintering Dunlin (Calidris alpina) and Killdeer (Charadrius vociferus) observed on wetlands in the agricultural Willamette Valley of Oregon, USA, during two winters (1999a??2000, 2000a??2001) of differing rainfall. We examined (1) shorebird use within a sample of 100 km2 regions differing in landscape structure (hectares of shorebird habitat [wet, unvegetated]) and (2) use of sites differing in landscape context (area of shorebird habitat within a species-defined radius). For use of sites, we also assessed the influence of two local characteristics: percent of soil exposed and area of wet habitat. We analyzed data using linear regression and information-theoretic modeling. During the dry winter (2000a??2001), Dunlin were attracted to regions with more wetland habitat and their abundances at sites increased with greater area of shorebird habitat within both the site and the surrounding landscape. In contrast, Dunlin abundances at sites were related to availability of habitat at only a local scale during the wet winter (1999a??2000). Regional habitat availability was of little importance in predicting Killdeer distributions, and Killdeer site use appeared unrelated to habitat distributions at both landscape and local scales. Results suggest prioritizing sites for conservation that are located in areas with high wetland coverage.

  1. Estimating the Importance of Private Adaptation to Climate Change in Agriculture: A Review of Empirical Methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moore, F.; Burke, M.

    2015-12-01

    A wide range of studies using a variety of methods strongly suggest that climate change will have a negative impact on agricultural production in many areas. Farmers though should be able to learn about a changing climate and to adjust what they grow and how they grow it in order to reduce these negative impacts. However, it remains unclear how effective these private (autonomous) adaptations will be, or how quickly they will be adopted. Constraining the uncertainty on this adaptation is important for understanding the impacts of climate change on agriculture. Here we review a number of empirical methods that have been proposed for understanding the rate and effectiveness of private adaptation to climate change. We compare these methods using data on agricultural yields in the United States and western Europe.

  2. Rapid Identification of Candida Species and Other Clinically Important Yeast Species by Flow Cytometry†

    PubMed Central

    Page, Brent T.; Kurtzman, Cletus P.

    2005-01-01

    Two rapid diagnostic assays, utilizing two different Luminex flow cytometry methods, were developed for identification of clinically important ascomycetous yeast species. Direct hybridization and allele-specific primer extension methods were both successful in establishing a DNA-based assay that can rapidly and accurately identify Candida albicans, Candida krusei, Candida parapsilosis, Candida glabrata, and Candida tropicalis as well as other clinical species. The direct hybridization assay was designed to identify a total of 19 ascomycetous yeast species, and the allele-specific primer extension assay was designed to identify a total of 34 species. Probes were validated against 438 strains representing 303 species. From culture to identification, the allele-specific primer extension method takes 8 h and the direct hybridization method takes less than 5 h to complete. These assays represent comprehensive, rapid tests that are well suited for the clinical laboratory. PMID:16145099

  3. Comparative genomics of Clavibacter michiganensis subspecies, pathogens of important agricultural crops

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    Subspecies of Clavibacter michiganensis are important phytobacterial pathogens causing devastating diseases in several agricultural crops. The genome organizations of these pathogens are poorly understood. Here, the complete genomes of 5 subspecies (C. michiganensis subsp. michiganensis, Cmi; C. michiganensis subsp. sepedonicus, Cms; C. michiganensis subsp. nebraskensis, Cmn; C. michiganensis subsp. insidiosus, Cmi and C. michiganensis subsp. capsici, Cmc) were analyzed. This study assessed the taxonomic position of the subspecies based on 16S rRNA and genome-based DNA homology and concludes that there is ample evidence to elevate some of the subspecies to species-level. Comparative genomics analysis indicated distinct genomic features evident on the DNA structural atlases and annotation features. Based on orthologous gene analysis, about 2300 CDSs are shared across all the subspecies; and Cms showed the highest number of subspecies-specific CDS, most of which are mobile elements suggesting that Cms could be more prone to translocation of foreign genes. Cms and Cmi had the highest number of pseudogenes, an indication of potential degenerating genomes. The stress response factors that may be involved in cold/heat shock, detoxification, oxidative stress, osmoregulation, and carbon utilization are outlined. For example, the wco-cluster encoding for extracellular polysaccharide II is highly conserved while the sucrose-6-phosphate hydrolase that catalyzes the hydrolysis of sucrose-6-phosphate yielding glucose-6-phosphate and fructose is highly divergent. A unique second form of the enzyme is only present in Cmn NCPPB 2581. Also, twenty-eight plasmid-borne CDSs in the other subspecies were found to have homologues in the chromosomal genome of Cmn which is known not to carry plasmids. These CDSs include pathogenesis-related factors such as Endocellulases E1 and Beta-glucosidase. The results presented here provide an insight of the functional organization of the genomes of

  4. COMPARATIVE PHARMACOGNOSY OF MEDICINALLY IMPORTANT INDIAN VITEX SPECIES

    PubMed Central

    Rao, R. V Krishna; Satyanarayana, T.; Jena, Ranjit

    1996-01-01

    Vitex genera is reputed for their medicinal properties. Of the 12 species reported to be present in Indian only 8 species are medicinally useful. Of these six species were colled and their pharmacognostic characters were studied and described. PMID:22556769

  5. DNA Microarray Detection of 18 Important Human Blood Protozoan Species

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Jun-Hu; Feng, Xin-Yu; Chen, Shao-Hong; Cai, Yu-Chun; Lu, Yan; Zhou, Xiao-Nong; Chen, Jia-Xu; Hu, Wei

    2016-01-01

    Background Accurate detection of blood protozoa from clinical samples is important for diagnosis, treatment and control of related diseases. In this preliminary study, a novel DNA microarray system was assessed for the detection of Plasmodium, Leishmania, Trypanosoma, Toxoplasma gondii and Babesia in humans, animals, and vectors, in comparison with microscopy and PCR data. Developing a rapid, simple, and convenient detection method for protozoan detection is an urgent need. Methodology/Principal Findings The microarray assay simultaneously identified 18 species of common blood protozoa based on the differences in respective target genes. A total of 20 specific primer pairs and 107 microarray probes were selected according to conserved regions which were designed to identify 18 species in 5 blood protozoan genera. The positive detection rate of the microarray assay was 91.78% (402/438). Sensitivity and specificity for blood protozoan detection ranged from 82.4% (95%CI: 65.9% ~ 98.8%) to 100.0% and 95.1% (95%CI: 93.2% ~ 97.0%) to 100.0%, respectively. Positive predictive value (PPV) and negative predictive value (NPV) ranged from 20.0% (95%CI: 2.5% ~ 37.5%) to 100.0% and 96.8% (95%CI: 95.0% ~ 98.6%) to 100.0%, respectively. Youden index varied from 0.82 to 0.98. The detection limit of the DNA microarrays ranged from 200 to 500 copies/reaction, similar to PCR findings. The concordance rate between microarray data and DNA sequencing results was 100%. Conclusions/Significance Overall, the newly developed microarray platform provides a convenient, highly accurate, and reliable clinical assay for the determination of blood protozoan species. PMID:27911895

  6. Importance of impacts scenarios for the adaptation of agriculture to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zullo, J.; Macedo, C.; Pinto, H. S.; Assad, E. D.; Koga Vicente, A.

    2012-12-01

    The great possibility that the climate is already changing, and the most drastic way possible, increases the challenge of agricultural engineering, especially in environmentally vulnerable areas and in regions where agriculture has a high economic and social importance. Knowledge of potential impacts that may be caused by changes in water and thermal regimes in coming decades is increasingly strategic, as they allow the development of techniques to adapt agriculture to climate change and therefore minimizes the risk of undesirable impacts, for example, in food and nutritional security. Thus, the main objective of this paper is to describe a way to generate impacts scenarios caused by anomalies of precipitation and temperature in the definition of climate risk zoning of an agricultural crop very important in the tropics, such as the sugar cane, especially in central-southern Brazil, which is one of its main world producers. A key point here is the choice of the climate model to be used, considering that 23 different models were used in the fourth IPCC report published in 2007. The number and range of available models requires the definition of criteria for choosing the most suitable for the preparation of the impacts scenarios. One way proposed and used in this work is based on the definition of two groups of models according to 27 technical attributes of them. The clustering of 23 models in two groups, with a model representing each group (UKMO_HadCM3 and MIROC3.2_medres), assists the generation and comparison of impacts scenarios, making them more representative and useful. Another important aspect in the generation of impacts scenarios is the estimate of the relative importance of the anomalies of precipitation and temperature, which are the most commonly used. To assess the relative importance of the anomalies are generated scenarios considering an anomaly at a time and both together. The impacts scenarios for a high emission of greenhouse gases (A2), from 2010

  7. 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.

  8. Agriculture

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    The EPA Agriculture Resource Directory offers comprehensive, easy-to-understand information about environmental stewardship on farms and ranches; commonsense, flexible approaches that are both environmentally protective and agriculturally sound.

  9. Areas of increasing agricultural abandonment overlap the distribution of previously common, currently threatened plant species.

    PubMed

    Osawa, Takeshi; Kohyama, Kazunori; Mitsuhashi, Hiromune

    2013-01-01

    Human-driven land-use changes increasingly threaten biodiversity. In agricultural ecosystems, abandonment of former farmlands constitutes a major land-use shift. We examined the relationships between areas in which agriculture has been abandoned and the distribution records of threatened plant species across Japan. We selected 23 plant species that are currently identified as threatened but were previously common in the country as indicators of threatened plant species. The areas of abandoned farmlands within the distribution ranges of the indicator species were significantly larger than the proportion of abandoned farmland area across the whole country. Also, abandoned farmland areas were positively correlated with the occurrence of indicator species. Therefore, sections of agricultural landscape that are increasingly becoming abandoned and the distribution ranges of indicator species overlapped. These results suggest that abandoned farmland areas contain degraded or preferred habitats of threatened plant species. We propose that areas experiencing increased abandonment of farmland can be divided into at least two categories: those that threaten the existence of threatened species and those that provide habitats for these threatened species.

  10. Recent trends/challenges in irrigated agriculture-Why is irrigation important in a discussion of agricultural migration?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    United States agriculture contributes 16% of the $9 trillion gross domestic product, 8% of U.S. exports, and 17% of employment while providing food to all citizens, despite the fact that only 2% of the U.S. workforces is on farms. Agricultural productivity has grown by 240% since 1948, while agricul...

  11. Regulatory phenotyping reveals important diversity within the species Lactococcus lactis.

    PubMed

    Bachmann, Herwig; Starrenburg, Marjo J C; Dijkstra, Annereinou; Molenaar, Douwe; Kleerebezem, Michiel; Rademaker, Jan L W; van Hylckama Vlieg, Johan E T

    2009-09-01

    The diversity in regulatory phenotypes among a collection of 84 Lactococcus lactis strains isolated from dairy and nondairy origin was explored. The specific activities of five enzymes were assessed in cell extracts of all strains grown in two different media, a nutritionally rich broth and a relatively poor chemically defined medium. The five investigated enzymes, branched chain aminotransferase (BcaT), aminopeptidase N (PepN), X-prolyl dipeptidyl peptidase (PepX), alpha-hydroxyisocaproic acid dehydrogenase (HicDH), and esterase, are involved in nitrogen and fatty acid metabolism and catalyze key steps in the production of important dairy flavor compounds. The investigated cultures comprise 75 L. lactis subsp. lactis isolates (including 7 L. lactis subsp. lactis biovar diacetylactis isolates) and 9 L. lactis subsp. cremoris isolates. All L. lactis subsp. cremoris and 22 L. lactis subsp. lactis (including 6 L. lactis subsp. lactis biovar diacetylactis) cultures originated from a dairy environment. All other cultures originated from (fermented) plant materials and were isolated at different geographic locations. Correlation analysis of specific enzyme activities revealed significantly different regulatory phenotypes for dairy and nondairy isolates. The enzyme activities in the two investigated media were in general poorly correlated and revealed a high degree of regulatory diversity within this collection of closely related strains. To the best of our knowledge, these results represent the most extensive diversity analysis of regulatory phenotypes within a single bacterial species to date. The presented findings underline the importance of the availability of screening procedures for, e.g., industrially relevant enzyme activities in models closely mimicking application conditions. Moreover, they corroborate the notion that regulatory changes are important drivers of evolution.

  12. Diversity of the Neglected and Underutilized Crop Species of Importance in Benin

    PubMed Central

    Dansi, A.; Vodouhè, R.; Azokpota, P.; Yedomonhan, H.; Assogba, P.; Adjatin, A.; Loko, Y. L.; Dossou-Aminon, I.; Akpagana, K.

    2012-01-01

    Many of the plant species that are cultivated for food across the world are neglected and underutilized. To assess their diversity in Benin and identify the priority species and establish their research needs, a survey was conducted in 50 villages distributed throughout the country. The study revealed 41 neglected and underutilized crop species (NUCS) among which 19 were identified as of priority base on 10 criteria among which included their extent and degree of consumption. Reasons for neglect vary with the producers and the agricultural technicians. Market surveys revealed that NUCS are important source of household incomes and substantially contribute to poverty reduction. Review of the literature available revealed that most of the species are rich in nutrients and have some proven medicinal values and the promotion of their use would help in combating malnutrition and improving the health status of the local populations. The knowledge gaps and research needs are immense on most of the species identified as no concrete scientific data is nationally available. In terms of research, almost all has to be done starting from basic ethnobotanical investigation. The results will help the scientists and students willing to conduct research on NUCS in Benin to better orient their research programs. PMID:22593712

  13. Diversity of the neglected and underutilized crop species of importance in Benin.

    PubMed

    Dansi, A; Vodouhè, R; Azokpota, P; Yedomonhan, H; Assogba, P; Adjatin, A; Loko, Y L; Dossou-Aminon, I; Akpagana, K

    2012-01-01

    Many of the plant species that are cultivated for food across the world are neglected and underutilized. To assess their diversity in Benin and identify the priority species and establish their research needs, a survey was conducted in 50 villages distributed throughout the country. The study revealed 41 neglected and underutilized crop species (NUCS) among which 19 were identified as of priority base on 10 criteria among which included their extent and degree of consumption. Reasons for neglect vary with the producers and the agricultural technicians. Market surveys revealed that NUCS are important source of household incomes and substantially contribute to poverty reduction. Review of the literature available revealed that most of the species are rich in nutrients and have some proven medicinal values and the promotion of their use would help in combating malnutrition and improving the health status of the local populations. The knowledge gaps and research needs are immense on most of the species identified as no concrete scientific data is nationally available. In terms of research, almost all has to be done starting from basic ethnobotanical investigation. The results will help the scientists and students willing to conduct research on NUCS in Benin to better orient their research programs.

  14. The importance of climate change and nitrogen use efficiency for future nitrous oxide emissions from agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kanter, David R.; Zhang, Xin; Mauzerall, Denise L.; Malyshev, Sergey; Shevliakova, Elena

    2016-09-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O) is an important greenhouse gas and ozone depleting substance. Previous projections of agricultural N2O (the dominant anthropogenic source) show emissions changing in tandem, or at a faster rate than changes in nitrogen (N) consumption. However, recent studies suggest that the carbon dioxide (CO2) fertilization effect may increase plant N uptake, which could decrease soil N losses and dampen increases in N2O. To evaluate this hypothesis at a global scale, we use a process-based land model with a coupled carbon-nitrogen cycle to examine how changes in climatic factors, land-use, and N application rates could affect agricultural N2O emissions by 2050. Assuming little improvement in N use efficiency (NUE), the model projects a 24%-31% increase in global agricultural N2O emissions by 2040-2050 depending on the climate scenario—a relatively moderate increase compared to the projected increases in N inputs (42%-44%) and previously published emissions projections (38%-75%). This occurs largely because the CO2 fertilization effect enhances plant N uptake in several regions, which subsequently dampens N2O emissions. And yet, improvements in NUE could still deliver important environmental benefits by 2050: equivalent to 10 Pg CO2 equivalent and 0.6 Tg ozone depletion potential.

  15. Comparisons of diazotrophic communities in native and agricultural desert ecosystems reveal plants as important drivers in diversity.

    PubMed

    Köberl, Martina; Erlacher, Armin; Ramadan, Elshahat M; El-Arabi, Tarek F; Müller, Henry; Bragina, Anastasia; Berg, Gabriele

    2016-02-01

    Diazotrophs provide the only biological source of fixed atmospheric nitrogen in the biosphere. Although they are the key player for plant-available nitrogen, less is known about their diversity and potential importance in arid ecosystems. We investigated the nitrogenase gene diversity in native and agricultural desert soil as well as within root-associated microbiota of medicinal plants grown in Egypt through the combination of nifH-specific qPCR, fingerprints, amplicon pyrosequencing and fluorescence in situ hybridization-confocal laser scanning microscopy. Although the diazotrophic microbiota were characterized by generally high abundances and diversity, statistically significant differences were found between both soils, the different microhabitats, and between the investigated plants (Matricaria chamomilla L., Calendula officinalis L. and Solanum distichum Schumach. and Thonn.). We observed a considerable community shift from desert to agriculturally used soil that demonstrated a higher abundance and diversity in the agro-ecosystem. The endorhiza was characterized by lower abundances and only a subset of species when compared to the rhizosphere. While the microbiomes of the Asteraceae were similar and dominated by potential root-nodulating rhizobia acquired primarily from soil, the perennial S. distichum generally formed associations with free-living nitrogen fixers. These results underline the importance of diazotrophs in desert ecosystems and additionally identify plants as important drivers in functional gene pool diversity.

  16. Comparisons of diazotrophic communities in native and agricultural desert ecosystems reveal plants as important drivers in diversity

    PubMed Central

    Köberl, Martina; Erlacher, Armin; Ramadan, Elshahat M.; El-Arabi, Tarek F.; Müller, Henry; Bragina, Anastasia; Berg, Gabriele

    2015-01-01

    Diazotrophs provide the only biological source of fixed atmospheric nitrogen in the biosphere. Although they are the key player for plant-available nitrogen, less is known about their diversity and potential importance in arid ecosystems. We investigated the nitrogenase gene diversity in native and agricultural desert soil as well as within root-associated microbiota of medicinal plants grown in Egypt through the combination of nifH-specific qPCR, fingerprints, amplicon pyrosequencing and fluorescence in situ hybridization–confocal laser scanning microscopy. Although the diazotrophic microbiota were characterized by generally high abundances and diversity, statistically significant differences were found between both soils, the different microhabitats, and between the investigated plants (Matricaria chamomilla L., Calendula officinalis L. and Solanum distichum Schumach. and Thonn.). We observed a considerable community shift from desert to agriculturally used soil that demonstrated a higher abundance and diversity in the agro-ecosystem. The endorhiza was characterized by lower abundances and only a subset of species when compared to the rhizosphere. While the microbiomes of the Asteraceae were similar and dominated by potential root-nodulating rhizobia acquired primarily from soil, the perennial S. distichum generally formed associations with free-living nitrogen fixers. These results underline the importance of diazotrophs in desert ecosystems and additionally identify plants as important drivers in functional gene pool diversity. PMID:26705571

  17. Importance of Stream Denitrification in the Nitrogen Mass Balance of a Midwestern Agricultural Region

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    David, M. B.; Royer, T. V.; Opdyke, M. R.; Tank, J. L.

    2005-05-01

    Agricultural regions of the Midwestern US have large N fluxes as a result of inputs from fertilizer and biological fixation, and outputs through rivers and grain harvest. These inputs and outputs are not balanced, however, and denitrification has been suggested to be an important loss mechanism. We examined the role of in-stream denitrification in the N mass balance of Illinois, a predominantly agricultural region. Nitrate concentrations in streams were often >10 mg nitrate-N L-1, suggesting denitrification was not N-limited throughout most of the year. Denitrification rates were measured at many headwater stream sites throughout the year, in both sediments and primary producer habitat, under different geomorphic conditions. Although in-stream denitrification rates were generally high, hydraulic retention time limited the importance of denitrification in terms of export on an annual basis. Geomorphology was important in explaining rates, but extensive channelization has eliminated most in-stream structures, which could have more effectively reduced stream export of N. Therefore, stream denitrification was only minor sink for N and most nitrate in these headwater sites was exported downstream. In the overall mass balance of N, reservoir and in-field denitrification are thought to be much more important than in-stream denitrification.

  18. Soil acidification and the importance of liming agricultural soils with particular reference to the United Kingdom.

    PubMed

    Goulding, K W T

    2016-09-01

    Soil acidification is caused by a number of factors including acidic precipitation and the deposition from the atmosphere of acidifying gases or particles, such as sulphur dioxide, ammonia and nitric acid. The most important causes of soil acidification on agricultural land, however, are the application of ammonium-based fertilizers and urea, elemental S fertilizer and the growth of legumes. Acidification causes the loss of base cations, an increase in aluminium saturation and a decline in crop yields; severe acidification can cause nonreversible clay mineral dissolution and a reduction in cation exchange capacity, accompanied by structural deterioration. Soil acidity is ameliorated by applying lime or other acid-neutralizing materials. 'Liming' also reduces N2O emissions, but this is more than offset by CO 2 emissions from the lime as it neutralizes acidity. Because crop plants vary in their tolerance to acidity and plant nutrients have different optimal pH ranges, target soil pH values in the UK are set at 6.5 (5.8 in peaty soils) for cropped land and 6.0 (5.3 in peaty soils) for grassland. Agricultural lime products can be sold as 'EC Fertiliser Liming Materials' but, although vital for soil quality and agricultural production, liming tends to be strongly influenced by the economics of farming. Consequently, much less lime is being applied in the UK than required, and many arable and grassland soils are below optimum pH.

  19. Sensitivity to zinc of Mediterranean woody species important for restoration.

    PubMed

    Disante, Karen B; Fuentes, David; Cortina, Jordi

    2010-04-15

    Heavy metals have increased in natural woodlands and shrublands over the last several decades as a consequence of anthropogenic activities. However, our knowledge of the effects of these elements on woody species is scarce. In this study, we examined the responses of six Mediterranean woody species to increasing levels of zinc in hydroponic culture and discussed the possible implications for the restoration of contaminated sites. The species used, Pinus pinea L., Pinus pinaster Ait., Pinus halepensis Mill., Tetraclinis articulata (Vahl) Mast., Rhamnus alaternus L. and Quercus suber L. represent a climatic gradient from dry sub-humid to semi-arid conditions. Zinc concentrations in shoots ranged from 53 microg g(-1) in Q. suber to 382 microg g(-1) in T. articulata and were well below the levels found in roots. Zinc inhibited root elongation and root biomass and changed the root length distribution per diameter class, but the magnitude of the effects was species-specific. Only P. halepensis and Q. suber showed toxicity symptoms in aboveground parts. Species more characteristic from xeric environments (T. articulata, R. alaternus and P. halepensis) were more sensitive to zinc than species from mesic environments (Q. suber, P. pinaster and P. pinea). According to the Zn responses and bioaccumulation, Q. suber P. pinea and P. halepensis are the best candidates for field trials to test the value of woody species to restore contaminated sites. None of the species tested seemed suitable for phytoremediation.

  20. Historic Mining and Agriculture as Indicators of Occurrence and Abundance of Widespread Invasive Plant Species.

    PubMed

    Calinger, Kellen; Calhoon, Elisabeth; Chang, Hsiao-Chi; Whitacre, James; Wenzel, John; Comita, Liza; Queenborough, Simon

    2015-01-01

    Anthropogenic disturbances often change ecological communities and provide opportunities for non-native species invasion. Understanding the impacts of disturbances on species invasion is therefore crucial for invasive species management. We used generalized linear mixed effects models to explore the influence of land-use history and distance to roads on the occurrence and abundance of two invasive plant species (Rosa multiflora and Berberis thunbergii) in a 900-ha deciduous forest in the eastern U.S.A., the Powdermill Nature Reserve. Although much of the reserve has been continuously forested since at least 1939, aerial photos revealed a variety of land-uses since then including agriculture, mining, logging, and development. By 2008, both R. multiflora and B. thunbergii were widespread throughout the reserve (occurring in 24% and 13% of 4417 10-m diameter regularly-placed vegetation plots, respectively) with occurrence and abundance of each varying significantly with land-use history. Rosa multiflora was more likely to occur in historically farmed, mined, logged or developed plots than in plots that remained forested, (log odds of 1.8 to 3.0); Berberis thunbergii was more likely to occur in plots with agricultural, mining, or logging history than in plots without disturbance (log odds of 1.4 to 2.1). Mining, logging, and agriculture increased the probability that R. multiflora had >10% cover while only past agriculture was related to cover of B. thunbergii. Proximity to roads was positively correlated with the occurrence of R. multiflora (a 0.26 increase in the log odds for every 1-m closer) but not B. thunbergii, and roads had no impact on the abundance of either species. Our results indicated that a wide variety of disturbances may aid the introduction of invasive species into new habitats, while high-impact disturbances such as agriculture and mining increase the likelihood of high abundance post-introduction.

  1. Proximal Soil Sensing – A Contribution for Species Habitat Distribution Modelling of Earthworms in Agricultural Soils?

    PubMed Central

    Schirrmann, Michael; Joschko, Monika; Gebbers, Robin; Kramer, Eckart; Zörner, Mirjam; Barkusky, Dietmar; Timmer, Jens

    2016-01-01

    Background Earthworms are important for maintaining soil ecosystem functioning and serve as indicators of soil fertility. However, detection of earthworms is time-consuming, which hinders the assessment of earthworm abundances with high sampling density over entire fields. Recent developments of mobile terrestrial sensor platforms for proximal soil sensing (PSS) provided new tools for collecting dense spatial information of soils using various sensing principles. Yet, the potential of PSS for assessing earthworm habitats is largely unexplored. This study investigates whether PSS data contribute to the spatial prediction of earthworm abundances in species distribution models of agricultural soils. Methodology/Principal Findings Proximal soil sensing data, e.g., soil electrical conductivity (EC), pH, and near infrared absorbance (NIR), were collected in real-time in a field with two management strategies (reduced tillage / conventional tillage) and sandy to loam soils. PSS was related to observations from a long-term (11 years) earthworm observation study conducted at 42 plots. Earthworms were sampled from 0.5 x 0.5 x 0.2 m³ soil blocks and identified to species level. Sensor data were highly correlated with earthworm abundances observed in reduced tillage but less correlated with earthworm abundances observed in conventional tillage. This may indicate that management influences the sensor-earthworm relationship. Generalized additive models and state-space models showed that modelling based on data fusion from EC, pH, and NIR sensors produced better results than modelling without sensor data or data from just a single sensor. Regarding the individual earthworm species, particular sensor combinations were more appropriate than others due to the different habitat requirements of the earthworms. Earthworm species with soil-specific habitat preferences were spatially predicted with higher accuracy by PSS than more ubiquitous species. Conclusions/Significance Our

  2. Uncertainties in predicting species distributions under climate change: a case study using Tetranychus evansi (Acari: Tetranychidae), a widespread agricultural pest.

    PubMed

    Meynard, Christine N; Migeon, Alain; Navajas, Maria

    2013-01-01

    Many species are shifting their distributions due to climate change and to increasing international trade that allows dispersal of individuals across the globe. In the case of agricultural pests, such range shifts may heavily impact agriculture. Species distribution modelling may help to predict potential changes in pest distributions. However, these modelling strategies are subject to large uncertainties coming from different sources. Here we used the case of the tomato red spider mite (Tetranychus evansi), an invasive pest that affects some of the most important agricultural crops worldwide, to show how uncertainty may affect forecasts of the potential range of the species. We explored three aspects of uncertainty: (1) species prevalence; (2) modelling method; and (3) variability in environmental responses between mites belonging to two invasive clades of T. evansi. Consensus techniques were used to forecast the potential range of the species under current and two different climate change scenarios for 2080, and variance between model projections were mapped to identify regions of high uncertainty. We revealed large predictive variations linked to all factors, although prevalence had a greater influence than the statistical model once the best modelling strategies were selected. The major areas threatened under current conditions include tropical countries in South America and Africa, and temperate regions in North America, the Mediterranean basin and Australia. Under future scenarios, the threat shifts towards northern Europe and some other temperate regions in the Americas, whereas tropical regions in Africa present a reduced risk. Analysis of niche overlap suggests that the current differential distribution of mites of the two clades of T. evansi can be partially attributed to environmental niche differentiation. Overall this study shows how consensus strategies and analysis of niche overlap can be used jointly to draw conclusions on invasive threat

  3. Pollinators of Richardia grandiflora (Rubiaceae): an Important Ruderal Species for Bees.

    PubMed

    Cruz, R M; Martins, C F

    2015-02-01

    Ruderal species may provide pollen and nectar to maintain the pollinators of crops in periods of floral resource shortage. The knowledge about the floral biology of these plant species and their interaction with insects is important for management strategies of agricultural systems. The study was carried out at an experimental research station in two different periods (August 2010-April 2011 and August 2012-January 2013). Floral biology was studied, and the reproductive system and reproductive efficacy (RE) were analyzed using controlled pollination experiments. Furthermore, floral visitors and pollination were identified and quantified. Reproductive success obtained in the open pollination and cross-pollination experiments was higher than those obtained in spontaneous self, hand self, and wind pollination. Richardia grandiflora bloomed throughout the experimental period, and flowers were visited by Coleoptera, Diptera, Hymenoptera, and Lepidoptera, which were observed foraging for pollen and/or nectar. Among the floral visitors, bees were the richest and most frequent group and often contacted anthers and stigmas during visits. Africanized honeybees touched the floral reproductive structures in all visits, and their frequency may be related to changes in the reproductive efficacy between the study periods. Pollinator species of crops cultivated at the experimental research station were frequent bee visitors of R. grandiflora. We demonstrated that R. grandiflora requires cross-pollination and biotic pollen vectors. Among floral visitors, bees are the main pollinators, especially the Africanized honeybees. R. grandiflora can be considered an important ruderal species for maintaining bee pollinator populations at the study site, providing resources during the period that crops are not blooming.

  4. Plant growth promotion in cereal and leguminous agricultural important plants: from microorganism capacities to crop production.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Montaño, F; Alías-Villegas, C; Bellogín, R A; del Cerro, P; Espuny, M R; Jiménez-Guerrero, I; López-Baena, F J; Ollero, F J; Cubo, T

    2014-01-01

    Plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) are free-living bacteria which actively colonize plant roots, exerting beneficial effects on plant development. The PGPR may (i) promote the plant growth either by using their own metabolism (solubilizing phosphates, producing hormones or fixing nitrogen) or directly affecting the plant metabolism (increasing the uptake of water and minerals), enhancing root development, increasing the enzymatic activity of the plant or "helping" other beneficial microorganisms to enhance their action on the plants; (ii) or may promote the plant growth by suppressing plant pathogens. These abilities are of great agriculture importance in terms of improving soil fertility and crop yield, thus reducing the negative impact of chemical fertilizers on the environment. The progress in the last decade in using PGPR in a variety of plants (maize, rice, wheat, soybean and bean) along with their mechanism of action are summarized and discussed here.

  5. The relative importance of microbial nitrate reduction processes in an agriculturally-impacted estuary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cardarelli, E.; Francis, C. A.

    2013-12-01

    Human activities are increasing reactive nitrogen levels worldwide. Reactive nitrogen exists largely as nitrate and may be ecologically harmful to nutrient-limited systems. Nitrate loadings to the environment may be transformed by the microbial nitrate reduction processes of denitrification (converting nitrate to dinitrogen gas), or of dissimilatory nitrate reduction to ammonium (DNRA) (allowing reactive nitrogen to persist). The predominant nitrate reduction pathway largely determines the nitrogen removal capacity of the estuary. Therefore, identifying the relative importance of denitrification and DNRA in a given system provides insight into how much nitrate is transformed to dinitrogen and ammonium. Estuary sediments often have high nitrate reduction rates, but the environmental factors that determine which process prevails are underexplored. Nitrate availability and salinity are thought to influence which nitrate reduction process predominates. Elkhorn Slough is a small California estuary that experiences a range of nitrate concentrations (0 to over 2,000 μM) and salinities (0 to 33.5) depending on the agricultural runoff introduced through the Old Salinas River and the tidal influence. This study investigates how the fluctuating nutrient and salinity conditions found over the diel cycle at the interface of the Old Salinas River and Elkhorn Slough influences the nitrogen transformation rates observed. Benthic denitrification and DNRA are evaluated using whole sediment core incubations amended with an overlying 15NO3- labeled pool. Rates of denitrification and DNRA in the sediment are calculated using the isotope pairing technique. The results of this research will help elucidate the relative importance of dissimilatory nitrate removal pathways in an agriculturally-impacted estuary and ultimately reveal whether anthropogenic nitrate inputs are preserved or removed from the system.

  6. Barcode identifiers as a practical tool for reliable species assignment of medically important black yeast species.

    PubMed

    Heinrichs, Guido; de Hoog, G Sybren; Haase, Gerhard

    2012-09-01

    Herpotrichiellaceous black yeasts and relatives comprise severe pathogens flanked by nonpathogenic environmental siblings. Reliable identification by conventional methods is notoriously difficult. Molecular identification is hampered by the sequence variability in the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) domain caused by difficult-to-sequence homopolymeric regions and by poor taxonomic attribution of sequences deposited in GenBank. Here, we present a potential solution using short barcode identifiers (27 to 50 bp) based on ITS2 ribosomal DNA (rDNA), which allows unambiguous definition of species-specific fragments. Starting from proven sequences of ex-type and authentic strains, we were able to describe 103 identifiers. Multiple BLAST searches of these proposed barcode identifiers in GenBank revealed uniqueness for 100 taxonomic entities, whereas the three remaining identifiers each matched with two entities, but the species of these identifiers could easily be discriminated by differences in the remaining ITS regions. Using the proposed barcode identifiers, a 4.1-fold increase of 100% matches in GenBank was achieved in comparison to the classical approach using the complete ITS sequences. The proposed barcode identifiers will be made accessible for the diagnostic laboratory in a permanently updated online database, thereby providing a highly practical, reliable, and cost-effective tool for identification of clinically important black yeasts and relatives.

  7. Specific and sensitive detection of Alcaligenes species from an agricultural environment.

    PubMed

    Nakano, Miyo; Niwa, Masumi; Nishimura, Norihiro

    2013-03-01

    A quantitative real-time PCR assay to specifically detect and quantify the genus Alcaligenes in samples from the agricultural environment, such as vegetables and farming soils, was developed. The minimum detection sensitivity was 106 fg of pure culture DNA, corresponding to DNA extracted from two cells of Alcaligenes faecalis. To evaluate the detection limit of A. faecalis, serially diluted genomic DNA from this organism was mixed with DNA extracted from soil and vegetables and then a standard curve was constructed. It was found that Alcaligenes species are present in the plant phytosphere at levels 10(2)-10(4) times lower than those in soil. The approach presented here will be useful for tracking or quantifying species of the genus Alcaligenes in the agricultural environment.

  8. Trichoderma Biodiversity of Agricultural Fields in East China Reveals a Gradient Distribution of Species

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Jing; Mao, Li-Juan; Feng, Xiao-Xiao; Zhang, Chu-Long; Lin, Fu-Cheng

    2016-01-01

    We surveyed the Trichoderma (Hypocreales, Ascomycota) biodiversity in agricultural fields in four major agricultural provinces of East China. Trichoderma strains were identified based on molecular approaches and morphological characteristics. In three sampled seasons (spring, summer and autumn), 2078 strains were isolated and identified to 17 known species: T. harzianum (429 isolates), T. asperellum (425), T. hamatum (397), T. virens (340), T. koningiopsis (248), T. brevicompactum (73), T. atroviride (73), T. fertile (26), T. longibrachiatum (22), T. pleuroticola (16), T. erinaceum (16), T. oblongisporum (2), T. polysporum (2), T. spirale (2), T. capillare (2), T. velutinum (2), and T. saturnisporum (1). T. harzianum, T. asperellum, T. hamatum, and T. virens were identified as the dominant species with dominance (Y) values of 0.057, 0.052, 0.048, and 0.039, respectively. The species amount, isolate numbers and the dominant species of Trichoderma varied between provinces. Zhejiang Province has shown the highest diversity, which was reflected in the highest species amount (14) and the highest Shannon–Wiener diversity index of Trichoderma haplotypes (1.46). We observed that relative frequencies of T. hamatum and T. koningiopsis under rice soil were higher than those under wheat and maize soil, indicating the preference of Trichoderma to different crops. Remarkable seasonal variation was shown, with summer exhibiting the highest biodiversity of the studied seasons. These results show that Trichoderma biodiversity in agricultural fields varies by region, crop, and season. Zhejiang Province (the southernmost province in the investigated area) had more T. hamatum than Shandong Province (the northernmost province), not only in isolate amounts but also in haplotype amounts. Furthermore, at haplotype level, only T. hamatum showed a gradient distribution from south to north in correspondence analysis among the four dominant species. The above results would contribute to the

  9. Gas-phase reactions of halogen species of atmospheric importance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heard, Anne C.

    A low-pressure discharge-flow technique, with various optical detection methods, has been used to determine bimolecular rate coefficients for a number of reactions in the gas-phase between OH radicals and organic halogen-containing molecules and between NO3 radicals and the iodine species I2 and I. These experiments have shown that: (1) the reaction of methyl iodide with OH accounts for approximately 2 percent of the removal of CH3I from the troposphere as compared with photolysis; (2) abstraction of I-atoms from a C-I bond by OH is probable in the gas-phase; (3) the halogen-containing anaesthetic substances halothane CF3CClBrH, enflurane CF2HOCF2CFClH, isoflurane CF2HOCClHCF3 and sevoflurane (CF3)2CHOCFH2 have significantly shorter tropospheric lifetimes than the fully halogenated CFCs and halons because of reaction with the OH radical and are thus unlikely to be transported up to the stratosphere where they could contribute to the depletion of ozone. Data obtained for reactions between OH and some 'CFC alternatives' along with measurements of the integrated absorption cross-sections of the compounds in the spectral region 800-1200 cm(exp -1) were used to calculate ozone depletion potentials (ODP) and greenhouse warming potentials relative to CFCl3 for each compound. The study of the reactions between OH and CF3CFBrH and CF2BrH was used to provide a useful first estimate of the environmental acceptability of these compounds in the context of their possible use as replacements for the conventional CFCs. A method was developed to provide a first estimate of the ODP of a halogenated alkane without use of a complicated (and expensive) computer modeling scheme. A reaction between molecular iodine and the nitrate radical in the gas-phase was discovered and the kinetics of this reaction have been studied. No temperature or pressure dependence was observed for the rate of reaction, the rate constant of which was found to be (1.5 +/- 0.5) x 10(exp -12)/cu cm

  10. Agricultural waste from the tequila industry as substrate for the production of commercially important enzymes.

    PubMed

    Huitron, C; Perez, R; Sanchez, A E; Lappe, P; Rocha Zavaleta, L

    2008-01-01

    Approximately 1 million tons of Agave tequilana plants are processed annually by the Mexican Tequila industry generating vast amounts of agricultural waste. The aim of this study was to investigate the potential use of Agave tequilana waste as substrate for the production of commercially important enzymes. Two strains of Aspergillus niger (CH-A-2010 and CH-A-2016), isolated from agave fields, were found to grow and propagate in submerged cultures using Agave tequilana waste as substrate. Isolates showed simultaneous extracellular inulinase, xylanase, pectinase, and cellulase activities. Aspergillus CH-A-2010 showed the highest production of inulinase activity (1.48 U/ml), whereas Aspergillus niger CH-A-2016 produced the highest xylanase (1.52 U/ml) and endo-pectinase (2.7U/ml) activities. In both cases production of enzyme activities was significantly higher on Agave tequilana waste than that observed on lemon peel and specific polymeric carbohydrates. Enzymatic hydrolysis of raw A. tequilana stems and leaves, by enzymes secreted by the isolates yielded maximum concentrations of reducing sugars of 28.2 g/l, and 9.9 g/l respectively. In conclusion, Agave tequilana waste can be utilized as substrate for the production of important biotechnological enzymes.

  11. Avian Species and Functional Diversity in Agricultural Landscapes: Does Landscape Heterogeneity Matter?

    PubMed Central

    2017-01-01

    While the positive relationship between avian diversity and habitat heterogeneity is widely accepted, it is primarily based on observed species richness without accounting for imperfect detection. Other facets of diversity such as functional diversity are also rarely explored. We investigated the avian diversity-landscape heterogeneity relationship in agricultural landscapes by considering two aspects of diversity: taxonomic diversity (species richness) estimated from a multi-species dynamic occupancy model, and functional diversity (functional evenness [FEve] and divergence [FDiv]) based on traits of occurring species. We also assessed how agricultural lands enrolled in a conservation program managed on behalf of declining early successional bird species (hereafter CP38 fields, an agri-environment scheme) influenced avian diversity. We analyzed breeding bird data collected at CP38 fields in Mississippi, USA, during 2010–2012, and two principal components of environmental variables: a gradient of heterogeneity (Shannon’s landscape diversity index) and of the amount of CP38 fields (percent cover of CP38 fields; CP38). FEve did not show significant responses to environmental variables, whereas FDiv responded positively to heterogeneity and negatively to CP38. However, most FDiv values did not significantly differ from random expectations along an environmental gradient. When there was a significant difference, FDiv was lower than that expected. Unlike functional diversity, species richness showed a clear pattern. Species richness increased with increasing landscape heterogeneity but decreased with increasing amounts of CP38 fields. Only one species responded negatively to heterogeneity and positively to CP38. Our results suggest that the relationships between avian diversity and landscape heterogeneity may vary depending on the aspect of diversity considered: strong positive effects of heterogeneity on taxonomic diversity, but weakly positive or non

  12. Avian Species and Functional Diversity in Agricultural Landscapes: Does Landscape Heterogeneity Matter?

    PubMed

    Lee, Myung-Bok; Martin, James A

    2017-01-01

    While the positive relationship between avian diversity and habitat heterogeneity is widely accepted, it is primarily based on observed species richness without accounting for imperfect detection. Other facets of diversity such as functional diversity are also rarely explored. We investigated the avian diversity-landscape heterogeneity relationship in agricultural landscapes by considering two aspects of diversity: taxonomic diversity (species richness) estimated from a multi-species dynamic occupancy model, and functional diversity (functional evenness [FEve] and divergence [FDiv]) based on traits of occurring species. We also assessed how agricultural lands enrolled in a conservation program managed on behalf of declining early successional bird species (hereafter CP38 fields, an agri-environment scheme) influenced avian diversity. We analyzed breeding bird data collected at CP38 fields in Mississippi, USA, during 2010-2012, and two principal components of environmental variables: a gradient of heterogeneity (Shannon's landscape diversity index) and of the amount of CP38 fields (percent cover of CP38 fields; CP38). FEve did not show significant responses to environmental variables, whereas FDiv responded positively to heterogeneity and negatively to CP38. However, most FDiv values did not significantly differ from random expectations along an environmental gradient. When there was a significant difference, FDiv was lower than that expected. Unlike functional diversity, species richness showed a clear pattern. Species richness increased with increasing landscape heterogeneity but decreased with increasing amounts of CP38 fields. Only one species responded negatively to heterogeneity and positively to CP38. Our results suggest that the relationships between avian diversity and landscape heterogeneity may vary depending on the aspect of diversity considered: strong positive effects of heterogeneity on taxonomic diversity, but weakly positive or non

  13. Assessing the Impact of a Semester-Long Course in Agricultural Mechanics on Pre-Service Agricultural Education Teachers' Importance, Confidence, and Knowledge of Welding

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Leiby, Brian L.; Robinson, J. Shane; Key, James P.

    2013-01-01

    This study sought to assess the perceptions of Oklahoma pre-service agricultural education teachers regarding the importance of identified welding skills standards and their confidence to teach them, based on a semester-long course on metals and welding. This study also sought to determine pre-service teachers' knowledge of welding prior to and at…

  14. Gas-Phase Reactions of Halogen Species of Atmospheric Importance.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heard, Anne C.

    Available from UMI in association with The British Library. Requires signed TDF. A low-pressure discharge-flow technique, with various optical detection methods, has been used to determine bimolecular rate coefficients for a number of reactions in the gas-phase between OH radicals and organic halogen -containing molecules and between NO_3 radicals and the iodine species I_2 and I. These experiments have shown that: (i) the reaction of methyl iodide with OH accounts for approximately 2% of the removal of CH_3I from the troposphere as compared with photolysis; (ii) abstraction of I-atoms from a C-I bond by OH is probable in the gas -phase; (iii) the halogen-containing anaesthetic substances halothane CF_3CCl BrH, enflurane CF_2HOCF _2CFClH, isoflurane CF_2HOCClHCF _3 and sevoflurane (CF_3) _2CHOCFH_2 have significantly shorter tropospheric lifetimes than the fully halogenated CFCs and halons because of reaction with the OH radical and are thus unlikely to be transported up to the stratosphere where they could contribute to the depletion of ozone. Data obtained for reactions between OH and some 'CFC alternatives' along with measurements of the integrated absorption cross -sections of the compounds in the spectral region 800-1200 cm^{-1} were used to calculate ozone depletion potentials (ODP) and greenhouse warming potentials relative to CFCl_3 for each compound. The study of the reactions between OH and CF_3CFBrH and CF _2BrH was used to provide a useful first estimate of the environmental acceptability of these compounds in the context of their possible use as replacements for the conventional CFCs. A method was developed to provide a first estimate of the ODP of a halogenated alkane without use of a complicated (and expensive) computer modeling scheme. A reaction between molecular iodine and the nitrate radical in the gas-phase was discovered and the kinetics of this reaction have been studied. No temperature or pressure dependence was observed for the rate of

  15. Comparative landscape genetics of two pond-breeding amphibian species in a highly modified agricultural landscape.

    PubMed

    Goldberg, Caren S; Waits, L P

    2010-09-01

    Evaluating fine-scale population structure of multiple species in the same landscape increases our ability to identify common patterns as well as discern ecological differences among species' landscape genetic relationships. In the Palouse bioregion of northern Idaho, USA, 99% of the native prairie has been converted to nonirrigated agriculture and exotic grasslands. Columbia spotted frogs (Rana luteiventris) and long-toed salamanders (Ambystoma macrodactylum) in this area breed almost entirely in artificial ponds on private land. We used genetic distances (F(ST) and D(c)) derived from eight microsatellite loci in 783 samples to evaluate the relationships among sympatric breeding populations (N = 20 and 26) of these species in a 213-km(2) landscape. Both species showed a pattern of isolation by distance that was not improved when distance was measured along drainages instead of topographically corrected straight lines (P < 0.01). After testing for autocorrelation among genetic distances, we used an information theoretic approach to model landscape resistance based on slope, soil type, solar insolation, and land cover, and multi-model inference to rank the resistance of landscape surfaces to dispersal (represented by genetic distance). For both species, urban and rural developed land cover provided the highest landscape resistances. Resistance values for long-toed salamanders followed a moisture gradient where forest provided the least resistance, while agriculture and shrub/clearcut provided the least resistance for Columbia spotted frogs. Comparative landscape genetics can be a powerful tool for detecting similarities and differences between codistributed species, and resulting models can be used to predict species-specific responses to landscape change.

  16. Simple, rapid, and inexpensive cleanup method for quantitation of aflatoxins in important agricultural products by HPLC.

    PubMed

    Sobolev, Victor S

    2007-03-21

    A chemical cleanup procedure for low-level quantitative determination of aflatoxins in major economically important agricultural commodities using HPLC has been developed. Aflatoxins were extracted from a ground sample with MeOH/H2O (80:20, v/v), and after a cleanup step on a minicolumn packed with Florisil, aflatoxins were quantified by HPLC equipped with a C18 column, a photochemical reactor, and a fluorescence detector. Water/MeOH (63:37, v/v) served as the mobile phase. Recoveries of aflatoxins B1, B2, G1, and G2 from peanuts spiked at 5, 1.7, 5, and 1.7 ng/g were 89.5+/-2.2, 94.7+/-2.5, 90.4+/-1.0, and 98.2+/-1.1, respectively (mean+/-SD, %, n=3). Similar recoveries, precision, and accuracy were achieved for corn, brown and white rice, cottonseed, almonds, Brazil nuts, pistachios, walnuts, and hazelnuts. The quantitation limits for aflatoxins in peanuts were 50 pg/g for aflatoxin B1 and 17 pg/g for aflatoxin B2. The minimal cost of the minicolumn allows for substantial savings compared with available commercial aflatoxin cleanup devices.

  17. Salt tolerant green crop species for sodium management in space agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamashita, Masamichi; Hashimoto, Hirofumi; Tomita-Yokotani, Kaori; Shimoda, Toshifumi; Nose, Akihiro; Space Agriculture Task Force, J.

    Ecological system and materials recycling loop of space agriculture are quite tight compared to natural ecological system on Earth. Sodium management will be a keen issue for space agricul-ture. Human nutritional requirements include sodium salt. Since sodium at high concentration is toxic for most of plant growth, excreted sodium of human waste should be removed from compost fertilizer. Use of marine algae is promising for harvesting potassium and other min-erals required for plant growth and returning remained sodium to satisfy human need of its intake. Farming salt tolerant green crop species is another approach to manage sodium problem in both space and terrestrial agriculture. We chose ice plant and New Zealand spinach. These two plant species are widely accepted green vegetable with many recipe. Ice plant can grow at the salinity level of sea water, and contain sodium salt up to 30% of its dry mass. Sodium distributes mainly in its bladder cells. New Zealand spinach is a plant species found in the front zone of sea shore, and tolerant against high salinity as well. Plant body size of both species at harvest is quite large, and easy to farm. Capability of bio-remediation of high saline soil is examined with ice plant and New Zealand spinach. Incubation medium was chosen to contain high concentration of sodium and potassium at the Na/K ratio of human excreta. In case Na/K ratio of plant body grown by this medium is greatly higher than that of incubation medium or soil, these halophytes are effective to remediate soil for farming less tolerant plant crop. Experimental results was less positive in this context.

  18. Cupriavidus and Burkholderia species associated with agricultural plants that grow in alkaline soils.

    PubMed

    Estrada-de Los Santos, Paulina; Vacaseydel-Aceves, Nora Belinda; Martínez-Aguilar, Lourdes; Cruz-Hernández, María Antonia; Mendoza-Herrera, Alberto; Caballero-Mellado, Jesús

    2011-12-01

    The presence of Burkholderia, Cupriavidus, and Ralstonia species in northeastern Mexico was investigated. An analysis of the root surrounding soil from different agricultural plants led to the isolation of Burkholderia and Cupriavidus species but no Ralstonia strains. Most Cupriavidus species were unknown and grouped into two clusters according to ARDRA profiles. The 16S rRNA sequence analysis showed that the Cupriavidus isolates were highly related among them and with different Cupriavidus species with validated names. However, SDS-PAGE profiles were distinct among the different ARDRA profiles and to other Cupriavidus species examined, suggesting new species in the genus. This shows that Cupriavidus is more widely associated with plants than previously appreciated. The BCC isolate was 99% similar to B. cenocepacia by recA sequence analysis. Additionally, most Cupriavidus strains from the two largest groups grew on media containing up to 0.1 mg/ml of copper, 10.0 mg/ml arsenic and 1.0 mg/ml zinc. Burkholderia strains grew on media containing up to 10.0 mg/ml zinc, 5.0 mg/ml arsenic and 0.1 mg/ml copper.

  19. Recognizing the importance of the Department of Agriculture Forest Service Experimental Forests and Ranges.

    THOMAS, 111th Congress

    Rep. Childers, Travis [D-MS-1

    2009-04-02

    09/16/2009 Received in the Senate and referred to the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry. (All Actions) Tracker: This bill has the status Passed HouseHere are the steps for Status of Legislation:

  20. The importance of instream habitat modifications for restoring channelized agricultural headwater streams

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Science based information on the influence of restoration practices on fishes within channelized agricultural headwater streams in the Midwestern United States is currently lacking. Understanding fish-habitat relationships and fish responses to specific restoration practices will provide informatio...

  1. Hybridization of powdery mildew strains gives rise to pathogens on novel agricultural crop species.

    PubMed

    Menardo, Fabrizio; Praz, Coraline R; Wyder, Stefan; Ben-David, Roi; Bourras, Salim; Matsumae, Hiromi; McNally, Kaitlin E; Parlange, Francis; Riba, Andrea; Roffler, Stefan; Schaefer, Luisa K; Shimizu, Kentaro K; Valenti, Luca; Zbinden, Helen; Wicker, Thomas; Keller, Beat

    2016-02-01

    Throughout the history of agriculture, many new crop species (polyploids or artificial hybrids) have been introduced to diversify products or to increase yield. However, little is known about how these new crops influence the evolution of new pathogens and diseases. Triticale is an artificial hybrid of wheat and rye, and it was resistant to the fungal pathogen powdery mildew (Blumeria graminis) until 2001 (refs. 1,2,3). We sequenced and compared the genomes of 46 powdery mildew isolates covering several formae speciales. We found that B. graminis f. sp. triticale, which grows on triticale and wheat, is a hybrid between wheat powdery mildew (B. graminis f. sp. tritici) and mildew specialized on rye (B. graminis f. sp. secalis). Our data show that the hybrid of the two mildews specialized on two different hosts can infect the hybrid plant species originating from those two hosts. We conclude that hybridization between mildews specialized on different species is a mechanism of adaptation to new crops introduced by agriculture.

  2. Biodiversity in Organic Farmland - How Does Landscape Context Influence Species Diversity in Organic Vs. Conventional Agricultural Fields?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seufert, V.; Wood, S.; Reid, A.; Gonzalez, A.; Rhemtulla, J.; Ramankutty, N.

    2014-12-01

    The most important current driver of biodiversity loss is the conversion of natural habitats for human land uses, mostly for the purpose of food production. However, by causing this biodiversity loss, food production is eroding the very same ecosystem services (e.g. pollination and soil fertility) that it depends on. We therefore need to adopt more wildlife-friendly agricultural practices that can contribute to preserving biodiversity. Organic farming has been shown to typically host higher biodiversity than conventional farming. But how is the biodiversity benefit of organic management dependent on the landscape context farms are situated in? To implement organic farming as an effective means for protecting biodiversity and enhancing ecosystem services we need to understand better under what conditions organic management is most beneficial for species. We conducted a meta-analysis of the literature to answer this question, compiling the most comprehensive database to date of studies that monitored biodiversity in organic vs. conventional fields. We also collected information about the landscape surrounding these fields from remote sensing products. Our database consists of 348 study sites across North America and Europe. Our analysis shows that organic management can improve biodiversity in agricultural fields substantially. It is especially effective at preserving biodiversity in homogeneous landscapes that are structurally simplified and dominated by either cropland or pasture. In heterogeneous landscapes conventional agriculture might instead already hold high biodiversity, and organic management does not appear to provide as much of a benefit for species richness as in simplified landscapes. Our results suggest that strategies to maintain biodiversity-dependent ecosystem services should include a combination of pristine natural habitats, wildlife-friendly farming systems like organic farming, and high-yielding conventional systems, interspersed in structurally

  3. Assessment of oil content and fatty acid composition variability in two economically important Hibiscus species.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The Hibiscus genus encompasses more than 300 species, but kenaf (H. cannabinus L.) and roselle (H. sabdariffa L.) are the two most economically important species within the genus. Seeds from these two Hibiscus species contain a relatively high amount of oil with two unusual fatty acids: dihydrosterc...

  4. Agricultural By-Products Turned into Important Materials with Adsorptive Properties

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This presentation will summarize the use of agricultural by-products (e.g., animal manure and plant waste) as starting materials to adsorb environmental contaminants such as mercury from air, ammonia from air, metal ions from water, and chlorinated organics from water. The results show that the mat...

  5. Assessing the importance of agricultural management practices to reduce the ecological risk of pesticides

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The use of pesticides in agriculture, their potential to be transported beyond the intended target, and their possible risk to human and environmental health has been of public concern for many years. We utilized 5 years of field data from 3 vegetable production systems to evaluate the ability of ag...

  6. Agriculturally important yeasts: Biological control of field and postharvest diseases using yeast antagonists, and yeasts as pathogens of plants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Two important agricultural aspects of yeasts, control of plant diseases through application of yeasts as the control agent, and yeasts that are plant pathogens are reviewed. Yeasts as biocontrol organisms are presented first, followed by a discussion of some of the more common plant pathogenic yeas...

  7. Concentrations and speciation of arsenic in New England seaweed species harvested for food and agriculture.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Vivien F; Jackson, Brian P

    2016-11-01

    A survey of arsenic (As) concentrations and speciation was conducted on 10 species of seaweed from commercial harvesters and from collection at two sites in New England. Concentrations of As ranged from 4 to 106 mg/kg, mostly in the form of arsenosugars, with the distribution of arsenosugar analogs varying between taxa. In brown algae, As levels were correlated with phosphate concentrations, and arsenosugar speciation reflected differences in sulfur and phosphate concentrations between taxa. Several samples of the brown algae species Laminaria digitata contained significant levels of inorganic As (2.8-20 mg/kg), the most toxic form of As. A weak acid extraction with microwave heating was compared with a weaker methanol: water extraction method, and found to give slightly higher extraction efficiency with comparable relative concentrations of inorganic As, supporting the use of this faster and simpler extraction method for monitoring. Seaweed is a niche dietary item in the U.S. but its popularity is increasing; it is also used in agriculture and livestock farming which provide potential indirect routes for human exposure. The presence of occasional high concentrations of iAs, as well as the lack of toxicity studies on organic As species, suggest that monitoring of these high As foods is warranted.

  8. Nursery use patterns of commercially important marine fish species in estuarine systems along the Portuguese coast

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vasconcelos, R. P.; Reis-Santos, P.; Maia, A.; Fonseca, V.; França, S.; Wouters, N.; Costa, M. J.; Cabral, H. N.

    2010-03-01

    Analysing the estuarine use patterns of juveniles of marine migrant fish species is vital for identifying important sites for juveniles as well as the basic environmental features that characterize these sites for different species. This is a key aspect towards understanding nursery function. Various estuarine systems along the Portuguese coast (Minho, Douro, Ria de Aveiro, Mondego, Tejo, Sado, Mira, Ria Formosa and Guadiana) were sampled during Spring and Summer 2005 and 2006. Juveniles of commercially important marine fish species Solea solea, Solea senegalensis, Platichthys flesus, Diplodus vulgaris and Dicentrarchus labrax, predominantly 0-group individuals, were amongst the most abundant species and had distinct patterns of estuarine use as well as conspicuous associations with several environmental features. Juvenile occurrence and density varied amongst estuaries and sites within them, and differed with species. Sites with consistently high juvenile densities were identified as important juvenile sites (i.e. putative nursery grounds). Through generalized linear models (GLM), intra-estuarine variation in occurrence and density of each of the individual species was largely explained by environmental variables (temperature; salinity; depth; percentage of mud in the sediment; presence of seagrass; importance of intertidal areas; relative distance to estuary mouth; macrozoobenthos densities; and latitude). Decisive environmental factors defining important sites for juveniles varied depending on the system as a result of different environmental gradients, though there were common dominant features for each species regardless of the estuary considered. Analysed environmental variables in the GLM also accounted for inter-estuarine variation in species' occurrence and density. In several estuaries, the identified important juvenile sites were used by many of these species simultaneously and may be of increased value to both management and conservation. Overall, the

  9. Copper toxicity thresholds for important restoration grass species of the Western United States.

    PubMed

    Paschke, Mark W; Redente, Edward F

    2002-12-01

    Copper toxicity thresholds for plant species that are used in restoration activities in western North America have not been established. As a result, ecological risk assessments must rely on toxicity thresholds established for agronomic species, which usually differ from those of species used in restoration. Thus, risk assessors have the potential for classifying sites as phytotoxic to perennial, nonagronomic species and calling for intensive remediation activities that may not be necessary. The objective of this study was to provide a better estimate of Cu toxicity thresholds for five grass species that are commonly used in restoration efforts in the western United States. We used a greenhouse screening study where seedlings of introduced redtop (Agrostis gigantea Roth.), the native species slender wheatgrass (Elymus trachycaulus [Link] Gould ex Shinners var. Pryor), tufted hairgrass (Deschampsia caespitosa [L.] Beauvois), big bluegrass (Poa secunda J. Presl var. Sherman), and basin wildrye (Leymus cinereus [Scribner & Merrill] A. Love var. Magnar) and the agricultural species common wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) were grown in sand culture and exposed to supplemental concentrations of soluble Cu of 0 (control), 50, 100, 150, 200, 250, and 300 mg/L. We determined six measures of toxicity: the 60-d mean lethal concentration (LC50), 60-d mean effective concentration (EC50)-plant, 60-d EC50-shoot, 60-d EC50-root, phytotoxicity threshold (PT50)-shoot, and the PT50-root. Results suggest that these restoration grass species generally have higher Cu tolerance than agronomic species reported in the past. Of the species tested, redtop appeared to be especially tolerant of high levels of substrate and tissue Cu. Values of EC50-plant for restoration grasses were between 283 and 710 mg Cu/L compared to 120 mg Cu/L for common wheat. Measured PT50-shoot values were between 737 and 10,792 mg Cu/L. These reported thresholds should be more useful for risk assessors than those

  10. 9 CFR 93.911 - Ports designated for the importation of live VHS-regulated fish species.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE EXPORTATION AND IMPORTATION OF ANIMALS... ANIMAL, BIRD, AND POULTRY PRODUCTS; REQUIREMENTS FOR MEANS OF CONVEYANCE AND SHIPPING CONTAINERS...

  11. Gene flow in the green mirid, Creontiades dilutus (Hemiptera: Miridae), across arid and agricultural environments with different host plant species

    PubMed Central

    Hereward, J P; Walter, G H; DeBarro, P J; Lowe, A J; Riginos, C

    2013-01-01

    Creontiades dilutus (Stål), the green mirid, is a polyphagous herbivorous insect endemic to Australia. Although common in the arid interior of Australia and found on several native host plants that are spatially and temporally ephemeral, green mirids also reach pest levels on several crops in eastern Australia. These host-associated dynamics, distributed across a large geographic area, raise questions as to whether (1) seasonal fluctuations in population size result in genetic bottlenecks and drift, (2) arid and agricultural populations are genetically isolated, and (3) the use of different host plants results in genetic differentiation. We sequenced a mitochondrial COI fragment from individuals collected over 24 years and screened microsatellite variation from 32 populations across two seasons. The predominance of a single COI haplotype and negative Tajima D in samples from 2006/2007 fit with a population expansion model. In the older collections (1983 and 1993), a different haplotype is most prevalent, consistent with successive population contractions and expansions. Microsatellite data indicates recent migration between inland sites and coastal crops and admixture in several populations. Altogether, the data suggest that long-distance dispersal occurs between arid and agricultural regions, and this, together with fluctuations in population size, leads to temporally dynamic patterns of genetic differentiation. Host-associated differentiation is evident between mirids sampled from plants in the genus Cullen (Fabaceae), the primary host, and alternative host plant species growing nearby in arid regions. Our results highlight the importance of jointly assessing natural and agricultural environments in understanding the ecology of pest insects. PMID:23610626

  12. The Potential of Pigeonpea (Cajanus cajan) for Producing Important Components of Renewable Energy and Agricultural Products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gwata, E.

    2012-04-01

    In agricultural systems, sustainable crop production is critical in meeting both environmental requirements and the limitations of drought imposed by the effects of global warming. The inputs for crop production and end use of the products should determine the choice of a crop particularly in environments prone to droughts. The objective of this paper is to highlight why a multi-purpose grain legume such as pigeonpea is an ideal crop that can be utilized for producing renewable energy. Firstly, it is highly tolerant to drought and does not require additional soil moisture after the seedling growth stage. The deep tape root extracts moisture and nutrients from deep layers of the soil concomitantly allowing for efficient nutrient recycling. The piscidic acid which is exuded from the roots enhances the solubilization of phosphorus in order to make it available for plant uptake. Secondly, the grain of pigeonpea is suitable for both human food and feedstocks. The grain is rich in oil, vitamins, minerals and protein. The grain can also be used for producing biofuel. In many countries particularly in the developing world, the stover is used as fuel wood or building (roofing) material, thus alleviating pressure on forest products. The crop is grown without the application of inorganic fertilizers as it can fix atmospheric nitrogen symbiotically in its root nodules. Pigeonpea is also ratoonable, producing two or more harvests per season. In addition, it is grown in mixed cropping systems thus optimizing land use. In these regards, pigeonpea is sustainable and environmentally friendly choice for agricultural production of food and energy balance.

  13. Soil and geography are more important determinants of indigenous arbuscular mycorrhizal communities than management practices in Swiss agricultural soils.

    PubMed

    Jansa, Jan; Erb, Angela; Oberholzer, Hans-Rudolf; Smilauer, Petr; Egli, Simon

    2014-04-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) are ubiquitous soil fungi, forming mutualistic symbiosis with a majority of terrestrial plant species. They are abundant in nearly all soils, less diverse than soil prokaryotes and other intensively studied soil organisms and thus are promising candidates for universal indicators of land management legacies and soil quality degradation. However, insufficient data on how the composition of indigenous AMF varies along soil and landscape gradients have hampered the definition of baselines and effect thresholds to date. Here, indigenous AMF communities in 154 agricultural soils collected across Switzerland were profiled by quantitative real-time PCR with taxon-specific markers for six widespread AMF species. To identify the key determinants of AMF community composition, the profiles were related to soil properties, land management and site geography. Our results indicate a number of well-supported dependencies between abundances of certain AMF taxa and soil properties such as pH, soil fertility and texture, and a surprising lack of effect of available soil phosphorus on the AMF community profiles. Site geography, especially the altitude and large geographical distance, strongly affected AMF communities. Unexpected was the apparent lack of a strong land management effect on the AMF communities as compared to the other predictors, which could be due to the rarity of highly intensive and unsustainable land management in Swiss agriculture. In spite of the extensive coverage of large geographical and soil gradients, we did not identify any taxon suitable as an indicator of land use among the six taxa we studied.

  14. EPA Resolves Violations with Newport Beach, Calif. Company for Failure to Report Imported Agricultural Chemicals

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    LOS ANGELES -The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency settled its case against American Vanguard Corporation, located in Newport Beach, Calif., for failure to report toxic chemical substances imported by two of its subsidiary companies. American Vang

  15. A new member of the Pteropine Orthoreovirus species isolated from fruit bats imported to Italy.

    PubMed

    Lorusso, Alessio; Teodori, Liana; Leone, Alessandra; Marcacci, Maurilia; Mangone, Iolanda; Orsini, Massimiliano; Capobianco-Dondona, Andrea; Camma', Cesare; Monaco, Federica; Savini, Giovanni

    2015-03-01

    A novel member of the Pteropine Orthoreovirus species has been isolated and sequenced for the whole genome from flying foxes (Pteropus vampyrus) imported to Italy from Indonesia. The new isolate named Indonesia/2010 is genetically similar to Melaka virus which has been the first virus of this species to be shown to be responsible for human respiratory disease. Our findings highlight the importance of flying foxes as vectors of potentially zoonotic viruses and the biological hazard that lies in the import of animals from geographical areas that are ecologically diverse from Europe.

  16. Projecting Future Nitrous Oxide Emissions From Agriculture: Importance of Ecological Feedbacks and the Environmental Benefits of Improved Nitrogen Use Efficiency

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kanter, D.; Zhang, X.; Shevliakova, E.; Malyshev, S.; Mauzerall, D. L.

    2014-12-01

    Nitrous oxide (N2O) presents a triple threat to the global environment: it is the third most important anthropogenic greenhouse gas, the largest remaining anthropogenic contributor to stratospheric ozone depletion, and an important component of the nitrogen (N) cascade - where one atom of N can interconvert between a number of forms, each with a unique set of environmental impacts. Here we use a dynamic vegetation model (Princeton-Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Lab (GFDL) LM3 - the interactive land component of the GFDL Earth System Model) to assess how changes in future climate, land-use, and global fertilizer and manure application are projected to affect global N2O emissions from agriculture by 2050. Agricultural land is defined in this study as the sum of cropland and pasture. In a baseline scenario assuming little improvement in global N use efficiency (NUE) by 2050, the model projects a 24-31% increase in global agricultural N2O emissions (with the uncertainty range stemming from differences in climate forcing, land-use and fertilizer and manure consumption between RCP2.6 and RCP8.5, the two climate scenarios used in this study) - rising from 2.9 Tg N2O-N yr-1 in 1990-2000 to 3.6-3.8 Tg N2O-N yr-1 in 2040-2050. This emission increase is considerably less than the projected increases in global fertilizer and manure consumption (42-44%) and previously published projections of global agricultural N2O emission increases (38-75% - again, the uncertainty range reflecting the differences between the climate scenarios used). This disparity appears to be a result of ecological feedbacks captured by the model, where a considerable portion of the increase in fertilizer and manure use is absorbed by agricultural plant biomass rather than lost to the environment. In addition to this dynamic, the model projects that improvements in global NUE of 20-50% could reduce global N2O emissions significantly, delivering important climate and stratospheric ozone benefits over the period

  17. Importance of hybridization between indigenous and nonindigenous freshwater species: an overlooked threat to North American biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Perry, William L; Lodge, David M; Feder, Jeffrey L

    2002-04-01

    Biodiversity of North American freshwaters is among the greatest in the world. However, due to extensive habitat degradation, pollution, and introductions of nonindigenous species, this biodiversity is also among the most endangered. Unlike habitat degradation and pollution, nonindigenous species represent a permanent loss of biodiversity because their removal or control is often impossible. Most species introduced into nonnative North American ranges, however, are not from Eurasia but have been introduced from geographically isolated regions within North America. Although the ecological effects of introduced species have been widely documented, the effects of hybridization, especially between closely related species, represents an equally serious mechanism of extinction but is much less studied. Identification of which species are likely to hybridize after contact is of critical importance to prevent the further loss of native species. Molecular phylogenetics serves as a powerful tool to identify freshwater species at risk of introgression, if we can assume that genetic distance is a good predictor of the potential for hybridization. Although not a thorough review of all cases of hybridization, this article documents the extent and effects of hybridization in fishes, crayfishes, mussels, and other invertebrates in light of the currently accepted phylogenetic relationships. We suggest this approach may be the first step in addressing the potential threat of hybridization between many of the closely related species in North American fresh waters.

  18. BOREAL FOREST CARBON STOCKS AND WOOD SUPPLY: PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE RESPONSES TO CHANGING CLIMATE, AGRICULTURE AND SPECIES AVAILABILITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    The paper assesses the role in boreal forest growth played by environment. It examines past changes in climate coupled with glaciation, and future changes in climate coupled with agricultural land use and tree species availability. The objective was to define and evaluate potenti...

  19. The Importance of Selected Instructional Areas in the Present and Future Secondary Agricultural Education Curriculum as Perceived by Teachers, Principals, and Superintendents in Nebraska.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Foster, Rick; And Others

    1995-01-01

    A 1989-90 survey received 381 responses from Nebraska agriculture teachers, principals, and superintendents in which they rated agricultural economics, marketing, and computers as important current topics; leadership, personal development, agribusiness management, and natural resources were important future topics. Most had a cautious, low-risk…

  20. Cryptic diversity and habitat partitioning in an economically important aphid species complex.

    PubMed

    Savory, F R; Ramakrishnan, U

    2015-03-01

    Cardamom Bushy Dwarf Virus (CBDV) is an aphid-borne nanovirus which infects large cardamom, Amomum subulatum (Zingiberaceae family), in the Himalayan foothills of Northeast India, Nepal and Bhutan. Two aphid species have been reported to transmit CBDV, including Pentalonia nigronervosa and Micromyzus kalimpongensis (also described as Pentalonia kalimpongensis). However, P. nigronervosa was recently split into two species which exhibit different host plant affiliations. Whilst P. nigronervosa primarily feeds on banana plants, Pentaloniacaladii (previously considered a 'form' of P. nigronervosa) typically feeds on plants belonging to the Araceae, Heliconiaceae and Zingiberaceae families. This raises the possibility that CBDV vectors that were originally described as P. nigronervosa correspond to P. caladii. Accurate identification of vector species is important for understanding disease dynamics and for implementing management strategies. However, closely related species can be difficult to distinguish based on morphological characteristics. In this study, we used molecular markers (two mitochondrial loci and one nuclear locus) and Bayesian phylogenetic analyses to identify aphid specimens collected from 148 CBDV infected plants at a range of locations and elevations throughout Sikkim and the Darjeeling district of West Bengal (Northeast India). Our results revealed the presence of a diversity of lineages, comprising up to six distinct species in at least two related genera. These included the three species mentioned above, an unidentified Pentalonia species and two lineages belonging to an unknown genus. Surprisingly, P. caladii was only detected on a single infected plant, indicating that this species may not play an important role in CBDV transmission dynamics. Distinct elevation distributions were observed for the different species, demonstrating that the community composition of aphids which feed on large cardamom plants changes across an elevation gradient

  1. U.S. Irrigation. Extent and Economic Importance. Agriculture Information Bulletin Number 523.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Day, John C.; Horner, Gerald L.

    Data for the years 1974, 1978, 1982, and 1984 are used to identify the principal features of irrigated farming in the United States and to assess the importance of irrigation to the farm economy. Irrigation of U.S. acreage declined 5.6 million acres between 1978 and 1984 to 44.7 million acres. In 1982 irrigated acreage represented 6 percent of the…

  2. Googling Food Webs: Can an Eigenvector Measure Species' Importance for Coextinctions?

    PubMed Central

    Allesina, Stefano; Pascual, Mercedes

    2009-01-01

    A major challenge in ecology is forecasting the effects of species' extinctions, a pressing problem given current human impacts on the planet. Consequences of species losses such as secondary extinctions are difficult to forecast because species are not isolated, but interact instead in a complex network of ecological relationships. Because of their mutual dependence, the loss of a single species can cascade in multiple coextinctions. Here we show that an algorithm adapted from the one Google uses to rank web-pages can order species according to their importance for coextinctions, providing the sequence of losses that results in the fastest collapse of the network. Moreover, we use the algorithm to bridge the gap between qualitative (who eats whom) and quantitative (at what rate) descriptions of food webs. We show that our simple algorithm finds the best possible solution for the problem of assigning importance from the perspective of secondary extinctions in all analyzed networks. Our approach relies on network structure, but applies regardless of the specific dynamical model of species' interactions, because it identifies the subset of coextinctions common to all possible models, those that will happen with certainty given the complete loss of prey of a given predator. Results show that previous measures of importance based on the concept of “hubs” or number of connections, as well as centrality measures, do not identify the most effective extinction sequence. The proposed algorithm provides a basis for further developments in the analysis of extinction risk in ecosystems. PMID:19730676

  3. Exploring relationships among land ownership, agricultural land use, and native fish species richness in the Upper Mississippi River Basin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    DeJager, Nathan R.; Rohweder, Jason J.

    2012-01-01

    In this study, we explored relationships among agricultural land use, land ownership, and native fish biodiversity in the UMRB as a first step toward helping the Fishers and Farmers Partnership identify specific locations in the UMRB that may pose conservation challenges. For example, places that have experienced a loss of native fish species richness relative to historical conditions and also have high proportions of absentee landowners may provide restoration challenges. We were also interested in identifying areas that have retained high levels of species richness and are owner-operated. These areas present good opportunities to work with local landowners to protect aquatic resources. To identify such areas, we addressed two primary questions: 1) Is there a relationship between the type of agricultural land use (i.e. cropland vs pastureland) and the % of land rented or leased within the UMRB? and 2) How does the type of agricultural production and whether land is rented or leased relate to the maintenance of historical levels of native fish species richness? We predicted that areas with large amounts of land devoted to crop production will have experienced the greatest losses of native fish species richness. However, our hypothesis is that watersheds with large amounts of land rented or leased will have experienced even greater declines in native fish species richness than would be predicted from the amount of cultivated cropland alone. By testing these hypotheses, we intended to identify watersheds that would be strong candidates for protection, restoration, and enhancement

  4. Are Photosynthetic Characteristics and Energetic Cost Important Invasive Traits for Alien Sonneratia Species in South China?

    PubMed Central

    Li, Feng-Lan; Zan, Qi-Jie; Hu, Zheng-Yu; Shin, Paul-K. S.; Cheung, Siu-Gin; Wong, Yuk-Shan; Tam, Nora Fung-Yee; Lei, An-Ping

    2016-01-01

    A higher photosynthesis and lower energetic cost are recognized as important characteristics for invasive species, but whether these traits are also important for the ability of alien mangrove species to become invasive has seldom been reported. A microcosm study was conducted to compare the photosynthetic characteristics, energetic cost indices and other growth traits between two alien species (Sonneratia apetala and S. caseolaris) and four native mangrove species over four seasons in a subtropical mangrove nature reserve in Shenzhen, South China. The aim of the study was to evaluate the invasive potential of Sonneratia based on these physiological responses. The annual average net photosynthetic rate (Pn), stomatal conductance (Gs) and total carbon assimilation per unit leaf area (Atotal) of the two alien Sonneratia species were significantly higher than the values of the native mangroves. In contrast, the opposite results were obtained for the leaf construction cost (CC) per unit dry mass (CCM) and CC per unit area (CCA) values. The higher Atotal and lower CC values resulted in a 72% higher photosynthetic energy-use efficiency (PEUE) for Sonneratia compared to native mangroves, leading to a higher relative growth rate (RGR) of the biomass and height of Sonneratia with the respective values being 51% and 119% higher than those of the native species. Higher photosynthetic indices for Sonneratia compared to native species were found in all seasons except winter, whereas lower CC values were found in all four seasons. The present findings reveal that alien Sonneratia species may adapt well and become invasive in subtropical mangrove wetlands in Shenzhen due to their higher photosynthetic characteristics coupled with lower costs in energy use, leading to a higher PEUE. The comparison of these physiological responses between S. apetala and S. caseolaris reveal that the former species is more invasive than the latter one, thus requiring more attention in future. PMID

  5. Are Photosynthetic Characteristics and Energetic Cost Important Invasive Traits for Alien Sonneratia Species in South China?

    PubMed

    Li, Feng-Lan; Zan, Qi-Jie; Hu, Zheng-Yu; Shin, Paul-K S; Cheung, Siu-Gin; Wong, Yuk-Shan; Tam, Nora Fung-Yee; Lei, An-Ping

    2016-01-01

    A higher photosynthesis and lower energetic cost are recognized as important characteristics for invasive species, but whether these traits are also important for the ability of alien mangrove species to become invasive has seldom been reported. A microcosm study was conducted to compare the photosynthetic characteristics, energetic cost indices and other growth traits between two alien species (Sonneratia apetala and S. caseolaris) and four native mangrove species over four seasons in a subtropical mangrove nature reserve in Shenzhen, South China. The aim of the study was to evaluate the invasive potential of Sonneratia based on these physiological responses. The annual average net photosynthetic rate (Pn), stomatal conductance (Gs) and total carbon assimilation per unit leaf area (Atotal) of the two alien Sonneratia species were significantly higher than the values of the native mangroves. In contrast, the opposite results were obtained for the leaf construction cost (CC) per unit dry mass (CCM) and CC per unit area (CCA) values. The higher Atotal and lower CC values resulted in a 72% higher photosynthetic energy-use efficiency (PEUE) for Sonneratia compared to native mangroves, leading to a higher relative growth rate (RGR) of the biomass and height of Sonneratia with the respective values being 51% and 119% higher than those of the native species. Higher photosynthetic indices for Sonneratia compared to native species were found in all seasons except winter, whereas lower CC values were found in all four seasons. The present findings reveal that alien Sonneratia species may adapt well and become invasive in subtropical mangrove wetlands in Shenzhen due to their higher photosynthetic characteristics coupled with lower costs in energy use, leading to a higher PEUE. The comparison of these physiological responses between S. apetala and S. caseolaris reveal that the former species is more invasive than the latter one, thus requiring more attention in future.

  6. Occurrence and Diversity of Clinically Important Vibrio Species in the Aquatic Environment of Georgia

    PubMed Central

    Kokashvili, Tamar; Whitehouse, Chris A.; Tskhvediani, Ana; Grim, Christopher J.; Elbakidze, Tinatin; Mitaishvili, Nino; Janelidze, Nino; Jaiani, Ekaterine; Haley, Bradd J.; Lashkhi, Nino; Huq, Anwar; Colwell, Rita R.; Tediashvili, Marina

    2015-01-01

    Among the more than 70 different Vibrio species inhabiting marine, estuarine, and freshwater ecosystems, 12 are recognized as human pathogens. The warm subtropical climate of the Black Sea coastal area and inland regions of Georgia likely provides a favorable environment for various Vibrio species. From 2006 to 2009, the abundance, ecology, and diversity of clinically important Vibrio species were studied in different locations in Georgia and across seasons. Over a 33-month period, 1,595 presumptive Vibrio isolates were collected from the Black Sea (n = 657) and freshwater lakes around Tbilisi (n = 938). Screening of a subset of 440 concentrated and enriched water samples by PCR-electrospray ionization/mass spectrometry (PCR-ESI/MS) detected the presence of DNA from eight clinically important Vibrio species: V. cholerae, V. parahaemolyticus, V. vulnificus, V. mimicus, V. alginolyticus, V. harveyi, V. metschnikovii, and V. cincinnatiensis. Almost 90% of PCR/ESI-MS samples positive for Vibrio species were collected from June through November. Three important human-pathogenic Vibrio species (V. cholerae, V. parahaemolyticus, and V. vulnificus) were detected in 62.8, 37.8, and 21.4% of samples testing positive for Vibrios, respectively. The results of these activities suggest that natural reservoirs for human-pathogenic Vibrios exist in Georgian aquatic environments. Water temperature at all sampling sites was positively correlated with the abundance of clinically important Vibrio spp. (except V. metschnikovii), and salinity was correlated with species composition at particular Black Sea sites as well as inland reservoirs. PMID:26528464

  7. Association of N2-fixing cyanobacteria and plants: towards novel symbioses of agricultural importance

    SciTech Connect

    Elhai, Jeff

    2001-06-25

    Some nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria are able to form symbioses with a wide variety of plants. Nostoc 2S9B is unusual in its ability to infect the roots of wheat, raising the prospect of a productive association with an important crop plant. The goal of the project was to lay the groundwork for the use of novel associations between Nostoc and crops of agronomic importance, thereby reducing our reliance on nitrogenous fertilizer. Nostoc 2S9B was found to enter roots through mechanical damage of roots and reside primarily in intercellular spaces. The strain could also be incorporated into wheat calli grown in tissue culture. In both cases, the rate of nitrogen fixation by the cyanobacterium was higher than that of the same strain grown with no plant present. Artificial nodules induced by the action of hormone 2,4D were readily infected by Nostoc 2S9B, and the cyanobacteria within such nodules fixed nitrogen under fully aerobic conditions. The nitrogen fixed was shown to be incorporated into the growing wheat seedlings. Nostoc thus differs from other bacteria in its ability to fix nitrogen in para-nodules without need for artificially microaerobic conditions. It would be useful to introduce foreign DNA into Nostoc 2S9B in order to make defined mutations to understand the genetic basis of its ability to infect wheat and to create strains that might facilitate the study of the infection process. Transfer of DNA into the cyanobacterium appears to be limited by the presence of four restriction enzymes, with recognition sequences the same as BamHI, BglI, BsaHI, and Tth111I. Genes encoding methyltransferases that protect DNA against these four enzymes have been cloned into helper plasmids to allow transfer of DNA from E. coli to Nostoc 2S9B.

  8. Geographic distribution, evolution, and disease importance of species within the Neotropical Anopheles albitarsis Group (Diptera, Culicidae)

    PubMed Central

    Linton, Yvonne-Marie; Ruiz-Lopez, J. Freddy; Conn, Jan E.; Sallum, Maria Anice M.; Póvoa, Marinete M.; Bergo, Eduardo S.; Oliveira, Tatiane M. P.; Sucupira, Izis; Wilkerson, Richard C.

    2015-01-01

    The Anopheles albitarsis group of mosquitoes comprises eight recognized species and one mitochondrial lineage. Our knowledge of malaria vectorial importance and the distribution and evolution of these taxa is incomplete. We constructed ecological niche models (ENMs) for these taxa and used hypothesized phylogenetic relationships and ENMs to investigate environmental and ecological divergence associated with speciation events. Two major clades were identified, one north (Clade 1) and one south (Clade 2) of the Amazon River that likely is or was a barrier to mosquito movement. Clade 1 species occur more often in higher average temperature locations than Clade 2 species, and taxon splits within Clade 1 corresponded with a greater divergence of variables related to precipitation than was the case within Clade 2. Comparison of the ecological profiles of sympatric species and sister species support the idea that phylogenetic proximity is related to ecological similarity. Anopheles albitarsis I, An. janconnae, and An. marajoara ENMs had the highest percentage of their predicted suitable habitat overlapping distribution models of Plasmodium falciparum and P. vivax, and warrant additional studies of the transmission potential of these species. Phylogenetic proximity may be related to malaria vectorial importance within the Albitarsis Group. PMID:24820570

  9. Cadmium contamination in Tianjin agricultural soils and sediments: relative importance of atmospheric deposition from coal combustion.

    PubMed

    Wu, Guanghong; Yang, Cancan; Guo, Lan; Wang, Zhongliang

    2013-06-01

    Cadmium (Cd) in coal, fly ash, slag, atmospheric deposition, soils and sediments collected from Tianjin, northern China, were measured to provide baseline information and determine possible Cd sources and potential risk. The concentrations of Cd in coal, fly ash and atmospheric deposition were much higher than the soil background values. Fallout from coal-fired thermal power plants, heating boilers and industrial furnaces has increased the Cd concentration in soils and sediments in Tianjin. The concentrations of Cd in soils of suburban areas were significantly higher than in rural areas, suggesting that coal burning in Tianjin may have an important impact on the local physical environment. Cd from coal combustion is readily mobilized in soils. It is soluble and can form aqueous complexes and permeate river sediments. The high proportion of mobile Cd affects the migration of Cd in soils and sediments, which may pose an environmental threat in Tianjin due to the exposure to Cd and Cd compounds via the food chain. This study may provide a window for understanding and tracing sources of Cd in the local environment and the risk associated with Cd bioaccessibility.

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

    USGS Publications Warehouse

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

    2008-01-01

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

  11. Effectiveness of an innovative prototype subtracted diversity array (SDA) for fingerprinting plant species of medicinal importance.

    PubMed

    Jayasinghe, Ruchira; Hai Niu, Lin; Coram, Tristan E; Kong, Stephan; Kaganovitch, Janna; Xue, Charlie C L; Li, Chun G; Pang, Edwin C K

    2009-08-01

    The accurate identification of medicinal plants is becoming increasingly important due to reported concerns about purity, quality and safety. The previously developed prototype subtracted diversity array (SDA) had been validated for the ability to distinguish clade-level targets in a phylogenetically accurate manner. This study represents the rigorous investigation of the SDA for genotyping capabilities, including the genotyping of plant species not included during the construction of the SDA, as well as to lower classification levels including family and species. The results show that the SDA, in its current form, has the ability to accurately genotype species not included during SDA development to clade level. Additionally, for those species that were included during SDA development, genotyping is successful to the family level, and to the species level with minor exceptions. Twenty polymorphic SDA features were sequenced in a first attempt to characterize the polymorphic DNA between species, which showed that transposon-like sequences may be valuable as polymorphic features to differentiate angiosperm families and species. Future refinements of the SDA to allow more sensitive genotyping are discussed with the overall goal of accurate medicinal plant identification in mind.

  12. European risk assessment of LAS in agricultural soil revisited: species sensitivity distribution and risk estimates.

    PubMed

    Jensen, John; Smith, Stephen R; Krogh, Paul Henning; Versteeg, Donald J; Temara, Ali

    2007-10-01

    Linear alkylbenzene sulphonate (LAS) is used at a rate of approximately 430,000 tons/y in Western Europe, mainly in laundry detergents. It is present in sewage sludge (70-5,600 mg/kg; 5-95th percentile) because of its high usage per capita, its sorption and precipitation in primary settlers, and its lack of degradation in anaerobic digesters. Immediately after amendment, calculated and measured concentrations are <1 to 60 mg LAS/kg soil. LAS biodegrades rapidly in soil with primary and ultimate half-lives of up to 7 and 30 days, respectively. Calculated residual concentrations after the averaging time (30 days) are 0.24-18 mg LAS/kg soil. The long-term ecotoxicity to soil microbiota is relatively low (EC10 >or=26 mg sludge-associated LAS/kg soil). An extensive review of the invertebrate and plant ecotoxicological data, combined with a probabilistic assessment approach, led to a PNEC value of 35 mg LAS/kg soil, i.e. the 5th percentile (HC5) of the species sensitivity distribution (lognormal distribution of the EC10 and NOEC values). Risk ratios were identified to fall within a range of 0.01 (median LAS concentration in sludge) to 0.1 (95th percentile) and always below 0.5 (maximum LAS concentration measured in sludge) according to various scenarios covering different factors such as local sewage influent concentration, water hardness, and sewage sludge stabilisation process. Based on the present information, it can be concluded that LAS does not represent an ecological risk in Western Europe when applied via normal sludge amendment to agricultural soil.

  13. Fullerene-enhanced accumulation of p,p'-DDE in agricultural crop species.

    PubMed

    De La Torre-Roche, Roberto; Hawthorne, Joseph; Deng, Yingqing; Xing, Baoshan; Cai, Wenjun; Newman, Lee A; Wang, Chen; Ma, Xingmao; White, Jason C

    2012-09-04

    The effect of C(60) fullerene exposure on the accumulation of dichlorodiphenyldichloroethylene (p,p'-DDE; DDT metabolite) by Cucurbita pepo L. (zucchini), Glycine max L. (soybean), and Solanum lycopersicum L. (tomato) was determined. The plants were grown in 125 mL jars of vermiculite amended with 0 or 40 mg of C(60) fullerenes. Prior to planting, the jars were amended with 40 mL solution containing 100 ng/mL of p,p'-DDE with 0 or 100 mg/L humic acid. During three weeks of growth, plants were watered with the same p,p'-DDE containing solutions. Total shoot p,p'-DDE levels in nonfullerene exposed tomato, soybean, and zucchini were 26.9, 131, and 675 ng, respectively; total root DDE content for the three plants was 402, 5970, and 5830 ng, respectively. Fullerenes increased the shoot p,p'-DDE content of zucchini by 29%; contaminant levels in soybean shoots were decreased by 48% but tomato shoot content was unaffected. The root and total plant p,p'-DDE content of all three species was significantly increased by fullerene exposure; enhanced contaminant uptake ranged from 30 to 65%. Humic acid, regardless of fullerene presence or plant type, significantly decreased the p,p'-DDE uptake. Fullerenes were detected in the roots of all plants but were not detected in plant shoots in the initial study. In a follow up study with zucchini designed to maximize biomass for extraction, over half the analyzed stems contained fullerenes at 60.5 to 4490 ng/g. These findings show that the carbon-based nanomaterials may significantly alter the accumulation and potentially the toxicity of cocontaminants in agricultural systems.

  14. Larval morphology of Atherigona orientalis (Schiner) (Diptera: Muscidae) -a species of sanitary and forensic importance.

    PubMed

    Grzywacz, Andrzej; Pape, Thomas

    2014-09-01

    Larval morphology is documented using both light and scanning electron microscopy for all three instars of the muscid fly Atherigona orientalis (Schiner), which is a species of known sanitary and forensic importance found in tropical and subtropical areas of all biogeographic regions. The unpaired sclerite in a form of a spicule is reported herein in the second and the third instar larvae. Occurrence of this sclerite was hitherto unknown in the second instar larvae of Muscidae and was only known from the third instar of several species, however not in a form of a spicule. Our study is the first report of the occurrence of the "sensory organ X" in all three larval instars of a species representing the family Muscidae. The bubble membrane, previously known only from third instar cyclorrhaphan larvae, is reported herein for the first time in the second instar. Characters allowing for discrimination of A. orientalis larvae from other forensically important Muscidae are summarised.

  15. Multiple Genome Sequences of the Important Beer-Spoiling Species Lactobacillus backii

    PubMed Central

    Geissler, Andreas J.; Vogel, Rudi F.

    2016-01-01

    Lactobacillus backii is an important beer-spoiling species. Five strains isolated from four different breweries were sequenced using single-molecule real-time sequencing. Five complete genomes were generated, which will help to understand niche adaptation to beer and provide the basis for consecutive analyses. PMID:27563041

  16. A spatially-explicit data driven approach to assess the effect of agricultural land occupation on species groups

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elshout, P.; van Zelm, R.; Karuppiah, R.; Laurenzi, I.; Huijbregts, M.

    2013-12-01

    Change of vegetation cover and increased land use intensity can directly affect the natural habitat and the wildlife it houses. The actual impact of agricultural land use is region specific as crops are grown under various climatic conditions and ways of cultivation and refining. Furthermore, growing a specific crop in a tropical region may require clearance of rainforest while the same crop may replace natural grasslands in temperate regions. Within life cycle impact assessment (LCIA), methods to address impacts of land use on a global scale are still in need of development. We aim to extend existing methods to improve the robustness of LCIA by allowing spatial differentiation of agricultural land use impacts. The goal of this study is to develop characterization factors for the direct impact of land use on biodiversity, which results from the replacement of natural habitat with farmland. The characterization factor expresses the change in species richness under crop cultivation compared to the species richness in the natural situation over a certain area. A second goal was to identify the differences in impacts caused by cultivation of different crop types, sensitivity of different taxonomic groups, and differences in natural land cover. Empirical data on species richness were collected from literature for both natural reference situations and agricultural land use situations. Reference situations were selected on an ecoregion or biome basis. We calculated characterization factors for four crop groups (oil palm, low crops, cereals, and perennial grasses), four species groups (arthropods, birds, mammals, vascular plants), and six biomes.

  17. Importance of Providencia species as a major cause of travellers' diarrhoea.

    PubMed

    Yoh, Myonsun; Matsuyama, Junko; Ohnishi, Motoki; Takagi, Kazuhiro; Miyagi, Hirozane; Mori, Kazuhiro; Park, Kwon-Sam; Ono, Takahiro; Honda, Takeshi

    2005-11-01

    In this study the importance of Providencia species as a cause of travellers' diarrhoea was examined using a selective medium developed by the authors. Providencia species could easily be distinguished from other enteric pathogens by the colour of the colonies obtained. Nine strains of Providencia alcalifaciens, nine of Providencia rettgeri and five of Providencia stuartii were isolated from 130 specimens, representing a surprisingly high incidence of infection compared with other pathogens isolated on SS agar and TCBS agar. Patients infected with P. rettgeri complained of abdominal pain, as for other Providencia species, but also of vomiting, which is rather characteristic of P. rettgeri infection. To analyse the pathogenicity of these isolates, their invasiveness was examined using Caco-2 cells. Most of the P. rettgeri strains invaded Caco-2 cells. Random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) fingerprinting showed the same profile for two P. rettgeri isolates from individuals travelling in the same tour group. The results show that Providencia species, especially P. rettgeri, might cause diarrhoea, and that these species are important pathogens.

  18. Pollen Deposition Is More Important than Species Richness for Seed Set in Luffa Gourd.

    PubMed

    Ali, M; Saeed, S; Sajjad, A

    2016-10-01

    In the context of global biodiversity decline, it is imperative to understand the different aspects of bee communities for sustaining the vital ecosystem service of pollination. Bee species can be assigned to functional groups (average difference among species in functionally related traits) on the basis of complementarity (trait variations exhibited by individual organisms) in their behavior but is not yet known which functional group trait is most important for seed set. In this study, first, the functional groups of bees were made based on their five selected traits (pollen deposition, visitation rate, stay time, visiting time of the day, body size) and then related to the seed set of obligate cross-pollinated Luffa gourd (Luffa aegyptiaca). We found that bee diversity and abundance differed significantly among the studied plots, but only the bee species richness was positively related to the seed set. Functional group diversity in terms of pollen deposition explained even more of the variance in seed set (r (2) = 0.74) than did the species richness (r (2) = 0.53) making it the most important trait of bee species for predicting the crop reproductive success.

  19. A report on identification of sequence polymorphism in barcode region of six commercially important Cymbopogon species.

    PubMed

    Bishoyi, Ashok Kumar; Kavane, Aarti; Sharma, Anjali; Geetha, K A

    2017-02-01

    CYMBOPOGON: is an important member of grass family Poaceae, cultivated for essential oils which have greater medicinal and industrial value. Taxonomic identification of Cymbopogon species is determined mainly by morphological markers, odour of essential oils and concentration of bioactive compounds present in the oil matrices which are highly influenced by environment. Authenticated molecular marker based taxonomical identification is also lacking in the genus; hence effort was made to evaluate potential DNA barcode loci in six commercially important Cymbopogon species for their individual discrimination and authentication at the species level. Four widely used DNA barcoding regions viz., ITS 1 & ITS 2 spacers, matK, psbA-trnH and rbcL were taken for the study. Gene sequences of the same or related genera of the concerned loci were mined from NCBI domain and primers were designed and validated for barcode loci amplification. Out of the four loci studied, sequences from matK and ITS spacer loci revealed 0.46% and 5.64% nucleotide sequence diversity, respectively whereas the other two loci i.e., psbA-trnH and rbcL showed 100% sequence homology. The newly developed primers can be used for barcode loci amplification in the genus Cymbopogon. The identified Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms from the studied sequences may be used as barcodes for the six Cymbopogon species. The information generated can also be utilized for barcode development of the genus by including more number of Cymbopgon species in future.

  20. Honeybees Increase Fruit Set in Native Plant Species Important for Wildlife Conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cayuela, Luis; Ruiz-Arriaga, Sarah; Ozers, Christian P.

    2011-11-01

    Honeybee colonies are declining in some parts of the world. This may have important consequences for the pollination of crops and native plant species. In Spain, as in other parts of Europe, land abandonment has led to a decrease in the number of non professional beekeepers, which aggravates the problem of honeybee decline as a result of bee diseases In this study, we investigated the effects of honeybees on the pollination of three native plant species in northern Spain, namely wildcherry Prunus avium L., hawthorn Crataegus monogyna Jacq., and bilberry Vaccinium myrtillus L. We quantified fruit set of individuals from the target species along transects established from an apiary outwards. Half the samples were bagged in a nylon mesh to avoid insect pollination. Mixed-effects models were used to test the effect of distance to the apiary on fruit set in non-bagged samples. The results showed a negative significant effect of distance from the apiary on fruit set for hawthorn and bilberry, but no significant effects were detected for wildcherry. This suggests that the use of honeybees under traditional farming practices might be a good instrument to increase fruit production of some native plants. This may have important consequences for wildlife conservation, since fruits, and bilberries in particular, constitute an important feeding resource for endangered species, such as the brown bear Ursus arctos L. or the capercaillie Tetrao urogallus cantabricus L.

  1. Honeybees increase fruit set in native plant species important for wildlife conservation.

    PubMed

    Cayuela, Luis; Ruiz-Arriaga, Sarah; Ozers, Christian P

    2011-11-01

    Honeybee colonies are declining in some parts of the world. This may have important consequences for the pollination of crops and native plant species. In Spain, as in other parts of Europe, land abandonment has led to a decrease in the number of non professional beekeepers, which aggravates the problem of honeybee decline as a result of bee diseases In this study, we investigated the effects of honeybees on the pollination of three native plant species in northern Spain, namely wildcherry Prunus avium L., hawthorn Crataegus monogyna Jacq., and bilberry Vaccinium myrtillus L. We quantified fruit set of individuals from the target species along transects established from an apiary outwards. Half the samples were bagged in a nylon mesh to avoid insect pollination. Mixed-effects models were used to test the effect of distance to the apiary on fruit set in non-bagged samples. The results showed a negative significant effect of distance from the apiary on fruit set for hawthorn and bilberry, but no significant effects were detected for wild cherry. This suggests that the use of honeybees under traditional farming practices might be a good instrument to increase fruit production of some native plants. This may have important consequences for wildlife conservation, since fruits, and bilberries in particular, constitute an important feeding resource for endangered species, such as the brown bear Ursus arctos L. or the capercaillie Tetrao urogallus cantabricus L.

  2. Estimation of soil erosion risk within an important agricultural sub-watershed in Bursa, Turkey, in relation to rapid urbanization.

    PubMed

    Ozsoy, Gokhan; Aksoy, Ertugrul

    2015-07-01

    This paper integrates the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE) with a GIS model to investigate the spatial distribution of annual soil loss and identify areas of soil erosion risk in the Uluabat sub-watershed, an important agricultural site in Bursa Province, Turkey. The total soil loss from water erosion was 473,274 Mg year(-1). Accordingly, 60.3% of the surveyed area was classified into a very low erosion risk class while 25.7% was found to be in high and severe erosion risk classes. Soil loss had a close relationship with land use and topography. The most severe erosion risk typically occurs on ridges and steep slopes where agriculture, degraded forest, and shrubs are the main land uses and cover types. Another goal of this study was to use GIS to reveal the multi-year urbanization status caused by rapid urbanization that constitutes another soil erosion risk in this area. Urbanization has increased by 57.7% and the most areal change was determined in class I lands at a rate of 80% over 25 years. Urbanization was identified as one of the causes of excessive soil loss in the study area.

  3. Identifying major pesticides affecting bivalve species exposed to agricultural pollution using multi-biomarker and multivariate methods.

    PubMed

    Damásio, Joana; Navarro-Ortega, Alícia; Tauler, Romà; Lacorte, Silvia; Barceló, Damià; Soares, Amadeu M V M; López, Miguel Angel; Riva, Mari Carmen; Barata, Carlos

    2010-08-01

    The aim of this investigation was to identify major pesticides that may cause detrimental effects in bivalve species affected by agricultural pollution. Investigations were carried out using freshwater clams (Corbicula fluminea) transplanted in the main drainage channels that collect the effluents coming from agriculture fields in the Ebro Delta (NE Spain) during the main growing season of rice (from May to August). Environmental hazards were assessed by measuring simultaneous up 46 contaminant levels and 9 biomarker responses. Measured biological responses showed marked differences across sites and months. Antioxidant and esterase enzyme responses were in most cases inhibited. Lipid peroxidation levels increased steadily from May in upstream stations to August in drainage channels. Principal Component (PCA) and Partial Least Squares to Latent Structure regression (PLS) analyses allowed the identification of endosulfan, propanil, and phenylureas as being the chemical contaminants causing the most adverse effects in the studied species.

  4. Microbial effects on the development of forensically important blow fly species.

    PubMed

    Crooks, Esther R; Bulling, Mark T; Barnes, Kate M

    2016-09-01

    Colonisation times and development rates of specific blow fly species are used to estimate the minimum Post Mortem Interval (mPMI). The presence or absence of bacteria on a corpse can potentially affect the development and survival of blow fly larvae. Therefore an understanding of microbial-insect interactions is important for improving the interpretation of mPMI estimations. In this study, the effect of two bacteria (Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus) on the growth rate and survival of three forensically important blow fly species (Lucilia sericata, Calliphora vicina and Calliphora vomitoria) was investigated. Sterile larvae were raised in a controlled environment (16:8h day: night light cycle, 23:21°C day: night temperature cycle and a constant 35% relative humidity) on four artificial diets prepared with 100μl of 10(5) CFU bacterial solutions as follows: (1) E. coli, (2) S. aureus, (3) a 50:50 E. coli:S. aureus mix and (4) a sterile bacteria-free control diet. Daily measurements (length, width and weight) were taken from first instar larvae through to the emergence of adult flies. Survival rates were also determined at pupation and adult emergence. Results indicate that bacteria were not essential for the development of any of the blow fly species. However, larval growth rates were affected by bacterial diet, with effects differing between blow fly species. Peak larval weights also varied according to species-diet combination; C. vomitoria had the largest weight on E. coli and mixed diets, C. vicina had the largest weight on S. aureus diets, and treatment had no significant effect on the peak larval weight of L. sericata. These results indicate the potential for the bacteria that larvae are exposed to during development on a corpse to alter both developmental rates and larval weight in some blow fly species.

  5. An Overview of Important Ethnomedicinal Herbs of Phyllanthus Species: Present Status and Future Prospects

    PubMed Central

    Sarin, Bharti; Martín, Juan Pedro; Mohanty, Aparajita

    2014-01-01

    The genus Phyllanthus consists of more than 1000 species, of which many are used as traditional medicines. The plant extracts have been used since ancient times, for treating hypertension, diabetes, hepatic, urinary, and sexual disorders, and other common ailments. Modern day scientific investigations have now confirmed pharmacognostic properties of Phyllanthus herbs. The phytochemicals attributing these medicinal properties have been identified in many of the Phyllanthus herbs. The morphologically similar herbs of Phyllanthus grow together and admixture of species during collection for manufacture of herbal medicines is quite common. Hence, along with pharmacognostic and phytochemical studies, appropriate protocols for correct identification of species are also important. As the use of these herbs as green medicines is becoming more popular, it is imperative to assess its genetic diversity and phylogenetic relatedness for future conservation strategies. This review is an attempt to present an overview of the existing studies on pharmacognostics, phytochemistry, species identification, and genetic diversity of Phyllanthus herbs and consequently (i) highlight areas where further research is needed and (ii) draw attention towards extending similar studies in underutilized but potentially important herbs such as P. maderaspatensis, P. kozhikodianus, P. rheedii, P. scabrifolius, and P. rotundifolius. PMID:24672382

  6. An overview of important ethnomedicinal herbs of Phyllanthus species: present status and future prospects.

    PubMed

    Sarin, Bharti; Verma, Nidhi; Martín, Juan Pedro; Mohanty, Aparajita

    2014-01-01

    The genus Phyllanthus consists of more than 1000 species, of which many are used as traditional medicines. The plant extracts have been used since ancient times, for treating hypertension, diabetes, hepatic, urinary, and sexual disorders, and other common ailments. Modern day scientific investigations have now confirmed pharmacognostic properties of Phyllanthus herbs. The phytochemicals attributing these medicinal properties have been identified in many of the Phyllanthus herbs. The morphologically similar herbs of Phyllanthus grow together and admixture of species during collection for manufacture of herbal medicines is quite common. Hence, along with pharmacognostic and phytochemical studies, appropriate protocols for correct identification of species are also important. As the use of these herbs as green medicines is becoming more popular, it is imperative to assess its genetic diversity and phylogenetic relatedness for future conservation strategies. This review is an attempt to present an overview of the existing studies on pharmacognostics, phytochemistry, species identification, and genetic diversity of Phyllanthus herbs and consequently (i) highlight areas where further research is needed and (ii) draw attention towards extending similar studies in underutilized but potentially important herbs such as P. maderaspatensis, P. kozhikodianus, P. rheedii, P. scabrifolius, and P. rotundifolius.

  7. Importance of riparian remnants for frog species diversity in a highly fragmented rainforest

    PubMed Central

    Rodríguez-Mendoza, Clara; Pineda, Eduardo

    2010-01-01

    Tropical forests undergo continuous transformation to other land uses, resulting in landscapes typified by forest fragments surrounded by anthropogenic habitats. Small forest fragments, specifically strip-shaped remnants flanking streams (referred to as riparian remnants), can be particularly important for the maintenance and conservation of biodiversity within highly fragmented forests. We compared frog species diversity between riparian remnants, other forest fragments and cattle pastures in a tropical landscape in Los Tuxtlas, Mexico. We found similar species richness in the three habitats studied and a similar assemblage structure between riparian remnants and forest fragments, although species composition differed by 50 per cent. Frog abundance was halved in riparian remnants compared with forest fragments, but was twice that found in pastures. Our results suggest that riparian remnants play an important role in maintaining a portion of frog species diversity in a highly fragmented forest, particularly during environmentally stressful (hot and dry) periods. In this regard, however, the role of riparian remnants is complementary, rather than substitutive, with respect to the function of other forest fragments within the fragmented forest. PMID:20554561

  8. Meeting the Vitamin A Requirement: The Efficacy and Importance of β-Carotene in Animal Species

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Vitamin A is essential for life in all vertebrate animals. Vitamin A requirement can be met from dietary preformed vitamin A or provitamin A carotenoids, the most important of which is β-carotene. The metabolism of β-carotene, including its intestinal absorption, accumulation in tissues, and conversion to vitamin A, varies widely across animal species and determines the role that β-carotene plays in meeting vitamin A requirement. This review begins with a brief discussion of vitamin A, with an emphasis on species differences in metabolism. A more detailed discussion of β-carotene follows, with a focus on factors impacting bioavailability and its conversion to vitamin A. Finally, the literature on how animals utilize β-carotene is reviewed individually for several species and classes of animals. We conclude that β-carotene conversion to vitamin A is variable and dependent on a number of factors, which are important to consider in the formulation and assessment of diets. Omnivores and herbivores are more efficient at converting β-carotene to vitamin A than carnivores. Absorption and accumulation of β-carotene in tissues vary with species and are poorly understood. More comparative and mechanistic studies are required in this area to improve the understanding of β-carotene metabolism. PMID:27833936

  9. Distinguishing the importance between habitat specialization and dispersal limitation on species turnover.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shixiong; Wang, Xiaoan; Guo, Hua; Fan, Weiyi; Lv, Haiying; Duan, Renyan

    2013-09-01

    Understanding what governs community assembly and the maintenance of biodiversity is a central issue in ecology, but has been a continuing debate. A key question is the relative importance of habitat specialization (niche assembly) and dispersal limitation (dispersal assembly). In the middle of the Loess Plateau, northwestern China, we examined how species turnover in Liaodong oak (Quercus wutaishanica) forests differed between observed and randomized assemblies, and how this difference was affected by habitat specialization and dispersal limitation using variation partitioning. Results showed that expected species turnover based on individual randomization was significantly lower than the observed value (P < 0.01). The turnover deviation significantly depended on the environmental and geographical distances (P < 0.05). Environmental and spatial variables significantly explained approximately 40% of the species composition variation at all the three layers (P < 0.05). However, their contributions varied among forest layers; the herb and shrub layers were dominated by environmental factors, whereas the canopy layer was dominated by spatial factors. Our results underscore the importance of synthetic models that integrate effects of both dispersal and niche assembly for understanding the community assembly. However, habitat specialization (niche assembly) may not always be the dominant process in community assembly, even under harsh environments. Community assembly may be in a trait-dependent manner (e.g., forest layers in this study). Thus, taking more species traits into account would strengthen our confidence in the inferred assembly mechanisms.

  10. Distinguishing the importance between habitat specialization and dispersal limitation on species turnover

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shixiong; Wang, Xiaoan; Guo, Hua; Fan, Weiyi; Lv, Haiying; Duan, Renyan

    2013-01-01

    Understanding what governs community assembly and the maintenance of biodiversity is a central issue in ecology, but has been a continuing debate. A key question is the relative importance of habitat specialization (niche assembly) and dispersal limitation (dispersal assembly). In the middle of the Loess Plateau, northwestern China, we examined how species turnover in Liaodong oak (Quercus wutaishanica) forests differed between observed and randomized assemblies, and how this difference was affected by habitat specialization and dispersal limitation using variation partitioning. Results showed that expected species turnover based on individual randomization was significantly lower than the observed value (P < 0.01). The turnover deviation significantly depended on the environmental and geographical distances (P < 0.05). Environmental and spatial variables significantly explained approximately 40% of the species composition variation at all the three layers (P < 0.05). However, their contributions varied among forest layers; the herb and shrub layers were dominated by environmental factors, whereas the canopy layer was dominated by spatial factors. Our results underscore the importance of synthetic models that integrate effects of both dispersal and niche assembly for understanding the community assembly. However, habitat specialization (niche assembly) may not always be the dominant process in community assembly, even under harsh environments. Community assembly may be in a trait-dependent manner (e.g., forest layers in this study). Thus, taking more species traits into account would strengthen our confidence in the inferred assembly mechanisms. PMID:24223289

  11. Assessment of oil content and fatty acid composition variability in two economically important Hibiscus species.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ming Li; Morris, Brad; Tonnis, Brandon; Davis, Jerry; Pederson, Gary A

    2012-07-04

    The Hibiscus genus encompasses more than 300 species, but kenaf (Hibiscus cannabinus L.) and roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa L.) are the two most economically important species within the genus. Seeds from these two Hibiscus species contain a relatively high amount of oil with two unusual fatty acids: dihydrosterculic and vernolic acids. The fatty acid composition in the oil can directly affect oil quality and its utilization. However, the variability in oil content and fatty acid composition for these two species is unclear. For these two species, 329 available accessions were acquired from the USDA germplasm collection. Their oil content and fatty acid composition were determined by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and gas chromatography (GC), respectively. Using NMR and GC analyses, we found that Hibiscus seeds on average contained 18% oil and seed oil was composed of six major fatty acids (each >1%) and seven minor fatty acids (each <1%). Hibiscus cannabinus seeds contained significantly higher amounts of oil (18.14%), palmitic (20.75%), oleic (28.91%), vernolic acids (VA, 4.16%), and significantly lower amounts of stearic (3.96%), linoleic (39.49%), and dihydrosterculic acids (DHSA, 1.08%) than H. sabdariffa seeds (17.35%, 18.52%, 25.16%, 3.52%, 4.31%, 44.72%, and 1.57%, respectively). For edible oils, a higher oleic/linoleic (O/L) ratio and lower level of DHSA are preferred, and for industrial oils a high level of VA is preferred. Our results indicate that seeds from H. cannabinus may be of higher quality than H. sabdariffa seeds for these reasons. Significant variability in oil content and major fatty acids was also detected within both species. The variability in oil content and fatty acid composition revealed from this study will be useful for exploring seed utilization and developing new cultivars in these Hibiscus species.

  12. Insects associated with hospital environment in Egypt with special reference to the medically important species.

    PubMed

    Kenawy, Mohamed A; Amer, Hanan S; Lotfy, Nadia M; Khamis, Nagwa; Abdel-Hamid, Yousrya M

    2014-12-01

    A study was planned to examine the insect fauna associated with two hospitals: urban (A) in Cairo and rural (B) in Banha, Egypt with varying hygienic levels and their adjacent residential areas (AC) and (BC), respectively and to investigate the effect of hygienic level on species composition and relative abundance. A total of 22 species belonging to 7 orders and 15 families were reported in the four study areas of which, Dipterous flies were the most common (8/22, 36.36% species). A total of 5257 adults were collected of which Dipterous flies were the abundant (3800, 72.28% insect) and Musca domestica was the most abundant species (3535, 67.24% insect) which was present in all areas where it was more common / predominant species (21.94%-90.91% insect). Moreover, higher densities of M domestica were in (B) and BC than in (A) or (AC). The heavily infested area was AC (54.55% species) followed by (A), (BC) and (B) however, the total number of the collected insects was higher in (BC) and (B) than in (AC) and (A). This was confirmed by finding maximum diversity indices in (AC) and minimum ones in B. In all areas, means of M domestica was more common during summer/autumn and spring than in the winter. Periplaneta americana collected oily during autumn in AC and was more common in autumn in (BC) while Blatella germanica collected only during summer in (AC) and was more common in autumn in (B). The prevalence and higher abundance of the medically important species mainly M domestica, P. americana and B. germanica in rural hospital than in urban one attribute mainly to the lower hygienic level of rural hospital This require a control program based mainly on sanitation supplemented by other measures to overcome the risk of disease transmission by such insects

  13. New species, hyper-diversity and potential importance of Calonectria spp. from Eucalyptus in South China

    PubMed Central

    Lombard, L.; Chen, S.F.; Mou, X.; Zhou, X.D.; Crous, P.W.; Wingfield, M.J.

    2015-01-01

    Plantation forestry is expanding rapidly in China to meet an increasing demand for wood and pulp products globally. Fungal pathogens including species of Calonectria represent a serious threat to the growth and sustainability of this industry. Surveys were conducted in the Guangdong, Guangxi and Hainan Provinces of South China, where Eucalyptus trees in plantations or cuttings in nurseries displayed symptoms of leaf blight. Isolations from symptomatic leaves and soils collected close to infected trees resulted in a large collection of Calonectria isolates. These isolates were identified using the Consolidated Species Concept, employing morphological characters and DNA sequence comparisons for the β-tubulin, calmodulin, histone H3 and translation elongation factor 1-alpha gene regions. Twenty-one Calonectria species were identified of which 18 represented novel taxa. Of these, 12 novel taxa belonged to Sphaero-Naviculate Group and the remaining six to the Prolate Group. Southeast Asia appears to represent a centre of biodiversity for the Sphaero-Naviculate Group and this fact could be one of the important constraints to Eucalyptus forestry in China. The remarkable diversity of Calonectria species in a relatively small area of China and associated with a single tree species is surprising. PMID:26955194

  14. The importance of range edges for an irruptive species during extreme weather events

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bateman, Brooke L.; Pidgeon, Anna M.; Radeloff, Volker C.; Allstadt, Andrew J.; Akçakaya, H. Resit; Thogmartin, Wayne E.; Vavrus, Stephen J.; Heglund, Patricia J.

    2015-01-01

    In a changing climate where more frequent extreme weather may be more common, conservation strategies for weather-sensitive species may require consideration of habitat in the edges of species’ ranges, even though non-core areas may be unoccupied in ‘normal’ years. Our results highlight the conservation importance of range edges in providing refuge from extreme events, such as drought, and climate change.

  15. Evolution and Phylogenetic Diversity of Yam Species (Dioscorea spp.): Implication for Conservation and Agricultural Practices.

    PubMed

    Ngo Ngwe, Marie Florence Sandrine; Omokolo, Denis Ndoumou; Joly, Simon

    2015-01-01

    Yams (Dioscorea spp.) consist of approximately 600 species. Presently, these species are threatened by genetic erosion due to many factors such as pest attacks and farming practices. In parallel, complex taxonomic boundaries in this genus makes it more challenging to properly address the genetic diversity of yam and manage its germplasm. As a first step toward evaluating and preserving the genetic diversity yam species, we use a phylogenetic diversity (PD) approach that has the advantage to investigate phylogenetic relationships and test hypotheses of species monophyly while alleviating to the problem of ploidy variation within and among species. The Bayesian phylogenetic analysis of 62 accessions from 7 species from three regions of Cameroon showed that most Dioscorea sections were monophyletic, but species within sections were generally non-monophyletic. The wild species D. praehensilis and cultivated D. cayenensis were the species with the highest PD. At the opposite, D. esculenta has a low PD and future studies should focus on this species to properly address its conservation status. We also show that wild species show a stronger genetic structure than cultivated species, which potentially reflects the management of the yam germplasm by farmers. These findings show that phylogenetic diversity is a promising approach for an initial investigation of genetic diversity in a crop consisting of closely related species.

  16. Is agriculture driving the diversification of the Bemisia tabaci species complex (Hemiptera: Sternorrhyncha: Aleyrodidae)?: Dating, diversification and biogeographic evidence revealed

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Humans and insect herbivores are competing for the same food crops and have been for thousands of years. Despite considerable advances in crop pest management, losses due to insects remain considerable. The global homogenisation of agriculture has supported the range expansion of numerous insect pests and has been driven in part by human-assisted dispersal supported through rapid global trade and low-cost air passenger transport. One of these pests, is the whitefly, Bemisia tabaci, a cryptic species complex that contains some of the world’s most damaging pests of agriculture. The complex shows considerable genetic diversity and strong phylogeographic relationships. One consequence of the considerable impact that members of the B. tabaci complex have on agriculture, is the view that human activity, particularly in relation to agricultural practices, such as use of insecticides, has driven the diversification found within the species complex. This has been particularly so in the case of two members of the complex, Middle East-Asia Minor 1 (MEAM1) and Mediterranean (MED), which have become globally distributed invasive species. An alternative hypothesis is that diversification is due to paleogeographic and paleoclimatological changes. Results The idea that human activity is driving speciation within the B. tabaci complex has never been tested, but the increased interest in fossil whiteflies and the growth in molecular data have enabled us to apply a relaxed molecular clock and so estimate divergence dates for the major lineages within the B. tabaci species complex. The divergence estimates do not support the view that human activity has been a major driver of diversification. Conclusions Our analysis suggests that the major lineages within the complex arose approximately 60–30 mya and the highly invasive MED and MEAM1 split from the rest of the species complex around 12 mya well before the evolution of Homo sapiens and agriculture. Furthermore, the

  17. Diel flight behaviour and dispersal patterns of aquatic Coleoptera and Heteroptera species with special emphasis on the importance of seasons.

    PubMed

    Csabai, Zoltán; Kálmán, Zoltán; Szivák, Ildikó; Boda, Pál

    2012-09-01

    Dispersal flight is the most important and almost the only way for primary aquatic insects to find new water habitats. During a 30-week-long project, we monitored the flight dispersal behaviour of aquatic beetles and bugs with using highly and horizontally polarizing agricultural black plastic sheets laid onto the ground. Based on the flight data of more than 45,000 individuals and 92 species, we explored and described eight different diel flight activity patterns. We found that seven of eight dispersal patterns are consistent with the previous knowledge, while three conspicuous mass dispersal periods can be identified as in the mid morning and/or around noon and/or at nightfall. As an exception, we found a 'daytime' pattern occurred exclusively in spring, in which mass dispersal can be seen from mid morning to late afternoon. In contrast to previous studies, we emphasize here that the seasonality has to be considered in evaluation of the diurnal flight activity. According to the seasons, a 'three code sign' was proposed to indicate the diel dispersal flight behaviour of a species for a year. Most of the species utilize different diel activity patterns in different seasons. In spring, the daytime pattern was the preferred type, but in summer and autumn, the evening types were the most popular patterns. We stated that the seasonal change of air temperature has a crucial role in that a pattern could be manifested in a given season or not and brings a need to change the diel dispersal pattern among seasons.

  18. Diel flight behaviour and dispersal patterns of aquatic Coleoptera and Heteroptera species with special emphasis on the importance of seasons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Csabai, Zoltán; Kálmán, Zoltán; Szivák, Ildikó; Boda, Pál

    2012-09-01

    Dispersal flight is the most important and almost the only way for primary aquatic insects to find new water habitats. During a 30-week-long project, we monitored the flight dispersal behaviour of aquatic beetles and bugs with using highly and horizontally polarizing agricultural black plastic sheets laid onto the ground. Based on the flight data of more than 45,000 individuals and 92 species, we explored and described eight different diel flight activity patterns. We found that seven of eight dispersal patterns are consistent with the previous knowledge, while three conspicuous mass dispersal periods can be identified as in the mid morning and/or around noon and/or at nightfall. As an exception, we found a `daytime' pattern occurred exclusively in spring, in which mass dispersal can be seen from mid morning to late afternoon. In contrast to previous studies, we emphasize here that the seasonality has to be considered in evaluation of the diurnal flight activity. According to the seasons, a `three code sign' was proposed to indicate the diel dispersal flight behaviour of a species for a year. Most of the species utilize different diel activity patterns in different seasons. In spring, the daytime pattern was the preferred type, but in summer and autumn, the evening types were the most popular patterns. We stated that the seasonal change of air temperature has a crucial role in that a pattern could be manifested in a given season or not and brings a need to change the diel dispersal pattern among seasons.

  19. Conditions Promoting Mycorrhizal Parasitism Are of Minor Importance for Competitive Interactions in Two Differentially Mycotrophic Species

    PubMed Central

    Friede, Martina; Unger, Stephan; Hellmann, Christine; Beyschlag, Wolfram

    2016-01-01

    Interactions of plants with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) may range along a broad continuum from strong mutualism to parasitism, with mycorrhizal benefits received by the plant being determined by climatic and edaphic conditions affecting the balance between carbon costs vs. nutritional benefits. Thus, environmental conditions promoting either parasitism or mutualism can influence the mycorrhizal growth dependency (MGD) of a plant and in consequence may play an important role in plant-plant interactions. In a multifactorial field experiment we aimed at disentangling the effects of environmental and edaphic conditions, namely the availability of light, phosphorus and nitrogen, and the implications for competitive interactions between Hieracium pilosella and Corynephorus canescens for the outcome of the AMF symbiosis. Both species were planted in single, intraspecific and interspecific combinations using a target-neighbor approach with six treatments distributed along a gradient simulating conditions for the interaction between plants and AMF ranking from mutualistic to parasitic. Across all treatments we found mycorrhizal association of H. pilosella being consistently mutualistic, while pronounced parasitism was observed in C. canescens, indicating that environmental and edaphic conditions did not markedly affect the cost:benefit ratio of the mycorrhizal symbiosis in both species. Competitive interactions between both species were strongly affected by AMF, with the impact of AMF on competition being modulated by colonization. Biomass in both species was lowest when grown in interspecific competition, with colonization being increased in the less mycotrophic C. canescens, while decreased in the obligate mycotrophic H. pilosella. Although parasitism-promoting conditions negatively affected MGD in C. canescens, these effects were small as compared to growth decreases related to increased colonization levels in this species. Thus, the lack of plant control over

  20. Conditions Promoting Mycorrhizal Parasitism Are of Minor Importance for Competitive Interactions in Two Differentially Mycotrophic Species.

    PubMed

    Friede, Martina; Unger, Stephan; Hellmann, Christine; Beyschlag, Wolfram

    2016-01-01

    Interactions of plants with arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) may range along a broad continuum from strong mutualism to parasitism, with mycorrhizal benefits received by the plant being determined by climatic and edaphic conditions affecting the balance between carbon costs vs. nutritional benefits. Thus, environmental conditions promoting either parasitism or mutualism can influence the mycorrhizal growth dependency (MGD) of a plant and in consequence may play an important role in plant-plant interactions. In a multifactorial field experiment we aimed at disentangling the effects of environmental and edaphic conditions, namely the availability of light, phosphorus and nitrogen, and the implications for competitive interactions between Hieracium pilosella and Corynephorus canescens for the outcome of the AMF symbiosis. Both species were planted in single, intraspecific and interspecific combinations using a target-neighbor approach with six treatments distributed along a gradient simulating conditions for the interaction between plants and AMF ranking from mutualistic to parasitic. Across all treatments we found mycorrhizal association of H. pilosella being consistently mutualistic, while pronounced parasitism was observed in C. canescens, indicating that environmental and edaphic conditions did not markedly affect the cost:benefit ratio of the mycorrhizal symbiosis in both species. Competitive interactions between both species were strongly affected by AMF, with the impact of AMF on competition being modulated by colonization. Biomass in both species was lowest when grown in interspecific competition, with colonization being increased in the less mycotrophic C. canescens, while decreased in the obligate mycotrophic H. pilosella. Although parasitism-promoting conditions negatively affected MGD in C. canescens, these effects were small as compared to growth decreases related to increased colonization levels in this species. Thus, the lack of plant control over

  1. Phenological adjustment in arctic bird species: relative importance of snow melt and ecological factors

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Liebezeit, Joseph R.; Gurney, K. E. B.; Budde, Michael E.; Zack, Steve; Ward, David H.

    2014-01-01

    Previous studies have documented advancement in clutch initiation dates (CIDs) in response to climate change, most notably for temperate-breeding passerines. Despite accelerated climate change in the Arctic, few studies have examined nest phenology shifts in arctic breeding species. We investigated whether CIDs have advanced for the most abundant breeding shorebird and passerine species at a long-term monitoring site in arctic Alaska. We pooled data from three additional nearby sites to determine the explanatory power of snow melt and ecological variables (predator abundance, green-up) on changes in breeding phenology. As predicted, all species (semipalmated sandpiper, Calidris pusilla, pectoral sandpiper, Calidris melanotos, red-necked phalarope, Phalaropus lobatus, red phalarope, Phalaropus fulicarius, Lapland longspur, Calcarius lapponicus) exhibited advanced CIDs ranging from 0.40 to 0.80 days/year over 9 years. Timing of snow melt was the most important variable in explaining clutch initiation advancement (“climate/snow hypothesis”) for four of the five species, while green-up was a much less important explanatory factor. We found no evidence that high predator abundances led to earlier laying dates (“predator/re-nest hypothesis”). Our results support previous arctic studies in that climate change in the cryosphere will have a strong impact on nesting phenology although factors explaining changes in nest phenology are not necessarily uniform across the entire Arctic. Our results suggest some arctic-breeding shorebird and passerine species are altering their breeding phenology to initiate nesting earlier enabling them to, at least temporarily, avoid the negative consequences of a trophic mismatch.

  2. Hidden biodiversity in an ecologically important freshwater amphipod: differences in genetic structure between two cryptic species.

    PubMed

    Westram, Anja Marie; Jokela, Jukka; Keller, Irene

    2013-01-01

    Cryptic species, i.e. species that are morphologically hard to distinguish, have been detected repeatedly in various taxa and ecosystems. In order to evaluate the importance of this finding, we have to know in how far cryptic species differ in various aspects of their biology. The amphipod Gammarus fossarum is a key invertebrate in freshwater streams and contains several cryptic species. We examined the population genetic structure, genetic diversity and demographic history of two of them (type A and type B) using microsatellite markers and asked whether they show significant differences. We present results of population genetic analyses based on a total of 37 populations from the headwaters of two major European drainages, Rhine and Rhone. We found that, in both species, genetic diversity was geographically structured among and within drainages. For type A in the Rhine and type B in the Rhone, we detected significant patterns of isolation by distance. The increase of genetic differentiation with geographical distance, however, was much higher in type A than in type B. This result indicates substantial interspecific differences in population history and/or the extent of current gene flow between populations. In the Rhine, type B does not show evidence of isolation by distance, and population differentiation is relatively low across hundreds of kilometres. The majority of these populations also show signatures of recent bottlenecks. These patterns are consistent with a recent expansion of type B into the Rhine drainage. In summary, our results suggest considerable and previously unrecognized interspecific differences in the genetic structure of these cryptic keystone species.

  3. Hidden Biodiversity in an Ecologically Important Freshwater Amphipod: Differences in Genetic Structure between Two Cryptic Species

    PubMed Central

    Westram, Anja Marie; Jokela, Jukka; Keller, Irene

    2013-01-01

    Cryptic species, i.e. species that are morphologically hard to distinguish, have been detected repeatedly in various taxa and ecosystems. In order to evaluate the importance of this finding, we have to know in how far cryptic species differ in various aspects of their biology. The amphipod Gammarus fossarum is a key invertebrate in freshwater streams and contains several cryptic species. We examined the population genetic structure, genetic diversity and demographic history of two of them (type A and type B) using microsatellite markers and asked whether they show significant differences. We present results of population genetic analyses based on a total of 37 populations from the headwaters of two major European drainages, Rhine and Rhone. We found that, in both species, genetic diversity was geographically structured among and within drainages. For type A in the Rhine and type B in the Rhone, we detected significant patterns of isolation by distance. The increase of genetic differentiation with geographical distance, however, was much higher in type A than in type B. This result indicates substantial interspecific differences in population history and/or the extent of current gene flow between populations. In the Rhine, type B does not show evidence of isolation by distance, and population differentiation is relatively low across hundreds of kilometres. The majority of these populations also show signatures of recent bottlenecks. These patterns are consistent with a recent expansion of type B into the Rhine drainage. In summary, our results suggest considerable and previously unrecognized interspecific differences in the genetic structure of these cryptic keystone species. PMID:23967060

  4. Identification of Medically Important Yeast Species by Sequence Analysis of the Internal Transcribed Spacer Regions

    PubMed Central

    Leaw, Shiang Ning; Chang, Hsien Chang; Sun, Hsiao Fang; Barton, Richard; Bouchara, Jean-Philippe; Chang, Tsung Chain

    2006-01-01

    Infections caused by yeasts have increased in previous decades due primarily to the increasing population of immunocompromised patients. In addition, infections caused by less common species such as Pichia, Rhodotorula, Trichosporon, and Saccharomyces spp. have been widely reported. This study extensively evaluated the feasibility of sequence analysis of the rRNA gene internal transcribed spacer (ITS) regions for the identification of yeasts of clinical relevance. Both the ITS1 and ITS2 regions of 373 strains (86 species), including 299 reference strains and 74 clinical isolates, were amplified by PCR and sequenced. The sequences were compared to reference data available at the GenBank database by using BLAST (basic local alignment search tool) to determine if species identification was possible by ITS sequencing. Since the GenBank database currently lacks ITS sequence entries for some yeasts, the ITS sequences of type (or reference) strains of 15 species were submitted to GenBank to facilitate identification of these species. Strains producing discrepant identifications between the conventional methods and ITS sequence analysis were further analyzed by sequencing of the D1-D2 domain of the large-subunit rRNA gene for species clarification. The rates of correct identification by ITS1 and ITS2 sequence analysis were 96.8% (361/373) and 99.7% (372/373), respectively. Of the 373 strains tested, only 1 strain (Rhodotorula glutinis BCRC 20576) could not be identified by ITS2 sequence analysis. In conclusion, identification of medically important yeasts by ITS sequencing, especially using the ITS2 region, is reliable and can be used as an accurate alternative to conventional identification methods. PMID:16517841

  5. Species Sorting of Benthic Invertebrates in a Salinity Gradient – Importance of Dispersal Limitation

    PubMed Central

    Josefson, Alf B.

    2016-01-01

    The relative importance of environment and dispersal related processes for community assembly has attracted great interest over recent decades, but few empirical studies from the marine/estuarine realm have examined the possible effects of these two types of factors in the same system. Importance of these processes was investigated in a hypothetical metacommunity of benthic invertebrates in 16 micro-tidal estuaries connected to the same open sea area. The estuaries differed in size and connectivity to the open sea and represented a salinity gradient across the estuaries. The Elements of Metacommunity Structure (EMS) approach on estuary scale was complemented with a mechanistic variance partitioning approach on sample scale to disentangle effects of factors affecting assembly of three trait groups of species with different dispersivity. A quasi-Clementsian pattern was observed for all three traits, a likely response to some latent gradient. The primary axis in the pattern was most strongly related to gradients in estuary salinity and estuary entrance width and correlation with richness indicated nestedness only in the matrix of the most dispersive trait group. In the variance partitioning approach measures of turnover and nestedness between paired samples each from different estuaries were related to environmental distance in different gradients. Distance between estuaries was unimportant suggesting importance of factors characterizing the estuaries. While the high dispersive species mainly were sorted in the salinity gradient, apparently according to their tolerance ranges towards salinity, the two less dispersive traits were additionally affected by estuary entrance width and possibly also area. The results exemplify a mechanism of community assembly in the marine realm where the niche factor salinity in conjunction with differential dispersal structure invertebrates in a metacommunity of connected estuaries, and support the idea that dispersive species are more

  6. Development of a PCR-based method for monitoring the status of Alcaligenes species in the agricultural environment.

    PubMed

    Nakano, Miyo; Niwa, Masumi; Nishimura, Norihiro

    2014-01-01

    To analyze the status of the genus Alcaligenes in the agricultural environment, we developed a PCR method for detection of these species from vegetables and farming soil. The selected PCR primers amplified a 107-bp fragment of the 16S rRNA gene in a specific PCR assay with a detection limit of 1.06 pg of pure culture DNA, corresponding to DNA extracted from approximately 23 cells of Alcaligenes faecalis. Meanwhile, PCR primers generated a detectable amount of the amplicon from 2.2×10(2) CFU/ml cell suspensions from the soil. Analysis of vegetable phylloepiphytic and farming soil microbes showed that bacterial species belonging to the genus Alcaligenes were present in the range from 0.9×10(0) CFU per gram (or cm(2)) (Japanese radish: Raphanus sativus var. longipinnatus) to more than 1.1×10(4) CFU/g (broccoli flowers: Brassica oleracea var. italic), while 2.4×10(2) to 4.4×10(3) CFU/g were detected from all soil samples. These results indicated that Alcaligenes species are present in the phytosphere at levels 10-1000 times lower than those in soil. Our approach may be useful for tracking or quantifying species of the genus Alcaligenes in the agricultural environment.

  7. Plastid genomics in horticultural species: importance and applications for plant population genetics, evolution, and biotechnology.

    PubMed

    Rogalski, Marcelo; do Nascimento Vieira, Leila; Fraga, Hugo P; Guerra, Miguel P

    2015-01-01

    During the evolution of the eukaryotic cell, plastids, and mitochondria arose from an endosymbiotic process, which determined the presence of three genetic compartments into the incipient plant cell. After that, these three genetic materials from host and symbiont suffered several rearrangements, bringing on a complex interaction between nuclear and organellar gene products. Nowadays, plastids harbor a small genome with ∼130 genes in a 100-220 kb sequence in higher plants. Plastid genes are mostly highly conserved between plant species, being useful for phylogenetic analysis in higher taxa. However, intergenic spacers have a relatively higher mutation rate and are important markers to phylogeographical and plant population genetics analyses. The predominant uniparental inheritance of plastids is like a highly desirable feature for phylogeny studies. Moreover, the gene content and genome rearrangements are efficient tools to capture and understand evolutionary events between different plant species. Currently, genetic engineering of the plastid genome (plastome) offers a number of attractive advantages as high-level of foreign protein expression, marker gene excision, gene expression in operon and transgene containment because of maternal inheritance of plastid genome in most crops. Therefore, plastid genome can be used for adding new characteristics related to synthesis of metabolic compounds, biopharmaceutical, and tolerance to biotic and abiotic stresses. Here, we describe the importance and applications of plastid genome as tools for genetic and evolutionary studies, and plastid transformation focusing on increasing the performance of horticultural species in the field.

  8. The importance of species sorting differs between habitat generalists and specialists in bacterial communities.

    PubMed

    Székely, Anna J; Langenheder, Silke

    2014-01-01

    Recent studies have shown that the spatial turnover of bacterial communities, that is, beta-diversity, is determined by a combination of different assembly mechanisms, such as species sorting, that is, environmental filtering, and dispersal-related mechanisms. However, it is currently unclear to what extent the importance of the different mechanisms depends on community traits. Here, we implemented a study using a rock pool metacommunity to test whether habitat specialization of bacterial taxa and groups or their phylogenetic identity influenced by which mechanisms communities were assembled. In general, our results show that species sorting was the most important assembly mechanism. However, we found that a larger fraction of the variation in bacterial community composition between pools could be explained by environmental factors in case of habitat generalists, that is, taxa that were widespread and abundant in the metacommunity, compared with habitat specialists, that is, taxa that had a more restricted distribution range and tended to be rare. Differences in assembly mechanisms were observed between different major phyla and classes. However, also here, a larger fraction of the variation in community composition among pools could be explained for taxonomic groups that contained on average more habitat generalists. In summary, our results show that species sorting is stronger for the most common taxa, indicating that beta-diversity along environmental gradients can be adequately described without considering rare taxa.

  9. Plastid genomics in horticultural species: importance and applications for plant population genetics, evolution, and biotechnology

    PubMed Central

    Rogalski, Marcelo; do Nascimento Vieira, Leila; Fraga, Hugo P.; Guerra, Miguel P.

    2015-01-01

    During the evolution of the eukaryotic cell, plastids, and mitochondria arose from an endosymbiotic process, which determined the presence of three genetic compartments into the incipient plant cell. After that, these three genetic materials from host and symbiont suffered several rearrangements, bringing on a complex interaction between nuclear and organellar gene products. Nowadays, plastids harbor a small genome with ∼130 genes in a 100–220 kb sequence in higher plants. Plastid genes are mostly highly conserved between plant species, being useful for phylogenetic analysis in higher taxa. However, intergenic spacers have a relatively higher mutation rate and are important markers to phylogeographical and plant population genetics analyses. The predominant uniparental inheritance of plastids is like a highly desirable feature for phylogeny studies. Moreover, the gene content and genome rearrangements are efficient tools to capture and understand evolutionary events between different plant species. Currently, genetic engineering of the plastid genome (plastome) offers a number of attractive advantages as high-level of foreign protein expression, marker gene excision, gene expression in operon and transgene containment because of maternal inheritance of plastid genome in most crops. Therefore, plastid genome can be used for adding new characteristics related to synthesis of metabolic compounds, biopharmaceutical, and tolerance to biotic and abiotic stresses. Here, we describe the importance and applications of plastid genome as tools for genetic and evolutionary studies, and plastid transformation focusing on increasing the performance of horticultural species in the field. PMID:26284102

  10. Influence of three aquatic macrophytes on mitigation of nitrogen species from agricultural runoff

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agricultural runoff containing nitrogen fertilizer is a major contributor to eutrophication in aquatic systems. One method of lowering amounts of nitrogen entering rivers or lakes is the transport of runoff through vegetated drainage ditches. Drainage ditch vegetation can enhance the mitigation of...

  11. Spectral Data Captures Important Variability Between and Among Species and Functional Types

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Townsend, P. A.; Serbin, S. P.; Kingdon, C.; Singh, A.; Couture, J. J.; Gamon, J. A.

    2013-12-01

    Narrowband spectral data in the visible, near and shortwave infrared (400-2500 nm) are being used increasingly in plant ecology to characterize the biochemical, physiological and water status of vegetation, as well as community composition. In particular, spectroscopic data have recently received considerable attention for their capacity to discriminate plants according to functional properties or 'optical types.' Such measurements can be acquired from airborne/satellite remote sensing imagery or field spectrometers and are commonly used to directly estimate or infer properties important to photosynthesis, carbon and water fluxes, nutrient dynamics, phenology, and disturbance. Spectral data therefore represent proxies for measurements that are otherwise time consuming or expensive to make, and - more importantly - provide the opportunity to characterize the spatial and temporal variability of taxonomic or functional groups. We have found that spectral variation within species and functional types can in fact exceed the variation between types. As such, we recommend that the traditional quantification of characteristics defining species and/or functional types must be modified to include the range of variability in those properties. We provide four examples of the importance of spectral data for describing within-species/functional type variation. First, within temperate forests, the spectral properties of foliage vary considerably with canopy position. This variability is strongly related to differences in specific leaf area between shade- and sun-lit leaves, and the resulting differences among leaves in strategies for light harvesting, photosynthesis, and leaf longevity. These results point to the need to better characterize leaf optical properties throughout a canopy, rather than basing the characterization of ecosystem functioning on only the sunlit portion of the canopy crown. Second, we show considerable differences in optical properties of foliage from

  12. Robust detection of rare species using environmental DNA: the importance of primer specificity.

    PubMed

    Wilcox, Taylor M; McKelvey, Kevin S; Young, Michael K; Jane, Stephen F; Lowe, Winsor H; Whiteley, Andrew R; Schwartz, Michael K

    2013-01-01

    Environmental DNA (eDNA) is being rapidly adopted as a tool to detect rare animals. Quantitative PCR (qPCR) using probe-based chemistries may represent a particularly powerful tool because of the method's sensitivity, specificity, and potential to quantify target DNA. However, there has been little work understanding the performance of these assays in the presence of closely related, sympatric taxa. If related species cause any cross-amplification or interference, false positives and negatives may be generated. These errors can be disastrous if false positives lead to overestimate the abundance of an endangered species or if false negatives prevent detection of an invasive species. In this study we test factors that influence the specificity and sensitivity of TaqMan MGB assays using co-occurring, closely related brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) and bull trout (S. confluentus) as a case study. We found qPCR to be substantially more sensitive than traditional PCR, with a high probability of detection at concentrations as low as 0.5 target copies/µl. We also found that number and placement of base pair mismatches between the Taqman MGB assay and non-target templates was important to target specificity, and that specificity was most influenced by base pair mismatches in the primers, rather than in the probe. We found that insufficient specificity can result in both false positive and false negative results, particularly in the presence of abundant related species. Our results highlight the utility of qPCR as a highly sensitive eDNA tool, and underscore the importance of careful assay design.

  13. Robust Detection of Rare Species Using Environmental DNA: The Importance of Primer Specificity

    PubMed Central

    Wilcox, Taylor M.; McKelvey, Kevin S.; Young, Michael K.; Jane, Stephen F.; Lowe, Winsor H.; Whiteley, Andrew R.; Schwartz, Michael K.

    2013-01-01

    Environmental DNA (eDNA) is being rapidly adopted as a tool to detect rare animals. Quantitative PCR (qPCR) using probe-based chemistries may represent a particularly powerful tool because of the method’s sensitivity, specificity, and potential to quantify target DNA. However, there has been little work understanding the performance of these assays in the presence of closely related, sympatric taxa. If related species cause any cross-amplification or interference, false positives and negatives may be generated. These errors can be disastrous if false positives lead to overestimate the abundance of an endangered species or if false negatives prevent detection of an invasive species. In this study we test factors that influence the specificity and sensitivity of TaqMan MGB assays using co-occurring, closely related brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) and bull trout (S. confluentus) as a case study. We found qPCR to be substantially more sensitive than traditional PCR, with a high probability of detection at concentrations as low as 0.5 target copies/µl. We also found that number and placement of base pair mismatches between the Taqman MGB assay and non-target templates was important to target specificity, and that specificity was most influenced by base pair mismatches in the primers, rather than in the probe. We found that insufficient specificity can result in both false positive and false negative results, particularly in the presence of abundant related species. Our results highlight the utility of qPCR as a highly sensitive eDNA tool, and underscore the importance of careful assay design. PMID:23555689

  14. Salt effects on functional traits in model and in economically important Lotus species.

    PubMed

    Uchiya, P; Escaray, F J; Bilenca, D; Pieckenstain, F; Ruiz, O A; Menéndez, A B

    2016-07-01

    A common stress on plants is NaCl-derived soil salinity. Genus Lotus comprises model and economically important species, which have been studied regarding physiological responses to salinity. Leaf area ratio (LAR), root length ratio (RLR) and their components, specific leaf area (SLA) and leaf mass fraction (LMF) and specific root length (SRL) and root mass fraction (RMF) might be affected by high soil salinity. We characterised L. tenuis, L. corniculatus, L. filicaulis, L. creticus, L. burtii and L. japonicus grown under different salt concentrations (0, 50, 100 and 150 mm NaCl) on the basis of SLA, LMF, SRL and RMF using PCA. We also assessed effects of different salt concentrations on LAR and RLR in each species, and explored whether changes in these traits provide fitness benefit. Salinity (150 mm NaCl) increased LAR in L. burtii and L. corniculatus, but not in the remaining species. The highest salt concentration caused a decrease of RLR in L. japonicus Gifu, but not in the remaining species. Changes in LAR and RLR would not be adaptive, according to adaptiveness analysis, with the exception of SLA changes in L. corniculatus. PCA revealed that under favourable conditions plants optimise surfaces for light and nutrient acquisition (SLA and SRL), whereas at higher salt concentrations they favour carbon allocation to leaves and roots (LMF and RMF) in detriment to their surfaces. PCA also showed that L. creticus subjected to saline treatment was distinguished from the remaining Lotus species. We suggest that augmented carbon partitioning to leaves and roots could constitute a salt-alleviating mechanism through toxic ion dilution.

  15. Characteristics of Imported Malaria and Species of Plasmodium Involved in Shandong Province, China (2012-2014)

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Chao; Wei, Qing-Kuan; Li, Jin; Xiao, Ting; Yin, Kun; Zhao, Chang-Lei; Wang, Yong-Bin; Kong, Xiang-Li; Zhao, Gui-Hua; Sun, Hui; Liu, Xin; Huang, Bing-Cheng

    2016-01-01

    Malaria remains a serious public health problem in Shandong Province, China; therefore, it is important to explore the characteristics of the current malaria prevalence situation in the province. In this study, data of malaria cases reported in Shandong during 2012-2014 were analyzed, and Plasmodium species were confirmed by smear microscopy and nested-PCR. A total of 374 malaria cases were reported, 80.8% of which were reported from 6 prefectures. Of all cases, P. falciparum was dominant (81.3%), followed by P. vivax (11.8%); P. ovale and P. malariae together accounted for 6.4% of cases. Notably, for the first time since 2012, no indigenous case had been reported in Shandong Province, a situation that continued through 2014. Total 95.2% of cases were imported from Africa. The ratio of male/female was 92.5:1, and 96.8% of cases occurred in people 20-54 years of age. Farmers or laborers represented 77.5% of cases. No significant trends of monthly pattern were found in the reported cases. All patients were in good condition after treatment, except for 3 who died. These results indicate that imported malaria has increased significantly since 2012 in Shandong Province, especially for P. falciparum, and there is an emergence of species diversity. PMID:27658591

  16. Characteristics of Imported Malaria and Species of Plasmodium Involved in Shandong Province, China (2012-2014).

    PubMed

    Xu, Chao; Wei, Qing-Kuan; Li, Jin; Xiao, Ting; Yin, Kun; Zhao, Chang-Lei; Wang, Yong-Bin; Kong, Xiang-Li; Zhao, Gui-Hua; Sun, Hui; Liu, Xin; Huang, Bing-Cheng

    2016-08-01

    Malaria remains a serious public health problem in Shandong Province, China; therefore, it is important to explore the characteristics of the current malaria prevalence situation in the province. In this study, data of malaria cases reported in Shandong during 2012-2014 were analyzed, and Plasmodium species were confirmed by smear microscopy and nested-PCR. A total of 374 malaria cases were reported, 80.8% of which were reported from 6 prefectures. Of all cases, P. falciparum was dominant (81.3%), followed by P. vivax (11.8%); P. ovale and P. malariae together accounted for 6.4% of cases. Notably, for the first time since 2012, no indigenous case had been reported in Shandong Province, a situation that continued through 2014. Total 95.2% of cases were imported from Africa. The ratio of male/female was 92.5:1, and 96.8% of cases occurred in people 20-54 years of age. Farmers or laborers represented 77.5% of cases. No significant trends of monthly pattern were found in the reported cases. All patients were in good condition after treatment, except for 3 who died. These results indicate that imported malaria has increased significantly since 2012 in Shandong Province, especially for P. falciparum, and there is an emergence of species diversity.

  17. Observations on morphology of immature Lucilia porphyrina (Diptera: Calliphoridae), a fly species of forensic importance.

    PubMed

    Klong-Klaew, Tunwadee; Sukontason, Kom; Sribanditmongkol, Pongruk; Moophayak, Kittikhun; Sanit, Sangob; Sukontason, Kabkaew L

    2012-11-01

    Lucilia porphyrina (Walker) is a blow fly of forensic importance, and shares its geographical distribution with a related forensically important species, Lucilia cuprina (Wiedemann). The immature stages of both species are similar in general appearance; therefore, correct identification should be given special consideration. This study highlighted the main features of L. porphyrina larvae, as observed under light microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. Particular attention is given to the anterior and posterior spiracles, cephalopharyngeal skeleton, and characteristics of the dorsal spines between the prothorax and mesothorax. In the third instar specifically, morphological information on L. porphyrina showed several features that are shared by L. cuprina, and therefore need certain identification to distinguish between them. Such key features are (1) greater posterior spiracle, (2) apparent inner projection between the middle and lower slits of the posterior spiracle, and (3) strongly sclerotized peritreme. The number of papillae on the anterior spiracle may be a supplement, five to nine and three to six in L. porphyrina and L. cuprina, respectively. The key for identifying third instar of forensically important flies in Thailand has been updated to include L. porphyrina.

  18. Marine fronts are important fishing areas for demersal species at the Argentine Sea (Southwest Atlantic Ocean)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alemany, Daniela; Acha, Eduardo M.; Iribarne, Oscar O.

    2014-03-01

    The high primary and secondary production associated with frontal systems attract a diversity of organisms due to high prey availability; this is why a strong relationship between fronts and pelagic fisheries has been shown worldwide. In the Argentine Sea, demersal resources are the most important, both in economical and in ecological sense; so we hypothesize that fronts are also preferred fishing areas for demersal resources. We evaluated the relationship between spatial distribution of fishing effort and oceanographic fronts, analyzing three of the most important frontal systems located in the Argentine Sea: the shelf-break front, the southern Patagonia front and the mid-shelf front. Individual vessel satellite monitoring system data (VMS; grouped by fleet type: ice-trawlers, freezer-trawlers and jigging fleet) were studied and fishing events were identified. Fishing events per area were used as a proxy of fishing effort and its spatial distribution by fleet type was visualized and analyzed with Geographic Information Systems. Oceanographic fronts were defined using polygons based on satellite chlorophyll amplitude values, and the percentage of fishing events within each polygon was calculated. Results showed a positive association between fronts and fishing activities of the different fleets, which suggests the aggregation of target species in these zones. The coupling of the freezer-trawler and jigging fleets (that operate on lower trophic level species; Macruronus magellanicus and Illex argentinus respectively) with fronts was higher than the ice-trawler fleet, targeting species of higher trophic level (Merluccius hubbsi). Marine fronts represent important fishing areas, even for demersal resources, as the distribution of fishing fleets and fishing effort are positively associated with frontal zones.

  19. The importance of rare species: a trait-based assessment of rare species contributions to functional diversity and possible ecosystem function in tall-grass prairies

    PubMed Central

    Jain, Meha; Flynn, Dan FB; Prager, Case M; Hart, Georgia M; DeVan, Caroline M; Ahrestani, Farshid S; Palmer, Matthew I; Bunker, Daniel E; Knops, Johannes MH; Jouseau, Claire F; Naeem, Shahid

    2014-01-01

    The majority of species in ecosystems are rare, but the ecosystem consequences of losing rare species are poorly known. To understand how rare species may influence ecosystem functioning, this study quantifies the contribution of species based on their relative level of rarity to community functional diversity using a trait-based approach. Given that rarity can be defined in several different ways, we use four different definitions of rarity: abundance (mean and maximum), geographic range, and habitat specificity. We find that rarer species contribute to functional diversity when rarity is defined by maximum abundance, geographic range, and habitat specificity. However, rarer species are functionally redundant when rarity is defined by mean abundance. Furthermore, when using abundance-weighted analyses, we find that rare species typically contribute significantly less to functional diversity than common species due to their low abundances. These results suggest that rare species have the potential to play an important role in ecosystem functioning, either by offering novel contributions to functional diversity or via functional redundancy depending on how rare species are defined. Yet, these contributions are likely to be greatest if the abundance of rare species increases due to environmental change. We argue that given the paucity of data on rare species, understanding the contribution of rare species to community functional diversity is an important first step to understanding the potential role of rare species in ecosystem functioning. PMID:24455165

  20. The importance of rare species: a trait-based assessment of rare species contributions to functional diversity and possible ecosystem function in tall-grass prairies.

    PubMed

    Jain, Meha; Flynn, Dan Fb; Prager, Case M; Hart, Georgia M; Devan, Caroline M; Ahrestani, Farshid S; Palmer, Matthew I; Bunker, Daniel E; Knops, Johannes Mh; Jouseau, Claire F; Naeem, Shahid

    2014-01-01

    The majority of species in ecosystems are rare, but the ecosystem consequences of losing rare species are poorly known. To understand how rare species may influence ecosystem functioning, this study quantifies the contribution of species based on their relative level of rarity to community functional diversity using a trait-based approach. Given that rarity can be defined in several different ways, we use four different definitions of rarity: abundance (mean and maximum), geographic range, and habitat specificity. We find that rarer species contribute to functional diversity when rarity is defined by maximum abundance, geographic range, and habitat specificity. However, rarer species are functionally redundant when rarity is defined by mean abundance. Furthermore, when using abundance-weighted analyses, we find that rare species typically contribute significantly less to functional diversity than common species due to their low abundances. These results suggest that rare species have the potential to play an important role in ecosystem functioning, either by offering novel contributions to functional diversity or via functional redundancy depending on how rare species are defined. Yet, these contributions are likely to be greatest if the abundance of rare species increases due to environmental change. We argue that given the paucity of data on rare species, understanding the contribution of rare species to community functional diversity is an important first step to understanding the potential role of rare species in ecosystem functioning.

  1. Establishment of the cytoplasmic incompatibility-inducing Wolbachia strain wMel in an important agricultural pest insect

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Xiao-Fei; Li, Zheng-Xi

    2016-01-01

    The wMel Wolbachia strain was known for cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI)-induction and blocking the transmission of dengue. However, it is unknown whether it can establish and induce CI in a non-dipteran host insect. Here we artificially transferred wMel from Drosophila melanogaster into the whitefly Bemisia tabaci. Fluorescence in situ hybridisation demonstrated that wMel had successfully transfected the new host. Reciprocal crossing was conducted with wMel-transfected and wild-type isofemale lines, indicating that wMel could induce a strong CI without imposing significant cost on host fecundity. We then determined the maternal transmission efficiency of wMel in the offspring generations, showing a fluctuating trend over a period of 12 generations. We thus detected the titre of wMel during different developmental stages and in different generations by using real-time quantitative PCR, revealing a similar fluctuating mode, but it was not significantly correlated with the dynamics of transmission efficiency. These results suggest that wMel can be established in B.tabaci, a distantly related pest insect of agricultural importance; moreover, it can induce a strong CI phenotype in the recipient host insect, suggesting a potential for its use in biological control of B. tabaci. PMID:27982076

  2. Agronomically important thrips: development of species-specific primers in multiplex PCR and microarray assay using internal transcribed spacer 1 (ITS1) sequences for identification.

    PubMed

    Yeh, W B; Tseng, M J; Chang, N T; Wu, S Y; Tsai, Y S

    2015-02-01

    Thrips, the sole vector of plant Tospovirus, are major pests of many agricultural crops throughout the world. Molecular approaches have been applied in recent decades to identify these minute and morphologically difficult to distinguish insects. In this study, sequences of internal transcribed spacer 1 (ITS1) region of 15 agronomically important thrips, including several virus transmission species, have been analyzed in order to design species-specific primers for multiplex PCR and probes for microarray assay. That the ITS1 sequence distances within species were smaller than those among species suggests that the ITS1 fragment can be used for thrips species identification. The specificity and stability of these primers, combined with universal paired primers, were tested and verified in multiplex PCR. Using these specific primers as probes, microarray assay showed that PCR products of all thrips species hybridized consistently to their corresponding probes, though some signals were weak. We have demonstrated that multiplex PCR using specific primers based on ITS1 sequences is a simple, reliable, and cost-effective diagnostic tool for thrips species identification. Moreover, the DNA microarray assay is expected to extend into a reliable high-throughput screening tool for the vast numbers of thrips.

  3. Phylogeny of economically important insect pests that infesting several crops species in Malaysia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghazali, Siti Zafirah; Zain, Badrul Munir Md.; Yaakop, Salmah

    2014-09-01

    This paper reported molecular data on insect pests of commercial crops in Peninsular Malaysia. Fifteen insect pests (Metisa plana, Calliteara horsefeldii, Cotesia vestalis, Bactrocera papayae, Bactrocera carambolae, Bactrocera latifrons, Conopomorpha cramella, Sesamia inferens, Chilo polychrysa, Rhynchophorus vulneratus, and Rhynchophorus ferrugineus) of nine crops were sampled (oil palm, coconut, paddy, cocoa, starfruit, angled loofah, guava, chili and mustard) and also four species that belong to the fern's pest (Herpetogramma platycapna) and storage and rice pests (Tribolium castaneum, Oryzaephilus surinamensis and Cadra cautella). The presented phylogeny summarized the initial phylogenetic hypothesis, which concerning by implementation of the economically important insect pests. In this paper, phylogenetic relationships among 39 individuals of 15 species that belonging to three orders under 12 genera were inferred from DNA sequences of mitochondrial marker, cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI) and nuclear marker, ribosomal DNA 28S D2 region. The phylogenies resulted from the phylogenetic analyses of both genes are relatively similar, but differ in the sequence of evolution. Interestingly, this most recent molecular data of COI sequences data by using Bayesian Inference analysis resulted a more-resolved phylogeny that corroborated with traditional hypotheses of holometabolan relationships based on traditional hypotheses of holometabolan relationships and most of recently molecular study compared to 28S sequences. This finding provides the information on relationships of pests species, which infested several crops in Malaysia and also estimation on Holometabola's order relationships. The identification of the larval stages of insect pests could be done accurately, without waiting the emergence of adults and supported by the phylogenetic tree.

  4. CHROMagar Candida, a new differential isolation medium for presumptive identification of clinically important Candida species.

    PubMed Central

    Odds, F C; Bernaerts, R

    1994-01-01

    CHROMagar Candida is a novel, differential culture medium that is claimed to facilitate the isolation and presumptive identification of some clinically important yeast species. We evaluated the use of this medium with 726 yeast isolates, including 82 isolated directly on the medium from clinical material. After 2 days of incubation at 37 degrees C, 285 C. albicans isolates gave distinctive green colonies that were not seen with any of 441 other yeast isolates representing 21 different species. A total of 54 C. tropicalis isolates also developed distinctive dark blue-gray colonies with a halo of dark brownish purple in the surrounding agar. C. krusei isolates (n = 43) also formed highly characteristic rough, spreading colonies with pale pink centers and a white edge that was otherwise encountered only rarely with isolates of C. norvegensis. Trichosporon spp. (n = 34) formed small, pale colonies that became larger and characteristically rough with prolonged incubation. Most of the other 310 yeasts studied formed colonies with a color that ranged from white to pink to purple with a brownish tint. The only exceptions were found among isolates identified as Geotrichum sp. or Pichia sp., some of which formed colonies with a gray to blue color and which in two instances formed a green pigment or a dark halo in the agar. The specificity and sensitivity of the new medium for the presumptive identification of C. albicans, C. krusei, and C. tropicalis exceeded 99% for all three species. A blinded reading test involving four personnel and 57 yeast isolates representing nine clinically important species confirmed that colonial appearance after 48 h of incubation on CHROMagar Candida afforded the correct presumptive recognition of C. albicans, C. tropicalis, C, krusei, and Trichosporon spp. None of nine bacterial isolates grew on CHROMagar Candida within 72 h, and bacteria (Escherichia coli) grew from only 4 of 104 vaginal, 100 oral, and 99 anorectal swabs. The new medium

  5. Utilization of peatlands as possible land resource for low-input agriculture: cultivation of Vaccinium species as an example

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tonutare, Tonu; Rodima, Ako; Rannik, Kaire; Shanskiy, Merrit

    2013-04-01

    The best way of soil protection is its sustainable and expedient use, which secures soils ecological functioning. Recent years, by exploitation of peat soils for their different use, has raised important issues concerning their input to global climate change as important source of greenhouse gases (GHG) emitters. The dynamics of GHG are determined by different factors as: site specific conditions including hydrology, soil type, vegetation, area management, including meteorological and climatic conditions. Therefore, in this current paper we are presenting the study results were we estimated CO2, CH4 and N2O emissions from exhausted cultivated peatland with Vaccinium species and determined the soil chemical composition. For comparision a virgin state peatland was observed. The main goals of the paper are: (1) to present the experimental results of greenhouse gases generation and peat chemical composition (antioxidant activity of peat, C/N ratio, fiber content, water extractable phenolics) relationships on different microsites either on natural plant cover or Vaccinium species cultivation area on exhausted milled peat area; (2) to discuss how peat soil quality contributes to greenhouse gases emission; (3) and what kind of relationship reveals between low input agricultural system in which Vaccinium species are cultivated on exhausted milled peat area. The study are is located in nearby Ilmatsalu (58°23'N, 26°31'E) in South Estonia, inside of which the three microsites are determined. Microsites are different from each other by exploitation and plant cover type. 1). Natural plant cover, 2). Cultivated area with Vaccinium angustifolium x V. corymbosum, 3). Cultivated area with Vaccinium angustifolium. The determined soil type according to WRB was Fibri Dystric Histosol. The main part of study focuses on the analyses of greenhouse gases. For this purpose the closed chamber method was used. The greenhouse gas samples were collected from spring to autumn 2011 throughout

  6. Climate impacts on European agriculture and water management in the context of adaptation and mitigation--the importance of an integrated approach.

    PubMed

    Falloon, Pete; Betts, Richard

    2010-11-01

    We review and qualitatively assess the importance of interactions and feedbacks in assessing climate change impacts on water and agriculture in Europe. We focus particularly on the impact of future hydrological changes on agricultural greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation and adaptation options. Future projected trends in European agriculture include northward movement of crop suitability zones and increasing crop productivity in Northern Europe, but declining productivity and suitability in Southern Europe. This may be accompanied by a widening of water resource differences between the North and South, and an increase in extreme rainfall events and droughts. Changes in future hydrology and water management practices will influence agricultural adaptation measures and alter the effectiveness of agricultural mitigation strategies. These interactions are often highly complex and influenced by a number of factors which are themselves influenced by climate. Mainly positive impacts may be anticipated for Northern Europe, where agricultural adaptation may be shaped by reduced vulnerability of production, increased water supply and reduced water demand. However, increasing flood hazards may present challenges for agriculture, and summer irrigation shortages may result from earlier spring runoff peaks in some regions. Conversely, the need for effective adaptation will be greatest in Southern Europe as a result of increased production vulnerability, reduced water supply and increased demands for irrigation. Increasing flood and drought risks will further contribute to the need for robust management practices. The impacts of future hydrological changes on agricultural mitigation in Europe will depend on the balance between changes in productivity and rates of decomposition and GHG emission, both of which depend on climatic, land and management factors. Small increases in European soil organic carbon (SOC) stocks per unit land area are anticipated considering changes in climate

  7. Agriculture: Newsroom

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Agriculture Newsroom. News releases, reports, and other documents from around EPA that are of interest or direct importance to the environmental management or compliance efforts of the agricultural community.

  8. Effects of environmental temperature on oviposition behavior in three blow fly species of forensic importance.

    PubMed

    Ody, Helen; Bulling, Mark T; Barnes, Kate M

    2017-03-14

    A number of factors are known to affect blow fly behavior with respect to oviposition. Current research indicates that temperature is the most significant factor. However temperature thresholds for oviposition in forensically important blow flies have not been well studied. Here, the oviposition behavior of three species of forensically important blow fly species (Calliphora vicina, Calliphora vomitoria and Lucilia sericata,) was studied under controlled laboratory conditions over a range of temperatures (10-40°C). Lower temperature thresholds for oviposition of 16°C and 17.5°C were established for C. vomitoria and L. sericata respectively, whilst C. vicina continued to lay eggs at 10°C. C. vomitoria and L. sericata both continued to lay eggs at 40°C, whilst the highest temperature at which oviposition occurred in C. vicina was 35°C. Within these thresholds there was considerable variation in the number of surviving pupae, with a general pattern of a single peak within the range of temperatures at which eggs were laid, but with the pattern being much less distinct for L. sericata.

  9. Vulnerability assessment of New Jersey's food supply to invasive species: the New Jersey IMPORT project.

    PubMed

    Gregory, Petros; Hamilton, George; Borjan, Marija; Robson, Mark

    2006-01-01

    The United States' environment and economy have been severely impacted by unintentionally introduced biological organisms for the last 100 years. Our ecosystems and biological reserves of conservation importance are regularly invaded by non-indigenous species. To help prevent future invaders from entering the ports, this project undertaken at the Port of Elizabeth proposed to: 1. Catalog the different vegetable and fruit crops entering this country; 2. Evaluate the potential risk to New Jersey crops that an introduced exotic pest might pose; and 3. Evaluate the potential that imported crops entering the U.S. have for harboring exotic pests. The New Jersey IMPORT report, or Invasive Management Promoting Open and Responsible Trade project, details a newly designed ecological risk assessment tool to evaluate entry potential of invasive pests at the Port of Elizabeth. Risk designations were assigned to shipments of four fruits; seven vegetables; and two field/forage crops based on: i) Country of origin; ii) Amounts of commodities imported; and iii) Endemic pests present in exporting countries. Between 5,000 and 180,000 tons of crops were imported into the Port of Elizabeth from October 2001 to 2003. Pest risk analyses were drafted for twenty-five intercepted insects taken from the Port Information Network. In addition, eighteen pest risk analyses were drafted for invasive fungi, bacteria, and viruses of global concern as alerted by ProMed Digest. It was concluded that three crops imported remain at high risk: apples, peppers, and tomatoes. Peaches, soybeans, lettuce, sweet corn, potatoes, squash, and eggplant imported were considered moderate risk. Blueberries, cranberries, and alfalfa were considered low risk.

  10. Evaluating Functional Diversity: Missing Trait Data and the Importance of Species Abundance Structure and Data Transformation

    PubMed Central

    Bryndová, Michala; Kasari, Liis; Norberg, Anna; Weiss, Matthias; Bishop, Tom R.; Luke, Sarah H.; Sam, Katerina; Le Bagousse-Pinguet, Yoann; Lepš, Jan; Götzenberger, Lars; de Bello, Francesco

    2016-01-01

    Functional diversity (FD) is an important component of biodiversity that quantifies the difference in functional traits between organisms. However, FD studies are often limited by the availability of trait data and FD indices are sensitive to data gaps. The distribution of species abundance and trait data, and its transformation, may further affect the accuracy of indices when data is incomplete. Using an existing approach, we simulated the effects of missing trait data by gradually removing data from a plant, an ant and a bird community dataset (12, 59, and 8 plots containing 62, 297 and 238 species respectively). We ranked plots by FD values calculated from full datasets and then from our increasingly incomplete datasets and compared the ranking between the original and virtually reduced datasets to assess the accuracy of FD indices when used on datasets with increasingly missing data. Finally, we tested the accuracy of FD indices with and without data transformation, and the effect of missing trait data per plot or per the whole pool of species. FD indices became less accurate as the amount of missing data increased, with the loss of accuracy depending on the index. But, where transformation improved the normality of the trait data, FD values from incomplete datasets were more accurate than before transformation. The distribution of data and its transformation are therefore as important as data completeness and can even mitigate the effect of missing data. Since the effect of missing trait values pool-wise or plot-wise depends on the data distribution, the method should be decided case by case. Data distribution and data transformation should be given more careful consideration when designing, analysing and interpreting FD studies, especially where trait data are missing. To this end, we provide the R package “traitor” to facilitate assessments of missing trait data. PMID:26881747

  11. Evaluating Functional Diversity: Missing Trait Data and the Importance of Species Abundance Structure and Data Transformation.

    PubMed

    Májeková, Maria; Paal, Taavi; Plowman, Nichola S; Bryndová, Michala; Kasari, Liis; Norberg, Anna; Weiss, Matthias; Bishop, Tom R; Luke, Sarah H; Sam, Katerina; Le Bagousse-Pinguet, Yoann; Lepš, Jan; Götzenberger, Lars; de Bello, Francesco

    2016-01-01

    Functional diversity (FD) is an important component of biodiversity that quantifies the difference in functional traits between organisms. However, FD studies are often limited by the availability of trait data and FD indices are sensitive to data gaps. The distribution of species abundance and trait data, and its transformation, may further affect the accuracy of indices when data is incomplete. Using an existing approach, we simulated the effects of missing trait data by gradually removing data from a plant, an ant and a bird community dataset (12, 59, and 8 plots containing 62, 297 and 238 species respectively). We ranked plots by FD values calculated from full datasets and then from our increasingly incomplete datasets and compared the ranking between the original and virtually reduced datasets to assess the accuracy of FD indices when used on datasets with increasingly missing data. Finally, we tested the accuracy of FD indices with and without data transformation, and the effect of missing trait data per plot or per the whole pool of species. FD indices became less accurate as the amount of missing data increased, with the loss of accuracy depending on the index. But, where transformation improved the normality of the trait data, FD values from incomplete datasets were more accurate than before transformation. The distribution of data and its transformation are therefore as important as data completeness and can even mitigate the effect of missing data. Since the effect of missing trait values pool-wise or plot-wise depends on the data distribution, the method should be decided case by case. Data distribution and data transformation should be given more careful consideration when designing, analysing and interpreting FD studies, especially where trait data are missing. To this end, we provide the R package "traitor" to facilitate assessments of missing trait data.

  12. Using species sensitivity distribution approach to assess the risks of commonly detected agricultural pesticides to Australia's tropical freshwater ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Pathiratne, Asoka; Kroon, Frederieke J

    2016-02-01

    To assess the potential impacts of agricultural pesticides on tropical freshwater ecosystems, the present study developed temperature-specific, freshwater species protection concentrations (i.e., ecotoxicity threshold values) for 8 pesticides commonly detected in Australia's tropical freshwaters. Because relevant toxicity data for native tropical freshwater species to assess the ecological risks were mostly absent, scientifically robust toxicity data obtained at ≥20 °C were used for ecologically relevant taxonomic groups representing primary producers and consumers. Species sensitivity distribution (SSD) curves were subsequently generated for predicted chronic exposure using Burrlioz 2.0 software with mixed chronic and converted acute data relevant to exposure conditions at ≥20 °C. Ecotoxicity threshold values for tropical freshwater ecosystem protection were generated for ametryn, atrazine, diuron, metolachlor, and imidacloprid (all moderate reliability), as well as simazine, hexazinone, and tebuthiuron (all low reliability). Using these SSD curves, the retrospective risk assessments for recently reported pesticide concentrations highlight that the herbicides ametryn, atrazine, and diuron are of major concern for ecological health in Australia's tropical freshwater ecosystems. The insecticide imidacloprid also appears to pose an emerging threat to the most sensitive species in tropical freshwater ecosystems. The exposed temperature-specific approach may be applied to develop water quality guideline values for other environmental contaminants detected in tropical freshwater ecosystems until reliable and relevant toxicity data are generated using representative native species.

  13. 9 CFR 93.911 - Ports designated for the importation of live VHS-regulated fish species.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 1 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Ports designated for the importation of live VHS-regulated fish species. 93.911 Section 93.911 Animals and Animal Products ANIMAL AND... Animal Species General Provisions for Vhs-Regulated Fish Species § 93.911 Ports designated for...

  14. 9 CFR 93.911 - Ports designated for the importation of live VHS-regulated fish species.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 1 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Ports designated for the importation of live VHS-regulated fish species. 93.911 Section 93.911 Animals and Animal Products ANIMAL AND... Animal Species General Provisions for Vhs-Regulated Fish Species § 93.911 Ports designated for...

  15. 9 CFR 93.911 - Ports designated for the importation of live VHS-regulated fish species.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 9 Animals and Animal Products 1 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Ports designated for the importation of live VHS-regulated fish species. 93.911 Section 93.911 Animals and Animal Products ANIMAL AND... Animal Species General Provisions for Vhs-Regulated Fish Species § 93.911 Ports designated for...

  16. 9 CFR 93.911 - Ports designated for the importation of live VHS-regulated fish species.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... of live VHS-regulated fish species. 93.911 Section 93.911 Animals and Animal Products ANIMAL AND... (INCLUDING POULTRY) AND ANIMAL PRODUCTS IMPORTATION OF CERTAIN ANIMALS, BIRDS, FISH, AND POULTRY, AND CERTAIN... Animal Species General Provisions for Vhs-Regulated Fish Species § 93.911 Ports designated for...

  17. Is tree species diversity or tree species identity the most important driver of European forest soil carbon stocks?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vesterdal, Lars; Muhie Dawud, Seid; Raulund-Rasmussen, Karsten; Finér, Leena; Domisch, Timo

    2016-04-01

    Land management includes the selection of specific tree species and tree species mixtures for European forests. Studies of functional species diversity effects have reported positive effects for aboveground carbon (C) sequestration, but the question remains whether higher soil C stocks could also result from belowground niche differentiation including more efficient root exploitation of soils. We studied topsoil C stocks in tree species diversity gradients established within the FunDivEurope project to explore biodiversity-ecosystem functioning relationships in six European forest types in Finland, Poland, Germany, Romania, Spain and Italy. In the Polish forest type we extended the sampling to also include subsoils. We found consistent but modest effects of species diversity on total soil C stocks (forest floor and 0-20 cm) across the six European forest types. Carbon stocks in the forest floor alone and in the combined forest floor and mineral soil layers increased with increasing tree species diversity. In contrast, there was a strong effect of species identity (broadleaf vs. conifer) and its interaction with site-related factors. Within the Polish forest type we sampled soils down to 40 cm and found that species identity was again the main factor explaining total soil C stock. However, species diversity increased soil C stocks in deeper soil layers (20-40 cm), while species identity influenced C stocks significantly within forest floors and the 0-10 cm layer. Root biomass increased with diversity in 30-40 cm depth, and a positive relationship between C stocks and root biomass in the 30-40 cm layer suggested that belowground niche complementarity could be a driving mechanism for higher root carbon input and in turn a deeper distribution of C in diverse forests. We conclude that total C stocks are mainly driven by tree species identity. However, modest positive diversity effects were detected at the European scale, and stronger positive effects on subsoil C stocks

  18. Phylloepiphytic interaction between bacteria and different plant species in a tropical agricultural system.

    PubMed

    Baldotto, Lílian Estrela Borges; Olivares, Fábio Lopes

    2008-11-01

    Plant surfaces are a favourable niche for bacterial establishment, and hypothetically, plant species differ in their capacity to harbour epiphytic bacterial communities. This study was conducted to evaluate and describe the structural relationship of a bacterial community at the phyllosphere level with different plant species in a tropical ecosystem. Leaf blades of 47 plant species distributed in 27 botanical families were collected on a typical small Brazilian farm and prepared for observation under light and scanning electron microscopy. Naturally occurring bacteria were the most abundant settlers of the phylloplane, followed by fungal spore or hyphae. All plant species studied were colonized by phylloepiphytic bacteria, which were observed as solitary cells, microcolonies, and biofilms. However, independent of the family, the plant species differed in the pattern of phyllosphere colonization, as reflected in bacteria frequency and presence or absence of anatomical features that would favour the association. The phylloepiphytic bacteria were preferentially established on the following sites: epidermal cell wall junctions, glandular and nonglandular trichomes, veins, stomata, and epidermal cell wall surface. Profuse bacteria and fungi colonization was observed, at a level that was at least comparable with temperate regions. Interestingly, fungi seemed to alter the bacteria colonization pattern, most probably by microenvironmental modifications. The trichome type and density as well as the presence of epicuticular wax on the leaf blade surface seemed to be the most determinant anatomical features for the pattern of phyllosphere colonization. The presence of trichomes has a favourable, and epicuticular wax an unfavourable influence on the plant-bacteria interaction.

  19. Convergence and divergence in a long-term old-field succession: the importance of spatial scale and species abundance.

    PubMed

    Li, Shao-Peng; Cadotte, Marc W; Meiners, Scott J; Pu, Zhichao; Fukami, Tadashi; Jiang, Lin

    2016-09-01

    Whether plant communities in a given region converge towards a particular stable state during succession has long been debated, but rarely tested at a sufficiently long time scale. By analysing a 50-year continuous study of post-agricultural secondary succession in New Jersey, USA, we show that the extent of community convergence varies with the spatial scale and species abundance classes. At the larger field scale, abundance-based dissimilarities among communities decreased over time, indicating convergence of dominant species, whereas incidence-based dissimilarities showed little temporal tend, indicating no sign of convergence. In contrast, plots within each field diverged in both species composition and abundance. Abundance-based successional rates decreased over time, whereas rare species and herbaceous plants showed little change in temporal turnover rates. Initial abandonment conditions only influenced community structure early in succession. Overall, our findings provide strong evidence for scale and abundance dependence of stochastic and deterministic processes over old-field succession.

  20. The importance of incorporating functional habitats into conservation planning for highly mobile species in dynamic systems.

    PubMed

    Webb, Matthew H; Terauds, Aleks; Tulloch, Ayesha; Bell, Phil; Stojanovic, Dejan; Heinsohn, Robert

    2017-01-28

    The distribution of mobile species in dynamic systems can vary greatly over time and space. Estimating their population size and geographic range can be problematic, with serious implications for conservation assessments. Scarce data on mobile species and the resources they need can also limit the type of analytical approaches available to derive such estimates. Here we quantify dynamic change in availability and use of key ecological resources required for breeding (i.e. food and nesting sites) for a critically endangered nomadic habitat specialist, the swift parrot (Lathamus discolor). We compare estimates of occupied habitat (km(2) ) derived from dynamic presence-background data climatic models to those derived from dynamic occupancy models that include a direct measure of food availability. We also compare estimates that incorporate fine resolution information on key ecological resources (i.e functional habitats) into distribution maps with more common approaches that typically focus on broader climatic suitability. For all models, both the extent and spatial location of occupied areas varied dramatically over the study period. The occupancy models produced significantly smaller (up to an order of magnitude) and more spatially discrete estimates of occupied habitat than climate-based models. Estimates accounting for the area of functional habitats were also significantly smaller than estimates based only on occupied habitat. Importantly, an increase (or decrease) in one functional habitat did not necessarily correspond to changes in the other, with consequences for overall habitat functionality. We argue that these patterns are typical for mobile resource specialists, but currently go unnoticed due to limited data on (1) species' presence/absence and (2) availability of key resources. Understanding changes in the relative availability of functional habitats is crucial to informing conservation planning and accurately assessing extinction risk for mobile

  1. Intra- and inter-species interactions within biofilms of important foodborne bacterial pathogens

    PubMed Central

    Giaouris, Efstathios; Heir, Even; Desvaux, Mickaël; Hébraud, Michel; Møretrø, Trond; Langsrud, Solveig; Doulgeraki, Agapi; Nychas, George-John; Kačániová, Miroslava; Czaczyk, Katarzyna; Ölmez, Hülya; Simões, Manuel

    2015-01-01

    A community-based sessile life style is the normal mode of growth and survival for many bacterial species. Under such conditions, cell-to-cell interactions are inevitable and ultimately lead to the establishment of dense, complex and highly structured biofilm populations encapsulated in a self-produced extracellular matrix and capable of coordinated and collective behavior. Remarkably, in food processing environments, a variety of different bacteria may attach to surfaces, survive, grow, and form biofilms. Salmonella enterica, Listeria monocytogenes, Escherichia coli, and Staphylococcus aureus are important bacterial pathogens commonly implicated in outbreaks of foodborne diseases, while all are known to be able to create biofilms on both abiotic and biotic surfaces. Particularly challenging is the attempt to understand the complexity of inter-bacterial interactions that can be encountered in such unwanted consortia, such as competitive and cooperative ones, together with their impact on the final outcome of these communities (e.g., maturation, physiology, antimicrobial resistance, virulence, dispersal). In this review, up-to-date data on both the intra- and inter-species interactions encountered in biofilms of these pathogens are presented. A better understanding of these interactions, both at molecular and biophysical levels, could lead to novel intervention strategies for controlling pathogenic biofilm formation in food processing environments and thus improve food safety. PMID:26347727

  2. Secondary metabolites of Capsicum species and their importance in the human diet.

    PubMed

    Wahyuni, Yuni; Ballester, Ana-Rosa; Sudarmonowati, Enny; Bino, Raoul J; Bovy, Arnaud G

    2013-04-26

    The genus Capsicum (pepper) comprises a large number of wild and cultivated species. The plants are grown all over the world, primarily in tropical and subtropical countries. The fruits are an excellent source of health-related compounds, such as ascorbic acid (vitamin C), carotenoids (provitamin A), tocopherols (vitamin E), flavonoids, and capsaicinoids. Pepper fruits have been used for fresh and cooked consumption, as well as for medicinal purposes, such as treatment of asthma, coughs, sore throats, and toothache. Depending on its uses, there are several main characters important for product quality; pungency, bright attractive colors, highly concentrated extracts, and a small number of seeds are the main characters on which quality is based and priced. Herein, a general overview of biochemical composition, medical properties of these compounds, and characteristics of quality attributes of pepper fruits is presented.

  3. The ozone component of global change: potential effects on agricultural and horticultural plant yield, product quality and interactions with invasive species.

    PubMed

    Booker, Fitzgerald; Muntifering, Russell; McGrath, Margaret; Burkey, Kent; Decoteau, Dennis; Fiscus, Edwin; Manning, William; Krupa, Sagar; Chappelka, Arthur; Grantz, David

    2009-04-01

    The productivity, product quality and competitive ability of important agricultural and horticultural plants in many regions of the world may be adversely affected by current and anticipated concentrations of ground-level ozone (O3). Exposure to elevated O3 typically results in suppressed photosynthesis, accelerated senescence, decreased growth and lower yields. Various approaches used to evaluate O3 effects generally concur that current yield losses range from 5% to 15% among sensitive plants. There is, however, considerable genetic variability in plant responses to O3. To illustrate this, we show that ambient O3 concentrations in the eastern United States cause substantially different levels of damage to otherwise similar snap bean cultivars. Largely undesirable effects of O3 can also occur in seed and fruit chemistry as well as in forage nutritive value, with consequences for animal production. Ozone may alter herbicide efficacy and foster establishment of some invasive species. We conclude that current and projected levels of O3 in many regions worldwide are toxic to sensitive plants of agricultural and horticultural significance. Plant breeding that incorporates O3 sensitivity into selection strategies will be increasingly necessary to achieve sustainable production with changing atmospheric composition, while reductions in O3 precursor emissions will likely benefit world food production and reduce atmospheric concentrations of an important greenhouse gas.

  4. Isolation and characterization of novel phorate-degrading bacterial species from agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Jariyal, Monu; Gupta, V K; Mandal, Kousik; Jindal, Vikas; Banta, Geetika; Singh, Balwinder

    2014-02-01

    Based upon 16S rDNA sequence homology, 15 phorate-degrading bacteria isolated from sugarcane field soils by selective enrichment were identified to be different species of Bacillus, Pseudomonas, Brevibacterium, and Staphylococcus. Relative phorate degradation in a mineral salt medium containing phorate (50 μg ml(-1)) as sole carbon source established that all the bacterial species could actively degrade more than 97 % phorate during 21 days. Three of these species viz. Bacillus aerophilus strain IMBL 4.1, Brevibacterium frigoritolerans strain IMBL 2.1, and Pseudomonas fulva strain IMBL 5.1 were found to be most active phorate metabolizers, degrading more than 96 % phorate during 2 days and 100 % phorate during 13 days. Qualitative analysis of phorate residues by gas liquid chromatography revealed complete metabolization of phorate without detectable accumulation of any known phorate metabolites. Phorate degradation by these bacterial species did not follow the first-order kinetics except the P. fulva strain IMBL 5.1 with half-life period (t1/2) ranging between 0.40 and 5.47 days.

  5. Transcriptome sequencing in an ecologically important tree species: assembly, annotation, and marker discovery

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Massively parallel sequencing of cDNA is now an efficient route for generating enormous sequence collections that represent expressed genes. This approach provides a valuable starting point for characterizing functional genetic variation in non-model organisms, especially where whole genome sequencing efforts are currently cost and time prohibitive. The large and complex genomes of pines (Pinus spp.) have hindered the development of genomic resources, despite the ecological and economical importance of the group. While most genomic studies have focused on a single species (P. taeda), genomic level resources for other pines are insufficiently developed to facilitate ecological genomic research. Lodgepole pine (P. contorta) is an ecologically important foundation species of montane forest ecosystems and exhibits substantial adaptive variation across its range in western North America. Here we describe a sequencing study of expressed genes from P. contorta, including their assembly and annotation, and their potential for molecular marker development to support population and association genetic studies. Results We obtained 586,732 sequencing reads from a 454 GS XLR70 Titanium pyrosequencer (mean length: 306 base pairs). A combination of reference-based and de novo assemblies yielded 63,657 contigs, with 239,793 reads remaining as singletons. Based on sequence similarity with known proteins, these sequences represent approximately 17,000 unique genes, many of which are well covered by contig sequences. This sequence collection also included a surprisingly large number of retrotransposon sequences, suggesting that they are highly transcriptionally active in the tissues we sampled. We located and characterized thousands of simple sequence repeats and single nucleotide polymorphisms as potential molecular markers in our assembled and annotated sequences. High quality PCR primers were designed for a substantial number of the SSR loci, and a large number of these

  6. Occurrence and Intensity of Anisakid Nematode Larvae in Some Commercially Important Fish Species in Persian Gulf

    PubMed Central

    DADAR, Maryam; ALBORZI, Alireza; PEYGHAN, Rahim; ADEL, Milad

    2016-01-01

    Background: Anisakid nematodes are common parasites of fish, mammals, fish-eating birds, and reptiles with a worldwide distribution, causing diseases in human, fish and important economic losses. Methods: A preliminary epidemiological study was carried out on Anisakid nematodes larvae in some commercially important fish species to evaluate the anisakid nematode larvae from greater lizardfish, (Saurida tumbil), Japanese thread fin bream (Nemipterus japonicus), crocodile longtom (Tylosurus crocodilus crocodiles) and longfin trevally (Carangoides armatus) from the Persian Gulf of Iran. Results: The collected larvae were identified mainly as the third larval stage (L3) of Hysterothylacium larval type A, B and C, Anisakis sp., Raphidascaris sp., Pseudoterranova sp. and Philometra sp. (Nematoda: Philometridae). The prevalence of Anisakid larvae infection of examined fishes was 97.2% in N. japonicus, 90.3% in S. tumbil, 20.5% in crocodile longtom and 5.5% in longfin trevally. Anisakis type III for the first time was different from Anisakis type I and Anisakis type II. Discussion: Zoonotic anisakids by high prevalence in edible fish could be a health hazard for people. So health practices should be considered in these areas. PMID:28096859

  7. Photoinactivation of Eight Health-Relevant Bacterial Species: Determining the Importance of the Exogenous Indirect Mechanism.

    PubMed

    Maraccini, Peter A; Wenk, Jannis; Boehm, Alexandria B

    2016-05-17

    It is presently unknown to what extent the endogenous direct, endogenous indirect, and exogenous indirect mechanisms contribute to bacterial photoinactivation in natural surface waters. In this study, we investigated the importance of the exogenous indirect mechanism by conducting photoinactivation experiments with eight health-relevant bacterial species (Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron, Campylobacter jejuni, Enterococcus faecalis, Escherichia coli K12, E. coli O157:H7, Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium LT2, Staphylococcus aureus, and Streptococcus bovis). We used three synthetic photosensitizers (methylene blue, rose bengal, and nitrite) and two model natural photosensitizers (Suwannee River natural organic matter and dissolved organic matter isolated from a wastewater treatment wetland) that generated singlet oxygen and hydroxyl radical. B. thetaiotaomicron had larger first order rate constants than all other organisms under all conditions tested. The presence of the synthetic photosensitizers generally enhanced photoinactivation of Gram-positive facultative anaerobes (Ent. faecalis, Staph. aureus, and Strep. bovis). Among Gram-negative bacteria, only methylene blue with E. coli K12 and rose bengal with C. jejuni showed an enhancing effect. The presence of model natural photosensitizers either reduced or did not affect photoinactivation rate constants. Our findings highlight the importance of the cellular membrane and photosensitizer properties in modulating the contribution of the exogenous indirect mechanism to the overall bacterial photoinactivation.

  8. Nordic-Baltic Student Teachers' Identification of and Interest in Plant and Animal Species: The Importance of Species Identification and Biodiversity for Sustainable Development

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palmberg, Irmeli; Berg, Ida; Jeronen, Eila; Kärkkäinen, Sirpa; Norrgård-Sillanpää, Pia; Persson, Christel; Vilkonis, Rytis; Yli-Panula, Eija

    2015-10-01

    Knowledge of species, interest in nature, and nature experiences are the factors that best promote interest in and understanding of environmental issues, biodiversity and sustainable life. The aim of this study is to investigate how well student teachers identify common local species, their interest in and ideas about species identification, and their perceptions of the importance of species identification and biodiversity for sustainable development. Totally 456 student teachers for primary schools were tested using an identification test and a questionnaire consisting of fixed and open questions. A combination of quantitative and qualitative methods was used to get a more holistic view of students' level of knowledge and their preferred learning methods. The student teachers' ability to identify very common species was low, and only 3 % were able to identify most of the tested species. Experiential learning outdoors was suggested by the majority of students as the most efficient learning method, followed by experiential learning indoors, project work and experimental learning. They looked upon the identification of plants and animals as `important' or `very important' for citizens today and for sustainable development. Likewise, they looked upon biodiversity as `important' or `very important' for sustainable development. Our conclusion is that teaching and learning methods for identification and knowledge of species and for education of biodiversity and sustainable development should always include experiential and project-based methods in authentic environments.

  9. Habitat use and movement patterns of Northern Pintails during spring in northern Japan: the importance of agricultural lands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Yamaguchi, Noriyuki M.; Hupp, Jerry W.; Flint, Paul L.; Pearce, John M.; Shigeta, Yusuke; Shimada, Tetsuo; Hiraoka, Emiko N.; Higuchi, Hiroyoshi

    2012-01-01

    From 2006 to 2009, we marked 198 Northern Pintails (Anas acuta) with satellite transmitters on their wintering areas in Japan to study their migration routes and habitat use in spring staging areas. We hypothesized that the distribution of pintails during spring staging was influenced by patterns of land use and expected that the most frequently used areas would have more agricultural habitat than lesser-used areas. We obtained 3031 daily locations from 163 migrant pintails marked with satellite transmitters and identified 524 stopover sites. Based on a fixed kernel home range analysis of stopover utilization distribution (UD), core staging areas (areas within the 50% UD) were identified in northern Honshu and western Hokkaido, and were used by 71% of marked pintails. Core staging areas had a greater proportion of rice fields than peripheral (51–95% UD) and rarely used (outside the 95% UD) staging areas. Stopover sites also contained more rice fields and other agricultural land than were available at regional scales, indicating that pintails selected rice and other agricultural habitats at regional and local scales. Pintails remained at spring staging areas an average of 51 d. Prolonged staging in agricultural habitats of northern Japan was likely necessary for pintails to prepare for transoceanic migration to Arctic nesting areas in eastern Russia.

  10. 75 FR 11512 - Consultative Group to Eliminate the Use of Child Labor and Forced Labor in Imported Agricultural...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-03-11

    ... INFORMATION CONTACT: The Office of Negotiations and Agreements by phone on (202) 720-6219; by e-mail addressed... other models, that have been successful in reducing child labor and/or forced labor in the global supply chains within the agricultural sector or other industries; (b) The roles and responsibilities that may...

  11. An Examination of Important Competencies Necessary for Vocational Agriculture in Selected Senior Secondary Students in Ijebu North Local Government Area, Nigeria

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Onanuga, Peter Abayomi

    2015-01-01

    The study analyses the relationship existing between some specified competencies important to vocational agriculture and preparation for occupation between male and female students in senior secondary schools in Ijebu-North Local Government Area, Nigeria. It adopted the classical design for change experiment (i.e. before and after measures) with…

  12. Mealybug species from Chilean agricultural landscapes and main factors influencing the genetic structure of Pseudococcus viburni.

    PubMed

    Correa, Margarita C G; Lombaert, Eric; Malausa, Thibaut; Crochard, Didier; Alvear, Andrés; Zaviezo, Tania; Palero, Ferran

    2015-11-12

    The present study aimed to characterize the distribution of mealybug species along Chilean agro-ecosystems and to determine the relative impact of host plant, management strategy, geography and micro-environment on shaping the distribution and genetic structure of the obscure mealybug Pseudococcus viburni. An extensive survey was completed using DNA barcoding methods to identify Chilean mealybugs to the species level. Moreover, a fine-scale study of Ps. viburni genetic diversity and population structure was carried out, genotyping 529 Ps. viburni individuals with 21 microsatellite markers. Samples from 16 localities were analyzed using Bayesian and spatially-explicit methods and the genetic dataset was confronted to host-plant, management and environmental data. Chilean crops were found to be infested by Ps. viburni, Pseudococcus meridionalis, Pseudococcus longispinus and Planococcus citri, with Ps. viburni and Ps. meridionalis showing contrasting distribution and host-plant preference patterns. Ps. viburni samples presented low genetic diversity levels but high genetic differentiation. While no significant genetic variance could be assigned to host-plant or management strategy, climate and geography were found to correlate significantly with genetic differentiation levels. The genetic characterization of Ps. viburni within Chile will contribute to future studies tracing back the origin and improving the management of this worldwide invader.

  13. Fate and risk of atrazine and sulfentrazone to nontarget species at an agriculture site.

    PubMed

    Thorngren, Jordan L; Harwood, Amanda D; Murphy, Tracye M; Huff Hartz, Kara E; Fung, Courtney Y; Lydy, Michael J

    2016-10-25

    The present study evaluated the risk associated with the application and co-occurrence of 2 herbicides, atrazine and sulfentrazone, applied to a 32-ha corn and soybean rotational field. Field concentrations of the compounds were measured in soil, runoff water, and groundwater, with peak mean atrazine and sulfentrazone concentrations found in the soil (144 ng/g dry wt, and 318 ng/g dry wt, respectively). Individual and mixture laboratory bioassays were conducted to determine the effects of atrazine and sulfentrazone on the survival of Daphnia magna and Pimephales promelas, the germination of Lactuca sativa, and the growth of Pseudokirchneriella subcapita and Lemna minor. Pseudokirchneriella subcapita and L. minor were the most susceptible species tested, and the effects on growth of the herbicides in mixtures best fit an independent action model. Risk quotients and margin of safety of 10% (MOS10) values were used to estimate risk and were calculated using runoff water concentrations. The MOS10 values were more sensitive than risk quotients in estimating risk. The MOS10 value for sulfentrazone runoff water concentration effects on P. subcapita was 7.8, and for L. minor was 1.1, with MOS10 values < 1 indicating potential risk. Overall, the environmentally relevant concentrations fell below the effect concentrations; therefore, atrazine and sulfentrazone posed little to no risk to the nontarget species tested. Environ Toxicol Chem 2016;9999:1-10. © 2016 SETAC.

  14. Mealybug species from Chilean agricultural landscapes and main factors influencing the genetic structure of Pseudococcus viburni

    PubMed Central

    Correa, Margarita C. G.; Lombaert, Eric; Malausa, Thibaut; Crochard, Didier; Alvear, Andrés; Zaviezo, Tania; Palero, Ferran

    2015-01-01

    The present study aimed to characterize the distribution of mealybug species along Chilean agro-ecosystems and to determine the relative impact of host plant, management strategy, geography and micro-environment on shaping the distribution and genetic structure of the obscure mealybug Pseudococcus viburni. An extensive survey was completed using DNA barcoding methods to identify Chilean mealybugs to the species level. Moreover, a fine-scale study of Ps. viburni genetic diversity and population structure was carried out, genotyping 529 Ps. viburni individuals with 21 microsatellite markers. Samples from 16 localities were analyzed using Bayesian and spatially-explicit methods and the genetic dataset was confronted to host-plant, management and environmental data. Chilean crops were found to be infested by Ps. viburni, Pseudococcus meridionalis, Pseudococcus longispinus and Planococcus citri, with Ps. viburni and Ps. meridionalis showing contrasting distribution and host-plant preference patterns. Ps. viburni samples presented low genetic diversity levels but high genetic differentiation. While no significant genetic variance could be assigned to host-plant or management strategy, climate and geography were found to correlate significantly with genetic differentiation levels. The genetic characterization of Ps. viburni within Chile will contribute to future studies tracing back the origin and improving the management of this worldwide invader. PMID:26559636

  15. 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.

  16. Semi-volatile inorganic species: importance for atmospheric chemical composition on diurnal and seasonal timescales

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pearce, Hana; Mann, Graham; Arnold, Stephen; O'Connor, Fiona; Benduhn, Francois; Rumbold, Steven; Pringle, Kirsty

    2016-04-01

    Nitrate aerosol has become an important driver of reduced European air quality and climate forcing, following reductions in sulphate precursor emissions since the 1980s, and is expected to be more influential in future decades. Measurements from the European Integrated Project on Aerosol and Cloud Climate Air Quality Interactions (EUCAARI) field campaign have shown that semi-volatile aerosol species such as ammonium nitrate can comprise a major component of the sub-micron particulate matter, particularly in high pollution episodes. This presentation will assess the contribution of semi-volatile inorganic aerosol to diurnal and seasonal cycles in atmospheric chemical composition over Europe. We use the UM-UKCA composition-climate model, including the GLOMAP interactive aerosol microphysics module and a recently developed 'hybrid' dissolution solver (HyDis) to accurately represent size-resolved partitioning of ammonia and nitric acid to the particle phase. In particular, we evaluate simulated size-resolved composition variations over Europe through the diurnal cycle, comparing hourly model output to Aerosol Mass Spectrometer observations at several sites during 2008. We will present the results of this composition analysis, in addition to model evaluation from comparisons with European Monitoring for Environmental Protection (EMEP) network and EUCAARI field campaign observations.

  17. Pulsed light for the inactivation of fungal biofilms of clinically important pathogenic Candida species.

    PubMed

    Garvey, Mary; Andrade Fernandes, Joao Paulo; Rowan, Neil

    2015-07-01

    Microorganisms are naturally found as biofilm communities more than planktonic free-floating cells; however, planktonic culture remains the current model for microbiological studies, such as disinfection techniques. The presence of fungal biofilms in the clinical setting has a negative impact on patient mortality, as Candida biofilms have proved to be resistant to biocides in numerous in vitro studies; however, there is limited information on the effect of pulsed light on sessile communities. Here we report on the use of pulsed UV light for the effective inactivation of clinically relevant Candida species. Fungal biofilms were grown by use of a CDC reactor on clinically relevant surfaces. Following a maximal 72 h formation period, the densely populated biofilms were exposed to pulsed light at varying fluences to determine biofilm sensitivity to pulsed-light inactivation. The results were then compared to planktonic cell inactivation. High levels of inactivation of C. albicans and C. parapsilosis biofilms were achieved with pulsed light for both 48 and 72 h biofilm structures. The findings suggest that pulsed light has the potential to provide a means of surface decontamination, subsequently reducing the risk of infection to patients. The research described herein deals with an important aspect of disease prevention and public health.

  18. Transposons play an important role in the evolution and diversification of centromeres among closely related species.

    PubMed

    Gao, Dongying; Jiang, Ning; Wing, Rod A; Jiang, Jiming; Jackson, Scott A

    2015-01-01

    Centromeres are important chromosomal regions necessary for eukaryotic cell segregation and replication. Due to high amounts of tandem repeats and transposons, centromeres have been difficult to sequence in most multicellular organisms, thus their sequence structure and evolution are poorly understood. In this study, we analyzed transposons in the centromere 8 (Cen8) from the African cultivated rice (O. glaberrima) and two subspecies of the Asian cultivated rice (O. sativa), indica and japonica. We detected much higher transposon contents (>69%) in centromere regions than in the whole genomes of O. sativa ssp. japonica and O. glaberrima (~35%). We compared the three Cen8s and identified numerous recent insertions of transposons that were frequently organized into multiple-layer nested blocks, similar to nested transposons in maize. Except for the Hopi retrotransposon, all LTR retrotransposons were shared but exhibit different abundances amongst the three Cen8s. Even though a majority of the transposons were located in intergenic regions, some gene-related transposons were found and may be involved in gene diversification. Chromatin immunoprecipitated (ChIP) data analysis revealed that 165 families from both Class I and Class II transposons were found in CENH3-associated chromatin sequences. These results indicate essential roles for transposons in centromeres and that the rapid divergence of the Cen8 sequences between the two cultivated rice species was primarily caused by recent transposon insertions.

  19. THERM: a computer code for estimating thermodynamic properties for species important to combustion and reaction modeling.

    PubMed

    Ritter, E R

    1991-08-01

    A computer package has been developed called THERM, an acronym for THermodynamic property Estimation for Radicals and Molecules. THERM is a versatile computer code designed to automate the estimation of ideal gas phase thermodynamic properties for radicals and molecules important to combustion and reaction-modeling studies. Thermodynamic properties calculated include heat of formation and entropies at 298 K and heat capacities from 300 to 1500 K. Heat capacity estimates are then extrapolated to above 5000 K, and NASA format polynomial thermodynamic property representations valid from 298 to 5000 K are generated. This code is written in Microsoft Fortran version 5.0 for use on machines running under MSDOS. THERM uses group additivity principles of Benson and current best values for bond strengths, changes in entropy, and loss of vibrational degrees of freedom to estimate properties for radical species from parent molecules. This ensemble of computer programs can be used to input literature data, estimate data when not available, and review, update, and revise entries to reflect improvements and modifications to the group contribution and bond dissociation databases. All input and output files are ASCII so that they can be easily edited, updated, or expanded. In addition, heats of reaction, entropy changes, Gibbs free-energy changes, and equilibrium constants can be calculated as functions of temperature from a NASA format polynomial database.

  20. Detection of four important Eimeria species by multiplex PCR in a single assay.

    PubMed

    You, Myung-Jo

    2014-06-01

    The oocysts of some of the recognized species of chicken coccidiosis are difficult to distinguish morphologically. Diagnostic laboratories are increasingly utilizing DNA-based technologies for the specific identification of Eimeria species. This study reports a multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay based on internal transcribed spacer-1 (ITS-1) for the simultaneous diagnosis of the Eimeria tenella, Eimeria acervulina, Eimeria maxima, and Eimeria necatrix species, which infect domestic fowl. Primer pairs specific to each species were designed in order to generate a ladder of amplification products ranging from 20 to 25 bp, and a common optimum annealing temperature for these species was determined to be 52.5 °C. Sensitivity tests were performed for each species, showing a detection threshold of 1-5 pg. All the species were amplified homogeneously, and a homogenous band ladder was observed, indicating that the assay permitted the simultaneous detection of all the species in a single-tube reaction. In the phylogenic study, there was a clear species clustering, which was irrespective of geographical location, for all the ITS-1 sequences used. This multiplex PCR assay represents a rapid and potential cost-effective diagnostic method for the detection of some key Eimeria species that infect domestic fowl.

  1. Short-term plant species impact on microbial community structure in soils with long-term agricultural history

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Plant-microbial interactions influence a wide range of biogeochemical processes governing the cycling of biologically important elements. Plant species have distinct impacts on biogeochemical processes and plant-microbial interactions in the rhizosphere account for many of the observed differences ...

  2. 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

  3. 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.

  4. The changing biodiversity of Alabama Drosophila: important impacts of seasonal variation, urbanization, and invasive species.

    PubMed

    Bombin, Andrei; Reed, Laura K

    2016-10-01

    Global warming and anthropogenic disturbances significantly influence the biosphere, tremendously increasing species extinction rates. In Central Alabama, we analyzed Drosophilidae species composition change nearly 100 years after the previous survey. We found ten Drosophilid species that were not reported during the last major biodiversity studies, two of which are invasive pests. In addition, we analyzed the influence of seasonal environmental variables characteristic of the subtropical climate zone on Drosophila abundance and biodiversity. We found a significant correlation between temperature and abundance of total Drosophila as well as for six of the seven most represented species individually, with a maximum abundance at intermediate temperatures (18-26°C). In addition, temperature was positively correlated with biodiversity of Drosophila. Precipitation produced a significant effect on the abundance of five species of Drosophila, with different optima for each species, but did not affect overall biodiversity. We concluded that in the subtropical climate zone of Central Alabama, seasonal temperature and precipitation changes produce a significant effect on Drosophila abundance and biodiversity, while local land use also impacts fly abundance, contributing to an apparent shift in species composition over the last century. We expect global climate change and other anthropogenic factors to further impact Drosophila species composition in the subtropical climate zone into the future.

  5. 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

  6. Killer activity of yeasts isolated from natural environments against some medically important Candida species.

    PubMed

    Vadkertiová, Renata; Sláviková, Elena

    2007-01-01

    Twenty-five yeast cultures, mainly of human origin, belonging to four pathogenic yeast species--Candida albicans, Candida krusei, Candida parapsilosis, and Candida tropicalis were tested for their sensitivity to ten basidiomycetous and eleven ascomycetous yeast species isolated from the water and soil environments and from tree leaves. The best killer activity among basidiomycetous species was exhibited by Rhodotorula glutinis, and R. mucilaginosa. The other carotenoid producing species Cystofilobasidium capitatum, Sporobolomyces salmonicolor, and S. roseus were active only against about 40% of the tested strains and exhibited weak activity. The broadest killer activity among ascomycetous yeasts was shown by the strains Pichia anomala and Metschnikowia pulcherrima. The species Debaryomyces castellii, Debaryomyces hansenii, Hanseniaspora guilliermondii, Pichia membranifaciens, and Williopsis californica did not show any killer activity. The best killer activity exhibited the strains isolated from leafy material. The lowest activity pattern was found among strains originating from soil environment.

  7. DDT and Derivatives in Indicator Species of the Aquatic Food Web of Rangsit Agricultural Area, Central Thailand

    PubMed Central

    Siriwong, W.; Thirakhupt, K.; Sitticharoenchai, D.; Rohitrattana, J.; Thongkongowm, P.; Borjan, M.; Robson, M.

    2009-01-01

    The presence of DDT and derivatives in the food web of freshwater ecosystems of Rangsit agricultural area, Pathum Thani Province, Thailand were investigated from June 2004 to May 2007. By using gas chromatography (GC) with micro electron capture detector (μ ECD), DDT and derivatives in water, sediment, and fifteen indicator species i.e., 2 producers; Eichhornia crassipes and plankton (phyto- and zoo- plankton), an herbivore; Trichogaster microlepis (3) 3 omnivores; Trichogaster trichopterus, Oreochromis niloticus, and Puntius gonionotus, 6 carnivores; Channa striatus, Oxyeleotris marmoratus, Macrognathus siamensis, Parambassis siamensis, Anabas testudineus, and Pristolepis fasciatus, and 3 detritivores; Macrobrachium lanchesteri, Pomacea sp., and Filopaludina mertensi were measured. Results show low concentration levels (part per billion) of DDT & derivatives in each food web compartment i.e. water, sediment, aquatic plant, plankton, fish, and invertebrates. Magnification patterns, i.e. bioconcentration, bioaccumulation, and biomagnification, based on habitat and foraging behavior of selected freshwater species indicates that DDT & derivatives can accumulate and be magnified through the food chain from the lowest up to the highest trophic level. Therefore, the presence of residues and the evidence of magnification patterns can be observed as ecological indicators for evaluating ecological health risk. PMID:20161116

  8. Are ecologically important tree species the most useful? A case study from indigenous people in the Bolivian Amazon.

    PubMed

    Guèze, Maximilien; Luz, Ana Catarina; Paneque-Gálvez, Jaime; Macía, Manuel J; Orta-Martínez, Martí; Pino, Joan; Reyes-García, Victoria

    2014-03-01

    Researchers have argued that indigenous peoples preferably use the most apparent plant species, particularly for medicinal uses. However, the association between the ecological importance of a species and its usefulness remains unclear. In this paper we quantify such association for six use categories (firewood, construction, materials, food, medicines and other uses). We collected data on the uses of 58 tree species, as reported by 93 informants in 22 villages in the Tsimane' territory (Bolivian Amazon). We calculated the ecological importance of the same species by deriving their importance value index (IVI) in 48 0.1-ha old-growth forest plots. Matching both data sets, we found a positive relation between the IVI of a species and its overall use value (UV) as well as with its UV for construction and materials. We found a negative relation between IVI and UV for species that were reportedly used for medicine and food uses, and no clear pattern for the other categories. We hypothesize that species used for construction or crafting purposes because of their physical properties are more easily substitutable than species used for medicinal or edible purposes because of their chemical properties.

  9. Are ecologically important tree species the most useful? A case study from indigenous people in the Bolivian Amazon

    PubMed Central

    Guèze, Maximilien; Luz, Ana Catarina; Paneque-Gálvez, Jaime; Macía, Manuel J.; Orta-Martínez, Martí; Pino, Joan; Reyes-García, Victoria

    2015-01-01

    Researchers have argued that indigenous peoples preferably use the most apparent plant species, particularly for medicinal uses. However, the association between the ecological importance of a species and its usefulness remains unclear. In this paper we quantify such association for six use categories (firewood, construction, materials, food, medicines and other uses). We collected data on the uses of 58 tree species, as reported by 93 informants in 22 villages in the Tsimane’ territory (Bolivian Amazon). We calculated the ecological importance of the same species by deriving their importance value index (IVI) in 48 0.1-ha old-growth forest plots. Matching both data sets, we found a positive relation between the IVI of a species and its overall use value (UV) as well as with its UV for construction and materials. We found a negative relation between IVI and UV for species that were reportedly used for medicine and food uses, and no clear pattern for the other categories. We hypothesize that species used for construction or crafting purposes because of their physical properties are more easily substitutable than species used for medicinal or edible purposes because of their chemical properties. PMID:26097243

  10. Importance of individual and environmental variation for invasive species spread: a spatial integral projection model.

    PubMed

    Jongejans, Eelke; Shea, Katriona; Skarpaas, Olav; Kelly, Dave; Ellner, Stephen P

    2011-01-01

    Plant survival, growth, and flowering are size dependent in many plant populations but also vary among individuals of the same size. This individual variation, along with variation in dispersal caused by differences in, e.g., seed release height, seed characteristics, and wind speed, is a key determinant of the spread rate of species through homogeneous landscapes. Here we develop spatial integral projection models (SIPMs) that include both demography and dispersal with continuous state variables. The advantage of this novel approach over discrete-stage spread models is that the effect of variation in plant size and size-dependent vital rates can be studied at much higher resolution. Comparing Neubert-Caswell matrix models to SIPMs allowed us to assess the importance of including individual variation in the models. As a test case we parameterized a SIPM with previously published data on the invasive monocarpic thistle Carduus nutans in New Zealand. Spread rate (c*) estimates were 34% lower than for standard spatial matrix models and stabilized with as few as seven evenly distributed size classes. The SIPM allowed us to calculate spread rate elasticities over the range of plant sizes, showing the size range of seedlings that contributed most to c* through their survival, growth and reproduction. The annual transitions of these seedlings were also the most important ones for local population growth (lambda). However, seedlings that reproduced within a year contributed relatively more to c* than to lambda. In contrast, plants that grow over several years to reach a large size and produce many more seeds, contributed relatively more to lambda than to c*. We show that matrix models pick up some of these details, while other details disappear within wide size classes. Our results show that SIPMs integrate various sources of variation much better than discrete-stage matrix models. Simpler, heuristic models, however, remain very valuable in studies where the main goal is

  11. The importance of scaling for detecting community patterns: success and failure in assemblages of introduced species

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Allen, Craig R.; Angeler, David G.; Moulton, Michael P.; Holling, Crawford S.

    2015-01-01

    Community saturation can help to explain why biological invasions fail. However, previous research has documented inconsistent relationships between failed invasions (i.e., an invasive species colonizes but goes extinct) and the number of species present in the invaded community. We use data from bird communities of the Hawaiian island of Oahu, which supports a community of 38 successfully established introduced birds and where 37 species were introduced but went extinct (failed invasions). We develop a modified approach to evaluate the effects of community saturation on invasion failure. Our method accounts (1) for the number of species present (NSP) when the species goes extinct rather than during its introduction; and (2) scaling patterns in bird body mass distributions that accounts for the hierarchical organization of ecosystems and the fact that interaction strength amongst species varies with scale. We found that when using NSP at the time of extinction, NSP was higher for failed introductions as compared to successful introductions, supporting the idea that increasing species richness and putative community saturation mediate invasion resistance. Accounting for scale-specific patterns in body size distributions further improved the relationship between NSP and introduction failure. Results show that a better understanding of invasion outcomes can be obtained when scale-specific community structure is accounted for in the analysis.

  12. Relative effects of disturbance on red imported fire ants and native ant species in a longleaf pine ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Stuble, Katharine L; Kirkman, L Katherine; Carroll, C Ronald; Sanders, Nathan J

    2011-06-01

    The degree to which changes in community composition mediate the probability of colonization and spread of non-native species is not well understood, especially in animal communities. High species richness may hinder the establishment of non-native species. Distinguishing between this scenario and cases in which non-native species become established in intact (lacking extensive anthropogenic soil disturbance) communities and subsequently diminish the abundance and richness of native species is challenging on the basis of observation alone. The red imported fire ant (Solenopsis invicta), an invasive species that occurs throughout much of the southeastern United States, is such an example. Rather than competitively displacing native species, fire ants may become established only in disturbed areas in which native species richness and abundance are already reduced. We used insecticide to reduce the abundance of native ants and fire ants in four experimental plots. We then observed the reassembly and reestablishment of the ants in these plots for 1 year after treatment. The abundance of fire ants in treated plots did not differ from abundance in control plots 1 year after treatment. Likewise, the abundance of native ants increased to levels comparable to those in control plots after 1 year. Our findings suggest that factors other than large reductions in ant abundance and species density (number of species per unit area) may affect the establishment of fire ants and that the response of native ants and fire ants to disturbance can be comparable.

  13. Heavy metals in molluscan, crustacean, and other commercially important Chilean marine coastal water species

    SciTech Connect

    Ober, A.G.; Gonzalez, M.; Santa Maria, I.

    1987-03-01

    The work reported here is part of a general program to monitor the marine chemical pollution along the Chilean coast. The present investigation was designated to provide information on the nature and levels of the heavy metals present in the marine species commonly consumed by the population, and to learn whether these levels may constitute a hazard to consumers. The authors report here the typical contents of 10 heavy metals in 12 commercially significant marine species from the Chilean coastal waters (Valparaiso, Concepcion and Puerto Montt). The analyzed species included 7 molluscs, 3 curstacea, and 2 other shellfish species of wide consumption. The metals chosen for analysis were copper, zinc, cadmium, lead, mercury, nickel, antimony, selenium, iron and chromium.

  14. Species identification of Middle Eastern blowflies (Diptera: Calliphoridae) of forensic importance.

    PubMed

    Akbarzadeh, Kamran; Wallman, James F; Sulakova, Hana; Szpila, Krzysztof

    2015-04-01

    The lack of reliable tools for species identification of necrophagous blowflies of the Middle East is a serious obstacle to the development of forensic entomology in the majority of countries of this region. Adding to the complexity of diagnosing the regional fauna is that species representing three different zoogeographical elements exist in sympatry. In response to this situation, a high-quality key to the adults of all species of forensically relevant blowflies of the Middle East has been prepared. Thanks to the modern technique of image-stack stereomicroscopy and high-quality entomological materials, this new key can be easily applied by investigators inexperienced in the taxonomy of blowflies. The major technical problems relating to the species identification of necrophagous blowflies of the Middle East are also discussed.

  15. Why is the choice of future climate scenarios for species distribution modelling important?

    PubMed

    Beaumont, Linda J; Hughes, Lesley; Pitman, A J

    2008-11-01

    Species distribution models (SDMs) are common tools for assessing the potential impact of climate change on species ranges. Uncertainty in SDM output occurs due to differences among alternate models, species characteristics and scenarios of future climate. While considerable effort is being devoted to identifying and quantifying the first two sources of variation, a greater understanding of climate scenarios and how they affect SDM output is also needed. Climate models are complex tools: variability occurs among alternate simulations, and no single 'best' model exists. The selection of climate scenarios for impacts assessments should not be undertaken arbitrarily - strengths and weakness of different climate models should be considered. In this paper, we provide bioclimatic modellers with an overview of emissions scenarios and climate models, discuss uncertainty surrounding projections of future climate and suggest steps that can be taken to reduce and communicate climate scenario-related uncertainty in assessments of future species responses to climate change.

  16. Cold atmospheric pressure plasma elimination of clinically important single- and mixed-species biofilms.

    PubMed

    Modic, Martina; McLeod, Neil P; Sutton, J Mark; Walsh, James L

    2017-03-01

    Mixed-species biofilms reflect the natural environment of many pathogens in clinical settings and are highly resistant to disinfection methods. An indirect cold atmospheric-pressure air-plasma system was evaluated under two different discharge conditions for its ability to kill representative Gram-positive (Staphylococcus aureus) and Gram-negative (Pseudomonas aeruginosa) pathogens. Plasma treatment of individual 24-h-old biofilms and mixed-species biofilms that contained additional species (Enterococcus faecalis and Klebsiella pneumoniae) was considered. Under plasma conditions that favoured the production of reactive nitrogen species (RNS), individual P. aeruginosa biofilms containing ca. 5.0 × 10(6) CFU were killed extremely rapidly, with no bacterial survival detected at 15 s of exposure. Staphylococcus aureus survived longer under these conditions, with no detectable growth after 60 s of exposure. In mixed-species biofilms, P. aeruginosa survived longer but all species were killed with no detectable growth at 60 s. Under plasma conditions that favoured the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), P. aeruginosa showed increased survival, with the lower limit of detection reached by 120 s, and S. aureus was killed in a similar time frame. In the mixed-species model, bacterial kill was biphasic but all pathogens showed viable cells after 240 s of exposure, with P. aeruginosa showing significant survival (ca. 3.6 ± 0.6 × 10(6) CFU). Overall, this study shows the potential of indirect air plasma treatment to achieve significant bacterial kill, but highlights aspects that might affect performance against key pathogens, especially in real-life settings within mixed populations.

  17. DNA barcoding of commercially important Grouper species (Perciformes, Serranidae) in the Philippines.

    PubMed

    Alcantara, Simon G; Yambot, Apolinario V

    2016-11-01

    Fish identification is generally challenging because of their unpronounced and overlapping morphological characters which is true in grouper species. In the Philippines, an updated, reliable and accurate inventory of this high value commercial groupers has not been carried out previously. Using molecular tools in the identification and inventory of fish species in the country is confined to few laboratories and experts in the country. In this study, 27 species of the Serranidae family were identified from the grouper samples collected from major fish landing sites and markets in the Philippines. The grouper species were molecularly identified using the cytochrome c oxidase I (COI) sequences for DNA barcoding. The accuracy of the inferred species-level taxonomy based on COI is supported with high similarity search (98-100%) both in BOLD and BLAST, well-distributed genetic distance values and cohesive clustering in the Neighbor-Joining Tree. Aside from reinforcing the classical methodology of grouper identification in the country, this pioneering study on molecular identification of Philippine groupers constitutes a significant contribution to the DNA barcode library of Philippine marine fishes and to the global barcode entries in general, which can be used when dealing with grouper taxonomy, biodiversity, stock assessment and trade. The results reveal the different localities where the grouper species can be possibly sourced out in the country for trade and aquaculture purposes. Several of the grouper species are included in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. As a tool for conservation ecology, this study signals the implementation of sustainable fisheries management regulation to protect in particular those which are listed under the IUCN.

  18. The importance of the riparian zone and in-stream processes in nitrate attenuation in undisturbed and agricultural watersheds – a review of the scientific literature

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ranalli, Anthony J.; Macalady, Donald L.

    2010-01-01

    We reviewed published studies from primarily glaciated regions in the United States, Canada, and Europe of the (1) transport of nitrate from terrestrial ecosystems to aquatic ecosystems, (2) attenuation of nitrate in the riparian zone of undisturbed and agricultural watersheds, (3) processes contributing to nitrate attenuation in riparian zones, (4) variation in the attenuation of nitrate in the riparian zone, and (5) importance of in-stream and hyporheic processes for nitrate attenuation in the stream channel. Our objectives were to synthesize the results of these studies and suggest methodologies to (1) monitor regional trends in nitrate concentration in undisturbed 1st order watersheds and (2) reduce nitrate loads in streams draining agricultural watersheds. Our review reveals that undisturbed headwater watersheds have been shown to be very retentive of nitrogen, but the importance of biogeochemical and hydrological riparian zone processes in retaining nitrogen in these watersheds has not been demonstrated as it has for agricultural watersheds. An understanding of the role of the riparian zone in nitrate attenuation in undisturbed watersheds is crucial because these watersheds are increasingly subject to stressors, such as changes in land use and climate, wildfire, and increases in atmospheric nitrogen deposition. In general, understanding processes controlling the concentration and flux of nitrate is critical to identifying and mapping the vulnerability of watersheds to water quality changes due to a variety of stressors. In undisturbed and agricultural watersheds we propose that understanding the importance of riparian zone processes in 2nd order and larger watersheds is critical. Research is needed that addresses the relative importance of how the following sources of nitrate along any given stream reach might change as watersheds increase in size and with flow: (1) inputs upstream from the reach, (2) tributary inflow, (3) water derived from the riparian zone

  19. The importance of the riparian zone and in-stream processes in nitrate attenuation in undisturbed and agricultural watersheds - A review of the scientific literature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ranalli, Anthony J.; Macalady, Donald L.

    2010-08-01

    SummaryWe reviewed published studies from primarily glaciated regions in the United States, Canada, and Europe of the (1) transport of nitrate from terrestrial ecosystems to aquatic ecosystems, (2) attenuation of nitrate in the riparian zone of undisturbed and agricultural watersheds, (3) processes contributing to nitrate attenuation in riparian zones, (4) variation in the attenuation of nitrate in the riparian zone, and (5) importance of in-stream and hyporheic processes for nitrate attenuation in the stream channel. Our objectives were to synthesize the results of these studies and suggest methodologies to (1) monitor regional trends in nitrate concentration in undisturbed 1st order watersheds and (2) reduce nitrate loads in streams draining agricultural watersheds. Our review reveals that undisturbed headwater watersheds have been shown to be very retentive of nitrogen, but the importance of biogeochemical and hydrological riparian zone processes in retaining nitrogen in these watersheds has not been demonstrated as it has for agricultural watersheds. An understanding of the role of the riparian zone in nitrate attenuation in undisturbed watersheds is crucial because these watersheds are increasingly subject to stressors, such as changes in land use and climate, wildfire, and increases in atmospheric nitrogen deposition. In general, understanding processes controlling the concentration and flux of nitrate is critical to identifying and mapping the vulnerability of watersheds to water quality changes due to a variety of stressors. In undisturbed and agricultural watersheds we propose that understanding the importance of riparian zone processes in 2nd order and larger watersheds is critical. Research is needed that addresses the relative importance of how the following sources of nitrate along any given stream reach might change as watersheds increase in size and with flow: (1) inputs upstream from the reach, (2) tributary inflow, (3) water derived from the

  20. Sampling Plant Diversity and Rarity at Landscape Scales: Importance of Sampling Time in Species Detectability

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Jian; Nielsen, Scott E.; Grainger, Tess N.; Kohler, Monica; Chipchar, Tim; Farr, Daniel R.

    2014-01-01

    Documenting and estimating species richness at regional or landscape scales has been a major emphasis for conservation efforts, as well as for the development and testing of evolutionary and ecological theory. Rarely, however, are sampling efforts assessed on how they affect detection and estimates of species richness and rarity. In this study, vascular plant richness was sampled in 356 quarter hectare time-unlimited survey plots in the boreal region of northeast Alberta. These surveys consisted of 15,856 observations of 499 vascular plant species (97 considered to be regionally rare) collected by 12 observers over a 2 year period. Average survey time for each quarter-hectare plot was 82 minutes, ranging from 20 to 194 minutes, with a positive relationship between total survey time and total plant richness. When survey time was limited to a 20-minute search, as in other Alberta biodiversity methods, 61 species were missed. Extending the survey time to 60 minutes, reduced the number of missed species to 20, while a 90-minute cut-off time resulted in the loss of 8 species. When surveys were separated by habitat type, 60 minutes of search effort sampled nearly 90% of total observed richness for all habitats. Relative to rare species, time-unlimited surveys had ∼65% higher rare plant detections post-20 minutes than during the first 20 minutes of the survey. Although exhaustive sampling was attempted, observer bias was noted among observers when a subsample of plots was re-surveyed by different observers. Our findings suggest that sampling time, combined with sample size and observer effects, should be considered in landscape-scale plant biodiversity surveys. PMID:24740179

  1. Sampling plant diversity and rarity at landscape scales: importance of sampling time in species detectability.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jian; Nielsen, Scott E; Grainger, Tess N; Kohler, Monica; Chipchar, Tim; Farr, Daniel R

    2014-01-01

    Documenting and estimating species richness at regional or landscape scales has been a major emphasis for conservation efforts, as well as for the development and testing of evolutionary and ecological theory. Rarely, however, are sampling efforts assessed on how they affect detection and estimates of species richness and rarity. In this study, vascular plant richness was sampled in 356 quarter hectare time-unlimited survey plots in the boreal region of northeast Alberta. These surveys consisted of 15,856 observations of 499 vascular plant species (97 considered to be regionally rare) collected by 12 observers over a 2 year period. Average survey time for each quarter-hectare plot was 82 minutes, ranging from 20 to 194 minutes, with a positive relationship between total survey time and total plant richness. When survey time was limited to a 20-minute search, as in other Alberta biodiversity methods, 61 species were missed. Extending the survey time to 60 minutes, reduced the number of missed species to 20, while a 90-minute cut-off time resulted in the loss of 8 species. When surveys were separated by habitat type, 60 minutes of search effort sampled nearly 90% of total observed richness for all habitats. Relative to rare species, time-unlimited surveys had ∼ 65% higher rare plant detections post-20 minutes than during the first 20 minutes of the survey. Although exhaustive sampling was attempted, observer bias was noted among observers when a subsample of plots was re-surveyed by different observers. Our findings suggest that sampling time, combined with sample size and observer effects, should be considered in landscape-scale plant biodiversity surveys.

  2. Natural establishment of woody species on abandoned agricultural fields in the lower Mississippi Valley: first- and second-year results

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Allen, J.A.; McCoy, J.W.; Keeland, B.D.

    1998-01-01

    The natural establishment of woody seedlings on abandoned agricultural fields was investigated at sites in Louisiana and Mississippi. Series of disked and undisked plots originating at forest edges and oriented in cardinal directions were established on fields at each site. During the firest 2 years, seedling recruitment was dominated by sweetgum, sugarberry, and elms at both sites. Seedling establishment was strongly affected by direction from mature forest and disking, and to a slightly lesser degree by distance from mature forest. Slightly under half of the variation in seedling numbers per plot was explained by the effects of direction, distance, and disking, indicating that other factors also may play an important role in seedling recruitment.

  3. Evaluation of candidate DNA barcoding loci for economically important timber species of the mahogany family (Meliaceae).

    PubMed

    Muellner, A N; Schaefer, H; Lahaye, R

    2011-05-01

    There has been considerable debate regarding locus choice for DNA barcoding land plants. This is partly attributable to a shortage of comparable data from proposed candidate loci on a common set of samples. In this study, we evaluated main candidate plastid regions (rpoC1, rpoB, accD) and additional plastid markers (psbB, psbN, psbT exons and the trnS-trnG spacer) as well as the nuclear ribosomal spacer region (ITS1-5.8S-ITS2) in a group of land plants belonging to the mahogany family, Meliaceae. Across these samples, only ITS showed high levels of resolvability. Interspecific sharing of sequences from individual plastid loci was common. The combination of multiple loci did not improve performance. DNA barcoding with ITS alone revealed cryptic species and proved useful in identifying species listed in Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species appendixes.

  4. Primer design for identifying economically important Liriomyza species (Diptera: Agromyzidae) by multiplex PCR.

    PubMed

    Nakamura, Shigeo; Masuda, Toshio; Mochizuki, Atsushi; Konishi, Kazuhiko; Tokumaru, Susumu; Ueno, Keiichiro; Yamaguchi, Takuhiro

    2013-01-01

    Leafminer flies, especially, Liriomyza huidobrensis, Liriomyza sativae and Liriomyza trifolii, are quarantine species in many countries. Their morphological similarity makes identification difficult. To develop a rapid, reliable, sensitive and simple molecular identification method using multiplex PCR, we newly sequenced the mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase I (COI) genes of Liriomyza bryoniae, Liriomyza chinensis, L. huidobrensis, L. sativae, L. trifolii, Chromatomyia horticola and four parasitoid species. We aligned them with all the COI sequences of the leafminer flies found in the international DNA nucleotide sequence databases (DDBJ/EMBL/GenBank). We then designed species-specific primers to allow us to differentiate between L. bryoniae, L. chinensis, L. huidobrensis, L. sativae, and L. trifolii.

  5. A survey of mosquitoes breeding in used tires in Spain for the detection of imported potential vector species.

    PubMed

    Roiz, D; Eritja, R; Escosa, R; Lucientes, J; Marquès, E; Melero-Alcíbar, R; Ruiz, S; Molina, R

    2007-06-01

    The used tire trade has facilitated the introduction, spread, and establishment of the Asian tiger mosquito, Aedes albopictus, and other mosquito species in several countries of America, Africa, Oceania, and Europe. A strategy for detecting these imported mosquito vectors was developed in Spain during 2003-2004 by EVITAR (multidisciplinary network for the study of viruses transmitted by arthropods and rodents). A survey in 45 locations found no invasive species. Eight autochthonous species of mosquitoes were detected in used tires, including Culex pipiens, Cx. hortensis, Cx. modestus, Anopheles atroparvus, An. claviger, Culiseta longiareolata, Cs. annulata, and Aedes caspius. Dominant species were Cx. pipiens and Cs. longiareolata. Aedes caspius was found in only once, near its natural breeding habitat. Considering the recent discovery of an established population of Ae. albopictus in Catalonia, the increasing commerce of used tires in Spain for recycling, storage, and recapping might greatly contribute to the rapid spread of this species across the Iberian Peninsula.

  6. 76 FR 38620 - International Fisheries; Atlantic Highly Migratory Species; Bluefin Tuna Import, Export, Re-Export

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-07-01

    ...; Bluefin Tuna Import, Export, Re-Export AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic... of importation into the United States and conduct of other transactions (such as export and...

  7. Farmers' perception on the importance of variegated grasshopper (Zonocerus variegatus (L.)) in the agricultural production systems of the humid forest zone of Southern Cameroon

    PubMed Central

    Kekeunou, Sévilor; Weise, Stephan; Messi, Jean; Tamò, Manuel

    2006-01-01

    Background Zonocerus variegatus (Linnaeus, 1758) (Orthoptera: Pyrgomorphidae) is known as an agricultural pest in West and Central Africa. However, its importance in the agricultural production system in Cameroon has not been investigated. The study assesses farmers' perception on the importance of Z. variegatus in the agricultural production systems of the humid forest zone of Southern Cameroon. Methods Research was carried out in 5 villages of each of three Agro-Ecological, Cultural and Demographic Blocks (AECD-Blocks) of the Forest Margin Benchmark Area (FMBA). In each village, a semi-structured survey was used; male and female groups of farmers were interviewed separately. Results Z. variegatus is present throughout the humid forest zone of Southern Cameroon, where it is ranked as the third most economically important insect pest of agriculture. In the farmers' opinion, Z. variegatus is a polyphagous insect with little impact on young perennial crops. The length of the pre-farming fallow does not affect Z. variegatus pest pressure in the following crops. The increased impact of the grasshopper observed today in the fields, compared to what existed 10 years ago is as a result of deforestation and increase in surface of herbaceous fallow. The damage caused by Z. variegatus is higher in fields adjacent to C. odorata and herbaceous fallows than in those adjacent to forests and shrubby fallows. The fight against this grasshopper is often done through physical methods carried out by hand, for human consumption. The farmers highlight low usage of the chemical methods and a total absence of biological and ecological methods. Conclusion Farmers' perception have contributed to understanding the status of Z. variegatus in the humid forest zone of Southern Cameroon. The results are in general similar to those obtained in other countries. PMID:16573815

  8. Rapid Differentiation of Aspergillus Species from Other Medically Important Opportunistic Molds and Yeasts by PCR-Enzyme Immunoassay

    PubMed Central

    de Aguirre, Liliana; Hurst, Steven F.; Choi, Jong Soo; Shin, Jong Hee; Hinrikson, Hans Peter; Morrison, Christine J.

    2004-01-01

    We developed a PCR-based assay to differentiate medically important species of Aspergillus from one another and from other opportunistic molds and yeasts by employing universal, fungus-specific primers and DNA probes in an enzyme immunoassay format (PCR-EIA). Oligonucleotide probes, directed to the internal transcribed spacer 2 region of ribosomal DNA from Aspergillus flavus, Aspergillus fumigatus, Aspergillus nidulans, Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus terreus, Aspergillus ustus, and Aspergillus versicolor, differentiated 41 isolates (3 to 9 each of the respective species; P < 0.001) in a PCR-EIA detection matrix and gave no false-positive reactions with 33 species of Acremonium, Exophiala, Candida, Fusarium, Mucor, Paecilomyces, Penicillium, Rhizopus, Scedosporium, Sporothrix, or other aspergilli tested. A single DNA probe to detect all seven of the most medically important Aspergillus species (A. flavus, A. fumigatus, A. nidulans, A. niger, A. terreus, A. ustus, and A. versicolor) was also designed. Identification of Aspergillus species was accomplished within a single day by the PCR-EIA, and as little as 0.5 pg of fungal DNA could be detected by this system. In addition, fungal DNA extracted from tissues of experimentally infected rabbits was successfully amplified and identified using the PCR-EIA system. This method is simple, rapid, and sensitive for the identification of medically important Aspergillus species and for their differentiation from other opportunistic fungi. PMID:15297489

  9. Interspecific shared collective decision-making in two forensically important species

    PubMed Central

    Deneubourg, Jean-Louis; Hédouin, Valéry

    2016-01-01

    To date, the study of collective behaviour has mainly focused on intraspecific situations: the collective decision-making of mixed-species groups involving interspecific aggregation–segregation has received little attention. Here, we show that, in both conspecific and heterospecific groups, the larvae of two species (Lucilia sericata and Calliphora vomitoria, calliphorid carrion-feeding flies) were able to make a collective choice. In all groups, the choice was made within a few minutes and persisted throughout the period of the experiment. The monitoring of a focal individual within a group showed that these aggregations were governed by attractive and retentive effects of the group. Furthermore, the similarity observed between the conspecific and heterospecific groups suggested the existence of shared aggregation signals. The group size was found to have a stronger influence than the species of necrophagous larvae. These results should be viewed in relation to the well-known correlation between group size and heat generation. This study provides the first experimental examination of the dynamics of collective decision-making in mixed-species groups of invertebrates, contributing to our understanding of the cooperation–competition phenomenon in animal social groups. PMID:26865296

  10. High resolution melting analysis for identification of commercially-important Mytilus species.

    PubMed

    Jilberto, Felipe; Araneda, Cristián; Larraín, María Angélica

    2017-08-15

    Mytilus are edible mussels, including commercially-significant species such as M. chilensis, M. galloprovincialis and M. edulis. The scientific name of the species must be indicated on commercial products to satisfy labelling and traceability requirements. Species identification using morphological criteria is difficult due the plasticity of these characteristics and the absence of shells in processed products, and conventional PCR-based methods are laborious and time-intensive. As alternative, we propose high resolution melting (HRM) analysis as a simple tool to detect and identify SNP (single nucleotide polymorphisms) and length polymorphisms in Mytilus spp. We designed HRM-specific primers for the Mytilus genus to identify M. chilensis, M. galloprovincialis, M. edulis and their hybrids through clearly-distinguishable melting curves. HRM analysis showed high sensitivity (0.9639), specificity (1.0000) and precision (1.0000) compared to a conventional PCR-RFLP test. HRM is a fast and low cost method, being a reliable tool for species identification within the Mytilus genus.

  11. Larvae of five horticulturally important species of Chrysopodes (Neuroptera, Chrysopidae): shared generic features, descriptions and keys

    PubMed Central

    Silva, Patrícia S.; Tauber, Catherine A.; Albuquerque, Gilberto S.; Tauber, Maurice J.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract An expanded list of generic level larval characteristics is presented for Chrysopodes; it includes a reinterpretation of the mesothoracic and metathoracic structure and setation. Keys, descriptions and images of Semaphoront A (first instar) and Semaphoront B (second and third instars) are offered for identifying five species of Chrysopodes (Chrysopodes) that are commonly reported from horticultural habitats in the Neotropical region. PMID:23653514

  12. The ecological importance of the Staphylococcus sciuri species group as a reservoir for resistance and virulence genes.

    PubMed

    Nemeghaire, Stéphanie; Argudín, M Angeles; Feßler, Andrea T; Hauschild, Tomasz; Schwarz, Stefan; Butaye, Patrick

    2014-07-16

    The Staphylococcus sciuri species group includes five species that are most often presented as commensal animal-associated bacteria. The species of this group are Staphylococcus sciuri (with three subspecies), Staphylococcus lentus, Staphylococcus vitulinus, Staphylococcus fleurettii and Staphylococcus stepanovicii. Members of these group are commonly found in a broad range of habitats including animals, humans and the environment. However, those species have been isolated also from infections, both in veterinary and human medicine. Members of this group have been shown to be pathogenic, though infections caused by these species are infrequent. Furthermore, members of the S. sciuri species group have also been found to carry multiple virulence and resistance genes. Indeed, genes implicated in biofilm formation or coding for toxins responsible of toxic shock syndrome and multi-resistance, similar to those carried by Staphylococcus aureus, were detected. This group may thereby represent a reservoir for other bacteria. Despite its recognized abundance as commensal bacteria and its possible role as reservoir of virulence and resistance genes for other staphylococci, the S. sciuri species group is often considered harmless and, as such, not as well documented as, for example, S. aureus. More investigation into the role of the S. sciuri species group as commensal and pathogenic bacteria is required to fully assess its medical and veterinary importance.

  13. Atlas of Relations Between Climatic Parameters and Distributions of Important Trees and Shrubs in North America - Alaska Species and Ecoregions

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Thompson, Robert S.; Anderson, Katherine H.; Strickland, Laura E.; Shafer, Sarah L.; Pelltier, Richard T.; Bartlein, Patrick J.

    2006-01-01

    Climate is the primary factor in controlling the continental-scale distribution of plant species, although the relations between climatic parameters and species' ranges is only now beginning to be quantified. Preceding volumes of this atlas explored the continental-scale relations between climatic parameters and the distributions of woody plant species across all of the continent of North America. This volume presents similar information for important woody species, groups of species, and ecoregions in more detail for the State of Alaska. For these analyses, we constructed a 25-kilometer equal-area grid of modern climatic and bioclimatic parameters for North America from instrumental weather records. We obtained a digital representation of the geographic distribution of each species or ecoregion, either from a published source or by digitizing the published distributions ourselves. The presence or absence of each species or ecoregion was then determined for each point on the 25-kilometer grid, thus providing a basis for comparison of the climatic data with the geographic distribution of each species or ecoregion. The relations between climate and these distributions are presented in graphical and tabular form.

  14. [Distribution of species and kdr gene frequency among Anopheles gambiae s.s. and Anopheles coluzzii populations in five agricultural sites in Côte d'Ivoire].

    PubMed

    Tia, E; Chouaibou, M; Gbalégba, C N G; Boby, A M O; Koné, M; Kadjo, A K

    2017-03-29

    The resistance of Anopheles gambiae s.l. to insecticides constitutes a concern for the programs of malaria control because it can be an obstacle to effective control of the vectors. The follow-up of this resistance is a priority to work out strategies of management and to preserve the means of that major malaria vector control activities. The general objective of this study is to identify the species within An. gambiae s.l., and to determine the frequency of the Kdr gene in An. gambiae s.s. and An. coluzzii in five agricultural sites in Ivory Coast: an urban site, two semirural sites (coffee-trees/cacao-trees, orchard) and two rural sites (rice site and a traditional village without agricultural insecticide). During this study, 2285 specimens of An. gambiae s.l. were analyzed for this purpose. An. gambiae s.s. (in the past called molecular form S) and An. coluzzii (in the past called molecular form M) were the only species of the complex An. gambiae identified in all the sites. The frequency of the Kdr mutation varied from 0.37 in the site without agricultural insecticide to 0.95 in the urban site where there is an intense use of insecticides. Three areas of these species distribution were observed: an area where the species An. gambiae s.s. is dominant (sites located in savanna), an area with predominance of An. coluzzii (in the southern forested area) and an intermediate area where the two species were in a same proportion (pre-forested site).The Kdr mutation was identified in the two species in all the sites in savanna and forest, except in the site without agricultural insecticide where only An. gambiae was resistant. It shows the increase of the receptive potential of An. gambiae s.l. with respect to the Kdr gene and the extension of the resistance to insecticide of this species in Ivory Coast.

  15. Biogenic Volatile Organic Compound (BVOC) emissions from agricultural crop species: is guttation a possible source for methanol emissions following light/dark transition ?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mozaffar, Ahsan; Amelynck, Crist; Bachy, Aurélie; Digrado, Anthony; Delaplace, Pierre; du Jardin, Patrick; Fauconnier, Marie-Laure; Schoon, Niels; Aubinet, Marc; Heinesch, Bernard

    2015-04-01

    In the framework of the CROSTVOC (CROp STress VOC) project, the exchange of biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs) between two important agricultural crop species, maize and winter wheat, and the atmosphere has recently been measured during an entire growing season by using the eddy covariance technique. Because of the co-variation of BVOC emission drivers in field conditions, laboratory studies were initiated in an environmental chamber in order to disentangle the responses of the emissions to variations of the individual environmental parameters (such as PPFD and temperature) and to diverse abiotic stress factors. Young plants were enclosed in transparent all-Teflon dynamic enclosures (cuvettes) through which BVOC-free and RH-controlled air was sent. BVOC enriched air was subsequently sampled from the plant cuvettes and an empty cuvette (background) and analyzed for BVOCs in a high sensitivity Proton Transfer Reaction Mass Spectrometer (hs-PTR-MS) and for CO2 in a LI-7000 non-dispersive IR gas analyzer. Emissions were monitored at constant temperature (25 °C) and at a stepwise varying PPFD pattern (0-650 µmol m-2 s-1). For maize plants, sudden light/dark transitions at the end of the photoperiod were accompanied by prompt and considerable increases in methanol (m/z 33) and water vapor (m/z 39) emissions. Moreover, guttation droplets appeared on the sides and the tips of the leaves within a few minutes after light/dark transition. Therefore the assumption has been raised that methanol is also coming out with guttation fluid from the leaves. Consequently, guttation fluid was collected from young maize and wheat plants, injected in an empty enclosure and sampled by PTR-MS. Methanol and a large number of other compounds were observed from guttation fluid. Recent studies have shown that guttation from agricultural crops frequently occurs in field conditions. Further research is required to find out the source strength of methanol emissions by this guttation

  16. [Description and key to the main species of Calliphoridae (Diptera) larvae of forensic importance from Colombia].

    PubMed

    Florez, Eliana; Wolff, Marta

    2009-01-01

    Larvae of 13 blowfly species from Colombia are described and an illustrated key for all them is presented. All larval instars of Calliphora nigribasis Macquart, Cochliomyia macellaria (Fabricius), Chrysomya albiceps (Wiedemann), Chrysomya megacephala (Fabricius), Hemilucilia segmentaria (Fabricius), Hemilucilia semidiaphana (Rondani), Lucilia eximia (Weidemann) are described, but the second and third instars of Compsomyiops verena (Walter), and only the third instar of Calliphora vicina Robineau-Desvoidy, Cochliomyia hominivorax (Coquerel), Lucilia peruviana Robineau-Desvoidy, Lucilia sericata (Meigen) and Sarconesiopsis magellanica (Le Guillou).

  17. Global tropospheric chemistry models for radiatively important trace species: Design and research recommendations

    SciTech Connect

    Barchet, W.R.; Brothers, A.J.; Berkowitz, C.M.; Easter, R.C.; Ghan, S.J.; Saylor, R.D.

    1993-12-01

    Changes in the Earth`s climate could significantly affect regional and global concentrations of trace species that are criteria pollutants regulated by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The policy community also needs to know how changes in global natural and anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases, particulate aerosols, and aerosol precursors will affect the distribution and concentration of these pollutants. This report maps out one path for obtaining this information.

  18. Optimal allocation of conservation effort among subpopulations of a threatened species: how important is patch quality?

    PubMed

    Chauvenet, Aliénor L M; Baxter, Peter W J; McDonald-Madden, Eve; Possingham, Hugh P

    2010-04-01

    Money is often a limiting factor in conservation, and attempting to conserve endangered species can be costly. Consequently, a framework for optimizing fiscally constrained conservation decisions for a single species is needed. In this paper we find the optimal budget allocation among isolated subpopulations of a threatened species to minimize local extinction probability. We solve the problem using stochastic dynamic programming, derive a useful and simple alternative guideline for allocating funds, and test its performance using forward simulation. The model considers subpopulations that persist in habitat patches of differing quality, which in our model is reflected in different relationships between money invested and extinction risk. We discover that, in most cases, subpopulations that are less efficient to manage should receive more money than those that are more efficient to manage, due to higher investment needed to reduce extinction risk. Our simple investment guideline performs almost as well as the exact optimal strategy. We illustrate our approach with a case study of the management of the Sumatran tiger, Panthera tigris sumatrae, in Kerinci Seblat National Park (KSNP), Indonesia. We find that different budgets should be allocated to the separate tiger subpopulations in KSNP. The subpopulation that is not at risk of extinction does not require any management investment. Based on the combination of risks of extinction and habitat quality, the optimal allocation for these particular tiger subpopulations is an unusual case: subpopulations that occur in higher-quality habitat (more efficient to manage) should receive more funds than the remaining subpopulation that is in lower-quality habitat. Because the yearly budget allocated to the KSNP for tiger conservation is small, to guarantee the persistence of all the subpopulations that are currently under threat we need to prioritize those that are easier to save. When allocating resources among subpopulations

  19. The Change of a Medically Important Genus: Worldwide Occurrence of Genetically Diverse Novel Brucella Species in Exotic Frogs.

    PubMed

    Scholz, Holger C; Mühldorfer, Kristin; Shilton, Cathy; Benedict, Suresh; Whatmore, Adrian M; Blom, Jochen; Eisenberg, Tobias

    2016-01-01

    The genus Brucella comprises various species of both veterinary and human medical importance. All species are genetically highly related to each other, sharing intra-species average nucleotide identities (ANI) of > 99%. Infections occur among various warm-blooded animal species, marine mammals, and humans. Until recently, amphibians had not been recognized as a host for Brucella. In this study, however, we show that novel Brucella species are distributed among exotic frogs worldwide. Comparative recA gene analysis of 36 frog isolates from various continents and different frog species revealed an unexpected high genetic diversity, not observed among classical Brucella species. In phylogenetic reconstructions the isolates consequently formed various clusters and grouped together with atypical more distantly related brucellae, like B. inopinata, strain BO2, and Australian isolates from rodents, some of which were isolated as human pathogens. Of one frog isolate (10RB9215) the genome sequence was determined. Comparative genome analysis of this isolate and the classical Brucella species revealed additional genetic material, absent from classical Brucella species but present in Ochrobactrum, the closest genetic neighbor of Brucella, and in other soil associated genera of the Alphaproteobacteria. The presence of gene clusters encoding for additional metabolic functions, flanked by tRNAs and mobile genetic elements, as well as by bacteriophages is suggestive for a different ecology compared to classical Brucella species. Furthermore it suggests that amphibian isolates may represent a link between free living soil saprophytes and the pathogenic Brucella with a preferred intracellular habitat. We therefore assume that brucellae from frogs have a reservoir in soil and, in contrast to classical brucellae, undergo extensive horizontal gene transfer.

  20. The Change of a Medically Important Genus: Worldwide Occurrence of Genetically Diverse Novel Brucella Species in Exotic Frogs

    PubMed Central

    Scholz, Holger C.; Mühldorfer, Kristin; Shilton, Cathy; Benedict, Suresh; Whatmore, Adrian M.; Blom, Jochen; Eisenberg, Tobias

    2016-01-01

    The genus Brucella comprises various species of both veterinary and human medical importance. All species are genetically highly related to each other, sharing intra-species average nucleotide identities (ANI) of > 99%. Infections occur among various warm-blooded animal species, marine mammals, and humans. Until recently, amphibians had not been recognized as a host for Brucella. In this study, however, we show that novel Brucella species are distributed among exotic frogs worldwide. Comparative recA gene analysis of 36 frog isolates from various continents and different frog species revealed an unexpected high genetic diversity, not observed among classical Brucella species. In phylogenetic reconstructions the isolates consequently formed various clusters and grouped together with atypical more distantly related brucellae, like B. inopinata, strain BO2, and Australian isolates from rodents, some of which were isolated as human pathogens. Of one frog isolate (10RB9215) the genome sequence was determined. Comparative genome analysis of this isolate and the classical Brucella species revealed additional genetic material, absent from classical Brucella species but present in Ochrobactrum, the closest genetic neighbor of Brucella, and in other soil associated genera of the Alphaproteobacteria. The presence of gene clusters encoding for additional metabolic functions, flanked by tRNAs and mobile genetic elements, as well as by bacteriophages is suggestive for a different ecology compared to classical Brucella species. Furthermore it suggests that amphibian isolates may represent a link between free living soil saprophytes and the pathogenic Brucella with a preferred intracellular habitat. We therefore assume that brucellae from frogs have a reservoir in soil and, in contrast to classical brucellae, undergo extensive horizontal gene transfer. PMID:28036367

  1. Molecular phylogeny of commercially important lobster species from Indian coast inferred from mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequences.

    PubMed

    Jeena, N S; Gopalakrishnan, A; Radhakrishnan, E V; Kizhakudan, Joe K; Basheer, V S; Asokan, P K; Jena, J K

    2016-07-01

    Lobsters constitute low-volume high-value crustacean fishery resource along Indian coast. For the conservation and management of this declining resource, accurate identification of species and larvae is essential. The objectives of this work were to generate species-specific molecular signatures of 11 commercially important species of lobsters of families Palinuridae and Scyllaridae and to reconstruct a phylogeny to clarify the evolutionary relationships among genera and species included in this study. Partial sequences were generated for all the candidate species from sampling sites along the Indian coast using markers like Cytochrome oxidase I (COI), 16SrRNA, 12SrRNA, and 18SrRNA genes, and analyzed. The genetic identities of widely distributed Thenus species along the Indian coast to be Thenus unimaculatus and the sub-species of Panulirus homarus to be P. homarus homarus were confirmed. Phylogeny reconstruction using the individual gene and concatenated mtDNA data set were carried out. The overall results suggested independent monophyly of Scyllaridae and Stridentes of Palinuridae. The interspecific divergence was found to be highest for the 12SrRNA compared with other genes. Significant incongruence between mtDNA and nuclear 18SrRNA gene tree topologies was observed. The results hinted an earlier origin for Palinuridae compared with Scyllaridae. The DNA sequence data generated from this study will aid in the correct identification of lobster larvae and will find application in research related to larval transport and distribution.

  2. Environmental Drivers of Culicoides Phenology: How Important Is Species-Specific Variation When Determining Disease Policy?

    PubMed Central

    Searle, Kate R.; Barber, James; Stubbins, Francesca; Labuschagne, Karien; Carpenter, Simon; Butler, Adam; Denison, Eric; Sanders, Christopher; Mellor, Philip S.; Wilson, Anthony; Nelson, Noel; Gubbins, Simon; Purse, Bethan V.

    2014-01-01

    Since 2006, arboviruses transmitted by Culicoides biting midges (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) have caused significant disruption to ruminant production in northern Europe. The most serious incursions involved strains of bluetongue virus (BTV), which cause bluetongue (BT) disease. To control spread of BTV, movement of susceptible livestock is restricted with economic and animal welfare impacts. The timing of BTV transmission in temperate regions is partly determined by the seasonal presence of adult Culicoides females. Legislative measures therefore allow for the relaxation of ruminant movement restrictions during winter, when nightly light-suction trap catches of Culicoides fall below a threshold (the ‘seasonally vector free period’: SVFP). We analysed five years of time-series surveillance data from light-suction trapping in the UK to investigate whether significant inter-specific and yearly variation in adult phenology exists, and whether the SVFP is predictable from environmental factors. Because female vector Culicoides are not easily morphologically separated, inter-specific comparisons in phenology were drawn from male populations. We demonstrate significant inter-specific differences in Culicoides adult phenology with the season of Culicoides scoticus approximately eight weeks shorter than Culicoides obsoletus. Species-specific differences in the length of the SVFP were related to host density and local variation in landscape habitat. When the Avaritia Culicoides females were modelled as a group (as utilised in the SFVP), we were unable to detect links between environmental drivers and phenological metrics. We conclude that the current treatment of Avaritia Culicoides as a single group inhibits understanding of environmentally-driven spatial variation in species phenology and hinders the development of models for predicting the SVFP from environmental factors. Culicoides surveillance methods should be adapted to focus on concentrated assessments of species

  3. Ectoparasites of commensal rodents in Sulawesi Utara, Indonesia, with notes on species of medical importance.

    PubMed

    Durden, L A; Page, B F

    1991-01-01

    Ectoparasite records are presented for four species of commensal murid rodents (Rattus rattus palelae Miller & Hollister, R. argentiventer (Robinson & Kloss), R. exulans (Peale) and Mus musculus castaneus Waterhouse) in Sulawesi Utara, with particular reference to the potential for these arthropods to bite and transmit pathogens to humans. The flea, Xenopsylla cheopis (Rothschild), was most common on R.r. palelae and is capable of transmitting plague and other pathogens to humans although no current foci for these diseases are known in Sulawesi. Hoplopleura pacifica Ewing and Polyplax spinulosa (Burmeister) sucking lice parasitized all three Rattus species although H. pacifica was mainly associated with R. exulans and P. spinulosa with R.r. palelae. These lice do not bite humans but may be intramurid vectors of murine typhus and other zoonoses. The mites Laelaps echidnina Berlese and L. nuttalli Hirst were both collected; the latter was recorded from all four murid species, mainly R. exulans. The mite Ornithonyssus bacoti Hirst was rare. Only one chigger mite, Walchiella oudemansi (Walch), was retrieved from murids (from R. exulans) and a single Leptotrombidium deliense (Walch) chigger was taken from a human subject. Although L. deliense is a significant vector of scrub typhus, a disease known from Sulawesi, the L. deliense-R. argentiventer relationship frequently noted in the ecology of this rickettsial disease, was not evident in this survey. Other ectoparasites collected from murids were the ticks, Ixodes granulatus Supino (first record for Sulawesi), Haemaphysalis sp. and Dermacentor sp., the mites Myocoptes musculinus (Koch) and Listrophoroides cucullatus (Trouessart), acarids and a uropodid.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

  4. Environmental drivers of Culicoides phenology: how important is species-specific variation when determining disease policy?

    PubMed

    Searle, Kate R; Barber, James; Stubbins, Francesca; Labuschagne, Karien; Carpenter, Simon; Butler, Adam; Denison, Eric; Sanders, Christopher; Mellor, Philip S; Wilson, Anthony; Nelson, Noel; Gubbins, Simon; Purse, Bethan V

    2014-01-01

    Since 2006, arboviruses transmitted by Culicoides biting midges (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) have caused significant disruption to ruminant production in northern Europe. The most serious incursions involved strains of bluetongue virus (BTV), which cause bluetongue (BT) disease. To control spread of BTV, movement of susceptible livestock is restricted with economic and animal welfare impacts. The timing of BTV transmission in temperate regions is partly determined by the seasonal presence of adult Culicoides females. Legislative measures therefore allow for the relaxation of ruminant movement restrictions during winter, when nightly light-suction trap catches of Culicoides fall below a threshold (the 'seasonally vector free period': SVFP). We analysed five years of time-series surveillance data from light-suction trapping in the UK to investigate whether significant inter-specific and yearly variation in adult phenology exists, and whether the SVFP is predictable from environmental factors. Because female vector Culicoides are not easily morphologically separated, inter-specific comparisons in phenology were drawn from male populations. We demonstrate significant inter-specific differences in Culicoides adult phenology with the season of Culicoides scoticus approximately eight weeks shorter than Culicoides obsoletus. Species-specific differences in the length of the SVFP were related to host density and local variation in landscape habitat. When the Avaritia Culicoides females were modelled as a group (as utilised in the SFVP), we were unable to detect links between environmental drivers and phenological metrics. We conclude that the current treatment of Avaritia Culicoides as a single group inhibits understanding of environmentally-driven spatial variation in species phenology and hinders the development of models for predicting the SVFP from environmental factors. Culicoides surveillance methods should be adapted to focus on concentrated assessments of species

  5. The relative importance of fertilization and soil erosion on C-dynamics in agricultural landscapes of NE Germany

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pohl, Madlen; Hoffmann, Mathias; Hagemann, Ulrike; Jurisch, Nicole; Remus, Rainer; Sommer, Michael; Augustin, Jürgen

    2016-04-01

    The hummocky ground moraine landscape of north-east Germany is characterized by distinct small-scale soil heterogeneity on the one hand, and intensive energy crop cultivation on the other. Both factors are assumed to significantly influence gaseous C exchange, and thus driving the dynamics of soil organic carbon stocks in terrestrial, agricultural ecosystems. However, it is not yet clear to which extent fertilization and soil erosional status influence soil C dynamics and whether one of these factors is more relevant than the other. We present seasonal and dynamic soil C balances of biogas maize for the growing season 2011, recorded at different sites located within the CarboZALF experimental area. The sites differ regarding soils (non-eroded Albic Luvisols (Cutanic), extremely eroded Calcaric Regosol and depositional Endogleyic Colluvic Regosol,) and applied fertilizer (100% mineral N fertilizer, 50% mineral and 50% N organic fertilizer, 100% organic N fertilizer). Fertilization treatments were established on the Albic Luvisol (Cutanic). Net-CO2-exchange (NEE) and ecosystem respiration (Reco) were measured every four weeks using a dynamic flow-through non-steady-state closed manual chamber system. Gap filling was performed based on empirical temperature and PAR dependency functions to derive daily NEE values. At the same time, daily above-ground biomass production (NPP) was estimated based on biomass samples and final harvest, using a sigmoidal growth function. In a next step, dynamic soil C balances were generated as the balance of daily NEE and NPP considering the initial C input due to N fertilizers. The resulted seasonal soil C balances varied from strong C losses at the Endogleyic Colluvic Regosol (602 g C m-2) to C gains at the Calcaric Regosol (-132 g C m-2). In general, soils exerted a stronger impact on seasonal and dynamic C balances compared to differences in applied N fertilizer. There are indications that inter-annual variations in climate conditions

  6. The relative importance of respiratory water loss in scorpions is correlated with species habitat type and activity pattern.

    PubMed

    Gefen, Eran

    2011-01-01

    Scorpions exhibit some of the lowest recorded water loss rates compared with those of other terrestrial arthropods of similar body size. Evaporative water loss (EWL) includes cuticular transpiration and respiratory water loss (RWL) from gas exchange surfaces, that is, book lung lamellae. Estimated fractions of cuticular and respiratory losses currently available from the literature show considerable variation, at least partly as a result of differences in methodology. This study reports RWL rates and their relative importance in scorpions from two families (Buthidae and Scorpionidae), including both xeric and mesic species (or subspecies). Two of the included Buthidae were surface-dwelling species, and another inhabits empty burrows of other terrestrial arthropods. This experimental design enabled correlating RWL importance with scorpion phylogeny, habitat type, and/or homing behavior. Buthidae species exhibited significantly lower EWL rates compared with those of Scorpionidae, whereas effects of habitat type and homing behavior were not significant. Resting RWL rates were not significantly affected by scorpion phylogeny, but rates for the xeric species (totaling ~10% of EWL rates at 30°C) were significantly lower compared with those of mesic species. These lower RWL values were correlated with significantly lower H(2)O/CO(2) emission rates in xeric species. The experimental setup and ~24-h duration of each individual recording allowed estimating the effect of interspecific variation in activity on RWL proportions. The high respiratory losses in active hydrated Scorpio maurus fuscus, totaling 30% of EWL, suggest that behavioral discretion in this species is a more likely mechanism for body water conservation under stressful conditions when compared with the responses of other studied species.

  7. Impact of larval pathogen infection on conspecific oviposition preference of three medically important mosquito species of Florida.

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Oviposition responses of three medically important mosquito species were evaluated in two-choice bioassays to determine if larval pathogen infection affected oviposition site choice. Both Aedes aegypti and Ae. albopictus laid significantly fewer eggs in cups containing infected larvae, however, Cule...

  8. In vitro susceptibility patterns of clinically important Trichophyton and Epidermophyton species against nine antifungal drugs.

    PubMed

    Badali, Hamid; Mohammadi, Rasoul; Mashedi, Olga; de Hoog, G Sybren; Meis, Jacques F

    2015-05-01

    Despite the common, worldwide, occurrence of dermatophytes, little information is available regarding susceptibility profiles against currently available and novel antifungal agents. A collection of sixty-eight clinical Trichophyton species and Epidermophyton floccosum were previously identified and verified to the species level by sequencing the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) regions of rDNA. MICs of amphotericin B, fluconazole, itraconazole, voriconazole, posaconazole, isavuconazole, terbinafine and MECs of caspofungin and anidulafungin were performed based on CLSI M38-A2. The resulting MIC90 s of all strains were, in increasing order, as follows: terbinafine (0.063 mg l(-1) ); posaconazole (1 mg l(-1) ); isavuconazole and anidulafungin (2 mg l(-1) ); itraconazole, voriconazole, amphotericin B, and caspofungin (4 mg l(-1) ) and fluconazole (>64 mg l(-1) ). These results confirm that terbinafine is an excellent agent for treatment of dermatophytosis due to T. rubrum, T. mentagrophytes, T. verrucosum, T. schoenleinii and E. floccosum. In addition, the new azoles POS and ISA are potentially useful antifungals to treat dermatophytosis. However, the clinical effectiveness of these novel antifungals remains to be determined.

  9. Are fungi important for breaking seed dormancy in desert species? Experimental evidence in Opuntia streptacantha (Cactaceae).

    PubMed

    Delgado-Sánchez, P; Ortega-Amaro, M A; Jiménez-Bremont, J F; Flores, J

    2011-01-01

    Seeds of Opuntia spp. have physiological dormancy; they need a period of after-ripening to break dormancy, and the embryos have low growth potential. We evaluated the combined effects of seed age and presence of fungi on the testa on germination of Opuntia streptacantha, an abundant species in the Chihuahuan Desert (Mexico), assuming that older seeds have broken seed dormancy and fungi can reduce mechanical resistance to germination. In a preliminary experiment, we found no germination of 9-year-old (1998) and freshly collected (2007) seeds. However, we obtained 67% and 27% germination from 9-year-old and fresh non-sterilized seeds, respectively, and found fungi growing on the testa of all germinated seeds. Two fungal strains were isolated and identified using ribosomal internal transcribed spacer (ITS) sequence analysis: Penicillium chrysogenum and Phoma sp. In a second experiment, we inoculated seeds with strains of P. chrysogenum and Phoma sp., as well as Trichoderma koningii and binucleate Rhizoctonia (Gto17S2), to evaluate their ability to break seed dormancy. Seeds inoculated with P. chrysogenum, Phoma sp. and T. koningii had higher germination than controls for both seed ages, but germination was higher in older seeds. Scanning electron microscopy showed that these fungi eroded the funiculus, reducing its resistance. Binucleate Rhizoctonia did not lead to germination and controls had almost no germination. Our results strongly indicate that fungi are involved in breaking seed dormancy of O. streptacantha, and that the effect of fungi on seeds is species-specific.

  10. In silico analysis of the 16S rRNA gene of endophytic bacteria, isolated from the aerial parts and seeds of important agricultural crops.

    PubMed

    Bredow, C; Azevedo, J L; Pamphile, J A; Mangolin, C A; Rhoden, S A

    2015-08-19

    Because of human population growth, increased food production and alternatives to conventional methods of biocontrol and development of plants such as the use of endophytic bacteria and fungi are required. One of the methods used to study microorganism diversity is sequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, which has several advantages, including universality, size, and availability of databases for comparison. The objective of this study was to analyze endophytic bacterial diversity in agricultural crops using published papers, sequence databases, and phylogenetic analysis. Fourteen papers were selected in which the ribosomal 16S rRNA gene was used to identify endophytic bacteria, in important agricultural crops, such as coffee, sugar cane, beans, corn, soybean, tomatoes, and grapes, located in different geographical regions (America, Europe, and Asia). The corresponding 16S rRNA gene sequences were selected from the NCBI database, aligned using the Mega 5.2 program, and phylogenetic analysis was undertaken. The most common orders present in the analyzed cultures were Bacillales, Enterobacteriales, and Actinomycetales and the most frequently observed genera were Bacillus, Pseudomonas, and Microbacterium. Phylogenetic analysis showed that only approximately 1.56% of the total sequences were not properly grouped, demonstrating reliability in the identification of microorganisms. This study identified the main genera found in endophytic bacterial cultures from plants, providing data for future studies on improving plant agriculture, biotechnology, endophytic bacterium prospecting, and to help understand relationships between endophytic bacteria and their interactions with plants.

  11. When is a terrace not a terrace? The importance of understanding landscape evolution in studies of terraced agriculture.

    PubMed

    Ferro-Vázquez, C; Lang, C; Kaal, J; Stump, D

    2017-01-28

    Before the invention of modern, large-scale engineering projects, terrace systems were rarely built in single phases of construction, but instead developed gradually, and could even be said to have evolved. Understanding this process of landscape change is therefore important in order to fully appreciate how terrace systems were built and functioned, and is also pivotal to understanding how the communities that farmed these systems responded to changes; whether these are changes to the landscape brought about by the farming practices themselves, or changes to social, economic or climatic conditions. Combining archaeological stratigraphy, soil micromorphology and geochemistry, this paper presents a case-study from the historic and extensive terraced landscape at Konso, southwest Ethiopia, and demonstrates - in one important river valley at least - that the original topsoil and much of the subsoil was lost prior to the construction of hillside terraces. Moreover, the study shows that alluvial sediment traps that were built adjacent to rivers relied on widespread hillside soil erosion for their construction, and strongly suggests that these irrigated riverside fields were formerly a higher economic priority than the hillside terraces themselves; a possibility that was not recognised by numerous observational studies of farming in this landscape. Research that takes into account how terrace systems change through time can thus provide important details of whether the function of the system has changed, and can help assess how the legacies of former practices impact current or future cultivation.

  12. Comparison of the Prevalences and Diversities of Listeria Species and Listeria monocytogenes in an Urban and a Rural Agricultural Watershed.

    PubMed

    Stea, Emma C; Purdue, Laura M; Jamieson, Rob C; Yost, Chris K; Truelstrup Hansen, Lisbeth

    2015-06-01

    Foods and related processing environments are commonly contaminated with the pathogenic Listeria monocytogenes. To investigate potential environmental reservoirs of Listeria spp. and L. monocytogenes, surface water and point source pollution samples from an urban and a rural municipal water supply watershed in Nova Scotia, Canada, were examined over 18 months. Presumptive Listeria spp. were cultured from 72 and 35% of rural and urban water samples, respectively, with 24% of the positive samples containing two or three different Listeria spp. The L. innocua (56%) and L. welshimeri (43%) groups were predominant in the rural and urban watersheds, respectively. Analysis by the TaqMan assay showed a significantly (P < 0.05) higher prevalence of L. monocytogenes of 62% versus 17% by the culture-based method. Both methods revealed higher prevalences in the rural watershed and during the fall and winter seasons. Elevated Escherichia coli (≥ 100 CFU/100 ml) levels were not associated with the pathogen regardless of the detection method. Isolation of Listeria spp. were associated with 70 times higher odds of isolating L. monocytogenes (odds ratio = 70; P < 0.001). Serogroup IIa was predominant (67.7%) among the 285 L. monocytogenes isolates, followed by IVb (16.1%), IIb (15.8%), and IIc (0.4%). L. monocytogenes was detected in cow feces and raw sewage but not in septic tank samples. Pulsotyping of representative water (n = 54) and local human (n = 19) isolates suggested genetic similarities among some environmental and human L. monocytogenes isolates. In conclusion, temperate surface waters contain a diverse Listeria species population and could be a potential reservoir for L. monocytogenes, especially in rural agricultural watersheds.

  13. Species of the toxic Pfiesteria complex, and the importance of functional type in data interpretation.

    PubMed

    Burkholder, J M; Glasgow, H B; Deamer-Melia, N J; Springer, J; Parrow, M W; Zhang, C; Cancellieri, P J

    2001-10-01

    We describe the two species of the toxic Pfiesteria complex to date (Pfiesteria piscicida and Pfiesteria shumwayae), their complex life cycles, and the characteristics required for inclusion within this complex. These species resemble P. piscicida Steidinger & Burkholder and also have a) strong attraction to fresh fish tissues and excreta, b) toxic activity stimulated by live fish, and c) production of toxin that can cause fish death and disease. Amoeboid stages were verified in 1992-1997 by our laboratory (various stages from toxic cultures) and that of K. Steidinger and co-workers (filose amoebae in nontoxic cultures), and in 2000 by H. Marshall and co-workers (various stages from toxic cultures), from clonal Pfiesteria spp. cultures, using species-specific polymerase chain reaction-based molecular probes with cross-confirmation by an independent specialist. Data were provided from tests of the hypothesis that Pfiesteriastrains differ in response to fresh fish mucus and excreta, algal prey, and inorganic nutrient (N, P) enrichment, depending on functional type or toxicity status. There are three functional types: TOX-A, in actively toxic, fish-killing mode; TOX-B, temporarily nontoxic, without access to live fish for days to weeks, but capable of toxic activity if fish are added; and NON-IND, noninducible with negligible toxicity in the presence of live fish. NON-IND Pfiesteria attained highest zoospore production on algal prey without or without inorganic nitrogen or inorganic phosphorus enrichment. TOX-B Pfiesteria was intermediate and TOX-A was lowest in zoospore production on algal prey with or without nutrients. TOX-A Pfiesteria spp. showed strong behavioral attraction to fresh fish mucus and excreta in short-term trials, with intermediate attraction of TOX-B zoospores and relatively low attraction of NON-IND cultures when normalized for cell density. The data for these clones indicated a potentially common predatory behavioral response, although differing

  14. Species of the toxic Pfiesteria complex, and the importance of functional type in data interpretation.

    PubMed Central

    Burkholder, J M; Glasgow, H B; Deamer-Melia, N J; Springer, J; Parrow, M W; Zhang, C; Cancellieri, P J

    2001-01-01

    We describe the two species of the toxic Pfiesteria complex to date (Pfiesteria piscicida and Pfiesteria shumwayae), their complex life cycles, and the characteristics required for inclusion within this complex. These species resemble P. piscicida Steidinger & Burkholder and also have a) strong attraction to fresh fish tissues and excreta, b) toxic activity stimulated by live fish, and c) production of toxin that can cause fish death and disease. Amoeboid stages were verified in 1992-1997 by our laboratory (various stages from toxic cultures) and that of K. Steidinger and co-workers (filose amoebae in nontoxic cultures), and in 2000 by H. Marshall and co-workers (various stages from toxic cultures), from clonal Pfiesteria spp. cultures, using species-specific polymerase chain reaction-based molecular probes with cross-confirmation by an independent specialist. Data were provided from tests of the hypothesis that Pfiesteriastrains differ in response to fresh fish mucus and excreta, algal prey, and inorganic nutrient (N, P) enrichment, depending on functional type or toxicity status. There are three functional types: TOX-A, in actively toxic, fish-killing mode; TOX-B, temporarily nontoxic, without access to live fish for days to weeks, but capable of toxic activity if fish are added; and NON-IND, noninducible with negligible toxicity in the presence of live fish. NON-IND Pfiesteria attained highest zoospore production on algal prey without or without inorganic nitrogen or inorganic phosphorus enrichment. TOX-B Pfiesteria was intermediate and TOX-A was lowest in zoospore production on algal prey with or without nutrients. TOX-A Pfiesteria spp. showed strong behavioral attraction to fresh fish mucus and excreta in short-term trials, with intermediate attraction of TOX-B zoospores and relatively low attraction of NON-IND cultures when normalized for cell density. The data for these clones indicated a potentially common predatory behavioral response, although differing

  15. Analysis of Protein Thermostability Enhancing Factors in Industrially Important Thermus Bacteria Species

    PubMed Central

    Kumwenda, Benjamin; Litthauer, Derek; Bishop, Özlem Tastan; Reva, Oleg

    2013-01-01

    Elucidation of evolutionary factors that enhance protein thermostability is a critical problem and was the focus of this work on Thermus species. Pairs of orthologous sequences of T. scotoductus SA-01 and T. thermophilus HB27, with the largest negative minimum folding energy (MFE) as predicted by the UNAFold algorithm, were statistically analyzed. Favored substitutions of amino acids residues and their properties were determined. Substitutions were analyzed in modeled protein structures to determine their locations and contribution to energy differences using PyMOL and FoldX programs respectively. Dominant trends in amino acid substitutions consistent with differences in thermostability between orthologous sequences were observed. T. thermophilus thermophilic proteins showed an increase in non-polar, tiny, and charged amino acids. An abundance of alanine substituted by serine and threonine, as well as arginine substituted by glutamine and lysine was observed in T. thermophilus HB27. Structural comparison showed that stabilizing mutations occurred on surfaces and loops in protein structures. PMID:24023508

  16. Generation of reactive oxygen species via NOXa is important for development and pathogenicity of mycosphaerella graminicola

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The ascomycete fungus Mycosphaerella graminicola is an important pathogen of wheat causing economically significant losses. The primary nutritional mode of this fungus is thought to be hemibiotrophic. This pathogenic lifestyle is associated with an early biotrophic stage of nutrient uptake followed ...

  17. Nutrient composition and nutritional importance of green leaves and wild food resources in an agricultural district, Koutiala, in southern Mali.

    PubMed

    Nordeide, M B; Hatløy, A; Følling, M; Lied, E; Oshaug, A

    1996-11-01

    This paper discusses the nutrient composition and the nutritional importance of green leaves and wild gathered foods in an area with surplus food production in Mali. In this West African country, there is little information about the nutrient composition and the nutritional quality of foods in general, and of wild gathered foods in particular. Food frequency was collected in two cross-sectional surveys. Focus group discussions with women in the area were used to collect information about seasonality, availability and preparation of various foods. Selected food samples were collected for chemical analysis of nutrient composition. The food samples of green leaves (Adansonia digitata, Amaranthus viridis, Tamarindus indica, Allium cepa), seeds and flour (Parkia biglobosa) and fruits (Tamarindus indica) were analysed for water, energy, fat, protein, minerals, amino acids and carotenoids. Availability and use of the foods varied with seasons. In the rainy season, wild gathered foods (e.g. A. digitata) were used as much as fresh cultivated foods (e.g., A. viridis and A. cepa). The wild food resources were more frequently used in rural than in urban areas, with A. digitata as the dominating green leaves. Green leaves were rich in energy, protein and minerals (calcium, iron). Leaves of A. viridis were, in particular, rich in beta-carotene (3290 micrograms/100 g). Chemical score in dried green leaves varied from 47 (A. cepa) to 81 (A. digitata), with lysine as the first limiting amino acid. P. biglobosa fermented seeds, with 35% fat and 37% protein were a complementary source of lysine in the diet. Based on the seasonality, the frequency of use and the nutrient contents of selected green leaves and wild gathered foods in Koutiala district, it is concluded that these traditional and locally produced foods are valuable and important nutrient contributors in the diet both in rural and urban areas, but most important in rural areas.

  18. Living on the edge: populations of two zooplankton species living closer to agricultural fields are more resistant to a common insecticide.

    PubMed

    Bendis, Randall J; Relyea, Rick A

    2014-12-01

    Ecological communities across the globe are exposed to diverse natural and anthropogenic stressors and disturbances that can lead to community-wide impacts. Contaminants are a group of anthropogenic disturbances that are ubiquitous in the environment and can trigger trophic cascades, increased susceptibility to pathogens, reduced biodiversity, and altered ecosystems. In these ecosystems, substantial attention has been given to evolved resistance in targeted pest species, but little attention has been given to the evolution of resistance in nontarget species in nature. For the present study, the authors used laboratory toxicity tests to determine if 2 common, co-occurring species of freshwater zooplankton (Simocephalus vetulus and Daphnia pulex) showed population-level variation in sensitivity to a common insecticide (chlorpyrifos). For both species, it was found that populations living near agricultural fields--a proxy for pesticide use--were more resistant to chlorpyrifos than populations collected from ponds far from agriculture. This finding is consistent with the evolution of resistance to pesticides. To the authors' knowledge, only 1 previous study (using Daphnia magna) has demonstrated this relationship. Collectively, these results suggest that evolved resistance may be common in zooplankton populations located near agriculture. Moreover, because zooplankton play a key role in aquatic food webs, it is expected that population variation in resistance would dramatically alter aquatic food webs, particularly with exposure to low concentrations of insecticides.

  19. Reactive oxygen species are important mediators of taurine release from skeletal muscle cells.

    PubMed

    Ørtenblad, Niels; Young, Jette Feveile; Oksbjerg, Niels; Nielsen, Jacob Holm; Lambert, Ian Henry

    2003-06-01

    The present study illustrates elements of the signal cascades involved in the activation of taurine efflux pathways in myotubes derived from skeletal muscle cells. Exposing primary skeletal muscle cells, loaded with (14)C-taurine, to 1) hypotonic media, 2) the phospholipase A(2) (PLA(2)) activator melittin, 3) anoxia, or 4) lysophosphatidyl choline (LPC) causes an increase in (14)C-taurine release and a concomitant production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). The antioxidants butulated hydroxy toluene and vitamin E inhibit the taurine efflux after cell swelling, anoxia, and addition of LPC. The muscle cells possess two separate taurine efflux pathways, i.e., a swelling- and melittin-induced pathway that requires 5-lipoxygenase activity for activation and a LPC-induced pathway. The two pathways are distinguished by their opposing sensitivity toward the anion channel blocker DIDS and cholesterol. These data provide evidence for PLA(2) products and ROS as key mediators of the signal cascade leading to taurine efflux in muscle.

  20. Colonisation in social species: the importance of breeding experience for dispersal in overcoming information barriers

    PubMed Central

    Payo-Payo, A.; Genovart, M.; Sanz-Aguilar, A.; Greño, J. L.; García-Tarrasón, M.; Bertolero, A.; Piccardo, J.; Oro, D.

    2017-01-01

    Studying colonisation is crucial to understand metapopulations, evolutionary ecology and species resilience to global change. Unfortunately, few empirical data are available because field monitoring that includes empty patches at large spatiotemporal scales is required. We examine the colonisation dynamics of a long-lived seabird over 34 years in the western Mediterranean by comparing population and individual data from both source colony and the newly-formed colonies. Since social information is not available, we hypothesize that colonisation should follow particular dispersal dynamics and personal information must be crucial in decision making. We test if adverse breeding conditions trigger colonisation events, if personal information plays a role in colonisation and if colonisers experience greater fitness. Our results show a temporal mismatch between colonisation events and both density-dependence and perturbations at the source colony, probably because colonisers needed a longer prospecting period to compensate for the lack of public information. Colonisers were mostly experienced individuals gaining higher breeding success in the new colony. Our results highlight the demographic value that experienced individuals can have on metapopulation dynamics of social long-lived organisms. PMID:28211483

  1. A rigorous detection of interstellar CH3NCO: An important missing species in astrochemical networks.

    PubMed

    Cernicharo, J; Kisiel, Z; Tercero, B; Kolesniková, L; Medvedev, I R; López, A; Fortman, S; Winnewisser, M; de Lucia, F C; Alonso, J L; Guillemin, J-C

    2016-03-01

    The recent analysis of the composition of the frozen surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko has revealed a significant number of complex organic molecules. Methyl isocyanate (CH3NCO) is one of the more abundant species detected on the comet surface. In this work we report extensive characterization of its rotational spectrum resulting in a list of 1269 confidently assigned laboratory lines and its detection in space towards the Orion clouds where 399 lines of the molecule have been unambiguously identified. We find that the limited mm-wave laboratory data reported prior to our work require some revision. The abundance of CH3NCO in Orion is only a factor of ten below those of HNCO and CH3CN. Unlike the molecular abundances in the coma of comets, which correlate with those of warm molecular clouds, molecular abundances in the gas phase in Orion are only weakly correlated with those measured on the comet surface. We also compare our abundances with those derived recently for this molecule towards Sgr B2 (Halfen et al. 2015). A more accurate abundance of CH3NCO is provided for this cloud based on our extensive laboratory work.

  2. Colonisation in social species: the importance of breeding experience for dispersal in overcoming information barriers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Payo-Payo, A.; Genovart, M.; Sanz-Aguilar, A.; Greño, J. L.; García-Tarrasón, M.; Bertolero, A.; Piccardo, J.; Oro, D.

    2017-02-01

    Studying colonisation is crucial to understand metapopulations, evolutionary ecology and species resilience to global change. Unfortunately, few empirical data are available because field monitoring that includes empty patches at large spatiotemporal scales is required. We examine the colonisation dynamics of a long-lived seabird over 34 years in the western Mediterranean by comparing population and individual data from both source colony and the newly-formed colonies. Since social information is not available, we hypothesize that colonisation should follow particular dispersal dynamics and personal information must be crucial in decision making. We test if adverse breeding conditions trigger colonisation events, if personal information plays a role in colonisation and if colonisers experience greater fitness. Our results show a temporal mismatch between colonisation events and both density-dependence and perturbations at the source colony, probably because colonisers needed a longer prospecting period to compensate for the lack of public information. Colonisers were mostly experienced individuals gaining higher breeding success in the new colony. Our results highlight the demographic value that experienced individuals can have on metapopulation dynamics of social long-lived organisms.

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

    PubMed

    Leibold, Mathew A; Loeuille, Nicolas

    2015-12-01

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

  4. Nutritional evaluation of commercially important fish species of Lakshadweep archipelago, India.

    PubMed

    Dhaneesh, Kottila Veettil; Noushad, Kunnamgalam Mohammed; Kumar, Thipramalai Thankappan Ajith

    2012-01-01

    Estimation of nutrition profile of edible fishes is essential and thus a bio-monitoring study was carried out to find out the nutritional composition of commonly available fishes in Agatti Island water of Lakshadweep Sea. Protein, carbohydrate, lipid, ash, vitamin, amino acid and fatty acid composition in the muscle of ten edible fish species were studied. Proximate analysis revealed that the protein, carbohydrate, lipid and ash contents were high in Thunnus albacares (13.69%), Parupeneus bifasciatus (6.12%), Hyporhamphus dussumieri (6.97%) and T. albacares (1.65%), respectively. Major amino acids were lysine, leucine and methionine, registering 2.84-4.56%, 2.67-4.18% and 2.64-3.91%, respectively. Fatty acid compositions ranged from 31.63% to 38.97% saturated (SFA), 21.99-26.30% monounsaturated (MUFAs), 30.32-35.11% polyunsaturated acids (PUFAs) and 2.86-7.79% branched fatty acids of the total fatty acids. The ω-3 and ω-6 PUFAs were ranged 13.05-21.14% and 6.88-9.82% of the total fatty acids, respectively. Hence, the fishes of Lakshadweep Sea are highly recommended for consumption, since these fishes are highly enriched with nutrition. The results can be used as a baseline data for comparing the various nutritional profiles of fishes in future.

  5. Wood specific gravity variation among five important hardwood species of Kashmir Himalaya.

    PubMed

    Wani, Bilal Ahmad; Bodha, R H; Khan, Amina

    2014-02-01

    Wood Specific Gravity (SG) is a measure of the amount of structural material a tree species allocates to support and strength. In the present study, specific gravity varied among the five different woods at three different sites from 0.40 in Populus nigra at site III (Shopian) to 0.80 in Parrotiopsis jacquemontiana at site II (Surasyar). Among the three different sites, specific gravity varied from 0.73 to 0.80 in Parroptiosis jacquemontiana; in Robinia pseudoacacia it varied from 0.71 to 0.79; in Salix alba, it varied from 0.42 to 0.48; In Populus nigra it varied from 0.40 to 0.48 and in Juglans regia it varied from 0.59 to 0.66. On the basis of the specific gravity variation patterns these woods were categorized as light (Salix alba, Populus nigra) moderately heavy (Juglans regia) and moderately heavy to heavy (Robinia pseudoacacia, Parrotiopsis jacquemontiana) which predicts their properties like strength, dimensional stability with moisture content change, ability to retain paint, fiber yield per unit volume, suitability for making particleboard and related wood composite materials and suitability as a raw material for making paper.

  6. Electrohydrodynamic effects on two species of insects with economic importance to stored food products

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shayesteh, N.; Barthakur, N. N.

    1996-09-01

    An electrohydrodynamic (EHD) system which generated air ions within a strong electric field was used to study responses of stored-product insects Tribolium confusum (du Val) and Plodia interpunctella (Hübner). Larval mortality of both species generally increased with increased exposure time to ions of either polarity. The larvae and pupae of T. confusum suffered a higher mortality rate than the adults. The insects initially exhibited distinct avoiding motions away from regions of high towards low fluxes of air ions of both polarity. Insects moved vigorously, tumbled, flipped, curled up, and aggregated when the EHD system was turned on. The control insects not exposed to air ions survived and showed a total absence of such behaviour. For bipolar exposures, the insects occupied the neutral zone where the effects were minimal due to cancellation of the fields. Prolonged exposures of more than 20 min produced a quiescent state. EHD-enhanced mass transfer of the liquid component from physical objects established in fluid mechanics was invoked as a possible cause for insect mortality and avoiding behaviour to ions. Body fluid losses increased linearly with time of exposure ( R 2≥0.97) for all biological stages of insect growth. The larvae and pupae of T. confusum lost 12 and 15% of their body fluids, respectively, after 80 min of exposure to negative air ions. Fluid losses of such a magnitude are likely to have contributed to insect fatality.

  7. Long-term dynamics of adaptive evolution in a globally important phytoplankton species to ocean acidification.

    PubMed

    Schlüter, Lothar; Lohbeck, Kai T; Gröger, Joachim P; Riebesell, Ulf; Reusch, Thorsten B H

    2016-07-01

    Marine phytoplankton may adapt to ocean change, such as acidification or warming, because of their large population sizes and short generation times. Long-term adaptation to novel environments is a dynamic process, and phenotypic change can take place thousands of generations after exposure to novel conditions. We conducted a long-term evolution experiment (4 years = 2100 generations), starting with a single clone of the abundant and widespread coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi exposed to three different CO2 levels simulating ocean acidification (OA). Growth rates as a proxy for Darwinian fitness increased only moderately under both levels of OA [+3.4% and +4.8%, respectively, at 1100 and 2200 μatm partial pressure of CO2 (Pco2)] relative to control treatments (ambient CO2, 400 μatm). Long-term adaptation to OA was complex, and initial phenotypic responses of ecologically important traits were later reverted. The biogeochemically important trait of calcification, in particular, that had initially been restored within the first year of evolution was later reduced to levels lower than the performance of nonadapted populations under OA. Calcification was not constitutively lost but returned to control treatment levels when high CO2-adapted isolates were transferred back to present-day control CO2 conditions. Selection under elevated CO2 exacerbated a general decrease of cell sizes under long-term laboratory evolution. Our results show that phytoplankton may evolve complex phenotypic plasticity that can affect biogeochemically important traits, such as calcification. Adaptive evolution may play out over longer time scales (>1 year) in an unforeseen way under future ocean conditions that cannot be predicted from initial adaptation responses.

  8. Long-term dynamics of adaptive evolution in a globally important phytoplankton species to ocean acidification

    PubMed Central

    Schlüter, Lothar; Lohbeck, Kai T.; Gröger, Joachim P.; Riebesell, Ulf; Reusch, Thorsten B. H.

    2016-01-01

    Marine phytoplankton may adapt to ocean change, such as acidification or warming, because of their large population sizes and short generation times. Long-term adaptation to novel environments is a dynamic process, and phenotypic change can take place thousands of generations after exposure to novel conditions. We conducted a long-term evolution experiment (4 years = 2100 generations), starting with a single clone of the abundant and widespread coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi exposed to three different CO2 levels simulating ocean acidification (OA). Growth rates as a proxy for Darwinian fitness increased only moderately under both levels of OA [+3.4% and +4.8%, respectively, at 1100 and 2200 μatm partial pressure of CO2 (Pco2)] relative to control treatments (ambient CO2, 400 μatm). Long-term adaptation to OA was complex, and initial phenotypic responses of ecologically important traits were later reverted. The biogeochemically important trait of calcification, in particular, that had initially been restored within the first year of evolution was later reduced to levels lower than the performance of nonadapted populations under OA. Calcification was not constitutively lost but returned to control treatment levels when high CO2–adapted isolates were transferred back to present-day control CO2 conditions. Selection under elevated CO2 exacerbated a general decrease of cell sizes under long-term laboratory evolution. Our results show that phytoplankton may evolve complex phenotypic plasticity that can affect biogeochemically important traits, such as calcification. Adaptive evolution may play out over longer time scales (>1 year) in an unforeseen way under future ocean conditions that cannot be predicted from initial adaptation responses. PMID:27419227

  9. Taxonomic Revision of Lipoptilocnema (Diptera: Sarcophagidae), With Notes on Natural History and Forensic Importance of Its Species.

    PubMed

    Mulieri, Pablo Ricardo; Mello-Patiu, C A; Aballay, Fernando H

    2017-01-01

    Lipoptilocnema Townsend is a small genus of Neotropical Sarcophaginae with a distinctive genitalic morphology. This genus is revised based on the examination of the type series and large numbers of specimens of the seven previously known species, plus three new ones herein described, one from Argentina (L. delfinado Mulieri and Mello-Patiu, sp. nov.), and two from Brazil (L. savana Mulieri and Mello-Patiu, sp. nov. and L. tibanae Mulieri and Mello-Patiu, sp. nov.). All species are described or redescribed and illustrated. Distribution maps and a key for male identification are provided. The taxonomic position of this genus is reviewed and the interpretation of phallic structures is discussed. Notes on the natural history of Lipoptilocnema species are provided, and their potential importance as PMI indicators is highlighted, including the first record of Lipoptilocnema reared from a dead human body.

  10. Divergences in hydraulic architecture form an important basis for niche differentiation between diploid and polyploid Betula species in NE China.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Wei-Wei; Song, Jia; Wang, Miao; Liu, Yan-Yan; Li, Na; Zhang, Yong-Jiang; Holbrook, N Michele; Hao, Guang-You

    2017-02-13

    Habitat differentiation between polyploid and diploid plants are frequently observed, with polyploids usually occupying more stressed environments. In woody plants, polyploidization can greatly affect wood characteristics but knowledge of its influences on xylem hydraulics is scarce. The four Betula species in NE China, representing two diploids and two polyploids with obvious habitat differentiation, provide an exceptional study system for investigating the impact of polyploidization on environmental adaptation of trees from the point view of xylem hydraulics. To test the hypothesis that changes in hydraulic architecture play an important role in determining their niche differentiation, we measured wood structural traits at both the tissue and pit levels and quantified xylem water transport efficiency and safety in these species. The two polyploids had significantly larger hydraulic weighted mean vessel diameters than the two diploids (45.1 and 45.5 vs 25.9 and 24.5 μm) although the polyploids are occupying more stressed environments. As indicated by more negative water potentials corresponding to 50% loss of stem hydraulic conductivities, the two polyploids exhibited significantly higher resistance to drought-induced embolism than the two diploids (-5.23 and -5.05 vs -3.86 and -3.13 MPa) despite their larger vessel diameters. This seeming discrepancy is reconciled by distinct characteristics favoring greater embolism resistance at the pit level in the two polyploid species. Our results showed clearly that the two polyploid species have remarkably different pit-level anatomical traits favoring greater hydraulic safety than their congeneric diploid species, which have likely contributed to the abundance of polyploid birches in more stressed habitats; however, less porous inter-conduit pits together with a reduced leaf to sapwood area may have compromised their competitiveness under more favorable conditions. Contrasts in hydraulic architecture between diploid and

  11. Immigration Rates in Fragmented Landscapes – Empirical Evidence for the Importance of Habitat Amount for Species Persistence

    PubMed Central

    Püttker, Thomas; Bueno, Adriana A.; dos Santos de Barros, Camila; Sommer, Simone; Pardini, Renata

    2011-01-01

    Background The total amount of native vegetation is an important property of fragmented landscapes and is known to exert a strong influence on population and metapopulation dynamics. As the relationship between habitat loss and local patch and gap characteristics is strongly non-linear, theoretical models predict that immigration rates should decrease dramatically at low levels of remaining native vegetation cover, leading to patch-area effects and the existence of species extinction thresholds across fragmented landscapes with different proportions of remaining native vegetation. Although empirical patterns of species distribution and richness give support to these models, direct measurements of immigration rates across fragmented landscapes are still lacking. Methodology/Principal Findings Using the Brazilian Atlantic forest marsupial Gray Slender Mouse Opossum (Marmosops incanus) as a model species and estimating demographic parameters of populations in patches situated in three landscapes differing in the total amount of remaining forest, we tested the hypotheses that patch-area effects on population density are apparent only at intermediate levels of forest cover, and that immigration rates into forest patches are defined primarily by landscape context surrounding patches. As expected, we observed a positive patch-area effect on M. incanus density only within the landscape with intermediate forest cover. Density was independent of patch size in the most forested landscape and the species was absent from the most deforested landscape. Specifically, the mean estimated numbers of immigrants into small patches were lower in the landscape with intermediate forest cover compared to the most forested landscape. Conclusions/Significance Our results reveal the crucial importance of the total amount of remaining native vegetation for species persistence in fragmented landscapes, and specifically as to the role of variable immigration rates in providing the underlying

  12. Evidence for the importance of litter as a co-substrate for MCPA dissipation in an agricultural soil.

    PubMed

    Saleh, Omar; Pagel, Holger; Enowashu, Esther; Devers, Marion; Martin-Laurent, Fabrice; Streck, Thilo; Kandeler, Ellen; Poll, Christian

    2016-03-01

    Environmental controls of 2-methyl-4-chlorophenoxyacetic acid (MCPA) degradation are poorly understood. We investigated whether microbial MCPA degraders are stimulated by (maize) litter and whether this process depends on concentrations of MCPA and litter. In a microcosm experiment, different amounts of litter (0, 10 and 20 g kg(-1)) were added to soils exposed to three levels of the herbicide (0, 5 and 30 mg kg(-1)). The treated soils were incubated at 20 °C for 6 weeks, and samples were taken after 1, 3 and 6 weeks of incubation. In soils with 5 mg kg(-1) MCPA, about 50 % of the MCPA was dissipated within 1 week of the incubation. Almost complete dissipation of the herbicide had occurred by the end of the incubation with no differences between the three litter amendments. At the higher concentration (30 mg kg(-1)), MCPA endured longer in the soil, with only 31 % of the initial amount being removed at the end of the experiment in the absence of litter. Litter addition greatly increased the dissipation rate with 70 and 80 % of the herbicide being dissipated in the 10 and 20 g kg(-1) litter treatments, respectively. Signs of toxic effects of MCPA on soil bacteria were observed from related phospholipid fatty acid (PLFA) analyses, while fungi showed higher tolerance to the increased MCPA levels. The abundance of bacterial tfdA genes in soil increased with the co-occurrence of litter and high MCPA concentration, indicating the importance of substrate availability in fostering MCPA-degrading bacteria and thereby improving the potential for removal of MCPA in the environment.

  13. A rapid identification guide for larvae of the most common North American container-inhabiting Aedes species of medical importance.

    PubMed

    Farajollahi, Ary; Price, Dana C

    2013-09-01

    Mosquitoes are the single most important taxon of arthropods affecting human health globally, and container-inhabiting Aedes are important vectors of arthropod-borne viruses. Desiccation-resistant eggs of container Aedes have facilitated their invasion into new areas, primarily through transportation via the international trade in used tires. The public health threat from an introduced exotic species into a new area is imminent, and proactive measures are needed to identify significant vectors before onset of epidemic disease. In many cases, vector control is the only means to combat exotic diseases. Accurate identification of vectors is crucial to initiate aggressive control measures; however, many vector control personnel are not properly trained to identify introduced species in new geographic areas. We provide updated geographical ranges and a rapid identification guide with detailed larval photographs of the most common container-inhabiting Aedes in North America. Our key includes 5 native species (Aedes atropalpus, Ae. epactius, Ae. hendersoni, Ae. sierrensis, Ae. triseriatus) and 3 invasive species (Ae. aegypti, Ae. albopictus, Ae. japonicus).

  14. Gimme shelter: The importance of crevices to some fish species inhabiting a deeper-water rocky outcrop in Southern California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Love, M.S.; Schroeder, D.M.; Lenarz, B.; Cochrane, G.R.

    2006-01-01

    Federal law governing fisheries management recognizes the role habitat plays in structuring fish assemblages and achieving sustainable fisheries. However, in most instances it is not known which aspects of habitat are important to the lives of fish species. In 2004, we examined the importance of sheltering sites (crevices) to fishes living along low ledges in deeper waters off Anacapa Island, southern California. We found that patterns of fish-habitat relationships varied among the eight most abundant species. Three species, bocaccio (Sebastes paucispinis), vermilion (S. miniatus), and flag (S. rubrivinctus) rockfishes, had densities one to three orders of magnitude greater in the deep crevice habitat compared to low relief rock or shallow crevice habitats. Density and mean size of the two most abundant fishes, halfbanded (S. semicinctus) and squarespot (S. hopkinsi) rockfishes, generally increased as complexity of rock habitat increased. Not all species had the highest densities in deep crevice habitat. Greenspotted rockfish (S. chlorostictus) and blackeye goby (Rhinogobiops nicholsii) showed no significant difference in density among rock habitats. Pink seaperch (Zalembius rosaceus) were absent in the deep crevice habitat and abundant only in low relief rock habitats. Our study implies that it is not sufficient to distinguish only between soft and hard bottom types when using habitat to guide fisheries management strategies. Finer-scale investigations of fish-habitat relationships, paired with habitat mapping and groundtruthing, aid in the design and positioning of Marine Park Areas (MPAs) and are necessary to facilitate understanding of how a particular MPA may contribute to fisheries management.

  15. Identification of aphid (Hemiptera: Aphididae) species of economic importance in Kenya using DNA barcodes and PCR-RFLP-based approach.

    PubMed

    Kinyanjui, G; Khamis, F M; Mohamed, S; Ombura, L O; Warigia, M; Ekesi, S

    2016-02-01

    Aphids are among pests of economic importance throughout the world. Together with transmitting plant viruses, aphids are capable of inflicting severe crop production losses. They also excrete honeydew that favours the growth of sooty mold which reduces the quality of vegetables and fruits and hence their market values. Rapid and accurate identification of aphids to the species level is a critical component in effective pest management and plant quarantine systems. Even though morphological taxonomy has made a tremendous impact on species-level identifications, polymorphism, morphological plasticity and immature stages are among the many challenges to accurate identification. In addition, their small size, presence of cryptic species and damaged specimens dictate the need for a strategy that will ensure timely and accurate identification. In this study, polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP)-based on mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I gene and DNA barcoding were applied to identify different aphid species collected from different agro-ecological zones of Kenya. Three restriction enzymes RsaI, AluI and Hinf1 produced patterns that allowed unambiguous identification of the species except Aphis craccivora and Aphis fabae. Analyses of the barcode region indicated intraspecific and interspecific sequence divergences of 0.08 and 6.63%, respectively. DNA barcoding identified all species, including the morphologically indistinguishable A. craccivora and A. fabae and separated two subspecies of A. fabae. Based on these results, both PCR-RFLPs and DNA barcoding could provide quick and accurate tools for identification of aphid species within Aphididae subsequently aiding in effective pest management programmes and enhance plant quarantine systems.

  16. DNA-based identification of forensically important species of Sarcophagidae (Insecta: Diptera) from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Napoleão, K S; Mello-Patiu, C A; Oliveira-Costa, J; Takiya, D M; Silva, R; Moura-Neto, R S

    2016-05-06

    Sarcophagidae, or flesh flies, are of great importance in forensic entomology, but their effective application requires precise taxonomic identification, which relies almost exclusively on characteristics of the male genitalia. Given that female flies and larvae are most abundant in animal carcasses or on corpses, precise morphological identification can be difficult; therefore, DNA sequencing can be an additional tool for use in taxonomic identification. This paper analyzes part of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) gene from three Sarcophagidae species of forensic importance in the City of Rio de Janeiro: Oxysarcodexia fluminensis, Peckia chrysostoma, and Peckia intermutans. COI fragments of 400 bp from 36 specimens of these three species were sequenced. No intraspecific differences were found among specimens of O. fluminensis, but P. chrysostoma and P. intermutans each had two haplotypes, ranging from 0 to 0.7%. The interspecific divergence was 8.5-11.6%, corroborating previously reported findings.

  17. Enhanced longevity by ibuprofen, conserved in multiple species, occurs in yeast through inhibition of tryptophan import.

    PubMed

    He, Chong; Tsuchiyama, Scott K; Nguyen, Quynh T; Plyusnina, Ekaterina N; Terrill, Samuel R; Sahibzada, Sarah; Patel, Bhumil; Faulkner, Alena R; Shaposhnikov, Mikhail V; Tian, Ruilin; Tsuchiya, Mitsuhiro; Kaeberlein, Matt; Moskalev, Alexey A; Kennedy, Brian K; Polymenis, Michael

    2014-12-01

    The common non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug ibuprofen has been associated with a reduced risk of some age-related pathologies. However, a general pro-longevity role for ibuprofen and its mechanistic basis remains unclear. Here we show that ibuprofen increased the lifespan of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Caenorhabditis elegans and Drosophila melanogaster, indicative of conserved eukaryotic longevity effects. Studies in yeast indicate that ibuprofen destabilizes the Tat2p permease and inhibits tryptophan uptake. Loss of Tat2p increased replicative lifespan (RLS), but ibuprofen did not increase RLS when Tat2p was stabilized or in an already long-lived strain background impaired for aromatic amino acid uptake. Concomitant with lifespan extension, ibuprofen moderately reduced cell size at birth, leading to a delay in the G1 phase of the cell cycle. Similar changes in cell cycle progression were evident in a large dataset of replicatively long-lived yeast deletion strains. These results point to fundamental cell cycle signatures linked with longevity, implicate aromatic amino acid import in aging and identify a largely safe drug that extends lifespan across different kingdoms of life.

  18. Comparative antigenic studies of species of Basidiobolus and other medically important fungi.

    PubMed Central

    Yangco, B G; Nettlow, A; Okafor, J I; Park, J; Te Strake, D

    1986-01-01

    An immunodiffusion technique was used to evaluate the antigenic relationship of various pathogenic and saprobic Basidiobolus spp., Conidiobolus spp., isolates of the order Mucorales, and several other medically important nonzygomycetous fungi. The antiserum to Basidiobolus haptosporus shared two lines of identity, designated inner (N) and outer (Y), when tested against exoantigens of known strains of B. haptosporus and Basidiobolus ranarum as well as exoantigens of a human Nigerian isolate and several wild isolates tentatively identified in B. ranarum. Both bands were heat stable at 56 degrees C for 30 min. Exoantigens of strains of Basidiobolus meristosporus, Basidiobolus microsporus, Conidiobolus incongruus, Conidiobolus coronatus, and other wild isolates of Basidiobolus spp. tested formed only the N immunoprecipitin band. Exoantigens of 10 isolates from other taxa did not produce any cross-reactive precipitin line. B. meristosporus antiserum that was tested against exoantigens of Basidiobolus spp. and of Conidiobolus spp. developed only an N band without a Y band. These data suggest that B. haptosporus and B. ranarum are antigenically similar to each other and distinct from B. meristosporus. Basidiobolus spp. and Conidiobolus spp. share a common N immunoprecipitin band, which implies a taxonomic relationship between these two genera. The absence of lines of identity between Basidiobolus spp. and other fungi tested suggests that, antigenically, Basidiobolus is a distinct genus. Images PMID:3084553

  19. Agricultural Biodiversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Postance, Jim

    1998-01-01

    The extinction of farm animals and crops is rarely brought up during discussions of endangered species and biodiversity; however, the loss of diversity in crops and livestock threatens the sustainability of agriculture. Presents three activities: (1) "The Colors of Diversity"; (2) "Biodiversity among Animals"; and (3) "Heirloom Plants." Discusses…

  20. Trap capture of three economically important fruit fly species (Diptera: Tephritidae): evaluation of a solid formulation containing multiple male lures in a Hawaiian coffee field.

    PubMed

    Shelly, Todd; Nishimoto, Jon; Kurashima, Rick

    2012-08-01

    Invasive fruit flies (Diptera: Tephritidae) pose a global threat to agriculture through direct damage to food crops and the accompanying trade restrictions that often result. Early detection is vital to controlling fruit flies, because it increases the probability of limiting the growth and spread of the invasive population and thus may greatly reduce the monetary costs required for eradication or suppression. Male-specific lures are an important component of fruit fly detection, and three such lures are used widely: trimedlure (TML), cue lure (CL), and methyl eugenol (ME), attractive to Mediterranean fruit fly, Ceratitis capitata (Wiedemann); melon fly, Bactrocera cucurbitae (Coquillett); and oriental fruit fly, Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel), respectively. In California, Florida, and Texas, the two Bactrocera lures are applied to separate species-specific traps as liquids (with a small amount of the insecticide naled added), whereas TML is delivered as a solid plug in another set of traps. Thus, the detection protocol involves considerable handling time as well as potential contact with a pesticide. The purpose of this study was to compare trap capture between liquid male lures and "trilure" wafers that contain TML, ME, raspberry ketone (RK, the hydroxy equivalent of CL), and the toxicant DDVP embedded within a solid matrix. Field studies were conducted in a Hawaiian coffee (Coffea arabica L.) field where the three aforementioned species co-occur, showed that the wafer captured at least as many flies as the liquid baits for all three species. This same result was obtained in comparisons using both fresh and aged (6-wk) baits. Moreover, the wafers performed as well as the single-lure traps in an ancillary experiment in which TML plugs were substituted for liquid TML. Additional experiments demonstrated explicitly that the presence of ME and RK had no effect on captures of C. capitata males and similarly that the presence of TML had no effect on the capture of B

  1. The importance of comparative phylogeography in diagnosing introduced species: a lesson from the seal salamander, Desmognathus monticola

    PubMed Central

    Bonett, Ronald M; Kozak, Kenneth H; Vieites, David R; Bare, Alison; Wooten, Jessica A; Trauth, Stanley E

    2007-01-01

    a major undertaking. Our study demonstrates the importance of considering comparative phylogeographic information for locating critical haplotypes when distinguishing native from introduced species. PMID:17825102

  2. Multi-Season Regional Analysis of Multi-Species Occupancy: Implications for Bird Conservation in Agricultural Lands in East-Central Argentina

    PubMed Central

    Goijman, Andrea Paula; Conroy, Michael. J.; Bernardos, Jaime Nicolás; Zaccagnini, María Elena

    2015-01-01

    Rapid expansion and intensification of agriculture create challenges for the conservation of biodiversity and associated ecosystem services. In Argentina, the total row crop planted area has increased in recent decades with the expansion of soybean cultivation, homogenizing the landscape. In 2003 we started the first long-term, large-scale bird monitoring program in agroecosystems of central Argentina, in portions of the Pampas and Espinal ecoregions. Using data from this program, we evaluated the effect of land use and cover extent on birds between 2003-2012, accounting for imperfect detection probabilities using a Bayesian hierarchical, multi-species and multi-season occupancy model. We tested predictions that species diversity is positively related to habitat heterogeneity, which in intensified agroecosystems is thought to be mediated by food availability; thus the extent of land use and cover is predicted to affect foraging guilds differently. We also infer about ecosystem services provisioning and inform management recommendations for conservation of birds. Overall our results support the predictions. Although many species within each guild responded differently to land use and native forest cover, we identified generalities for most trophic guilds. For example, granivorous gleaners, ground insectivores and omnivores responded negatively to high proportions of soybean, while insectivore gleaners and aerial foragers seemed more tolerant. Habitat heterogeneity would likely benefit most species in an intensified agroecosystem, and can be achieved with a diversity of crops, pastures, and natural areas within the landscape. Although most studied species are insectivores, potentially beneficial for pest control, some guilds such as ground insectivores are poorly represented, suggesting that agricultural intensification reduces ecological functions, which may be recovered through management. Continuation of the bird monitoring program will allow us to continue to

  3. Multi-Season Regional Analysis of Multi-Species Occupancy: Implications for Bird Conservation in Agricultural Lands in East-Central Argentina.

    PubMed

    Goijman, Andrea Paula; Conroy, Michael J; Bernardos, Jaime Nicolás; Zaccagnini, María Elena

    2015-01-01

    Rapid expansion and intensification of agriculture create challenges for the conservation of biodiversity and associated ecosystem services. In Argentina, the total row crop planted area has increased in recent decades with the expansion of soybean cultivation, homogenizing the landscape. In 2003 we started the first long-term, large-scale bird monitoring program in agroecosystems of central Argentina, in portions of the Pampas and Espinal ecoregions. Using data from this program, we evaluated the effect of land use and cover extent on birds between 2003-2012, accounting for imperfect detection probabilities using a Bayesian hierarchical, multi-species and multi-season occupancy model. We tested predictions that species diversity is positively related to habitat heterogeneity, which in intensified agroecosystems is thought to be mediated by food availability; thus the extent of land use and cover is predicted to affect foraging guilds differently. We also infer about ecosystem services provisioning and inform management recommendations for conservation of birds. Overall our results support the predictions. Although many species within each guild responded differently to land use and native forest cover, we identified generalities for most trophic guilds. For example, granivorous gleaners, ground insectivores and omnivores responded negatively to high proportions of soybean, while insectivore gleaners and aerial foragers seemed more tolerant. Habitat heterogeneity would likely benefit most species in an intensified agroecosystem, and can be achieved with a diversity of crops, pastures, and natural areas within the landscape. Although most studied species are insectivores, potentially beneficial for pest control, some guilds such as ground insectivores are poorly represented, suggesting that agricultural intensification reduces ecological functions, which may be recovered through management. Continuation of the bird monitoring program will allow us to continue to

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

    PubMed

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

    2015-11-14

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

  5. Species composition of forensically important blow flies (Diptera: Calliphoridae) and flesh flies (Diptera: Sarcophagidae) through space and time.

    PubMed

    Fremdt, Heike; Amendt, Jens

    2014-03-01

    Weekly monitoring of forensically important flight-active blow flies (Diptera: Calliphoridae) and flesh flies (Diptera: Sarcophagidae) was performed using small baited traps. Sampling took place in two rural, one suburban and two urban habitats in and around Frankfurt (Main), Germany, lasting two years and eight months. Highest values for species richness and Chao-Shen entropy estimator for Shannon's index in both families were found at the urban sites, peaking during summer. Space-time interaction was tested and found to be significant, demonstrating the value of a statistical approach recently developed for community surveys in ecology. K-means partitioning and analysis of indicator species gave significant temporal and habitat associations of particular taxa. Calliphora vicina was an indicator species for lower temperatures without being associated with a particular habitat. Lucilia sericata was an indicator for urban sites, whereas Lucilia ampullacea and Lucilia caesar were indicators for rural sites, supplemented by the less frequent species Calliphora vomitoria. Sarcophagidae were observed during a clearly shorter period of year. Sarcophaga subvicina+Sarcophaga variegata was found to be an indicator for urban habitats during summer as well as Sarcophaga albiceps for rural habitats. A significant association of Sarcophaga caerulescens to rural habitats as well as one of Sarcophaga similis to urban habitats was observed.

  6. The impact of past introductions on an iconic and economically important species, the red deer of Scotland.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Espona, Sílvia; Hall, Richard J; Pérez-Barbería, F Javier; Glass, Belinda C; Ward, Jamie F; Pemberton, Josephine M

    2013-01-01

    The red deer (Cervus elaphus) is an iconic species in Scotland and, due to its value as a game species, an important element of the Scottish rural economy. The native status of this species is sometimes questioned because of many recorded introductions of nonnative deer in the past that were an attempt to improve trophy size. In this study, we assessed the impact of past introductions on the genetic makeup of Scottish red deer by genotyping at 15 microsatellite loci a large number of samples (n = 1152), including mainland and island Scottish red deer and individuals from several putative external source populations used in introductions to improve trophy size. Population structure and introgression assessment analyses revealed that the impact of introductions was weak in Highland red deer populations but more prominent on the islands, especially on those where current red deer populations are mostly or entirely derived from introductions (Harris & Lewis, Arran, and Rum). Frequent imports of Central-Eastern European red deer into English deer parks were reflected in the higher genetic introgression values found in some of the individuals collected in parks.

  7. Commercially important species associated with horse mussel (Modiolus modiolus) biogenic reefs: A priority habitat for nature conservation and fisheries benefits.

    PubMed

    Kent, Flora E A; Mair, James M; Newton, Jason; Lindenbaum, Charles; Porter, Joanne S; Sanderson, William G

    2017-02-17

    Horse mussel reefs (Modiolus modiolus) are biodiversity hotspots afforded protection by Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) in the NE Atlantic. In this study, horse mussel reefs, cobble habitats and sandy habitats were assessed using underwater visual census and drop-down video techniques in three UK regions. Megafauna were enumerated, differences in community composition and individual species abundances were analysed. Samples of conspicuous megafauna were also collected from horse mussel reefs in Orkney for stable isotope analysis. Communities of conspicuous megafauna were different between horse mussel habitats and other habitats throughout their range. Three commercially important species: whelks (Buccinum undatum), queen scallops (Aequipecten opercularis) and spider crabs (Maja brachydactyla) were significantly more abundant (by as much as 20 times) on horse mussel reefs than elsewhere. Isotopic analysis provided insights into their trophic relationship with the horse mussel reef. Protection of M. modiolus habitat can achieve biodiversity conservation objectives whilst benefiting fisheries also.

  8. A probabilistic approach for estimating the spatial extent of pesticide agricultural use sites and potential co-occurrence with listed species for use in ecological risk assessments.

    PubMed

    Budreski, Katherine; Winchell, Michael; Padilla, Lauren; Bang, JiSu; Brain, Richard A

    2016-04-01

    A crop footprint refers to the estimated spatial extent of growing areas for a specific crop, and is commonly used to represent the potential "use site" footprint for a pesticide labeled for use on that crop. A methodology for developing probabilistic crop footprints to estimate the likelihood of pesticide use and the potential co-occurrence of pesticide use and listed species locations was tested at the national scale and compared to alternative methods. The probabilistic aspect of the approach accounts for annual crop rotations and the uncertainty in remotely sensed crop and land cover data sets. The crop footprints used historically are derived exclusively from the National Land Cover Database (NLCD) Cultivated Crops and/or Pasture/Hay classes. This approach broadly aggregates agriculture into 2 classes, which grossly overestimates the spatial extent of individual crops that are labeled for pesticide use. The approach also does not use all the available crop data, represents a single point in time, and does not account for the uncertainty in land cover data set classifications. The probabilistic crop footprint approach described herein incorporates best available information at the time of analysis from the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) Cropland Data Layer (CDL) for 5 y (2008-2012 at the time of analysis), the 2006 NLCD, the 2007 NASS Census of Agriculture, and 5 y of NASS Quick Stats (2008-2012). The approach accounts for misclassification of crop classes in the CDL by incorporating accuracy assessment information by state, year, and crop. The NLCD provides additional information to improve the CDL crop probability through an adjustment based on the NLCD accuracy assessment data using the principles of Bayes' Theorem. Finally, crop probabilities are scaled at the state level by comparing against NASS surveys (Census of Agriculture and Quick Stats) of reported planted acres by crop. In an example application of the new method, the probabilistic

  9. Assessing the importance of four sandfly species (Diptera: Psychodidae) as vectors of Leishmania mexicana in Campeche, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Pech-May, A; Peraza-Herrera, G; Moo-Llanes, D A; Escobedo-Ortegón, J; Berzunza-Cruz, M; Becker-Fauser, I; Montes DE Oca-Aguilar, A C; Rebollar-Téllez, E A

    2016-09-01

    Localized cutaneous leishmaniasis represents a public health problem in many areas of Mexico, especially in the Yucatan Peninsula. An understanding of vector ecology and bionomics is of great importance in evaluations of the transmission dynamics of Leishmania parasites. A field study was conducted in the county of Calakmul, state of Campeche, during the period from November 2006 to March 2007. Phlebotomine sandfly vectors were sampled using Centers for Disease Control light traps, baited Disney traps and Shannon traps. A total of 3374 specimens were captured in the two villages of Once de Mayo (93.8%) and Arroyo Negro (6.1%). In Once de Mayo, the most abundant species were Psathyromyia shannoni, Lutzomyia cruciata, Bichromomyia olmeca olmeca and Psychodopygus panamensis (all: Diptera: Psychodidae). The Shannon trap was by far the most efficient method of collection. The infection rate, as determined by Leishmania mexicana-specific polymerase chain reaction, was 0.3% in Once de Mayo and infected sandflies included Psy. panamensis, B. o. olmeca and Psa. shannoni. There were significant differences in human biting rates across sandfly species and month of sampling. Ecological niche modelling analyses showed an overall overlap of 39.1% for the four species in the whole state of Campeche. In addition, the finding of nine vector-reservoir pairs indicates a potential interaction. The roles of the various sandfly vectors in Calakmul are discussed.

  10. Life-history traits and effective population size in species with overlapping generations revisited: the importance of adult mortality.

    PubMed

    Waples, R S

    2016-10-01

    The relationship between life-history traits and the key eco-evolutionary parameters effective population size (Ne) and Ne/N is revisited for iteroparous species with overlapping generations, with a focus on the annual rate of adult mortality (d). Analytical methods based on populations with arbitrarily long adult lifespans are used to evaluate the influence of d on Ne, Ne/N and the factors that determine these parameters: adult abundance (N), generation length (T), age at maturity (α), the ratio of variance to mean reproductive success in one season by individuals of the same age (φ) and lifetime variance in reproductive success of individuals in a cohort (Vk•). Although the resulting estimators of N, T and Vk• are upwardly biased for species with short adult lifespans, the estimate of Ne/N is largely unbiased because biases in T are compensated for by biases in Vk• and N. For the first time, the contrasting effects of T and Vk• on Ne and Ne/N are jointly considered with respect to d and φ. A simple function of d and α based on the assumption of constant vital rates is shown to be a robust predictor (R(2)=0.78) of Ne/N in an empirical data set of life tables for 63 animal and plant species with diverse life histories. Results presented here should provide important context for interpreting the surge of genetically based estimates of Ne that has been fueled by the genomics revolution.

  11. IncP-1ε Plasmids are Important Vectors of Antibiotic Resistance Genes in Agricultural Systems: Diversification Driven by Class 1 Integron Gene Cassettes

    PubMed Central

    Heuer, Holger; Binh, Chu T. T.; Jechalke, Sven; Kopmann, Christoph; Zimmerling, Ute; Krögerrecklenfort, Ellen; Ledger, Thomas; González, Bernardo; Top, Eva; Smalla, Kornelia

    2011-01-01

    The role of broad-host range IncP-1ε plasmids in the dissemination of antibiotic resistance in agricultural systems has not yet been investigated. These plasmids were detected in total DNA from all of 16 manure samples and in arable soil based on a novel 5′-nuclease assay for real-time PCR. A correlation between IncP-1ε plasmid abundance and antibiotic usage was revealed. In a soil microcosm experiment the abundance of IncP-1ε plasmids was significantly increased even 127 days after application of manure containing the antibiotic compound sulfadiazine, compared to soil receiving only manure, only sulfadiazine, or water. Fifty IncP-1ε plasmids that were captured in E. coli CV601gfp from bacterial communities of manure and arable soil were characterized by PCR and hybridization. All plasmids carried class 1 integrons with highly varying sizes of the gene cassette region and the sul1 gene. Three IncP-1ε plasmids captured from soil bacteria and one from manure were completely sequenced. The backbones were nearly identical to that of the previously described IncP-1ε plasmid pKJK5. The plasmids differed mainly in the composition of a Tn402-like transposon carrying a class 1 integron with varying gene cassettes, IS1326, and in three of the plasmids the tetracycline resistance transposon Tn1721 with various truncations. Diverse Beta- and Gammaproteobacteria were revealed as hosts of one of the IncP-1ε plasmids in soil microcosms. Our data suggest that IncP-1ε plasmids are important vectors for horizontal transfer of antibiotic resistance in agricultural systems. PMID:22279444

  12. Diatoms can be an important exception to temperature-size rules at species and community levels of organization.

    PubMed

    Adams, Georgina L; Pichler, Doris E; Cox, Eileen J; O'Gorman, Eoin J; Seeney, Alex; Woodward, Guy; Reuman, Daniel C

    2013-11-01

    Climate warming has been linked to an apparent general decrease in body sizes of ectotherms, both across and within taxa, especially in aquatic systems. Smaller body size in warmer geographical regions has also been widely observed. Since body size is a fundamental determinant of many biological attributes, climate-warming-related changes in size could ripple across multiple levels of ecological organization. Some recent studies have questioned the ubiquity of temperature-size rules, however, and certain widespread and abundant taxa, such as diatoms, may be important exceptions. We tested the hypothesis that diatoms are smaller at warmer temperatures using a system of geothermally heated streams. There was no consistent relationship between size and temperature at either the population or community level. These field data provide important counterexamples to both James' and Bergmann's temperature-size rules, respectively, undermining the widely held assumption that warming favours the small. This study provides compelling new evidence that diatoms are an important exception to temperature-size rules for three reasons: (i) we use many more species than prior work; (ii) we examine both community and species levels of organization simultaneously; (iii) we work in a natural system with a wide temperature gradient but minimal variation in other factors, to achieve robust tests of hypotheses without relying on laboratory setups, which have limited realism. In addition, we show that interspecific effects were a bigger contributor to whole-community size differences, and are probably more ecologically important than more commonly studied intraspecific effects. These findings highlight the need for multispecies approaches in future studies of climate warming and body size.

  13. Diatoms can be an important exception to temperature–size rules at species and community levels of organization

    PubMed Central

    Adams, Georgina L; Pichler, Doris E; Cox, Eileen J; O'Gorman, Eoin J; Seeney, Alex; Woodward, Guy; Reuman, Daniel C

    2013-01-01

    Climate warming has been linked to an apparent general decrease in body sizes of ectotherms, both across and within taxa, especially in aquatic systems. Smaller body size in warmer geographical regions has also been widely observed. Since body size is a fundamental determinant of many biological attributes, climate-warming-related changes in size could ripple across multiple levels of ecological organization. Some recent studies have questioned the ubiquity of temperature–size rules, however, and certain widespread and abundant taxa, such as diatoms, may be important exceptions. We tested the hypothesis that diatoms are smaller at warmer temperatures using a system of geothermally heated streams. There was no consistent relationship between size and temperature at either the population or community level. These field data provide important counterexamples to both James’ and Bergmann's temperature–size rules, respectively, undermining the widely held assumption that warming favours the small. This study provides compelling new evidence that diatoms are an important exception to temperature–size rules for three reasons: (i) we use many more species than prior work; (ii) we examine both community and species levels of organization simultaneously; (iii) we work in a natural system with a wide temperature gradient but minimal variation in other factors, to achieve robust tests of hypotheses without relying on laboratory setups, which have limited realism. In addition, we show that interspecific effects were a bigger contributor to whole-community size differences, and are probably more ecologically important than more commonly studied intraspecific effects. These findings highlight the need for multispecies approaches in future studies of climate warming and body size. PMID:23749600

  14. Fertility, segregation at a herbicide-resistance locus, and genome structure in BC hybrids from two important weedy Amaranthus species.

    PubMed

    Trucco, F; Tatum, T; Rayburn, A L; Tranel, P J

    2005-08-01

    Field studies have established high potential for hybridization between two important and often coexisting weedy species, Amaranthus hybridus and Amaranthus tuberculatus. Prezygotic reproductive barriers between these species are believed to be limited to pollen competition and availability. A greenhouse study showed that a herbicide-resistance gene (ALS) from A. hybridus could be introgressed into an advanced A. tuberculatus background (BC2). However, evidence is lacking in support of such transfer in nature. Postzygotic reproductive barriers may minimize, if not preclude, natural introgression. Indeed, A. hybridus xA. tuberculatus hybrids are characterized by reduced fertility and even floral neuterism. The purpose of this study was to assess hybrid fertility in the BC1 generation and its relationship with genome structure and segregation at ALS. Fertility was assessed by measuring seed output and by pollen evaluation, and segregation at ALS was determined via a molecular marker system. The two parental species have the same ploidy (2n = 32) but differ in DNA content (2C) values, with A. tuberculatus chromosomes being on average 29% greater than those of A. hybridus. Given that most (98%) BC(1)s were homoploid, 2C values were used as indicators of relative genomic constitution. Fertility in the BC1 generation was greater than that of F1s, and 3% of BC1s had seed output similar to that of the parental species. Fertility in the BC1 did not correlate (in a strict way) with reconstitution of parental genomes. Hybrid sterility appeared to be controlled by relatively few loci. Heterozygosity at ALS was negatively correlated with fertility. Also, the A. tuberculatus ALS allele was not observed in the A. hybridus sexual condition, monoecism. Linkage of ALS to a locus associated (directly or via epistasis) with hybrid sterility may explain the fertility penalty observed with ALS introgression. Moreover, this linkage might explain why sequenced herbicide-resistance ALS

  15. A design-constraint trade-off underpins the diversity in ecologically important traits in species Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Phan, Katherine; Ferenci, Thomas

    2013-10-01

    Bacterial species are internally diverse in genomic and multi-locus gene comparisons. The ecological causes of phenotypic and genotypic diversity within species are far less well understood. Here, we focus on the competitive fitness for growth on nutrients within Escherichia coli, an internally rich species. Competition experiments in nutrient-limited chemostats revealed that members of the ECOR collection exhibited a wide continuum of competitive abilities, with some fitter and some less fit than the lab strain MG1655. We observed an inverse relationship between competitiveness and the resistance of strains to detergent and antibiotic, consistent with the notion that membrane permeability and competitive fitness are linked by a trade-off between self-preservation and nutritional competence (SPANC); high permeability has a postulated cost in antibacterial sensitivity whereas a low permeability has a cost in nutrient affinity. Isolates moved along the markedly nonlinear trade-off curve by mutational adaptation; an ECOR strain sensitive to antibacterials and a good competitor was easily converted by mutation into a mutant with higher resistance but poorer competition in the presence of low antibiotic concentrations. Conversely, a resistant ECOR strain changed into a better competitor after a short period of selection under nutrient limitation. In both directions, mutations can affect porin proteins and outer membrane permeability, as indicated by protein analysis, gene sequencing and an independent assay of outer membrane permeability. The extensive, species-wide diversity of E. coli in ecologically important traits can thus be explained as an evolutionary consequence of a SPANC trade-off driven by antagonistic pleiotropy.

  16. Relative importance of habitat filtering and limiting similarity on species assemblages of alpine and subalpine plant communities.

    PubMed

    Takahashi, Koichi; Tanaka, Saeka

    2016-11-01

    This study examined how habitat filtering and limiting similarity affect species assemblages of alpine and subalpine plant communities along a slope gradient on Mt. Norikura in central Japan. Plant traits (plant height, individual leaf area, specific leaf area (SLA), leaf linearity, leaf nitrogen and chlorophyll concentrations) and abiotic environmental factors (elevation, slope inclination, ground surface texture, soil water, soil pH, soil nutrient concentrations of NH4-N and NO3-N) were examined. The metrics of variance, range, kurtosis and the standard deviation of neighbor distance divided by the range of traits present (SDNDr) were calculated for each plant trait to measure trait distribution patterns. Limiting similarity was detected only for chlorophyll concentration. By contrast, habitat filtering was detected for individual leaf area, SLA, leaf linearity, chlorophyll concentration. Abiotic environmental factors were summarized by the principal component analysis (PCA). The first PCA axis positively correlated with elevation and soil pH, and negatively correlated with sand cover, soil water, NH4-N and NO3-N concentrations. High values of the first PCA axis represent the wind-exposed upper slope with lower soil moisture and nutrient availabilities. Plant traits changed along the first PCA axis. Leaf area, SLA and chlorophyll concentration decreased, and leaf linearity increased with the first PCA axis. This study showed that the species assemblage of alpine and subalpine plants was determined mainly by habitat filtering, indicating that abiotic environmental factors are more important for species assemblage than interspecific competition. Therefore, only species adapting to abiotic environments can distribute to these environments.

  17. Ultramorphological characteristics of mature larvae of Nitidula carnaria (Schaller 1783) (Coleoptera: Nitidulidae), a beetle species of forensic importance.

    PubMed

    Ortloff, Alexander; Zanetti, Noelia; Centeno, Néstor; Silva, Ricardo; Bustamante, Felipe; Olave, Alvaro

    2014-06-01

    Beetles of the genus Nitidula Fabricius are forensically important, and their adults and larvae have been found associated with human corpses and animal carcasses in many places of the world. The external morphology of the larvae of Nitidula carnaria (Schaller 1783) was examined by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) to provide a description enabling identification of this forensically important species. The ultrastructure of the head was examined, antennae, mandibles, epipharynx, maxillary and labial palpi, spiracles, thorax, legs, and abdominal segments (especially segments 9 and 10); the tegument was also emphasised in this examination. Several types of sensilla were observed on the maxillary and labial palpi, including sensilla basiconica, sensilla styloconica, and perhaps a different type of sensilla digitiformia. In abdominal segment 10, a sensilla campaniformia was observed. Two types of plates were noticed in the abdominal tegument. The characteristics described here can be used to identify this species. No other study of the ultrastructure of Nitidulidae larvae is available for comparison. This is the first report of N. carnaria in carcasses in Chile.

  18. Entomophagy and space agriculture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Katayama, N.; Ishikawa, Y.; Takaoki, M.; Yamashita, M.; Nakayama, S.; Kiguchi, K.; Kok, R.; Wada, H.; Mitsuhashi, J.; Space Agriculture Task Force, J.

    Supplying food for human occupants remains one of the primary issues in engineering space habitation Evidently for long-term occupation on a distant planet it is necessary to start agriculture on site Historically humans have consumed a variety of animals and it is required to fill our nutritional need when they live in space Among many candidate group and species of animal to breed in space agriculture insects are of great interest since they have a number of advantages over mammals and other vertebrates or invertebrates About 70-75 of animal species is insects and they play an important role in materials recycle loop of terrestrial biosphere at their various niche For space agriculture we propose several insect species such as the silkworm Bombyx mori the drugstore beetle Stegobium paniceum and the termite Macrotermes subhyalinus Among many advantages these insects do not compete with human in terms of food resources but convert inedible biomass or waste into an edible food source for human The silkworm has been domesticated since 5 000 years ago in China Silk moth has lost capability of flying after its domestication history This feature is advantageous in control of their breeding Silkworm larvae eat specifically mulberry leaves and metamorphose in their cocoon Silk fiber obtained from cocoon can be used to manufacture textile Farming system of the drugstore beetle has been well established Both the drugstore beetle and the termite are capable to convert cellulose or other inedible biomass

  19. The effect of nitrogen and glyphosate on survival and colonisation of perennial grass species in an agro-ecosystem: does the relative importance of survival decrease with competitive ability?

    PubMed

    Damgaard, Christian; Strandberg, Beate; Mathiassen, Solvejg K; Kudsk, Per

    2013-01-01

    The ecological success of a plant species is typically described by the observed change in plant abundance or cover, but in order to more fully understand the fundamental plant ecological processes, it is necessary to inspect the underlying processes of survival and colonization and how they are affected by environmental conditions. A general ecological hypothesis on the effect of environmental gradients on demographic parameters is proposed and tested. The hypothesis is that decreasing fitness or competitive ability along an environmental gradient is associated with an increasing importance of survival for regulating the abundance of the species. The tested hypothesis is related to both the stress gradient hypothesis and whether the importance of competition increases along productivity gradients. The combined effect of nitrogen and glyphosate on the survival and colonization probability of two perennial grass species, Festuca ovina and Agrostis capillaris, which are known to differ in their responses to both glyphosate and nitrogen treatments, is calculated using pin-point cover data in permanent frames. We found that the relative importance of survival increased with the level of glyphosate for the glyphosate sensitive A. capillaris and decreased for the glyphosate tolerant F. ovina. Likewise, increasing levels of nitrogen increased the importance of survival for the relative nitrophobic F. ovina. Consequently, the proposed hypothesis was corroborated in this specific study. The proposed method will enable predictions of the effects of agricultural practices on community dynamics in a relatively simple setup eliminating the need to quantify all the interaction among the species in the plant community. The method will be immediately useful for the regulation of non-cultivated buffer strips between agricultural fields and semi-natural and natural biotopes such as hedgerows and waterways.

  20. [Seasonal variation of proximate composition in three commercially important species in the Gulf of Nicoya, Puntarenas, Costa Rica].

    PubMed

    Rodríguez, Cristian Fonseca; Solera, Fabián Chavarriá; Mejía-Arana, Fernando

    2013-03-01

    Nutritional value of seafood for human consumption is worldwide recognized. Some information have been generated in other countries, nevertheless, there is limited information describing the chemical composition of some fishery important species caught in the Gulf of Nicoya. For this reason, we studied the levels of proximal components of the edible parts (fresh) of three commercially important species. The meat samples of snook Centropomus unionesis, the shrimp Trachypenaeus byrdi and the bivalve Polymesoda radiata, were collected from the Puntarenas local fish market during the fishing season of February 2009 to January 2010. Proximate composition analysis was determined according to AOAC methodology, and evaluated the moisture content, and protein and lipid composition of shellfish meats. The results indicated that the moisture content ranged from 74.6-80.6g/100g for snook 76.9-80.0g/100g for shrimp and 77.9-89.5g/100g for green mussel. After the moisture, the protein was the most abundant chemical fraction (6.8 to 21g/100g) showing the highest values in February for the shrimp and green mussel, and December for snook. The largest fluctuations in the lipid content were found in the snook, ranging from 0.7g/100g to 5.6g/100g; the highest values in this fraction were found in shrimp, green mussel and snook, for July, February and April samples respectively. Considering these results, we concluded that fish and shrimp species studied are a good alternative for human consumption as a source of protein and low lipid content.

  1. Spatial decoupling of agricultural production and consumption: quantifying dependences of countries on food imports due to domestic land and water constraints

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fader, Marianela; Gerten, Dieter; Krause, Michael; Lucht, Wolfgang; Cramer, Wolfgang

    2013-03-01

    In our globalizing world, the geographical locations of food production and consumption are becoming increasingly disconnected, which increases reliance on external resources and their trade. We quantified to what extent water and land constraints limit countries’ capacities, at present and by 2050, to produce on their own territory the crop products that they currently import from other countries. Scenarios of increased crop productivity and water use, cropland expansion (excluding areas prioritized for other uses) and population change are accounted for. We found that currently 16% of the world population use the opportunities of international trade to cover their demand for agricultural products. Population change may strongly increase the number of people depending on ex situ land and water resources up to about 5.2 billion (51% of world population) in the SRES A2r scenario. International trade will thus have to intensify if population growth is not accompanied by dietary change towards less resource-intensive products, by cropland expansion, or by productivity improvements, mainly in Africa and the Middle East. Up to 1.3 billion people may be at risk of food insecurity in 2050 in present low-income economies (mainly in Africa), if their economic development does not allow them to afford productivity increases, cropland expansion and/or imports from other countries.

  2. Relative importance of phenotypic trait matching and species' abundances in determining plant-avian seed dispersal interactions in a small insular community.

    PubMed

    González-Castro, Aarón; Yang, Suann; Nogales, Manuel; Carlo, Tomás A

    2015-03-05

    Network theory has provided a general way to understand mutualistic plant-animal interactions at the community level. However, the mechanisms responsible for interaction patterns remain controversial. In this study we use a combination of statistical models and probability matrices to evaluate the relative importance of species morphological and nutritional (phenotypic) traits and species abundance in determining interactions between fleshy-fruited plants and birds that disperse their seeds. The models included variables associated with species abundance, a suite of variables associated with phenotypic traits (fruit diameter, bird bill width, fruit nutrient compounds), and the species identity of the avian disperser. Results show that both phenotypic traits and species abundance are important determinants of pairwise interactions. However, when considered separately, fruit diameter and bill width were more important in determining seed dispersal interactions. The effect of fruit compounds was less substantial and only important when considered together with abundance-related variables and/or the factor 'animal species'.

  3. Crop Farmers' Willingness to Pay for Agricultural Extension Services in Bangladesh: Cases of Selected Villages in Two Important Agro-Ecological Zones

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Uddin, Ektear MD.; Gao, Qijie; Mamun-Ur-Rashid, MD.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: Globally, many extension professionals and policy-makers are advocating fee based services, in addressing the fund shortage and sustainable provision of agricultural advisory services. Hence, the article attempts to expose the farmers' willingness to pay (WTP) as agricultural extension in Bangladesh is experiencing chronic fund crisis.…

  4. Prevalence of SGHV among tsetse species of economic importance in Tanzania and their implication for SIT application.

    PubMed

    Malele, Imna I; Manangwa, Oliver; Nyingilili, Hamisi H; Kitwika, Winston A; Lyaruu, Eugene A; Msangi, Atway R; Ouma, Johnson O; Nkwangulila, Gamba; Abd-Alla, Adly M M

    2013-03-01

    Sterile Insect technique is an important component in area-wide integrated tsetse control. The presence of the salivary glands hypertrophy virus (SGHV) in the wild tsetse, which are the seeds for colony adaptations in the laboratory has become a stumbling block in establishing and maintaining colonies in the laboratory. The virus is transmitted both vertically (in the wild) and horizontally (in the laboratory). However, its prevalence is magnified in the laboratory as a result of the use of in vitro membrane feeding regimen. Fly species of Glossina fuscipes fuscipes, G. pallidipes, G. morsitans and G. swynnertoni were collected from the coastal and inland areas of Tanzania and virus infection rates were assessed microscopically and by PCR. The data showed that in a period of 4years, the virus was present in all species tested irrespective of their ages, sex, and season of the year. However, infection levels differed among species and from one location to another. Symptomatic infection determined by dissection was 1.2% (25/2164) from the coast as compared to 0.4% (6/1725) for inland collected flies. PCR analysis indicated a higher infection rate of 19.81% (104/525) of asymptomatic flies. From these observations, we conclude that care should be taken when planning to initiate tsetse laboratory colonies for use in SIT eradication program. All efforts should be made to select non-infected flies when initiating laboratory colonies and to try to minimize the infection with SGHV. Also management of SGHV infection in the established colony should be applied.

  5. Nordic-Baltic Student Teachers' Identification of and Interest in Plant and Animal Species: The Importance of Species Identification and Biodiversity for Sustainable Development

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Palmberg, Irmeli; Berg, Ida; Jeronen, Eila; Kärkkäinen, Sirpa; Norrgård-Sillanpää, Pia; Persson, Christel; Vilkonis, Rytis; Yli-Panula, Eija

    2015-01-01

    Knowledge of species, interest in nature, and nature experiences are the factors that best promote interest in and understanding of environmental issues, biodiversity and sustainable life. The aim of this study is to investigate how well student teachers identify common local species, their interest in and ideas about species identification, and…

  6. Seasonal change in main alkaloids of jaborandi (Pilocarpus microphyllus Stapf ex Wardleworth), an economically important species from the Brazilian flora

    PubMed Central

    Véras, Leiz Maria Costa; Azevedo, Iábita Fabiana Sousa; Biase, Adriele Giaretta; Costa, Joana; Oliveira, Maria Beatriz P. P.; Mafra, Isabel

    2017-01-01

    Pilocarpus microphyllus Stapf ex Wardleworth (jaborandi, Rutaceae) is one of the most important Brazilian medicinal species owing to its content of pilocarpine (PIL), an alkaloid used for treating glaucoma and xerostomia. This species contains another alkaloid, epiisopiloturine (EPI), which has demonstrated effectiveness against schistosomiasis. The aim of this work was to assess seasonal changes of PIL and EPI in three populations of cultivated P. microphyllus from northeastern Brazil over one year, including the dry and rainy seasons. Alkaloid profiles were correlated to phenotypic and genetic patterns in the morphological and molecular characterizations. PIL was the primary alkaloid and its levels differed among populations in all months except September. The S01 population (green line) showed an especially high PIL content compared to populations S02 and S03 (traditional line), which had similar alkaloid contents. PIL content gradually decreased in the three populations in the rainy season.EPI content was significantly different between the green line (S01) and the traditional line (S02 and S03).S01 had a significantly lower EPI content in all months, demonstrating that it was not the best source for EPI extraction. Inter simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers and morphological analyses clearly separated S01 from S02 and S03, in agreement with the alkaloid results. This study shows the first correlation between the chemical, morphological, and molecular markers of P. microphyllus and highlights the potential benefits of a multidisciplinary research approach aimed at supporting both industry and conservation of natural resources. PMID:28151972

  7. Seasonal change in main alkaloids of jaborandi (Pilocarpus microphyllus Stapf ex Wardleworth), an economically important species from the Brazilian flora.

    PubMed

    Lima, David Fernandes; de Lima, Luiza Ianny; Rocha, Jefferson Almeida; de Andrade, Ivanilza Moreira; Grazina, Liliana Gonçalves; Villa, Caterina; Meira, Liliana; Véras, Leiz Maria Costa; Azevedo, Iábita Fabiana Sousa; Biase, Adriele Giaretta; Costa, Joana; Oliveira, Maria Beatriz P P; Mafra, Isabel; Leite, José Roberto de Souza de Almeida

    2017-01-01

    Pilocarpus microphyllus Stapf ex Wardleworth (jaborandi, Rutaceae) is one of the most important Brazilian medicinal species owing to its content of pilocarpine (PIL), an alkaloid used for treating glaucoma and xerostomia. This species contains another alkaloid, epiisopiloturine (EPI), which has demonstrated effectiveness against schistosomiasis. The aim of this work was to assess seasonal changes of PIL and EPI in three populations of cultivated P. microphyllus from northeastern Brazil over one year, including the dry and rainy seasons. Alkaloid profiles were correlated to phenotypic and genetic patterns in the morphological and molecular characterizations. PIL was the primary alkaloid and its levels differed among populations in all months except September. The S01 population (green line) showed an especially high PIL content compared to populations S02 and S03 (traditional line), which had similar alkaloid contents. PIL content gradually decreased in the three populations in the rainy season.EPI content was significantly different between the green line (S01) and the traditional line (S02 and S03).S01 had a significantly lower EPI content in all months, demonstrating that it was not the best source for EPI extraction. Inter simple sequence repeat (ISSR) markers and morphological analyses clearly separated S01 from S02 and S03, in agreement with the alkaloid results. This study shows the first correlation between the chemical, morphological, and molecular markers of P. microphyllus and highlights the potential benefits of a multidisciplinary research approach aimed at supporting both industry and conservation of natural resources.

  8. Importance of well-designed monitoring programs for the conservation of endangered species: case study of the Snail Kite

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Martin, J.; Kitchens, W.M.; Hines, J.E.

    2007-01-01

    Monitoring natural populations is often a necessary step to establish the conservation status of species and to help improve management decisions. Nevertheless, many monitoring programs do not effectively address primary sources of variability in monitoring data, which ultimately may limit the utility of monitoring in identifying declines and improving management. To illustrate the importance of taking into account detectability and spatial variation, we used a recently proposed estimator of abundance (superpopulation estimator) to estimate population size of and number of young produced by the Snail Kite (Rostrhamus sociabilis plumbeus) in Florida. During the last decade, primary recovery targets set by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for the Snail Kite that were based on deficient monitoring programs (i.e., uncorrected counts) were close to being met (by simply increasing search effort during count surveys). During that same period, the Snail Kite population declined dramatically (by 55% from 1997 to 2005) and the number of young decreased by 70% between 1992?1998 and 1999?2005. Our results provide a strong practical case in favor of the argument that investing a sufficient amount of time and resources into designing and implementing monitoring programs that carefully address detectability and spatial variation is critical for the conservation of endangered species.

  9. Ultramorphological characteristics of immature stages of Chrysomya albiceps (Wiedemann 1819) (Diptera: Calliphoridae), a fly specie of forensic importance.

    PubMed

    Mendonça, Paloma Martins; Dos Santos-Mallet, Jacenir Reis; Queiroz, Margareth Maria De Carvalho

    2010-08-01

    Forensic entomology is an area of science that serves as a tool in crime scene investigations. Usually, flies are the first insects to reach a dead body and can oviposit just a few hours after arrival. Therefore the knowledge of immature stages is essential for correct identification of the species found on corpses. Scanning electron microscopy gives detailed information about morphological characters helping to identify the immature forms and consequently serves as a tool in crime scene investigations. C. albiceps is a very important fly for forensic entomologists because its larvae are almost always present on a dead body and it is facultative predators and therefore can alter the composition of species present at the carcass. The aim of this study is to identify eggs, larvae, and puparia of C. albiceps using SEM. Eggs were elongated with the anterior region ending in a "Y" shape and the posterior end was tapered. The micropyle was a well-adorned orifice with some projections around it. The first instar larva was composed of 12 segments separated by spines. Only one spiracular opening could be seen at the posterior spiracle. Body tegument was smooth and tubercles were not seen. Antennae and maxillary palps were visible. Second and third larval instars were very similar to first instar, except for the presence of anterior spiracle. However, body tegument was composed of net-like patches and tubercles were visible. Tubercles present at the third instar larvae were robust and erect. Puparia showed a retracted cephalic region and curved tubercles.

  10. Integrating Agricultural and Ecological Goals into the Management of Species-Rich Grasslands: Learning from the Flowering Meadows Competition in France.

    PubMed

    Magda, Danièle; de Sainte Marie, Christine; Plantureux, Sylvain; Agreil, Cyril; Amiaud, Bernard; Mestelan, Philippe; Mihout, Sarah

    2015-11-01

    Current agri-environmental schemes for reconciling agricultural production with biodiversity conservation are proving ineffective Europe-wide, increasing interest in results-based schemes (RBSs). We describe here the French "Flowering Meadows" competition, rewarding the "best agroecological balance" in semi-natural grasslands managed by livestock farmers. This competition, which was entered by about a thousand farmers in 50 regional nature parks between 2007 and 2014, explicitly promotes a new style of agri-environmental scheme focusing on an ability to reach the desired outcome rather than adherence to prescriptive management rules. Building on our experience in the design and monitoring of the competition, we argue that the cornerstone of successful RBSs is a collective learning process in which the reconciliation of agriculture and environment is reconsidered in terms of synergistic relationships between agricultural and ecological functioning. We present the interactive, iterative process by which we defined an original method for assessing species-rich grasslands in agroecological terms. This approach was based on the integration of new criteria, such as flexibility, feeding value, and consistency of use, into the assessment of forage production performance and the consideration of biodiversity conservation through its functional role within the grassland ecosystem, rather than simply noting the presence or abundance of species. We describe the adaptation of this methodology on the basis of competition feedback, to bring about a significant shift in the conventional working methods of agronomists and conservationists (including researchers).The potential and efficacy of RBSs for promoting ecologically sound livestock systems are discussed in the concluding remarks, and they relate to the ecological intensification debate.

  11. Integrating Agricultural and Ecological Goals into the Management of Species-Rich Grasslands: Learning from the Flowering Meadows Competition in France

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Magda, Danièle; de Sainte Marie, Christine; Plantureux, Sylvain; Agreil, Cyril; Amiaud, Bernard; Mestelan, Philippe; Mihout, Sarah

    2015-11-01

    Current agri-environmental schemes for reconciling agricultural production with biodiversity conservation are proving ineffective Europe-wide, increasing interest in results-based schemes (RBSs). We describe here the French "Flowering Meadows" competition, rewarding the "best agroecological balance" in semi-natural grasslands managed by livestock farmers. This competition, which was entered by about a thousand farmers in 50 regional nature parks between 2007 and 2014, explicitly promotes a new style of agri-environmental scheme focusing on an ability to reach the desired outcome rather than adherence to prescriptive management rules. Building on our experience in the design and monitoring of the competition, we argue that the cornerstone of successful RBSs is a collective learning process in which the reconciliation of agriculture and environment is reconsidered in terms of synergistic relationships between agricultural and ecological functioning. We present the interactive, iterative process by which we defined an original method for assessing species-rich grasslands in agroecological terms. This approach was based on the integration of new criteria, such as flexibility, feeding value, and consistency of use, into the assessment of forage production performance and the consideration of biodiversity conservation through its functional role within the grassland ecosystem, rather than simply noting the presence or abundance of species. We describe the adaptation of this methodology on the basis of competition feedback, to bring about a significant shift in the conventional working methods of agronomists and conservationists (including researchers).The potential and efficacy of RBSs for promoting ecologically sound livestock systems are discussed in the concluding remarks, and they relate to the ecological intensification debate.

  12. Irrigated agriculture is an important risk factor for West Nile virus disease in the hyperendemic Larimer-Boulder-Weld area of north central Colorado.

    PubMed

    Eisen, Lars; Barker, Christopher M; Moore, Chester G; Pape, W John; Winters, Anna M; Cheronis, Nicholas

    2010-09-01

    This study focused on two West Nile virus (WNV) disease outbreak years, 2003 and 2007, and included a three-county area (Larimer, Boulder, and Weld) in North Central Colorado that is hyperendemic for WNV disease. We used epidemiological data for reported WNV disease cases at the census tract scale to: (1) elucidate whether WNV disease incidence differs between census tracts classified as having high versus lower human population density (based on a threshold value of 580 persons/km2) and (2) determine associations between WNV disease incidence and habitat types suitable as development sites for the larval stage of Culex mosquito vectors. WNV disease incidence was significantly elevated in census tracts with lower human population density, compared with those with high density of human population, in both 2003 (median per census tract of 223 and 143 cases per 100,000 population, respectively) and 2007 (median per census tract of 46 and 19 cases per 100,000 population). This is most likely related, in large part, to greater percentages of coverage in less densely populated census tracts by habitats suitable as development sites for Culex larvae (open water, developed open space, pasture/hay, cultivated crops, woody wetlands, and emergent herbaceous wetlands) and, especially, for the subset of these habitats made up by irrigated agricultural land (pasture/hay and cultivated crops) that presumably serve as major producers of the locally most important vector of WNV to humans: Culex tarsalis. A series of analyses produced significant positive associations between greater coverage of or shorter distance to irrigated agricultural land and elevated WNV disease incidence. As an exercise to produce data with potential to inform spatial implementation schemes for prevention and control measures within the study area, we mapped the spatial patterns, by census tract, of WNV disease incidence in 2003 and 2007 as well as the locations of census tracts that had either low (<25th

  13. Agricultural ponds support amphibian populations

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knutson, M.G.; Richardson, W.B.; Reineke, D.M.; Gray, B.R.; Parmelee, J.R.; Weick, S.E.

    2004-01-01

    In some agricultural regions, natural wetlands are scarce, and constructed agricultural ponds may represent important alternative breeding habitats for amphibians. Properly managed, these agricultural ponds may effectively increase the total amount of breeding habitat and help to sustain populations. We studied small, constructed agricultural ponds in southeastern Minnesota to assess their value as amphibian breeding sites. Our study examined habitat factors associated with amphibian reproduction at two spatial scales: the pond and the landscape surrounding the pond. We found that small agricultural ponds in southeastern Minnesota provided breeding habitat for at least 10 species of amphibians. Species richness and multispecies reproductive success were more closely associated with characteristics of the pond (water quality, vegetation, and predators) compared with characteristics of the surrounding landscape, but individual species were associated with both pond and landscape variables. Ponds surrounded by row crops had similar species richness and reproductive success compared with natural wetlands and ponds surrounded by nongrazed pasture. Ponds used for watering livestock had elevated concentrations of phosphorus, higher turbidity, and a trend toward reduced amphibian reproductive success. Species richness was highest in small ponds, ponds with lower total nitrogen concentrations, tiger salamanders (Ambystoma tigrinum) present, and lacking fish. Multispecies reproductive success was best in ponds with lower total nitrogen concentrations, less emergent vegetation, and lacking fish. Habitat factors associated with higher reproductive success varied among individual species. We conclude that small, constructed farm ponds, properly managed, may help sustain amphibian populations in landscapes where natural wetland habitat is rare. We recommend management actions such as limiting livestock access to the pond to improve water quality, reducing nitrogen input, and

  14. Relative importance of phenotypic trait matching and species' abundances in determining plant–avian seed dispersal interactions in a small insular community

    PubMed Central

    González-Castro, Aarón; Yang, Suann; Nogales, Manuel; Carlo, Tomás A.

    2015-01-01

    Network theory has provided a general way to understand mutualistic plant–animal interactions at the community level. However, the mechanisms responsible for interaction patterns remain controversial. In this study we use a combination of statistical models and probability matrices to evaluate the relative importance of species morphological and nutritional (phenotypic) traits and species abundance in determining interactions between fleshy-fruited plants and birds that disperse their seeds. The models included variables associated with species abundance, a suite of variables associated with phenotypic traits (fruit diameter, bird bill width, fruit nutrient compounds), and the species identity of the avian disperser. Results show that both phenotypic traits and species abundance are important determinants of pairwise interactions. However, when considered separately, fruit diameter and bill width were more important in determining seed dispersal interactions. The effect of fruit compounds was less substantial and only important when considered together with abundance-related variables and/or the factor ‘animal species’. PMID:25750409

  15. Seed traits and genes important for translational biology – highlights from recent discoveries

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Seeds provide foods, feeds, and fuels. They are also an important delivery system of genetic information, which is essential for the survival of wild species in ecosystems and the production of agricultural species. In this review, seed traits important for agriculture are discussed with an emphasis...

  16. 9 CFR 93.912 - Import permits.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... Animals and Animal Products ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE... CONVEYANCE AND SHIPPING CONTAINERS Aquatic Animal Species General Provisions for Vhs-Regulated Fish Species... and Plant Health Inspection Service, Veterinary Services, National Center for Import and Export,...

  17. Regular habitat switch as an important feeding strategy of an opportunistic seabird species at the interface between land and sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schwemmer, Philipp; Garthe, Stefan

    2008-03-01

    During deteriorated prey availability, purely pelagic, specialised seabird species have to alter their feeding strategy by extending foraging radii and/or time spent at sea or reducing feeding intervals of chicks. In contrast, more generalised species such as the opportunistic black-headed gull ( Larus ridibundus) breeding at the German North Sea coast, can be assumed to react on prey shortages by switching foraging habitats. The coastal zone of the German North Sea provides a rich habitat mosaic consisting of the offshore zone, tidal flats and terrestrial habitats. Thus, we expected distinct temporal and spatial patterns of habitat switch in accordance with prey availability and environmental constraints. We carried out ship-based and aerial surveys as well as dietary analyses and observations on flight activity. We found a significant switch from terrestrial to marine feeding sites both on a daily basis (related to tidal cycle) and over the whole breeding season. Most likely, the latter switch is the result of lower prey availability in the terrestrial habitats and an increasing quality (in terms of prey abundance and energy intake) of the marine area. While there was only moderate variability in habitat use among different years, we revealed significant differences in the diet of birds from different colonies. The high dietary plasticity and flexible feeding strategy, switching between terrestrial and marine prey is certainly of major importance for the success of an opportunistic avian top predator in a complex coastal zone. It is suggested that - compared to situations elsewhere - the number of breeding pairs of black-headed gulls in the German North Sea coast are still stable due to the switch of foraging habitats performed by individuals in this region.

  18. Non-lethal effects of an invasive species in the marine environment: the importance of early life-history stages.

    PubMed

    Rius, Marc; Turon, Xavier; Marshall, Dustin J

    2009-04-01

    Studies examining the effects of invasive species have focussed traditionally on the direct/lethal effects of the invasive on the native community but there is a growing recognition that invasive species may also have non-lethal effects. In terrestrial systems, non-lethal effects of invasive species can disrupt early life-history phases (such as fertilisation, dispersal and subsequent establishment) of native species, but in the marine environment most studies focus on adult rather than early life-history stages. Here, we examine the potential for an introduced sessile marine invertebrate (Styela plicata) to exert both lethal and non-lethal effects on a native species (Microcosmus squamiger) across multiple early life-history stages. We determined whether sperm from the invasive species interfered with the fertilisation of eggs from the native species and found no effect. However, we did find strong effects of the invasive species on the post-fertilisation performance of the native species. The invasive species inhibited the settlement of native larvae and, in the field, the presence of the invasive species was associated with a ten-fold increase in the post-settlement mortality of the native species, as well as an initial reduction of growth in the native. Our results suggest that larvae of the native species avoid settling near the invasive species due to reduced post-settlement survival in its presence. Overall, we found that invasive species can have complex and pervasive effects (both lethal and non-lethal) across the early life-history stages of the native species, which are likely to result in its displacement and to facilitate further invasion.

  19. Mitochondrial DNA variation of North American populations of Aphthona species (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), flea beetles imported for biocontrol of leafy spurge

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Several flea beetle species from the genus Aphthona (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) have been introduced into North America as biological control agents for the rangeland weed, leafy spurge (Euphorbia esula L.). Three brownish colored species and two black species were released at many locations beginn...

  20. Bioremediation of agricultural solid waste leachates with diverse species of Cu (II) and Cd (II) by periphyton.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jiali; Liu, Junzhuo; Wu, Chenxi; Kerr, Philip G; Wong, Po-Keung; Wu, Yonghong

    2016-12-01

    The aim of this work was to study the bioremediation of agricultural solid waste leachates with high-concentrations of Cu (II) and Cd (II) after washing the wastes with water and Na2EDTA solution (0.2M). Results indicate that Cu (II) and Cd (II) are mainly comprised of Cu2(OH)2(2+), Cu3(OH)4(2+), CuOH(+), Cu(H2O)4(OH)2, Cd(2+) and CdOH(+) in the water-washed leachates and Cu(EDTA)(2-), Cu(HEDTA)(-), Cd(EDTA)(2-) and Cd(HEDTA)(-) in the Na2EDTA-washed leachates. Cu (II) removal efficiency by selected native periphyton from the water- and Na2EDTA-washed leachates were 80.5% and 68.4% respectively, and for Cd (II) it was 57.1% and 64.6%, because the periphyton was able to maintain a stable pH of the leachates and regulate its microbial composition and carbon metabolic capability to acclimate the chemical conditions of the leachates. This study provides a new biomeasure to treat leachates with high-concentration Cu(2+) and Cd(2+), and contribute valuable insights into the relationships between periphyton characteristics and heavy metals.

  1. Species interactions in an Andean bird–flowering plant network: phenology is more important than abundance or morphology

    PubMed Central

    Loiselle, Bette A.

    2016-01-01

    Biological constraints and neutral processes have been proposed to explain the properties of plant–pollinator networks. Using interactions between nectarivorous birds (hummingbirds and flowerpiercers) and flowering plants in high elevation forests (i.e., “elfin” forests) of the Andes, we explore the importance of biological constraints and neutral processes (random interactions) to explain the observed species interactions and network metrics, such as connectance, specialization, nestedness and asymmetry. In cold environments of elfin forests, which are located at the top of the tropical montane forest zone, many plants are adapted for pollination by birds, making this an ideal system to study plant–pollinator networks. To build the network of interactions between birds and plants, we used direct field observations. We measured abundance of birds using mist-nets and flower abundance using transects, and phenology by scoring presence of birds and flowers over time. We compared the length of birds’ bills to flower length to identify “forbidden interactions”—those interactions that could not result in legitimate floral visits based on mis-match in morphology. Diglossa flowerpiercers, which are characterized as “illegitimate” flower visitors, were relatively abundant. We found that the elfin forest network was nested with phenology being the factor that best explained interaction frequencies and nestedness, providing support for biological constraints hypothesis. We did not find morphological constraints to be important in explaining observed interaction frequencies and network metrics. Other network metrics (connectance, evenness and asymmetry), however, were better predicted by abundance (neutral process) models. Flowerpiercers, which cut holes and access flowers at their base and, consequently, facilitate nectar access for other hummingbirds, explain why morphological mis-matches were relatively unimportant in this system. Future work should

  2. Species interactions in an Andean bird-flowering plant network: phenology is more important than abundance or morphology.

    PubMed

    Gonzalez, Oscar; Loiselle, Bette A

    2016-01-01

    Biological constraints and neutral processes have been proposed to explain the properties of plant-pollinator networks. Using interactions between nectarivorous birds (hummingbirds and flowerpiercers) and flowering plants in high elevation forests (i.e., "elfin" forests) of the Andes, we explore the importance of biological constraints and neutral processes (random interactions) to explain the observed species interactions and network metrics, such as connectance, specialization, nestedness and asymmetry. In cold environments of elfin forests, which are located at the top of the tropical montane forest zone, many plants are adapted for pollination by birds, making this an ideal system to study plant-pollinator networks. To build the network of interactions between birds and plants, we used direct field observations. We measured abundance of birds using mist-nets and flower abundance using transects, and phenology by scoring presence of birds and flowers over time. We compared the length of birds' bills to flower length to identify "forbidden interactions"-those interactions that could not result in legitimate floral visits based on mis-match in morphology. Diglossa flowerpiercers, which are characterized as "illegitimate" flower visitors, were relatively abundant. We found that the elfin forest network was nested with phenology being the factor that best explained interaction frequencies and nestedness, providing support for biological constraints hypothesis. We did not find morphological constraints to be important in explaining observed interaction frequencies and network metrics. Other network metrics (connectance, evenness and asymmetry), however, were better predicted by abundance (neutral process) models. Flowerpiercers, which cut holes and access flowers at their base and, consequently, facilitate nectar access for other hummingbirds, explain why morphological mis-matches were relatively unimportant in this system. Future work should focus on how changes in

  3. Microbiology of wetwood: importance of pectin degradation and Clostridium species in living trees. [Eastern Cottonwood; Block Poplar; American Elm

    SciTech Connect

    Schink, B.; Ward, J.C.; Zeikus, J.G.

    1981-09-01

    Wetwood samples from standing trees of eastern cottonwood (Populus deltoides), black poplar (Populus nigra), and American elm (Ulmus americana) contained high numbers of aerobic and anaerobic pectin-degrading bacteria (10 to the power of 4 to 10 to the power of 6 cells per g of wood). High activity of polygalacturonate lyase (is less than or equal to 0.5 U/ml) was also detected in the fetid liquid that spurted from wetwood zones in the lower trunk when the trees were bored. A prevalent pectin-degrading obligately anaerobic bacterium isolated from these wetwoods was identified as Clostridium butyricum. Pectin decomposition by Clostridium butyricum strain 4P1 was associated with an inducible polygalacturonate lyase and pectin methylesterase, the same types of pectinolytic activity expressed in the wetwood of these trees. The pH optimum of the extracellular polygalacturonate lyase was alkaline (near pH 8.5). In vitro tests with sapwood samples from a conifer (Douglas fir, Pseudotsuga menziesii) showed that tori in membranes of bordered pits are degraded by pure cultures of strain 4P1, polygalacturonate lyase enzyme preparations of strain 4P1, and mixed methanogenic cultures from the tree samples of wetwood. These results provide evidence that pectin in xylem tissue is actively degraded by Clostridium butyricum strain 4P1 via polygalacturonate lyase activity. The importance of pectin degradation by bacteria, including Clostridium species, appears paramount in the formation and maintenance of the wetwood syndrome in certain living trees. (Refs. 38).

  4. Role of Free Radicals/Reactive Oxygen Species in MeHg Photodegradation: Importance of Utilizing Appropriate Scavengers.

    PubMed

    Han, Xiaoxiao; Li, Yanbin; Li, Dan; Liu, Chang

    2017-04-04

    A variety of free radicals (FR)/reactive oxygen species (ROS) have been proposed to dominate methylmercury (MeHg) photodegradation, primarily based on the results of FR/ROS scavenger addition experiments. However, in addition to eliminating FR/ROS, the added scavengers may also affect the experimental results by altering some water chemical properties, resulting in a misleading assessment of the importance of FR/ROS. In this study, 20 common FR/ROS scavengers were evaluated in terms of their influence on light absorbance, pH, MeHg analysis, MeHg-dissolved organic matter (DOM) complexation, and the scavenger-induced degradation of MeHg. Only nine scavengers were identified to be appropriate for investigating MeHg photodegradation. By utilizing these appropriate scavengers, direct photodegradation of MeHg-DOM complexes was found to be the major pathway of MeHg photodegradation in Laoshan Reservoir water and Stone Old Beach seawater. In contrast, MeHg photodegradation in Ink River water primarily occurs through both ·OH and (3)DOM* mediated indirect pathways and direct photodegradation of MeHg-DOM complexes. The diverse pathways of MeHg photodegradation in the tested water may be due to differences in water chemical properties. A severe overestimation of the role of FR/ROS was observed when several improper but commonly used scavengers were adopted, highlighting the necessity of utilizing appropriate scavengers.

  5. Biodiversity evaluation in tropical agricultural systems - How will rubber cultivation and land use change effect species diversity in SW China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cotter, M.; Grenz, J.; Sauerborn, J.

    2012-04-01

    The Greater Mekong Subregion is a known hotspot of biodiversity, which faces drastic changes due to human impact particularly with regard to infrastructure and economy. Within the framework of the Sino-German research project "Living Landscapes China" (LILAC), we have developed a biodiversity evaluation tool based on the combination of approaches from landscape ecology with detailed empirical data on species diversity and habitat characteristics of tropical plant and arthropod communities in a Geographical Information System. We use field ecological data to assess different spatial and qualitative aspects of the diversity and spatial distribution of species throughout the research area, a watershed in south-western Yunnan province, PR China. In addition, scenarios on the impact of land use change have been analyzed and compared in order to highlight the implications these possible future scenarios would have on species diversity within the research area. The aim of the presented tool is to provide scientists and policy makers who have to evaluate the consequences of scenarios of future land use with information on the current and likely future state of biodiversity in their research area or administrative region. This will enable them to assess the likely impacts of land use changes on structural and ecological diversity and allow for informed land use planning. The methodology developed for this tool can also be applied outside of the Greater Mekong Subregion, as the model structure allows for an easy adaption to other research areas and challenges, be it oil palm production in Southeast Asia or small scale farming in central Africa or the Amazon basin.

  6. What`s at stake in the Pacific Northwest salmon debate? Jobs, hydropower, agriculture, fish harvests...species survival

    SciTech Connect

    Gillis, A.M.

    1995-03-01

    This article highlights the debate about the pacific salmon in the Pacific Northwest. The population levels of all salmonid species are down precipitously, with some listed as endangered, but no one has come up with a salmon restoration plan that is perceived to be both effective and painless to all the human parties with a vested interest. The Salmon issue touches everyone in the region directly or indirectly. Discussed are the following general topics: devising a plan for the salmon and the politics of planning and the problem of how the four fundamental areas, hydropower, habitat, hatcheries, and harvest, need to be prioritized.

  7. Rhizosphere Organic Anions Play a Minor Role in Improving Crop Species' Ability to Take Up Residual Phosphorus (P) in Agricultural Soils Low in P Availability.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yanliang; Krogstad, Tore; Clarke, Jihong L; Hallama, Moritz; Øgaard, Anne F; Eich-Greatorex, Susanne; Kandeler, Ellen; Clarke, Nicholas

    2016-01-01

    Many arable lands have accumulated large reserves of residual phosphorus (P) and a relatively large proportion of soil P is less available for uptake by plants. Root released organic anions are widely documented as a key physiological strategy to enhance P availability, while limited information has been generated on the contribution of rhizosphere organic anions to P utilization by crops grown in agricultural soils that are low in available P and high in extractable Ca, Al, and Fe. We studied the role of rhizosphere organic anions in P uptake from residual P in four common crops Triticum aestivum, Avena sativa, Solanum tuberosum, and Brassica napus in low- and high-P availability agricultural soils from long-term fertilization field trials in a mini-rhizotron experiment with four replications. Malate was generally the dominant organic anion. More rhizosphere citrate was detected in low P soils than in high P soil. B. napus showed 74-103% increase of malate in low P loam, compared with clay loam. A. sativa had the greatest rhizosphere citrate concentration in all soils (5.3-15.2 μmol g(-1) root DW). A. sativa also showed the highest level of root colonization by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF; 36 and 40%), the greatest root mass ratio (0.51 and 0.66) in the low-P clay loam and loam respectively, and the greatest total P uptake (5.92 mg P/mini-rhizotron) in the low-P loam. B. napus had 15-44% more rhizosphere acid phosphatase (APase) activity, ~0.1-0.4 units lower rhizosphere pH than other species, the greatest increase in rhizosphere water-soluble P in the low-P soils, and the greatest total P uptake in the low-P clay loam. Shoot P content was mainly explained by rhizosphere APase activity, water-soluble P and pH within low P soils across species. Within species, P uptake was mainly linked to rhizosphere water soluble P, APase, and pH in low P soils. The effects of rhizosphere organic anions varied among species and they appeared to play minor roles in

  8. Rhizosphere Organic Anions Play a Minor Role in Improving Crop Species' Ability to Take Up Residual Phosphorus (P) in Agricultural Soils Low in P Availability

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yanliang; Krogstad, Tore; Clarke, Jihong L.; Hallama, Moritz; Øgaard, Anne F.; Eich-Greatorex, Susanne; Kandeler, Ellen; Clarke, Nicholas

    2016-01-01

    Many arable lands have accumulated large reserves of residual phosphorus (P) and a relatively large proportion of soil P is less available for uptake by plants. Root released organic anions are widely documented as a key physiological strategy to enhance P availability, while limited information has been generated on the contribution of rhizosphere organic anions to P utilization by crops grown in agricultural soils that are low in available P and high in extractable Ca, Al, and Fe. We studied the role of rhizosphere organic anions in P uptake from residual P in four common crops Triticum aestivum, Avena sativa, Solanum tuberosum, and Brassica napus in low- and high-P availability agricultural soils from long-term fertilization field trials in a mini-rhizotron experiment with four replications. Malate was generally the dominant organic anion. More rhizosphere citrate was detected in low P soils than in high P soil. B. napus showed 74–103% increase of malate in low P loam, compared with clay loam. A. sativa had the greatest rhizosphere citrate concentration in all soils (5.3–15.2 μmol g−1 root DW). A. sativa also showed the highest level of root colonization by arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF; 36 and 40%), the greatest root mass ratio (0.51 and 0.66) in the low-P clay loam and loam respectively, and the greatest total P uptake (5.92 mg P/mini-rhizotron) in the low-P loam. B. napus had 15–44% more rhizosphere acid phosphatase (APase) activity, ~0.1–0.4 units lower rhizosphere pH than other species, the greatest increase in rhizosphere water-soluble P in the low-P soils, and the greatest total P uptake in the low-P clay loam. Shoot P content was mainly explained by rhizosphere APase activity, water-soluble P and pH within low P soils across species. Within species, P uptake was mainly linked to rhizosphere water soluble P, APase, and pH in low P soils. The effects of rhizosphere organic anions varied among species and they appeared to play minor roles in

  9. Species mixture effects on flammability across plant phylogeny: the importance of litter particle size and the special role for non-Pinus Pinaceae.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Weiwei; Cornwell, William K; van Pomeren, Marinda; van Logtestijn, Richard S P; Cornelissen, Johannes H C

    2016-11-01

    Fire affects and is affected by plants. Vegetation varies in flammability, that is, its general ability to burn, at different levels of ecological organization. To scale from individual plant traits to community flammability states, understanding trait effects on species flammability variation and their interaction is important. Plant traits are the cumulative result of evolution and they show, to differing extents, phylogenetic conservatism. We asked whether phylogenetic distance between species predicts species mixture effects on litterbed flammability. We conducted controlled laboratory burns for 34 phylogenetically wide-ranging species and 34 random two-species mixtures from them. Generally, phylogenetic distance did not predict species mixture effects on flammability. Across the plant phylogeny, most species were flammable except those in the non-Pinus Pinaceae, which shed small needles producing dense, poorly ventilated litterbeds above the packing threshold and therefore nonflammable. Consistently, either positive or negative dominance effects on flammability of certain flammable or those non-flammable species were found in mixtures involving the non-Pinus Pinaceae. We demonstrate litter particle size is key to explaining species nonadditivity in fuelbed flammability. The potential of certain species to influence fire disproportionately to their abundance might increase the positive feedback effects of plant flammability on community flammability state if flammable species are favored by fire.

  10. The Slugs of Britain and Ireland: Undetected and Undescribed Species Increase a Well-Studied, Economically Important Fauna by More Than 20%

    PubMed Central

    Rowson, Ben; Anderson, Roy; Turner, James A.; Symondson, William O. C.

    2014-01-01

    The slugs of Britain and Ireland form a well-studied fauna of economic importance. They include many widespread European species that are introduced elsewhere (at least half of the 36 currently recorded British species are established in North America, for example). To test the contention that the British and Irish fauna consists of 36 species, and to verify the identity of each, a species delimitation study was conducted based on a geographically wide survey. Comparisons between mitochondrial DNA (COI, 16S), nuclear DNA (ITS-1) and morphology were investigated with reference to interspecific hybridisation. Species delimitation of the fauna produced a primary species hypothesis of 47 putative species. This was refined to a secondary species hypothesis of 44 species by integration with morphological and other data. Thirty six of these correspond to the known fauna (two species in Arion subgenus Carinarion were scarcely distinct and Arion (Mesarion) subfuscus consisted of two near-cryptic species). However, by the same criteria a further eight previously undetected species (22% of the fauna) are established in Britain and/or Ireland. Although overlooked, none are strictly morphologically cryptic, and some appear previously undescribed. Most of the additional species are probably accidentally introduced, and several are already widespread in Britain and Ireland (and thus perhaps elsewhere). At least three may be plant pests. Some evidence was found for interspecific hybridisation among the large Arion species (although not involving A. flagellus) and more unexpectedly in species pairs in Deroceras (Agriolimacidae) and Limacus (Limacidae). In the latter groups, introgression appears to have occurred in one direction only, with recently-invading lineages becoming common at the expense of long-established or native ones. The results show how even a well-studied, macroscopic fauna can be vulnerable to cryptic and undetected invasions and changes. PMID:24740519

  11. The slugs of Britain and Ireland: undetected and undescribed species increase a well-studied, economically important fauna by more than 20%.

    PubMed

    Rowson, Ben; Anderson, Roy; Turner, James A; Symondson, William O C

    2014-01-01

    The slugs of Britain and Ireland form a well-studied fauna of economic importance. They include many widespread European species that are introduced elsewhere (at least half of the 36 currently recorded British species are established in North America, for example). To test the contention that the British and Irish fauna consists of 36 species, and to verify the identity of each, a species delimitation study was conducted based on a geographically wide survey. Comparisons between mitochondrial DNA (COI, 16S), nuclear DNA (ITS-1) and morphology were investigated with reference to interspecific hybridisation. Species delimitation of the fauna produced a primary species hypothesis of 47 putative species. This was refined to a secondary species hypothesis of 44 species by integration with morphological and other data. Thirty six of these correspond to the known fauna (two species in Arion subgenus Carinarion were scarcely distinct and Arion (Mesarion) subfuscus consisted of two near-cryptic species). However, by the same criteria a further eight previously undetected species (22% of the fauna) are established in Britain and/or Ireland. Although overlooked, none are strictly morphologically cryptic, and some appear previously undescribed. Most of the additional species are probably accidentally introduced, and several are already widespread in Britain and Ireland (and thus perhaps elsewhere). At least three may be plant pests. Some evidence was found for interspecific hybridisation among the large Arion species (although not involving A. flagellus) and more unexpectedly in species pairs in Deroceras (Agriolimacidae) and Limacus (Limacidae). In the latter groups, introgression appears to have occurred in one direction only, with recently-invading lineages becoming common at the expense of long-established or native ones. The results show how even a well-studied, macroscopic fauna can be vulnerable to cryptic and undetected invasions and changes.

  12. The importance of natural habitats to Brazilian free-tailed bats in intensive agricultural landscapes in the Winter Garden Region of Texas, United States

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The conversion of natural lands to agriculture affects the distribution of biological diversity across the landscape. In particular, cropland monocultures alter insect abundance and diversity compared to adjacent natural habitats, but nevertheless can provide large numbers of insect pests as prey i...

  13. Biotechnology and Agriculture.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kenney, Martin

    Even at this early date in the application of biotechnology to agriculture, it is clear that agriculture may provide the largest market for new or less expensive biotechnologically manufactured products. The chemical and pharmaceutical industries that hold important positions in agricultural inputs are consolidating their positions by purchasing…

  14. Relative Importance of Current and Past Landscape Structure and Local Habitat Conditions for Plant Species Richness in Dry Grassland-Like Forest Openings

    PubMed Central

    Husáková, Iveta; Münzbergová, Zuzana

    2014-01-01

    In fragmented landscapes, plant species richness may depend not only on local habitat conditions but also on landscape structure. In addition, both present and past landscape structure may be important for species richness. There are, however, only a few studies that have investigated the relative importance of all of these factors. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of current and past landscape structures and habitat conditions on species richness at dry grassland-like forest openings in a forested landscape and to assess their relative importance for species richness. We analyzed information on past and present landscape structures using aerial photographs from 1938, 1973, 1988, 2000 and 2007. We calculated the area of each locality and its isolation in the present and in the past and the continuity of localities in GIS. At each locality, we recorded all vascular plant species (296 species in 110 forest openings) and information on abiotic conditions of the localities. We found that the current species richness of the forest openings was significantly determined by local habitat conditions as well as by landscape structure in the present and in the past. The highest species richness was observed on larger and more heterogeneous localities with rocks and shallow soils, which were already large and well connected to other localities in 1938. The changes in the landscape structure in the past can thus have strong effects on current species richness. Future studies attempting to understand determinants of species diversity in fragmented landscapes should also include data on past landscape structure, as it may in fact be more important than the present structure. PMID:24809474

  15. Relative importance of current and past landscape structure and local habitat conditions for plant species richness in dry grassland-like forest openings.

    PubMed

    Husáková, Iveta; Münzbergová, Zuzana

    2014-01-01

    In fragmented landscapes, plant species richness may depend not only on local habitat conditions but also on landscape structure. In addition, both present and past landscape structure may be important for species richness. There are, however, only a few studies that have investigated the relative importance of all of these factors. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of current and past landscape structures and habitat conditions on species richness at dry grassland-like forest openings in a forested landscape and to assess their relative importance for species richness. We analyzed information on past and present landscape structures using aerial photographs from 1938, 1973, 1988, 2000 and 2007. We calculated the area of each locality and its isolation in the present and in the past and the continuity of localities in GIS. At each locality, we recorded all vascular plant species (296 species in 110 forest openings) and information on abiotic conditions of the localities. We found that the current species richness of the forest openings was significantly determined by local habitat conditions as well as by landscape structure in the present and in the past. The highest species richness was observed on larger and more heterogeneous localities with rocks and shallow soils, which were already large and well connected to other localities in 1938. The changes in the landscape structure in the past can thus have strong effects on current species richness. Future studies attempting to understand determinants of species diversity in fragmented landscapes should also include data on past landscape structure, as it may in fact be more important than the present structure.

  16. When Ontogeny Matters: A New Japanese Species of Brittle Star Illustrates the Importance of Considering both Adult and Juvenile Characters in Taxonomic Practice

    PubMed Central

    Martynov, Alexander; Ishida, Yoshiaki; Irimura, Seiichi; Tajiri, Rie; O’Hara, Timothy; Fujita, Toshihiko

    2015-01-01

    Current taxonomy offers numerous approaches and methods for species delimitation and description. However, most of them are based on the adult characters and rarely suggest a dynamic representation of developmental transformations of taxonomically important features. Here we show how the underestimation of ontogenetic changes may result in long term lack of recognition of a new species of one of the most common ophiacanthid brittle stars (Echinodermata: Ophiuroidea) from the North Pacific. Based on vast material collected predominantly by various Japanese expeditions in the course of more than 50 years, and thorough study of appropriate type material, we revise the complex of three common species of the ophiuroid genus Ophiacantha which have been persistently confused with each other. The present study thus reveals the previously unrecognized new species Ophiacantha kokusai sp.nov. which is commonly distributed off the Pacific coast of Japan. The new species shows developmental differentiation from the closely related species Ophiacantha rhachophora H. L. Clark, 1911 and retains clearly expressed early juvenile features in the adult morphology. Another species, Ophiacantha clypeata Kyte, 1977, which had been separated from O. rhachophora, is in turn shown to be just a juvenile stage of another North Pacific species, Ophiacantha trachybactra H.L. Clark, 1911. For every species, detailed morphological data from both adult and juvenile specimens based on scanning electron microscopy are presented. A special grinding method showing complex internal features has been utilized for the first time. For all three species in this complex, a clear bathymetric differentiation is revealed: O. rhachophora predominantly inhabits shallow waters, 0–250 m, the new species O. kokusai lives deeper, at 250–600 m, and the third species, O. trachybactra, is found at 500–2,000 m. The present case clearly highlights the importance of considering developmental transformations, not

  17. Predicting the impacts of climate change on animal distributions: the importance of local adaptation and species' traits

    SciTech Connect

    HELLMANN, J. J.; LOBO, N. F.

    2011-12-20

    The geographic range limits of many species are strongly affected by climate and are expected to change under global warming. For species that are able to track changing climate over broad geographic areas, we expect to see shifts in species distributions toward the poles and away from the equator. A number of ecological and evolutionary factors, however, could restrict this shifting or redistribution under climate change. These factors include restricted habitat availability, restricted capacity for or barriers to movement, or reduced abundance of colonists due the perturbation effect of climate change. This research project examined the last of these constraints - that climate change could perturb local conditions to which populations are adapted, reducing the likelihood that a species will shift its distribution by diminishing the number of potential colonists. In the most extreme cases, species ranges could collapse over a broad geographic area with no poleward migration and an increased risk of species extinction. Changes in individual species ranges are the processes that drive larger phenomena such as changes in land cover, ecosystem type, and even changes in carbon cycling. For example, consider the poleward range shift and population outbreaks of the mountain pine beetle that has decimated millions of acres of Douglas fir trees in the western US and Canada. Standing dead trees cause forest fires and release vast quantities of carbon to the atmosphere. The beetle likely shifted its range because it is not locally adapted across its range, and it appears to be limited by winter low temperatures that have steadily increased in the last decades. To understand range and abundance changes like the pine beetle, we must reveal the extent of adaptive variation across species ranges - and the physiological basis of that adaptation - to know if other species will change as readily as the pine beetle. Ecologists tend to assume that range shifts are the dominant

  18. Effects of grass species and grass growth on atmospheric nitrogen deposition to a bog ecosystem surrounded by intensive agricultural land use

    PubMed Central

    Hurkuck, Miriam; Brümmer, Christian; Mohr, Karsten; Spott, Oliver; Well, Reinhard; Flessa, Heinz; Kutsch, Werner L

    2015-01-01

    We applied a 15N dilution technique called “Integrated Total Nitrogen Input” (ITNI) to quantify annual atmospheric N input into a peatland surrounded by intensive agricultural practices over a 2-year period. Grass species and grass growth effects on atmospheric N deposition were investigated using Lolium multiflorum and Eriophorum vaginatum and different levels of added N resulting in increased biomass production. Plant biomass production was positively correlated with atmospheric N uptake (up to 102.7 mg N pot−1) when using Lolium multiflorum. In contrast, atmospheric N deposition to Eriophorum vaginatum did not show a clear dependency to produced biomass and ranged from 81.9 to 138.2 mg N pot−1. Both species revealed a relationship between atmospheric N input and total biomass N contents. Airborne N deposition varied from about 24 to 55 kg N ha−1 yr−1. Partitioning of airborne N within the monitor system differed such that most of the deposited N was found in roots of Eriophorum vaginatum while the highest share was allocated in aboveground biomass of Lolium multiflorum. Compared to other approaches determining atmospheric N deposition, ITNI showed highest airborne N input and an up to fivefold exceedance of the ecosystem-specific critical load of 5–10 kg N ha−1 yr−1. PMID:26257870

  19. Effects of grass species and grass growth on atmospheric nitrogen deposition to a bog ecosystem surrounded by intensive agricultural land use.

    PubMed

    Hurkuck, Miriam; Brümmer, Christian; Mohr, Karsten; Spott, Oliver; Well, Reinhard; Flessa, Heinz; Kutsch, Werner L

    2015-07-01

    We applied a (15)N dilution technique called "Integrated Total Nitrogen Input" (ITNI) to quantify annual atmospheric N input into a peatland surrounded by intensive agricultural practices over a 2-year period. Grass species and grass growth effects on atmospheric N deposition were investigated using Lolium multiflorum and Eriophorum vaginatum and different levels of added N resulting in increased biomass production. Plant biomass production was positively correlated with atmospheric N uptake (up to 102.7 mg N pot(-1)) when using Lolium multiflorum. In contrast, atmospheric N deposition to Eriophorum vaginatum did not show a clear dependency to produced biomass and ranged from 81.9 to 138.2 mg N pot(-1). Both species revealed a relationship between atmospheric N input and total biomass N contents. Airborne N deposition varied from about 24 to 55 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1). Partitioning of airborne N within the monitor system differed such that most of the deposited N was found in roots of Eriophorum vaginatum while the highest share was allocated in aboveground biomass of Lolium multiflorum. Compared to other approaches determining atmospheric N deposition, ITNI showed highest airborne N input and an up to fivefold exceedance of the ecosystem-specific critical load of 5-10 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1).

  20. Further occurrences of Dohrniphora cornuta (Bigot) (Diptera, Phoridae) in forensic cases indicate likely importance of this species in future cases.

    PubMed

    Disney, R Henry L; Garcia-Rojo, Ana; Lindström, Anders; Manlove, John D

    2014-08-01

    Dohrniphora cornuta (Bigot), an oriental species of scuttle fly, has been transported around the world by man. We report it from forensic cases in England, Spain and Sweden. It is likely to feature in forensic cases elsewhere in the world.

  1. Feeding habits and trophic level of the Panama grunt Pomadasys panamensis, an important bycatch species from the shrimp trawl fishery in the Gulf of California

    SciTech Connect

    Rodriguez-Preciado, Jose A.; Amezcua-Martinez, Felipe; Bellgraph, Brian J.; Madrid-Vera, Juan

    2014-10-14

    The Panama grunt is an abundant and commercially important species in the SE Gulf of California, but the research undertaken on this species is scarce despite its ecological and economic importance. We studied the feeding habits of Panama grunt through stomach content analyses as a first step towards understanding the biology of this species in the study area. Our results show that the Panama grunt is a benthic predator throughout its life cycle and feeds mainly on infaunal crustaceans. Diet differences were not found according to size, diet or season. Shannon diversity index results indicate that Panama grunt have a limited trophic niche breadth with a diet dominated by a limited number of taxa. The estimated trophic level of this species is 3.59. Overall, the Panama grunt is a carnivorous fish occupying the intermediate levels of the trophic pyramid.

  2. Distribution and variability of n-alkanes in epicuticular waxes of sedum species from the central Balkan Peninsula: chemotaxonomic importance.

    PubMed

    Jovanović, Snežana Č; Zlatković, Bojan K; Stojanović, Gordana S

    2015-05-01

    For the first time, the n-alkane distribution and variability of the epicuticular waxes within 22 Sedum taxa was reported with focus on the chemotaxonomy of native Sedum representatives from the central Balkan Peninsula, compared to their relations with four other species of the Crassulaceae family. By GC/MS and GC-FID identification and quantification, it was established that n-alkanes C27 , C29 , C31 , C33 , and C35 were the dominant constituents of the examined epicuticular wax samples. Applying multivariate statistical analyses including agglomerative hierarchical clustering (AHC) and principal component analysis (PCA), the relation according to the n-alkane composition between the examined samples was established. It was shown that the n-alkane variability of the central Balkan Sedum species was considerable and that n-alkanes might not be very reliable taxonomic markers for these species.

  3. Development of RFLP-PCR method for the identification of medically important Aspergillus species using single restriction enzyme MwoI

    PubMed Central

    Diba, K.; Mirhendi, H.; Kordbacheh, P.; Rezaie, S.

    2014-01-01

    In this study we attempted to modify the PCR-RFLP method using restriction enzyme MwoI for the identification of medically important Aspergillus species. Our subjects included nine standard Aspergillus species and 205 Aspergillus isolates of approved hospital acquired infections and hospital indoor sources. First of all, Aspergillus isolates were identified in the level of species by using morphologic method. A twenty four hours culture was performed for each isolates to harvest Aspergillus mycelia and then genomic DNA was extracted using Phenol-Chloroform method. PCR-RFLP using single restriction enzyme MwoI was performed in ITS regions of rDNA gene. The electrophoresis data were analyzed and compared with those of morphologic identifications. Total of 205 Aspergillus isolates included 153 (75%) environmental and 52 (25%) clinical isolates. A. flavus was the most frequently isolate in our study (55%), followed by A. niger 65(31.7%), A. fumigatus 18(8.7%), A. nidulans and A. parasiticus 2(1% each). MwoI enabled us to discriminate eight medically important Aspergillus species including A. fumigatus, A. niger, A. flavus as the most common isolated species. PCR-RFLP method using the restriction enzyme MwoI is a rapid and reliable test for identification of at least the most medically important Aspergillus species. PMID:25242934

  4. Chorismate mutase: an alternatively spliced parasitism gene and a diagnostic marker for three important Globodera nematode species

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The chorismate mutase gene is widely distributed in both cyst and root-knot nematode species and believed to play a critical role in nematode parasitism. In this study, we cloned a new chorismate mutase gene (Gt-cm-1) from Globodera tabacum and further characterized the gene structure in both G. tab...

  5. Interaction between Penaeid Shrimp and Fish Populations in the Gulf of Mexico: Importance of Shrimp as Forage Species

    PubMed Central

    Fujiwara, Masami; Zhou, Can; Acres, Chelsea; Martinez-Andrade, Fernando

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated the contribution of shrimp stocks in supporting the production of valuable predator species. Fishery-independent data on white shrimp, brown shrimp, and selected fish species (spotted seatrout, red drum, and southern flounder) were collected from 1986 to 2014 by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, and converted to catch-per-unit effort (CPUE). Here, the associations between the CPUEs of fish species as predators and those of shrimp species as prey in each sampled bay and sampling season were analyzed using co-integration analysis and Partial Least Squares Regression (PLSR). Co-integration analysis revealed significant associations between 31 of 70 possible fish/shrimp pairings. The analysis also revealed discernible seasonal and spatial patterns. White shrimp in August and brown shrimp in May were associated with fish CPUEs in bays located along the lower coast of Texas, whereas white shrimp in November was more strongly associated with fish CPUEs in bays located on the upper coast. This suggests the possible influence of latitudinal environmental gradient. The results of the PLSR, on the other hand, were not conclusive. This may reflect the high statistical error rates inherent to the analysis of short non-stationary time series. Co-integration is a robust method when analyzing non-stationary time series, and a majority of time series in this study was non-stationary. Based on our co-integration results, we conclude that the CPUE data show significant associations between shrimp abundance and the three predator fish species in the tested regions. PMID:27832213

  6. Interaction between Penaeid Shrimp and Fish Populations in the Gulf of Mexico: Importance of Shrimp as Forage Species.

    PubMed

    Fujiwara, Masami; Zhou, Can; Acres, Chelsea; Martinez-Andrade, Fernando

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated the contribution of shrimp stocks in supporting the production of valuable predator species. Fishery-independent data on white shrimp, brown shrimp, and selected fish species (spotted seatrout, red drum, and southern flounder) were collected from 1986 to 2014 by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, and converted to catch-per-unit effort (CPUE). Here, the associations between the CPUEs of fish species as predators and those of shrimp species as prey in each sampled bay and sampling season were analyzed using co-integration analysis and Partial Least Squares Regression (PLSR). Co-integration analysis revealed significant associations between 31 of 70 possible fish/shrimp pairings. The analysis also revealed discernible seasonal and spatial patterns. White shrimp in August and brown shrimp in May were associated with fish CPUEs in bays located along the lower coast of Texas, whereas white shrimp in November was more strongly associated with fish CPUEs in bays located on the upper coast. This suggests the possible influence of latitudinal environmental gradient. The results of the PLSR, on the other hand, were not conclusive. This may reflect the high statistical error rates inherent to the analysis of short non-stationary time series. Co-integration is a robust method when analyzing non-stationary time series, and a majority of time series in this study was non-stationary. Based on our co-integration results, we conclude that the CPUE data show significant associations between shrimp abundance and the three predator fish species in the tested regions.

  7. Early life history pelagic exposure profiles of selected commercially important fish species in the Gulf of Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Doyle, Miriam J.; Mier, Kathryn L.

    2016-10-01

    A synthesis of nearly four decades of ichthyoplankton survey data from the Gulf of Alaska was undertaken to provide the most comprehensive information available on the early life history ecology of five focal species: Pacific Cod (Gadus macrocephalus), Walleye Pollock (Gadus chalcogrammus), Pacific Ocean Perch (Sebastes alutus), Sablefish (Anoplopoma fimbria), and Arrowtooth Flounder (Atheresthes stomias). This analysis of historical data, along with information from published studies, is presented here in the form of ecological reviews of the species during their planktonic phase. The reviews include descriptions of temporal and spatial patterns of exposure to the environment, and interpretation regarding associated sensitivities to environmental forcing. On a temporal scale, patterns in abundance of eggs and larvae are synthesized that characterize seasonal exposure to the pelagic environment, and interannual variation that is presumed to incorporate responses to long-term environmental forcing. Spatial patterns are synthesized to identify horizontal and vertical extent of egg and larval distributions, delineate areas of primary larval habitat, and illuminate egg and larval drift pathways. The observed patterns are discussed with respect to characterizing species early life history strategies, identifying long-term adaptations to the Gulf of Alaska environment, and associated resilience and vulnerability factors that may modulate early life responses to environmental forcing in this region. For each species, gaps in knowledge are identified and are concerned primarily with the period of transition between the larval and juvenile stage, and feeding habits and ecology across seasons, habitats and sub-intervals of early ontogeny. These early life history reviews advance our ecological understanding of the pelagic phase, and fine-tune our focus for the investigation of potential response mechanisms to environmental forcing at appropriate, species-specific temporal

  8. Evolution of the teachings of chemistry in the new degrees of School of Agricultural Engineering and its importance in the acquisition of competencies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arce, Augusto; Tarquis, Ana M.; Castellanos, Maria Teresa; Requejo, Maria Isabel; Cartagena, Maria Carmen

    2014-05-01

    The academic year 2012-13 is the third year of implementation of the Bologna process in ETSI Agricultural for the subjects Chemistry I and Chemistry II in the new four Degrees: Graduate in Engineering and Agricultural Science, Food Engineering Graduate, Graduate in Engineering Environmental and Biotechnology graduate. We have implemented new interactive methodologies in the teaching-learning process based on the use of the virtual platform of the UPM, and teaching support materials and new laboratory practice developing has. It has also launched new continuous assessment systems that promote active student participation. A comparative study of academic achievements by students of the new grades in the subjects of chemistry during the last three academic years was performed to correlating the results obtained, the success rate and the drop out, and compare with the level of prior knowledge to those entering students. Possible solutions to try and fix these results in future courses are proposed Finally, the general competencies that contribute this course, how they are acquired and how they should be evaluated correctly are indicated. Acknowledgments: Innovation educative projects Nº IE02054-11/12 UPM. 2012

  9. Organic aerosols and inorganic species from post-harvest agricultural-waste burning emissions over northern India: impact on mass absorption efficiency of elemental carbon.

    PubMed

    Rajput, Prashant; Sarin, M M; Sharma, Deepti; Singh, Darshan

    2014-01-01

    Atmospheric PM2.5 (particulate matter with aerodynamic diameter of ≤ 2.5 μm), collected from a source region [Patiala: 30.2 °N; 76.3 °E; 250 m above mean sea level] of emissions from post-harvest agricultural-waste (paddy-residue) burning in the Indo-Gangetic Plain (IGP), North India, has been studied for its chemical composition and impact on regional atmospheric radiative forcing. On average, organic aerosol mass accounts for 63% of PM2.5, whereas the contribution of elemental carbon (EC) is ∼3.5%. Sulphate, nitrate and ammonium contribute up to ∼85% of the total water-soluble inorganic species (WSIS), which constitutes ∼23% of PM2.5. The potassium-to-organic carbon ratio from paddy-residue burning emissions (KBB(+)/OC: 0.05 ± 0.01) is quite similar to that reported from Amazonian and Savanna forest-fires; whereas non-sea-salt-sulphate-to-OC ratio (nss-SO4(2-)/OC: 0.21) and nss-SO4(2-)/EC ratio of 2.6 are significantly higher (by factor of 5 to 8). The mass absorption efficiency of EC (3.8 ± 1.3 m(2) g(-1)) shows significant decrease with a parallel increase in the concentrations of organic aerosols and scattering species (sulphate and nitrate). A cross plot of OC/EC and nss-SO4(2-)/EC ratios show distinct differences for post-harvest burning emissions from paddy-residue as compared to those from fossil-fuel combustion sources in south-east Asia.

  10. Comparing the historic olive trees (Olea europaea L.) of Santa Cruz with contemporaneous trees in the Santa Barbara, CA area: a case study of diversity and structure in an introduced agricultural species conserved in situ

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Historic populations of crop species outside their centers of origin and diversity, like the domestic olive (Olea europaea L.) in North America, are genetic resources for contemporary agriculture, including genotypes that could be adapted to, local conditions. The primary goal of this study was to d...

  11. The effect of starvation on the larval behavior of two forensically important species of blow flies (Diptera: Calliphoridae).

    PubMed

    Singh, Devinder; Bala, Madhu

    2009-12-15

    The postfeeding larval stage in blow flies is generally an irreversible condition when the fully grown third instar larvae stop feeding and give no response towards food. The larvae of most species then disperse away from their feeding medium and pupariate. There are several cases reported about the use of postfeeding larvae as forensic evidence. It is a matter of common observation that the postfeeding stage can be reached earlier than the expected time if food becomes unavailable. However, no information is available on whether postfeeding stage induced by scarcity of food is also irreversible. Similarly, the minimum period of development required by the larvae of different blow flies species to enable their survival as postfeeding larvae and pupariation in the absence of food is unknown. It was observed during the present studies that the larvae of two Chrysomya species must feed for at least 35 h at 28 degrees C in order to be capable of reaching the postfeeding stage and subsequent pupariation. Duration of the starvation period required to induce postfeeding behavior decreases with increasing age of larvae. In the case of Chrysomya megacephala, 35, 45, 55 and 65 h old larvae attained irreversible postfeeding stage after 30, 20, 12 and 2 h of starvation, respectively. Similarly, larvae of Chrysomya rufifacies that were 35, 45, 55 and 60 h old attained irreversible postfeeding stage after 25, 16, 6 and 2 h of starvation, respectively.

  12. The importance of ultraviolet and near-infrared sensitivity for visual discrimination in two species of lacertid lizards.

    PubMed

    Martin, Mélissa; Le Galliard, Jean-François; Meylan, Sandrine; Loew, Ellis R

    2015-02-01

    Male and female Lacertid lizards often display conspicuous coloration that is involved in intraspecific communication. However, visual systems of Lacertidae have rarely been studied and the spectral sensitivity of their retinal photoreceptors remains unknown. Here, we characterise the spectral sensitivity of two Lacertid species from contrasting habitats: the wall lizard Podarcis muralis and the common lizard Zootoca vivipara. Both species possess a pure-cone retina with one spectral class of double cones and four spectral classes of single cones. The two species differ in the spectral sensitivity of the LWS cones, the relative abundance of UVS single cones (potentially more abundant in Z. vivipara) and the coloration of oil droplets. Wall lizards have pure vitamin A1-based photopigments, whereas common lizards possess mixed vitamin A1 and A2 photopigments, extending spectral sensitivity into the near infrared, which is a rare feature in terrestrial vertebrates. We found that spectral sensitivity in the UV and near infrared improves discrimination of small variations in throat coloration among Z. vivipara. Thus, retinal specialisations optimise chromatic resolution in common lizards, indicating that the visual system and visual signals might co-evolve.

  13. Use of the CO I Gene as a Species Indicator for Forensically Important Flies: A Forensic Entomology Laboratory Exercise

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Honda, Jeffrey Y.

    2008-01-01

    Forensic entomologists utilize insects (particularly flies) to establish the time interval between death and body discovery. This important piece of information may answer questions as to the circumstances of the individual's death and insects are now routinely utilized and recognized as being important forensic indicators. Of extreme importance…

  14. A comparison of gravid and under-house CO2-baited CDC light traps for mosquito species of public health importance in Houston, Texas.

    PubMed

    White, Stephanie L; Ward, Michael P; Budke, Christine M; Cyr, Tracy; Bueno, Rudy

    2009-11-01

    The relative efficacy of gravid and under-house CO2 traps for monitoring mosquito species of public health importance within the Houston metroplex area was assessed. Gravid and under-house traps were colocated at 10 sites and monitored weekly between 1 March to 31 May 2007. The most numerous species caught was Culex pipiens quinquefasciatus Say. Other species of public health importance caught in gravid and under-house traps included Culex restuans Theobald, Aedes aegypti (L.), and Aedes albopictus Skuse. Adjusting for the week of collection, gravid traps caught significantly more mosquitoes (mean 23.1 per trap) in the study area than under-house traps (mean 3.6 per trap). However, under-house traps caught a greater variety of mosquito species (13) than gravid traps (11). Gravid and under-house traps only caught nine of 15 of the same mosquito species during the study period. In this study area, gravid traps should be used as the primary method of surveillance for mosquito-borne diseases of public health importance during the early part of the season, because of greater catch numbers of mosquitoes that pose a public health risk.

  15. Occurrence of two myxosporean species, Myxobolus hakyi sp. n. and Hoferellus pulvinatus sp. n., in Pangasianodon hypophthalmus fry imported from Thailand to Europe as ornamental fish.

    PubMed

    Baska, Ferenc; Voronin, V N; Eszterbauer, Edit; Müller, Linda; Marton, Szilvia; Molnár, Kálmán

    2009-10-01

    Fingerlings of the sutchi catfish Pangasianodon hypophthalmus, a favorite food fish in South Asia, is regularly imported by European fish traders and sold in pet fish shops. In shipments from Thailand, a skin and a kidney infection of this fish caused by myxosporean parasites was found both in Hungary and Russia. In the skin of the fish, small millet-sized nodules containing great numbers of a Myxobolus species were found, while in the renal glomeruli, spores and sporogonic stages of a Hoferellus species developed. The skin-infecting species described as Myxobolus hakyi sp. n. had 15.9 x 6.6-microm-sized spores with elongated polar capsules, while the renal species described as Hoferellus pulvinatus sp. n. had roundish spores with a size of 6.5 x 5.0 microm and had a characteristic pillow-like structure at its posterior end. Besides morphology, histology of infection and 18S rDNA sequences were studied.

  16. Sequences of the cytochrome C oxidase subunit I (COI) gene are suitable for species identification of Korean Calliphorinae flies of forensic importance (Diptera: Calliphoridae).

    PubMed

    Park, Seong Hwan; Zhang, Yong; Piao, Huguo; Yu, Dong Ha; Jeong, Hyun Ju; Yoo, Ga Young; Jo, Tae-Ho; Hwang, Juck-Joon

    2009-09-01

    Calliphorinae fly species are important indicators of the postmortem interval especially during early spring and late fall in Korea. Although nucleotide sequences of various Calliphorinae fly species are available, there has been no research on the cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) nucleotide sequences of Korean Calliphorinae flies. Here, we report the full-length sequences of the COI gene of four Calliphorinae fly species collected in Korea (five individuals of Calliphora vicina, five Calliphora lata, four Triceratopyga calliphoroides and three Aldrichina grahami). Each COI gene was amplified by polymerase chain reaction and directly sequenced and the resulting nucleotide sequences were aligned and analyzed by MEGA4 software. The results indicate that COI nucleotide sequences can be used to distinguish between these four species. Our phylogenetic result coincides with recent taxonomic views on the subfamily Calliphorinae in that the genera Aldrichina and Triceratopyga are nested within the genus Calliphora.

  17. Niche Partitioning in Three Sympatric Congeneric Species of Dragonfly, Orthetrum chrysostigma, O. coerulescens anceps, and O. nitidinerve: The Importance of Microhabitat

    PubMed Central

    Khelifa, Rassim; Zebsa, Rabah; Moussaoui, Abdelkrim; Kahalerras, Amin; Bensouilah, Soufyane; Mahdjoub, Hayat

    2013-01-01

    Habitat heterogeneity has been shown to promote co-existence of closely related species. Based on this concept, a field study was conducted on the niche partitioning of three territorial congeneric species of skimmers (Anisoptera: Libellulidae) in Northeast Algeria during the breeding season of 2011. According to their size, there is a descending hierarchy between Orthetrum nitidinerve Sélys, O. chrysostigma (Burmeister), and O. coerulescens anceps (Schneider). After being marked and surveyed, the two latter species had the same breeding behavior sequence. Knowing that they had almost the same size, such species could not co-occur in the same habitat according to the competitive exclusion principle. The spatial distribution of the three species was investigated at two different microhabitats, and it was found that these two species were actually isolated at this scale. O. chrysostigma and O. nitidinerve preferred open areas, while O. c. anceps occurred in highly vegetated waters. This study highlights the role of microhabitat in community structure as an important niche axis that maintains closely related species in the same habitat. PMID:24219357

  18. Niche partitioning in three sympatric congeneric species of dragonfly, Orthetrum chrysostigma, O. coerulescens anceps, and O. nitidinerve: the importance of microhabitat.

    PubMed

    Khelifa, Rassim; Zebsa, Rabah; Moussaoui, Abdelkrim; Kahalerras, Amin; Bensouilah, Soufyane; Mahdjoub, Hayat

    2013-01-01

    Habitat heterogeneity has been shown to promote co-existence of closely related species. Based on this concept, a field study was conducted on the niche partitioning of three territorial congeneric species of skimmers (Anisoptera: Libellulidae) in Northeast Algeria during the breeding season of 2011. According to their size, there is a descending hierarchy between Orthetrum nitidinerve Sélys, O. chrysostigma (Burmeister), and O. coerulescens anceps (Schneider). After being marked and surveyed, the two latter species had the same breeding behavior sequence. Knowing that they had almost the same size, such species could not co-occur in the same habitat according to the competitive exclusion principle. The spatial distribution of the three species was investigated at two different microhabitats, and it was found that these two species were actually isolated at this scale. O. chrysostigma and O. nitidinerve preferred open areas, while O. c. anceps occurred in highly vegetated waters. This study highlights the role of microhabitat in community structure as an important niche axis that maintains closely related species in the same habitat.

  19. Plant or fungal-produced conophthorin as an important component of host plant volatile-based attractants for agricultural lepidopteran insect pests

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Conophthorin (7-methyl-1,6-dioxaspiro[4.5]decane) is a semiochemical common to numerous coleopteran and hymenopteran insects, and possess varying semiochemical behavior among these species. Conophthorin has recently gained attention as a semiochemical for navel orangeworm, Amyelois transitella (Lepi...

  20. Catalog of the coleoptera of America north of Nexico. (Family: silphidae). Agriculture handbook (Research)

    SciTech Connect

    Peck, S.B.; Miller, S.E.

    1993-09-01

    Many species of beetles are important pests of agricultural crops, stored food products, forests, wood products and structures, and fabrics. Many other species, in contrast, are beneficial in the biological suppression of pest arthropods and weeds, as well as in the decomposition of plant detritus, animal carcasses, and dung. Part of our national responsibility to American agriculture is to provide correct identification of species of American beetles so that appropriate controls can be applied.

  1. Genetic Differentiation of the Western Capercaillie Highlights the Importance of South-Eastern Europe for Understanding the Species Phylogeography

    PubMed Central

    Ballian, Dalibor; Kunovac, Saša; Zubić, Goran; Grubešić, Marijan; Zhelev, Petar; Paule, Ladislav; Grebenc, Tine; Kraigher, Hojka

    2011-01-01

    The Western Capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus L.) is a grouse species of open boreal or high altitude forests of Eurasia. It is endangered throughout most mountain range habitat areas in Europe. Two major genetically identifiable lineages of Western Capercaillie have been described to date: the southern lineage at the species' southernmost range of distribution in Europe, and the boreal lineage. We address the question of genetic differentiation of capercaillie populations from the Rhodope and Rila Mountains in Bulgaria, across the Dinaric Mountains to the Slovenian Alps. The two lineages' contact zone and resulting conservation strategies in this so-far understudied area of distribution have not been previously determined. The results of analysis of mitochondrial DNA control region sequences of 319 samples from the studied populations show that Alpine populations were composed exclusively of boreal lineage; Dinaric populations of both, but predominantly (96%) of boreal lineage; and Rhodope-Rila populations predominantly (>90%) of southern lineage individuals. The Bulgarian mountains were identified as the core area of the southern lineage, and the Dinaric Mountains as the western contact zone between both lineages in the Balkans. Bulgarian populations appeared genetically distinct from Alpine and Dinaric populations and exhibited characteristics of a long-term stationary population, suggesting that they should be considered as a glacial relict and probably a distinct subspecies. Although all of the studied populations suffered a decline in the past, the significantly lower level of genetic diversity when compared with the neighbouring Alpine and Bulgarian populations suggests that the isolated Dinaric capercaillie is particularly vulnerable to continuing population decline. The results are discussed in the context of conservation of the species in the Balkans, its principal threats and legal protection status. Potential conservation strategies should consider the

  2. A new compilation of stomach content data for commercially important pelagic fish species in the northeast Atlantic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinnegar, J. K.; Goñi, N.; Trenkel, V. M.; Arrizabalaga, H.; Melle, W.; Keating, J.; Óskarsson, G.

    2015-02-01

    There is increasing demand for information on predator-prey interactions in the ocean as a result of legislative commitments aimed at achieving sustainable exploitation. However, comprehensive data sets are lacking for many fish species and this has hampered development of multispecies fisheries models and the formulation of effective food-web indicators. This work describes a new compilation of stomach content data for five pelagic fish species (herring, blue whiting, mackerel, albacore and bluefin tuna) sampled across the northeast Atlantic and submitted to the PANGAEA open-access data portal (www.pangaea.de). We provide detailed descriptions of sample origin and of the corresponding database structures. We describe the main results in terms of diet composition and predator-prey relationships. The feeding preferences of small pelagic fish (herring, blue whiting, mackerel) were sampled over a very broad geographic area within the North Atlantic basin, from Greenland in the west, to the Lofoten Islands in the east and from the Bay of Biscay northwards to the Arctic. This analysis revealed significant differences in the prey items selected in different parts of the region at different times of year. Tunas (albacore and bluefin) were sampled in the Bay of Biscay and Celtic Sea. Dominant prey items for these species varied by location, year and season. This data compilation exercise represents one of the largest and most wide-ranging ever attempted for pelagic fish in the North Atlantic. The earliest data included in the database were collected in 1864, whereas the most recent were collected in 2012. Data sets are available at doi:10.1594/PANGAEA.820041 and doi:10.1594/PANGAEA.826992.

  3. A new compilation of stomach content data for commercially-important pelagic fish species in the Northeast Atlantic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pinnegar, J. K.; Goñi, N.; Trenkel, V. M.; Arrizabalaga, H.; Melle, W.; Keating, J.; Óskarsson, G.

    2014-04-01

    There is increasing demand for information on predator-prey interactions in the ocean as a result of legislative commitments aimed at achieving sustainable exploitation. However, comprehensive datasets are lacking for many fish species and this has hampered development of multispecies fisheries models and the formulation of effective food-web indicators. This work describes a new compilation of stomach content data for five pelagic fish species (herring, blue whiting, mackerel, albacore and bluefin tuna) sampled across the northeast Atlantic and submitted to the PANGAEA open-access data portal (www.pangaea.de). We provide detailed descriptions of sample origin and of the corresponding database structures. We describe the main results in terms of diet composition and predator-prey relationships. The feeding preferences of small pelagic fish (herring, blue whiting, mackerel) were sampled over a very broad geographic area within the North Atlantic basin, from Greenland in the west, to the Lofoten Islands in the east and from the Bay of Biscay northwards to the Arctic. This analysis revealed significant differences in the prey items selected in different parts of the region at different times of year. Tunas (albacore and bluefin) were sampled in the Bay of Biscay and Celtic Sea. Dominant prey items for these species varied by location, year and season. This data compilation exercise represents one of the largest and most wide-ranging ever attempted for pelagic fish in the north Atlantic. The earliest data included in the database were collected in 1864, whereas the most recent were collected in 2012.Datasets are available at doi:10.1594/PANGAEA.820041 and doi:10.1594/PANGAEA.826992.

  4. The Importance of Interspecific Interactions on the Present Range of the Invasive Mosquito Aedes albopictus (Diptera: Culicidae) and Persistence of Resident Container Species in the United States.

    PubMed

    Fader, Joseph E

    2016-09-01

    Aedes albopictus (Skuse) established in the United States over 30 yr ago and quickly spread throughout the entire eastern half of the country. It has recently spread into western regions and projected climate change scenarios suggest continued expansion to the west and north. Aedes albopictus has had major impacts on, and been impacted by, a diverse array of resident mosquito species. Laying eggs at the edges of small, water-holding containers, hatched larvae develop within these containers feeding on detritus-based resources. Under limited resource conditions, Ae. albopictus has been shown to be a superior competitor to essentially all native and resident species in the United States. Adult males also mate interspecifically with at least one resident species with significant negative impacts on reproductive output for susceptible females. Despite these strong interference effects on sympatric species, competitor outcomes have been highly variable, ranging from outright local exclusion by Ae. albopictus, to apparent exclusion of Ae. albopictus in the presence of the same species. Context-dependent mechanisms that alter the relative strengths of inter- and intraspecific competition, as well as rapid evolution of satyrization-resistant females, may help explain these patterns of variable coexistence. Although there is a large body of research on interspecific interactions of Ae. albopictus in the United States, there remain substantial gaps in our understanding of the most important species interactions. Addressing these gaps is important in predicting the future distribution of this species and understanding consequences for resident species, including humans, that interact with this highly invasive mosquito.

  5. Sequencer-Based Capillary Gel Electrophoresis (SCGE) Targeting the rDNA Internal Transcribed Spacer (ITS) Regions for Accurate Identification of Clinically Important Yeast Species

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Sharon C.-A.; Wang, He; Zhang, Li; Fan, Xin; Xu, Zhi-Peng; Cheng, Jing-Wei; Kong, Fanrong; Zhao, Yu-Pei; Xu, Ying-Chun

    2016-01-01

    Accurate species identification of Candida, Cryptococcus, Trichosporon and other yeast pathogens is important for clinical management. In the present study, we developed and evaluated a yeast species identification scheme by determining the rDNA internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region length types (LTs) using a sequencer-based capillary gel electrophoresis (SCGE) approach. A total of 156 yeast isolates encompassing 32 species were first used to establish a reference SCGE ITS LT database. Evaluation of the ITS LT database was then performed on (i) a separate set of (n = 97) clinical isolates by SCGE, and (ii) 41 isolates of 41 additional yeast species from GenBank by in silico analysis. Of 156 isolates used to build the reference database, 41 ITS LTs were identified, which correctly identified 29 of the 32 (90.6%) species, with the exception of Trichosporon asahii, Trichosporon japonicum and Trichosporon asteroides. In addition, eight of the 32 species revealed different electropherograms and were subtyped into 2–3 different ITS LTs each. Of the 97 test isolates used to evaluate the ITS LT scheme, 96 (99.0%) were correctly identified to species level, with the remaining isolate having a novel ITS LT. Of the additional 41 isolates for in silico analysis, none was misidentified by the ITS LT database except for Trichosporon mucoides whose ITS LT profile was identical to that of Trichosporon dermatis. In conclusion, yeast identification by the present SCGE ITS LT assay is a fast, reproducible and accurate alternative for the identification of clinically important yeasts with the exception of Trichosporon species. PMID:27105313

  6. Importance of leaf anatomy in determining mesophyll diffusion conductance to CO2 across species: quantitative limitations and scaling up by models

    PubMed Central

    Tomás, Magdalena; Flexas, Jaume; Copolovici, Lucian; Galmés, Jeroni; Hallik, Lea; Medrano, Hipólito; Ribas-Carbó, Miquel; Tosens, Tiina; Vislap, Vivian; Niinemets, Ülo

    2013-01-01

    Foliage photosynthetic and structural traits were studied in 15 species with a wide range of foliage anatomies to gain insight into the importance of key anatomical traits in the limitation of diffusion of CO2 from substomatal cavities to chloroplasts. The relative importance of different anatomical traits in constraining CO2 diffusion was evaluated using a quantitative model. Mesophyll conductance (g m) was most strongly correlated with chloroplast exposed surface to leaf area ratio (S c/S) and cell wall thickness (T cw), but, depending on foliage structure, the overall importance of g m in constraining photosynthesis and the importance of different anatomical traits in the restriction of CO2 diffusion varied. In species with mesophytic leaves, membrane permeabilities and cytosol and stromal conductance dominated the variation in g m. However, in species with sclerophytic leaves, g m was mostly limited by T cw. These results demonstrate the major role of anatomy in constraining mesophyll diffusion conductance and, consequently, in determining the variability in photosynthetic capacity among species. PMID:23564954

  7. The importance (or lack thereof) of niche divergence to the maintenance of a northern species complex: the case of the long-toed salamander (Ambystoma macrodactylum Baird).

    PubMed

    Lee-Yaw, J A; Irwin, D E

    2015-04-01

    The relative importance of ecological vs. non-ecological factors for the origin and maintenance of species is an open question in evolutionary biology. Young lineages--such as the distinct genetic groups that make up the ranges of many northern species--represent an opportunity to study the importance of ecological divergence during the early stages of diversification. Yet, few studies have examined the extent of niche divergence between lineages in previously glaciated regions and the role of ecology in maintaining the contact zones between them. In this study, we used tests of niche overlap in combination with ecological niche models to explore the extent of niche divergence between lineages of the long-toed salamander (Ambystoma macrodactylum Baird) species complex and to determine whether contact zones correspond to (divergent) niche limits. We found limited evidence for niche divergence between the different long-toed salamander lineages, substantial overlap in the predicted distribution of suitable climatic space for all lineages and range limits that are independent of niche limits. These results raise questions as to the importance of ecological divergence to the development of this widespread species complex and highlight the potential for non-ecological factors to play a more important role in the maintenance of northern taxa.

  8. Comparison of toxaphene congeners levels in five seal species from eastern Canada: what is the importance of biological factors?

    PubMed

    Gouteux, Bruno; Lebeuf, Michel; Hammill, Mike O; Muir, Derek C G; Gagné, Jean-Pierre

    2005-03-15

    Environmentally relevant chlorobornanes (CHBs) were measured in blubber samples of harbor (Phoca vitulina), gray (Halichoerus grypus), harp (Phoca groenlandica), and hooded seals (Cystophora cristata) sampled in different part of the St. Lawrence marine ecosystem (SLME) and ringed seals (Phoca hispida) sampled in the eastern Canadian Arctic waters. The purpose of this study was to compare the levels of six CHBs (Parlar-26, -40/-41, -44, -50, and -62) among the five seal species. Seal species could be separated into three groups based on their respective sigmaCHB mean concentrations (+/-standard error): gray (49+/-3.9 ng/g lipid weight) and harbor (80+/-20 ng/g lipid weight) seals were more contaminated than ringed seals (18+/-7.6 ng/g lipid weight) but less contaminated than harp (370+/-87 ng/g lipid weight) and hooded (680+/-310 ng/g lipid weight) seals. These differences are not expected to be related to different sources of toxaphene contamination, since both the SLME and the eastern Canadian Arctic environments are thought to be mainly contaminated via atmospheric transportfrom the southeastern part of the United States. Thus, biological factors such as sex, age, nutritive condition, metabolism capacity, and diet of the animals collected were considered. Results reported in this study indicated that the diet is likely the main factor accounting for interspecies variations in toxaphene contamination in seals from eastern Canada.

  9. The first complete mitochondrial genome of a Belostomatidae species, Lethocerus indicus, the giant water bug: An important edible insect.

    PubMed

    Devi, Kshetrimayum Miranda; Shantibala, Tourangbam; Debaraj, Hajarimayum

    2016-10-10

    Lethocerus indicus of the family Belostomatidae is one of the most preferred and delicious edible insects in different parts of South-East Asia including North-East, India. The mitogenome of L. indicus represents the first complete mitogenome sequence of a Belostomatidae species in Heteroptera order. The mitogenome of L. indicus is 16,251bp and contains 37 genes including 13 protein coding genes (PCGs), 22 tRNA genes, two rRNA genes, and a large non-coding region. The genome has a typical gene order which is identical to other Heteroptera species. All tRNAs exhibit the classic cloverleaf secondary structure except tRNASer (AGN). All the PCGs employ a complete translation termination codon either TAA or TAG except COII. The nucleotide composition showed heavy biased toward AT accounting to 70.9% of total mitogenome. The overall A+T content of L. indicus mitogenome was comparatively lower than some other Heteropteran bugs mitogenomes. The control region is divided into seven different parts which includes the putative stem loop, repeats, tandem repeats, GC and AT rich regions. The phylogenetic relationship based on maximum-likelihood method using all protein coding genes was congruent with the traditional morphological classification that Belostomatidae is closely related to Nepidae. The complete mitogenome sequence of L. indicus provides fundamental data useful in conservation genetics and aquaculture diversification.

  10. Assessing the relative importance of environmental effects, carry-over effects and species differences in thermal stress resistance: a comparison of Drosophilids across field and laboratory generations.

    PubMed

    Schiffer, Michele; Hangartner, Sandra; Hoffmann, Ary A

    2013-10-15

    There is increasing interest in comparing species of related organisms for their susceptibility to thermal extremes in order to evaluate potential vulnerability to climate change. Comparisons are typically undertaken on individuals collected from the field with or without a period of acclimation. However, this approach does not allow the potential contributions of environmental and carry-over effects across generations to be separated from inherent species differences in susceptibility. To assess the importance of these different sources of variation, we here considered heat and cold resistance in Drosophilid species from tropical and temperate sites in the field and across two laboratory generations. Resistance in field-collected individuals tended to be lower when compared with F1 and F2 laboratory generations, and species differences in field flies were only weakly correlated to differences established under controlled rearing conditions, unlike in F1-F2 comparisons. This reflected large environmental effects on resistance associated with different sites and conditions experienced within sites. For the 8 h cold recovery assay there was no strong evidence of carry-over effects, whereas for the heat knockdown and 2 h cold recovery assays there was some evidence for such effects. However, for heat these were species specific in direction. Variance components for inherent species differences were substantial for resistance to heat and 8 h cold stress, but small for 2 h cold stress, though this may be a reflection of the species being considered in the comparisons. These findings highlight that inherent differences among species are difficult to characterise accurately without controlling for environmental sources of variation and carry-over effects. Moreover, they also emphasise the complex nature of carry-over effects that vary depending on the nature of stress traits and the species being evaluated.

  11. Species-Specific Thiol-Disulfide Equilibrium Constant: A Tool To Characterize Redox Transitions of Biological Importance.

    PubMed

    Mirzahosseini, Arash; Somlyay, Máté; Noszál, Béla

    2015-08-13

    Microscopic redox equilibrium constants, a new species-specific type of physicochemical parameters, were introduced and determined to quantify thiol-disulfide equilibria of biological significance. The thiol-disulfide redox equilibria of glutathione with cysteamine, cysteine, and homocysteine were approached from both sides, and the equilibrium mixtures were analyzed by quantitative NMR methods to characterize the highly composite, co-dependent acid-base and redox equilibria. The directly obtained, pH-dependent, conditional constants were then decomposed by a new evaluation method, resulting in pH-independent, microscopic redox equilibrium constants for the first time. The 80 different, microscopic redox equilibrium constant values show close correlation with the respective thiolate basicities and provide sound means for the development of potent agents against oxidative stress.

  12. Ecological and Cultural Importance of a Species at Risk of Extinction, Pacific Lamprey, 1964-2002 Technical Report.

    SciTech Connect

    Close, David A.

    2002-07-01

    The cultural and ecological values of Pacific lamprey (Lampetra tridentata) have not been understood by Euro-Americans and thus their great decline has almost gone unnoticed except by Native Americans, who elevated the issue and initiated research to restore its populations, at least in the Columbia Basin. They regard Pacific lamprey as a highly valued resource and as a result ksuyas (lamprey) has become one of their cultural icons. Ksuyas are harvested to this day as a subsistence food by various tribes along the Pacific coast and are highly regarded for their cultural value. Interestingly, our review suggests that the Pacific lamprey plays an important role in the food web, may have acted as a buffer for salmon from predators, and may have been an important source of marine nutrients to oligotrophic watersheds. This is very different from the Euro-American perception that lampreys are pests. We suggest that cultural biases affected management policies.

  13. Phylogenetic analyses of RPB1 and RPB2 support a middle Cretaceous origin for a clade comprising all agriculturally and medically important fusaria

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Fusarium (Hypocreales, Nectriaceae) is one of the most economically important and systematically challenging groups of mycotoxigenic phytopathogens and emergent human pathogens. We conducted maximum likelihood (ML), maximum parsimony (MP) and Bayesian (B) analyses on partial RNA polymerase largest (...

  14. Temporal variation in the prevalence and species richness of Campylobacter spp. in a prairie watershed impacted by urban and agricultural mixed inputs.

    PubMed

    Tambalo, Dinah D; Boa, Tyler; Aryal, Bijaya; Yost, Christopher K

    2016-05-01

    Campylobacter spp. are a substantial cause of gastroenteritis worldwide. Human infection can result from ingestion of contaminated food or water from a variety of sources, including the consumption of fresh produce that is contaminated with the pathogen via the use of contaminated irrigation water. Using molecular methods, we investigated the occurrence of Campylobacter in the Qu'Appelle River watershed, an important source of irrigation water for vegetable producers in southern Saskatchewan, Canada. Water samples were collected from 7 sampling sites from April to September 2009 (145 samples), and from 5 sampling sites from May to October 2013 (116 samples). Campylobacter was detected in 57% and 16% of the samples collected in 2009 and 2013, respectively. Campylobacter detection was highest in May and June for both sampling years. In 2009, the predominant species were Campylobacter lari and Campylobacter jejuni, with prevalences of 84% and 41%, respectively. Other Campylobacter spp. were detected less frequently. Only C. lari was detected in 2013. The results in 2009 demonstrate the species richness of Campylobacter in water sources within the watershed. The occurrence of Campylobacter in the study area also underscores the importance of monitoring irrigation water used to irrigate fresh produce from a public health prospective.

  15. A rigorous detection of interstellar CH3NCO: An important missing species in astrochemical networks⋆,⋆⋆

    PubMed Central

    Cernicharo, J.; Kisiel, Z.; Tercero, B.; Kolesniková, L.; Medvedev, I.R.; López, A.; Fortman, S.; Winnewisser, M.; de Lucia, F. C.; Alonso, J. L.; Guillemin, J.-C.

    2016-01-01

    The recent analysis of the composition of the frozen surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko has revealed a significant number of complex organic molecules. Methyl isocyanate (CH3NCO) is one of the more abundant species detected on the comet surface. In this work we report extensive characterization of its rotational spectrum resulting in a list of 1269 confidently assigned laboratory lines and its detection in space towards the Orion clouds where 399 lines of the molecule have been unambiguously identified. We find that the limited mm-wave laboratory data reported prior to our work require some revision. The abundance of CH3NCO in Orion is only a factor of ten below those of HNCO and CH3CN. Unlike the molecular abundances in the coma of comets, which correlate with those of warm molecular clouds, molecular abundances in the gas phase in Orion are only weakly correlated with those measured on the comet surface. We also compare our abundances with those derived recently for this molecule towards Sgr B2 (Halfen et al. 2015). A more accurate abundance of CH3NCO is provided for this cloud based on our extensive laboratory work. PMID:27274565

  16. Mercury contamination in fish in midcontinent great rivers of the united states: Importance of species traits and environmental factors

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Walters, D.M.; Blocksom, K.A.; Lazorchak, J.M.; Jicha, T.; Angradi, T.R.; Bolgrien, D.W.

    2010-01-01

    We measured mercury (Hg) concentrations in whole fish from the Upper Mississippi, Missouri, and Ohio Rivers to characterize the extent and magnitude of Hg contamination and to identify environmental factors influencing Hg accumulation. Concentrations were generally lower (80% of values between 20?200 ng g1 wet weight) than those reported for other regions (e.g., upper Midwest and Northeast U.S.). Mercury exceeded the risk threshold for belted kingfisher (Ceryle alcyon, the most sensitive species considered) in 33?75% of river length and 1?7% of river length for humans. Concentrations were lower in the Missouri than in the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers, consistent with continental-scale patterns in atmospheric Hg deposition. Body size and trophic guild were the best predictors of Hg concentrations, which were highest in large-bodied top predators. Site geochemical and landscape properties were weakly related with fish Hg. Moreover, relationships often ran contrary to conventional wisdom, and the slopes of the relationships (positive or negative) were inconsistent among fish guilds and rivers. For example, sulfate is positively associated with fish Hg concentrations but was negatively correlated with Hg in five of six regression models of tissue concentrations. Variables such as pH, acid neutralizing capacity, and total phosphorus did not occur at levels associated with high fish Hg concentrations, partially explaining the relatively low Hg values we observed. ?? 2010 American Chemical Society.

  17. Mercury contamination in fish in midcontinent great rivers of the United States: importance of species traits and environmental factors.

    PubMed

    Walters, David M; Blocksom, Karen A; Lazorchak, James M; Jicha, Terri; Angradi, Theodore R; Bolgrien, David W

    2010-04-15

    We measured mercury (Hg) concentrations in whole fish from the Upper Mississippi, Missouri, and Ohio Rivers to characterize the extent and magnitude of Hg contamination and to identify environmental factors influencing Hg accumulation. Concentrations were generally lower (80% of values between 20-200 ng g(-1) wet weight) than those reported for other regions (e.g., upper Midwest and Northeast U.S.). Mercury exceeded the risk threshold for belted kingfisher (Ceryle alcyon, the most sensitive species considered) in 33-75% of river length and 1-7% of river length for humans. Concentrations were lower in the Missouri than in the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers, consistent with continental-scale patterns in atmospheric Hg deposition. Body size and trophic guild were the best predictors of Hg concentrations, which were highest in large-bodied top predators. Site geochemical and landscape properties were weakly related with fish Hg. Moreover, relationships often ran contrary to conventional wisdom, and the slopes of the relationships (positive or negative) were inconsistent among fish guilds and rivers. For example, sulfate is positively associated with fish Hg concentrations but was negatively correlated with Hg in five of six regression models of tissue concentrations. Variables such as pH, acid neutralizing capacity, and total phosphorus did not occur at levels associated with high fish Hg concentrations, partially explaining the relatively low Hg values we observed.

  18. Importance of individual species of predators on nesting success of ducks in the Canadian prairie pothole region

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Johnson, Douglas H.; Sargeant, Alan B.; Greenwood, Raymond J.

    1989-01-01

    We followed 3094 upland nests of several species of ducks. Clutches in most nests were lost to predation. We related daily nest predation rates to indices of activity of eight egg-eating predators, precipitation during the nesting season, and measures of wetland conditions. Activity indices of red fox (Vulpes vulpes), striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis), and raccoon (Procyon lotor) activity were positively correlated, as were activity indices of coyote (Canis latrans), Franklin's ground squirrel (Spermophilus franklinii), and black-billed magpie (Pica pica). Indices of fox and coyote activity were strongly negatively correlated (r = -0.51), as were those of badger (Taxidea taxus) and skunk (r = -0.46). Nest predation rates in the early part of the breeding season were positively related to indices of fox, American crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos), and badger activity. Predation rates in the latter part of the season were positively related to indices of fox and skunk activity. Predation rates on early-season nests were lower in areas and years in which larger fractions of seasonal wetlands contained water. For late-season nests, a similar relationship held involving semipermanent wetlands. We suspect that the wetland measures, which reflect precipitation during some previous period, also indicate vegetation growth and the abundance of buffer prey, factors that may influence nest predation rates.

  19. 7 CFR 944.503 - Table Grape Import Regulation 4.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 8 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Table Grape Import Regulation 4. 944.503 Section 944...; IMPORT REGULATIONS § 944.503 Table Grape Import Regulation 4. (a)(1) Pursuant to section 8e of the Act... Vinifera species table grapes, except Emperor, Calmeria, Almeria, and Ribier varieties, is...

  20. 7 CFR 944.503 - Table Grape Import Regulation 4.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 8 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Table Grape Import Regulation 4. 944.503 Section 944...; IMPORT REGULATIONS § 944.503 Table Grape Import Regulation 4. (a)(1) Pursuant to section 8e of the Act... Vinifera species table grapes, except Emperor, Calmeria, Almeria, and Ribier varieties, is...

  1. Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that specialty crops are a vital part of agriculture in the United States, that the Committee on Agriculture should propose funding for programs that support specialty crops priorities, and that legislation should be passed that includes funding reflecting specialty crops as a growing and important part of United States agriculture.

    THOMAS, 113th Congress

    Rep. DelBene, Suzan K. [D-WA-1

    2013-04-25

    05/03/2013 Referred to the Subcommittee on Horticulture, Research, Biotechnology, and Foreign Agriculture. (All Actions) Tracker: This bill has the status IntroducedHere are the steps for Status of Legislation:

  2. Biomimetic synthesis of antimicrobial silver nanoparticles using in vitro-propagated plantlets of a medicinally important endangered species: Phlomis bracteosa.

    PubMed

    Anjum, Sumaira; Abbasi, Bilal Haider

    2016-01-01

    In vitro-derived cultures of plants offer a great potential for rapid biosynthesis of chemical-free antimicrobial silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) by enhancing their phytochemical reducing potential. Here, we developed an efficient protocol for in vitro micropropagation of a high-value endangered medicinal plant species, Phlomis bracteosa, in order to explore its biogenic potential in biomimetic synthesis of antimicrobial AgNPs. Murashige and Skoog medium supplemented with 2.0 mg/L thidiazuron was found to be more efficient in inducing optimum in vitro shoot regeneration (78%±4.09%), and 2.0 mg/L indole-3-butyric acid was used for maximum root induction (86%±4.457%). Antimicrobial AgNPs were successfully synthesized by using aqueous extract (rich in total phenolics and flavonoids content) of in vitro derived plantlets of P. bracteosa. Ultraviolet-visible spectroscopy of synthesized AgNPs showed characteristic surface plasmon band in the range of 420-429 nm. The crystallinity, size, and shape of the AgNPs were characterized by X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy. Face-centered cubic AgNPs of almost uniform spherical size (22.41 nm) were synthesized within a short time (1 hour) at room temperature. Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy revealed that the polyphenols were mainly responsible for reduction and capping of synthesized AgNPs. Energy dispersive X-ray analysis further endorsed the presence of elemental silver in synthesized AgNPs. These biosynthesized AgNPs displayed significantly higher bactericidal activity against multiple drug-resistant human pathogens. The present work highlighted the potent role of in vitro-derived plantlets of P. bracteosa for feasible biosynthesis of antimicrobial AgNPs, which can be used as nanomedicines in many biomedical applications.

  3. Biomimetic synthesis of antimicrobial silver nanoparticles using in vitro-propagated plantlets of a medicinally important endangered species: Phlomis bracteosa

    PubMed Central

    Anjum, Sumaira; Abbasi, Bilal Haider

    2016-01-01

    In vitro-derived cultures of plants offer a great potential for rapid biosynthesis of chemical-free antimicrobial silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) by enhancing their phytochemical reducing potential. Here, we developed an efficient protocol for in vitro micropropagation of a high-value endangered medicinal plant species, Phlomis bracteosa, in order to explore its biogenic potential in biomimetic synthesis of antimicrobial AgNPs. Murashige and Skoog medium supplemented with 2.0 mg/L thidiazuron was found to be more efficient in inducing optimum in vitro shoot regeneration (78%±4.09%), and 2.0 mg/L indole-3-butyric acid was used for maximum root induction (86%±4.457%). Antimicrobial AgNPs were successfully synthesized by using aqueous extract (rich in total phenolics and flavonoids content) of in vitro derived plantlets of P. bracteosa. Ultraviolet–visible spectroscopy of synthesized AgNPs showed characteristic surface plasmon band in the range of 420–429 nm. The crystallinity, size, and shape of the AgNPs were characterized by X-ray diffraction and scanning electron microscopy. Face-centered cubic AgNPs of almost uniform spherical size (22.41 nm) were synthesized within a short time (1 hour) at room temperature. Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy revealed that the polyphenols were mainly responsible for reduction and capping of synthesized AgNPs. Energy dispersive X-ray analysis further endorsed the presence of elemental silver in synthesized AgNPs. These biosynthesized AgNPs displayed significantly higher bactericidal activity against multiple drug-resistant human pathogens. The present work highlighted the potent role of in vitro-derived plantlets of P. bracteosa for feasible biosynthesis of antimicrobial AgNPs, which can be used as nanomedicines in many biomedical applications. PMID:27217745

  4. Ultrastructure analysis of the immature stages of Ravinia belforti (Diptera: Sarcophagidae), a species of medical-veterinary and forensic importance, by scanning electron microscopy.

    PubMed

    da-Silva-Xavier, Alexandre; de Carvalho Queiroz, Margareth Maria

    2016-07-01

    The postmortem interval is related to the age of immature species of flies found on corpses and can be estimated using data available in the literature on the biology of the species. The flesh fly Ravinia belforti is a carrier of enteric pathogens that can affect human and animal health as well as being of forensic importance. As the morphology of many immature Sarcophagidae is unknown, these immature forms must be collected and characterized after the emergence of the adult male. Here we describe and analyze the morphological characteristics of the larvae stages L1, L2, L3 and the puparium of R. belforti by scanning electron microscopy (SEM). Ten specimens of each stage were analyzed. Larvae of R. belforti follow the typical muscoid vermiform pattern with 12 segments. The anterior region is pointed, while the posterior region is thicker. The spines of the cephalic collar are flattened and with double, triple or quadruple points, different from the spines along the body that only have a single point. In L2, the anterior spiracle is present with a varying number of papillae (16-22), differing from other species. The posterior spiracles are located within the peritreme. The spiracular cavity is internalized in the posterior region, following the pattern that differs Sarcophagidae from other families. L3 features more visible and developed spines around the cephalic collar, getting thicker and denser near to the first thoracic segment. Puparium is similar to other species of Sarcophagidae. This paper presents important data on this family which has both health and forensic importance. Furthermore, R. belforti shows significant differences from other species of Sarcophagidae.

  5. Grassland agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agriculture in grassland environments is facing multiple stresses from: shifting demographics, declining and fragmented agricultural landscapes, declining environmental quality, variable and changing climate, volatile and increasing energy costs, marginal economic returns, and globalization. Degrad...

  6. The relative importance of vertical soil nutrient heterogeneity, and mean and depth-specific soil nutrient availabilities for tree species richness in tropical forests and woodlands.

    PubMed

    Shirima, Deo D; Totland, Ørjan; Moe, Stein R

    2016-11-01

    The relative importance of resource heterogeneity and quantity on plant diversity is an ongoing debate among ecologists, but we have limited knowledge on relationships between tree diversity and heterogeneity in soil nutrient availability in tropical forests. We expected tree species richness to be: (1) positively related to vertical soil nutrient heterogeneity; (2) negatively related to mean soil nutrient availability; and (3) more influenced by nutrient availability in the upper than lower soil horizons. Using a data set from 60, 20 × 40-m plots in a moist forest, and 126 plots in miombo woodlands in Tanzania, we regressed tree species richness against vertical soil nutrient heterogeneity, both depth-specific (0-15, 15-30, and 30-60 cm) and mean soil nutrient availability, and soil physical properties, with elevation and measures of anthropogenic disturbance as co-variables. Overall, vertical soil nutrient heterogeneity was the best predictor of tree species richness in miombo but, contrary to our prediction, the relationships between tree species richness and soil nutrient heterogeneity were negative. In the moist forest, mean soil nutrient availability explained considerable variations in tree species richness, and in line with our expectations, these relationships were mainly negative. Soil nutrient availability in the top soil layer explained more of the variation in tree species richness than that in the middle and lower layers in both vegetation types. Our study shows that vertical soil nutrient heterogeneity and mean availability can influence tree species richness at different magnitudes in intensively utilized tropical vegetation types.

  7. Effects of model complexity and priors on estimation using sequential importance sampling/resampling for species conservation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dunham, Kylee; Grand, James B.

    2016-01-01

    We examined the effects of complexity and priors on the accuracy of models used to estimate ecological and observational processes, and to make predictions regarding population size and structure. State-space models are useful for estimating complex, unobservable population processes and making predictions about future populations based on limited data. To better understand the utility of state space models in evaluating population dynamics, we used them in a Bayesian framework and compared the accuracy of models with differing complexity, with and without informative priors using sequential importance sampling/resampling (SISR). Count data were simulated for 25 years using known parameters and observation process for each model. We used kernel smoothing to reduce the effect of particle depletion, which is common when estimating both states and parameters with SISR. Models using informative priors estimated parameter values and population size with greater accuracy than their non-informative counterparts. While the estimates of population size and trend did not suffer greatly in models using non-informative priors, the algorithm was unable to accurately estimate demographic parameters. This model framework provides reasonable estimates of population size when little to no information is available; however, when information on some vital rates is available, SISR can be used to obtain more precise estimates of population size and process. Incorporating model complexity such as that required by structured populations with stage-specific vital rates affects precision and accuracy when estimating latent population variables and predicting population dynamics. These results are important to consider when designing monitoring programs and conservation efforts requiring management of specific population segments.

  8. On the importance of geographic and taxonomic sampling in phylogeography: A reevaluation of diversification and species limits in a Neotropical thrush (Aves, Turdidae).

    PubMed

    Avendaño, Jorge Enrique; Arbeláez-Cortés, Enrique; Cadena, Carlos Daniel

    2017-03-24

    Phylogeographic studies seeking to describe biogeographic patterns, infer evolutionary processes, and revise species-level classification should properly characterize the distribution ranges of study species, and thoroughly sample genetic variation across taxa and geography. This is particularly necessary for widely distributed organisms occurring in complex landscapes, such as the Neotropical region. Here, we clarify the geographic range and revisit the phylogeography of the Black-billed Thrush (Turdus ignobilis), a common passerine bird from lowland tropical South America, whose evolutionary relationships and species limits were recently evaluated employing phylogeographic analyses based on partial knowledge of its distribution and incomplete sampling of populations. Our work employing mitochondrial and nuclear DNA sequences sampled all named subspecies and multiple populations across northern South America, and uncovered patterns not apparent in earlier work, including a biogeographic interplay between the Amazon and Orinoco basins and the occurrence of distinct lineages with seemingly different habitat affinities in regional sympatry in the Colombian Amazon. In addition, we found that previous inferences about the affinities and taxonomic status of Andean populations assumed to be allied to populations from the Pantepui region were incorrect, implying that inferred biogeographic and taxonomic scenarios need re-evaluation. We propose a new taxonomic treatment, which recognizes two distinct biological species in the group. Our findings illustrate the importance of sufficient taxon and geographic sampling to reconstruct evolutionary history and to evaluate species limits among Neotropical organisms. Considering the scope of the questions asked, advances in Neotropical phylogeography will often require substantial cross-country scientific collaboration.

  9. Chiral separation of agricultural fungicides.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Fernández, Virginia; García, Maria Ángeles; Marina, Maria Luisa

    2011-09-23

    Fungicides are very important and diverse environmental and agricultural concern species. Their determination in commercial formulations or environmental matrices, requires highly efficient, selective and sensitive methods. A significant number of these chemicals are chiral with the activity residing usually in one of the enantiomers. The different toxicological and degradation behavior observed in many cases for fungicide enantiomers, results in the need to investigate them separately. For this purpose, separation techniques such as GC, HPLC, supercritical fluid chromatography (SFC) and CE have widely been employed although, at present, HPLC still dominates chromatographic chiral analysis of fungicides. This review covers the literature concerning the enantiomeric separation of fungicides usually employed in agriculture grouping the chiral separation methodologies developed for their analysis in environmental, biological, and food samples.

  10. Accumulation patterns of lipophilic organic contaminants in surface sediments and in economic important mussel and fish species from Jakarta Bay, Indonesia.

    PubMed

    Dwiyitno; Dsikowitzky, Larissa; Nordhaus, Inga; Andarwulan, Nuri; Irianto, Hari Eko; Lioe, Hanifah Nuryani; Ariyani, Farida; Kleinertz, Sonja; Schwarzbauer, Jan

    2016-09-30

    Non-target screening analyses were conducted in order to identify a wide range of organic contaminants in sediment and animal tissue samples from Jakarta Bay. High concentrations of di-iso-propylnaphthalenes (DIPNs), linear alkylbenzenes (LABs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) were detected in all samples, whereas phenylmethoxynaphthalene (PMN), DDT and DDT metabolites (DDX) were detected at lower concentrations. In order to evaluate the uptake and accumulation by economic important mussel (Perna viridis) and fish species, contaminant patterns of DIPNs, LABs and PAHs in different compartments were compared. Different patterns of these contaminant groups were found in sediment and animal tissue samples, suggesting compound-specific accumulation and metabolism processes. Significantly higher concentrations of these three contaminant groups in mussel tissue as compared to fish tissue from Jakarta Bay were found. Because P. viridis is an important aquaculture species in Asia, this result is relevant for food safety.

  11. Agriculture in the Midwest

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Agriculture in the Midwest United States (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin) represents one of the most intense areas of agriculture in the world. This area is not only critically important for the United States, but also for world exports of grain and meat for the Un...

  12. [Effects of agricultural activities and transgenic crops on agricultural biodiversity].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xi-Tao; Luo, Hong-Bing; Li, Jun-Sheng; Huang, Hai; Liu, Yong-Bo

    2014-09-01

    Agricultural biodiversity is a key part of the ecosystem biodiversity, but it receives little concern. The monoculture, environmental pollution and habitat fragmentation caused by agricultural activities have threatened agricultural biodiversity over the past 50 years. To optimize agricultural management measures for crop production and environmental protection, we reviewed the effects of agricultural activities, including cultivation patterns, plastic mulching, chemical additions and the cultivation of transgenic crops, on agricultural biodiversity. The results showed that chemical pesticides and fertilizers had the most serious influence and the effects of transgenic crops varied with other factors like the specific transgene inserted in crops. The environmental risk of transgenic crops should be assessed widely through case-by-case methods, particularly its potential impacts on agricultural biodiversity. It is important to consider the protection of agricultural biodiversity before taking certain agricultural practices, which could improve agricultural production and simultaneously reduce the environmental impacts.

  13. Placental Transporter Localization and Expression in the Human: the importance of species, sex and gestational age differences1.

    PubMed

    Walker, Natasha; Filis, Panagiotis; Soffientini, Ugo; Bellingham, Michelle; O'Shaughnessy, Peter J; Fowler, Paul A

    2017-03-07

    The placenta is a critical organ during pregnancy, essential for the provision of an optimal intrauterine environment, with fetal survival, growth and development relying on correct placental function. It must allow nutritional compounds and relevant hormones to pass into the fetal bloodstream and metabolic waste products to be cleared. It also acts as a semi-permeable barrier to potentially harmful chemicals both endogenous and exogenous. Transporter proteins allow for bidirectional transport and are found in the syncytiotrophoblast of the placenta and endothelium of fetal capillaries. The major transporter families in the human placenta are ABC and SLC and insufficiency of these transporters may lead to deleterious effects on the fetus. Transporter expression levels are gestation-dependent and this is of considerable clinical interest as levels of drug resistance may be altered from one trimester to the next. This highlights the importance of these transporters in mediating correct and timely transplacental passage of essential compounds but also for efflux of potentially toxic drugs and xenobiotics. We review the current literature on placental molecular transporters with respect to their localization and ontogeny, the influence of fetal sex and the relevance of animal models. We conclude that a paucity of information exists and further studies are required to unlock the enigma of this dynamic organ.

  14. Association of N2-fixing Cyanobacteria and Plants: Towards Novel Symbioses of Agricultural Importance. Final report, 1 April 1996 to 31 May 1997

    SciTech Connect

    Gantar, Miroslav

    1999-03-01

    The goal of this project is to characterize an association that takes place between the roots of wheat and the nitrogen-fixing cyanobacterium Nostoc 2S9. By understanding how the association takes place and the extent to which it permits the growth of the plant without exogenous nitrogenous fertilizer, it may prove possible to increase the benefits of the association and to extend them to other plants of agrinomic importance.

  15. Effects of age, size, and density on natural survival for an important coral reef fishery species, yellow tang, Zebrasoma flavescens

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Claisse, J. T.; McTee, S. A.; Parrish, J. D.

    2009-03-01

    Hundreds of thousands of juvenile yellow tang, Zebrasoma flavescens, are caught each year in the state of Hawai’i (USA) for the live aquarium trade. As part of an extensive adaptive management strategy built around a network of protected areas, an emphasis was placed on understanding this important species’ life history. Multiple capture-mark-recapture techniques and a model selection approach to data analysis in Program MARK were used to estimate the effects of individual age and conspecific density on natural per-capita daily survival probabilities of yellow tang recruits (recently settled individuals, 30-50 mm total length) and the effects of body size and site on natural per-capita monthly survival probabilities for juveniles (58-127 mm total length). The models of recruit survival that included additive effects of density and age were best supported by the data and indicated an increase of survival with age and decrease of survival with increased conspecific density. At 1 day post-settlement, the model averaged daily per-capita survival probability ranged from 0.963 (95% CI: 0.932-0.981) at a low density of 0.1 recruits m-2 to 0.848 (95% CI: 0.752-0.911) at a high density of 1.3 recruits m-2. The best supported model of juvenile survival had no effect of fish length or site, with a constant monthly per-capita survival of 0.939 (95% CI: 0.925-0.950). Only about 1% of recruits may survive to adulthood when protected from fishing. These results can be used to better analyze and interpret data from protected area monitoring surveys and refine management practices. Continued long-term monitoring, combined with targeted life history studies and demographic modeling, is needed to further investigate the population level effects of fishing yellow tang juveniles.

  16. A Phylogenetic Analysis of Chloroplast Genomes Elucidates the Relationships of the Six Economically Important Brassica Species Comprising the Triangle of U

    PubMed Central

    Li, Peirong; Zhang, Shujiang; Li, Fei; Zhang, Shifan; Zhang, Hui; Wang, Xiaowu; Sun, Rifei; Bonnema, Guusje; Borm, Theo J. A.

    2017-01-01

    The Brassica genus comprises many economically important worldwide cultivated crops. The well-established model of the Brassica genus, U’s triangle, consists of three basic diploid plant species (Brassica rapa, Brassica oleracea, and Brassica nigra) and three amphidiploid species (Brassica napus, Brassica juncea, and Brassica carinata) that arose through interspecific hybridizations. Despite being extensively studied because of its commercial relevance, several aspects of the origin of the Brassica species and the relationships within and among these six species still remain open questions. Here, we successfully de novo assembled 60 complete chloroplast genomes of Brassica genotypes of all six species. A complete map of the single nucleotide variants and insertions and deletions in the chloroplast genomes of different Brassica species was produced. The chloroplast genome consists of a Large and a Small Single Copy (LSC and SSC) region between two inverted repeats, and while these regions of chloroplast genomes have very different molecular evolutionary rates, phylogenetic analyses of different regions yielded no contradicting topologies and separated the Brassica genus into four clades. B. carinata and B. juncea share their chloroplast genome with one of their hybridization donors B. nigra and B. rapa, respectively, which fits the U model. B. rapa, surprisingly, shows evidence of two types of chloroplast genomes, with one type specific to some Italian broccoletto accessions. B. napus clearly has evidence for two independent hybridization events, as it contains either B. rapa chloroplast genomes. The divergence estimation suggests that B. nigra and B. carinata diverged from the main Brassica clade 13.7 million years ago (Mya), while B. rapa and B. oleracea diverged at 2.18 Mya. The use of the complete chloroplast DNA sequence not only provides insights into comparative genome analysis but also paves the way for a better understanding of the phylogenetic

  17. What explains patterns of species richness? The relative importance of climatic-niche evolution, morphological evolution, and ecological limits in salamanders.

    PubMed

    Kozak, Kenneth H; Wiens, John J

    2016-08-01

    A major goal of evolutionary biology and ecology is to understand why species richness varies among clades. Previous studies have suggested that variation in richness among clades might be related to variation in rates of morphological evolution among clades (e.g., body size and shape). Other studies have suggested that richness patterns might be related to variation in rates of climatic-niche evolution. However, few studies, if any, have tested the relative importance of these variables in explaining patterns of richness among clades. Here, we test their relative importance among major clades of Plethodontidae, the most species-rich family of salamanders. Earlier studies have suggested that climatic-niche evolution explains patterns of diversification among plethodontid clades, whereas rates of morphological evolution do not. A subsequent study stated that rates of morphological evolution instead explained patterns of species richness among plethodontid clades (along with "ecological limits" on richness of clades, leading to saturation of clades with species, given limited resources). However, they did not consider climatic-niche evolution. Using phylogenetic multiple regression, we show that rates of climatic-niche evolution explain most variation in richness among plethodontid clades, whereas rates of morphological evolution do not. We find little evidence that ecological limits explain patterns of richness among plethodontid clades. We also test whether rates of morphological and climatic-niche evolution are correlated, and find that they are not. Overall, our results help explain richness patterns in a major amphibian group and provide possibly the first test of the relative importance of climatic niches and morphological evolution in explaining diversity patterns.

  18. Determining the most important physiological and agronomic traits contributing to maize grain yield through machine learning algorithms: a new avenue in intelligent agriculture.

    PubMed

    Shekoofa, Avat; Emam, Yahya; Shekoufa, Navid; Ebrahimi, Mansour; Ebrahimie, Esmaeil

    2014-01-01

    Prediction is an attempt to accurately forecast the outcome of a specific situation while using input information obtained from a set of variables that potentially describe the situation. They can be used to project physiological and agronomic processes; regarding this fact, agronomic traits such as yield can be affected by a large number of variables. In this study, we analyzed a large number of physiological and agronomic traits by screening, clustering, and decision tree models to select the most relevant factors for the prospect of accurately increasing maize grain yield. Decision tree models (with nearly the same performance evaluation) were the most useful tools in understanding the underlying relationships in physiological and agronomic features for selecting the most important and relevant traits (sowing date-location, kernel number per ear, maximum water content, kernel weight, and season duration) corresponding to the maize grain yield. In particular, decision tree generated by C&RT algorithm was the best model for yield prediction based on physiological and agronomical traits which can be extensively employed in future breeding programs. No significant differences in the decision tree models were found when feature selection filtering on data were used, but positive feature selection effect observed in clustering models. Finally, the results showed that the proposed model techniques are useful tools for crop physiologists to search through large datasets seeking patterns for the physiological and agronomic factors, and may assist the selection of the most important traits for the individual site and field. In particular, decision tree models are method of choice with the capability of illustrating different pathways of yield increase in breeding programs, governed by their hierarchy structure of feature ranking as well as pattern discovery via various combinations of features.

  19. Determining the Most Important Physiological and Agronomic Traits Contributing to Maize Grain Yield through Machine Learning Algorithms: A New Avenue in Intelligent Agriculture

    PubMed Central

    Shekoofa, Avat; Emam, Yahya; Shekoufa, Navid; Ebrahimi, Mansour; Ebrahimie, Esmaeil

    2014-01-01

    Prediction is an attempt to accurately forecast the outcome of a specific situation while using input information obtained from a set of variables that potentially describe the situation. They can be used to project physiological and agronomic processes; regarding this fact, agronomic traits such as yield can be affected by a large number of variables. In this study, we analyzed a large number of physiological and agronomic traits by screening, clustering, and decision tree models to select the most relevant factors for the prospect of accurately increasing maize grain yield. Decision tree models (with nearly the same performance evaluation) were the most useful tools in understanding the underlying relationships in physiological and agronomic features for selecting the most important and relevant traits (sowing date-location, kernel number per ear, maximum water content, kernel weight, and season duration) corresponding to the maize grain yield. In particular, decision tree generated by C&RT algorithm was the best model for yield prediction based on physiological and agronomical traits which can be extensively employed in future breeding programs. No significant differences in the decision tree models were found when feature selection filtering on data were used, but positive feature selection effect observed in clustering models. Finally, the results showed that the proposed model techniques are useful tools for crop physiologists to search through large datasets seeking patterns for the physiological and agronomic factors, and may assist the selection of the most important traits for the individual site and field. In particular, decision tree models are method of choice with the capability of illustrating different pathways of yield increase in breeding programs, governed by their hierarchy structure of feature ranking as well as pattern discovery via various combinations of features. PMID:24830330

  20. Quantitative analysis of desorption and decomposition kinetics of formic acid on Cu(111): The importance of hydrogen bonding between adsorbed species

    SciTech Connect

    Shiozawa, Yuichiro; Koitaya, Takanori; Mukai, Kozo; Yoshimoto, Shinya; Yoshinobu, Jun

    2015-12-21

    Quantitative analysis of desorption and decomposition kinetics of formic acid (HCOOH) on Cu(111) was performed by temperature programmed desorption (TPD), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, and time-resolved infrared reflection absorption spectroscopy. The activation energy for desorption is estimated to be 53–75 kJ/mol by the threshold TPD method as a function of coverage. Vibrational spectra of the first layer HCOOH at 155.3 K show that adsorbed molecules form a polymeric structure via the hydrogen bonding network. Adsorbed HCOOH molecules are dissociated gradually into monodentate formate species. The activation energy for the dissociation into monodentate formate species is estimated to be 65.0 kJ/mol at a submonolayer coverage (0.26 molecules/surface Cu atom). The hydrogen bonding between adsorbed HCOOH species plays an important role in the stabilization of HCOOH on Cu(111). The monodentate formate species are stabilized at higher coverages, because of the lack of vacant sites for the bidentate formation.

  1. Fatty Acid Composition and Levels of Selected Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids in Four Commercial Important Freshwater Fish Species from Lake Victoria, Tanzania

    PubMed Central

    Robert, Agnes; Mfilinge, Prosper; Limbu, Samwel M.; Mwita, Chacha J.

    2014-01-01

    Fatty acids (FAs) particularly ω3 and ω6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) play important role in human health. This study aimed to investigate the composition and levels of selected ω3 PUFAs in four commercial fish species, Nile perch (Lates niloticus), Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus), Tilapia zillii, and dagaa (Rastrineobola argentea) from Mwanza Gulf in Lake Victoria. The results indicated that 36 types of FAs with different saturation levels were detected. These FAs were dominated by docosahexaenoic (DHA), eicosapentaenoic (EPA), docosapentaenoic (DPA), and eicosatetraenoic acids. O. niloticus had the highest composition of FAs (34) compared to L. niloticus (27), T. zillii (26), and R. argentea (21). The levels of EPA differed significantly among the four commercial fish species (F = 6.19,  P = 0.001). The highest EPA levels were found in R. argentea followed by L. niloticus and O. niloticus and the lowest in T. zillii. The DPA levels showed no significant difference among the four fish species studied (F = 0.652,  P = 0.583). The study concluded that all four commercial species collected from Mwanza Gulf are good for human health, but R. argentea is the best for consumption because it contains higher levels of ω3 FAs, mainly EPA. PMID:25610654

  2. Effect of bait decomposition on the attractiveness to species of Diptera of veterinary and forensic importance in a rainforest fragment in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Oliveira, Diego L; Soares, Thiago F; Vasconcelos, Simão D

    2016-01-01

    Insects associated with carrion can have parasitological importance as vectors of several pathogens and causal agents of myiasis to men and to domestic and wild animals. We tested the attractiveness of animal baits (chicken liver) at different stages of decomposition to necrophagous species of Diptera (Calliphoridae, Fanniidae, Muscidae, Phoridae and Sarcophagidae) in a rainforest fragment in Brazil. Five types of bait were used: fresh and decomposed at room temperature (26 °C) for 24, 48, 72 and 96 h. A positive correlation was detected between the time of decomposition and the abundance of Calliphoridae and Muscidae, whilst the abundance of adults of Phoridae decreased with the time of decomposition. Ten species of calliphorids were registered, of which Chrysomya albiceps, Chrysomya megacephala and Chloroprocta idioidea showed a positive significant correlation between abundance and decomposition. Specimens of Sarcophagidae and Fanniidae did not discriminate between fresh and highly decomposed baits. A strong female bias was registered for all species of Calliphoridae irrespective of the type of bait. The results reinforce the feasibility of using animal tissues as attractants to a wide diversity of dipterans of medical, parasitological and forensic importance in short-term surveys, especially using baits at intermediate stages of decomposition.

  3. Oviposition preferences of two forensically important blow fly species, Chrysomya megacephala and C. rufifacies (Diptera: Calliphoridae), and implications for postmortem interval estimation.

    PubMed

    Yang, Shih-Tsai; Shiao, Shiuh-Feng

    2012-03-01

    Necrophagous blow fly species (Diptera: Calliphoridae) are the most important agents for estimating the postmortem interval (PMI) in forensic entomology. Nevertheless, the oviposition preferences of blow flies may cause a bias of PMI estimations because of a delay or acceleration of egg laying. Chrysomya megacephala (F.) and C. rufifacies (Macquart) are two predominant necrophagous blow fly species in Taiwan. Their larvae undergo rather intense competition, and the latter one can prey on the former under natural conditions. To understand the oviposition preferences of these two species, a dual-choice device was used to test the choice of oviposition sites by females. Results showed when pork liver with and without larvae of C. rufifacies was provided, C. megacephala preferred to lay eggs on the liver without larvae. However, C. megacephala showed no preference when pork liver with and without conspecific larvae or larvae of Hemipyrellia ligurriens (Wiedemann) was provided. These results indicate that females of C. megacephala try to avoid laying eggs around larvae of facultatively predaceous species of C. rufifacies. However, C. rufifacies showed significant oviposition preference for pork liver with larvae of C. megacephala or conspecific ones when compared with pork liver with no larvae. These results probably imply that conspecific larvae or larvae of C. megacephala may potentially be alternative food resources for C. rufifacies, so that its females prefer to lay eggs in their presence. When considering the size of the oviposition media, pork livers of a relatively small size were obviously unfavorable to both species. This may be because females need to find sufficient resources to meet the food demands of their larvae. In another experiment, neither blow fly species showed an oviposition preference for pork livers of different stages of decay. In addition, the oviposition preferences of both species to those media with larvae were greatly disturbed in a dark

  4. Structural and Genetic Investigation of the Egg and First-Instar Larva of an Egg-Laying Population of Blaesoxipha plinthopyga (Diptera: Sarcophagidae), a Species of Forensic Importance.

    PubMed

    Pimsler, Meaghan L; Pape, Thomas; Johnston, J Spencer; Wharton, Robert A; Parrott, Jonathan J; Restuccia, Danielle; Sanford, Michelle R; Tomberlin, Jeffery K; Tarone, Aaron M

    2014-11-01

    Flies in the family Sarcophagidae incubate their eggs and are known to be ovoviviparous (i.e., ovolarviparous), but a laboratory-maintained colony of Blaesoxipha plinthopyga (Wiedemann) deposited clutches of viable eggs over 10 generations. A description of the egg and first-instar larva of this species is provided along with genetic data (genome size and cytochrome oxidase I sequences). The egg is similar to previously described eggs of other Sarcophagidae but differs in the configuration of the micropyle. In the first-instar larva, the oral ridges are much more developed than has been described for other species. B. plinthopyga has forensic importance, and the present descriptive information is critical for proper case management.

  5. Importance of rhizobia in Agriculture: potential of the commercial inoculants and native strains for improving legume yields in different land-use systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lesueur, D.; Atieno, M.; Mathu, S.; Herrmann, L.

    2012-04-01

    Legumes play an important role in the traditional diets of many regions throughout the world because they provide a multitude of benefits to both the soil and other crops grown in combination with them or following them in several cropping systems. The ability of legumes to fix atmospheric nitrogen in association with rhizobia gives them the capacity to grow in very degraded soils. But do we have to systematically inoculate legumes? For example our results suggested that the systematic inoculation of both cowpea and green gram in Kenya with commercial inoculants to improve yields is not really justified, native strains performing better than inoculated strains. But when native rhizobia nodulating legumes are not naturally present, application of rhizobial inoculants is very commonly used. Our results showed that the utilization of effective good-quality rhizobial inoculants by farmers have a real potential to improve legume yields in unfertile soils requesting high applications of mineral fertilizers. For example an effective soybean commercial inoculants was tested in different locations in Kenya (in about 150 farms in 3 mandate areas presenting different soil characteristics and environmental conditions). Application of the rhizobial inoculant significantly increased the soybean yields in all mandate areas (about 75% of the farms). Nodule occupancy analysis showed that a high number of nodules occupied by the inoculated strain did not obviously lead to an increase of soybean production. Soil factors (pH, P, C, N…) seemed to affect the inoculant efficiency whether the strain is occupying the nodules or not. Our statistic analysis showed that soil pH significantly affected nodulation and yield, though the effect was variable depending on the region. We concluded that the competitiveness of rhizobial strains might not be the main factor explaining the effect (or lack of) of legumes inoculation in the field. Another study was aiming to assess if several factors

  6. Culture versus PCR for Salmonella Species Identification in Some Dairy Products and Dairy Handlers with Special Concern to Its Zoonotic Importance.

    PubMed

    Gwida, Mayada M; Al-Ashmawy, Maha A M

    2014-01-01

    A total of 200 samples of milk and dairy products as well as 120 samples of dairy handlers were randomly collected from different dairy farms and supermarkets in Dakahlia Governorate, Egypt. The conventional cultural and serotyping methods for detection of Salmonella in dairy products were applied and the results were compared with those obtained by molecular screening assay using (ttr sequence). The obtained results revealed that 21% of milk and dairy products (42/200) were positive for Salmonella species using enrichment culture-based PCR method, while 12% of different dairy samples (24/200) were found to be positive for Salmonella species by using the conventional culture methods. Two stool specimens out of 40 apparently healthy dairy handlers were positive by the PCR method. Serotyping of Salmonella isolates revealed that 58.3% (14/24) from different dairy products were contaminated with Salmonella Typhimurium. We conclude that the enrichment culture-based PCR assay has high sensitivity and specificity for detection of Salmonella species in dairy products and handlers. High incidence of Salmonella Typhimurium in the examined dairy samples highlights the important role played by milk and dairy products as a vehicle in disease prevalence. Great effort should be applied for reducing foodborne risk for consumers.

  7. Agricultural Wastes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jewell, W. J.; Switzenbaum, M. S.

    1978-01-01

    Presents a literature review of agricultural wastes, covering publications of 1976-77. Some of the areas covered are: (1) water characteristics and impacts; (2) waste treatment; (3) reuse of agricultural wastes; and (4) nonpoint pollution sources. A list of 150 references is also presented. (HM)

  8. VOCATIONAL AGRICULTURE.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    California State Dept. of Education, Sacramento. Research Coordinating Unit.

    TO ASSIST THOSE WHO MAKE DECISIONS RELATING TO EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS IN AGRICULTURE, RECENT RESEARCH IN VOCATIONAL AGRICULTURE IS SUMMARIZED. A 1963 STUDY TREATS THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN WORK EXPERIENCE AND STUDENT CHARACTERISTICS, PLANS, AND ASPIRATIONS. STUDIES ON POST-SECONDARY EDUCATION CONCERN GUIDELINES FOR TECHNICIAN PROGRAMS, JUSTIFICATION…

  9. Third instar larvae of flesh flies (Diptera: Sarcophagidae) of forensic importance--critical review of characters and key for European species.

    PubMed

    Szpila, Krzysztof; Richet, René; Pape, Thomas

    2015-06-01

    Necrophagous Sarcophagidae are among the insects most frequently reported from human corpses. The broad forensic application of flesh flies is restricted by the lack of reliable tools for species identification of larval stages and mass breeding of collected flesh fly larvae to the adult stage, and more recently DNA-based methods are usually recommended for precise species identification. To overcome this situation, the following study was implemented: (1) original larval material was obtained of the European flesh flies of confirmed or potential forensic importance; (2) larval morphology was studied and documented using a combination of standard light microscopy, image-stacking stereomicroscopy and SEM; and (3) larval characters used in previously published keys were critically revised. The taxonomic value of the following characters was considered insignificant: (1) differences in level of sclerotisation of particular parts of the cephaloskeleton, (2) level of sclerotisation of the posterior spiracular peritreme and (3) the shape of posterior spiracular slits. A high taxonomic value was noticed for the general shape of anterior spiracles, pattern of arrangement of their lobes, and distribution and shape of spines/warts on the inter-band area of segments. Two character states-long window in the dorsal cornu of cephaloskeleton and deep spiracular cavity on anal division-are not found in the Miltogramminae and therefore cannot be considered as family-specific for the entire Sarcophagidae. As a comprehensive result of our studies, an identification key is presented for the third instar larvae of European flesh flies of forensic importance. The key is user-friendly and requires no dissections of larvae, as soaking the material in methyl salicylate will allow observation of all diagnostic details of the cephaloskeleton. A simple stereomicroscope (magnification about ×50) is sufficient for the observation of all characters presented in the key. This key may be

  10. Food and Agricultural Imports from China

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2007-07-17

    the many foods, medicines, and other products from China in particular. For example, in early 2007, evidence began to emerge that adulterated pet...public about adulterated foods, and for notifying the public about adulterated human or animal foods. The amendment includes elements of his... adulterated pet food ingredients from China had caused the deaths of an unknown number of dogs and cats. Furthermore, some ingredients also were fed to U.S

  11. 7 CFR 996.7 - Importer.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 8 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importer. 996.7 Section 996.7 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Marketing Agreements and... DOMESTIC AND IMPORTED PEANUTS MARKETED IN THE UNITED STATES Definitions § 996.7 Importer. Importer means...

  12. Agricultural Energy Practices. Agriculture Energy.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crank, Ron

    This instructional unit is one of 10 developed by students on various energy-related areas that deals specifically with agricultural energy practices. Its objective is for the student to be able to discuss energy use and conservation of resources in the production of agricultural products. Some topics covered are basic uses of direct energy in…

  13. Agriculture Education. Agricultural Metal Working.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stuttgart Public Schools, AR.

    This curriculum guide is designed for group instruction of secondary agricultural education students enrolled in one or two semester-long courses in agricultural metal working. The guide presents units of study in the following areas: (1) oxyacetylene welding, (2) arc welding, (3) sheet metal, (4) blueprint reading for welders and (5) job…

  14. Identification of Shewanella baltica as the most important H2S-producing species during iced storage of Danish marine fish.

    PubMed

    Fonnesbech Vogel, Birte; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri; Satomi, Masataka; Gram, Lone

    2005-11-01

    Shewanella putrefaciens has been considered the main spoilage bacteria of low-temperature stored marine seafood. However, psychrotropic Shewanella have been reclassified during recent years, and the purpose of the present study was to determine whether any of the new Shewanella species are important in fish spoilage. More than 500 H2S-producing strains were isolated from iced stored marine fish (cod, plaice, and flounder) caught in the Baltic Sea during winter or summer time. All strains were identified as Shewanella species by phenotypic tests. Different Shewanella species were present on newly caught fish. During the warm summer months the mesophilic human pathogenic S. algae dominated the H2S-producing bacterial population. After iced storage, a shift in the Shewanella species was found, and most of the H2S-producing strains were identified as S. baltica. The 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis confirmed the identification of these two major groups. Several isolates could only be identified to the genus Shewanella level and were separated into two subgroups with low (44%) and high (47%) G+C mol%. The low G+C% group was isolated during winter months, whereas the high G+C% group was isolated on fish caught during summer and only during the first few days of iced storage. Phenotypically, these strains were different from the type strains of S. putrefaciens, S. oneidensis, S. colwelliana, and S. affinis, but the high G+C% group clustered close to S. colwelliana by 16S rRNA gene sequence comparison. The low G+C% group may constitute a new species. S. baltica, and the low G+C% group of Shewanella spp. strains grew well in cod juice at 0 degrees C, but three high G+C Shewanella spp. were unable to grow at 0 degrees C. In conclusion, the spoilage reactions of iced Danish marine fish remain unchanged (i.e., trimethylamine-N-oxide reduction and H2S production); however, the main H2S-producing organism was identified as S. baltica.

  15. Agricultural Geophysics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The four geophysical methods predominantly used for agricultural purposes are resistivity, electromagnetic induction, ground penetrating radar (GPR), and time domain reflectometry (TDR). Resistivity and electromagnetic induction methods are typically employed to map lateral variations of apparent so...

  16. Agriculture Sectors

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    The Agriculture sectors comprise establishments primarily engaged in growing crops, raising animals, and harvesting fish and other animals. Find information on compliance, enforcement and guidance on EPA laws and regulations on the NAICS 111 & 112 sectors.

  17. Agricultural Microbiology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brill, Winston J.

    1981-01-01

    Elucidates strategies for applying microbiological techniques to traditional agricultural practices. Discusses the manipulation of microorganisms that live with plants and also the problems involved in the introduction of new genes into crop plants by recombinant DNA methods. (CS)

  18. The limited importance of size-asymmetric light competition and growth of pioneer species in early secondary forest succession in Vietnam.

    PubMed

    van Kuijk, Marijke; Anten, N P R; Oomen, R J; van Bentum, D W; Werger, M J A

    2008-08-01

    It is generally believed that asymmetric competition for light plays a predominant role in determining the course of succession by increasing size inequalities between plants. Size-related growth is the product of size-related light capture and light-use efficiency (LUE). We have used a canopy model to calculate light capture and photosynthetic rates of pioneer species in sequential vegetation stages of a young secondary forest stand. Growth of the same saplings was followed in time as succession proceeded. Photosynthetic rate per unit plant mass (P(mass): mol C g(-1) day(-1)), a proxy for plant growth, was calculated as the product of light capture efficiency [Phi(mass): mol photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD) g(-1) day(-1)] and LUE (mol C mol PPFD(-1)). Species showed different morphologies and photosynthetic characteristics, but their light-capturing and light-use efficiencies, and thus P (mass), did not differ much. This was also observed in the field: plant growth was not size-asymmetric. The size hierarchy that was present from the very early beginning of succession remained for at least the first 5 years. We conclude, therefore, that in slow-growing regenerating vegetation stands, the importance of asymmetric competition for light and growth can be much less than is often assumed.

  19. Development of Candida-Specific Real-Time PCR Assays for the Detection and Identification of Eight Medically Important Candida Species.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Jing; Hung, Guo-Chiuan; Nagamine, Kenjiro; Li, Bingjie; Tsai, Shien; Lo, Shyh-Ching

    2016-01-01

    Culture-based identification methods have been the gold standard for the diagnosis of fungal infection. Currently, molecular technologies such as real-time PCR assays with short turnaround time can provide desirable alternatives for the rapid detection of Candida microbes. However, most of the published PCR primer sets are not Candida specific and likely to amplify DNA from common environmental contaminants, such as Aspergillus microbes. In this study, we designed pan-Candida primer sets based on the ribosomal DNA-coding regions conserved within Candida but distinct from those of Aspergillus and Penicillium. We demonstrate that the final two selected pan-Candida primer sets would not amplify Aspergillus DNA and could be used to differentiate eight medically important Candida pathogens in real-time PCR assays based on their melting profiles, with a sensitivity of detection as low as 10 fg of Candida genomic DNA. Moreover, we further evaluated and selected species-specific primer sets covering Candida albicans, Candida glabrata, Candida tropicalis, and Candida dubliniensis and show that they had high sensitivity and specificity. These real-time PCR primer sets could potentially be assembled into a single PCR array for the rapid detection of Candida species in various clinical settings, such as corneal transplantation.

  20. Effects of introgression on the genetic population structure of two ecologically and economically important conifer species: lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta var. latifolia) and jack pine (Pinus banksiana).

    PubMed

    Cullingham, Catherine I; Cooke, Janice E K; Coltman, David W

    2013-10-01

    Forest trees exhibit a remarkable range of adaptations to their environment, but as a result of frequent and long-distance gene flow, populations are often only weakly differentiated. Lodgepole and jack pine hybridize in western Canada, which adds the opportunity for introgression through hybridization to contribute to population structure and (or) adaptive variation. Access to large sample size, high density SNP datasets for these species would improve our ability to resolve population structure, parameterize introgression, and separate the influence of demography from adaptation. To accomplish this, 454 transcriptome reads for lodgepole and jack pine were assembled using Newbler and MIRA, the assemblies mined for SNPs, and 1536 SNPs were selected for typing on lodgepole pine, jack pine, and their hybrids (N = 536). We identified population structure using both Bayesian clustering and discriminate analysis of principle components. Introgressed SNP loci were identified and their influence on observed population structure was assessed. We found that introgressed loci resulted in increased differentiation both within lodgepole and jack pine populations. These findings are timely given the recent mountain pine beetle population expansion in the hybrid zone, and will facilitate future studies of adaptive traits in these ecologically important species.

  1. A high yield DNA extraction method for medically important Candida species: A comparison of manual versus QIAcube-based automated system.

    PubMed

    Das, P; Pandey, P; Harishankar, A; Chandy, M; Bhattacharya, S

    2016-01-01

    The prognosis of infected individuals with candidemia depends on rapid and precise diagnosis which enables optimising treatment. Three fungal DNA extraction protocols have been compared in this study for medically important Candida species. The quality and quantity of the DNA extracted by physical, chemical and automated protocols was compared using NanoDrop ND-2000 spectrophotometer. It was found that the yield and purity (260/230) ratio of extracted DNA was significantly high in the physical treatment-based protocol as compared to chemical based or automated protocol. Extracted DNA-based real time-polymerase chain reaction showed an analytical sensitivity of 103 cfu/mL. The result of this study suggests physical treatment is the most successful extraction technique compared to other two protocols.

  2. Selected examples of dispersal of arthropods associated with agricultural crop and animal production

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Henneberry, T. J.

    1979-01-01

    The economic importance of arthropods in agricultural production systems and the possibilities of using dispersal behavior to develop and manipulate control are examined. Examples of long and short distance dispersal of economic insect pests and beneficial species from cool season host reservoirs and overwintering sites are presented. Significant dispersal of these species often occurring during crop and animal production is discussed.

  3. Agricultural Waste.

    PubMed

    Shu, Huajie; Zhang, Panpan; Chang, Chein-Chi; Wang, Renqing; Zhang, Shuping

    2015-10-01

    The management and disposal of agricultural waste are drawn more and more attention because of the increasing yields and negative effects on the environment. However, proper treatments such as converting abundant biomass wastes into biogas through anaerobic digestion technology, can not only avoid the negative impacts, but also convert waste into available resources. This review summarizes the studies of nearly two hundred scholars from the following four aspects: the characterization, reuse, treatment, and management of agricultural waste.

  4. Urban conservation agriculture

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Vegetables are important sources of vitamins and nutrients for human nutrition. United States Department of Agriculture recommends filling half of the food plates with vegetables in every meal. While it is important in promoting good health, access to fresh vegetables is limited especially in urban ...

  5. On the importance of shrub encroachment by sprouters, climate, species richness and anthropic factors for ecosystem multifunctionality in semi-arid Mediterranean ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Quero, José L.; Maestre, Fernando T.; Ochoa, Victoria; García-Gómez, Miguel; Delgado-Baquerizo, Manuel

    2016-01-01

    One of the most important changes taking place in drylands worldwide is the increase of the cover and dominance of shrubs in areas formerly devoid of them (shrub encroachment). A large body of research has evaluated the causes and consequences of shrub encroachment for both ecosystem structure and functioning. However, there are virtually no studies evaluating how shrub encroachment affects the ability of ecosystems to maintain multiple functions and services simultaneously (multifunctionality). We aimed to do so by gathering data from ten ecosystem functions linked to the maintenance of primary production and nutrient cycling and storage (organic C, activity of β-glucosidase, pentoses, hexoses, total N, total available N, amino acids, proteins, available inorganic P and phosphatase activity), and summarizing them in a multifunctionality index (M). We assessed how climate, species richness, anthropic factors (distance to the nearest town, sandy and asphalted road, and human population in the nearest town at several historical periods) and encroachment by sprouting shrubs impacted both the functions in isolation and M along a regional (ca. 350 km) gradient in Mediterranean grasslands and shrublands dominated by a non-sprouting shrub. Values of M were higher in those grasslands and shrublands containing sprouting shrubs (43% and 62%, respectively). A similar response was found when analyzing the different functions in isolation, as encroachment by sprouting shrubs increased functions by 2%–80% compared to unencroached areas. Encroachment was the main driver of changes in M along the regional gradient evaluated, followed by anthropic factors and species richness. Climate had little effects on M in comparison to the other factors studied. Similar responses were observed when evaluating the functions in isolation. Overall, our results showed that M was higher at sites with higher sprouting shrub cover, longer distance to roads and higher perennial plant species

  6. On the importance of shrub encroachment by sprouters, climate, species richness and anthropic factors for ecosystem multifunctionality in semi-arid Mediterranean ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Quero, José L; Maestre, Fernando T; Ochoa, Victoria; García-Gómez, Miguel; Delgado-Baquerizo, Manuel

    2013-11-01

    One of the most important changes taking place in drylands worldwide is the increase of the cover and dominance of shrubs in areas formerly devoid of them (shrub encroachment). A large body of research has evaluated the causes and consequences of shrub encroachment for both ecosystem structure and functioning. However, there are virtually no studies evaluating how shrub encroachment affects the ability of ecosystems to maintain multiple functions and services simultaneously (multifunctionality). We aimed to do so by gathering data from ten ecosystem functions linked to the maintenance of primary production and nutrient cycling and storage (organic C, activity of β-glucosidase, pentoses, hexoses, total N, total available N, amino acids, proteins, available inorganic P and phosphatase activity), and summarizing them in a multifunctionality index (M). We assessed how climate, species richness, anthropic factors (distance to the nearest town, sandy and asphalted road, and human population in the nearest town at several historical periods) and encroachment by sprouting shrubs impacted both the functions in isolation and M along a regional (ca. 350 km) gradient in Mediterranean grasslands and shrublands dominated by a non-sprouting shrub. Values of M were higher in those grasslands and shrublands containing sprouting shrubs (43% and 62%, respectively). A similar response was found when analyzing the different functions in isolation, as encroachment by sprouting shrubs increased functions by 2%-80% compared to unencroached areas. Encroachment was the main driver of changes in M along the regional gradient evaluated, followed by anthropic factors and species richness. Climate had little effects on M in comparison to the other factors studied. Similar responses were observed when evaluating the functions in isolation. Overall, our results showed that M was higher at sites with higher sprouting shrub cover, longer distance to roads and higher perennial plant species

  7. Agriculture: About EPA's National Agriculture Center

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    EPA's National Agriculture Center (Ag Center), with the support of the United States Department of Agriculture, serves growers, livestock producers, other agribusinesses, and agricultural information/education providers.

  8. The stock of invasive insect species and its economic determinants.

    PubMed

    Hlasny, Vladimir

    2011-06-01

    Invasions of nonindigenous organisms have long been linked to trade, but the contribution of individual trade pathways remains poorly understood, because species are not observed immediately upon arrival and the number of species arriving annually is unknown. Species interception records may count both new arrivals and species long introduced. Furthermore, the stock of invasive insect species already present is unknown. In this study, a state-space model is used to infer the stock of detected as well as undetected invasive insect species established in the United States. A system of equations is estimated jointly to distinguish the patterns of introduction, identification, and eradication. Introductions of invasive species are modeled as dependent on the volume of trade and arrival of people. Identifications depend on the public efforts at invasive species research, as well as on the established stock of invasive species that remain undetected. Eradications of both detected and undetected invasive species depend on containment and quarantine efforts, as well as on the stock of all established invasive species. These patterns are estimated by fitting the predicted number of invasive species detections to the observed record in the North American Non-Indigenous Arthropod Database. The results indicate that agricultural imports are the most important pathway of introduction, followed by immigration of people. Expenditures by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Agricultural Research Service are found to explain the species identification record well. Between three and 38 invasive insect species are estimated to be established in the United States undetected.

  9. 7 CFR 201.38 - Importations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 3 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Importations. 201.38 Section 201.38 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards, Inspections, Marketing Practices), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (CONTINUED) FEDERAL SEED ACT FEDERAL SEED...

  10. 7 CFR 201.38 - Importations.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 3 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Importations. 201.38 Section 201.38 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (Standards, Inspections, Marketing Practices), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (CONTINUED) FEDERAL SEED ACT FEDERAL SEED...

  11. 7 CFR 1210.502 - Importer members.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Importer members. 1210.502 Section 1210.502 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (MARKETING AGREEMENTS AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE WATERMELON RESEARCH...

  12. 7 CFR 1210.502 - Importer members.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Importer members. 1210.502 Section 1210.502 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (MARKETING AGREEMENTS AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE WATERMELON RESEARCH...

  13. 7 CFR 1210.502 - Importer members.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 10 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Importer members. 1210.502 Section 1210.502 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) AGRICULTURAL MARKETING SERVICE (MARKETING AGREEMENTS AND ORDERS; MISCELLANEOUS COMMODITIES), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE WATERMELON RESEARCH...

  14. Real-time loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) assay for group specific detection of important trichothecene producing Fusarium species in wheat.

    PubMed

    Denschlag, Carla; Rieder, Johann; Vogel, Rudi F; Niessen, Ludwig

    2014-05-02

    Trichothecene mycotoxins such as deoxynivaneol (DON), nivalenol (NIV) and T2-Toxin are produced by a variety of Fusarium spp. on cereals in the field and may be ingested by consumption of commodities and products made thereof. The toxins inhibit eukaryotic protein biosynthesis and may thus impair human and animal health. Aimed at rapid and sensitive detection of the most important trichothecene producing Fusarium spp. in a single analysis, a real-time duplex loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) assay was set up. Two sets of LAMP primers were designed independently to amplify a partial sequence of the tri6 gene in Fusarium (F.) graminearum and of the tri5 gene in Fusarium sporotrichioides, respectively. Each of the two sets detected a limited number of the established trichothecene producing Fusarium-species. However, combination of the two sets in one duplex assay enabled detection of F. graminearum, Fusarium culmorum, Fusarium cerealis, F. sporotrichioides, Fusarium langsethiae and Fusarium poae in a group specific manner. No cross reactions were detected with purified DNA from 127 other fungal species or with cereal DNA. To demonstrate the usefulness of the assay, 100 wheat samples collected from all over the German state of Bavaria were analyzed for the trichothecene mycotoxin DON by HPLC and for the presence of trichothecene producers by the new real-time duplex LAMP assay in parallel analyses. The LAMP assay showed positive results for all samples with a DON concentration exceeding 163ppb. The major advantage of the duplex LAMP assay is that the presence of six of the major trichothecene producing Fusarium spp. can be detected in a rapid and user-friendly manner with only one single assay. To our knowledge this is the first report of the use of a multiplex LAMP assay for fungal organisms.

  15. Volatile Organic Compound Emissions by Agricultural Crops

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ormeno, E.; Farres, S.; Gentner, D.; Park, J.; McKay, M.; Karlik, J.; Goldstein, A.

    2008-12-01

    Biogenic Volatile Organic Compounds (BVOCs) participate in ozone and aerosol formation, and comprise a substantial fraction of reactive VOC emission inventories. In the agriculturally intensive Central Valley of California, emissions from crops may substantially influence regional air quality, but emission potentials have not been extensively studied with advanced instrumentation for many important crops. Because crop emissions may vary according to the species, and California emission inventories are constructed via a bottom-up approach, a better knowledge of the emission rate at the species-specific level is critical for reducing uncertainties in emission inventories and evaluating emission model performance. In the present study we identified and quantified the BVOCs released by dominant agricultural crops in California. A screening study to investigate both volatile and semivolatile BVOC fractions (oxygenated VOCs, isoprene, monoterepenes, sesquiterpenes, etc.) was performed for 25 crop species (at least 3 replicates plants each), including branch enclosures of woody species (e.g. peach, mandarin, grape, pistachio) and whole plant enclosures for herbaceous species (e.g. onion, alfalfa, carrot), through a dynamic cuvette system with detection by PTRMS, in-situ GCMS/FID, and collection on carbon-based adsorbents followed by extraction and GCMS analysis. Emission data obtained in this study will allow inclusion of these crops in BVOC emission inventories and air quality simulations.

  16. DNA barcoding and NMR spectroscopy-based assessment of species adulteration in the raw herbal trade of Saraca asoca (Roxb.) Willd, an important medicinal plant.

    PubMed

    Urumarudappa, Santhosh Kumar Jayanthinagar; Gogna, Navdeep; Newmaster, Steven G; Venkatarangaiah, Krishna; Subramanyam, Ragupathy; Saroja, Seethapathy Gopalakrishnan; Gudasalamani, Ravikanth; Dorai, Kavita; Ramanan, Uma Shaanker

    2016-11-01

    Saraca asoca (Roxb.) Willd, commonly known as "Asoka" or "Ashoka," is one of the most important medicinal plants used in raw herbal trade in India. The bark extracts of the tree are used in the treatment of leucorrhea and other uterine disorders besides also having anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, anti-pyretic, anti-helminthic, and analgesic activity. The indiscriminate and rampant extraction of the wood to meet the ever-increasing market demand has led to a sharp decline in naturally occurring populations of the species in the country. Consequently, the species has recently been classified as "vulnerable" by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Increasing deforestation and increasing demand for this medicinal plant have resulted in a limited supply and suspected widespread adulteration of the species in the raw herbal trade market. Adulteration is a serious concern due to: (i) reduction in the efficacy of this traditional medicine, (ii) considerable health risk to consumers, and (iii) fraudulent product substitution that impacts the economy for the Natural Health Product (NHP) Industry and consumers. In this paper, we provide the first attempt to assess the extent of adulteration in the raw herbal trade of S. asoca using DNA barcoding validated by NMR spectroscopic techniques. Analyzing market samples drawn from 25 shops, mostly from peninsular India, we show that more than 80 % of the samples were spurious, representing plant material from at least 7 different families. This is the first comprehensive and large-scale study to demonstrate the widespread adulteration of market samples of S. asoca in India. These results pose grave implications for the use of raw herbal drugs, such as that of S. asoca, on consumer health and safety. Based on these findings, we argue for a strong and robust regulatory framework to be put in place, which would ensure the quality of raw herbal trade products and reassure consumer confidence in indigenous

  17. Oogonal biometry and phylogenetic analysis of the Pythium vexans species group from woody agricultural hosts in South Africa reveal distinct groups within this taxon

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Pythium vexans fits into the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) clade K. In South Africa, as well as in other regions of the world, P. vexans isolates are known to be heterogeneous in their ITS sequences and may consist of more than one species. Therefore, this study examined the diversity of South...

  18. Membrane-based oligonucleotide array developed from multiple markers for the detection of many Phytophthora species

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Many Phytophthora species are destructive plant pathogens imposing severe threats to both natural and agricultural vegetation. Effective monitoring and accurate early detection are important means of preventing potential epidemics and outbreaks of such diseases. DNA array hybridization technique is ...

  19. Mapping whole genome shotgun sequence and variant calling in mammalian species without their reference genomes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Genomics research in mammals has produced reference genome sequences that are essential for identifying variation associated with disease. High quality reference genome sequences are now available for humans, model species, and economically important agricultural animals. Comparisons between these s...

  20. Emerging Agricultural Biotechnologies for Sustainable Agriculture and Food Security.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Jennifer A; Gipmans, Martijn; Hurst, Susan; Layton, Raymond; Nehra, Narender; Pickett, John; Shah, Dilip M; Souza, Thiago Lívio P O; Tripathi, Leena

    2016-01-20

    As global populations continue to increase, agricultural productivity will be challenged to keep pace without overtaxing important environmental resources. A dynamic and integrated approach will be required to solve global food insecurity and position agriculture on a trajectory toward sustainability. Genetically modified (GM) crops enhanced through modern biotechnology represent an important set of tools that can promote sustainable