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Sample records for dwarf shrub seeds

  1. High precipitation and seeded species competition reduce seeded shrub establishment during dryland restoration.

    PubMed

    Rinella, Matthew J; Hammond, Darcy H; Bryant, Ana-Elisa M; Kozar, Brian J

    2015-06-01

    Drylands comprise 40% of Earth's land mass and are critical to food security, carbon sequestration, and threatened and endangered wildlife. Exotic weed invasions, overgrazing, energy extraction, and other factors have degraded many drylands, and this has placed an increased emphasis on dryland restoration. The increased restoration focus has generated a wealth of experience, innovations and empirical data, yet the goal of restoring diverse, native, dryland plant assemblages composed of grasses, forbs, and shrubs has generally proven beyond reach. Of particular concern are shrubs, which often fail to establish or establish at trivially low densities. We used data from two Great Plains, USA coal mines to explore factors regulating shrub establishment. Our predictor data related to weather and restoration (e.g., seed rates, rock cover) variables, and our response data described shrub abundances on fields of the mines. We found that seeded non-shrubs, especially grasses, formed an important competitive barrier to shrub establishment: With every one standard deviation increase in non-shrub seed rate, the probability shrubs were present decreased ~0.1 and shrub cover decreased ~35%. Since new fields were seeded almost every year for > 20 years, the data also provided a unique opportunity to explore effects of stochastic drivers (i.e., precipitation, year effects). With every one standard deviation increase in precipitation the first growing season following seeding, the probability shrubs were present decreased ~0.07 and shrub cover decreased ~47%. High precipitation appeared to harm shrubs by increasing grass growth/competition. Also, weak evidence suggested shrub establishment was better in rockier fields where grass abundance/competition was lower. Multiple lines of evidence suggest reducing grass seed rates below levels typically used in Great Plains restoration would benefit shrubs without substantially impacting grass stand development over the long term. We used

  2. Seed distribution of four co-occurring grasses around Artemisia halodendron shrubs in a sandy habitat

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Feng-Rui; Zhao, Wen-Zhi; Kang, Ling-Fen; Liu, Ji-Liang; Huang, Zhi-Gang; Wang, Qi

    2009-05-01

    In a natural population of the perennial semi-shrub Artemisia halodendron in a shifting sandy habitat in the Horqin Desert of eastern Inner Mongolia, six isolated adult A. halodendron individuals of similar canopy size were chosen as target plants. The density of seeds in the top 5 cm soil depth around shrubs was measured using transects aligned to the four main wind directions and at different distances from the shrub base on both the windward and leeward sides. The effects of shrub presence on seed distribution of four co-occurring grasses were examined by linking seed distribution to seed traits. Of the four species, Setaris viridis and Eragrostis pilosa had small but similar seed mass, while Chloris virgata and Aristida adscensionis had large but similar seed mass. The species were grouped into two cohorts: small-seeded vs. large-seeded cohorts, and shrub presence effects on seed distribution of both cohorts were examined. We found marked difference in the seed distribution pattern among species, especially between the small-seeded and large-seeded cohorts. The small-seeded cohort had significantly higher seed accumulation on the windward than the leeward sides in the most and least prevailing wind directions and much higher seed accumulation on the leeward than the windward sides in the second and third most prevailing wind directions, while opposite patterns occurred in the large-seeded cohort. Four species also showed marked variation in the seed distribution pattern among transects and between windward and leeward sides of each transect. This study provided further evidence that shrubs embedded in a matrix of herbaceous plants is a key cause of spatial heterogeneity in seed availability of herbaceous species. However, seed distribution responses to the presence of shrubs will vary with species as well as with wind direction, sampling position (windward vs. leeward sides of the shrub) and distance from the shrub.

  3. The evolution of dwarf shrubs in alpine environments: a case study of Alchemilla in Africa

    PubMed Central

    Gehrke, Berit; Kandziora, Martha; Pirie, Michael D.

    2016-01-01

    Background and Aims Alpine and arctic environments worldwide, including high mountains, are dominated by short-stature woody plants (dwarf shrubs). This conspicuous life form asserts considerable influence on local environmental conditions above the treeline, creating its own microhabitat. This study reconstructs the evolution of dwarf shrubs in Alchemilla in the African tropical alpine environment, where they represent one of the largest clades and are among the most common and abundant plants. Methods Different phylogenetic inference methods were used with plastid and nuclear DNA sequence markers, molecular dating (BEAST and RelTime), analyses of diversification rate shifts (MEDUSA and BAMM) and ancestral character and area reconstructions (Mesquite). Key Results It is inferred that African Alchemilla species originated following long-distance dispersal to tropical East Africa, but that the evolution of dwarf shrubs occurred in Ethiopia and in tropical East Africa independently. Establishing a timeframe is challenging given inconsistencies in age estimates, but it seems likely that they originated in the Pleistocene, or at the earliest in the late Miocene. The adaptation to alpine-like environments in the form of dwarf shrubs has apparently not led to enhanced diversification rates. Ancestral reconstructions indicate reversals in Alchemilla from plants with a woody base to entirely herbaceous forms, a transition that is rarely reported in angiosperms. Conclusions Alchemilla is a clear example of in situ tropical alpine speciation. The dwarf shrub life form typical of African Alchemilla has evolved twice independently, further indicating its selective advantage in these harsh environments. However, it has not influenced diversification, which, although recent, was not rapid. PMID:26520565

  4. Realities and myths of the Teresken Syndrome--an evaluation of the exploitation of dwarf shrub resources in the Eastern Pamirs of Tajikistan.

    PubMed

    Kraudzun, Tobias; Vanselow, Kim André; Samimi, Cyrus

    2014-01-01

    In the Eastern Pamirs extensive livestock herding is the predominant land use option and dwarf shrubs - teresken (Krascheninnikovia ceratoides) and to a lesser extent wormwood (Artemisia spp.) - are an important source of thermal energy and are crucial forage plants, particularly in winter. For the post-Soviet period, many papers and reports suggest rapidly increasing exploitation rates with sometimes alarming figures for degradation. Conventional knowledge about the Pamirs pinpoints the frightening and irreversible extraction of teresken as a dwindling resource causing land degradation - termed the 'Teresken Syndrome'. However, these publications are based on limited empirical evidence. This paper discusses the socio-economic role of dwarf shrubs as fuel and forage - today and in the past - and provides an overview of the extent of dwarf shrub distribution and degraded areas. Although our observations confirm extensive dwarf shrub exploitation, general assumptions of severe desertification as a result of dwarf shrub extraction do not yield reliable scenarios. The effects of harvesting on the vegetation cover vary widely depending on extraction practices and yields of different dwarf shrub-dominated formations. Furthermore, considerable and increasing shares of energy needs are satisfied by animal manure and imported coal. On the other hand, for low-income households harvesting dwarf shrubs is an important and reliable option to ensure both their own household energy supply and an income source. We argue that the term 'Teresken Syndrome', which was introduced after the emergency replacement of Soviet coal supplies by dwarf shrubs in the 1990s, is not appropriate anymore to describe the current use of natural resources in the Eastern Pamirs. However, under the current economic circumstances the nexus remains that the Pamir people are caught in the dilemma of using dwarf shrubs as energy and as forage resource. However, the observed negotiation practices concerning

  5. Rapid revegetation by sowing seed mixtures of shrub and herbaceous species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, J. J.; Zhang, C. L.; Zhao, T. N.

    2015-01-01

    Fast revegetation by means of sowing seed mixture of shrub and herbaceous species is a measure to prevent bare soils from wind and water erosion. Field experiment was used to test the effect of species selection and the ratio of shrub to herbaceous species on vegetation formation and shrub growth. Results showed that herbaceous species hastened cover formation and maintained a high coverage for longer period. However, the growth of shrubs was hindered. In North China Plain or where the soil and climate are similar, the ratio of shrub to herbaceous seeds is proposed to be 6:4-7:3 (weight ratio). Among the herbaceous species tested, Festuca arundinacea Schreb. grows relatively slow so it should be mixed with other fast-growing species in the practice of rapid revegetation, and a seeding density lower than 6 g m-2 is proposed when applied; Orychophragmus violaceus O. E. Schulz. wilts when the seeds are ripe, leading to a significant decrease of coverage, so other species with different phenology should be involved when it is applied; Viola philippica Car. is a good ground cover plant, which grows fast and maintains a stable coverage form July to October, and a seeding density of 1.5 g m-2 is proposed for rapid revegetation.

  6. The role of rodents in the seed fate of a thorny shrub in an ancient wood pasture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scheper, Jeroen; Smit, Christian

    2011-03-01

    Thorny shrubs play a crucial role for the diversity and dynamics in wood pastures: they protect non-defended plants from large herbivores and thus facilitate tree establishment in the landscape through associational resistance. How thorny shrubs themselves establish in wood pastures - the main bottleneck for a dynamic shifting of grassland - shrub - woodland mosaics - is an essential unanswered question. We studied post-primary dispersal seed fate - i.e. removal, predation, secondary dispersal and survival of seeds after primary dispersal - of the thorny shrub blackthorn ( Prunus spinosa) in an ancient wood pasture in the Netherlands. Blackthorn seeds are primarily dispersed by frugivorous birds and may secondarily be dispersed by scatter-hoarding rodents. We performed two cafeteria-style experiments with blackthorn seeds placed on dishes in the dominant vegetation types. In the first we monitored seed removal in grassland, swards or blackthorn shrubs and determined rodent species abundance by live-trapping. In the second we followed tagged blackthorn seeds under shrubs and in swards to determine seed removal, predation, survival and secondary dispersal patterns. Tagged seeds were retrieved using a metal detector and by visual means. We recorded dispersal direction and distance, vegetation type, seed handling (burial, consumption) and rodent species responsible via bite marks. Seed removal and number of live-trapped rodents differed between vegetation types, with higher removal and rodent captures under shrubs than in swards and grassland. All retrieved seeds were depredated, predominantly by the wood mouse ( Apodemus sylvaticus). Disproportionally high seed numbers were retrieved in the vegetation type where originally placed (shrubs or swards). Our study suggests that rodents play an important role for blackthorn in wood pastures, predominantly as seed predators rather than secondary seed dispersers. Predation is particularly high under blackthorn shrubs

  7. Phytosociological study of the dwarf shrub heath of Simeonof Wilderness, Shumagin Islands, Southwestern Alaska

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Daniels, F.J.A.; Talbot, S. S.; Looman, Talbot S.; Schofield, W.B.

    2004-01-01

    The maritime dwarf shrub heath vegetation of the Northern Pacific, Simeonof Island, Shumagin Islands, Southwestern Alaska, was studied according to the Braun-Blanquet approach. Based on 30 releve??s of 16 m2 that include vascular plants, bryophytes, and lichens, two new associations could be described belonging to the class Loiseleurio-Vaccinietea (order Rhododendro-Vaccinietalia): Rubo-Empetretum nigri and Carici-Empetretum nigri. The wind-sheltered Rubo-Empetretum nigri (alliance Phyllodoco-Vaccinion) mainly occurs in the lowlands on level terrain or sloping sites at lower foot slopes of mountains on deeper, mesic soil; this association is the zonal vegetation of the lowlands. Boreal, widespread and amphi-Beringian species are prominent in the distribution-type spectrum of the vascular plants. Two variants of Rubo-Empetretum nigri are described. A Geranium erianthum variant occurs on south-facing slopes and is rich in vascular plants species. A Plagiothecium undulatum variant is restricted to northern exposures and is rich in bryophytes and lichens. A Carici-Empetretum nigri (alliance Loiseleurio-Diapension) occurs on shallow soil on wind exposed sites at higher elevations in the mountains. It is very rich in lichen species of arctic-alpine distribution. Canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) suggests that altitude, nutrient content of the soil and exposition are the most important differential ecological factors. Soil depth, total carbon and nitrogen content, plant available phosphorus and all other measured cation contents are higher in Rubo-Empetretum than in Carici-Empetretum. Literature comparisons confirm the occurrence of both associations in other areas on the Southwest Alaska Peninsula and Aleutian Islands. Presumably both associations have an amphi-Beringian distribution. The syntaxonomy of boreal-montane dwarf shrub heaths and synecological aspects are briefly discussed. ?? 2004 Gebru??der Borntraeger.

  8. Rapid revegetation by sowing seed mixtures of shrub and herbaceous species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Feng, J.; Zhang, C.; Zhao, T.; Zhang, Q.

    2015-05-01

    Fast revegetation by means of sowing seed mixtures of shrub and herbaceous species is a measure to prevent bare soils from wind and water erosion. A field experiment was used to test the effect of species selection and the ratio of shrub to herbaceous species on vegetation formation and shrub growth. Results showed that herbaceous species hastened cover formation and maintained a high coverage for a longer period. However, the growth of shrubs was hindered. In the North China Plain or where the soil and climate are similar, the ratio of shrub to herbaceous seeds is proposed to be 6 : 4-7 : 3 (weight ratio). Among the herbaceous species tested, Festuca arundinacea Schreb. grows relatively slow, so it should be mixed with other fast-growing species in the practice of rapid revegetation, and a seeding density lower than 6 g m-2 is proposed when applied; Orychophragmus violaceus O. E. Schulz. wilts when the seeds are ripe, leading to a significant decrease of coverage, so other species with different phenology should be involved when it is applied; Viola philippica Car. is a good ground cover plant which grows fast and maintains a stable coverage from July to October, and a seeding density of 1.5 g m-2 is proposed for rapid revegetation. Herbaceous species have different traits. Three different types of herbs were found in our experiment: slow-growing stable species (F. arundinacea), fast-growing unstable species (O. violaceus) and fast-growing stable species (V. philippica). Shrubs, slow-growing stable species and fast-growing unstable species should not be used alone because they cannot cover the ground fast or they cannot maintain a long period of good coverage. A small seeding rate of fast-growing stable species should be used to ensure a fair coverage against erosion. Because natural environmental conditions are heterogeneous and stochastic, more species should be added to enhance the stability of plant community.

  9. Effects of seed origin and irrigation on survival and growth of transplanted shrubs

    SciTech Connect

    Winkel, V.K.

    1995-10-01

    Revegetation is difficult in the Mojave Desert due to limited, erratic precipitation and extreme temperatures. Establishing plant cover by transplanting native shrubs is known to be a promising technique, but many questions still remain regarding its use on a large operational scale. A study was initiated on the US Department of Energy Nevada Test Site (NTS) to determine the effects of seed origin and irrigation on survival and growth of transplanted shrubs. Plants of three species (Larrea tridentata, Ambrosia dumosa, and Atriplex canescens) were grown in a greenhouse and hardened outdoors. Plants of all three species were produced from two seed sources: (1) seed collected from the NTS (Mojave Desert), and (2) commercially available seed collected from outside the NTS. One-year-old containerized plants (180 of each species) were transplanted to a site on the NTS and irrigated with two liters of water at one of the following frequencies: (1) at time of planting only, (2) at time of planting and monthly during the first growing season, and (3) at time of planting and twice monthly during the first growing season. After 16 months, survival of all species was generally greater than 80% and was unaffected by irrigation treatments. Survival of fourwing saltbush was significantly greater from local versus non-local seed. Survival of bursage and creosotebush was generally unaffected by seed origin. Shrub volumes regardless of species or seed origin increased during the first growing season, and then decreased during the second growing season. Shrub volumes for fourwing saltbush were significantly greater for shrubs from local versus non-local seed.

  10. Dormancy cycling and persistence of seeds in soil of a cold desert halophyte shrub

    PubMed Central

    Cao, Dechang; Baskin, Carol C.; Baskin, Jerry M.; Yang, Fan; Huang, Zhenying

    2014-01-01

    Background and Aims Formation of seed banks and dormancy cycling are well known in annual species, but not in woody species. In this study it was hypothesized that the long-lived halophytic cold desert shrub Kalidium gracile has a seed bank and dormancy cycling, which help restrict germination to a favourable time for seedling survival. Methods Fresh seeds were buried in November 2009 and exhumed and tested for germination monthly from May 2010 to December 2011 over a range of temperatures and salinities. Germination recovery and viability were determined after exposure to salinity and water stress. Seedling emergence and dynamics of the soil seed bank were investigated in the field. Key Results Seeds of K. gracile had a soil seed bank of 7030 seeds m−2 at the beginning of the growing season. About 72 % of the seeds were depleted from the soil seed bank during a growing season, and only 1·4 % of them gave rise to seedlings that germinated early enough to reach a stage of growth at which they could survive to overwinter. About 28 % of the seeds became part of a persistent soil seed bank. Buried seeds exhibited an annual non-dormancy/conditional dormancy (ND/CD) cycle, and germination varied in sensitivity to salinity during the cycle. Dormancy cycling is coordinated with seasonal environmental conditions in such a way that the seeds germinate in summer, when there is sufficient precipitation for seedling establishment. Conclusions Kalidium gracile has three life history traits that help ensure persistence at a site: a polycarpic perennial life cycle, a persistent seed bank and dormancy cycling. The annual ND/CD cycle in seeds of K. gracile contributes to seedling establishment of this species in the unpredictable desert environment and to maintenance of a persistent soil seed bank. This is the first report of a seed dormancy cycle in a cold desert shrub. PMID:24249808

  11. Pre-treating Seed to Enhance Germination of Desert Shrubs

    SciTech Connect

    W. K. Ostler; D. C. Anderson; D. J. Hansen

    2002-06-01

    Creosotebush [Larrea tridentata (D.C.) Cav.] and white bursage [Ambrosia dumosa (A. Gray) W.W. Payne] seeds were subjected to pre-treatments of rinsing and soaking in water and thiourea to enhance germination in laboratory experiments. The effects of darkness, temperature, seed source, and soil moisture were also evaluated in the laboratory. The best pre-treatment from the laboratory experiments, rinsing with water for 36 hours followed by drying, was field-tested at Fort Irwin, California. Two sites and two seeding dates (early March and mid April) were determined for each site. Five mulch treatments (no mulch, straw, gravel, chemical stabilizer, and plastic) were evaluated in combination with the seed pre-treatments. Field emergence was greatly enhanced with the seed pre-treatment for white bursage during the March (18-42% increase in germination) and April seedings (16-23% increase in germination). Creosotebush showed poor germination during March (2-5%) when soil temperatures averaged 15 C, but germination increased during the April trials (6-43%) when soil temperatures averaged 23 C. The seed pre-treatment during the April trials increased germination from 16-23%. The plastic mulch treatment increased germination dramatically during both the March and April trials. The plastic mulch increased soil temperatures (8-10 C)and maintained high humidity during germination. Both the chemical stabilizer and the gravel mulches improved germination over the control while the straw mulch decreased germination. These results suggest that seed pre-treatments combined with irrigation and mulch are effective techniques to establish these two dominant Mojave Desert species from seed.

  12. Soil seed bank, factors controlling germination and establishment of a Mediterranean shrub: Pistacia lentiscus L.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García-Fayos, Patricio; Verdú, Miguel

    1998-08-01

    The recruitment strategy of Pistacia lentiscus, an evergreen sclerophyllous shrub inhabiting the Mediterranean region, was studied in order to identify the key factors controlling seedling establishment and survival. The capacity to develop a seed bank, the loss of seed viability with time, the presence of dormancy mechanisms, the conditions to promote seed germination and the seedling dynamics were investigated. The results show that P. lentiscus has a transient seed bank with rapid seed germination occurring within the year. Dormancy was not present as seeds germinated successfully without light or temperature pretreatments. Only pulp removal and a long and abundant rain event (≥ 7 days; ≥ 100 L·m -2) appeared to be necessary for germination. Seed viability decreased drastically after 1 year. More seedlings emerged under shrub canopy than in open sites, as expected by the seed dispersal pattern and canopy effects on plant establishment. The high mortality observed in the few weeks after establishment indicates that seedling survival is a bottleneck in the recruitment process of P. lentiscus in dense shrublands. Some seedlings survived in a latent mode for at least 4 years.

  13. Dwarf shrub hydraulics: two Vaccinium species (Vaccinium myrtillus, Vaccinium vitis-idaea) of the European Alps compared.

    PubMed

    Ganthaler, Andrea; Mayr, Stefan

    2015-12-01

    Vaccinium myrtillus and Vaccinium vitis-idaea are two dwarf shrubs widespread in the European Alps. We studied the hydraulics of these species hypothesizing that (1) the hydraulic architecture of dwarf shrubs differs from trees, (2) hydraulic properties reflect the species' ecological amplitude and (3) hydraulic properties vary spatially and seasonally. Key hydraulic parameters (osmotic potential, turgor loss point, xylem hydraulic conductivity, vulnerability to drought-induced embolism, stomata closure, drought-induced cell damage and embolism repair) and related wood anatomical traits (conduit diameter and conduit wall reinforcement) were analyzed at four sites in Tyrol, Austria. Both species exhibited low hydraulic safety as well as low hydraulic efficiency. Fifty percentage embolism accumulated at -2.08 (V. myrtillus) and -1.97 MPa (V. vitis-idaea), 88% stomata closure was at -2.19 and -2.35 MPa, respectively. After drought, both species showed embolism repair on re-watering. Site-specific variation within species was low, while seasonal changes in embolism resistance and turgor loss point were observed. Results indicate that studied Vaccinium species have a high risk for embolism formation. This is balanced by refilling capacities, which are probably based on the small growth height of dwarf shrubs. V. vitis-idaea, which occurs on drier sites, showed more efficient repair and a lower turgor loss point than V. myrtillus.

  14. Growth and community responses of alpine dwarf shrubs to in situ CO₂ enrichment and soil warming.

    PubMed

    Dawes, Melissa A; Hagedorn, Frank; Zumbrunn, Thomas; Handa, Ira Tanya; Hättenschwiler, Stephan; Wipf, Sonja; Rixen, Christian

    2011-08-01

    • Rising CO₂ concentrations and the associated global warming are expected to have large impacts on high-elevation ecosystems, yet long-term multifactor experiments in these environments are rare. • We investigated how growth of dominant dwarf shrub species (Vaccinium myrtillus, Vaccinium gaultherioides and Empetrum hermaphroditum) and community composition in the understorey of larch and pine trees responded to 9 yr of CO₂ enrichment and 3 yr of soil warming at the treeline in the Swiss Alps. • Vaccinium myrtillus was the only species that showed a clear positive effect of CO₂ on growth, with no decline over time in the annual shoot growth response. Soil warming stimulated V. myrtillus growth even more than elevated CO₂ and was accompanied by increased plant-available soil nitrogen (N) and leaf N concentrations. Growth of Vaccinium gaultherioides and E. hermaphroditum was not influenced by warming. Vascular plant species richness declined in elevated CO₂ plots with larch, while the number of moss and lichen species decreased under warming. • Ongoing environmental change could lead to less diverse plant communities and increased dominance of the particularly responsive V. myrtillus in the studied alpine treeline. These changes are the consequence of independent CO₂ and soil warming effects, a result that should facilitate predictive modelling approaches.

  15. Impact of early and late winter icing events on sub-arctic dwarf shrubs.

    PubMed

    Preece, C; Phoenix, G K

    2014-01-01

    Polar regions are predicted to undergo large increases in winter temperature and an increased frequency of freeze-thaw cycles, which can cause ice layers in the snow pack and ice encasement of vegetation. Early or late winter timing of ice encasement could, however, modify the extent of damage caused to plants. To determine impacts of the date of ice encasement, a novel field experiment was established in sub-arctic Sweden, with icing events simulated in January and March 2008 and 2009. In the subsequent summers, reproduction, phenology, growth and mortality, as well as physiological indicators of leaf damage were measured in the three dominant dwarf shrubs: Vaccinium uliginosum, Vaccinium vitis-idaea and Empetrum nigrum. It was hypothesised that January icing would be more damaging compared to March icing due to the longer duration of ice encasement. Following 2 years of icing, E. nigrum berry production was 83% lower in January-iced plots compared to controls, and V. vitis-idaea electrolyte leakage was increased by 69%. Conversely, electrolyte leakage of E. nigrum was 25% lower and leaf emergence of V. vitis-idaea commenced 11 days earlier in March-iced plots compared to control plots in 2009. There was no effect of icing on any of the other parameters measured, indicating that overall these study species have moderate to high tolerance to ice encasement. Even much longer exposure under the January icing treatment does not clearly increase damage.

  16. Seed Mucilage Improves Seedling Emergence of a Sand Desert Shrub

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Xuejun; Baskin, Carol C.; Baskin, Jerry M.; Liu, Guangzheng; Huang, Zhenying

    2012-01-01

    The success of seedling establishment of desert plants is determined by seedling emergence response to an unpredictable precipitation regime. Sand burial is a crucial and frequent environmental stress that impacts seedling establishment on sand dunes. However, little is known about the ecological role of seed mucilage in seedling emergence in arid sandy environments. We hypothesized that seed mucilage enhances seedling emergence in a low precipitation regime and under conditions of sand burial. In a greenhouse experiment, two types of Artemisia sphaerocephala achenes (intact and demucilaged) were exposed to different combinations of burial depth (0, 5, 10, 20, 40 and 60 mm) and irrigation regimes (low, medium and high, which simulated the precipitation amount and frequency in May, June and July in the natural habitat, respectively). Seedling emergence increased with increasing irrigation. It was highest at 5 mm sand burial depth and ceased at burial depths greater than 20 mm in all irrigation regimes. Mucilage significantly enhanced seedling emergence at 0, 5 and 10 mm burial depths in low irrigation, at 0 and 5 mm burial depths in medium irrigation and at 0 and 10 mm burial depths in high irrigation. Seed mucilage also reduced seedling mortality at the shallow sand burial depths. Moreover, mucilage significantly affected seedling emergence time and quiescence and dormancy percentages. Our findings suggest that seed mucilage plays an ecologically important role in successful seedling establishment of A. sphaerocephala by improving seedling emergence and reducing seedling mortality in stressful habitats of the sandy desert environment. PMID:22511952

  17. Seed dormancy-breaking in a cold desert shrub in relation to sand temperature and moisture.

    PubMed

    Liu, Huiliang; Abudureheman, Buhailiqiemu; Zhang, Lingwei; Baskin, Jerry M; Baskin, Carol C; Zhang, Daoyuan

    2017-01-24

    Seasonal periodicity of seed germination and its relationship to seasonal changes in temperature and soil moisture have been well studied in seeds of species with physiological dormancy. However, relatively little information is available on the role of these environmental factors in controlling germination of seeds with physical dormancy (PY). Our primary aim was to determine if seeds of the cold desert sand dune semi-shrub Eremosparton songoricum exhibits seasonal periodicity of seed germination and the relationship between seed dormancy break and soil temperature and moisture. In the laboratory, seeds incubated on dry, wet, wet-dry and dry-wet sand were exposed to a 1-year sequence of temperature regimes simulating those in the field. In the field, seeds were buried at different depths on a sand dune, and germination of periodically exhumed seeds was tested at five temperature regimes during a 2-year period. In the one-year sequence of simulated natural temperature regimes, breaking of PY was more effective under constantly wet than under constantly dry conditions, and germination percentage was significantly higher under dry-wet than under wet-dry conditions. Seeds buried in the field exhibited a distinct peak of germination in spring and little or no germination in other seasons. The final (two-year) monthly cumulative germination percentage differed among burial depths and temperature, and it was highest (47%) in seeds buried at 3 cm and tested at 25/10 °C. A seed cohort of E. songoricum likely exhibits a long-term annual periodicity of spring germination in the field, and dormancy break appears to be driven by low (winter) temperatures and relatively high sand moisture content. To our knowledge this is the first study to document seasonal periodicity in seed germination in a cold desert species with PY and to identify the mechanism (at the whole-seed level) of its occurrence.

  18. Matorral and reclamation. The contribution of scrubs and dwarf shrubs to soil and water conservation in Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cerdà, A.; González Hidalgo, J. C.

    2009-04-01

    The Mediterranean Matorral (scrubs and dwarf shrubs) was seen by John Thornes as a protective vegetative cover of semiarid lands. His studies on matorral triggered the research, vocations and scientific work of researchers and contributed with a relevant knowledge to the environmental studies in Spain. This research reviews the changes in land use and the use of matorral in Spain. A review of the research done on the effect of matorral on soil and water losses is presented. Books, scientific papers, book chapters and research reports are being reviewed to report how matorral control the soil and water losses under different climatic conditions in Spain. The main conclusion is that scrubs and dwarf shrubs are very efficient in controlling the soil and water losses under semiarid climatic conditions were trees are rare. Nevertheless, scrub has been neglected by the Spanish forestry policy-makers and sometimes the shrubs cover is removed to develop afforestations, mainly with Aleppo pine. Palabras clave: Matorral, Soil, Water, Losses, Spain, Land use, Land management.

  19. Relationship between Shoot-rooting and Root-sprouting Abilities and the Carbohydrate and Nitrogen Reserves of Mediterranean Dwarf Shrubs

    PubMed Central

    Palacio, Sara; Maestro, Melchor; Montserrat-Martí, Gabriel

    2007-01-01

    Background and Aims This study analysed the differences in nitrogen (N), non-structural carbohydrates (NSC) and biomass allocation to the roots and shoots of 18 species of Mediterranean dwarf shrubs with different shoot-rooting and resprouting abilities. Root N and NSC concentrations of strict root-sprouters and species resprouting from the base of the stems were also compared. Methods Soluble sugars (SS), starch and N concentrations were assessed in roots and shoots. The root : shoot ratio of each species was obtained by thorough root excavations. Cross-species analyses were complemented by phylogenetically independent contrasts (PICs). Key Results Shoot-rooting species showed a preferential allocation of starch to shoots rather than roots as compared with non-shoot-rooting species. Resprouters displayed greater starch concentrations than non-sprouters in both shoots and roots. Trends were maintained after PICs analyses, but differences became weak when root-sprouters versus non-root-sprouters were compared. Within resprouters, strict root-sprouters showed greater root concentrations and a preferential allocation of starch to the roots than stem-sprouters. No differences were found in the root : shoot ratio of species with different rooting and resprouting abilities. Conclusions The shoot-rooting ability of Mediterranean dwarf shrubs seems to depend on the preferential allocation of starch and SS to shoots, though alternative C-sources such as current photosynthates may also be involved. In contrast to plants from other mediterranean areas of the world, the resprouting ability of Mediterranean dwarf shrubs is not related to a preferential allocation of N, NSC and biomass to roots. PMID:17728338

  20. A mast-seeding desert shrub regulates population dynamics and behavior of its heteromyid dispersers.

    PubMed

    Auger, Janene; Meyer, Susan E; Jenkins, Stephen H

    2016-04-01

    Granivorous rodent populations in deserts are primarily regulated through precipitation-driven resource pulses rather than pulses associated with mast-seeding, a pattern more common in mesic habitats. We studied heteromyid responses to mast-seeding in the desert shrub blackbrush (Coleogyne ramosissima), a regionally dominant species in the Mojave-Great Basin Desert transition zone. In a 5-year study at Arches National Park, Utah, USA, we quantified spatiotemporal variation in seed resources in mast and intermast years in blackbrush-dominated and mixed desert vegetation and measured responses of Dipodomys ordii (Ord's kangaroo rat) and Perognathus flavescens (plains pocket mouse). In blackbrush-dominated vegetation, blackbrush seeds comprised >79% of seed production in a mast year, but 0% in the first postmast year. Kangaroo rat abundance in blackbrush-dominated vegetation was highest in the mast year, declined sharply at the end of the first postmast summer, and then remained at low levels for 3 years. Pocket mouse abundance was not as strongly associated with blackbrush seed production. In mixed desert vegetation, kangaroo rat abundance was higher and more uniform through time. Kangaroo rats excluded the smaller pocket mice from resource-rich patches including a pipeline disturbance and also moved their home range centers closer to this disturbance in a year of low blackbrush seed production. Home range size for kangaroo rats was unrelated to seed resource density in the mast year, but resource-poor home ranges were larger (P < 0.001) in the first postmast year, when resources were limiting. Blackbrush seeds are higher in protein and fat but lower in carbohydrates than the more highly preferred seeds of Indian ricegrass (Achnatherum hymenoides) and have similar energy value per unit of handling time. Kangaroo rats cached seeds of these two species in similar spatial configurations, implying that they were equally valued as stored food resources. Blackbrush mast

  1. Annual dormancy cycles in buried seeds of shrub species: germination ecology of Sideritis serrata (Labiatae).

    PubMed

    Copete, M A; Herranz, J M; Ferrandis, P; Copete, E

    2015-07-01

    The germination ecology of Sideritis serrata was investigated in order to improve ex-situ propagation techniques and management of their habitat. Specifically, we analysed: (i) influence of temperature, light conditions and seed age on germination patterns; (ii) phenology of germination; (iii) germinative response of buried seeds to seasonal temperature changes; (iv) temperature requirements for induction and breaking of secondary dormancy; (v) ability to form persistent soil seed banks; and (vi) seed bank dynamics. Freshly matured seeds showed conditional physiological dormancy, germinating at low and cool temperatures but not at high ones (28/14 and 32/18 °C). Germination ability increased with time of dry storage, suggesting the existence of non-deep physiological dormancy. Under unheated shade-house conditions, germination was concentrated in the first autumn. S. serrata seeds buried and exposed to natural seasonal temperature variations in the shade-house, exhibited an annual conditional dormancy/non-dormancy cycle, coming out of conditional dormancy in summer and re-entering it in winter. Non-dormant seeds were clearly induced into dormancy when stratified at 5 or 15/4 °C for 8 weeks. Dormant seeds, stratified at 28/14 or 32/18 °C for 16 weeks, became non-dormant if they were subsequently incubated over a temperature range from 15/4 to 32/18 °C. S. serrata is able to form small persistent soil seed banks. The maximum seed life span in the soil was 4 years, decreasing with burial depth. This is the second report of an annual conditional dormancy/non-dormancy cycle in seeds of shrub species.

  2. Potential toxic effect on aquatic fauna by the dwarf shrub Empetrum hermaphroditum.

    PubMed

    Brännäs, Eva; Nilsson, Marie-Charlotte; Nilsson, Linda; Gallet, Christiane; Brännäs, Kurt; Berglind, Rune; Eriksson, Lars-Ove; Leffler, Per-Erik; Zackrisson, Olle

    2004-01-01

    The common evergreen dwarf shrub Empetrum hermaphroditum has influence on the functioning of boreal terrestrial ecosystems in northern Sweden. The negative effects of E. hermaphroditum are partly attributed to the production of the dihydrostilbene, batatasin-III, which is released from leaves and litter by rain and snowmelt. In this study, we investigated whether batatasin-III is carried by runoff into streams and lakes during the snowmelt period and whether it is also potentially hazardous to aquatic fauna. Sampling of water from streams and a lake for which the surrounding terrestrial vegetation is dominated by E. hermaphroditum was done during the snowmelt period in May 1993 and in 1998, and analyzed for batatasin-III. Using 24- and 48-hr standard toxicity tests, we analyzed toxicity to brown trout (Salmo trutta) alevins and juvenile water fleas (Daphnia magna). Toxicity (proportion of dead individuals) to trout was tested at pH 6.5 and compared with that of a phenol within a range of concentrations. In the toxicity (proportion of immobilized individuals) test on D. magna, the interactive effect of pH (pH 5.5-7.0) was included. Concentration of batatasin-III was generally higher in 1998 than in 1993 and showed peak levels during snowmelt. Concentration in ephemeral runnels > the lake > streams running through clear-cuts dominated by E. hermaphroditum > control streams lacking adjacent E. hermaphroditum vegetation. The maximum concentration of batatasin-III found was 1.06 mg l(-1). The proportion of dead yolk sac alevins increased significantly (P < 0.001) with increasing concentrations of batatasin-III and time of exposure. After 24 hr, EC50 was 10 mg l(-1). It was 2 mg l(-1) after 48 hr. The effect of phenol was negligible, indicating a specific phytotoxic effect of the bibenzyl structure of batatasin-III. The proportion of mobile D. magna became significantly smaller (P < 0.001) with increasing concentrations of batatasin-III, with decreasing pH, and with

  3. Bird and ant synergy increases the seed dispersal effectiveness of an ornithochoric shrub.

    PubMed

    Camargo, Paulo H S A; Martins, Milene M; Feitosa, Rodrigo M; Christianini, Alexander V

    2016-06-01

    Seed dispersal may involve different vectors of dispersal in two or more sequential phases (i.e., diplochory). However, contributions of each phase to the overall seed dispersal effectiveness (SDE) are poorly understood and hard to evaluate due to post-dispersal processes that affect seed and seedling survival. We investigated the simultaneous bird (phase 1, in plant canopy) and ant (phase 2, on the floor) contributions to SDE with the ornithochoric shrub Erythroxylum ambiguum in a Brazilian Atlantic forest. Twelve species of birds fed on fruit and dispersed approximately 26 % of the seed crop. The remaining seed crop, 90 % of which contained viable seeds, fell to the ground beneath the parental plant. Ants either cleaned seeds in fruits or carried fallen fruit and seeds from bird feces to their nests. Although E. ambiguum has no adaptation for ant dispersal, ants were as quantitatively important as birds. Birds and ants equally increased germination rates compared to controls. However, birds deposited seeds farther from the parent, where seedling survival was higher (78 %) than it was beneath the parent (44 %), whereas ants carried seeds to their nests, where seedling survival was higher (83 %) than in controls away from their nests (63 %). Diplochory allowed a 42 % increase in SDE compared to dispersal in phase 1 alone. High lipid content in the fruit pulp of E. ambiguum may facilitate the inclusion of ants in a second step of dispersal after diaspores reach the floor. Ants can also buffer the dispersal of diplochorous plants against decreases in phase 1 dispersers.

  4. Soil seed-bank structure and seed-germination dynamics contribute to pulsed shrub encroachment in a grassland-shrubland Chihuahuan ecotone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moreno de las Heras, Mariano; Turnbull, Laura; Wainwright, John

    2015-04-01

    Shrub encroachment is pervasive in many arid and semi-arid landscapes worldwide. Large areas of desert grasslands in southwestern USA have shifted to sparse shrublands dominated by woody species over the last 150 years, accompanied by accelerated soil erosion. A complex range of mechanisms has been suggested to explain the occurrence of this phenomenon, including land-use change, climate variations, and soil erosion feedbacks of vegetation change. An important step to understand patterns in species dominance at desert grassland-shrubland transitions is the understanding of limitations on plant establishment imposed by the shrub-encroachment process. We analyze the structure of soil seed banks and the environmental limitations for seed germination (i.e. soil-water availability and temperature) of dominant species (black grama and creosotebush) across a Chihuahuan grassland-shrubland ecotone (Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge, New Mexico). Seed density in soils across the ecotone is generally low (200-400 seeds m-2), although is largely concentrated in vegetation clumps (reaching peaks up to 800-1200 seeds m-2 in grass and shrub patches). Species composition in the soil seed-bank is strongly affected by shrub encroachment, with seed densities of grass species (and particularly for black grama) sharply decreasing in shrub-dominated areas. Optimal temperature for seed germination of both black grama and creosotebush (20-25°C) suggests synchronization of plant establishment with the summer monsoonal period. Water-level limitations for seed germination are similar for the two species (about 8-10% soil moisture), although creosotebush seeds need a longer time under optimal water-availability conditions for germination (about 12 days) than black grama seeds (about 7 days). Analysis of temporal series of field-based and simulated soil-moisture levels suggests that creosotebush requires very strong monsoonal precipitation for plant establishment, and therefore shrub

  5. Growth and Phenology of Three Dwarf Shrub Species in a Six-Year Soil Warming Experiment at the Alpine Treeline

    PubMed Central

    Anadon-Rosell, Alba; Rixen, Christian; Cherubini, Paolo; Wipf, Sonja; Hagedorn, Frank; Dawes, Melissa A.

    2014-01-01

    Global warming can have substantial impacts on the phenological and growth patterns of alpine and Arctic species, resulting in shifts in plant community composition and ecosystem dynamics. We evaluated the effects of a six-year experimental soil warming treatment (+4°C, 2007–2012) on the phenology and growth of three co-dominant dwarf shrub species growing in the understory of Larix decidua and Pinus uncinata at treeline in the Swiss Alps. We monitored vegetative and reproductive phenology of Vaccinium myrtillus, Vaccinium gaultherioides and Empetrum hermaphroditum throughout the early growing season of 2012 and, following a major harvest at peak season, we measured the biomass of above-ground ramet fractions. For all six years of soil warming we measured annual shoot growth of the three species and analyzed ramet age and xylem ring width of V. myrtillus. Our results show that phenology of the three species was more influenced by snowmelt timing, and also by plot tree species (Larix or Pinus) in the case of V. myrtillus, than by soil warming. However, the warming treatment led to increased V. myrtillus total above-ground ramet biomass (+36% in 2012), especially new shoot biomass (+63% in 2012), as well as increased new shoot increment length and xylem ring width (+22% and +41%, respectively; average for 2007–2012). These results indicate enhanced overall growth of V. myrtillus under soil warming that was sustained over six years and was not caused by an extended growing period in early summer. In contrast, E. hermaphroditum only showed a positive shoot growth response to warming in 2011 (+21%), and V. gaultherioides showed no significant growth response. Our results indicate that V. myrtillus might have a competitive advantage over the less responsive co-occurring dwarf shrub species under future global warming. PMID:24956273

  6. Growth and phenology of three dwarf shrub species in a six-year soil warming experiment at the alpine treeline.

    PubMed

    Anadon-Rosell, Alba; Rixen, Christian; Cherubini, Paolo; Wipf, Sonja; Hagedorn, Frank; Dawes, Melissa A

    2014-01-01

    Global warming can have substantial impacts on the phenological and growth patterns of alpine and Arctic species, resulting in shifts in plant community composition and ecosystem dynamics. We evaluated the effects of a six-year experimental soil warming treatment (+4°C, 2007-2012) on the phenology and growth of three co-dominant dwarf shrub species growing in the understory of Larix decidua and Pinus uncinata at treeline in the Swiss Alps. We monitored vegetative and reproductive phenology of Vaccinium myrtillus, Vaccinium gaultherioides and Empetrum hermaphroditum throughout the early growing season of 2012 and, following a major harvest at peak season, we measured the biomass of above-ground ramet fractions. For all six years of soil warming we measured annual shoot growth of the three species and analyzed ramet age and xylem ring width of V. myrtillus. Our results show that phenology of the three species was more influenced by snowmelt timing, and also by plot tree species (Larix or Pinus) in the case of V. myrtillus, than by soil warming. However, the warming treatment led to increased V. myrtillus total above-ground ramet biomass (+36% in 2012), especially new shoot biomass (+63% in 2012), as well as increased new shoot increment length and xylem ring width (+22% and +41%, respectively; average for 2007-2012). These results indicate enhanced overall growth of V. myrtillus under soil warming that was sustained over six years and was not caused by an extended growing period in early summer. In contrast, E. hermaphroditum only showed a positive shoot growth response to warming in 2011 (+21%), and V. gaultherioides showed no significant growth response. Our results indicate that V. myrtillus might have a competitive advantage over the less responsive co-occurring dwarf shrub species under future global warming.

  7. Dense understory dwarf bamboo alters the retention of canopy tree seeds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qian, Feng; Zhang, Tengda; Guo, Qinxue; Tao, Jianping

    2016-05-01

    Tree seed retention is thought to be an important factor in the process of forest community regeneration. Although dense understory dwarf bamboo has been considered to have serious negative effects on the regeneration of forest community species, little attention has been paid to the relationship between dwarf bamboo and seed retention. In a field experiment we manipulated the density of Fargesia decurvata, a common understory dwarf bamboo, to investigate the retention of seeds from five canopy tree species in an evergreen and deciduous broad-leaved mixed forest in Jinfoshan National Nature Reserve, SW China. We found that the median survival time and retention ratio of seeds increased with the increase in bamboo density. Fauna discriminately altered seed retention in bamboo groves of different densities. Arthropods reduced seed survival the most, and seeds removed decreased with increasing bamboo density. Birds removed or ate more seeds in groves of medium bamboo density and consumed fewer seeds in dense or sparse bamboo habitats. Rodents removed a greater number of large and highly profitable seeds in dense bamboo groves but more small and thin-husked seeds in sparse bamboo groves. Seed characteristics, including seed size, seed mass and seed profitability, were important factors affecting seed retention. The results suggested that dense understory dwarf bamboo not only increased seeds concealment and reduced the probability and speed of seed removal but also influenced the trade-off between predation and risk of animal predatory strategies, thereby impacting the quantity and composition of surviving seeds. Our results also indicated that dense understory dwarf bamboo and various seed characteristics can provide good opportunities for seed storage and seed germination and has a potential positive effect on canopy tree regeneration.

  8. Reciprocal carbon and nitrogen transfer between an ericaceous dwarf shrub and fungi isolated from Piceirhiza bicolorata ectomycorrhizas.

    PubMed

    Grelet, Gwen-Aëlle; Johnson, David; Paterson, Eric; Anderson, Ian C; Alexander, Ian J

    2009-01-01

    The overstorey coniferous trees and understorey ericaceous dwarf shrubs of northern temperate and boreal forests have previously been considered to form mycorrhizas with taxonomically and functionally distinct groups of fungi. Here, we tested the hypothesis that Meliniomyces variabilis and Meliniomyces bicolor, isolated from Piceirhiza bicolorata ectomycorrhizas of pine, can function as ericoid mycorrhizal symbionts with Vaccinium vitis-idaea. We used split-compartment microcosms to measure the reciprocal exchange of (13)C and (15)N between V. vitis-idaea and three fungal isolates in the Hymenoscyphus ericae aggregate isolated from Scots pine ectomycorrhizas (M. variabilis and M. bicolor) or Vaccinium roots (M. variabilis). The extramatrical fungal mycelium of labelled mycorrhizal plants was significantly enriched in (13)C, and the leaves were significantly enriched in (15)N, compared with nonmycorrhizal and nonlabelled controls. * These findings show for the first time that fungi in the H. ericae aggregate, isolated from pine ectomycorrhizas, can transfer C and N and can thus form functional ericoid mycorrhizas in an understorey ericaceous shrub.

  9. Habitat fragmentation and altered fire regime create trade-offs for an obligate seeding shrub.

    PubMed

    Regan, Helen M; Crookston, John B; Swab, Rebecca; Franklin, Janet; Lawson, Dawn M

    2010-04-01

    Habitat loss is widely considered the greatest threat to biodiversity. However, habitat loss brings with it myriad other threats that exacerbate impacts to biodiversity. For instance, altered fire regime is associated with habitat loss and fragmentation with unknown consequences to biodiversity. Plant functional groups that rely on fire to complete their life cycle may be adversely affected by disruptions to the natural fire regime, particularly when coupled with population declines due to habitat loss. We used a spatially explicit stochastic population model linked with fire hazard functions to investigate the cumulative effects of habitat loss, fragmentation, and altered fire regime on the expected minimum abundance of a long-lived obligate-seeding shrub, Ceanothus greggii var. perplexans. This species is endemic to the California Floristic Province, a biodiversity hotspot, and is representative of a functional group of plants found in many fire-prone ecosystems. We tested the impact of a range of different fire frequencies under three different combinations of fuel accumulation and weather. The best average fire return interval for population abundance was consistently in the range of 30-50 years. However, observed average fire return intervals in highly fragmented areas can be approximately 20 years or less, and model results show this to be detrimental to C. greggii populations. Results also show that if fires are uncorrelated across habitat fragments then the impact of altered fire regime on populations is worse than the impact of habitat fragmentation because of spatial and temporal decoupling of fire events across the landscape. However, the negative impacts of altered fire regime are outweighed by habitat loss as fragmentation increases. Our results show that large unplanned fires, operating under an altered fire regime, are ultimately detrimental to perennial obligate-seeding shrubs in fragmented landscapes.

  10. Small-scale patterns in snowmelt timing affect gene flow and the distribution of genetic diversity in the alpine dwarf shrub Salix herbacea

    PubMed Central

    Cortés, A J; Waeber, S; Lexer, C; Sedlacek, J; Wheeler, J A; van Kleunen, M; Bossdorf, O; Hoch, G; Rixen, C; Wipf, S; Karrenberg, S

    2014-01-01

    Current threats to biodiversity, such as climate change, are thought to alter the within-species genetic diversity among microhabitats in highly heterogeneous alpine environments. Assessing the spatial organization and dynamics of genetic diversity within species can help to predict the responses of organisms to environmental change. In this study, we evaluated whether small-scale heterogeneity in snowmelt timing restricts gene flow between microhabitats in the common long-lived dwarf shrub Salix herbacea L. We surveyed 273 genets across 12 early- and late-snowmelt sites (that is, ridges and snowbeds) in the Swiss Alps for phenological variation over 2 years and for genetic variation using seven SSR markers. Phenological differentiation triggered by differences in snowmelt timing did not correlate with genetic differentiation between microhabitats. On the contrary, extensive gene flow appeared to occur between microhabitats and slightly less extensively among adjacent mountains. However, ridges exhibited significantly lower levels of genetic diversity than snowbeds, and patterns of effective population size (Ne) and migration (Nem) between microhabitats were strongly asymmetric, with ridges acting as sources and snowbeds as sinks. As no recent genetic bottlenecks were detected in the studied sites, this asymmetry is likely to reflect current meta-population dynamics of the species dominated by gene flow via seeds rather than ancient re-colonization after the last glacial period. Overall, our results suggest that seed dispersal prevents snowmelt-driven genetic isolation, and snowbeds act as sinks of genetic diversity. We discuss the consequences of such small-scale variation in gene flow and diversity levels for population responses to climate change. PMID:24619183

  11. The formation of the patterns of desert shrub communities on the Western Ordos Plateau, China: the roles of seed dispersal and sand burial.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yange; Yang, Xiaohui; Shi, Zhongjie

    2013-01-01

    The western Ordos Plateau is a key area of shrub diversity and a National Nature Reserve of endangered shrub species in north-west China. Desert expansion is becoming the most important threat to these endangered species. However, little is known about the effects of sand burial on the dynamics of the shrub community. This study aims to investigate how the shrubs as a community and as different individual shrubs respond to the disturbances caused by the desert expansion. The approach used by this study is to separate the seed-dispersal strategy from the sand-burial forces that are involved in structuring the shrub communities at different disturbance stages. Four communities for different disturbance stages were surveyed by using 50×50 m plots. The individual shrubs were classified into coloniser and successor groups at the seed-dispersal stage and strong and weak sand-burial tolerance groups at the sand-expansion stage. We employed spatial point pattern analysis with null models for each community to examine the seed-dispersal strategy and sand-burial forces affecting community distribution patterns. At the seed-dispersal stage, the interactions between the colonisers and the successors showed significant positive correlation at a scale of 0-1 m and significant negative correlation at a scale of 2 m; significant negative correlations between the groups with strong and weak sand-burial tolerance in the early stage of sand expansion at scales of 3-6 m, and significant positive correlation in the later stage of sand expansion at a scale of 13 m, were found. Seed-dispersal strategy is a reasonable mechanism to explain the shrub community pattern formation in the earlier stages, whereas sand burial is the primary reason for the disappearance of shrubs with weak sand-burial tolerance, this irreversible disturbance causes homogenisation of the community structure and produces aging populations of shrub species. This has an important influence on the succession direction

  12. Irrigation and fertilization effects on seed number, size, germination and seedling growth: implications for desert shrub establishment.

    PubMed

    Breen, A N; Richards, J H

    2008-08-01

    Plants with limited resources adjust partitioning among growth, survival, and reproduction. We tested the effects of water and nutrient amendments on seed production, size, and quality in Sarcobatus vermiculatus (greasewood) to assess the magnitude and importance of changes in reproductive partitioning. In addition, we assessed interactions among the environment of seed-producing plants (adult plant scale), seed size, and seedling microenvironment (seedling scale) on successful seedling establishment. Interactions of these factors determine the scale of resource heterogeneity that affects seedling establishment in deserts. Both total number of seeds produced per plant and seed quality (weight and germination) increased significantly in the enriched treatment in a 3-year field experiment. Seedling length 3 days after germination and seed N concentration, other measures of seed quality, were higher for seed from both irrigated and enriched plants than for seed from control plants. Field S. vermiculatus seed production and quality can be substantially increased with irrigation and nutrient enrichment at the adult plant scale and this allows management of seed availability for restoration. However, based on a greenhouse study, seedling environment, not the environment of the seed-producing plant or seed size, was the most important factor affecting seedling germination, survival, and growth. Thus it appears that production of more seed may be more important than improved seed quality, because higher quality seed did not compensate for a low-resource seedling environment. For both natural establishment and restoration this suggests that heterogeneity at the scale of seedling microsites, perhaps combined with fertilization of adult shrubs (or multi-plant patches), would produce the greatest benefit for establishing seedlings in the field.

  13. Thermogenesis-triggered seed dispersal in dwarf mistletoe.

    PubMed

    deBruyn, Rolena A J; Paetkau, Mark; Ross, Kelly A; Godfrey, David V; Friedman, Cynthia Ross

    2015-02-09

    Lodgepole pine dwarf mistletoe (DM), Arceuthobium americanum, is a parasitic flowering plant and forest pathogen in North America. Seed dispersal in DM occurs by explosive discharge. Notably, slight warming of ripe DM fruit in the laboratory can trigger explosions. Previously, we showed that alternative oxidase, a protein involved in endogenous heat production (thermogenesis) in plants, is present in DM fruit. These observations have led us to investigate if thermogenesis induces discharge. Here, infrared thermographs reveal that ripe DM fruits display an anomalous increase in surface temperature by an average of 2.1±0.8 °C over an average time of 103±29 s (n=9, 95% confidence interval) before dehiscence. Furthermore, both non-isothermal and isothermal modulated differential scanning calorimetry consistently show an exothermic event (~1 J g(-1)) in the non-reversible heat flow just prior to discharge. These results support thermogenesis-triggered seed discharge, never before observed in any plant.

  14. Thermogenesis-triggered seed dispersal in dwarf mistletoe

    PubMed Central

    deBruyn, Rolena A.J.; Paetkau, Mark; Ross, Kelly A.; Godfrey, David V.; Friedman, Cynthia Ross

    2015-01-01

    Lodgepole pine dwarf mistletoe (DM), Arceuthobium americanum, is a parasitic flowering plant and forest pathogen in North America. Seed dispersal in DM occurs by explosive discharge. Notably, slight warming of ripe DM fruit in the laboratory can trigger explosions. Previously, we showed that alternative oxidase, a protein involved in endogenous heat production (thermogenesis) in plants, is present in DM fruit. These observations have led us to investigate if thermogenesis induces discharge. Here, infrared thermographs reveal that ripe DM fruits display an anomalous increase in surface temperature by an average of 2.1±0.8 °C over an average time of 103±29 s (n=9, 95% confidence interval) before dehiscence. Furthermore, both non-isothermal and isothermal modulated differential scanning calorimetry consistently show an exothermic event (~1 J g−1) in the non-reversible heat flow just prior to discharge. These results support thermogenesis-triggered seed discharge, never before observed in any plant. PMID:25662062

  15. Bottom-up effects of nutrient availability on flower production, pollinator visitation, and seed output in a high-Andean shrub.

    PubMed

    Muñoz, Alejandro A; Celedon-Neghme, Constanza; Cavieres, Lohengrin A; Arroyo, Mary T K

    2005-03-01

    Soil nutrient availability directly enhances vegetative growth, flowering, and fruiting in alpine ecosystems. However, the impacts of nutrient addition on pollinator visitation, which could affect seed output indirectly, are unknown. In a nutrient addition experiment, we tested the hypothesis that seed output in the insect-pollinated, self-incompatible shrub, Chuquiraga oppositifolia (Asteraceae) of the Andes of central Chile, is enhanced by soil nitrogen (N) availability. We aimed to monitor total shrub floral display, size of flower heads (capitula), pollinator visitation patterns, and seed output during three growing seasons on control and N addition shrubs. N addition did not augment floral display, size of capitula, pollinator visitation, or seed output during the first growing season. Seed mass and viability were 25-40% lower in fertilised shrubs. During the second growing season only 33% of the N addition shrubs flowered compared to 71% of controls, and a significant (50%) enhancement in vegetative growth occurred in fertilised shrubs. During the third growing season, floral display in N addition shrubs was more than double that of controls, received more than twice the number of insect pollinator visits, and seed output was three- to four-fold higher compared to controls. A significant (50%) enhancement in vegetative growth again occurred in N addition shrubs. Results of this study strongly suggest that soil N availability produces strong positive bottom-up effects on the reproductive output of the alpine shrub C. oppositifolia. Despite taking considerably longer to be manifest in comparison to the previously reported top-down indirect negative effects of lizard predators in the same study system, our results suggest that both bottom-up and top-down forces are important in controlling the reproductive output of an alpine shrub.

  16. Seed and vegetative production of shrubs and growth of understory conifer regeneration

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wender, B.; Harrington, C.; Tappeiner, J.C.

    2004-01-01

    We observed flower and fruit production for nine understory shrub species in western Washington and Oregon and examined the relationships between shrub reproductive output and plant size, plant age, site factors, and overstory density to determine the factors that control flowering or fruiting in understory shrubs. In Washington, 50 or more shrubs or microplots (for rhizomatous species) were sampled for each of eight species. The variables examined were more useful for explaining abundance of flowers or fruit on shrubs than they were for explaining the probability that a shrub would produce flowers or fruit. Plant size was consistently the most useful predictor of flower/fruit abundance in all species; plant age was also a good predictor of abundance and was strongly correlated with plant size. Site variables (e.g., slope) and overstory competition variables (e.g., presence/absence of a canopy gap) also helped explain flower/fruit abundance for some species. At two Oregon sites, the responses of five species to four levels of thinning were observed for 2-4 yr (15 shrubs or microplots per treatment per year). Thinning increased the probability and abundance of flowering/fruiting for two species, had no effect on one species, and responses for two other species were positive but inconsistent between sites or from year to year. We believe reducing overstory density or creating canopy gaps may be useful tools for enhancing shrub size and vigor, thus, increasing the probability and abundance of fruiting in some understory shrub species.

  17. Negative impacts of a vertebrate predator on insect pollinator visitation and seed output in Chuquiraga oppositifolia, a high Andean shrub.

    PubMed

    Muñoz, Alejandro A; Arroyo, Mary T K

    2004-01-01

    Studies on plant-pollinator interactions have largely neglected the potential negative effects of the predators of pollinators on seed output, even though anti-predatory behaviour of pollinators may affect visitation patterns, pollen transfer, and therefore potentially, plant reproductive output. We tested the hypothesis that the presence of lizards and insectivorous birds, by reducing pollinator visitation, can have significant negative effects on seed output in the insect-pollinated, genetically self-incompatible lower alpine Andean shrub, Chuquiraga oppositifolia (Asteraceae). The lower alpine belt supports a high density of territorial Liolaemus (Tropiduridae) lizards and low shrubs interspersed among rocks of varying sizes, the latter inhabited by lizards and commonly used by flycatchers Muscisaxicola (Tyrannidae) as perching sites. In a 2x2 factorial predator-exclusion experiment, visitation rates of the most frequent pollinators of C. oppositifolia (the satyrid butterfly Cosmosatyrus chilensis and the syrphid fly Scaeva melanostoma), the duration of pollinator visits, and seed output, were 2-4 times greater when lizards were excluded, while birds had no effect. In a natural experiment, visits by S. melanostoma were 9 times shorter, and pollinator visitation rates of C. chilensis and S. melanostoma, and C. oppositifolia seed output were 2-3 times lower on shrubs growing adjacent to lizard-occupied rocks compared to those growing distant from rocks. Our results, verified for additional Andean sites, suggest that lizard predators can alter the behaviour of pollinators and elicit strong top-down indirect negative effects on seed output. Such effects may be especially important in high alpine plant communities, where pollinator activity can be low and erratic, and pollen limitation has been reported.

  18. Impacts of winter icing events on the growth, phenology and physiology of sub-arctic dwarf shrubs.

    PubMed

    Preece, Catherine; Callaghan, Terry V; Phoenix, Gareth K

    2012-12-01

    The Arctic is experiencing the greatest climate change in winter, including increases in freeze-thaw cycles that can result in ice encasement of vegetation. Ice encasement can expose plants to hypoxia and greater temperature extremes, but currently the impacts of icing on plants in the field remain little understood. With this in mind, a unique field manipulation experiment was established in heathland in northern Sweden with ice encasement simulated in early March 2008, 2009 and 2010 until natural thaw each spring. In the following summers we assessed the impacts on flowering, bud phenology, shoot growth and mortality and leaf damage (measured by chlorophyll fluorescence and electrolyte leakage) of the three dominant dwarf shrub species Empetrum nigrum, Vaccinium vitis-idaea (both evergreen) and Vaccinium myrtillus (deciduous). Two consecutive winters of icing decreased V. vitis-idaea flowering by 57%, while flowering of V. myrtillus and E. nigrum remained unaffected. Vaccinium myrtillus showed earlier budburst but shoot growth for all species was unchanged. Shoot mortality of V. myrtillus and V. vitis-idaea increased after the first year (by 70 and 165%, respectively) and again for V. myrtillus following the third year (by 67%), while E. nigrum shoot mortality remained unaffected, as were chlorophyll fluorescence and electrolyte leakage in all species. Overall, the sub-arctic heathland was relatively tolerant to icing, but the considerable shoot mortality of V. myrtillus contrasting with the general tolerance of E. nigrum suggests plant community structure in the longer term could change if winters continue to see a greater frequency of icing events.

  19. Vegetation shift from deciduous to evergreen dwarf shrubs in response to selective herbivory offsets carbon losses: evidence from 19 years of warming and simulated herbivory in the subarctic tundra.

    PubMed

    Ylänne, Henni; Stark, Sari; Tolvanen, Anne

    2015-10-01

    Selective herbivory of palatable plant species provides a competitive advantage for unpalatable plant species, which often have slow growth rates and produce slowly decomposable litter. We hypothesized that through a shift in the vegetation community from palatable, deciduous dwarf shrubs to unpalatable, evergreen dwarf shrubs, selective herbivory may counteract the increased shrub abundance that is otherwise found in tundra ecosystems, in turn interacting with the responses of ecosystem carbon (C) stocks and CO2 balance to climatic warming. We tested this hypothesis in a 19-year field experiment with factorial treatments of warming and simulated herbivory on the dominant deciduous dwarf shrub Vaccinium myrtillus. Warming was associated with a significantly increased vegetation abundance, with the strongest effect on deciduous dwarf shrubs, resulting in greater rates of both gross ecosystem production (GEP) and ecosystem respiration (ER) as well as increased C stocks. Simulated herbivory increased the abundance of evergreen dwarf shrubs, most importantly Empetrum nigrum ssp. hermaphroditum, which led to a recent shift in the dominant vegetation from deciduous to evergreen dwarf shrubs. Simulated herbivory caused no effect on GEP and ER or the total ecosystem C stocks, indicating that the vegetation shift counteracted the herbivore-induced C loss from the system. A larger proportion of the total ecosystem C stock was found aboveground, rather than belowground, in plots treated with simulated herbivory. We conclude that by providing a competitive advantage to unpalatable plant species with slow growth rates and long life spans, selective herbivory may promote aboveground C stocks in a warming tundra ecosystem and, through this mechanism, counteract C losses that result from plant biomass consumption.

  20. A novel system for in situ determination of heat tolerance of plants: first results on alpine dwarf shrubs

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Heat stress and heat damage to plants gain globally increasing importance for crop production and plant survival in endangered habitats. Therefore the knowledge of heat tolerance of plants is of great interest. As many heat tolerance measurement procedures require detachment of plants and protocols expose samples to various heat temperatures in darkness, the ecological relevance of such results may be doubted. To overcome these constraints we designed a novel field compatible Heat Tolerance Testing System (HTTS) that opens the opportunity to induce controlled heat stress on plants in situ under full natural solar irradiation. Subsequently, heat tolerance can be evaluated by a variety of standard viability assays like the electrolyte leakage test, chlorophyll fluorescence measurements and visual assessment methods. Furthermore, recuperation can be studied under natural environmental conditions which is impossible when detached plant material is used. First results obtained on three alpine dwarf - shrubs are presented. Results When heat tolerance of Vaccinium gaultherioides Bigelow was tested with the HTTS in situ, the visual assessment of leaves showed 50% heat injury (LT50) at 48.3°C, while on detached leaves where heat exposure took place in small heat chambers this already happened at 45.8°C. Natural solar irradiation being applied during heat exposure in the HTTS had significantly protective effects: In Loiseleuria procumbens L. (Desv.), if heat exposure (in situ) took place in darkness, leaf heat tolerance was 50.6°C. In contrast, when heat exposure was conducted under full natural solar irradiation heat tolerance was increased to 53.1°C. In Rhododendron ferrugineum L. heat tolerance of leaves was 42.5°C if the exposure took place ex situ and in darkness, while it was significantly increased to 45.8°C when this happened in situ under natural solar irradiation. Conclusions The results obtained with the HTTS tested in the field indicate a

  1. The Formation of the Patterns of Desert Shrub Communities on the Western Ordos Plateau, China: The Roles of Seed Dispersal and Sand Burial

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yange; Yang, Xiaohui; Shi, Zhongjie

    2013-01-01

    The western Ordos Plateau is a key area of shrub diversity and a National Nature Reserve of endangered shrub species in north-west China. Desert expansion is becoming the most important threat to these endangered species. However, little is known about the effects of sand burial on the dynamics of the shrub community. This study aims to investigate how the shrubs as a community and as different individual shrubs respond to the disturbances caused by the desert expansion. The approach used by this study is to separate the seed-dispersal strategy from the sand-burial forces that are involved in structuring the shrub communities at different disturbance stages. Four communities for different disturbance stages were surveyed by using 50×50 m plots. The individual shrubs were classified into coloniser and successor groups at the seed-dispersal stage and strong and weak sand-burial tolerance groups at the sand-expansion stage. We employed spatial point pattern analysis with null models for each community to examine the seed-dispersal strategy and sand-burial forces affecting community distribution patterns. At the seed-dispersal stage, the interactions between the colonisers and the successors showed significant positive correlation at a scale of 0–1 m and significant negative correlation at a scale of 2 m; significant negative correlations between the groups with strong and weak sand-burial tolerance in the early stage of sand expansion at scales of 3–6 m, and significant positive correlation in the later stage of sand expansion at a scale of 13 m, were found. Seed-dispersal strategy is a reasonable mechanism to explain the shrub community pattern formation in the earlier stages, whereas sand burial is the primary reason for the disappearance of shrubs with weak sand-burial tolerance, this irreversible disturbance causes homogenisation of the community structure and produces aging populations of shrub species. This has an important influence on the succession

  2. The influence of spruce on acidity and nutrient content in soils of Northern Taiga dwarf shrub-green moss spruce forests

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Orlova, M. A.; Lukina, N. V.; Smirnov, V. E.; Artemkina, N. A.

    2016-11-01

    Presently, among the works considering the influence of forest trees on soil properties, the idea that spruce ( Picea abies) promotes the acidification of soils predominates. The aim of this work is to assess the effects of spruce trees of different ages and Kraft classes on the acidity and content of available nutrient compounds in the soils under boreal dwarf shrub-green moss spruce forests by the example of forest soils in the Kola Peninsula. The soils are typical iron-illuvial podzols (Albic Rustic Podzols (Arenic)). Three probable ways of developing soils under spruce forests with the moss-dwarf shrub ground cover are considered. The soils under windfall-soil complexes of flat mesodepressions present the initial status. The acidity of organic soil horizons from the initial stage of mesodepression overgrowth to the formation of adult trees changed nonlinearly: the soil acidity reached its maximum under the 30-40-year-old trees and decreased under the trees older than 100 years. The contents of nitrogen and available nutrients increased. The acidity of the mineral soil horizons under the trees at the ages of 110-135 and 190-220 years was comparable, but higher than that under the 30-40-year-old trees. The differences in the strength and trends of the trees' effect on the soils are explained by the age of spruce trees and their belonging to different Kraft classes.

  3. Two decades of demography reveals that seed and seedling transitions limit population persistence in a translocated shrub

    PubMed Central

    Gross, C. L.; Mackay, D.

    2014-01-01

    Background and Aims Olearia flocktoniae is an endangered shrub that was passively translocated from its natural ecosystem, where it has since gone extinct. This study aimed to determine sensitivities vital to populations persisting in human-created areas. Methods Population colonization, longevity and extinction were investigated over 20 years using 133 populations. Seed-bank longevity was determined from germination trials of seeds exhumed from extinct and extant sites via a 10-year glasshouse trial and by in situ sowing experiments. From 27 populations, 98 cohorts were followed and matrix models of transitions from seeds to adults were used to evaluate the intrinsic rate of population growth against disturbance histories. Ten populations (38 cohorts) with different disturbance histories were used to evaluate sensitivities in vital rates. Key Results Most populations had few individuals (∼30) and were transient (<5 years above ground). The intrinsic population growth rate was rarely >1 and all but two populations were extinct at year 20. Seeds were short-lived in situ. Although >1000 seeds per plant were produced annually in most populations, sensitivity analysis showed that the transition to the seed bank and the transition from the seed bank to seedlings are key vulnerabilities in the life-cycle. Conclusions Seedling establishment is promoted by recent disturbance. Increasing the number of disturbance events in populations, even severe disturbances that almost extirpate populations, significantly increases longer-term population persistence. Only populations that were disturbed annually survived the full 20 years of the study. The results show that translocated populations of O. flocktoniae will fail to persist without active management. PMID:24844983

  4. Wet-season Dormancy Release in Seed Banks of a Tropical Leguminous Shrub is Determined by Wet Heat

    PubMed Central

    VAN KLINKEN, RIEKS D.; FLACK, LLOYD K.; PETTIT, WILLIAM

    2006-01-01

    • Background and Aims Hard-seeded (physical) dormancy is common among plants, yet mechanisms for dormancy release are poorly understood, especially in the tropics. The following questions are asked: (a) whether dormancy release in seed banks of the tropical shrub Parkinsonia aculeata (Caesalpiniaceae) is determined by wet heat (incubation under wet, warm to hot, conditions); and (b) whether its effect is modified by microclimate. • Methods A seed burial trial was conducted in the wet–dry tropics (northern Australia) to compare dormancy release across different habitats (open, artificial cover, ground cover and canopy cover), burial depths (0, 3 and 20 cm) and burial durations (2, 6 and 14 weeks). Results were compared with predictions using a laboratory-derived relationship between wet heat and dormancy release, and microclimate data collected during the trial. • Key Results Wet heat (defined as the soil temperature above which seeds were exposed to field capacity or higher for a cumulative total of 24 h) was 43·6 °C in the 0 cm open treatment, and decreased with increasing shade and depth to 29·5 °C at 20 cm under canopy cover. The dormancy release model showed that wet heat was a good predictor of the proportion of seeds remaining dormant. Furthermore, dormancy release was particularly sensitive to wet heat across the temperature range encountered across treatments. This resulted in a 16-fold difference in dormancy levels between open (<5 % of seeds still dormant) and covered (82 %) microhabitats. • Conclusions These results demonstrate that wet heat is the principal dormancy release mechanism for P. aculeata when conditions are hot and wet. They also highlight the potential importance of microclimate in driving the population dynamics of such species. PMID:16891334

  5. Effects of seed bank disturbance on the fine-scale genetic structure of populations of the rare shrub Grevillea macleayana.

    PubMed

    England, P R; Whelan, R J; Ayre, D J

    2003-11-01

    Dispersal in most plants is mediated by the movement of seeds and pollen, which move genes across the landscape differently. Grevillea macleayana is a rare, fire-dependent Australian shrub with large seeds lacking adaptations for dispersal; yet it produces inflorescences adapted to pollination by highly mobile vertebrates (eg birds). Interpreting fine-scale genetic structure in the light of these two processes is confounded by the recent imposition of anthropogenic disturbances with potentially contrasting genetic consequences: (1) the unusual foraging behaviour of exotic honeybees and 2. widespread disturbance of the soil-stored seedbank by road building and quarrying. To test for evidence of fine-scale genetic structure within G. macleayana populations and to test the prediction that such structure might be masked by disturbance of the seed bank, we sampled two sites in undisturbed habitat and compared their genetic structure with two sites that had been strongly affected by road building using a test for spatial autocorrelation of genotypes. High selfing levels inferred from genotypes at all four sites implies that pollen dispersal is limited. Consistent with this, we observed substantial spatial clustering of genes at 10 m or less in the two undisturbed populations and argue that this reflects the predicted effects of both high selfing levels and limited seed dispersal. In contrast, at the two sites disturbed by road building, spatial autocorrelation was weak. This suggests there has been mixing of the seed bank, counteracting the naturally low dispersal and elevated selfing due to honeybees. Pollination between near neighbours with reduced relatedness potentially has fitness consequences for G. macleayana in disturbed sites.

  6. Consumers limit the abundance and dynamics of a perennial shrub with a seed bank

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kauffman, M.J.; Maron, J.L.

    2006-01-01

    For nearly 30 years, ecologists have argued that predators of seeds and seedlings seldom have population-level effects on plants with persistent seed banks and density-dependent seedling survival. We parameterized stage-based population models that incorporated density dependence and seed dormancy with data from a 5.5-year experiment that quantified how granivorous mice and herbivorous voles influence bush lupine (Lupinus arboreus) demography. We asked how seed dormancy and density-dependent seedling survival mediate the impacts of these consumers in dune and grassland habitats. In dune habitat, mice reduced analytical ?? (the intrinsic rate of population growth) by 39%, the equilibrium number of above-ground plants by 90%, and the seed bank by 98%; voles had minimal effects. In adjacent grasslands, mice had minimal effects, but seedling herbivory by voles reduced analytical ?? by 15% and reduced both the equilibrium number of aboveground plants and dormant seeds by 63%. A bootstrap analysis demonstrated that these consumer effects were robust to parameter uncertainty. Our results demonstrate that the quantitative strengths of seed dormancy and density-dependent seedling survival-not their mere existence-critically mediate consumer effects. This study suggests that plant population dynamics and distribution may be more strongly influenced by consumers of seeds and seedlings than is currently recognized. ?? 2006 by The University of Chicago.

  7. Long-term experimental warming, shading and nutrient addition affect the concentration of phenolic compounds in arctic-alpine deciduous and evergreen dwarf shrubs.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Anja H; Jonasson, Sven; Michelsen, Anders; Julkunen-Tiitto, Riitta

    2006-02-01

    Environmental changes are likely to alter the chemical composition of plant tissues, including content and concentrations of secondary compounds, and thereby affect the food sources of herbivores. After 10 years of experimental increase of temperature, nutrient levels and light attenuation in a sub-arctic, alpine ecosystem, we investigated the effects on carbon based secondary compounds (CBSC) and nitrogen in one dominant deciduous dwarf shrub, Salix herbacea x polaris and two dominant evergreen dwarf shrubs, Cassiope tetragona and Vaccinium vitis-idaea throughout one growing season. The main aims were to compare the seasonal course and treatment effects on CBSC among the species, life forms and leaf cohorts and to examine whether the responses in different CBSC were consistent across compounds. The changes in leaf chemistry both during the season and in response to the treatments were higher in S. herbacea x polaris than in the corresponding current year's leaf cohort of the evergreen C. tetragona. The changes were also much higher than in the 1-year-old leaves of the two evergreens probably due to differences in dilution and turnover of CBSC in growing and mature leaves paired with different rates of allocation. Most low molecular weight phenolics in the current year's leaves decreased in all treatments. Condensed tannins and the tannin-to-N ratio, however, either increased or decreased, and the strength and even direction of the responses varied among the species and leaf cohorts, supporting views of influential factors additional to resource-based or developmental controls, as e.g. species specific or genetic controls of CBSC. The results indicate that there is no common response to environmental changes across species and substances. However, the pronounced treatment responses imply that the quality of the herbivore forage is likely to be strongly affected in a changing arctic environment, although both the direction and strength of the responses will be

  8. Low Rate of Between-Population Seed Dispersal Restricts Genetic Connectivity and Metapopulation Dynamics in a Clonal Shrub

    PubMed Central

    Merwin, Laura; He, Tianhua; Lamont, Byron B.; Enright, Neal J.; Krauss, Siegfried L.

    2012-01-01

    Clonal species normally have low seed production, low recruitment rates and long lifespans, and it is expected that the rates of long-distance dispersal (LDD) of seeds will be low as well. Banksia candolleana is a clonal shrub in Mediterranean-type, fire-prone sclerophyll shrublands of southwestern Australia, whose reproductive biology and population dynamics contrast with those of co-occurring nonclonal congeneric species, all of which are restricted to a mosaic of sand dunes set within a matrix of inhospitable swales. Using microsatellite markers, we genotyped 499 plants in all 15 populations of B. candolleana within a 12-km2 area, assessed population genetic differentiation, and quantified the effective rate of interpopulation seed dispersal through genetic assignment of individuals to populations. We measured life history, reproductive and demographic attributes, and compared these with two co-occurring Banksia species, a non-clonal resprouter and a nonsprouter. B. candolleana has much higher levels of population genetic differentiation, and one-third the rate of interpopulation seed migration, as the other two species (2.2% vs 5.5−6.8% of genotyped plants inferred to be immigrants), though distances reached by LDD are comparable (0.3−2.3 km). The low rate of interpopulation dispersal was supported by an analysis of the age structure of three populations that suggests a mean interdune migration rate of <800 m in 200 years, and 60% of suitable dunes remain uninhabited. Thus, B. candolleana has poor properties for promoting long-distance dispersal. It is unclear if these are idiosyncratic to this species or whether such properties are to be expected of clonal species in general where LDD is less critical for species survival. PMID:23209839

  9. Dwarf

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Alfalfa dwarf occurs rarely in alfalfa fields. Dwarf has been identified only in California, where it is found at a low frequency. Plants with symptoms of dwarf were reported in the 1950s in Mississippi, Georgia, and Rhode Island, but experimental confirmation of the disease in those States was no...

  10. Effect of cold stratification treatments on germination of drought tolerant shrubs seeds.

    PubMed

    Olmez, Zafer; Temel, Fatih; Gokturk, Askin; Yahyaoglu, Zeki

    2007-04-01

    This study was carried out to determine effects of different durations (20, 40, 60 days and control) of cold stratification treatments on seed germination and to overcome dormancy in seeds of twelve different drought tolerant plants. The species used in this study were Arbutus andrachne L., Cistus creticus L., Colutea armena Bois. Huet., Cotinus coggygria Scop., Cotoneaster numullaria Fisch. and Mey, Elaeagnus angustifolia L., Jasminum fruticans L., Paliurus spina-christii Mill., Punica granatum L., Pyracantha coccinea Roem., Rhus coriaria L., and Ziziphus jujuba Mill. The seeds were sown in polyethylene pots under greenhouse and on seedbeds under open field conditions. Statistical design was a randomized complete block design with three replications. Germinated seeds were counted and observed periodically for 90 days after sowing to determine germination percentages (GP) and germination rates (GR). While the highest GP were determined according to duration of cold stratification under greenhouse conditions for each species were 44.2% for 60 days, 2.5% for 20 days, 85.6% for 60 days, 13.5% for 20 and 60 days, 64.3% for 20 days, 11.2% for 60 days, 8.2% for 20 days and 14.1% for 20 days for Cotinus coggygria, Cotoneaster numullaria, Jasminum fruticans, Paliurus spina-christii, Pyracantha coccinea, Punica granatum, Rhus coriaria and Ziziphus jujuba respectively The highest GP were 16.5% forArbutus andrachne and 91.3% for Colutea armena for 20 days cold stratified seeds and sown under open field conditions. Furthermore, the highest GP were obtained from seeds of Cistus creticus (27.5%) and Elaeagnus angustifolia (56.2%) in control sowing.

  11. Differential effects of two explosive compounds on seed germination and seedling morphology of a woody shrub, Morella cerifera.

    PubMed

    Via, Stephen M; Zinnert, Julie C; Young, Donald R

    2015-01-01

    Soils contaminated with explosive compounds occur on a global scale. Research demolition explosive (RDX) (hexahydro-1,3,5-trinitro-1,3,5-triazine) and trinitrotoluene (TNT) (2-methyl-1,3,5-trinitrobenzene) are the most common explosive compounds in the environment. These compounds, by variably impacting plant health, can affect species establishment in contaminated areas. Our objective was to quantify comparative effects of RDX and TNT on a woody shrub, Morella cerifera, commonly found on bombing ranges along the Atlantic Coast of the United States. Two life stages of M. cerifera, Seeds and juvenile plants, were exposed to soil amended with concentrations of RDX and TNT representative of field levels; RDX up to 1,500 ppm and TNT up to 900 ppm. Percent germination was recorded for 3 weeks; morphological metrics of necrotic, reduced, and curled leaves, in addition to shoot length and number measured at the end of the experiment (8 weeks) for juvenile plants. All concentrations of RDX inhibited seed germination while TNT did not have an effect at any concentration. As contaminant concentration increased, significant increases in seedling morphological damage occurred in the presence of RDX, whereas TNT did not affect seedling morphology at any concentration. Overall the plants were more sensitive to the presence of RDX. Species specific responses to explosive compounds in the soil have the potential to act as a physiological filter, altering plant recruitment and establishment. This filtering of species may have a number of large scale impacts including: altering species composition and ecological succession.

  12. Ericaceous dwarf shrubs affect ectomycorrhizal fungal community of the invasive Pinus strobus and native Pinus sylvestris in a pot experiment.

    PubMed

    Kohout, Petr; Sýkorová, Zuzana; Bahram, Mohammad; Hadincová, Věroslava; Albrechtová, Jana; Tedersoo, Leho; Vohník, Martin

    2011-07-01

    This study aimed to elucidate the relationship between ericaceous understorey shrubs and the diversity and abundance of ectomycorrhizal fungi (EcMF) associated with the invasive Pinus strobus and native Pinus sylvestris. Seedlings of both pines were grown in mesocosms and subjected to three treatments simulating different forest microhabitats: (a) grown in isolation and grown with (b) Vaccinium myrtillus or (c) Vaccinium vitis-idaea. Ericaceous plants did not act as a species pool of pine mycobionts and inhibited the ability of the potentially shared species Meliniomyces bicolor to form ectomycorrhizae. Similarly, Ericaceae significantly reduced the formation of Thelephora terrestris ectomycorrhizae in P. sylvestris. EcMF species composition in the mesocosms was strongly affected by both the host species and the presence of an ericaceous neighbour. When grown in isolation, P. strobus root tips were predominantly colonised by Wilcoxina mikolae, whereas those of P. sylvestris were more commonly colonised by Suillus and Rhizopogon spp. Interestingly, these differences were less evident (Suillus + Rhizopogon spp.) or absent (W. mikolae) when the pines were grown with Ericaceae. P. strobus exclusively associated with Rhizopogon salebrosus s.l., suggesting the presence of host specificity at the intrageneric level. Ericaceous plants had a positive effect on colonisation of P. strobus root tips by R. salebrosus s.l. This study demonstrates that the interaction of selective factors such as host species and presence of ericaceous plants may affect the realised niche of the ectomycorrhizal fungi.

  13. Fruit Size Determines the Role of Three Scatter-Hoarding Rodents as Dispersers or Seed Predators of a Fleshy-Fruited Atacama Desert Shrub

    PubMed Central

    Loayza, Andrea P.; Squeo, Francisco A.

    2016-01-01

    Scatter-hoarding rodents can act as both predators and dispersers for many large-seeded plants because they cache seeds for future use, but occasionally forget them in sites with high survival and establishment probabilities. The most important fruit or seed trait influencing rodent foraging behavior is seed size; rodents prefer large seeds because they have higher nutritional content, but this preference can be counterbalanced by the higher costs of handling larger seeds. We designed a cafeteria experiment to assess whether fruit and seed size of Myrcianthes coquimbensis, an endangered desert shrub, influence the decision-making process during foraging by three species of scatter-hoarding rodents differing in body size: Abrothrix olivaceus, Phyllotis darwini and Octodon degus. We found that the size of fruits and seeds influenced foraging behavior in the three rodent species; the probability of a fruit being harvested and hoarded was higher for larger fruits than for smaller ones. Patterns of fruit size preference were not affected by rodent size; all species were able to hoard fruits within the entire range of sizes offered. Finally, fruit and seed size had no effect on the probability of seed predation, rodents typically ate only the fleshy pulp of the fruits offered and discarded whole, intact seeds. In conclusion, our results reveal that larger M. coquimbensis fruits have higher probabilities of being harvested, and ultimately of its seeds being hoarded and dispersed by scatter-hoarding rodents. As this plant has no other dispersers, rodents play an important role in its recruitment dynamics. PMID:27861550

  14. The Response of the Alpine Dwarf Shrub Salix herbacea to Altered Snowmelt Timing: Lessons from a Multi-Site Transplant Experiment

    PubMed Central

    Cortés, Andrés J.; Bossdorf, Oliver; Hoch, Guenter; Lexer, Christian; Wipf, Sonja; Karrenberg, Sophie; van Kleunen, Mark; Rixen, Christian

    2015-01-01

    Climate change is altering spring snowmelt patterns in alpine and arctic ecosystems, and these changes may alter plant phenology, growth and reproduction. To predict how alpine plants respond to shifts in snowmelt timing, we need to understand trait plasticity, its effects on growth and reproduction, and the degree to which plants experience a home-site advantage. We tested how the common, long-lived dwarf shrub Salix herbacea responded to changing spring snowmelt time by reciprocally transplanting turfs of S. herbacea between early-exposure ridge and late-exposure snowbed microhabitats. After the transplant, we monitored phenological, morphological and fitness traits, as well as leaf damage, during two growing seasons. Salix herbacea leafed out earlier, but had a longer development time and produced smaller leaves on ridges relative to snowbeds. Longer phenological development times and smaller leaves were associated with reduced sexual reproduction on ridges. On snowbeds, larger leaves and intermediate development times were associated with increased clonal reproduction. Clonal and sexual reproduction showed no response to altered snowmelt time. We found no home-site advantage in terms of sexual and clonal reproduction. Leaf damage probability depended on snowmelt and thus exposure period, but had no short-term effect on fitness traits. We conclude that the studied populations of S. herbacea can respond to shifts in snowmelt by plastic changes in phenology and leaf size, while maintaining levels of clonal and sexual reproduction. The lack of a home-site advantage suggests that S. herbacea may not be adapted to different microhabitats. The studied populations are thus unlikely to react to climate change by rapid adaptation, but their responses will also not be constrained by small-scale local adaptation. In the short term, snowbed plants may persist due to high stem densities. However, in the long term, reduction in leaf size and flowering, a longer phenological

  15. Hydrated mucilage reduces post-dispersal seed removal of a sand desert shrub by ants in a semiarid ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Yang, Xuejun; Baskin, Carol C; Baskin, Jerry M; Gao, Ruiru; Yang, Fan; Wei, Lingling; Li, Leilei; He, Hongju; Huang, Zhenying

    2013-12-01

    Post-dispersal seed removal by animals can lead to extensive seed loss and thus is an important factor in structuring plant communities. However, we know much less about post-dispersal seed predation than about other forms of herbivory. Mucilage plays many ecological roles in adaptation of plants to diverse environments; nevertheless, until now the role of mucilage in ant-mediated seed movement remains largely hypothetical. We studied the role of mucilage in seed removal of Artemisia sphaerocephala by ants in Mu Us Sandland in Inner Mongolia, China. Messor aciculatus was the most active seed predator of Artemisia sphaerocephala. Time to first ant collecting (T 1st) of wet intact seeds was longest and significantly different from that for dry intact seeds, wet demucilaged seeds, and dry demucilaged seeds; number of seeds removed to ant nests was lowest for wet intact seeds. After they were collected by ants, 5 % of wet intact seeds were dropped during transport. Our results indicate that seed mucilage of Artemisia sphaerocephala may play a significant role in post-dispersal seed removal by (1) making seeds less attractive to ants, thus resulting in a delay of collection time; (2) forming a strong bond to soil particles, making it difficult for ants to remove seeds; and (3) making seeds more likely to be dropped during transport, thereby allowing them to escape from predation even after collection by ants. This study demonstrates the importance of mucilage in reducing seed removal by ants and thus in anchoring seeds of desert plants in the vicinity of mother plants.

  16. Ice barriers promote supercooling and prevent frost injury in reproductive buds, flowers and fruits of alpine dwarf shrubs throughout the summer☆

    PubMed Central

    Kuprian, Edith; Briceño, Verónica F.; Wagner, Johanna; Neuner, Gilbert

    2014-01-01

    Over-wintering reproductive buds of many woody plants survive frost by supercooling. The bud tissues are isolated from acropetally advancing ice by the presence of ice barriers that restrict ice growth. Plants living in alpine environments also face the risk of ice formation in summer months. Little knowledge exists, how reproductive structures of woody alpine plants are protected from frost injury during episodic summer frosts. In order to address this question, frost resistance of three common dwarf shrubs, Calluna vulgaris, Empetrum hermaphroditum and Loiseleuria procumbens was measured and ice formation and propagation were monitored in twigs bearing reproductive shoots during various stages of reproductive development (bud, anthesis, and fruit) throughout the alpine summer. Results indicated that, in the investigated species, ice barriers were present at all reproductive stages, isolating the reproductive shoots from ice advancing from the subtending vegetative shoot. Additionally, in the reproductive stems ice nucleating agents that are active at warm, sub-zero temperatures, were absent. The ice barriers were 100% effective, with the exception of L. procumbens, where in 13% of the total observations, the ice barrier failed. The ice barriers were localized at the base of the pedicel, at the anatomical junction of the vegetative and reproductive shoot. There, structural aspects of the tissue impede or prevent ice from advancing from the frozen stem into the pedicel of the reproductive shoot. Under the experimental conditions used in this study, ice nucleation initially occurred in the stem of the vegetative shoot at species-specific mean temperatures in the range of −4.7 to −5.8 °C. Reproductive shoots, however, remained supercooled and ice free down to a range of −7.2 to −18.2 °C or even below −22 °C, the lowest temperature applied in the study. This level of supercooling is sufficient to prevent freezing of reproductive structures at the

  17. Ice barriers promote supercooling and prevent frost injury in reproductive buds, flowers and fruits of alpine dwarf shrubs throughout the summer.

    PubMed

    Kuprian, Edith; Briceño, Verónica F; Wagner, Johanna; Neuner, Gilbert

    2014-10-01

    Over-wintering reproductive buds of many woody plants survive frost by supercooling. The bud tissues are isolated from acropetally advancing ice by the presence of ice barriers that restrict ice growth. Plants living in alpine environments also face the risk of ice formation in summer months. Little knowledge exists, how reproductive structures of woody alpine plants are protected from frost injury during episodic summer frosts. In order to address this question, frost resistance of three common dwarf shrubs, Calluna vulgaris, Empetrum hermaphroditum and Loiseleuria procumbens was measured and ice formation and propagation were monitored in twigs bearing reproductive shoots during various stages of reproductive development (bud, anthesis, and fruit) throughout the alpine summer. Results indicated that, in the investigated species, ice barriers were present at all reproductive stages, isolating the reproductive shoots from ice advancing from the subtending vegetative shoot. Additionally, in the reproductive stems ice nucleating agents that are active at warm, sub-zero temperatures, were absent. The ice barriers were 100% effective, with the exception of L. procumbens, where in 13% of the total observations, the ice barrier failed. The ice barriers were localized at the base of the pedicel, at the anatomical junction of the vegetative and reproductive shoot. There, structural aspects of the tissue impede or prevent ice from advancing from the frozen stem into the pedicel of the reproductive shoot. Under the experimental conditions used in this study, ice nucleation initially occurred in the stem of the vegetative shoot at species-specific mean temperatures in the range of -4.7 to -5.8 °C. Reproductive shoots, however, remained supercooled and ice free down to a range of -7.2 to -18.2 °C or even below -22 °C, the lowest temperature applied in the study. This level of supercooling is sufficient to prevent freezing of reproductive structures at the lowest air

  18. Genetic structure and seed-mediated dispersal rates of an endangered shrub in a fragmented landscape: a case study for Juniperus communis in northwestern Europe

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Population extinction risk in a fragmented landscape is related to the differential ability of the species to spread its genes across the landscape. The impact of landscape fragmentation on plant population dynamics will therefore vary across different spatial scales. We quantified successful seed-mediated dispersal of the dioecious shrub Juniperus communis in a fragmented landscape across northwestern Europe by using amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) markers. Furthermore we investigated the genetic diversity and structure on two spatial scales: across northwestern Europe and across Flanders (northern Belgium). We also studied whether seed viability and populations size were correlated with genetic diversity. Results Unexpectedly, estimated seed-mediated dispersal rates were quite high and ranged between 3% and 14%. No population differentiation and no spatial genetic structure were detected on the local, Flemish scale. A significant low to moderate genetic differentiation between populations was detected at the regional, northwest European scale (PhiPT = 0.10). In general, geographically nearby populations were also genetically related. High levels of within-population genetic diversity were detected but no correlation was found between any genetic diversity parameter and population size or seed viability. Conclusions In northwestern Europe, landscape fragmentation has lead to a weak isolation-by-distance pattern but not to genetic impoverishment of common juniper. Substantial rates of successful migration by seed-mediated gene flow indicate a high dispersal ability which could enable Juniperus communis to naturally colonize suitable habitats. However, it is not clear whether the observed levels of migration will suffice to counterbalance the effects of genetic drift in small populations on the long run. PMID:21859457

  19. Maize dwarf mosaic in sweet corn contributes to weed growth and seed production

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Maize dwarf mosaic (MDM) stunts corn growth, delays development, and is the most prevalent viral disease of sweet corn. Although weeds evade control in most sweet corn fields, the extent to which MDM influences the crop’s weed suppressive ability is unknown. Field studies were conducted over a three...

  20. A Statistical Analysis of SEEDS and Other High-contrast Exoplanet Surveys: Massive Planets or Low-mass Brown Dwarfs?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandt, Timothy D.; McElwain, Michael W.; Turner, Edwin L.; Mede, Kyle; Spiegel, David S.; Kuzuhara, Masayuki; Schlieder, Joshua E.; Wisniewski, John P.; Abe, L.; Biller, B.; Brandner, W.; Carson, J.; Currie, T.; Egner, S.; Feldt, M.; Golota, T.; Goto, M.; Grady, C. A.; Guyon, O.; Hashimoto, J.; Hayano, Y.; Hayashi, M.; Hayashi, S.; Henning, T.; Hodapp, K. W.; Inutsuka, S.; Ishii, M.; Iye, M.; Janson, M.; Kandori, R.; Knapp, G. R.; Kudo, T.; Kusakabe, N.; Kwon, J.; Matsuo, T.; Miyama, S.; Morino, J.-I.; Moro-Martín, A.; Nishimura, T.; Pyo, T.-S.; Serabyn, E.; Suto, H.; Suzuki, R.; Takami, M.; Takato, N.; Terada, H.; Thalmann, C.; Tomono, D.; Watanabe, M.; Yamada, T.; Takami, H.; Usuda, T.; Tamura, M.

    2014-10-01

    We conduct a statistical analysis of a combined sample of direct imaging data, totalling nearly 250 stars. The stars cover a wide range of ages and spectral types, and include five detections (κ And b, two ~60 M J brown dwarf companions in the Pleiades, PZ Tel B, and CD-35 2722B). For some analyses we add a currently unpublished set of SEEDS observations, including the detections GJ 504b and GJ 758B. We conduct a uniform, Bayesian analysis of all stellar ages using both membership in a kinematic moving group and activity/rotation age indicators. We then present a new statistical method for computing the likelihood of a substellar distribution function. By performing most of the integrals analytically, we achieve an enormous speedup over brute-force Monte Carlo. We use this method to place upper limits on the maximum semimajor axis of the distribution function derived from radial-velocity planets, finding model-dependent values of ~30-100 AU. Finally, we model the entire substellar sample, from massive brown dwarfs to a theoretically motivated cutoff at ~5 M J, with a single power-law distribution. We find that p(M, a)vpropM -0.65 ± 0.60 a -0.85 ± 0.39 (1σ errors) provides an adequate fit to our data, with 1.0%-3.1% (68% confidence) of stars hosting 5-70 M J companions between 10 and 100 AU. This suggests that many of the directly imaged exoplanets known, including most (if not all) of the low-mass companions in our sample, formed by fragmentation in a cloud or disk, and represent the low-mass tail of the brown dwarfs. Based on data collected at Subaru Telescope, which is operated by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan.

  1. A statistical analysis of seeds and other high-contrast exoplanet surveys: massive planets or low-mass brown dwarfs?

    SciTech Connect

    Brandt, Timothy D.; Spiegel, David S.; McElwain, Michael W.; Grady, C. A.; Turner, Edwin L.; Mede, Kyle; Kuzuhara, Masayuki; Schlieder, Joshua E.; Brandner, W.; Feldt, M.; Wisniewski, John P.; Abe, L.; Biller, B.; Carson, J.; Currie, T.; Egner, S.; Golota, T.; Guyon, O.; Goto, M.; Hashimoto, J.; and others

    2014-10-20

    We conduct a statistical analysis of a combined sample of direct imaging data, totalling nearly 250 stars. The stars cover a wide range of ages and spectral types, and include five detections (κ And b, two ∼60 M {sub J} brown dwarf companions in the Pleiades, PZ Tel B, and CD–35 2722B). For some analyses we add a currently unpublished set of SEEDS observations, including the detections GJ 504b and GJ 758B. We conduct a uniform, Bayesian analysis of all stellar ages using both membership in a kinematic moving group and activity/rotation age indicators. We then present a new statistical method for computing the likelihood of a substellar distribution function. By performing most of the integrals analytically, we achieve an enormous speedup over brute-force Monte Carlo. We use this method to place upper limits on the maximum semimajor axis of the distribution function derived from radial-velocity planets, finding model-dependent values of ∼30-100 AU. Finally, we model the entire substellar sample, from massive brown dwarfs to a theoretically motivated cutoff at ∼5 M {sub J}, with a single power-law distribution. We find that p(M, a)∝M {sup –0.65} {sup ±} {sup 0.60} a {sup –0.85} {sup ±} {sup 0.39} (1σ errors) provides an adequate fit to our data, with 1.0%-3.1% (68% confidence) of stars hosting 5-70 M {sub J} companions between 10 and 100 AU. This suggests that many of the directly imaged exoplanets known, including most (if not all) of the low-mass companions in our sample, formed by fragmentation in a cloud or disk, and represent the low-mass tail of the brown dwarfs.

  2. Shrub encroachment is linked to extirpation of an apex predator.

    PubMed

    Gordon, Christopher E; Eldridge, David J; Ripple, William J; Crowther, Mathew S; Moore, Ben D; Letnic, Mike

    2017-01-01

    The abundance of shrubs has increased throughout Earth's arid lands. This 'shrub encroachment' has been linked to livestock grazing, fire-suppression and elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations facilitating shrub recruitment. Apex predators initiate trophic cascades which can influence the abundance of many species across multiple trophic levels within ecosystems. Extirpation of apex predators is linked inextricably to pastoralism, but has not been considered as a factor contributing to shrub encroachment. Here, we ask if trophic cascades triggered by the extirpation of Australia's largest terrestrial predator, the dingo (Canis dingo), could be a driver of shrub encroachment in the Strzelecki Desert, Australia. We use aerial photographs spanning a 51-year period to compare shrub cover between areas where dingoes are historically rare and common. We then quantify contemporary patterns of shrub, shrub seedling and mammal abundances, and use structural equation modelling to compare competing trophic cascade hypotheses to explain how dingoes could influence shrub recruitment. Finally, we track the fate of seedlings of an encroaching shrub, hopbush (Dodonaea viscosa angustissima), during a period optimal for seedling recruitment, and quantify removal rates of hopbush seeds by rodents from enriched seed patches. Shrub cover was 26-48% greater in areas where dingoes were rare than common. Our structural equation modelling supported the hypothesis that dingo removal facilitates shrub encroachment by triggering a four level trophic cascade. According to this model, increased mesopredator abundance in the absence of dingoes results in suppressed abundance of consumers of shrub seeds and seedlings, rodents and rabbits respectively. In turn, suppressed abundances of rodents and rabbits in the absence of dingoes relaxed a recruitment bottleneck for shrubs. The results of our SEM were supported by results showing that rates of hopbush seedling survival and seed removal were 1

  3. Yield and seed oil content response of dwarf, rapid-cycling Brassica to nitrogen treatments, planting density, and carbon dioxide enrichment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frick, J.; Nielsen, S. S.; Mitchell, C. A.

    1994-01-01

    Effects of N level (15 to 30 mM), time of N increase (14 to 28 days after planting), and planting density (1163 to 2093 plants/m2) were determined for crop yield responses of dwarf, rapid-cycling brassica (Brassica napus L., CrGC 5-2, Genome: ACaacc). Crops were grown in solid-matrix hydroponic systems and under controlled-environment conditions, including nonsupplemented (ambient) or elevated CO2 concentrations (998 +/- 12 micromoles mol-1). The highest seed yield rate obtained (4.4 g m-2 day-1) occurred with the lowest N level (15 mM) applied at the latest treatment time (day 28). In all trials, CO2 enrichment reduced seed yield rate and harvest index by delaying the onset of flowering and senescence and stimulating vegetative shoot growth. The highest shoot biomass accumulation rate (55.5 g m-2 day-1) occurred with the highest N level (30 mM) applied at the earliest time (day 14). Seed oil content was not significantly affected by CO2 enrichment. Maximum seed oil content (30% to 34%, dry weight basis) was obtained using the lowest N level (15 mM) initiated at the latest treatment time (day 28). In general, an increase in seed oil content was accompanied by a decrease in seed protein. Seed carbohydrate, moisture, and ash contents did not vary significantly in response to experimental treatments. Effects of N level and time of N increase were consistently significant for most crop responses. Planting density was significant only under elevated CO2 conditions.

  4. The SEEDS High-Contrast Imaging Survey: Exoplanet and Brown Dwarf Survey for Nearby Young Stars Dated with Gyrochronology and Activity Age Indicators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuzuhara, Masayuki; Tamura, Motohide; Helminiak, Kris; Mede, Kyle; Brandt, Timothy; Janson, Markus; Kandori, Ryo; Kudo, Tomoyuki; Kusakabe, Nobuhiko; Hashimoto, Jun

    2015-12-01

    The SEEDS campaign has successfully discovered and characterized exoplanets, brown dwarfs, and circumstellar disks since it began in 2009, via the direct imaging technique. The survey has targeted nearby young stars, as well as stars associated to star-forming regions, the Pleiades open cluster, moving groups, and debris disks. We selected the nearby young stars that have been dated with age indicators based on stellar rotation periods (i.e., gyrochronology) and chromoshperic/coronal activities. Of these, nearly 40 were observed, with ages mainly between 100 and 1000 Myr and distances less than 40 pc. Our observations typically attain the contrast of ~6 x 10-6 at 1'' and better than ~1 x 10-6 beyond 2'', enabling us to detect a planetary-mass companion even around such old stars. Indeed, the SEEDS team reported the discovery that the nearby Sun-like star GJ 504 hosts a Jovian companion GJ 504b, which has a mass of 3-8.5 Jupiter masses that is inferred according to the hot-start cooling models and our estimated system age of 100-510 Myr. The remaining observations out of the selected ~40 stars have resulted in no detection of additional planets or brown dwarf companions. Meanwhile, we have newly imaged a low-mass stellar companion orbiting the G-type star HIP 10321, for which the presence of companion was previously announced via radial velocity technique. The astrometry and radial velocity measurements are simultaneously analyzed to determine the orbit, providing constraints on the dynamical mass of both objects and stellar evolution models. Here we summarize our direct imaging observations for the nearby young stars dated with gyrochrolorogy and activity age indicators. Furthermore, we report the analysis for the HIP 10321 system with the imaged low-mass companion.

  5. Shrub control by browsing: Targeting adult plants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    da Silveira Pontes, Laíse; Magda, Danièle; Gleizes, Benoît; Agreil, Cyril

    2016-01-01

    Reconciling the well known benefits of shrubs for forage with environmental goals, whilst preventing their dominance, is a major challenge in rangeland management. Browsing may be an economical solution for shrubby rangelands as herbivore browsing has been shown to control juvenile shrub growth. Less convincing results have been obtained for adult plants, and long-term experiments are required to investigate the cumulative effects on adult plants. We therefore assessed the impact of different levels of browsing intensity on key demographic parameters for a major dominant shrub species (broom, Cytisus scoparius), focusing on adult plants. We assigned individual broom plants to one of three age classes: 3-5 years (young adults); 5-7 years (adults); and 7-9 years (mature adults). These plants were then left untouched or had 50% or 90% of their total edible stem biomass removed in simulated low-intensity and high-intensity browsing treatments, respectively. Morphological, survival and fecundity data were collected over a period of four years. Browsing affected the morphology of individual plants, promoting changes in subsequent regrowth, and decreasing seed production. The heavily browsed plants were 17% shorter, 32% narrower, and their twigs were 28% shorter. Light browsing seemed to control the growth of young adult plants more effectively than that of older plants. Reproductive output was considerably lower than for control plants after light browsing, and almost 100% lower after heavy browsing. High-intensity browsing had a major effect on survival causing high levels of plant mortality. We conclude that suitable browsing practices could be used to modify adult shrub demography in the management of shrub dominance and forage value.

  6. Willow Shrub Expansion Following Tundra Fires in Arctic Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Racine, C.

    2010-12-01

    Climate warming in the Arctic is predicted to result in the expansion of woody shrubs and increased frequency and size of tundra fires. How will fire influence this shrub expansion? Over a period of 32 years, following a 1977 tundra fire in the central Seward Peninsula, we sampled seven times the post-fire vegetation at eight permanently marked sites on a long (2 Km) hillslope (Nimrod Hill). We had previously sampled vegetation here in 1973 prior to the fire. By 2001, 24 years post-fire conspicuous willow shrubs (mostly Salix pulchra) had increased in numbers, size and cover over the entire slope in moist tussock-shrub tundra, well-drained heath, and wet meadow. Prior to fire, willow on this slope was largely restricted to small drainages or watertracks. Willows here have originated from both seed and vegetative resprouting - the latter mostly in moist tussock-shrub tundra from willows resprouting within one to three years post-fire. With fire-induced removal of vascular plant competition and Spagnum moss cover and litter in tussock-shrub tundra, both seedling and resprouting willows have grown rapidly to overtop tussocks by 30-40 cm. Similar rapid post-fire resprouting of willows has been observed in tussock-shrub tundra after the 2007 Anaktuvuk River tundra fire and after the 1977 tundra fires in the Noatak River basin. On Nimrod Hill the most striking willow expansion has occurred on the severely burned and well-drained backslope where willow establishment from seed 5-10 years after fire has resulted in up to 40% cover of rapidly growing willows of both upright and spreading growth form. At several sites along the slope there is evidence of continuing willow expansion from seedlings 24 to 32 years post-fire, when we might expect the effects of fire on seedbeds would have ceased. We conclude that tundra fire may promote shrub expansion in the Arctic.

  7. Contrasting radiation and soil heat fluxes in Arctic shrub and wet sedge tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Juszak, Inge; Eugster, Werner; Heijmans, Monique M. P. D.; Schaepman-Strub, Gabriela

    2016-07-01

    Vegetation changes, such as shrub encroachment and wetland expansion, have been observed in many Arctic tundra regions. These changes feed back to permafrost and climate. Permafrost can be protected by soil shading through vegetation as it reduces the amount of solar energy available for thawing. Regional climate can be affected by a reduction in surface albedo as more energy is available for atmospheric and soil heating. Here, we compared the shortwave radiation budget of two common Arctic tundra vegetation types dominated by dwarf shrubs (Betula nana) and wet sedges (Eriophorum angustifolium) in North-East Siberia. We measured time series of the shortwave and longwave radiation budget above the canopy and transmitted radiation below the canopy. Additionally, we quantified soil temperature and heat flux as well as active layer thickness. The mean growing season albedo of dwarf shrubs was 0.15 ± 0.01, for sedges it was higher (0.17 ± 0.02). Dwarf shrub transmittance was 0.36 ± 0.07 on average, and sedge transmittance was 0.28 ± 0.08. The standing dead leaves contributed strongly to the soil shading of wet sedges. Despite a lower albedo and less soil shading, the soil below dwarf shrubs conducted less heat resulting in a 17 cm shallower active layer as compared to sedges. This result was supported by additional, spatially distributed measurements of both vegetation types. Clouds were a major influencing factor for albedo and transmittance, particularly in sedge vegetation. Cloud cover reduced the albedo by 0.01 in dwarf shrubs and by 0.03 in sedges, while transmittance was increased by 0.08 and 0.10 in dwarf shrubs and sedges, respectively. Our results suggest that the observed deeper active layer below wet sedges is not primarily a result of the summer canopy radiation budget. Soil properties, such as soil albedo, moisture, and thermal conductivity, may be more influential, at least in our comparison between dwarf shrub vegetation on relatively dry patches and

  8. Drivers of tall shrub proliferation adjacent to the Dempster Highway, Northwest Territories, Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cameron, Emily A.; Lantz, Trevor C.

    2016-04-01

    Arctic ecosystems are undergoing rapid changes as a result of climate warming and more frequent disturbances. Disturbances can have particularly large effects on high-latitude ecosystems when ecosystem structure and function is controlled by strong feedbacks between soil conditions, vegetation, and ground thermal regime. In this study we investigated the impact of road construction and maintenance on vegetation structure and biomass along the Dempster Highway where it crosses the Peel Plateau in the Northwest Territories. To explore drivers of tall shrub proliferation and to quantify shrub proliferation in this region of continuous permafrost, greyscale air photos (1975) and Quickbird satellite imagery (2008) were used to map landcover change within two 0.6 km2 belts next to the road and two 0.6 km2 belts 500 m away from the road. Maps showing areas where: 1) tall shrubs expanded, and 2) dwarf shrub tundra resisted invasion were then used to select field sites where a suite of biophysical variables were measured. Rapid tall shrub proliferation and greater biomass adjacent to the road indicate that disturbance can facilitate vegetation change in tundra environments. Our field data also suggests that increased shrub proliferation adjacent to the road was caused by greater soil moisture. Tall shrub proliferation adjacent to the road occurred at lower elevation sites characterized by wetter soils with thicker organic layers. Areas that resisted tall shrub encroachment were located at higher elevations and had drier soils with thin organic layers. Our observations also support previous work illustrating that tall shrub expansion next to the highway promotes strong positive feedbacks to ongoing shrub growth and proliferation.

  9. Mechanisms of shrub encroachment into Northern Chihuahuan Desert grasslands and impacts of climate change investigated using a cellular automata model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caracciolo, Domenico; Istanbulluoglu, Erkan; Noto, Leonardo Valerio; Collins, Scott L.

    2016-05-01

    Arid and semiarid grasslands of southwestern North America have changed dramatically over the last 150 years as a result of woody plant encroachment. Overgrazing, reduced fire frequency, and climate change are known drivers of woody plant encroachment into grasslands. In this study, relatively simple algorithms for encroachment factors (i.e., grazing, grassland fires, and seed dispersal by grazers) are proposed and implemented in the ecohydrological Cellular-Automata Tree Grass Shrub Simulator (CATGraSS). CATGraSS is used in a 7.3 km2 rectangular domain located in central New Mexico along a zone of grassland to shrubland transition, where shrub encroachment is currently active. CATGraSS is calibrated and used to investigate the relative contributions of grazing, fire frequency, seed dispersal by herbivores and climate change on shrub abundance over a 150-year period of historical shrub encroachment. The impact of future climate change is examined using a model output that realistically represents current vegetation cover as initial condition, in a series of stochastic CATGraSS future climate simulations. Model simulations are found to be highly sensitive to the initial distribution of shrub cover. Encroachment factors more actively lead to shrub propagation within the domain when the model starts with randomly distributed individual shrubs. However, when shrubs are naturally evolved into clusters, the model response to encroachment factors is muted unless the effect of seed dispersal by herbivores is amplified. The relative contribution of different drivers on modeled shrub encroachment varied based on the initial shrub cover condition used in the model. When historical weather data is used, CATGraSS predicted loss of shrub and grass cover during the 1950 s drought. While future climate change is found to amplify shrub encroachment (∼13% more shrub cover by 2100), grazing remains the dominant factor promoting shrub encroachment. When we modeled future climate

  10. Dwarf novae

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ladous, Constanze

    1993-01-01

    Dwarf novae are defined on grounds of their semi-regular brightness variations of some two to five magnitudes on time scales of typically 10 to 100 days. Historically several different classification schemes have been used. Today, dwarf novae are divided into three sub-classes: the U Geminorum stars, the SU Ursae Majoris stars, and the Z Camelopardalis stars. Outbursts of dwarf novae occur at semi-periodic intervals of time, typically every 10 to 100 days; amplitudes range from typically 2 to 5 mag. Within certain limits values are characteristic for each object. Relations between the outburst amplitude, or the total energy released during outburst, and the recurrence time have been found, as well as relations between the orbital period and the outburst decay time, the absolute magnitude during outburst maximum, and the widths of long and short outbursts, respectively. Some dwarf novae are known to have suspended their normal outburst activity altogether for a while. They later resumed it without having undergone any observable changes. The optical colors of dwarf novae all are quite similar during outburst, considerably bluer than during the quiescent state. During the outburst cycle, characteristic loops in the two color diagram are performed. At a time resolution on the order of minutes, strictly periodic photometric changes due to orbital motion become visible in the light curves of dwarf novae. These are characteristic for each system. Remarkably little is known about orbital variations during the course of an outburst. On time-scales of minutes and seconds, further more or less periodic types of variability are seen in dwarf novae. Appreciable flux is emitted by dwarf novae at all wavelengths from the X-rays to the longest IR wavelengths, and in some cases even in the radio. Most dwarf novae exhibit strong emission line spectra in the optical and UV during quiescence, although some have only very weak emissions in the optical and/or weak absorptions at UV

  11. Coping with shrub secondary metabolites by ruminants

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Rangelands throughout the world contain varying but often substantial proportions of shrubs. Shrubs are generally heavily chemically defended, and herbivores must either contend with their plant secondary metabolites (PSM) or avoid a significant component of the available forage. Browsing ruminants ...

  12. Will greater shrub abundance greatly impact tundra surface-atmosphere exchanges of energy and carbon?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Humphreys, E.; Lafleur, P.

    2015-12-01

    Increasing deciduous shrub abundance, productivity, and range in the Arctic comes with the potential for both negative and positive feedbacks to the climate system. This study presents six seasons of eddy covariance measurements of carbon dioxide (CO2) and latent and sensible heat fluxes along a shrub gradient in Canada's Low Arctic. Three flux tower sites with 17, 45, and 64% dwarf birch cover were established within a few kilometers of each other to investigate differences in microclimate, energy and carbon exchanges. As expected, there was greater winter snow depth but less summer soil thaw with greater shrub cover. However, snowmelt timing and speed were usually similar among sites. Despite a reduction in albedo in spring and greater leaf area through summer, latent heat fluxes were consistently lower with greater shrub cover. Offset by small differences in sensible heat fluxes, total seasonal atmospheric heating (combined sensible and latent heat fluxes) was similar among sites. We anticipated greater net uptake of CO2 through the growing season with greater shrub cover. However, that was only the case in some years. There was much more week-to-week and year-to-year variability in CO2 fluxes at the shrubbiest site suggesting photosynthesis and respiration processes were more sensitive to weather variations. Shrub abundance does impact tundra surface-atmosphere exchanges of energy and carbon but these observations also highlight the complexity involved in predicting the net climate feedback effect of current and future Arctic vegetation change.

  13. Canopy storage capacity of xerophytic shrubs in Northwestern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xin-ping; Zhang, Ya-feng; Hu, Rui; Pan, Yan-xia; Berndtsson, Ronny

    2012-08-01

    SummaryThe capacity of shrub canopy water storage is a key factor in controlling the rainfall interception. Thus, it affects a variety of hydrological processes in water-limited arid desert ecosystems. Vast areas of revegetated desert ecosystems in Northwestern China are occupied by shrub and dwarf shrub communities. Yet, data are still scarce regarding their rainwater storage capacity. In this study, simulated rainfall tests were conducted in controlled conditions for three dominant xerophytic shrub types in the arid Tengger Desert. Eight rainfall intensities varying from 1.15 to 11.53 mm h-1 were used to determine the canopy water storage capacity. The simulated rainfall intensities were selected according to the long-term rainfall records in the study area. The results indicate that canopy storage capacity (expressed in water storage per leaf area, canopy projection area, biomass, and volume of shrub respectively) increased exponentially with increase in rainfall intensity for the selected shrubs. Linear relationships were found between canopy storage capacity and leaf area (LA) or leaf area index (LAI), although there was a striking difference in correlation between storage capacity and LA or LAI of Artemisia ordosica compared to Caragana korshinskii and Hedysarum scoparium. This is a result of differences in biometric characteristics, especially canopy morphology between the shrub species. Pearson correlation coefficient indicated that LA and dry biomass are better predictors as compared to canopy projection area and volume of samples for precise estimation of canopy water storage capacity. In terms of unit leaf area, mean storage capacity was 0.39 mm (range of 0.24-0.53 mm), 0.43 mm (range of 0.28-0.60 mm), and 0.61 mm (range of 0.29-0.89 mm) for C. korshinskii, H. scoparium, and A. ordosica, respectively. Correspondingly, divided per unit dry biomass, mean storage capacity was 0.51 g g-1 (range of 0.30-0.70 g g-1), 0.41 g g-1 (range of 0.26-0.57 g g-1), and

  14. Tall shrub and tree expansion in Siberian tundra ecotones since the 1960s.

    PubMed

    Frost, Gerald V; Epstein, Howard E

    2014-04-01

    Circumpolar expansion of tall shrubs and trees into Arctic tundra is widely thought to be occurring as a result of recent climate warming, but little quantitative evidence exists for northern Siberia, which encompasses the world's largest forest-tundra ecotonal belt. We quantified changes in tall shrub and tree canopy cover in 11, widely distributed Siberian ecotonal landscapes by comparing very high-resolution photography from the Cold War-era 'Gambit' and 'Corona' satellite surveillance systems (1965-1969) with modern imagery. We also analyzed within-landscape patterns of vegetation change to evaluate the susceptibility of different landscape components to tall shrub and tree increase. The total cover of tall shrubs and trees increased in nine of 11 ecotones. In northwest Siberia, alder (Alnus) shrubland cover increased 5.3-25.9% in five ecotones. In Taymyr and Yakutia, larch (Larix) cover increased 3.0-6.7% within three ecotones, but declined 16.8% at a fourth ecotone due to thaw of ice-rich permafrost. In Chukotka, the total cover of alder and dwarf pine (Pinus) increased 6.1% within one ecotone and was little changed at a second ecotone. Within most landscapes, shrub and tree increase was linked to specific geomorphic settings, especially those with active disturbance regimes such as permafrost patterned-ground, floodplains, and colluvial hillslopes. Mean summer temperatures increased at most ecotones since the mid-1960s, but rates of shrub and tree canopy cover expansion were not strongly correlated with temperature trends and were better correlated with mean annual precipitation. We conclude that shrub and tree cover is increasing in tundra ecotones across most of northern Siberia, but rates of increase vary widely regionally and at the landscape scale. Our results indicate that extensive changes can occur within decades in moist, shrub-dominated ecotones, as in northwest Siberia, while changes are likely to occur much more slowly in the highly continental

  15. Ecosystem response to removal of exotic riparian shrubs and a transition to upland vegetation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reynolds, Lindsay V.; Cooper, David J.

    2011-01-01

    Understanding plant community change over time is essential for managing important ecosystems such as riparian areas. This study analyzed historic vegetation using soil seed banks and the effects of riparian shrub removal treatments and channel incision on ecosystem and plant community dynamics in Canyon de Chelly National Monument, Arizona. We focused on how seeds, nutrients, and ground water influence the floristic composition of post-treatment vegetation and addressed three questions: (1) How does pre-treatment soil seed bank composition reflect post-treatment vegetation composition? (2) How does shrub removal affect post-treatment riparian vegetation composition, seed rain inputs, and ground water dynamics? and (3) Is available soil nitrogen increased near dead Russian olive plants following removal and does this influence post-treatment vegetation? We analyzed seed bank composition across the study area, analyzed differences in vegetation, ground water levels, and seed rain between control, cut-stump and whole-plant removal areas, and compared soil nitrogen and vegetation near removed Russian olive to areas lacking Russian olive. The soil seed bank contained more riparian plants, more native and fewer exotic plants than the extant vegetation. Both shrub removal methods decreased exotic plant cover, decreased tamarisk and Russian olive seed inputs, and increased native plant cover after 2 years. Neither method increased ground water levels. Soil near dead Russian olive trees indicated a short-term increase in soil nitrogen following plant removal but did not influence vegetation composition compared to areas without Russian olive. Following tamarisk and Russian olive removal, our study sites were colonized by upland plant species. Many western North American rivers have tamarisk and Russian olive on floodplains abandoned by channel incision, river regulation or both. Our results are widely applicable to sites where drying has occurred and vegetation

  16. A story of the permafrost small-scale collapse at the deciduous shrub patches in the northeast Siberian tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Bingxi; Heijmans, Monique; Sass-Klaassen, Ute; Berendse, Frank

    2014-05-01

    The recent climate change is believed to accelerate the permafrost degradation in the arctic tundra. It also, meanwhile, drove the greening of the arctic (the expansion of the deciduous shrubs). The switch of the vegetation type might largely affect the local permafrost dynamics. Previous research indicated that the cover of deciduous shrubs mitigates the local permafrost degradation. From our observations, the active layer of permafrost at the deciduous shrub patch is normally the thinnest during the growing season. However, at our northeast Siberian tundra research site we also observed the drowning of shrubs due to small-scale permafrost collapse which happened in the shrub patches. This phenomenon is still far from understood. In this study we tried to explore the reasons that triggered these events. We hypothesized that the shrub cover can no longer protect the permafrost if dying of the oldest deciduous shrubs starts. Without sufficient shrub protection, the small-scale collapse of permafrost happens. Thus, we expected that the oldest deciduous shrub (in our study is dwarf birch Betula nana) individuals existed at small-scale permafrost collapse sites and the more younger stems appeared at the margin, compared with those at the center of the patches. The lack of long-term monitoring record increased the difficulties of the study. To achieve this target, a dendrochoronolgical method was implemented in this study, helping us measuring the shrub ages precisely. From the results of the study, we concluded that the dynamics of these patches were more complicated than our original hypotheses. Although there were some evidence supporting our expectation, the other results were against that. The vegetation dynamics of the B. nana patch probably was not the main reason of the local small-scale permafrost collapse. It was further implied that the local permafrost dynamics probably play a vital role on the patch dynamics in turn.

  17. Seed Dispersers, Seed Predators, and Browsers Act Synergistically as Biotic Filters in a Mosaic Landscape

    PubMed Central

    Zamora, Regino; Matías, Luis

    2014-01-01

    In this study, we analize the functional influence of animals on the plants they interact with in a mediterranean mountain. We hypothesise that seed dispersers, seed predators, and browsers can act as biotic filters for plant communities. We analyse the combined effects of mutualistic (seed dispersal) and antagonistic (seed predation, herbivory) animal interactions in a mosaic landscape of Mediterranean mountains, basing our results on observational and experimental field. Most of the dispersed seeds came from tree species, whereas the population of saplings was composed predominantly of zoochorous shrub species. Seed predators preferentially consumed seeds from tree species, whereas seeds from the dominant fleshy-fruited shrubs had a higher probability of escaping these predators. The same pattern was repeated among the different landscape units by browsers, since they browsed selectively and far more intensely on tree-species saplings than on the surrounding shrubs. In synthesis, our work identifies the major biotic processes that appear to be favoring a community dominated by shrubs versus trees because seed dispersers, predators, and herbivores together favored shrub dispersal and establishment versus trees. PMID:25233342

  18. New White Dwarf-Brown Dwarf Binaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Casewell, S. L.; Geier, S.; Lodieu, N.

    2017-03-01

    We present follow-up spectroscopy to 12 candidate white dwarf-brown dwarf binaries. We have confirmed that 8 objects do indeed have a white dwarf primary (7 DA, 1 DB) and two are hot subdwarfs. We have determined the Teff and log g for the white dwarfs and subdwarfs, and when combining these values with a model spectrum and the photometry, we have 3 probable white dwarf-substellar binaries with spectral types between M6 and L6.

  19. Dwarf Galaxies with Active Massive Black Holes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reines, Amy E.; Greene, J. E.; Geha, M. C.

    2014-01-01

    Supermassive black holes (BHs) live at the heart of essentially all massive galaxies with bulges, power AGN, and are thought to be important agents in the evolution of their hosts. However, the birth and growth of the first supermassive BH "seeds" is far from understood. While direct observations of these distant BHs in the infant Universe are unobtainable with current capabilities, massive BHs in present-day dwarf galaxies can place valuable constraints on the masses, formation path, and hosts of supermassive BH seeds. Using optical spectroscopy from the SDSS, we have systematically assembled the largest sample of dwarf galaxies hosting active massive BHs to date. These dwarf galaxies have stellar masses comparable to the Magellanic Clouds and contain some of the least-massive supermassive BHs known.

  20. Recent expansion of erect shrubs in the Low Arctic: evidence from Eastern Nunavik

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tremblay, Benoît; Lévesque, Esther; Boudreau, Stéphane

    2012-09-01

    In order to characterize shrub response near the treeline in Eastern Nunavik (Québec), a region under extensive warming since the 1990s, we compared two series (1964 and 2003) of vertical aerial photos from the vicinity of Kangiqsualujjuaq. Our study revealed a widespread increase in erect woody vegetation cover. During the 40 years spanning the two photo series, erect shrub and tree cover increased markedly on more than half of the land surface available for new colonization or infilling. Within the 7.2 km2 analysed, areas with dense shrub and tree cover (>90%) increased from 34% to 44% whereas areas with low cover (<10%) shrank from 45% to 29%. This increase in cover of trees and shrubs occurred throughout the landscape regardless of altitude, slope angle and exposure, although to varying extents. The main shrub species involved in this increase was Betula glandulosa Michx. (dwarf birch), which was present in 98% and dominant in 85% of the 345 plots. In addition, numerous seedlings and saplings of Larix laricina (Du Roi) K Koch (eastern larch) were found above the treeline (25% of the plots), suggesting that the altitudinal treeline might shift upslope in the near future. Sites that remained devoid of erect woody vegetation in 2003 were either characterized by the absence of a suitable seedbed or by harsh local microclimatic conditions (wind exposure or excessive drainage). Our results indicate dramatic increases in shrub and tree cover at a Low Arctic site in Eastern Nunavik, contributing to a growing number of observations of woody vegetation change from various areas around the North.

  1. Why Be a Shrub? A Basic Model and Hypotheses for the Adaptive Values of a Common Growth Form.

    PubMed

    Götmark, Frank; Götmark, Elin; Jensen, Anna M

    2016-01-01

    Shrubs are multi-stemmed short woody plants, more widespread than trees, important in many ecosystems, neglected in ecology compared to herbs and trees, but currently in focus due to their global expansion. We present a novel model based on scaling relationships and four hypotheses to explain the adaptive significance of shrubs, including a review of the literature with a test of one hypothesis. Our model describes advantages for a small shrub compared to a small tree with the same above-ground woody volume, based on larger cross-sectional stem area, larger area of photosynthetic tissue in bark and stem, larger vascular cambium area, larger epidermis (bark) area, and larger area for sprouting, and faster production of twigs and canopy. These components form our Hypothesis 1 that predicts higher growth rate for a small shrub than a small tree. This prediction was supported by available relevant empirical studies (14 publications). Further, a shrub will produce seeds faster than a tree (Hypothesis 2), multiple stems in shrubs insure future survival and growth if one or more stems die (Hypothesis 3), and three structural traits of short shrub stems improve survival compared to tall tree stems (Hypothesis 4)-all hypotheses have some empirical support. Multi-stemmed trees may be distinguished from shrubs by more upright stems, reducing bending moment. Improved understanding of shrubs can clarify their recent expansion on savannas, grasslands, and alpine heaths. More experiments and other empirical studies, followed by more elaborate models, are needed to understand why the shrub growth form is successful in many habitats.

  2. Why Be a Shrub? A Basic Model and Hypotheses for the Adaptive Values of a Common Growth Form

    PubMed Central

    Götmark, Frank; Götmark, Elin; Jensen, Anna M.

    2016-01-01

    Shrubs are multi-stemmed short woody plants, more widespread than trees, important in many ecosystems, neglected in ecology compared to herbs and trees, but currently in focus due to their global expansion. We present a novel model based on scaling relationships and four hypotheses to explain the adaptive significance of shrubs, including a review of the literature with a test of one hypothesis. Our model describes advantages for a small shrub compared to a small tree with the same above-ground woody volume, based on larger cross-sectional stem area, larger area of photosynthetic tissue in bark and stem, larger vascular cambium area, larger epidermis (bark) area, and larger area for sprouting, and faster production of twigs and canopy. These components form our Hypothesis 1 that predicts higher growth rate for a small shrub than a small tree. This prediction was supported by available relevant empirical studies (14 publications). Further, a shrub will produce seeds faster than a tree (Hypothesis 2), multiple stems in shrubs insure future survival and growth if one or more stems die (Hypothesis 3), and three structural traits of short shrub stems improve survival compared to tall tree stems (Hypothesis 4)—all hypotheses have some empirical support. Multi-stemmed trees may be distinguished from shrubs by more upright stems, reducing bending moment. Improved understanding of shrubs can clarify their recent expansion on savannas, grasslands, and alpine heaths. More experiments and other empirical studies, followed by more elaborate models, are needed to understand why the shrub growth form is successful in many habitats. PMID:27507981

  3. Naming Disney's Dwarfs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sidwell, Robert T.

    1980-01-01

    Discusses Disney's version of the folkloric dwarfs in his production of "Snow White" and weighs the Disney rendition of the dwarf figure against the corpus of traits and behaviors pertaining to dwarfs in traditional folklore. Concludes that Disney's dwarfs are "anthropologically true." (HOD)

  4. Mortality of resprouting chaparral shrubs after a fire and during a record drought: physiological mechanisms and demographic consequences.

    PubMed

    Pratt, R Brandon; Jacobsen, Anna L; Ramirez, Aaron R; Helms, Anjel M; Traugh, Courtney A; Tobin, Michael F; Heffner, Marcus S; Davis, Stephen D

    2014-03-01

    We examined postfire regeneration of chaparral shrubs during an intense drought. This study focused on the demography and physiology of shrub species that resprout from a basal lignotuber following fire. We found significant levels of resprout mortality when intense drought occurred in the year following fire during the period of shrub recovery. Three of the seven sampled resprouting species had the greatest or near greatest levels of mortality ever recorded when compared to previous studies. Most shrub mortality occurred during the drought after individuals had resprouted (i.e. individuals survived fire, resprouted and then subsequently died). Physiological measurements of species with high mortality suggested that resprout stems were highly embolized and xylem hydraulic conductivities were close to zero during the peak of the drought. In addition, lignotubers of two of the three species experiencing high mortality were depleted of starch. Population densities of most shrub species declined after the drought compared with their prefire levels, with the exception of one drought tolerant obligate seeding species. Resprouting shrub species may deplete their carbohydrate reserves during the resprouting process, making them particularly vulnerable to drought because of the need to transpire water to acquire the CO2 that is used to supply energy to a large respiring root system. Drought appears to interact with fire by altering postfire shrub recovery and altering species abundances and composition of chaparral communities.

  5. DISPERSAL OF SEEDS AS NEST MATERIAL BY THE CACTUS WREN

    EPA Science Inventory

    Cactus wren (Campylorhynchus brunneicapillus) nests from the southern Chihuahuan Desert contained viable seeds of grasses, forbs, and shrubs. The most common plants used as construction material in these nests were Muhlenbergia porteri, Boerhavia spicata, and the alien grass Era...

  6. FORMATION OF DWARF SPHEROIDAL GALAXIES VIA MERGERS OF DISKY DWARFS

    SciTech Connect

    Kazantzidis, Stelios; Lokas, Ewa L.; Klimentowski, Jaroslaw; Mayer, Lucio; Knebe, Alexander

    2011-10-10

    We perform collisionless N-body simulations to investigate whether binary mergers between rotationally supported dwarfs can lead to the formation of dwarf spheroidal galaxies (dSphs). Our simulation campaign is based on a hybrid approach combining cosmological simulations and controlled numerical experiments. We select merger events from a Constrained Local Universe simulation of the Local Group (LG) and record the properties of the interacting dwarf-sized halos. This information is subsequently used to seed controlled experiments of binary encounters between dwarf galaxies consisting of exponential stellar disks embedded in cosmologically motivated dark matter halos. These simulations are designed to reproduce eight cosmological merger events, with initial masses of the interacting systems in the range {approx}(5-60) x 10{sup 7} M{sub sun}, occurring quite early in the history of the LG, more than 10 Gyr ago. We compute the properties of the merger remnants as a distant observer would and demonstrate that at least three of the simulated encounters produce systems with kinematic and structural properties akin to those of the classic dSphs in the LG. Tracing the history of the remnants in the cosmological simulation to z = 0, we find that two dSph-like objects remain isolated at distances {approx}> 800 kpc from either the Milky Way or M31. These systems constitute plausible counterparts of the remote dSphs Cetus and Tucana which reside in the LG outskirts, far from the tidal influence of the primary galaxies. We conclude that merging of rotationally supported dwarfs represents a viable mechanism for the formation of dSphs in the LG and similar environments.

  7. Modelling the shrub encroachment in a grassland with a Cellular Automata Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caracciolo, D.; Noto, L. V.; Istanbulluoglu, E.

    2014-09-01

    Arid and semi-arid grasslands of southwestern North America have changed dramatically over the last 150 years as a result of shrub encroachment, i.e. the increase in density, cover and biomass of indigenous shrubby plants in grasslands. Numerous studies have documented the expansion of shrublands in the southwestern American grasslands; in particular shrub encroachment has occurred strongly in part of the northern Chihuahuan desert since 1860. This encroachment has been simulated using an ecohydrological Cellular Automata model, CATGraSS. It is a spatially distributed model driven by spatially explicit irradiance and runs on a fine-resolution gridded domain. Plant competition is modelled by keeping track of mortality and establishment of plants; both are calculated probabilistically based on soil moisture stress. For this study CATGraSS has been improved with a stochastic fire module and a grazing function. The model has been implemented in a small area in Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge (SNWR), characterized by two vegetation types (grass savanna and creosote bush shrub), considering as encroachment causes the fire return period increase, the grazing increase, the seed dispersal caused by animals, the role of wind direction and plant type competition. The model is able to reproduce the encroachment that has occurred in SNWR, simulating an increase of the shrub from 2% in 1860 to the current shrub percentage, 42%, and highlighting among the most influential factors the reduced fire frequency and the increased grazing intensity.

  8. Empty seeds are not always bad: simultaneous effect of seed emptiness and masting on animal seed predation.

    PubMed

    Perea, Ramón; Venturas, Martin; Gil, Luis

    2013-01-01

    Seed masting and production of empty seeds have often been considered independently as different strategies to reduce seed predation by animals. Here, we integrate both phenomena within the whole assemblage of seed predators (both pre and post-dispersal) and in two contrasting microsites (open vs. sheltered) to improve our understanding of the factors controlling seed predation in a wind-dispersed tree (Ulmus laevis). In years with larger crop sizes more avian seed predators were attracted with an increase in the proportion of full seeds predated on the ground. However, for abundant crops, the presence of empty seeds decreased the proportion of full seeds predated. Empty seeds remained for a very long period in the tree, making location of full seeds more difficult for pre-dispersal predators and expanding the overall seed drop period at a very low cost (in dry biomass and allocation of C, N and P). Parthenocarpy (non-fertilized seeds) was the main cause of seed emptiness whereas seed abortion was produced in low quantity. These aborted seeds fell prematurely and, thus, could not work as deceptive seeds. A proportion of 50% empty seeds significantly reduced ground seed predation by 26%. However, a high rate of parthenocarpy (beyond 50% empty seeds) did not significantly reduce seed predation in comparison to 50% empty seeds. We also found a high variability and unpredictability in the production of empty seeds, both at tree and population level, making predator deception more effective. Open areas were especially important to facilitate seed survival since rodents (the main post-dispersal predators) consumed seeds mostly under shrub cover. In elm trees parthenocarpy is a common event that might work as an adaptive strategy to reduce seed predation. Masting per se did not apparently reduce the overall proportion of seeds predated in this wind-dispersed tree, but kept great numbers of seeds unconsumed.

  9. Empty Seeds Are Not Always Bad: Simultaneous Effect of Seed Emptiness and Masting on Animal Seed Predation

    PubMed Central

    Perea, Ramón; Venturas, Martin; Gil, Luis

    2013-01-01

    Seed masting and production of empty seeds have often been considered independently as different strategies to reduce seed predation by animals. Here, we integrate both phenomena within the whole assemblage of seed predators (both pre and post-dispersal) and in two contrasting microsites (open vs. sheltered) to improve our understanding of the factors controlling seed predation in a wind-dispersed tree (Ulmus laevis). In years with larger crop sizes more avian seed predators were attracted with an increase in the proportion of full seeds predated on the ground. However, for abundant crops, the presence of empty seeds decreased the proportion of full seeds predated. Empty seeds remained for a very long period in the tree, making location of full seeds more difficult for pre-dispersal predators and expanding the overall seed drop period at a very low cost (in dry biomass and allocation of C, N and P). Parthenocarpy (non-fertilized seeds) was the main cause of seed emptiness whereas seed abortion was produced in low quantity. These aborted seeds fell prematurely and, thus, could not work as deceptive seeds. A proportion of 50% empty seeds significantly reduced ground seed predation by 26%. However, a high rate of parthenocarpy (beyond 50% empty seeds) did not significantly reduce seed predation in comparison to 50% empty seeds. We also found a high variability and unpredictability in the production of empty seeds, both at tree and population level, making predator deception more effective. Open areas were especially important to facilitate seed survival since rodents (the main post-dispersal predators) consumed seeds mostly under shrub cover. In elm trees parthenocarpy is a common event that might work as an adaptive strategy to reduce seed predation. Masting per se did not apparently reduce the overall proportion of seeds predated in this wind-dispersed tree, but kept great numbers of seeds unconsumed. PMID:23776503

  10. Effects of surface characteristics on infiltration patterns in an arid shrub desert

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xin-Ping; Li, Xin-Rong; Xiao, Hong-Lang; Berndtsson, Ronny; Pan, Yan-Xia

    2007-01-01

    Precipitation is often the sole source of water replenishment in arid and semi-arid areas and, thus, plays a pertinent role in sustaining desert ecosystems. Revegetation over 40 years using mainly Artemisia ordosica and Caragana korshinskii at Shapotou Desert Experimental Research Station near Lanzhou, China, has established a dwarf-shrub and microbiotic soil crust cover on the stabilized sand dunes. The redistribution of infiltrated moisture through percolation, root extraction, and evapotranspiration pathways was investigated. Three sets of time-domain reflectometry (TDR) probes were inserted horizontally at 5, 10, 15, 20, 30 and 40 cm depths below the ground surface in a soil pit. The three sets of TDR probes were installed in dwarf-shrub sites of A. ordosica and C. korshinskii community with and without a microbiotic soil crust cover, and an additional set was placed in a bare sand dune area that had neither vegetation nor a microbiotic soil crust present. Volumetric soil moisture content was recorded at hourly intervals and used in the assessment of infiltration for the different surface covers. Infiltration varied greatly, from 7.5 cm to more than 45 cm, depending upon rainfall quantity and soil surface conditions. In the shrub community area without microbiotic soil crust cover, infiltration increased due to preferential flow associated with root tunnels. The microbiotic soil crust cover had a significant negative influence on the infiltration for small rainfall events (10 mm), restricting the infiltration depth to less than 20 cm and increasing soil moisture content just beneath the soil profile of 10 cm, whereas it was not as strong or clear for larger rainfall events (60 mm). For small rainfall events, the wetting front depth for the three kinds of surface cover was as follows: shrub community without microbiotic soil crust > bare area > shrub community with microbiotic soil crust. In contrast, for large rainfall events, infiltration was similar in shrub

  11. Deciduous shrubs for ozone bioindication: Hibiscus syriacus as an example.

    PubMed

    Paoletti, Elena; Ferrara, Anna Maria; Calatayud, Vicent; Cerveró, Júlia; Giannetti, Fabio; Sanz, María José; Manning, William J

    2009-03-01

    Ozone-like visible injury was detected on Hibiscus syriacus plants used as ornamental hedges. Weekly spray of the antiozonant ethylenediurea (EDU, 300ppm) confirmed that the injury was induced by ambient ozone. EDU induced a 75% reduction in visible injury. Injury was more severe on the western than on the eastern exposure of the hedge. This factor of variability should be considered in ozone biomonitoring programmes. Seeds were collected and seedlings were artificially exposed to ozone in filtered vs. not-filtered (+30ppb) Open-Top Chambers. The level of exposure inducing visible injury in the OTC seedlings was lower than that in the ambient-grown hedge. The occurrence of visible injury in the OTC confirmed that the ozone sensitivity was heritable and suggested that symptomatic plants of this deciduous shrub population can be successfully used as ozone bioindicators. EDU is recommended as a simple tool for diagnosing ambient ozone visible injury on field vegetation.

  12. Tree and shrub expansion over the past 34 years at the tree-line near Abisko, Sweden.

    PubMed

    Rundqvist, Sara; Hedenås, Henrik; Sandström, Anneli; Emanuelsson, Urban; Eriksson, Håkan; Jonasson, Christer; Callaghan, Terry V

    2011-09-01

    Shrubs and trees are expected to expand in the sub-Arctic due to global warming. Our study was conducted in Abisko, sub-arctic Sweden. We recorded the change in coverage of shrub and tree species over a 32- to 34-year period, in three 50 x 50 m plots; in the alpine-tree-line ecotone. The cover of shrubs and trees (<3.5 cm diameter at breast height) were estimated during 2009-2010 and compared with historical documentation from 1976 to 1977. Similarly, all tree stems (> or =3.5 cm) were noted and positions determined. There has been a substantial increase of cover of shrubs and trees, particularly dwarf birch (Betula nana), and mountain birch (Betula pubescens ssp. czerepanovii), and an establishment of aspen (Populus tremula). The other species willows (Salix spp.), juniper (Juniperus communis), and rowan (Sorbus aucuparia) revealed inconsistent changes among the plots. Although this study was unable to identify the causes for the change in shrubs and small trees, they are consistent with anticipated changes due to climate change and reduced herbivory.

  13. Significance of brown dwarfs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Black, D. C.

    1986-01-01

    The significance of brown dwarfs for resolving some major problems in astronomy is discussed. The importance of brown dwarfs for models of star formation by fragmentation of molecular clouds and for obtaining independent measurements of the ages of stars in binary systems is addressed. The relationship of brown dwarfs to planets is considered.

  14. Investigating Dwarf Spiral Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weerasooriya, Sachithra; Dunn, Jacqueline M.

    2017-01-01

    Several studies have proposed that dwarf elliptical / spheroidal galaxies form through the transformation of dwarf irregular galaxies. Early and late type dwarfs resemble each other in terms of their observed colors and light distributions (each can often be represented by exponential disks), providing reason to propose an evolutionary link between the two types. The existence of dwarf spirals has been largely debated. However, more and more recent studies are using the designation of dwarf spiral to describe their targets of interest. This project seeks to explore where dwarf spirals fit into the above mentioned evolutionary sequence, if at all. Optical colors will be compared between a sample of dwarf irregular, dwarf elliptical, and dwarf spiral galaxies. The dwarf irregular and dwarf elliptical samples have previously been found to overlap in both optical color and surface brightness profile shape when limiting the samples to their fainter members. A preliminary comparison including the dwarf spiral sample will be presented here, along with a comparison of available ultraviolet and near-infrared data. Initial results indicate a potential evolutionary link that merits further investigation.

  15. Effects of habitat and season on removal and hoarding of seeds of wild apricot (Prunus armeniaca) by small rodents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ji-Qi, Lu; Zhi-Bin, Zhang

    2004-12-01

    The wild apricot (Prunus armeniaca) is widely distributed in the Donglingshan Mountains of Mentougou District of Beijing, China, where its seeds may be an important food resource for rodents. Predation, removal and hoarding of seeds by rodents will inevitably affect the spatio-temporal pattern of seed fate of wild apricot in this area. By marking and releasing tagged seeds of wild apricot, we investigated seeds survival, scatter-hoarding, cache size and seedling establishment, and the preference of micro-habitats used by rodents to store seeds. The results showed that: (1) rodents in this area hoarded food intensively in autumn, as well as in spring and summer. (2) There were significant effects of habitat and season on removal rate of tagged seeds at releasing plots. In both two types of habitats, Low and High shrub, tagged seeds were removed most rapidly by rodents in autumn, at intermediate rates in spring and least rapidly in summer. (3) During three seasons, mean dispersal distance of scatter-hoarded seeds in Low shrub habitat was greater than that in High shrub. Most removed seeds were buried within 21.0 m of the releasing plots. (4) In both two types of habitats, Low and High shrub, rodents tended to carry seeds to US (Under shrub) and SE (Shrub edge) microhabitats for scatter-hoarding or predation. (5) Among the caches made by rodents, most caches contained only one seed, but up to three seeds were observed; caches of 2-3 seeds were common in autumn. (6) By comparing dental marks, we determined that large field mice (Apodemus peninsulae) and David's rock squirrels (Sciurotamias davidianus) contributed to removal and predation of released tagged seeds. However, only the large field mice exerted a pivotal and positive role on the burial of dispersed seeds. (7) Establishment of three seedlings originated from seeds buried by rodents was documented in High shrub habitat.

  16. Modeling the shrub encroachment in the Northern Chihuahuan desert Grasslands using a Cellular Automata model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caracciolo, Domenico; Istanbulluoglu, Erkan; Noto, Leonardo V.

    2014-05-01

    Arid grasslands of southwestern North America have changed dramatically over the last 150 years as a result of the shrub encroachment, i.e. the increase in density and biomass of indigenous shrubby plants in grasslands. Numerous studies have documented the expansion of shrublands in the southwestern America Grasslands; in particular the encroachment of shrubs in american deserts has strongly occurred in the Chihuahuan deserts from 1860. The Sevilleta National Wildlife Refuge (SNWR), located in the northern Chihuahuan desert shows a dramatic encroachment front of creosote bush (i.e., shrub) into native desert grassland. This encroachment has been here simulated using an Ecohydrological Cellular Automata Model, CATGraSS. CATGraSS is a spatially distributed model driven by spatially explicit irradiance and runs on a fine-resolution gridded domain. In the model, each cell can hold a single plant type or can represent bare soil. Plant competition is modeled by keeping track of mortality and establishment of plants, both calculated probabilistically based on soil moisture stress. For this study, the model is improved with a stochastic fire and a grazing function, and its plant establishment algorithm is modified. CATGraSS is implemented in a small area (7.3 km2) in SNWR, characterized by two vegetation types: grass savanna and creosote bush. The causes that have been considered for the encroachment in this case study are: the fire return period increase, the grazing increase, the seed dispersal caused by animals, the role of wind direction and the shrub-grass inhibition effect. The model is able to reproduce the encroachment occurred in the SNWR basin, simulating an increasing of the shrub from 2% in 1860 to 42% (i.e., current shrub percentage) in 2010 highlighting as more influent factors the reduced fire frequency and the increased grazing intensity. For the future management and encroachment control, the reduction of the fire return period and the grazing removal

  17. Shrub canopies influence soil temperatures but not nutrient dynamics: An experimental test of tundra snow–shrub interactions

    PubMed Central

    Myers-Smith, Isla H; Hik, David S

    2013-01-01

    Shrubs are the largest plant life form in tundra ecosystems; therefore, any changes in the abundance of shrubs will feedback to influence biodiversity, ecosystem function, and climate. The snow–shrub hypothesis asserts that shrub canopies trap snow and insulate soils in winter, increasing the rates of nutrient cycling to create a positive feedback to shrub expansion. However, previous work has not been able to separate the abiotic from the biotic influences of shrub canopies. We conducted a 3-year factorial experiment to determine the influences of canopies on soil temperatures and nutrient cycling parameters by removing ∼0.5 m high willow (Salix spp.) and birch (Betula glandulosa) shrubs, creating artificial shrub canopies and comparing these manipulations to nearby open tundra and shrub patches. Soil temperatures were 4–5°C warmer in January, and 2°C cooler in July under shrub cover. Natural shrub plots had 14–33 cm more snow in January than adjacent open tundra plots. Snow cover and soil temperatures were similar in the manipulated plots when compared with the respective unmanipulated treatments, indicating that shrub canopy cover was a dominant factor influencing the soil thermal regime. Conversely, we found no strong evidence of increased soil decomposition, CO2 fluxes, or nitrate or ammonia adsorbtion under artificial shrub canopy treatments when compared with unmanipulated open tundra. Our results suggest that the abiotic influences of shrub canopy cover alone on nutrient dynamics are weaker than previously asserted. PMID:24198933

  18. Shrub canopies influence soil temperatures but not nutrient dynamics: An experimental test of tundra snow-shrub interactions.

    PubMed

    Myers-Smith, Isla H; Hik, David S

    2013-10-01

    Shrubs are the largest plant life form in tundra ecosystems; therefore, any changes in the abundance of shrubs will feedback to influence biodiversity, ecosystem function, and climate. The snow-shrub hypothesis asserts that shrub canopies trap snow and insulate soils in winter, increasing the rates of nutrient cycling to create a positive feedback to shrub expansion. However, previous work has not been able to separate the abiotic from the biotic influences of shrub canopies. We conducted a 3-year factorial experiment to determine the influences of canopies on soil temperatures and nutrient cycling parameters by removing ∼0.5 m high willow (Salix spp.) and birch (Betula glandulosa) shrubs, creating artificial shrub canopies and comparing these manipulations to nearby open tundra and shrub patches. Soil temperatures were 4-5°C warmer in January, and 2°C cooler in July under shrub cover. Natural shrub plots had 14-33 cm more snow in January than adjacent open tundra plots. Snow cover and soil temperatures were similar in the manipulated plots when compared with the respective unmanipulated treatments, indicating that shrub canopy cover was a dominant factor influencing the soil thermal regime. Conversely, we found no strong evidence of increased soil decomposition, CO2 fluxes, or nitrate or ammonia adsorbtion under artificial shrub canopy treatments when compared with unmanipulated open tundra. Our results suggest that the abiotic influences of shrub canopy cover alone on nutrient dynamics are weaker than previously asserted.

  19. Exploring Dwarf Galaxy Evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dunn, Jacqueline M.

    2017-01-01

    Dwarf galaxies are the most numerous galaxies in the universe, yet little is definitively understood about their formation and evolution. An evolutionary link has been proposed between dwarf irregular and dwarf elliptical galaxies by previous studies. The nature and existence of so-called dwarf spiral galaxies is still heavily debated. This project explores the properties of dwarf galaxies spanning a range in morphological type, luminosity, physical size, and surrounding environment (i.e. group / field galaxies). The goal of this project is to determine the range of exhibited properties for each type of dwarf galaxy using available ultraviolet, visible, and near-infrared imaging and spectra. Similarities in visible, broadband colors support the proposed evolutionary link dwarf irregular and dwarf elliptical galaxies when the range of brightness of the samples is constrained to the fainter galaxies. Here, comparisons amongst a sub-sample of 59 dwarf irregulars, 12 dwarf ellipticals, and 29 dwarf spirals will be presented using archival ultraviolet, visible, and near-infrared imaging. The effect of constraining the comparisons to the fainter sample members will be explored, as well as the effect of constraining the comparisons to the brighter sample members.

  20. Why trees and shrubs but rarely trubs?

    PubMed

    Scheffer, Marten; Vergnon, Remi; Cornelissen, J Hans C; Hantson, Stijn; Holmgren, Milena; van Nes, Egbert H; Xu, Chi

    2014-08-01

    An analysis of the maximum height of woody plant species across the globe reveals that an intermediate size is remarkably rare. We speculate that this may be due to intrinsic suboptimality or to ecosystem bistability with open landscapes favouring shrubs, and closed canopies propelling trees to excessive tallness.

  1. SHRUB BATTLE: Understanding the Making of Landscape

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Depigny, Sylvain; Michelin, Yves

    2007-01-01

    Landscape changes in Europe's rural areas seem to generate a more visible impact. This trend raises new questions on rural management and brings about a conflict between farmers' land-use patterns and public expectations, which are often exclusively based on esthetics. The aim of the SHRUB BATTLE board game is to help tutors make future rural…

  2. Variation in semi-arid soil seed banks

    SciTech Connect

    Boudell-Flanary, J.A.; Link, S.O. |

    1995-09-01

    Seeds recovered from soils in the semi-arid shrub-steppe were compared to test for differences between the seed banks found beneath and cryptogamic crust and the crevices in the crust. Seed quantity found within the crevices was 56% higher than that under the cryptogamic crust. Pseudoroegneria spicata, Poa sandbergii, Bromus tectorum, and Artemisia tridentata are the common species found at the research site. Seeds of Bromus tectorum, Erigeron spp., and Poa spp. were found in the crevices of the crust. Seeds of Artemisia tridentata were not found in the seed banks of either the cryptogamic crust or the crevices in the crust. The higher amount of seeds found in the crevices of the cryptogamic crust suggests that the crevices play a significant role in determining the distributional pattern of shrub-steppe vegetation.

  3. Weak Evidence of Regeneration Habitat but Strong Evidence of Regeneration Niche for a Leguminous Shrub

    PubMed Central

    Delerue, Florian; Gonzalez, Maya; Michalet, Richard; Pellerin, Sylvain; Augusto, Laurent

    2015-01-01

    The identification of an ecological niche specific to the regeneration phase has mobilised significant attention. However, the importance of the regeneration niche concept remains unclear. Our main objective was to study the existence of such a regeneration niche for a leguminous shrub, Ulex europaeus. This study was carried out in southwest France in the context of water and nutrient stresses (mainly phosphorus limitation) due to the presence of nutrient-poor sandy soils. We analysed the regeneration of the species from the germination of seeds and emergence of new seedlings until the seedlings reached young shrub size. Our design included a P fertilisation treatment. We also investigated microsite characteristics (micro-topography and vegetation development) as they can interact with meteorological conditions and determine water availability for seeds and seedlings. We found that P availability controlled seedling growth and the time necessary to reach young shrub size. Water availability appeared to impact the species germination and seedlings survival. We also found that P and water availability depended on the interactions between microsite characteristics and climatic variations. Finally we found evidence that P and water availability are important ecological factors shaping the regeneration niche of the species, but we found weak evidence that any microsite would be appropriate for the regeneration of the species in the long term. Future studies regarding regeneration niches need to distinguish more clearly the ecological factors important for regeneration (the regeneration niche per se) and the physical world where the seedlings appear and develop (the regeneration habitat). PMID:26098877

  4. Tolerance of an Expanding Subarctic Shrub, Betula glandulosa, to Simulated Caribou Browsing

    PubMed Central

    Champagne, Emilie; Tremblay, Jean-Pierre; Côté, Steeve D.

    2012-01-01

    Densification of the shrub layer has been reported in many subarctic regions, raising questions about the implication for large herbivores and their resources. Shrubs can tolerate browsing and their level of tolerance could be affected by browsing and soils productivity, eventually modifying resource availability for the caribou. Our objective was to assess the compensatory growth potential of a subarctic shrub, Betula glandulosa Michx., in relation with caribou browsing and nutriment availability for the plants. We used a simulated browsing (0, 25 and 75% of available shoots) and nitrogen-fertilisation (0 and 10 g m−2) experiment to test two main hypotheses linking tolerance to resource availability, the Compensatory Continuum Hypothesis and the Growth Rate Hypothesis as well as the predictions from the Limiting Resource Model. We seek to explicitly integrate the relative browsing pressure in our predictions since the amount of tissues removed could affect the capacity of long-lived plants to compensate. Birches fully compensated for moderate browsing with an overall leaf biomass similar to unbrowsed birches but undercompensated under heavy browsing pressure. The main mechanism explaining compensation appears to be the conversion of short shoots into long shoots. The leaf area increased under heavy browsing pressure but only led to undercompensation. Fertilisation for two consecutive years did not influence the response of birch, thus we conclude that our results support the LRM hypothesis of equal tolerance under both high and low nitrogen availability. Our results highlight that the potential for compensatory growth in dwarf birch is surpassed under heavy browsing pressure independently of the fertilisation regime. In the context of the worldwide decline in caribou herds, the reduction in browsing pressure could act synergistically with global climate change to promote the current shrub expansion reported in subarctic regions. PMID:23272191

  5. Tolerance of an expanding subarctic shrub, Betula glandulosa, to simulated caribou browsing.

    PubMed

    Champagne, Emilie; Tremblay, Jean-Pierre; Côté, Steeve D

    2012-01-01

    Densification of the shrub layer has been reported in many subarctic regions, raising questions about the implication for large herbivores and their resources. Shrubs can tolerate browsing and their level of tolerance could be affected by browsing and soils productivity, eventually modifying resource availability for the caribou. Our objective was to assess the compensatory growth potential of a subarctic shrub, Betula glandulosa Michx., in relation with caribou browsing and nutriment availability for the plants. We used a simulated browsing (0, 25 and 75% of available shoots) and nitrogen-fertilisation (0 and 10 g m(-2)) experiment to test two main hypotheses linking tolerance to resource availability, the Compensatory Continuum Hypothesis and the Growth Rate Hypothesis as well as the predictions from the Limiting Resource Model. We seek to explicitly integrate the relative browsing pressure in our predictions since the amount of tissues removed could affect the capacity of long-lived plants to compensate. Birches fully compensated for moderate browsing with an overall leaf biomass similar to unbrowsed birches but undercompensated under heavy browsing pressure. The main mechanism explaining compensation appears to be the conversion of short shoots into long shoots. The leaf area increased under heavy browsing pressure but only led to undercompensation. Fertilisation for two consecutive years did not influence the response of birch, thus we conclude that our results support the LRM hypothesis of equal tolerance under both high and low nitrogen availability. Our results highlight that the potential for compensatory growth in dwarf birch is surpassed under heavy browsing pressure independently of the fertilisation regime. In the context of the worldwide decline in caribou herds, the reduction in browsing pressure could act synergistically with global climate change to promote the current shrub expansion reported in subarctic regions.

  6. Big sagebrush seed bank densities following wildfires

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Big sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) is a critical shrub to many wildlife species including sage grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus), mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), and pygmy rabbit (Brachylagus idahoensis). Big sagebrush is killed by wildfires and big sagebrush seed is generally short-lived and do not s...

  7. Artemisia tridenata seed bank densities following wildfires

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Big sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) is a critical shrub to such sagebrush obligate species as sage grouse, (Centocercus urophasianus), mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), and pygmy rabbit (Brachylagus idahoensis). Big sagebrush do not sprout after wildfires and big sagebrush seed is generally short-lived a...

  8. Big Sagebrush Seed Bank Densities Following Wildfires

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Big sagebrush (Artemisia sp.) is a critical shrub to such sagebrush obligate species as sage grouse, (Centocercus urophasianus), mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus), and pygmy rabbit (Brachylagus idahoensis). Big sagebrush do not sprout after wildfires wildfires and big sagebrush seed is generally sho...

  9. T Dwarf Explorer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fazio, Giovanni; Hora, Joseph; Luhman, Kevin; Marengo, Massimo; Patten, Brian; Sonnett, Sarah; Stauffer, John

    2007-05-01

    With the basic colors and photometry for M, L, and T dwarfs in the IRAC bandpasses established (Patten et al. 2006), we wish to shift our focus to the differences seen among objects with similar T_eff and, in particular, to expand on the exploration of the T dwarfs. While some of the observed dispersion of T dwarf colors and magnitudes in the near- and mid-IR for objects of the same sub-type can be explained by differences in metallicity and gravity, some of this scatter may also be due to binarity and intrinsic variability (i.e., 'brown dwarf weather'). We are curious as to whether or not the observed scatter with color in the infrared, which appears to be largest in the mid-T dwarfs, really tapers off and grows smaller in the late-T dwarfs, or if we are simply not seeing the whole picture due to small number statistics. On the warmer end of the T sequence, recent results suggest that the transition from the late-L to early-T types in brown dwarf temperature progresses very quickly in an evolutionary sense. Therefore, objects with early T types should be relatively rare. Many of the early-T brown dwarfs used in the in the Patten et al. 2006 study (and others) have turned out to be very close binaries (e.g. Burgasser et al. 2006), which has resulted in a deficit of true, single early-T brown dwarfs with well-determined mid-infrared colors and photometry. We are proposing to acquire IRAC photometry for an additional ~23 T-type dwarfs in order to allow us to better characterize trending with color and spectral type for the T dwarfs. These new T dwarf data will be combined with the existing T dwarf data previously acquired by IRAC to produce the color-color and color-magnitude diagrams necessary to compare observation to theory for the coolest sub-stellar mass objects known. These data will prove invaluable in constraining searches in color and magnitude space for brown dwarf companions to nearby stars as well as for free-floating brown dwarfs in the field.

  10. White Dwarf Mergers on Adaptive Meshes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Katz, Maximilian Peter

    The mergers of binary white dwarf systems are potential progenitors of astrophysical explosions such as Type Ia supernovae. These white dwarfs can merge either by orbital decay through the emission of gravitational waves or by direct collisions as a result of orbital perturbations. The coalescence of the stars may ignite nuclear fusion, resulting in the destruction of both stars through a thermonuclear runaway and ensuing detonation. The goal of this dissertation is to simulate binary white dwarf systems using the techniques of computational fluid dynamics and therefore to understand what numerical techniques are necessary to obtain accurate dynamical evolution of the system, as well as to learn what conditions are necessary to enable a realistic detonation. For this purpose I have used software that solves the relevant fluid equations, the Poisson equation for self-gravity, and the systems governing nuclear reactions between atomic species. These equations are modeled on a computational domain that uses the technique of adaptive mesh refinement to have the highest spatial resolution in the areas of the domain that are most sensitive to the need for accurate numerical evolution. I have identified that the most important obstacles to accurate evolution are the numerical violation of conservation of energy and angular momentum in the system, and the development of numerically seeded thermonuclear detonations that do not bear resemblance to physically correct detonations. I then developed methods for ameliorating these problems, and determined what metrics can be used for judging whether a given white dwarf merger simulation is trustworthy. This involved the development of a number of algorithmic improvements to the simulation software, which I describe. Finally, I performed high-resolution simulations of typical cases of white dwarf mergers and head-on collisions to demonstrate the impacts of these choices. The results of these simulations and the corresponding

  11. Spectral vegetation indices for estimating shrub cover, green phytomass and leaf turnover in a sedge-shrub tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kushida, K.; Kim, Y.; Tsuyuzaki, S.; Fukuda, M.

    2008-12-01

    Using field observations, we determined the relationships between spectral indices and the shrub ratio, green phytomass and leaf turnover of a sedge-shrub tundra community in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska, USA. We established a 50-m ~ 50-m plot (69.73°N 143.62°W) located on a floodplain of the refuge. The willow shrub (Salix lanata) and sedge (Carex bigelowii) dominated the plot vegetation. In July to August 2007, we established ten 0.5-m ~ 0.5-m quadrats on both shrub- covered ground (shrub quadrats) and on ground with no shrubs (sedge quadrats). All the shrubs within the shrub quadrats were harvested, and the photosynthetic and non-photosynthetic parts were weighed. Subsequently, the remaining green phytomass was also harvested and weighed. The shrub quadrats were measured spectrally before and after harvesting the shrubs. The sedge quadrats were also measured spectrally. The shrub ratio was more strongly correlated with the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI, R2 of 0.57) than the normalized difference infrared index (NDII), the soil-adjusted vegetation index (SAVI) or the enhanced vegetation index (EVI). On the other hand, for both green phytomass and leaf turnover, the strongest correlation was with NDII (R2 of 0.63 and 0.79, respectively).

  12. The dwarf saltwort (Salicornia bigelovii Torr.): Evaluation of breeding populations

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Breeding populations of the dwarf saltwort (Salicornia bigelovii Torr. [Chenopodiaceae]) have been evaluated under high seawater salinity (45 dS m-1) for phenotypic, morphometric, biomass and seed traits in an effort to select suitable families and genotypes within families for breeding purposes and...

  13. Seedling establishment in a masting desert shrub parallels the pattern for forest trees

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meyer, Susan E.; Pendleton, Burton K.

    2015-05-01

    The masting phenomenon along with its accompanying suite of seedling adaptive traits has been well studied in forest trees but has rarely been examined in desert shrubs. Blackbrush (Coleogyne ramosissima) is a regionally dominant North American desert shrub whose seeds are produced in mast events and scatter-hoarded by rodents. We followed the fate of seedlings in intact stands vs. small-scale disturbances at four contrasting sites for nine growing seasons following emergence after a mast year. The primary cause of first-year mortality was post-emergence cache excavation and seedling predation, with contrasting impacts at sites with different heteromyid rodent seed predators. Long-term establishment patterns were strongly affected by rodent activity in the weeks following emergence. Survivorship curves generally showed decreased mortality risk with age but differed among sites even after the first year. There were no detectable effects of inter-annual precipitation variability or site climatic differences on survival. Intraspecific competition from conspecific adults had strong impacts on survival and growth, both of which were higher on small-scale disturbances, but similar in openings and under shrub crowns in intact stands. This suggests that adult plants preempted soil resources in the interspaces. Aside from effects on seedling predation, there was little evidence for facilitation or interference beneath adult plant crowns. Plants in intact stands were still small and clearly juvenile after nine years, showing that blackbrush forms cohorts of suppressed plants similar to the seedling banks of closed forests. Seedling banks function in the absence of a persistent seed bank in replacement after adult plant death (gap formation), which is temporally uncoupled from masting and associated recruitment events. This study demonstrates that the seedling establishment syndrome associated with masting has evolved in desert shrublands as well as in forests.

  14. Astrometric Binaries: White Dwarfs?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oliversen, Nancy A.

    We propose to observe a selection of astrometric or spectroscopicastrometric binaries nearer than about 20 pc with unseen low mass companions. Systems of this type are important for determining the luminosity function of low mass stars (white dwarfs and very late main sequence M stars), and their contribution to the total mass of the galaxy. Systems of this type are also important because the low mass, invisible companions are potential candidates in the search for planets. Our target list is selected primarily from the list of 31 astrometric binaries near the sun by Lippincott (1978, Space Sci. Rev., 22, 153), with additional candidates from recent observations by Kamper. The elimination of stars with previous IUE observations, red companions resolved by infrared speckle interferometry, or primaries later than M1 (because if white dwarf companions are present they should have been detected in the visible region) reduces the list to 5 targets which need further information. IUE SWP low dispersion observations of these targets will show clearly whether the remaining unseen companions are white dwarfs, thus eliminating very cool main sequence stars or planets. This is also important in providing complete statistical information about the nearest stars. The discovery of a white dwarf in such a nearby system would provide important additional information about the masses of white dwarfs. Recent results by Greenstein (1986, A. J., 92, 859) from binary systems containing white dwarfs imply that 80% of such systems are as yet undetected. The preference of binaries for companions of approximately equal mass makes the Lippincott-Kamper list of A through K primaries with unseen companions a good one to use to search for white dwarfs. The mass and light dominance of the current primary over the white dwarf in the visible makes ultraviolet observations essential to obtain an accurate census of white dwarf binaries.

  15. M dwarfs: Theoretical work

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mullan, Dermott J.

    1987-01-01

    Theoretical work on the atmospheres of M dwarfs has progressed along lines parallel to those followed in the study of other classes of stars. Such models have become increasingly sophisticated as improvements in opacities, in the equation of state, and in the treatment of convection were incorporated during the last 15 to 20 years. As a result, spectrophotometric data on M dwarfs can now be fitted rather well by current models. The various attempts at modeling M dwarf photospheres in purely thermal terms are summarized. Some extensions of these models to include the effects of microturbulence and magnetic inhomogeneities are presented.

  16. Spectroscopy of Brown Dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rebolo, R.

    Recent searches for brown dwarfs have succeeded in finding these elusive objects. Massive brown dwarfs (40-70 Jupiter masses) have been found in the Pleiades, orbiting around a nearby star and, very recently, in the field. A review is given of their observed photometric and spectroscopic properties in the optical and near-infrared. The diagnosis of substellar nature based on lithium lines and methane bands is discussed in detail. While lithium has proved useful to test brown dwarfs with effective temperatures hotter than ~1600 K, methane is a substellar indicator at lower temperatures.

  17. High precipitation and seeded species competition reduce seeded shrub establishment during dryland restoration

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Drylands comprise 40% of Earth’s land mass and are critical to imperiled wildlife species, food security and carbon sequestration. Exotic weed invasions, overgrazing, energy extraction, and other factors have left many of the planet’s drylands in various states of degradation, and this has prompted...

  18. [Predation and removal of rodents on the seeds with different size and pericarp traits].

    PubMed

    Zhou, Li-biao; Yan, Xing-fu; Wang, Jian-li; Zhou, Yun-feng

    2013-08-01

    A field survey was conducted in the Quercus wutaishanica shrubs in Liupan Mountains of Ningxia, Northwest China to study the predation and removal of rodents on the seeds of Q. wutaishanica, Prunus salicina and Pinus armandii, aimed to explore the effects of seed size and pericarp traits on the predation and removal behaviors of rodents. The in situ seed predation rates of smaller Q. wutaishanica seeds and P. armandii seeds were significantly higher than those of larger Q. wutaishanica seeds and P. salicina seeds. The P. salicina seeds with hard and thick pericarp (endocarp) had the highest predation rate and hoarding rate after the removal by rodents. The movement distance of larger Q. wutaishanica seeds during predation events was the longest (3.10 m), and the seed hoarding distance of this species (6.48 m) was significantly longer than that of the three other types of seeds. Over 80% of sites were used as the predation sites by rodents for the seeds, except that the P. salicina seeds contained only a single seed and the cache sites contained a single seed accounted for over 90% for all types of seeds. Few predation and cache sites containing over two seeds were detected. Higher proportion of P. armandii seeds were predated in microhabitats except at the base of shrubs and in the holes after removal by rodent, while the seeds of other three types were predated mainly at the base of shrubs and in the holes after removal by rodents. The seed hoarding patterns after removal by rodents were primarily determined by pericarp traits, and higher proportion of soil burial that the rodents hoarded seeds with hard pericarp (endocarp) was detected.

  19. Shrubs tracing sea surface temperature— Calluna vulgaris on the Faroe Islands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beil, Ilka; Buras, Allan; Hallinger, Martin; Smiljanić, Marko; Wilmking, Martin

    2015-11-01

    The climate of Central and Northern Europe is highly influenced by the North Atlantic Ocean due to heat transfer from lower latitudes. Detailed knowledge about spatio-temporal variability of sea surface temperature (SST) in that region is thus of high interest for climate and environmental research. Because of the close relations between ocean and coastal climate and the climate sensitivity of plant growth, annual rings of woody plants in coastal regions might be used as a proxy for SST. We show here for the first time the proxy potential of the common and widespread evergreen dwarf shrub Calluna vulgaris (heather), using the Faroe Islands as our case study. Despite its small and irregular ring structure, the species seems suitable for dendroecological investigations. Ring width showed high and significant correlations with summer and winter air temperatures and SST. The C. vulgaris chronology from the Faroe Islands, placed directly within the North Atlantic Current, clearly reflects variations in summer SSTs over an area between Iceland and Scotland. Utilising shrubs like C. vulgaris as easy accessible and annually resolved proxies offers an interesting possibility for reconstruction of the coupled climate-ocean system at high latitudes.

  20. Shrubs tracing sea surface temperature--Calluna vulgaris on the Faroe Islands.

    PubMed

    Beil, Ilka; Buras, Allan; Hallinger, Martin; Smiljanić, Marko; Wilmking, Martin

    2015-11-01

    The climate of Central and Northern Europe is highly influenced by the North Atlantic Ocean due to heat transfer from lower latitudes. Detailed knowledge about spatio-temporal variability of sea surface temperature (SST) in that region is thus of high interest for climate and environmental research. Because of the close relations between ocean and coastal climate and the climate sensitivity of plant growth, annual rings of woody plants in coastal regions might be used as a proxy for SST. We show here for the first time the proxy potential of the common and widespread evergreen dwarf shrub Calluna vulgaris (heather), using the Faroe Islands as our case study. Despite its small and irregular ring structure, the species seems suitable for dendroecological investigations. Ring width showed high and significant correlations with summer and winter air temperatures and SST. The C. vulgaris chronology from the Faroe Islands, placed directly within the North Atlantic Current, clearly reflects variations in summer SSTs over an area between Iceland and Scotland. Utilising shrubs like C. vulgaris as easy accessible and annually resolved proxies offers an interesting possibility for reconstruction of the coupled climate-ocean system at high latitudes.

  1. Meter scale variation in shrub dominance and soil moisture structure Arctic arthropod communities

    PubMed Central

    Hansen, Oskar Liset Pryds; Bowden, Joseph J.; Treier, Urs A.; Normand, Signe; Høye, Toke

    2016-01-01

    The Arctic is warming at twice the rate of the rest of the world. This impacts Arctic species both directly, through increased temperatures, and indirectly, through structural changes in their habitats. Species are expected to exhibit idiosyncratic responses to structural change, which calls for detailed investigations at the species and community level. Here, we investigate how arthropod assemblages of spiders and beetles respond to variation in habitat structure at small spatial scales. We sampled transitions in shrub dominance and soil moisture between three different habitats (fen, dwarf shrub heath, and tall shrub tundra) at three different sites along a fjord gradient in southwest Greenland, using yellow pitfall cups. We identified 2,547 individuals belonging to 47 species. We used species richness estimation, indicator species analysis and latent variable modeling to examine differences in arthropod community structure in response to habitat variation at local (within site) and regional scales (between sites). We estimated species responses to the environment by fitting species-specific generalized linear models with environmental covariates. Species assemblages were segregated at the habitat and site level. Each habitat hosted significant indicator species, and species richness and diversity were significantly lower in fen habitats. Assemblage patterns were significantly linked to changes in soil moisture and vegetation height, as well as geographic location. We show that meter-scale variation among habitats affects arthropod community structure, supporting the notion that the Arctic tundra is a heterogeneous environment. To gain sufficient insight into temporal biodiversity change, we require studies of species distributions detailing species habitat preferences. PMID:27478709

  2. Understanding Brown Dwarf Variability

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marley, Mark S.

    2013-01-01

    Surveys of brown dwarf variability continue to find that roughly half of all brown dwarfs are variable. While variability is observed amongst all types of brown dwarfs, amplitudes are typically greatest for L-T transition objects. In my talk I will discuss the possible physical mechanisms that are responsible for the observed variability. I will particularly focus on comparing and contrasting the effects of changes in atmospheric thermal profile and cloud opacity. The two different mechanisms will produce different variability signatures and I will discuss the extent to which the current datasets constrain both mechanisms. By combining constraints from studies of variability with existing spectral and photometric datasets we can begin to construct and test self-consistent models of brown dwarf atmospheres. These models not only aid in the interpretation of existing objects but also inform studies of directly imaged giant planets.

  3. Post-fire seeding of great basin native plants using conventional and minimum-till rangeland drills

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Objectives of post-fire seeding in the Great Basin include reestablishment of perennial cover, suppression of exotic annual weeds, and increasingly restoration of diverse plant communities. Non-conventional seeding techniques may be required when seeding mixes of grasses, forbs and shrubs containing...

  4. Dwarfs in ancient Egypt.

    PubMed

    Kozma, Chahira

    2006-02-15

    Ancient Egypt was one of the most advanced and productive civilizations in antiquity, spanning 3000 years before the "Christian" era. Ancient Egyptians built colossal temples and magnificent tombs to honor their gods and religious leaders. Their hieroglyphic language, system of organization, and recording of events give contemporary researchers insights into their daily activities. Based on the record left by their art, the ancient Egyptians documented the presence of dwarfs in almost every facet of life. Due to the hot dry climate and natural and artificial mummification, Egypt is a major source of information on achondroplasia in the old world. The remains of dwarfs are abundant and include complete and partial skeletons. Dwarfs were employed as personal attendants, animal tenders, jewelers, and entertainers. Several high-ranking dwarfs especially from the Old Kingdom (2700-2190 BCE) achieved important status and had lavish burial places close to the pyramids. Their costly tombs in the royal cemeteries and the inscriptions on their statutes indicate their high-ranking position in Egyptian society and their close relation to the king. Some of them were Seneb, Pereniankh, Khnumhotpe, and Djeder. There were at least two dwarf gods, Ptah and Bes. The god Ptah was associated with regeneration and rejuvenation. The god Bes was a protector of sexuality, childbirth, women, and children. He was a favored deity particularly during the Greco-Roman period. His temple was recently excavated in the Baharia oasis in the middle of Egypt. The burial sites and artistic sources provide glimpses of the positions of dwarfs in daily life in ancient Egypt. Dwarfs were accepted in ancient Egypt; their recorded daily activities suggest assimilation into daily life, and their disorder was not shown as a physical handicap. Wisdom writings and moral teachings in ancient Egypt commanded respect for dwarfs and other individuals with disabilities.

  5. Seedling responses to water pulses in shrubs with contrasting histories of grassland encroachment.

    PubMed

    Woods, Steven R; Archer, Steven R; Schwinning, Susan

    2014-01-01

    Woody plant encroachment into grasslands has occurred worldwide, but it is unclear why some tree and shrub species have been markedly more successful than others. For example, Prosopis velutina has proliferated in many grasslands of the Sonoran Desert in North America over the past century, while other shrub species with similar growth form and life history, such as Acacia greggii, have not. We conducted a glasshouse experiment to assess whether differences in early seedling development could help explain why one species and not the other came to dominate many Sonoran Desert grasslands. We established eight watering treatments mimicking a range of natural precipitation patterns and harvested seedlings 16 or 17 days after germination. A. greggii had nearly 7 times more seed mass than P. velutina, but P. velutina emerged earlier (by 3.0±0.3 d) and grew faster (by 8.7±0.5 mg d⁻¹). Shoot mass at harvest was higher in A. greggii (99±6 mg seedling⁻¹) than in P. velutina (74±2 mg seedling⁻¹), but there was no significant difference in root mass (54±3 and 49±2 mg seedling⁻¹, respectively). Taproot elongation was differentially sensitive to water supply: under the highest initial watering pulse, taproots were 52±19 mm longer in P. velutina than in A. greggii. Enhanced taproot elongation under favorable rainfall conditions could give nascent P. velutina seedlings growth and survivorship advantages by helping reduce competition with grasses and maintain contact with soil water during drought. Conversely, A. greggii's greater investment in mass per seed appeared to provide little return in early seedling growth. We suggest that such differences in recruitment traits and their sensitivities to environmental conditions may help explain ecological differences between species that are highly similar as adults and help identify pivotal drivers of shrub encroachment into grasslands.

  6. Seedling Responses to Water Pulses in Shrubs with Contrasting Histories of Grassland Encroachment

    PubMed Central

    Woods, Steven R.; Archer, Steven R.; Schwinning, Susan

    2014-01-01

    Woody plant encroachment into grasslands has occurred worldwide, but it is unclear why some tree and shrub species have been markedly more successful than others. For example, Prosopis velutina has proliferated in many grasslands of the Sonoran Desert in North America over the past century, while other shrub species with similar growth form and life history, such as Acacia greggii, have not. We conducted a glasshouse experiment to assess whether differences in early seedling development could help explain why one species and not the other came to dominate many Sonoran Desert grasslands. We established eight watering treatments mimicking a range of natural precipitation patterns and harvested seedlings 16 or 17 days after germination. A. greggii had nearly 7 times more seed mass than P. velutina, but P. velutina emerged earlier (by 3.0±0.3 d) and grew faster (by 8.7±0.5 mg d−1). Shoot mass at harvest was higher in A. greggii (99±6 mg seedling−1) than in P. velutina (74±2 mg seedling−1), but there was no significant difference in root mass (54±3 and 49±2 mg seedling−1, respectively). Taproot elongation was differentially sensitive to water supply: under the highest initial watering pulse, taproots were 52±19 mm longer in P. velutina than in A. greggii. Enhanced taproot elongation under favorable rainfall conditions could give nascent P. velutina seedlings growth and survivorship advantages by helping reduce competition with grasses and maintain contact with soil water during drought. Conversely, A. greggii's greater investment in mass per seed appeared to provide little return in early seedling growth. We suggest that such differences in recruitment traits and their sensitivities to environmental conditions may help explain ecological differences between species that are highly similar as adults and help identify pivotal drivers of shrub encroachment into grasslands. PMID:24475263

  7. Low functional redundancy among mammalian browsers in regulating an encroaching shrub (Solanum campylacanthum) in African savannah

    PubMed Central

    Pringle, Robert M.; Goheen, Jacob R.; Palmer, Todd M.; Charles, Grace K.; DeFranco, Elyse; Hohbein, Rhianna; Ford, Adam T.; Tarnita, Corina E.

    2014-01-01

    Large herbivorous mammals play an important role in structuring African savannahs and are undergoing widespread population declines and local extinctions, with the largest species being the most vulnerable. The impact of these declines on key ecological processes hinges on the degree of functional redundancy within large-herbivore assemblages, a subject that has received little study. We experimentally quantified the effects of three browser species (elephant, impala and dik-dik) on individual- and population-level attributes of Solanum campylacanthum (Solanum incanum sensu lato), an encroaching woody shrub, using semi-permeable exclosures that selectively removed different-sized herbivores. After nearly 5 years, shrub abundance was lowest where all browser species were present and increased with each successive species deletion. Different browsers ate the same plant species in different ways, thereby exerting distinct suites of direct and indirect effects on plant performance and density. Not all of these effects were negative: elephants and impala also dispersed viable seeds and indirectly reduced seed predation by rodents and insects. We integrated these diffuse positive effects with the direct negative effects of folivory using a simple population model, which reinforced the conclusion that different browsers have complementary net effects on plant populations, and further suggested that under some conditions, these net effects may even differ in direction. PMID:24789900

  8. Does browsing reduce shrub survival and vigor following summer fires?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fulbright, Timothy E.; Dacy, Emily C.; Drawe, D. Lynn

    2011-01-01

    Periodic fire is widely hypothesized to limit woody plant encroachment in semiarid grasslands. In southern Texas, however, most of the woody plants that have invaded grasslands during the past two centuries are resistant to fire. We hypothesized that browsing by Odocoileus virginianus increases mortality of palatable shrubs and reduces vigor of shrubs following fire. We randomly selected ten pairs of each of three shrub species -Condalia hookeri, Acacia farnesiana, and Celtis ehrenbergiana - in each of three locations before prescribed burns during summer 2001. Following burns, we used a wire fence to protect one shrub of each pair from browsing. We estimated intensity of O. virginianus browsing and number and height of sprouts 4, 12, 20, 30, 38, and 47 weeks post-fire. We determined shrub height, survival, and biomass one year post-fire. Averaged across species, browsing intensity on unfenced shrubs was greater (LS Means, P < 0.05) than on fenced shrubs on all sampling dates except four and 30 weeks post-fire. Mortality of unfenced (11 ± 9%) (mean ± SE) and fenced (12 ± 7%, n = 9) shrubs was similar (P = 0.674) one year post-fire, averaged across shrub species. Number of sprouts, sprout height, total plant height, and biomass of protected and browsed plants were similar (P > 0.05) one year post-burn. Browsing by O. virginianus at the intensity in our study does not increase mortality or reduce vigor of C. hookeri, A. farnesiana, and Condalia ehrenbergiana producing new growth following destruction of aboveground tissues by a single fire compared to shrubs that are not browsed following fire.

  9. Quercus ilex L. carbon sequestration capability related to shrub size.

    PubMed

    Gratani, Loretta; Catoni, Rosangela; Varone, Laura

    2011-07-01

    CO(2) sequestration capacity of Quercus ilex L., an evergreen species developing in shrub and forest communities widely distributed in the Mediterranean Basin, was analysed. Experiments were carried out in the period of January to December 2009 on 20 shrubs of different size, growing at the Botanical Garden of Rome. At shrub level, the largest differences concern total photosynthetic leaf surface area per shrub and shrub volume. Shrubs structure significantly contribute to reduce total irradiance and air temperature below the canopy. Leaf mass per area is higher in sun leaves than in shade ones (20 ± 1 and 12 ± 2 mg cm( -2), respectively). Sun leaves are also characterised by the highest leaf thickness (78% higher in sun than in shade leaves), the spongy parenchyma thickness (71% higher in sun than in shade leaves) and the highest adaxial cuticle thickness (7.2 ± 1.2 and 4.7 ± 0.5 μm, respectively). Net photosynthetic rates (P (N)) of sun and shade leaves are the highest in spring, and shade leaves contribute 6% to the whole shrub P (N). Q. ilex CO(2) sequestration depends on shrub size. In particular, the CO(2) sequestration per shrub was 0.20 ± 0.02 Kg CO(2) year( -1) in small shrubs, and it was 75% and 98% lower than in medium and large ones. The highest CO(2) sequestration is measured in spring, decreasing 77% during drought. Q. ilex may play a significant role in mitigating carbon dioxide concentration and lowering air and soil temperature in areas around the Mediterranean Basin.

  10. High male fertility in males of a subdioecious shrub in hand-pollinated crosses

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Hui; Matsushita, Michinari; Tomaru, Nobuhiro; Nakagawa, Michiko

    2016-01-01

    Female reproductive success in females versus hermaphrodites has been well documented. However, documenting a potential advantage in male fertility of male versus hermaphrodite individuals in subdioecious species is also essential for understanding the evolutionary pathway toward dioecy from hermaphroditism via gynodioecy. Siring success in terms of fruit set, fruit mass, number of seeds and mean seed mass was compared by hand-pollinated crosses in the subdioecious shrub Eurya japonica. The pollen was from male and hermaphrodite individuals, and the pollen recipients were females and hermaphrodites. Seed quality was also evaluated in terms of seed germination rate, seed germination day and seedling survival. Overall, pollen from males sired more fruits of larger size and more seeds than did pollen from hermaphrodites. The male advantage was observed when pollen recipients were females, whereas no effect was found in hermaphrodite recipients. Pollen from males also produced better quality seeds with higher germination rate and sooner germination day. Although these results could also be explained by a higher pollen load for crosses with male pollen donors, we took care to saturate the stigma regardless of the pollen donor. Therefore, these results suggest that male individuals of E. japonica have advantages in male fertility in terms of both quantity and quality. Our previous studies indicated that females exhibit higher female reproductive success compared with hermaphrodites. Thus, both the female and male functions of hermaphrodites are outperformed by females and males, respectively, raising the possibility that the subdioecious E. japonica at this study site is entering the transitional phase to dioecy along the gynodioecy–dioecy pathway. PMID:27658818

  11. Among-individual variation in pollen limitation and inbreeding depression in a mixed-mating shrub

    PubMed Central

    González-Varo, Juan P.; Traveset, Anna

    2010-01-01

    Background and Aims Variation in inbreeding depression (δ) among individual plants is considered to play a central role in mating system evolution and population genetics. Moreover, such variation could be linked to individual susceptibility to pollen limitation (PL) because those individuals strongly affected by δ for seed production will require more outcross pollen for setting a given number of fruits or seeds. However, no study has tested explicitly for associations between PL and δ at the individual plant level. This study assesses the extent of among-individual variation in PL and δ, the consistency of δ across life stages, and the relationships between individual PL and δ in the mixed-mating shrub Myrtus communis. Methods Controlled hand-pollinations were performed in a natural M. communis population. Marked flowers were monitored until fruit production and a greenhouse experiment was conducted with the seeds produced. Key Results Compared with selfing, outcross-pollination enhanced seed number per fruit, germination rate and seedling growth, but did not enhance fruit-set. Only seed number per fruit was pollen limited and, thus, cumulative pollen limitation depended more on pollen quality (outcross pollen) than on quantity. The effects of δ varied considerably across life stages and individual plants. Cumulative δ was high across individuals (mean δ = 0·65), although there were no positive correlations between δ values at different life stages. Interestingly, maternal plants showing stronger δ for seed production were more pollen limited, but they were also less affected by δ for seedling growth because of a seed size/number trade-off. Conclusions Results show a general inconsistency in δ across life stages and individuals, suggesting that different deleterious loci are acting at different stages. The association between δ and PL at the individual level corroborates the idea that pollen limitation may be ‘genotype-dependent’ regardless of

  12. The changing role of shrubs in rangeland-based livestock production systems: Can shrubs increase our forage supply?

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Projected global increases in ruminant numbers and loss of native grasslands will present a number of challenges for livestock agriculture. Escalated demand for livestock products may stimulate interest in using shrubs on western rangelands. A paradigm shift is needed to change the role of shrubs in...

  13. Burial increases seed longevity of two Artemisia tridentata (Asteraceae) subspecies

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wijayratne, Upekala C.; Pyke, David A.

    2012-01-01

    Premise of the study: Seed longevity and persistence in soil seed banks may be especially important for population persistence in ecosystems where opportunities for seedling establishment and disturbance are unpredictable. The fire regime, an important driver of population dynamics in sagebrush steppe ecosystems, has been altered by exotic annual grass invasion. Soil seed banks may play an active role in postfire recovery of the foundation shrub Artemisia tridentata, yet conditions under which seeds persist are largely unknown. Methods: We investigated seed longevity of two Artemisia tridentata subspecies in situ by retrieving seed bags that were placed at varying depths over a 2 yr period. We also sampled naturally dispersed seeds in litter and soil immediately after seed dispersal and before flowering in subsequent seasons to estimate seed persistence. Key results: After 24 mo, seeds buried at least 3 cm below the soil surface retained 30–40% viability whereas viability of seeds on the surface and under litter declined to 0 and Artemisia tridentata has the potential to form a short-term soil seed bank that persists longer than has been commonly assumed, and that burial is necessary for seed longevity. Use of seeding techniques that promote burial of some seeds to aid in formation of a soil seed bank may increase restoration potential.

  14. Photometric Variability of Y Dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trucks, Jesica; Cushing, M.; Hardegree-Ullman, K.; Gelino, C. R.; Kirkpatrick, J. D.; Mace, G. N.; Gizis, J.; Marley, M. S.; Morley, C.; Fortney, J. J.

    2014-01-01

    Condensate clouds are present in brown dwarf atmospheres due to their low surface temperatures. As the coolest (Teff < 600 K) class of brown dwarfs currently known, Y dwarfs allow us to study the unique atmospheric physics that occur at these temperatures including the formation of sulfide, chloride, and water clouds. Dynamic inhomogeneities in cloud cover should manifest as photometric variabilities in the observed light curves of brown dwarfs. This phenomenon was originally documented in two brown-dwarfs by Morales-Calderón et al. (2006) at 4.5 microns, and in one brown dwarf by Heinze et al. (2013) at 3.6 microns. We describe our ongoing program to monitor fourteen Y dwarfs for photometric variability at 3.6 and 4.5 microns with the Spitzer Space Telescope and present initial results including the first detection of Y dwarf variability.

  15. Shrub Expansion Effects on Soil Carbon Dynamics in the Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holden, S. R.; Mortero, G.; Welker, J. M.; Czimczik, C. I.

    2015-12-01

    Shrubs are increasing in abundance in the Arctic in response to climate warming, but the consequences of shrub expansion for the vast soil carbon (C) stocks in the Arctic are poorly understood. Increases in productivity and associated increases in soil C inputs may augment soil C stocks. Alternatively, labile C exudates from shrub roots may stimulate decomposition of existing soil C and decrease C stocks. We used two complementary approaches to characterize the potential impacts of shrub expansion on soil C dynamics in the Arctic. First, in graminoid and shrub tundra near Toolik Lake, AK we surveyed thaw depth, measured depth profiles of %C, %N, δ13C, and Δ14C, and inventoried soil C stocks to 1 m. We found that the thaw depth was 42% shallower under shrubs compared to graminoid tundra. In addition, mineral soils from shrub tundra had a significantly higher C content than graminoid tundra. Similarly, mineral soils from shrub tundra had lower (depleted) δ13C values compared to graminoid tundra, indicating that this soil has undergone less microbial processing. We also found that C under shrub tundra was on average older, and shrub tundra had significantly higher C stocks to 1 m than graminoid tundra. Second, we conducted a priming experiment with graminoid soil from Toolik Lake, AK. We incubated organic soil, the top 10 cm of mineral soil, and the lower 10 cm of active layer mineral soil with supplemental sucrose at 7°C and 22°C. We found that the addition of labile C did not increase microbial decomposition of existing C in mineral soils. Taken together, our findings suggest that shrub expansion may augment soil C storage in the Arctic because a greater proportion of soil C is frozen in permafrost, soil C under shrubs turns over more slowly, and existing C in mineral soil does not appear to be vulnerable to loss via priming. The observed impacts of shrub expansion on soil C stocks should be incorporated into earth system models that predict the carbon

  16. Too Many Is Too Bad: Long-Term Net Negative Effects of High Density Ungulate Populations on a Dominant Mediterranean Shrub.

    PubMed

    Lecomte, Xavier; Fedriani, José M; Caldeira, Maria C; Clemente, Adelaide S; Olmi, Alessandro; Bugalho, Miguel N

    2016-01-01

    Plant-animal interactions imply costs and benefits with net balance depending on interacting species and ecological context. Ungulates, in particular, confer costs (e.g., plant leaf consumption, flower bud predation) and benefits (e.g., plant overcompensation, seed dispersal) to plants. Magnitude of costs and benefits may be altered by habitat management or ecological conditions favoring high density ungulate populations. Little is known however on whether plant costs or benefits predominate over the years, or the long-term outcomes of plant-animal interactions in habitat types sustaining high density ungulate populations. We investigated how high density ungulate populations alter plant costs and benefits by quantifying ungulate long-term effects on the shrub Cistus ladanifer (Cistaceae) individual size, seed weight and number, seed bank, and population density, through a 12-year ungulate exclusion experiment in a Mediterranean scrubland. We monitored plant size and flower buds in plants exposed or protected from ungulates and number of developed capsules and seeds consumed (potential seed dispersal) by ungulates during three reproductive seasons. We found that ungulates negatively affected shrub size and led to a dramatically decline of shrub reproductive structures and seed production, affecting the plant reproductive cycle. Number of buds was 27 times higher and number of developed seed 5 times higher in ungulate-excluded as compared to ungulate-exposed plots. After 9 years of ungulate exclusion, the C. ladanifer seed bank was 2.6 times higher in ungulate-excluded plots. The population density of C. ladanifer was 4 times higher in ungulate-excluded plots. Our long-term experiment showed that high density ungulate populations can alter plant-animal interactions by reducing plant benefits and increasing plant costs.

  17. Too Many Is Too Bad: Long-Term Net Negative Effects of High Density Ungulate Populations on a Dominant Mediterranean Shrub

    PubMed Central

    Lecomte, Xavier; Fedriani, José M.; Caldeira, Maria C.; Clemente, Adelaide S.; Olmi, Alessandro; Bugalho, Miguel N.

    2016-01-01

    Plant–animal interactions imply costs and benefits with net balance depending on interacting species and ecological context. Ungulates, in particular, confer costs (e.g., plant leaf consumption, flower bud predation) and benefits (e.g., plant overcompensation, seed dispersal) to plants. Magnitude of costs and benefits may be altered by habitat management or ecological conditions favoring high density ungulate populations. Little is known however on whether plant costs or benefits predominate over the years, or the long-term outcomes of plant-animal interactions in habitat types sustaining high density ungulate populations. We investigated how high density ungulate populations alter plant costs and benefits by quantifying ungulate long-term effects on the shrub Cistus ladanifer (Cistaceae) individual size, seed weight and number, seed bank, and population density, through a 12-year ungulate exclusion experiment in a Mediterranean scrubland. We monitored plant size and flower buds in plants exposed or protected from ungulates and number of developed capsules and seeds consumed (potential seed dispersal) by ungulates during three reproductive seasons. We found that ungulates negatively affected shrub size and led to a dramatically decline of shrub reproductive structures and seed production, affecting the plant reproductive cycle. Number of buds was 27 times higher and number of developed seed 5 times higher in ungulate-excluded as compared to ungulate-exposed plots. After 9 years of ungulate exclusion, the C. ladanifer seed bank was 2.6 times higher in ungulate-excluded plots. The population density of C. ladanifer was 4 times higher in ungulate-excluded plots. Our long-term experiment showed that high density ungulate populations can alter plant-animal interactions by reducing plant benefits and increasing plant costs. PMID:27387134

  18. Asteroseismology of White Dwarf Stars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hansen, Carl J.

    1997-01-01

    The primary purpose of this investigation has been to study various aspects of multimode pulsations in variable white dwarfs. In particular, nonlinear interactions among pulsation modes in white dwarfs (and, to some extent, in other variable stars), analysis of recent observations where such interactions are important, and preliminary work on the effects of crystallization in cool white dwarfs are reported.

  19. The search for brown dwarfs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stevenson, David J.

    1991-01-01

    The theory of brown dwarfs is summarized and observational findings regarding brown dwarfs are reviewed. The equation of state, the thermal properties, the interior transport properties, the boundary conditions, and the initial conditions are examined. Indirect observations, IR speckle interferometry, IR photometry, and field observations of brown dwarfs are discussed.

  20. Supplementing seed banks to rehabilitate disturbed Mojave Desert shrublands: where do all the seeds go?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    DeFalco, Lesley A.; Esque, Todd C.; Nicklas, Melissa B.; Kane, Jeffrey M.

    2012-01-01

    Revegetation of degraded arid lands often involves supplementing impoverished seed banks and improving the seedbed, yet these approaches frequently fail. To understand these failures, we tracked the fates of seeds for six shrub species that were broadcast across two contrasting surface disturbances common to the Mojave Desert—sites compacted by concentrated vehicle use and trenched sites where topsoil and subsurface soils were mixed. We evaluated seedbed treatments that enhance soil-seed contact (tackifier) and create surface roughness while reducing soil bulk density (harrowing). We also explored whether seed harvesting by granivores and seedling suppression by non-native annuals influence the success of broadcast seeding in revegetating degraded shrublands. Ten weeks after treatments, seeds readily moved off of experimental plots in untreated compacted sites, but seed movements were reduced 32% by tackifier and 55% through harrowing. Harrowing promoted seedling emergence in compacted sites, particularly for the early-colonizing species Encelia farinosa, but tackifier was largely ineffective. The inherent surface roughness of trenched sites retained three times the number of seeds than compacted sites, but soil mixing during trench development likely altered the suitability of the seedbed thus resulting in poor seedling emergence. Non-native annuals had little influence on seed fates during our study. In contrast, the prevalence of harvester ants increased seed removal on compacted sites, whereas rodent activity influenced removal on trenched sites. Future success of broadcast seeding in arid lands depends on evaluating disturbance characteristics prior to seeding and selecting appropriate species and seasons for application.

  1. Evolutionary and ecological correlates of early seedling morphology in East African trees and shrubs.

    PubMed

    Zanne, Amy E; Chapman, Colin A; Kitajima, Kaoru

    2005-06-01

    Seed size and cotyledon morphology are two key juvenile traits that have evolved in response to changes in plant species life-history strategies and habitat associations. Correlations of these traits with each other and with other juvenile traits were examined for 70 species of trees and shrubs in Kibale National Park, Uganda. Although species with photosynthetic cotyledons were more abundant than in other tropical floras, both univariate and multivariate analyses supported trait associations expected from the literature. Trait values varied continuously across species, yet mean trait values differed significantly among habitat association types. Species with large seeds, large seedlings, thick storage cotyledons, slow germination, large-stature adults, and dispersal by large animals were common in forest and gap habitats. An opposite suite of traits was common in open habitats (grassland and edge). Analyses incorporating phylogeny (independent contrasts and omnibus tests) confirmed that these suites of traits showed correlated evolution. Cotyledon functional morphology yielded a strong phylogenetic signal, while seed mass was labile. Nevertheless, contingent change tests found that evolutionary change from photosynthetic to reserve cotyledons was more likely when disperser and perhaps seed size of ancestral species were already large, suggesting a strong interdependency among these traits.

  2. Hares promote seed dispersal and seedling establishment after volcanic eruptions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nomura, Nanae; Tsuyuzaki, Shiro

    2015-02-01

    Although seed dispersal through animal guts (endozoochory) is a process that determines plant establishment, the behaviour of carriers mean that the seeds are not always dispersed to suitable habitats for germination. The germinable seeds of Gaultheria miqueliana were stored in the pellets of a hare (Lepus timidus ainu) on Mount Koma in northern Japan. To clarify the roles of hares in seed dispersal and germination, field censuses and laboratory experiments were conducted. The field observations were conducted on pellets and seeds in four habitats (bare ground, G. miqueliana shrub patch, Salix reinii patch, and Larix kaempferi understory), and the laboratory experiments were conducted on seed germination with different light, water potential and cold stratification treatments. The laboratory experiments confirmed that seed germination began a few weeks after the sowing of seeds, independent of cold stratification, when light was sufficient and the water potential was low. The seeds did not germinate at high water potential. The pellets were gradually degraded in situ. More seeds germinated from crushed than from intact pellets. Therefore, over the long term, seeds germinated when exposed to light due to the degradation of pellets. The pellets were proportionally dispersed among the four studied habitats. More seeds sown in the field germinated more in shaded habitats, such as in the Gaultheria patch and the Larix understory, and seeds did not germinate on bare ground, where drought often occurred. Thus, the hares had two roles in the dispersal and germination of seeds: (1) the expansion of G. miqueliana populations through seed dispersal to various habitats and (2) the facilitation of delayed seed germination to avoid risks of hazards such as drought. The relationships between small mammals represented by the hare and the shrubs that produce berries are likely to be more mutually evolved than was previously thought.

  3. Long-Term Perspectives of Shrub Expansions and Peat Initiation in Arctic Tundra on the North Slope of Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cleary, K.; Yu, Z.

    2014-12-01

    The ongoing climate warming in the Arctic has caused rapid terrestrial ecosystem changes, including shrub expansion and permafrost thaw. Here we used results from a peat-accumulating permafrost tundra in upper Imnavait Creek on the Arctic foothills of Alaska (68° 36' N, 149° 18' W) to investigate ecological responses to recent climate warming in the context of the last millennium. Six peat soil cores were collected from Sphagnum mosaics along an elevational gradient from 906 m to 950 m on a hillslope covered by Eriophorum-dominated tussock tundra. Macrofossil analysis documents a consistent development sequence among all cores from a mineral soil to a minerotrophic sedge peat and finally to an ombrotrophic Sphagnum peat. The 14C dating results show the ages of peat initiation range from about 900 to 140 cal BP, but do not follow the elevation gradient, suggesting the dominant control of local factors. The Sphagnum onset begins at 1820 AD near the ridge top, and subsequently propagates downslope to the floodplain at 2008 AD. This transition (ombrotrophication) was likely in response to Arctic warming, and subsequent permafrost thaw and active layer thickening, leading to drying initiating at the ridge top and facilitating Sphagnum colonization. Pollen analysis of the master core UIC13-3 at 916 m elevation (basal age 700 cal BP) shows that the vegetation was dominated by sedges (up to 84%) during the cool Little Ice Age until 1800 AD, followed by increases in shrubs first from dwarf birch (Betula nana) (up to 57%) and then willows (Salix spp.) up to 62% in the 1960s. These results indicate that shrub expansion of willows, due to accelerated warming in recent decades, was preceded by birch expansion over the last two centuries. Our new results provide a long-term perspective on ecological transformations in the Arctic, in particular the history of recent shrub expansions and the process of peatland initiation and expansion across Arctic tundra.

  4. Pollinating Bees Crucial to Farming Wildflower Seed for U.S. Habitat Restoration

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Federal land managers desire seed of Great Basin perennial wildflowers, mixed with grass and shrub seed, to rehabilitate millions of acres of rangelands degraded by altered wildfire regimes, overgrazing and exotic grasses and forbs. At stake are half the nation’s sagebrush communities. Only farmed...

  5. Climate sensitivity of shrub growth across the tundra biome

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myers-Smith, Isla H.; Elmendorf, Sarah C.; Beck, Pieter S. A.; Wilmking, Martin; Hallinger, Martin; Blok, Daan; Tape, Ken D.; Rayback, Shelly A.; Macias-Fauria, Marc; Forbes, Bruce C.; Speed, James D. M.; Boulanger-Lapointe, Noémie; Rixen, Christian; Lévesque, Esther; Schmidt, Niels Martin; Baittinger, Claudia; Trant, Andrew J.; Hermanutz, Luise; Collier, Laura Siegwart; Dawes, Melissa A.; Lantz, Trevor C.; Weijers, Stef; Jørgensen, Rasmus Halfdan; Buchwal, Agata; Buras, Allan; Naito, Adam T.; Ravolainen, Virve; Schaepman-Strub, Gabriela; Wheeler, Julia A.; Wipf, Sonja; Guay, Kevin C.; Hik, David S.; Vellend, Mark

    2015-09-01

    Rapid climate warming in the tundra biome has been linked to increasing shrub dominance. Shrub expansion can modify climate by altering surface albedo, energy and water balance, and permafrost, yet the drivers of shrub growth remain poorly understood. Dendroecological data consisting of multi-decadal time series of annual shrub growth provide an underused resource to explore climate-growth relationships. Here, we analyse circumpolar data from 37 Arctic and alpine sites in 9 countries, including 25 species, and ~42,000 annual growth records from 1,821 individuals. Our analyses demonstrate that the sensitivity of shrub growth to climate was: (1) heterogeneous, with European sites showing greater summer temperature sensitivity than North American sites, and (2) higher at sites with greater soil moisture and for taller shrubs (for example, alders and willows) growing at their northern or upper elevational range edges. Across latitude, climate sensitivity of growth was greatest at the boundary between the Low and High Arctic, where permafrost is thawing and most of the global permafrost soil carbon pool is stored. The observed variation in climate-shrub growth relationships should be incorporated into Earth system models to improve future projections of climate change impacts across the tundra biome.

  6. Direct seeding woody species for restoration of bottomlands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Twedt, D.J.; Connor, Kristina F

    2006-01-01

    I direct seeded (broadcast) seeds of 39 species of trees and shrubs using an ATV-mounted rotary spreader to initiate restoration of bottomland forest on retired agricultural sites. Four sites were planted during February, 2000, and 13 additional sites were planted during April and May, 2001. After two growing seasons, stem density of direct-seeded species varied greatly among study plots (range = 0 to 888 stems/ha) but averaged only 110 stems/ha. I recommend that future efforts at direct seeding focus on seven shrub species (Amorpha fruticosa L., Cephalanthus occidentalis L., Cornus spp., Crataegus spp., Ilex decidua Walt., Morus rubra L., and Prunus spp.) and seven tree species (Celtis laevigata Willd., Diospyros virginiana L., Fraxinus spp., Gleditsia triacanthos L., Robinia pseudoacacia L., Taxodium distichum (L.) Rich, and Ulmus spp.) that successfully established in these trials.

  7. Characterizing the population of active galactic nuclei in dwarf galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baldassare, Vivienne F.; Reines, Amy E.; Gallo, Elena; Greene, Jenny E.

    2017-01-01

    Clues to super-massive black hole (BH) formation and growth reside in the population and properties of BHs in local dwarf galaxies. The masses of BHs in these systems are our best observational constraint on the masses of the first BH "seeds" at high redshift. Moreover, present-day dwarf galaxies are unlikely to have undergone major mergers, making them a relatively pristine testbed for studying triggers of BH accretion. However, in order to find BHs in dwarf galaxies outside the Local Group, it is necessary to search for signatures of accretion, i.e., active galactic nuclei (AGN). Until recently, only a handful of dwarf galaxies were known to contain AGN. However, large surveys such as the SDSS have led to the production of samples of over a hundred dwarf galaxies with AGN signatures (see e.g., Reines et al. 2013). My dissertation work has involved in-depth, multi-wavelength follow-up of nearby (z<0.055) dwarf galaxies with optical spectroscopic AGN signatures in SDSS.I analyzed high resolution spectra of dwarf galaxies with narrow-line AGN, which led to the discovery of a 50,000 MSun BH in the nucleus of RGG 118 - the smallest BH yet reported in a galaxy nucleus (Baldassare et al. 2015). I also used multi-epoch optical spectroscopy to study the nature of broad H-alpha emission in dwarf galaxies. A characteristic signature of dense gas orbiting around a BH, broad emission can also be produced by transient stellar processes. I showed that broad H-alpha in star-forming dwarf galaxies fades over a baseline of 5-10 years, and is likely produced by e.g., a Type II SN as opposed to an AGN. However, broad emission in dwarf galaxies with AGN/composite narrow lines is persistent and consistent across observations, suggesting an AGN origin (Baldassare et al. 2016). Finally, I analyzed X-ray and UV observations of dwarf galaxies with broad and narrow-line AGN signatures. All targets had nuclear X-ray detections at levels significantly higher than expected from X-ray binaries

  8. Distinct temperature sensitivity among taiga and tundra shrubs in Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Andreu-Hayles, L.; Anchukaitis, K. J.; D'Arrigo, R.

    2014-12-01

    Shrub expansion into Arctic and alpine tundra ecosystems is well documented, mostly over the last 50 years, based on remote sensing data, aerial photography, and in-situ observations. Warming temperatures are considered the main driver of the observed change in shrub vegetation patterns. Here, we assess the relationship between temperatures and shrub growth from five populations of Salix spp. (willow) and Alnus spp. (alder) in Alaska growing within the tundra and the boreal forest (~taiga) using dendrochronological techniques. The three tundra shrub sites are located on the Dalton Highway north from Toolik Lake (~69ºN 148ºW), whereas the two taiga shrub sites are located closer to Fairbanks at the Twelve Mile Summit site (~65ºN 146ºW). Because shrub ages vary among the studied populations lead to different time spans for the ring-width chronologies generated, a common period with available satellite data spanning from 1982 to 2010 was selected for this study. All tundra shrub chronologies shared a strong positive response to summer temperatures despite growing in heterogeneous site conditions and belonging to different species. In contrast, in the taiga, summer temperatures enhance willow growth, whereas alder growth appears almost insensitive to temperature over the interval studied. Extending the analyses back in time, a very strong positive relationship was found between alder ring-width and June temperatures prior to 1970. This phenomenon, a weakening of the previously existing relationship between growth and temperatures, was also detected in white spruce (Picea glauca) growing at the same site, and it is known in the literature as the 'divergence problem'. Thus, at this taiga location, alder shrubs and trees seem to have similar growth patterns. Summer temperatures no longer seem to enhance taiga alder growth. Shrubs of different species exposed to the same climatic conditions can exhibit varied growth responses. The distinct temperature sensitivities

  9. Effects of rodent species, seed species, and predator cues on seed fate

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sivy, Kelly J.; Ostoja, Steven M.; Schupp, Eugene W.; Durham, Susan

    2011-07-01

    Seed selection, removal and subsequent management by granivorous animals is thought to be a complex interaction of factors including qualities of the seeds themselves (e.g., seed size, nutritional quality) and features of the local habitat (e.g. perceived predator risk). At the same time, differential seed selection and dispersal is thought to have profound effects on seed fate and potentially vegetation dynamics. In a feeding arena, we tested whether rodent species, seed species, and indirect and direct predation cues influence seed selection and handling behaviors (e.g., scatter hoarding versus larder hoarding) of two heteromyid rodents, Ord's kangaroo rat ( Dipodomys ordii) and the Great Basin pocket mouse ( Perognathus parvus). The indirect cue was shrub cover, a feature of the environment. Direct cues, presented individually, were (1) control, (2) coyote ( Canis latrans) vocalization, (3) coyote scent, (4) red fox ( Vulpes vulpes) scent, or (5) short-eared owl ( Asio flammeus) vocalization. We offered seeds of three sizes: two native grasses, Indian ricegrass ( Achnatherum hymenoides) and bluebunch wheatgrass ( Pseudoroegneria spicata), and the non-native cereal rye ( Secale cereale), each in separate trays. Kangaroo rats preferentially harvested Indian ricegrass while pocket mice predominately harvested Indian ricegrass and cereal rye. Pocket mice were more likely to scatter hoard preferred seeds, whereas kangaroo rats mostly consumed and/or larder hoarded preferred seeds. No predator cue significantly affected seed preferences. However, both species altered seed handling behavior in response to direct predation cues by leaving more seeds available in the seed pool, though they responded to different predator cues. If these results translate to natural dynamics on the landscape, the two rodents are expected to have different impacts on seed survival and plant recruitment via their different seed selection and seed handling behaviors.

  10. Effects of rodent species, seed species, and predator cues on seed fate

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Sivy, Kelly J.; Ostoja, Steven M.; Schupp, Eugene W.; Durham, Susan

    2011-01-01

    Seed selection, removal and subsequent management by granivorous animals is thought to be a complex interaction of factors including qualities of the seeds themselves (e.g., seed size, nutritional quality) and features of the local habitat (e.g. perceived predator risk). At the same time, differential seed selection and dispersal is thought to have profound effects on seed fate and potentially vegetation dynamics. In a feeding arena, we tested whether rodent species, seed species, and indirect and direct predation cues influence seed selection and handling behaviors (e.g., scatter hoarding versus larder hoarding) of two heteromyid rodents, Ord's kangaroo rat (Dipodomys ordii) and the Great Basin pocket mouse (Perognathus parvus). The indirect cue was shrub cover, a feature of the environment. Direct cues, presented individually, were (1) control, (2) coyote (Canis latrans) vocalization, (3) coyote scent, (4) red fox (Vulpes vulpes) scent, or (5) short-eared owl (Asio flammeus) vocalization. We offered seeds of three sizes: two native grasses, Indian ricegrass (Achnatherum hymenoides) and bluebunch wheatgrass (Pseudoroegneria spicata), and the non-native cereal rye (Secale cereale), each in separate trays. Kangaroo rats preferentially harvested Indian ricegrass while pocket mice predominately harvested Indian ricegrass and cereal rye. Pocket mice were more likely to scatter hoard preferred seeds, whereas kangaroo rats mostly consumed and/or larder hoarded preferred seeds. No predator cue significantly affected seed preferences. However, both species altered seed handling behavior in response to direct predation cues by leaving more seeds available in the seed pool, though they responded to different predator cues. If these results translate to natural dynamics on the landscape, the two rodents are expected to have different impacts on seed survival and plant recruitment via their different seed selection and seed handling behaviors.

  11. Origins, Evolution, and Fate of Brown Dwarfs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Martin, Eduardo

    2003-01-01

    Research related to the origins, evolution and fate of brown dwarfs is presented. The topics include: 1) Imaging surveys for brown dwarfs; 2) Companion detection techniques; 3) Measurements of fundamental properties of brown dwarfs; 4) Classification schemes for ultracool dwarfs; 5) Origins and evolution of brown dwarfs; 6) Ultracool atmospheres and interiors; 7) Time variable phenomena in brown dwarfs; 8) Comparisons between brown dwarfs and planets; 9) Substellar mass functions; and 10) Future facilities.

  12. Fire season and intensity affect shrub recruitment in temperate sclerophyllous woodlands.

    PubMed

    Knox, K J E; Clarke, P J

    2006-10-01

    The season in which a fire occurs may regulate plant seedling recruitment because of: (1) the interaction of season and intensity of fire and the temperature requirements for seed release, germination and growth; (2) post-fire rainfall and temperature patterns affecting germination; (3) the interaction of post-fire germination conditions and competition from surrounding vegetation; and (4) the interaction of post-fire germination conditions and seed predators and/or seedling herbivores. This study examined the effects of different fire intensities and fire seasons on the emergence and survival of shrubs representing a range of fire response syndromes from a summer rainfall cool climate region. Replicated experimental burns were conducted in two seasons (spring and autumn) in 2 consecutive years and fuel loads were increased to examine the effects of fire intensity (low intensity and moderate intensity). Post-fire watering treatments partitioned the effects of seasonal temperature from soil moisture. Higher intensity fires resulted in enhanced seedling emergence for hard-seeded species but rarely influenced survival. Spring fires enhanced seedling emergence across all functional groups. Reduced autumn recruitment was related to seasonal temperature inhibiting germination rather than a lack of soil moisture or competition. In Mediterranean-type climate regions, seedling emergence has been related to post-fire rainfall and exposure of seeds to seed predators. We think a similar model may operate in temperate summer rainfall regions where cold-induced dormancy over winter exposes seeds to predators for a longer time and subsequently results in recruitment failure. Our results support the theory that the effect of fire season is more predictable where there are strong seasonal patterns in climate. In this study seasonal temperature rather than rainfall appears to be more influential.

  13. Seed Germination

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Initiation of seed germination is a critical decision for plants. It is important for seed populations under natural conditions to spread the timing of germination of individual seeds to maximize the probability of species survival. Therefore, seeds have evolved the multiple layers of mechanisms tha...

  14. Shrub expansion and climate feedbacks in Arctic tundra

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Loranty, Michael M.; Goetz, Scott J.

    2012-03-01

    Arctic tundra ecosystems stand to play a substantial role in both the magnitude and rate of global climate warming over the coming decades and centuries. The exact nature of this role will be determined by the combined effects of currently amplified rates of climate warming in the Arctic (Serreze et al 2000) and a series of related positive climate feedbacks that include mobilization of permafrost carbon (Schuur et al 2008), decreases in surface albedo (Chapin et al 2005) and evapotranspiration (ET) mediated increases in atmospheric water vapor (Swann et al 2010). Conceptually, these feedback mechanisms are intuitive and readily comprehensible: warming-induced permafrost thaw will make new soil carbon pools accessible for microbial respiration, and increased vegetation productivity, expansion of shrubs in particular, will lower surface reflectance and increase ET. However, our current understanding of these feedback mechanisms relies largely on limited and local field studies and, as such, the quantitative estimates of feedback effects on regional and global climate require spatial upscaling and uncertainty estimates derived from models. Moreover, the feedback mechanisms interact and their combined net effect on climate is highly variable and not well characterized. A recent study by Bonfils et al (2012) is among the first to explicitly examine how shrub expansion in tundra ecosystems will impact regional climate. Using an Earth system model, Bonfils et al find that an idealized 20% increase in shrub cover north of 60°N latitude will lead to annual temperature increases of 0.66 °C and 1.84 °C, respectively, when the shrubs are 0.5 m and 2 m tall. The modeled temperature increases arise from atmospheric heating as a combined consequence of decreased albedo and increased ET. The primary difference between the two cases is associated with the fact that tall shrubs protrude above the snow, thus reducing albedo year round, whereas short shrubs are completely

  15. Episodic death across species of desert shrubs.

    PubMed

    Miriti, Maria N; Rodríguez-Buriticá, Susana; Wright, S Joseph; Howe, Henry F

    2007-01-01

    Extreme events shape population and community trajectories. We report episodic mortality across common species of thousands of long-lived perennials individually tagged and monitored for 20 years in the Colorado Desert of California following severe regional drought. Demographic records from 1984 to 2004 show 15 years of virtual stasis in populations of adult shrubs and cacti, punctuated by a 55-100% die-off of six of the seven most common perennial species. In this episode, adults that experienced reduced growth in a lesser drought during 1984-1989 failed to survive the drought of 2002. The significance of this event is potentially profound because population dynamics of long-lived plants can be far more strongly affected by deaths of adults, which in deserts potentially live for centuries, than by seedling births or deaths. Differential mortality and rates of recovery during and after extreme climatic events quite likely determine the species composition of plant and associated animal communities for at least decades. The die-off recorded in this closely monitored community provides a unique window into the mechanics of this process of species decline and replacement.

  16. AIS spectra of desert shrub canopies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Murray, R.; Isaacson, D. L.; Schrumpf, B. J.; Ripple, W. J.; Lewis, A. J.

    1986-01-01

    Airborne Imaging Spectrometer (AIS) data were collected 30 August 1985 from a desert shrub community in central Oregon. Spectra from artificial targets placed on the test site and from bare soil, big sagebrush (Artemesia tridentata wyomingensis), silver sagebrush (Artemesia cana bolander), and exposed volcanic rocks were studied. Spectral data from grating position 3 (tree mode) were selected from 25 ground positions for analysis by Principal Factor Analysis (PFA). In this grating position, as many as six factors were identified as significant in contributing to spectral structure. Channels 74 through 84 (tree mode) best characterized between-class differences. Other channels were identified as nondiscriminating and as associated with such errors as excessive atmospheric absorption and grating positin changes. The test site was relatively simple with the two species (A. tridentata and A. cana) representing nearly 95% of biomass and with only two mineral backgrounds, a montmorillonitic soil and volcanic rocks. If, as in this study, six factors of spectral structure can be extracted from a single grating position from data acquired over a simple vegetation community, then AIS data must be considered rich in information-gathering potential.

  17. Dwarf Eye Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Science Teacher, 2005

    2005-01-01

    Johns Hopkins researchers at the Wilmer Eye Institute have discovered what appears to be the first human gene mutation that causes extreme farsightedness. The researchers report that nanophthalmos, Greek for "dwarf eye," is a rare, potentially blinding disorder caused by an alteration in a gene called MFRP that helps control eye growth and…

  18. White Dwarf Stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kepler, S. O.

    2014-10-01

    White dwarfs are the evolutionary endpoint for nearly 95% of all stars born in our Galaxy, the final stages of evolution of all low- and intermediate mass stars, i.e., main sequence stars with masses below (8.5± 1.5) M_{odot}, depending on metallicity of the progenitor, mass loss and core overshoot. Massive white dwarfs are intrinsically rare objects, tand produce a gap in the determination of the initial vs. final mass relation at the high mass end (e.g. Weidemann 2000 A&A, 363, 647; Kalirai et al. 2008, ApJ, 676, 594; Williams, Bolte & Koester 2009, ApJ, 693, 355). Main sequences stars with higher masses will explode as SNII (Smartt S. 2009 ARA&A, 47, 63), but the limit does depend on the metallicity of the progenitor. Massive white dwarfs are probably SNIa progenitors through accretion or merger. They are rare, being the final product of massive stars (less common) and have smaller radius (less luminous). Kepler et al. 2007 (MNRAS, 375, 1315), Kleinman et al. 2013 (ApJS, 204, 5) estimate only 1-2% white dwarfs have masses above 1 M_{odot}. The final stages of evolution after helium burning are a race between core growth and loss of the H-rich envelope in a stellar wind. When the burning shell is exposed, the star rapidly cools and burning ceases, leaving a white dwarf. As they cool down, the magnetic field freezes in, ranging from a few kilogauss to a gigagauss. Peculiar type Ia SN 2006gz, SN 2007if, SN 2009dc, SN 2003fg suggest progenitors in the range 2.4-2.8 M_{odot}, and Das U. & Mukhopadhyay B. (2012, Phys. Rev. D, 86, 042001) estimate that the Chandrasekhar limit increases to 2.3-2.6 M_{odot} for extremely high magnetic field stars, but differential rotation induced by accretion could also increase it, according to Hachisu I. et al. 2012 (ApJ, 744, 69). García-Berro et al. 2012, ApJ, 749, 25, for example, proposes double degenerate mergers are the progenitors of high-field magnetic white dwarfs. We propose magnetic fields enhance the line broadening in

  19. IMPACTS ON FLOODPLAINS BY AN INVASIVE SHRUB, BUDDLEJA DAVIDII

    EPA Science Inventory

    Despite its popularity, the ornamental, Buddleja davidii, a woody shrub of Asian origin, is considered problematic because of its ability to rapidly colonize and dominate floodplain and riparian ecosystems. Dominance during early succession may influence community dynamics and ec...

  20. Can shrub cover increase predation risk for a desert rodent?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schooley, R.L.; Sharpe, Peter B.

    1996-01-01

    Previous research indicates that predation risk may influence activity patterns, habitat partitioning, and community structure of nocturnal desert rodents. Shrub microhabitat is typically considered safer than open microhabitat for these small mammals. We investigated predation risk for Townsend's ground squirrels (Spermophilus townsendii), which are diurnal desert rodents that detect predators visually and use burrows for refuge. Our results suggested that shrub cover may increase risk for these squirrels by decreasing their ability to escape from predators. Our field experiment indicated that running speeds of juvenile squirrels were lower in shrub (Ceratoides lanata) habitat than in open areas. Shrub cover was also associated with shorter predator-detection distances (mammalian and avian) and fewer refuges (burrow entrances per hectare) than in open areas in one year but not in another. Our study demonstrated that the visual and locomotive obstruction of vegetative cover may increase predation risk for diurnal desert rodents and that elements of habitat-dependent risk may be temporally dynamic.

  1. Dwarf Dark Matter Halos

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Colín, P.; Klypin, A.; Valenzuela, O.; Gottlöber, Stefan

    2004-09-01

    We study properties of dark matter halos at high redshifts z=2-10 for a vast range of masses with the emphasis on dwarf halos with masses of 107-109 h-1 Msolar. We find that the density profiles of relaxed dwarf halos are well fitted by the Navarro, Frenk, & White (NFW) profile and do not have cores. We compute the halo mass function and the halo spin parameter distribution and find that the former is very well reproduced by the Sheth & Tormen model, while the latter is well fitted by a lognormal distribution with λ0=0.042 and σλ=0.63. We estimate the distribution of concentrations for halos in a mass range that covers 6 orders of magnitude, from 107 to 1013 h-1 Msolar, and find that the data are well reproduced by the model of Bullock et al. The extrapolation of our results to z=0 predicts that present-day isolated dwarf halos should have a very large median concentration of ~35. We measure the subhalo circular velocity functions for halos with masses that range from 4.6×109 to 1013 h-1 Msolar and find that they are similar when normalized to the circular velocity of the parent halo. Dwarf halos studied in this paper are many orders of magnitude smaller than well-studied cluster- and Milky Way-sized halos. Yet, in all respects the dwarfs are just downscaled versions of the large halos. They are cuspy and, as expected, more concentrated. They have the same spin parameter distribution and follow the same mass function that was measured for large halos.

  2. Linking Hydrology, Shrub Habitat, and Novel Wildlife in the Arctic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tape, K. D.; O'Donnell, J. A.; Christie, K.

    2014-12-01

    Warming during the 20th century changed the Arctic landscape, including aspects of vegetation, permafrost, and glaciers, but effects on wildlife have been difficult to detect. We explored linkages between components of the riparian ecosystem in Arctic Alaska since the 1970s, including streamflow timing, temperature, floodplain shrub habitat, and shrub herbivore distributions. Streamflow records showed that the peak spring snowmelt discharge has occurred 3.4 days per decade earlier, and consistent fall temperatures and snow arrival dates over the same period suggest that earlier peak discharge has prolonged the ensuing period of reduced flow in the floodplain. We used empirical correlations between cumulative summer warmth and riparian shrub height to estimate that the longer and warmer growing seasons since the 1970s have stimulated a 63% increase in the height of riparian shrubs. Earlier spring discharge and the estimated increase in riparian shrub height are consistent with the observed riparian shrub expansion in the region. Our measurements showed that snowshoe hares (Lepus americanus) require a mean riparian shrub height of at least 1.05 to 1.35 m, a threshold which our hindcasting indicates was met between 1977 and 2002. This generally coincides with observational evidence we present suggesting that snowshoe hares became established in 1977 or 1978. Similar relationships are shown for moose, which colonized the region in the 1940s. We also show that Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis) inhabited the region in 1998, probably due in part to increasing availability of snowshoe hares. The novel appearance in the Arctic during the 20th century of terrestrial herbivores such as snowshoe hares and moose in response increased shrub habitat is a contrasting terrestrial counterpart to the decline in marine mammals reliant on decreasing sea ice.

  3. A multifaceted view on the impacts of shrub encroachment.

    PubMed

    Maestre, Fernando T; Eldridge, David J; Soliveres, Santiago

    2016-07-01

    Shrub encroachment, a global phenomenon with management implications, is examined in two papers in the current issue of Applied Vegetation Science. Barbosa da Silva et al. show that encroachment simplifies herbaceous community, and Pittarello et al. illustrate how pastoral practices can restore encroached grasslands. While detrimental effects of shrub encroachment on grassland vegetation are often reported, we argue for a more holistic view when assessing this land cover change.

  4. A multifaceted view on the impacts of shrub encroachment

    PubMed Central

    Maestre, Fernando T.; Eldridge, David J.; Soliveres, Santiago

    2017-01-01

    Shrub encroachment, a global phenomenon with management implications, is examined in two papers in the current issue of Applied Vegetation Science. Barbosa da Silva et al. show that encroachment simplifies herbaceous community, and Pittarello et al. illustrate how pastoral practices can restore encroached grasslands. While detrimental effects of shrub encroachment on grassland vegetation are often reported, we argue for a more holistic view when assessing this land cover change. PMID:28239276

  5. Enhanced precipitation variability decreases grass- and increases shrub-productivity.

    PubMed

    Gherardi, Laureano A; Sala, Osvaldo E

    2015-10-13

    Although projections of precipitation change indicate increases in variability, most studies of impacts of climate change on ecosystems focused on effects of changes in amount of precipitation, overlooking precipitation variability effects, especially at the interannual scale. Here, we present results from a 6-y field experiment, where we applied sequences of wet and dry years, increasing interannual precipitation coefficient of variation while maintaining a precipitation amount constant. Increased precipitation variability significantly reduced ecosystem primary production. Dominant plant-functional types showed opposite responses: perennial-grass productivity decreased by 81%, whereas shrub productivity increased by 67%. This pattern was explained by different nonlinear responses to precipitation. Grass productivity presented a saturating response to precipitation where dry years had a larger negative effect than the positive effects of wet years. In contrast, shrubs showed an increasing response to precipitation that resulted in an increase in average productivity with increasing precipitation variability. In addition, the effects of precipitation variation increased through time. We argue that the differential responses of grasses and shrubs to precipitation variability and the amplification of this phenomenon through time result from contrasting root distributions of grasses and shrubs and competitive interactions among plant types, confirmed by structural equation analysis. Under drought conditions, grasses reduce their abundance and their ability to absorb water that then is transferred to deep soil layers that are exclusively explored by shrubs. Our work addresses an understudied dimension of climate change that might lead to widespread shrub encroachment reducing the provisioning of ecosystem services to society.

  6. Enhanced precipitation variability decreases grass- and increases shrub-productivity

    PubMed Central

    Gherardi, Laureano A.; Sala, Osvaldo E.

    2015-01-01

    Although projections of precipitation change indicate increases in variability, most studies of impacts of climate change on ecosystems focused on effects of changes in amount of precipitation, overlooking precipitation variability effects, especially at the interannual scale. Here, we present results from a 6-y field experiment, where we applied sequences of wet and dry years, increasing interannual precipitation coefficient of variation while maintaining a precipitation amount constant. Increased precipitation variability significantly reduced ecosystem primary production. Dominant plant-functional types showed opposite responses: perennial-grass productivity decreased by 81%, whereas shrub productivity increased by 67%. This pattern was explained by different nonlinear responses to precipitation. Grass productivity presented a saturating response to precipitation where dry years had a larger negative effect than the positive effects of wet years. In contrast, shrubs showed an increasing response to precipitation that resulted in an increase in average productivity with increasing precipitation variability. In addition, the effects of precipitation variation increased through time. We argue that the differential responses of grasses and shrubs to precipitation variability and the amplification of this phenomenon through time result from contrasting root distributions of grasses and shrubs and competitive interactions among plant types, confirmed by structural equation analysis. Under drought conditions, grasses reduce their abundance and their ability to absorb water that then is transferred to deep soil layers that are exclusively explored by shrubs. Our work addresses an understudied dimension of climate change that might lead to widespread shrub encroachment reducing the provisioning of ecosystem services to society. PMID:26417095

  7. Shrubs, streamflow, and the paradox of scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilcox, Bradford P.; Owens, M. Keith; Dugas, William A.; Ueckert, Darrell N.; Hart, Charles R.

    2006-10-01

    In this paper, we examine the linkage between woody plants and the water budget for three important woody plant communities in Texas, USA: saltcedar (Tamarix chinensis, Tamarix ramosissima), Ashe juniper (Juniperus ashei Buchholz), and mesquite (Prosopis glandulosa Torr. var. glandulosa). In most cases, these species are found in distinct physiographic and soil settings. Saltcedar is restricted to stream channels and floodplains; Ashe juniper is found mostly on karst limestone outcrops with shallow soils; and mesquite is found on deep soils. Because of these differences, changes in woody plant cover in each community will have a different effect on the water budget. For each type, we review the available literature and explicitly report the scale of observation (tree, stand, catchment, or landscape). A simple framework called the shrub-streamflow framework, which recognizes differences in response due to differences in physiographic setting, climate, and potential for deep drainage or subsurface flow, enables us to generalize the results. The fundamental premise of the framework is simple: for shrublands to be hydrologically sensitive to changes in woody plant cover, soil water or groundwater must be accessible to deep-rooting plants but too deep for shallow-rooting ones. Such a situation exists if groundwater is close to the surface (within 3-5 m and/or if deep drainage occurs (because of either high precipitation input or bypass flow in the soil). We argue that on an area basis, conversion of saltcedar stands to herbaceous plants in riparian regions has a much greater potential for increasing water yield than does conversion of woodlands to grasslands in upland regions where deep drainage does not occur. On upland sites where deep drainage does occur, conversion from woody to herbaceous vegetation may result in a savings of 40-80 mm year-1 of water. But such savings have been observed only up to the small-catchment scale, and until further work is done it is

  8. M Dwarf Mysteries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Henry, Todd J.; Jao, Wei-Chun; Irwin, Jonathan; Dieterich, Sergio; Finch, Charlie T.; Riedel, Adric R.; Subasavage, John P.; Winters, Jennifer; RECONS Team

    2017-01-01

    During RECONS' 17-year (so far) astrometry/photometry program at the CTIO/SMARTS 0.9m, we have observed thousands of the ubiquitous red dwarfs in the solar neighborhood. During this reconnaissance, a few mysterious characters have emerged ...The Case of the Mercurial Stars: One M dwarf has been fading steadily for more than a decade, at last measure 6% fainter than when it was first observed. Another has grown brighter by 7% over 15 years. Are these brightness changes part of extremely long stellar cycles, or something else entirely?The Case of Identical Stellar Twins that Aren't: Two M dwarfs seem at first to be identical siblings traveling together through the Galaxy. They have virtually identical spectra at optical wavelengths and identical colors throughout the VRIJHK bands. Long-term astrometry indicates that they are, indeed, at the same distance via parallax measurements, and their proper motions match precisely. Yet, one of the twins is FOUR times brighter than the other. Followup work has revealed that the brighter component is a very close spectroscopic double, but no other stars are seen. So, the mystery may be half solved, but why do the close stars remain twice as bright as their widely-separated twin?The Case of the Great Kaboom!: After more than 1000 nights of observing on the reliable 0.9m telescope, with generally routine frames reading out upon the screen, one stellar system comprised of five red dwarfs flared in stunning fashion. Of the two distinct sources, the fainter one (an unresolved double) surpassed the brightness of the brighter one (an unresolved triple), increasing by more than three full magnitudes in the V filter. Which component actually flared? Is this magnificent outburst an unusual event, or in fact typical for this system and other M dwarfs?At the AAS meeting, we hope to probe the cognoscenti who study the Sun's smaller cousins to solve these intriguing M Dwarf Mysteries.This effort has been supported by the NSF through grants

  9. Do changes in grazing pressure and the degree of shrub encroachment alter the effects of individual shrubs on understorey plant communities and soil function?

    PubMed Central

    Soliveres, Santiago; Eldridge, David J.

    2015-01-01

    Summary Shrub canopies in semi-arid environments often produce positive effects on soil fertility, and on the richness and biomass of understorey plant communities. However, both positive and negative effects of shrub encroachment on plant and soil attributes have been reported at the landscape-level. The contrasting results between patch- and landscape-level effects in shrublands could be caused by differences in the degree of shrub encroachment or grazing pressure, both of which are likely to reduce the ability of individual shrubs to ameliorate their understorey environment. We examined how grazing and shrub encroachment (measured as landscape-level shrub cover) influence patch-level effects of shrubs on plant density, biomass and similarity in species composition between shrub understories and open areas, and on soil stability, nutrient cycling, and infiltration in two semi-arid Australian woodlands. Individual shrubs had consistently positive effects on all plant and soil variables (average increase of 23% for all variables). These positive patch-level effects persisted with increasing shrub cover up to our maximum of 50% cover. Heavy grazing negatively affected most of the variables studied (average decline of 11%). It also altered, for some variables, how individual shrubs affected their sub-canopy environment with increasing shrub cover. Thus for species density, biomass and soil infiltration, the positive effect of individual shrubs with increasing shrub cover diminished under heavy grazing. Synthesis Our study refines predictions of the effects of woody encroachment on ecosystem structure and functioning by showing that heavy grazing, rather than differences in shrub cover, explains the contrasting effects on ecosystem structure and function between individual shrubs and those in dense aggregations. We also discuss how species-specific traits of the encroaching species, such as their height or its ability to fix N, might influence the relationship between

  10. White Dwarf Mass Distribution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kepler, S. O.; Koester, D.; Romero, A. D.; Ourique, G.; Pelisoli, I.

    2017-03-01

    We present the mass distribution for all S/N ≥ 15 DA white dwarfs detected in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey up to Data Release 12 in 2015, fitted with Koester models for ML2/α=0.8 (Teff≥ 10000 K), and for DBs with S/N ≥ 10, fitted with ML2/α=1.25, for Teff >16 000 K. These mass distributions are for logg≥6.5 stars, i.e., excluding the Extremely Low Mass white dwarfs. We also present the mass distributions corrected by volume with the 1/Vmax approach, for stars brighter than g=19. Both distributions have a maximum at M=0.624 M ⊙ but very distinct shapes.

  11. Solidification of carbon-oxygen white dwarfs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schatzman, E.

    1982-01-01

    The internal structure of white dwarfs is discussed. Highly correlated plasmas are reviewed. Implications for phase separation in the core of cooling white dwarfs are considered. The consequences for evolution of white dwarfs are addressed.

  12. Water storage capacity, stemflow and water funneling in Mediterranean shrubs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garcia-Estringana, P.; Alonso-Blázquez, N.; Alegre, J.

    2010-08-01

    SummaryTo predict water losses and other hydrological and ecological features of a given vegetation, its water storage capacity and stemflow need to be accurately determined. Vast areas of the Mediterranean region are occupied by shrublands yet there is scarce data available on their rainwater interception capacity. In this study, simulated rainfall tests were conducted in controlled conditions on nine Mediterranean shrubs of varying anatomic and morphological features to determine water storage capacity, stemflow and the funneling ratio. After assessing correlations between these hydrological variables and the biometric characteristics of the shrubs, we compared two methods of determining storage capacity: rainfall simulation and immersion. Mean water storage capacity was 1.02 mm (0.35-3.24 mm), stemflow was 16% (3.8-26.4%) and the funneling ratio was 104 (30-260). Per unit biomass, mean storage capacity was 0.66 ml g -1 and ranged from 0.23 ml g -1 for Cistus ladanifer to 2.26 ml g -1 for Lavandula latifolia. Despite their small size, shrubs may generate high water losses to the atmosphere when they form dense communities and this can have a significant impact in regions where water is scarce. When considered the whole shrubs in absolute terms (ml per plant), water storage capacity and stemflow were correlated to biomass and the dendrometric characteristics of the shrubs, yet in relative terms (expressed per surface area unit or as %), anatomic features such as pubescence, branch rigidity or leaf insertion angle emerged as determining factors. The use of a simple procedure to assess storage capacity was inefficient. The immersion method underestimated storage capacity to a different extent for each species. Some shrubs returned high stemflow values typical of their adaptation to the semiarid climate. In contrast, other shrubs seem to have structures that promote stemflow yet have developed other drought-adaptation mechanisms. In this report, we discuss the

  13. Local Universe Dwarf Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carignan, Claude

    2015-08-01

    One of the outstanding problems in cosmology is addressing the "small-scale crisis" and understanding structure formation at the smallest scales. Standard Lambda Cold Dark Matter cosmological simulations of Milky Way-size DM halos predict many more DM sub-halos than the number of dwarf galaxies observed. This is the so-called Missing Satellites Problem. The most popular interpretation of the Missing Satellites Problem is that the smallest dark matter halos in the universe are extremely inefficient at forming stars. The virialized extent of the Milky Way's halo should contain ~500 satellites, while only ˜100 satellites and dwarfs are observed in the whole Local Group. Despite the large amount of theoretical work and new optical observations, the discrepancy, even if reduced, still persists between observations and hierarchical models, regardless of the model parameters. It may be possible to find those isolated ultra-faint missing dwarf galaxies via their neutral gas component, which is one of the goals we are pursuing with the SKA precursor KAT-7 in South Africa, and soon with the SKA pathfinder MeerKAT.

  14. Convection in White Dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Provencal, Judith L.; Shipman, H.; Dalessio, J.; M, M.

    2012-01-01

    Convection is one of the largest sources of theoretical uncertainty in our understanding of stellar physics. Current studies of convective energy transport are based on the mixing length theory. Originally intended to depict turbulent flows in engineering situations, MLT enjoys moderate success in describing stellar convection. However, problems arising from MLT's incompleteness are apparent in studies ranging from determinations of the ages of massive stars, to understanding the structure F and early A stars, to predicting the pulsation periods of solar stars, to understanding the atmosphere of Titan. As an example for white dwarfs, Bergeron et al. (1995) show that model parameters such as flux, line profiles, energy distribution, color indices, and equivalent widths are extremely sensitive to the assumed MLT parameterization. The authors find systematic uncertainties ranging from 25% for effective temperatures to 11% for mass and radius. The WET is engaged in a long term project to empirically determine the physical properties of convection in the atmospheres of pulsating white dwarfs. The technique, outlined by Montgomery et al. (2010), uses information from nonlinear (non-sinusoidal) pulse shapes of the target star to empirically probe the physical properties of its convection zone. Approximately two thirds of all white dwarfs show nonlinear characteristics in their light curves. We present current results from WET targets in 2008-2011.

  15. Permafrost response to increasing Arctic shrub abundance depends on the relative influence of shrubs on local soil cooling versus large-scale climate warming

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lawrence, David M.; Swenson, Sean C.

    2011-10-01

    Deciduous shrub abundance is increasing across the Arctic in response to climatic warming. In a recent field manipulation experiment in which shrubs were removed from a plot and compared to a control plot with shrubs, Blok et al (2010 Glob. Change Biol. 16 1296-305) found that shrubs protect the ground through shading, resulting in a ~ 9% shallower active layer thickness (ALT) under shrubs compared to grassy-tundra, which led them to argue that continued Arctic shrub expansion could mitigate future permafrost thaw. We utilize the Community Land Model (CLM4) coupled to the Community Atmosphere Model (CAM4) to evaluate this hypothesis. CLM4 simulates shallower ALT (~- 11 cm) under shrubs, consistent with the field manipulation study. However, in an idealized pan-Arctic + 20% shrub area experiment, atmospheric heating, driven mainly by surface albedo changes related to protrusion of shrub stems above the spring snowpack, leads to soil warming and deeper ALT (~+ 10 cm). Therefore, if climate feedbacks are considered, shrub expansion may actually increase rather than decrease permafrost vulnerability. When we account for blowing-snow redistribution from grassy-tundra to shrubs, shifts in snowpack distribution in low versus high shrub area simulations counter the climate warming impact, resulting in a grid cell mean ALT that is unchanged. These results reinforce the need to consider vegetation dynamics and blowing-snow processes in the permafrost thaw model projections.

  16. The Geomorphic Effectiveness of a Woody Shrub

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manners, R.; Schmidt, J. C.; Wheaton, J. M.

    2010-12-01

    Vegetation plays a fundamental role in controlling channel form and influencing channel processes. Experimental work has shown that stem density, stem spacing, relative submergence, and stem flexibility are key indicators of the effectiveness of vegetation in altering the flow field. These parameters are likely to be species dependent and change over time as vegetation grows, dies back and is replaced by late successional species. Thus, the role of vegetation is highly variable in both space and time. Capturing this variability is essential in understanding how vegetation controls channel processes. Here, we investigate the spatial and temporal variability of stand characteristics (i.e. stem density and spacing) for the non-native riparian shrub, Tamarix spp. In the Colorado River basin, Tamarix dominates large portions of the riparian corridor. Tamarix is capable of establishing rapidly and in dense stands and as such been implicated in enhancing channel changes observed during the last century. However, questions relating to Tamarix’s role relative to other pervasive environmental changes necessitate a robust way to capture the effectiveness of Tamarix in altering the flow field and inducing deposition. We focus on the stand structure of aging Tamarix stands in order to relate Tamarix life-history to hydrodynamic roughness. High resolution terrestrial laser scans (TLS) were collected for Tamarix patches (10-15 m2) on different geomorphic surfaces (i.e. gravel bar, disconnected floodplain) and ages (5-60 years). Stem frontal area at varying depths was calculated from the scans over the patch and for the patch as a whole. We used Telemac 2D to evaluate how the stem density and spacing influence flow characteristics, such as drag on the stems and Froude number. To do this, the representative stem density and spacing was translated into cylindrical elements on a flat (i.e no topography) mesh. Elevation above the channel influences stand density. For example, a 20

  17. Shrubs and Runoff in Semiarid Landscapes: Whats the Linkage?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilcox, B. P.; Owens, M. K.; Knight, R.; Lyons, R. K.

    2001-12-01

    Here we examine linkage between streamflow and shrub cover in semiarid landscapes with a focus on the extensive Texas rangelands covered by mesquite and juniper. The conclusions drawn are consistent with results from field studies and with our understanding of runoff processes from rangelands. Whether and how shrub control will affect streamflow depends on shrub characteristics, precipitation, soils, and geology. Precipitation is perhaps the most fundamental of these factors: there is little if any real potential for increasing streamflow where annual precipitation is below about 500 mm. For areas in which precipitation is sufficient, an excellent indicator that there is potential for increasing streamflow through shrub control is that base flow is an important component of streamflow. Another key indicator is shallow soils underlain by fractured parent material; under such conditions, increased streamflows are possible mainly because water that would otherwise be lost through interception by the canopy instead moves into the soil and quickly travels beyond the root zone. Conversely, where soils are deep there is little evidence that streamflow can be significantly increased by reducing brush cover. Results from a 10 year small watershed study where juniper was selectively removed in the Edwards plateau region of Texas will be summarized in this presentation. In assessing the potential for shrub control to increase streamflow, the runoff generation process should be explicitly identified. Areas in which Horton overland flow is the primary runoff mechanism offer little potential for increasing streamflow via vegetation management.

  18. Deceleration efficiencies of shrub windbreaks in a wind tunnel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Xiaoxu; Zou, Xueyong; Zhou, Na; Zhang, Chunlai; Shi, Sha

    2015-03-01

    Artemisia and Salix are dominant shrub species for windbreaks in arid areas of China, and they show similar features to shrubs in other arid areas of the world. We compared the mean velocity fields and shelter effects of two shrub windbreaks with different layouts. For a single plant of Artemisia, the higher the free airflow velocity is, the more the wind velocity around two sides of the plant increases. The velocity gradient around a single plant of Salix is smaller than that around an Artemisia plant due to the difference in the plant shapes. Seven new velocity zones in the horizontal direction appear when airflow passes through an Artemisia windbreak, including four deceleration zones and three acceleration zones. The mean velocity field that is affected by a Salix windbreak can be divided into a deceleration zone in the front, an acceleration zone above, a vortex zone behind and a restoration zone downwind of the vortex zone. Shelter effects of the shrub windbreaks vary with the wind velocity and are influenced by the construct of the windbreaks. Shrub windbreaks that have a complex construction have better shelter effects than simple ones. The shelter effects of plant windbreaks are also influenced by the growth features of the plants. Considering the plant characteristics and the shelter effects of Salix and Artemisia windbreaks, it is optimal to plant these two windbreaks together in a sand-control system. This research is intended to be useful for sand movement control in arid areas.

  19. [Soil moisture dynamics under artificial Caragana microphylla shrub].

    PubMed

    Alamusa; Jiang, Deming; Fan, Shixiang; Luo, Yongming

    2002-12-01

    Applying the methods of deducing time series from vegetation space alignment, we analyzed the spatial and temporal variation features of soil moisture under artificial Caragana microphylla shrubs built in 1984, 1987, 1995, 1999. The results showed that affected by mechanical composition of mobile sandy dunes, the soil of sandy land was mainly composed of sandy particle, and the particles of > 0.01 mm were accounted for 97%. The withered moisture was 1.55%. The field waterhold capacity was 5.5%, and the available moisture storage was 3.95%. With the increase of the dominance of fix-sand vegetation, the moisture content of soil under artificial Caragana microphylla shrubs was decreased. The soil moisture of vegetation built in 1984 was lower than that built in 1999. The soil moisture conditions of four stages vegetation were continued depressing from April to June in a year, the lowest point presenced in June, and then gradually increased from July to October. The vertical change of soil moisture showed the tendency of increasing with soil depth. The soil moisture decreased by the degrees of early built vegetation (1984, 1987). Especially in 70 cm soil depth, the moisture content of soil decreased obviously. Caragana microphylla shrubs absorbed water and aggravated the shortage of soil moisture content near the root system, which affected the component of vegetation in Caragana microphylla shrubs. The species of herbaceous plants and annual plants increased during the growth of Caragana microphylla shrub.

  20. Satellite dwarf galaxies in a hierarchical universe: the prevalence of dwarf-dwarf major mergers

    SciTech Connect

    Deason, Alis; Wetzel, Andrew; Garrison-Kimmel, Shea

    2014-10-20

    Mergers are a common phenomenon in hierarchical structure formation, especially for massive galaxies and clusters, but their importance for dwarf galaxies in the Local Group remains poorly understood. We investigate the frequency of major mergers between dwarf galaxies in the Local Group using the ELVIS suite of cosmological zoom-in dissipationless simulations of Milky Way- and M31-like host halos. We find that ∼10% of satellite dwarf galaxies with M {sub star} > 10{sup 6} M {sub ☉} that are within the host virial radius experienced a major merger of stellar mass ratio closer than 0.1 since z = 1, with a lower fraction for lower mass dwarf galaxies. Recent merger remnants are biased toward larger radial distance and more recent virial infall times, because most recent mergers occurred shortly before crossing within the virial radius of the host halo. Satellite-satellite mergers also occur within the host halo after virial infall, catalyzed by the large fraction of dwarf galaxies that fell in as part of a group. The merger fraction doubles for dwarf galaxies outside of the host virial radius, so the most distant dwarf galaxies in the Local Group are the most likely to have experienced a recent major merger. We discuss the implications of these results on observable dwarf merger remnants, their star formation histories, the gas content of mergers, and massive black holes in dwarf galaxies.

  1. Soil Microbial Activity Provides Insight to Carbon Cycling in Shrub Ecotones of Sub-Arctic Sweden

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marek, E.; Kashi, N. N.; Chen, J.; Hobbie, E. A.; Schwan, M. R.; Varner, R. K.

    2015-12-01

    Shrubs are expanding in Arctic and sub-Arctic regions due to rising atmospheric temperatures. Microbial activity increases as growing temperatures cause permafrost warming and subsequent thaw, leading to a greater resource of soil nutrients enabling shrub growth. Increased carbon inputs from shrubs is predicted to result in faster carbon turnover by microbial decomposition. Further understanding of microbial activity underneath shrubs could uncover how microbes and soil processes interact to promote shrub expansion and carbon cycling. To address how higher soil carbon input from shrubs influences decomposition, soil samples were taken across a heath, shrub, and forest ecotone gradient at two sites near Abikso, Sweden. Samples were analyzed for soluble carbon and nitrogen, microbial abundance, and microbial activity of chitinase, glucosidase, and phosphatase to reflect organic matter decomposition and availability of nitrogen, carbon, and phosphate respectively. Chitinase activity positively correlated with shrub cover, suggesting microbial demands for nitrogen increase with higher shrub cover. Glucosidase activity negatively correlated with shrub cover and soluble carbon, suggesting decreased microbial demand for carbon as shrub cover and carbon stores increase. Lower glucosidase activity in areas with high carbon input from shrubs implies that microbes are decomposing carbon less readily than carbon is being put into the soil. Increasing soil carbon stores in shrub covered areas can lead to shrubs becoming a net carbon sink and a negative feedback to changing climate.

  2. Kinematics of faint white dwarfs.

    PubMed

    Luyten, W J

    1978-10-01

    An analysis has been made for solar motion for 128 very faint white dwarfs of color class b or a. While about 40% of these stars may be high-velocity objects, it seems definitely indicated that the luminosity of all of them is considerably lower than that for the "normal" white dwarf of the same color.

  3. Hybrid dwarfness in crosses between wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) and rye (Secale cereale L.): a new look at an old phenomenon.

    PubMed

    Tikhenko, N; Rutten, T; Tsvetkova, N; Voylokov, A; Börner, A

    2015-03-01

    The existence of hybrid dwarfs from intraspecific crosses in wheat (Triticum aestivum) was described 100 years ago, and the genetics underlying hybrid dwarfness are well understood. In this study, we report a dwarf phenotype in interspecific hybrids between wheat and rye (Secale cereale). We identified two rye lines that produce hybrid dwarfs with wheat and have none of the hitherto known hybrid dwarfing genes. Genetic analyses revealed that both rye lines carry a single allelic gene responsible for the dwarf phenotype. This gene was designated Hdw-R1 (Hybrid dwarf-R1). Application of gibberellic acid (GA3 ) to both intraspecific (wheat-wheat) and interspecific (wheat-rye) hybrids showed that hybrid dwarfness cannot be overcome by treatment with this phytohormone. Histological analysis of shoot apices showed that wheat-rye hybrids with the dwarf phenotype at 21 and 45 days after germination failed to develop further. Shoot apices of dwarf plants did not elongate, did not form new primordia and had a dome-shaped appearance in the seed. The possible relationship between hybrid dwarfness and the genes responsible for the transition from vegetative to generative growth stage is discussed.

  4. Tidal Dwarf Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Houck, James R.; Higdon, Sarah

    2004-09-01

    Tidal Dwarf Galaxies (TDG's) are formed from material stripped from the disks of spiral galaxies, which are undergoing tidal interactions with a nearby companion. These galaxies provide important clues to our understanding of galaxy formation, evolution and cosmic recycling. Using the IRS we will measure the star formation activity in 6 TDG candidates. We will measure the ionization state ( [NeII] 12.8 um, [NeIII] 15.6 um and [NeV] 14.3um and [OIV] 25.9 um), the density in the ionized gas ([SIII] 18.7um/33.5um), the PAH fractions at 5.5-9um and 11-12.2um and possibly (optimistic here!) molecular hydrogen emission form PDRs at H2 (S0) 28um and H2 (S1) at 17um. In addition to the IRS observations we will map both the Guitar and Stephan's Quintet with IRAC. This will enable us to compare the PAH fraction in the dwarf galaxy to that of its parent. Similarly we will compare our observation of the proposed TDG at the southern tip of NGC 4038 with the GT observations of the central region of the Antennae. This program compliments two existing GT programmes: 1) the high-Z program - these observations enable us to observe in fine detail the nearby/present day analogs of galaxy formation in the early universe. 2) Blue Compact Dwarf programme - On first inpsection BCD's and TDG's appear the same: BCDs are similar in size to TDG's, but TDG's may not have a large dark matter halo component (affecting the long term stability of an object) and BCD's typically have a much lower metallicity. We will be able to compare the star formation activity in terms of the ionization state and PAH fraction in the two galaxy types.

  5. Environmental Limits of Tall Shrubs in Alaska's Arctic National Parks.

    PubMed

    Swanson, David K

    2015-01-01

    We sampled shrub canopy volume (height times area) and environmental factors (soil wetness, soil depth of thaw, soil pH, mean July air temperature, and typical date of spring snow loss) on 471 plots across five National Park Service units in northern Alaska. Our goal was to determine the environments where tall shrubs thrive and use this information to predict the location of future shrub expansion. The study area covers over 80,000 km2 and has mostly tundra vegetation. Large canopy volumes were uncommon, with volumes over 0.5 m3/m2 present on just 8% of plots. Shrub canopy volumes were highest where mean July temperatures were above 10.5°C and on weakly acid to neutral soils (pH of 6 to 7) with deep summer thaw (>80 cm) and good drainage. On many sites, flooding helped maintain favorable soil conditions for shrub growth. Canopy volumes were highest where the typical snow loss date was near 20 May; these represent sites that are neither strongly wind-scoured in the winter nor late to melt from deep snowdrifts. Individual species varied widely in the canopy volumes they attained and their response to the environmental factors. Betula sp. shrubs were the most common and quite tolerant of soil acidity, cold July temperatures, and shallow thaw depths, but they did not form high-volume canopies under these conditions. Alnus viridis formed the largest canopies and was tolerant of soil acidity down to about pH 5, but required more summer warmth (over 12°C) than the other species. The Salix species varied widely from S. pulchra, tolerant of wet and moderately acid soils, to S. alaxensis, requiring well-drained soils with near neutral pH. Nearly half of the land area in ARCN has mean July temperatures of 10.5 to 12.5°C, where 2°C of warming would bring temperatures into the range needed for all of the potential tall shrub species to form large canopies. However, limitations in the other environmental factors would probably prevent the formation of large shrub canopies

  6. Seeing Baby Dwarf Galaxies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2009-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site] [figure removed for brevity, see original site] [figure removed for brevity, see original site] Visible/DSS Click on image for larger version Ultraviolet/GALEX Click on image for larger version Poster Version Click on image for larger version

    The unique ultraviolet vision of NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer reveals, for the first time, dwarf galaxies forming out of nothing more than pristine gas likely leftover from the early universe. Dwarf galaxies are relatively small collections of stars that often orbit around larger galaxies like our Milky Way.

    The forming dwarf galaxies shine in the far ultraviolet spectrum, rendered as blue in the call-out on the right hand side of this image. Near ultraviolet light, also obtained by the Galaxy Evolution Explorer, is displayed in green, and visible light from the blue part of the spectrum here is represented by red. The clumps (in circles) are distinctively blue, indicating they are primarily detected in far ultraviolet light.

    The faint blue overlay traces the outline of the Leo Ring, a huge cloud of hydrogen and helium that orbits around two massive galaxies in the constellation Leo (left panel). The cloud is thought likely to be a primordial object, an ancient remnant of material that has remained relatively unchanged since the very earliest days of the universe. Identified about 25 years ago by radio waves, the ring cannot be seen in visible light.

    Only a portion of the Leo Ring has been imaged in the ultraviolet, but this section contains the telltale ultraviolet signature of recent massive star formation within this ring of pristine gas. Astronomers have previously only seen dwarf galaxies form out of gas that has already been cycled through a galaxy and enriched with metals elements heavier than helium produced as stars evolve.

    The visible data come from the Digitized Sky Survey of the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, Md. The

  7. Dwarfs in Coma Cluster

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2007-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site] Click on image for larger poster version

    This false-color mosaic of the central region of the Coma cluster combines infrared and visible-light images to reveal thousands of faint objects (green). Follow-up observations showed that many of these objects, which appear here as faint green smudges, are dwarf galaxies belonging to the cluster. Two large elliptical galaxies, NGC 4889 and NGC 4874, dominate the cluster's center. The mosaic combines visible-light data from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (color coded blue) with long- and short-wavelength infrared views (red and green, respectively) from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope.

  8. White Dwarf Calibration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Colina, Luis

    1994-01-01

    As a result of last November calibration workshop, all parties agreed that the HST should be switched to the WD basis for absolute fluxes. This proposal implements that decision. A measurement of the absolute sensitivity of the FOS detectors will be performed using theoretical pure hydrogen model atmosphere calculations for three white dwarfs. The high resolution gratings will be used in the 1 arcsec aperture. A four stage peakup of the standard star provides centering in the aperture. Observations are requested for fall 94 with repeated observations about two months after.

  9. Sowing the Seeds of Planets? (Artist's Concept)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site] Planet Clumps and Crystals around Brown Dwarfs

    This artist's concept shows microscopic crystals in the dusty disk surrounding a brown dwarf, or 'failed star.' The crystals, made up of a green mineral found on Earth called olivine, are thought to help seed the formation of planets.

    NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope detected the tiny crystals circling around five brown dwarfs, the cooler and smaller cousins of stars. Though crystallized minerals have been seen in space before -- in comets and around other stars -- the discovery represents the first time the little gem-like particles have been spotted around confirmed brown dwarfs.

    Astronomers believe planets form out of disks of dust that circle young brown dwarfs and stars. Over time, the various minerals making up the disks crystallize and begin to clump together. Eventually, the clumps collide and stick, building up mass like snowmen until planets are born.

    About the Graph: Planet Clumps and Crystals around Brown Dwarfs The graph of data from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope shows the spectra (middle four lines) of dusty disks around four brown dwarfs, or 'failed stars,' located 520 light-years away in the Chamaeleon constellation. The data suggest that the dust in these disks is crystallizing and clumping together in what may be the birth of planets.

    Spectra are created by breaking light apart into its basic components, like a prism turning sunlight into a rainbow. Their bumps represent the 'fingerprints' or signatures of different minerals.

    Here, the light green vertical bands highlight the spectral fingerprints of crystals made up primarily of a green silicate mineral found on Earth called olivine. As the graph illustrates, three of the four brown dwarfs possess these microscopic gem-like particles. For comparison, the spectra of dust between stars (top) and the comet Hale-Bopp (bottom) are shown. The comet has the tiny

  10. Demographic patterns of the shrub Ceanothus megacarpus in an old stand of chaparral in the Santa Monica Mountains

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Montygierd-Loyba, T. M.; Keeley, J.E.; DeVries, J.J.

    1986-01-01

    Wildfires have had a major influence on the structural and functional adaptations that have evolved in Mediterranean-type ecosystems. Some chaparral shrubs sprout after fires while others produce serotinous cones or seeds refractory to germination until they are cued by a fire. Ceanothus megacarpus is a sclerophylous shrub commonly found in California in either pure of mixed stands which does not survive fires but whose seeds germinate following a fire. Because in recent decades man-made fires have become frequent, few older stands remain, and they have been described as "decadent" or "senescent." Since data on older chaparral stands are scarce, a stand of chaparral in the Santa Monica Mountains of southern California, which last burned in 1929 was studied in an effort to elucidate the survivorship patterns and community structure of Ceanothus megacarpus as it ages. Ceanothus is responsible for 68 percent of the basal coverage at this mixed stand, and one-eighth of the Ceanothus were found to be dead. Over 130 such dead individuals were cut at ground level and aged by ring counts to establish the survivorship curve for this species in this chaparral community in the absence of fires.

  11. Variability in leaf morphology and photosynthetic responses of arctic woody shrubs to warming and shifts in snow induced thermal insulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flower, C. E.; Pereyra, G.; Welker, J. M.; Trumbore, S.; Gonzalez-Meler, M. A.

    2013-12-01

    Permafrost warming in the climate sensitive Arctic tundra has been linked to shifts in vegetation, from tussock dominated to tussock/shrub systems. This vegetation shift has the potential to not only impact the abiotic conditions, but also the energy balance and biogeochemical cycling of these systems; as plant assimilation, respiration, C allocation, and rooting depth may differ between plant functional groups. We assessed leaf morphology and constructed light response curves at ambient (400 ppm) and elevated (800 ppm) CO2 concentrations to assess photosynthetic responses of dwarf birch and diamond-leaf willow to a natural and induced simulated warming experiment at the Toolik Field Station in Alaska. Results indicate a positive correlation between summer soil thaw depth and leaf surface area indicating hydrological responses of both species. Additionally, leaf area was higher in warmed plots relative to non warmed plots in both the snow addition and the control treatments. Furthermore, we found that diamond-leaf willow exhibits elevated assimilation rates relative to dwarf birch. Both species exhibited similar photosynthetic responses to elevated CO2 increasing assimilation by ~34%. These responses highlight the forcing imposed by woody vegetation in arctic regions with the potential to increase net primary production in addition to positive feedbacks on winter snow depth, soil temperature, and moisture.

  12. White Dwarf Stars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1999-01-01

    Peering deep inside a cluster of several hundred thousand stars, NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has uncovered the oldest burned-out stars in our Milky Way Galaxy, giving astronomers a fresh reading on the age of the universe.

    Located in the globular cluster M4, these small, burned-out stars -- called white dwarfs -- are about 12 to 13 billion years old. By adding the one billion years it took the cluster to form after the Big Bang, astronomers found that the age of the white dwarfs agrees with previous estimates that the universe is 13 to 14 billion years old.

    The images, including some taken by Hubble's Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2, are available online at

    http://oposite.stsci.edu/pubinfo/pr/2002/10/ or

    http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/images/wfpc .

    The camera was designed and built by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.

    In the top panel, a ground-based observatory snapped a panoramic view of the entire cluster, which contains several hundred thousand stars within a volume of 10 to 30 light-years across. The Kitt Peak National Observatory's .9-meter telescope took this picture in March 1995. The box at left indicates the region observed by the Hubble telescope.

    The Hubble telescope studied a small region of the cluster. A section of that region is seen in the picture at bottom left. A sampling of an even smaller region is shown at bottom right. This region is only about one light-year across. In this smaller region, Hubble pinpointed a number of faint white dwarfs. The blue circles indicate the dwarfs. It took nearly eight days of exposure time over a 67-day period to find these extremely faint stars.

    Globular clusters are among the oldest clusters of stars in the universe. The faintest and coolest white dwarfs within globular clusters can yield a globular cluster's age. Earlier Hubble observations showed that the first stars formed less than 1 billion years after the universe's birth in the big bang. So, finding the

  13. Cold temperature increases winter fruit removal rate of a bird-dispersed shrub.

    SciTech Connect

    Charles Kwit; Douglas J. Levey; Cathryn H. Greenberg; Scott F. Pearson; John P. McCarty; Sarah Sargent

    2004-01-10

    Kwit, C., D. J. Levey; C. H. Greenberg, S. F. Pearson, J.P. McCarty, and S. Sargent. Cold temperature increases winter fruit removal rate of a bird-dispersed shrub. Oecologia. 139:30-34. Abstract: We tested the hypothesis that winter removal rates of fruits of wax myrtle, Myrica cerifera, are higher in colder winters. Over a 9-year period, we monitored M. cerifera fruit crops in 13 0.1-ha study plots in South Carolina, U.S.A. Peak ripeness occurred in November, whereas peak removal occurred in the coldest months, December and January. Mean time to fruit removal within study plots was positively correlated with mean winter temperatures, thereby supporting our hypothesis. This result, combined with the generally low availability of winter arthropods, suggests that fruit abundance may play a role in determining winter survivorship and distribution of permanent resident and short-distance migrant birds. From the plant's perspective, it demonstrates inter-annual variation in the temporal component of seed dispersal, with possible consequences for post-dispersal seed and seedling ecology.

  14. Seed germination of Sierra Nevada postfire chaparral species

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Keeley, Jon E.; McGinnis, Thomas W.; Bollens, Kim A.

    2005-01-01

    The California chaparral community has a rich flora of species with different mechanisms for cuing germination to postfire conditions. Here we report further germination experiments that elucidate the response of several widespread shrub species whose germination response was not clear and include other species from the Sierra Nevada, which have not previously been included in germination studies. The shrubs Adenostoma fasciculatum and Eriodictyon crassifolium and the postfire annualMentzelia dispersa exhibited highly significant germination in response to smoke treatments, with some enhanced germination in response to heating as well. The shrubs Fremontodendron californicum and Malacothamnus fremontii were stimulated only by heat-shock treatments. Seeds buried in the soil for one year exhibited substantially higher germination for controls and most treatments. In the case of two postfire annuals, Mimulus bolanderi and M. gracilipes, germination of fresh seed was significantly greater with smoke or heating but after soil storage, over two-thirds of the control seeds germinated and treatment effects were not significant. These two annuals are generally restricted to postfire conditions and it is suggested that control germination of soil-stored seed may be a light-response (which was not tested here) as previously reported for another chaparral species in that genus.

  15. The Invasive Shrub, Buddleja davidii (Butterfl y Bush)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Buddleja davidii Franchet (Synonym. Buddleia davidii; common name Butterfly bush) is a perennial, semi-deciduous shrub or small multi-stemmed tree that is resident in gardens and disturbed areas in temperate locations worldwide. Since its introduction to the United Kingdom from c...

  16. [Characteristics of stemflow for typical alpine shrubs in Qilian Mountain].

    PubMed

    Liu, Zhang-wen; Chen, Ren-sheng; Song, Yao-xuan

    2011-08-01

    Taking the typical alpine shrubs Potentilla fruticosa, Salix cupularis, Hippophae rhamnoides, and Caragana jubata in Qilian Mountain as test objects, a field investigation from June 1 to October 31, 2010 was conducted on the variation characteristics of the shrub stemflow, and analyzed the affecting effects of rainfall intensity and canopy structure morphology. The stemflow generated when the rainfall in early period was 2.1 mm, with an average of 3.4%, 3.2%, 8.0%, and 4.2% of the gross rainfall for P. fruticosa, S. cupularis, H. rhamnoides, and C. jubata, respectively. There was a significant positive linear correlation between the stemflow and rainfall intensity. With increasing rainfall, the stemflow percentage showed a trend of increase-decrease-increase. Stemflow played an important role in supplying water to the shrub rhizosphere, and the average funneling ratio was 59, 30, 110, and 49 for P. fruticosa, S. cupularis, H. rhamnoides, and C. jubata, respectively. The stemflow percentage had a significant exponential relationship with the maximum rain intensity in 10 minutes (I10). When the I10 was more than 6.0 mm x h(-1), the stemflow of H. rhamnoides and C. jubata showed a persistently increasing trend, while that of P. fruticosa and S. cupularis tended to be stable. Canopy structure morphology had complicated effects on the stemflow. In the same rainfall intensities, the height and crown projection area of the shrubs were the important factors affecting the generation of stemflow.

  17. Siliceous Shrubs in Yellowstone's Hot Springs: Implications for Exobiological Investigations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guidry, S. A.; Chafetz, H. S.

    2003-01-01

    Potential relict hot springs have been identified on Mars and, using the Earth as an analog, Martian hot springs are postulated to be an optimal locality for recognizing preserved evidence of extraterrestrial life. Distinctive organic and inorganic biomarkers are necessary to recognize preserved evidence of life in terrestrial and extraterrestrial hot spring accumulations. Hot springs in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, U.S.A., contain a wealth of information about primitive microbial life and associated biosignatures that may be useful for future exobiological investigations. Numerous siliceous hot springs in Yellowstone contain abundant, centimeter-scale, spinose precipitates of opaline silica (opal-A). Although areally extensive in siliceous hot spring discharge channel facies, these spinose forms have largely escaped attention. These precipitates referred to as shrubs, consist of porous aggregates of spinose opaline silica that superficially resemble miniature woody plants, i.e., the term shrubs. Shrubs in carbonate precipitating systems have received considerable attention, and represent naturally occurring biotically induced precipitates. As such, shrubs have great potential as hot spring environmental indicators and, more importantly, proxies for pre-existing microbial life.

  18. Plant Identification Characteristics for Deciduous Trees & Shrubs. Lesson Plans.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burkholder, Kathy

    This manual contains a group of lesson plans designed for use with a slide series (not included here). Its purpose is to introduce students to the basic concepts and terminology used in the identification of deciduous trees and shrubs. The manual is composed of 12 lesson plans. The first lesson is an introduction to plant identification. The…

  19. Foliar uptake of fog in coastal California shrub species.

    PubMed

    Emery, Nathan C

    2016-11-01

    Understanding plant water uptake is important in ecosystems that experience periodic drought. In many Mediterranean-type climates like coastal California, plants are subject to significant drought and wildfire disturbance. During the dry summer months, coastal shrub species are often exposed to leaf wetting from overnight fog events. This study sought to determine whether foliar uptake of fog occurs in shrub species and how this uptake affects physiology and fuel condition. In a controlled greenhouse experiment, dominant California shrub species were exposed to isotopically labeled fog water and plant responses were measured. Potted plants were covered at the base to prevent root uptake. The deuterium label was detected in the leaves of four out of five species and in the stems of two of the species. While there was a minimal effect of foliar water uptake on live fuel moisture, several species had lower xylem tension and greater photosynthetic rates after overnight fog treatments, especially Salvia leucophylla. Coastal fog may provide a moisture source for many species during the summer drought, but the utilization of this water source may vary based on foliar morphology, phenology and plant water balance. From this study, it appears that drought-deciduous species (Artemisia californica and Salvia leucophylla) benefit more from overnight fog events than evergreen species (Adenostoma fasciculatum, Baccharis pilularis and Ceanothus megacarpus). This differential response to fog exposure among California shrub species may affect species distributions and physiological tolerances under future climate scenarios.

  20. PROPERTIES OF THE COOLEST DWARFS

    SciTech Connect

    SAUMON, DIDIER; LEGGETT, SANDY K.; FREEDMAN, RICHARD S.; GEBALLE, THOMAS R.; GOLIMOWSKI, DAVID A.; LODIEU, NICOLAS; MARLEY, MARK S.; STEPHENS, DENISE; PINFIELD, DAVID J.; WARREN, STEPHEN J.

    2007-01-18

    Eleven years after the discovery of the first T dwarf, we have a population of ultracool L and T dwarfs that is large enough to show a range of atmospheric properties, as well as model atmospheres advanced enough to study these properties in detail. Since the last Cool Stars meeting, there have been observational developments which aid in these studies. they present recent mid-infrared photometry and spectroscopy from the Spitzer Space Telescope which confirms the prevalence of vertical mixing in the atmospheres of L and T dwarfs. Hence, the 700 K to 2200 K L and t dwarf photspheres require a large number of parameters for successful modeling: effective temperature, gravity, metallicity, grain sedimentation and vertical mixing efficiency. They also describe initial results of a search for ultracool dwarfs in the UKIRT Infrared Deep Sky Survey, and present the latest T dwarf found to date. They conclude with a discussion of the definition of the later-than-T spectral type, the Y dwarf.

  1. The brown dwarf kinematics project

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Faherty, Jackie K.

    2010-10-01

    Brown dwarfs are a recent addition to the plethora of objects studied in Astronomy. With theoretical masses between 13 and 75 MJupiter , they lack sustained stable Hydrogen burning so they never join the stellar main sequence. They have physical properties similar to both planets and low-mass stars so studies of their population inform on both. The distances and kinematics of brown dwarfs provide key statistical constraints on their ages, moving group membership, absolute brightnesses, evolutionary trends, and multiplicity. Yet, until my thesis, fundamental measurements of parallax and proper motion were made for only a relatively small fraction of the known population. To address this deficiency, I initiated the Brown Dwarf Kinematics (BDKP). Over the past four years I have re-imaged the majority of spectroscopically confirmed field brown dwarfs (or ultracool dwarfs---UCDs) and created the largest proper motion catalog for ultracool dwarfs to date. Using new astrometric information I examined population characteristics such as ages calculated from velocity dispersions and correlations between kinematics and colors. Using proper motions, I identified several new wide co-moving companions and investigated binding energy (and hence formation) limitations as well as the frequency of hierarchical companions. Concurrently over the past four years I have been conducting a parallax survey of 84 UCDs including those showing spectral signatures of youth, metal-poor brown dwarfs, and those within 20 pc of the Sun. Using absolute magnitude relations in J,H, and K, I identified overluminous binary candidates and investigated known flux-reversal binaries. Using current evolutionary models, I compared the MK vs J-K color magnitude diagram to model predictions and found that the low-surface gravity dwarfs are significantly red-ward and underluminous of predictions and a handful of late-type T dwarfs may require thicker clouds to account for their scatter.

  2. Seed germination and life history syndromes in the California chaparral

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Keeley, J.E.

    1991-01-01

    Syndromes are life history responses that are correlated to environmental regimes and are shared by a group of species (Stebbins, 1974). In the California chaparral there are two syndromes contrasted by the timing of seedling recruitment relative to wildfires. One syndrome, here called the fire-recruiter or refractory seed syndrome, includes species (both resprouting and non-resprouting) which share the feature that the timing of seedling establishment is specialized to the first rainy season after fire. Included are woody, suffrutescent and annual life forms but no geophytes have this syndrome. These species are linked by the characteristic that their seeds have a dormancy which is readily broken by environmental stimuli such as intense heat shock or chemicals leached from charred wood. Such seeds are referred to as “refractory” and dormancy, in some cases, is due to seed coat impermeability (such seeds are commonly called hardseeded), but in other cases the mechanism is unknown. Seeds of some may require cold stratification and/or light in addition to fire related stimuli. In the absence of fire related cues, a portion or all of a species’ seed pool remains dormant. Most have locally dispersed seeds that persist in the soil seed bank until the site burns. Dispersal of propagules is largely during spring and summer which facilitates the avoidance of flowering and fruiting during the summer and fall drought. Within a life form (e.g., shrub, suffrutescent, etc.), the seeds of these species have less mass than those of species with non-refractory seeds and this possibly reflects the environmental favorableness of the postfire environment for seedling establishment. Regardless of when fire occurs, germination is normally delayed until late winter or early spring. In the absence of fire, or other disturbance, opportunities for population expansion are largely lacking for species with this syndrome. The other syndrome, here called the fire-resister or non

  3. Magnetic Field of Strange Dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baghdasaryan, D. S.

    2016-03-01

    The generation of a magnetic field in a strange quark star owing to differential rotation of the superfluid and superconducting quark core relative to the normal electron-nuclear crust of the star is examined. The maximum possible magnetic field on the surface is estimated for various models of strange dwarfs. Depending on the configuration parameters, i.e., the mass M and radius R of the star, a range of 103-105 G is found. These values of the magnetic field may be an additional condition for identification of strange dwarfs among the extensive class of observed white dwarfs.

  4. PHL 5038: a spatially resolved white dwarf + brown dwarf binary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Steele, P. R.; Burleigh, M. R.; Farihi, J.; Gänsicke, B. T.; Jameson, R. F.; Dobbie, P. D.; Barstow, M. A.

    2009-06-01

    A near-infrared excess is detected at the white dwarf PHL 5038 in UKIDSS photometry, consistent with the presence of a cool, substellar companion. We have obtained H- and K-grism spectra and images of PHL 5038 using NIRI on Gemini North. The target is spatially and spectrally resolved into two components: an 8000 K DA white dwarf, and a likely L8 brown dwarf companion, separated by 0.94 arcsec. The spectral type of the secondary was determined using standard spectral indices for late L and T dwarfs. The projected orbital separation of the binary is 55 AU, so it becomes only the second known wide WD+dL binary to be found after GD 165AB. This object could potentially be used as a benchmark for testing substellar evolutionary models at intermediate to older ages.

  5. Supplementing seed banks to rehabilitate disturbed Mojave Desert shrublands: Where do all the seeds go?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    DeFalco, L.A.; Esque, T.C.; Nicklas, M.B.; Kane, J.M.

    2012-01-01

    Revegetation of degraded arid lands often involves supplementing impoverished seed banks and improving the seedbed, yet these approaches frequently fail. To understand these failures, we tracked the fates of seeds for six shrub species that were broadcast across two contrasting surface disturbances common to the Mojave Desert-sites compacted by concentrated vehicle use and trenched sites where topsoil and subsurface soils were mixed. We evaluated seedbed treatments that enhance soil-seed contact (tackifier) and create surface roughness while reducing soil bulk density (harrowing). We also explored whether seed harvesting by granivores and seedling suppression by non-native annuals influence the success of broadcast seeding in revegetating degraded shrublands. Ten weeks after treatments, seeds readily moved off of experimental plots in untreated compacted sites, but seed movements were reduced 32% by tackifier and 55% through harrowing. Harrowing promoted seedling emergence in compacted sites, particularly for the early-colonizing species Encelia farinosa, but tackifier was largely ineffective. The inherent surface roughness of trenched sites retained three times the number of seeds than compacted sites, but soil mixing during trench development likely altered the suitability of the seedbed thus resulting in poor seedling emergence. Non-native annuals had little influence on seed fates during our study. In contrast, the prevalence of harvester ants increased seed removal on compacted sites, whereas rodent activity influenced removal on trenched sites. Future success of broadcast seeding in arid lands depends on evaluating disturbance characteristics prior to seeding and selecting appropriate species and seasons for application. ?? 2010 Society for Ecological Restoration International.

  6. Spatial patterns of grasses and shrubs in an arid grassland environment

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    In the Chihuahuan Desert of Mexico and New Mexico, shrub invasion is a common problem, and once-abundant grassland ecosystems are being replaced by shrub-dominated habitat. The spatial arrangement of grasses and shrubs in these arid grasslands can provide better insight into community dynamics and c...

  7. Shrubs as ecosystem engineers across an environmental gradient: effects on species richness and exotic plant invasion.

    PubMed

    Kleinhesselink, Andrew R; Magnoli, Susan M; Cushman, J Hall

    2014-08-01

    Ecosystem-engineering plants modify the physical environment and can increase species diversity and exotic species invasion. At the individual level, the effects of ecosystem engineers on other plants often become more positive in stressful environments. In this study, we investigated whether the community-level effects of ecosystem engineers also become stronger in more stressful environments. Using comparative and experimental approaches, we assessed the ability of a native shrub (Ericameria ericoides) to act as an ecosystem engineer across a stress gradient in a coastal dune in northern California, USA. We found increased coarse organic matter and lower wind speeds within shrub patches. Growth of a dominant invasive grass (Bromus diandrus) was facilitated both by aboveground shrub biomass and by growing in soil taken from shrub patches. Experimental removal of shrubs negatively affected species most associated with shrubs and positively affected species most often found outside of shrubs. Counter to the stress-gradient hypothesis, the effects of shrubs on the physical environment and individual plant growth did not increase across the established stress gradient at this site. At the community level, shrub patches increased beta diversity, and contained greater rarified richness and exotic plant cover than shrub-free patches. Shrub effects on rarified richness increased with environmental stress, but effects on exotic cover and beta diversity did not. Our study provides evidence for the community-level effects of shrubs as ecosystem engineers in this system, but shows that these effects do not necessarily become stronger in more stressful environments.

  8. Effects of flowering phenology and synchrony on the reproductive success of a long-flowering shrub

    PubMed Central

    Rodríguez-Pérez, Javier; Traveset, Anna

    2016-01-01

    Flowering phenology and synchrony with biotic and abiotic resources are crucial traits determining the reproductive success in insect-pollinated plants. In seasonal climates, plants flowering for long periods should assure reproductive success when resources are more predictable. In this work, we evaluated the relationship between flowering phenology and synchrony and reproductive success in Hypericum balearicum, a shrub flowering all year round but mainly during spring and summer. We studied two contrasting localities (differing mostly in rainfall) during 3 years, and at different biological scales spanning from localities to individual flowers and fruits. We first monitored (monthly) flowering phenology and reproductive success (fruit and seed set) of plants, and assessed whether in the locality with higher rainfall plants had longer flowering phenology and synchrony and relatively higher reproductive success within or outside the flowering peak. Secondly, we censused pollinators on H. balearicum individuals and measured reproductive success along the flowering peak of each locality to test for an association between (i) richness and abundance of pollinators and (ii) fruit and seed set, and seed weight. We found that most flowers (∼90 %) and the highest fruit set (∼70 %) were produced during the flowering peak of each locality. Contrary to expectations, plants in the locality with lower rainfall showed more relaxed flowering phenology and synchrony and set more fruits outside the flowering peak. During the flowering peak of each locality, the reproductive success of early-flowering individuals depended on a combination of both pollinator richness and abundance and rainfall; by contrast, reproductive success of late-flowering individuals was most dependent on rainfall. Plant species flowering for long periods in seasonal climates, thus, appear to be ideal organisms to understand how flowering phenology and synchrony match with biotic and abiotic resources, and

  9. Genome-Scale Transcriptome Analysis of the Desert Shrub Artemisia sphaerocephala

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Lijing; Hu, Xiaowei; Miao, Xiumei; Chen, Xiaolong; Nan, Shuzhen; Fu, Hua

    2016-01-01

    Background Artemisia sphaerocephala, a semi-shrub belonging to the Artemisia genus of the Compositae family, is an important pioneer plant that inhabits moving and semi-stable sand dunes in the deserts and steppes of northwest and north-central China. It is very resilient in extreme environments. Additionally, its seeds have excellent nutritional value, and the abundant lipids and polysaccharides in the seeds make this plant a potential valuable source of bio-energy. However, partly due to the scarcity of genetic information, the genetic mechanisms controlling the traits and environmental adaptation capacity of A. sphaerocephala are unknown. Results Here, we present the first in-depth transcriptomic analysis of A. sphaerocephala. To maximize the representation of conditional transcripts, mRNA was obtained from 17 samples, including living tissues of desert-growing A. sphaerocephala, seeds germinated in the laboratory, and calli subjected to no stress (control) and high and low temperature, high and low osmotic, and salt stresses. De novo transcriptome assembly performed using an Illumina HiSeq 2500 platform resulted in the generation of 68,373 unigenes. We analyzed the key genes involved in the unsaturated fatty acid synthesis pathway and identified 26 A. sphaerocephala fad2 genes, which is the largest fad2 gene family reported to date. Furthermore, a set of genes responsible for resistance to extreme temperatures, salt, drought and a combination of stresses was identified. Conclusion The present work provides abundant genomic information for functional dissection of the important traits of A. sphaerocephala and contributes to the current understanding of molecular adaptive mechanisms of A. sphaerocephala in the desert environment. Identification of the key genes in the unsaturated fatty acid synthesis pathway could increase understanding of the biological regulatory mechanisms of fatty acid composition traits in plants and facilitate genetic manipulation of the

  10. Effects of flowering phenology and synchrony on the reproductive success of a long-flowering shrub.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Pérez, Javier; Traveset, Anna

    2016-02-02

    Flowering phenology and synchrony with biotic and abiotic resources are crucial traits determining the reproductive success in insect-pollinated plants. In seasonal climates, plants flowering for long periods should assure reproductive success when resources are more predictable. In this work, we evaluated the relationship between flowering phenology and synchrony and reproductive success in Hypericum balearicum, a shrub flowering all year round but mainly during spring and summer. We studied two contrasting localities (differing mostly in rainfall) during 3 years, and at different biological scales spanning from localities to individual flowers and fruits. We first monitored (monthly) flowering phenology and reproductive success (fruit and seed set) of plants, and assessed whether in the locality with higher rainfall plants had longer flowering phenology and synchrony and relatively higher reproductive success within or outside the flowering peak. Secondly, we censused pollinators on H. balearicum individuals and measured reproductive success along the flowering peak of each locality to test for an association between (i) richness and abundance of pollinators and (ii) fruit and seed set, and seed weight. We found that most flowers (∼90 %) and the highest fruit set (∼70 %) were produced during the flowering peak of each locality. Contrary to expectations, plants in the locality with lower rainfall showed more relaxed flowering phenology and synchrony and set more fruits outside the flowering peak. During the flowering peak of each locality, the reproductive success of early-flowering individuals depended on a combination of both pollinator richness and abundance and rainfall; by contrast, reproductive success of late-flowering individuals was most dependent on rainfall. Plant species flowering for long periods in seasonal climates, thus, appear to be ideal organisms to understand how flowering phenology and synchrony match with biotic and abiotic resources, and

  11. Grass-Shrub Associations over a Precipitation Gradient and Their Implications for Restoration in the Great Basin, USA.

    PubMed

    Holthuijzen, Maike F; Veblen, Kari E

    2015-01-01

    As environmental stress increases positive (facilitative) plant interactions often predominate. Plant-plant associations (or lack thereof) can indicate whether certain plant species favor particular types of microsites (e.g., shrub canopies or plant-free interspaces) and can provide valuable insights into whether "nurse plants" will contribute to seeding or planting success during ecological restoration. It can be difficult, however, to anticipate how relationships between nurse plants and plants used for restoration may change over large-ranging, regional stress gradients. We investigated associations between the shrub, Wyoming big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis), and three common native grasses (Poa secunda, Elymus elymoides, and Pseudoroegneria spicata), representing short-, medium-, and deep-rooted growth forms, respectively, across an annual rainfall gradient (220-350 mm) in the Great Basin, USA. We hypothesized that positive shrub-grass relationships would become more frequent at lower rainfall levels, as indicated by greater cover of grasses in shrub canopies than vegetation-free interspaces. We sampled aerial cover, density, height, basal width, grazing status, and reproductive status of perennial grasses in canopies and interspaces of 25-33 sagebrush individuals at 32 sites along a rainfall gradient. We found that aerial cover of the shallow rooted grass, P. secunda, was higher in sagebrush canopy than interspace microsites at lower levels of rainfall. Cover and density of the medium-rooted grass, E. elymoides were higher in sagebrush canopies than interspaces at all but the highest rainfall levels. Neither annual rainfall nor sagebrush canopy microsite significantly affected P. spicata cover. E. elymoides and P. spicata plants were taller, narrower, and less likely to be grazed in shrub canopy microsites than interspaces. Our results suggest that exploring sagebrush canopy microsites for restoration of native perennial grasses might

  12. Grass-Shrub Associations over a Precipitation Gradient and Their Implications for Restoration in the Great Basin, USA

    PubMed Central

    Holthuijzen, Maike F.; Veblen, Kari E.

    2015-01-01

    As environmental stress increases positive (facilitative) plant interactions often predominate. Plant-plant associations (or lack thereof) can indicate whether certain plant species favor particular types of microsites (e.g., shrub canopies or plant-free interspaces) and can provide valuable insights into whether “nurse plants” will contribute to seeding or planting success during ecological restoration. It can be difficult, however, to anticipate how relationships between nurse plants and plants used for restoration may change over large-ranging, regional stress gradients. We investigated associations between the shrub, Wyoming big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentata ssp. wyomingensis), and three common native grasses (Poa secunda, Elymus elymoides, and Pseudoroegneria spicata), representing short-, medium-, and deep-rooted growth forms, respectively, across an annual rainfall gradient (220–350 mm) in the Great Basin, USA. We hypothesized that positive shrub-grass relationships would become more frequent at lower rainfall levels, as indicated by greater cover of grasses in shrub canopies than vegetation-free interspaces. We sampled aerial cover, density, height, basal width, grazing status, and reproductive status of perennial grasses in canopies and interspaces of 25–33 sagebrush individuals at 32 sites along a rainfall gradient. We found that aerial cover of the shallow rooted grass, P. secunda, was higher in sagebrush canopy than interspace microsites at lower levels of rainfall. Cover and density of the medium-rooted grass, E. elymoides were higher in sagebrush canopies than interspaces at all but the highest rainfall levels. Neither annual rainfall nor sagebrush canopy microsite significantly affected P. spicata cover. E. elymoides and P. spicata plants were taller, narrower, and less likely to be grazed in shrub canopy microsites than interspaces. Our results suggest that exploring sagebrush canopy microsites for restoration of native perennial grasses

  13. Rotation Velocities of White Dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karl, C.; Napiwotzki, R.; Heber, U.; Dreizler, S.; Koester, D.; Reid, I. N.

    White dwarfs are the compact remnants of low and intermediate mass stars (M < 8Msolar). Due to the conservation of angular momentum white dwarfs should be very fast rotators, if a significant fraction of the angular momentum of the progenitor stars were preserved. The existence of sharp NLTE cores of the hydrogen Hα line in high resolution spectra (obtained at the Keck observatory) of DA white dwarfs allowed us to determine (projected) rotational velocities v sin i for white dwarfs. Among those of our targets lying close to the ZZ Ceti instability many show evidence for extra broadening similar to rotation, whereas stars at higher temperatures (and therefore younger ones) rotate more slowly or not at all. Our result based on a large sample is in accordance with previous results presented by Koester et al. (1998). We discuss possible explanations for this astonishing result.

  14. White Dwarfs in Astrometric Binaries?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oliversen, N. A.; Evans, N. R.; Feibelman, W. A.; Kamper, K. W.

    1993-12-01

    Lippincott (1978, Space Sci Rev, 22, 153) compiled a list of astrometric binaries with unseen companions typically within 20 pc of the sun. Red companions have been observed in a number of these systems (e.g. McCarthy, D. W. 1983, IAU Coll. # 76, p. 107). Unseen, low mass companions could also be white dwarfs. We have obtained IUE observations of stars on the list which have primaries with spectral types M1 or earlier (white dwarf companions of cooler primaries could be detected from the ground), and are brighter than 10 mag, which do not have known red companions. Preliminary reductions (comparison with standard stars of appropriate spectral types) indicate that there are no white dwarfs in the sample. Further processing is being done to determine limits on possible white dwarf temperatures.

  15. Nitrogen oxide pullution may spark seeds` growth

    SciTech Connect

    Malakoff, D.A.

    1997-05-23

    Could a common air pollutant be fooling the seeds of some wild plants into germinating when conditions are deadly to the seedlings? That`s the provocative question raised by a finding reported in this issue. Two ecologists have learned that the seeds of a common California wildflower can be prompted to germinate by exposure to nitrogen oxides, gases produced by both natural wildfires and motor vehicles and power plants. Botanists have long recognized that many plants inhabiting fire-prone areas, such as the and forests of the Southwest and the shrub-choked hillsides of southern California, grow best on freshly burned-over land. Scorched soils are often rich in nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus released from burned vegetation, and they are free of shrubs that can otherwise shade sun-loving seedlings. For many of these phoenix like plants, a fire`s searing heat is what prompts them to rise from the ashes. Heat cracks the hard, outer coat of seeds that can lie dormant in the soil for decades. This allows water to seep in, spurring growth.

  16. Revealing Massive Black Holes in Dwarf Galaxies with X-rays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reines, A.

    2014-07-01

    Supermassive black holes (BHs) live at the heart of essentially all massive galaxies, power AGN, and are thought to be important agents in the evolution of their hosts. However, the origin of these monster BHs is largely unknown. While direct observations of the first ``seeds" of supermassive BHs in the infant Universe are unobtainable with current telescopes, finding and studying dwarf galaxies hosting massive BHs today can provide valuable constraints on the masses, host galaxies, and formation mechanism of supermassive BH seeds. We have recently completed the first systematic search for AGN in dwarf galaxies using optical spectroscopy, increasing the number of known dwarfs with massive BHs by more than an order of magnitude (Reines et al. 2013). However, this optical search is biased towards BHs radiating at high fractions of their Eddington limit in galaxies with little on-going star formation. Alternative search techniques and diagnostics at other wavelengths are necessary to make further progress. I will discuss our efforts to find and study massive BHs in dwarf galaxies using observations at X-ray wavelengths. These observations are more sensitive to weakly accreting massive BHs and are already beginning to reveal massive BHs hidden at optical wavelengths in star-forming dwarf galaxies.

  17. Shrub morpho-types as indicator for the water flow energy - Tivoli travertine case (Central Italy)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Erthal, Marcelle Marques; Capezzuoli, Enrico; Mancini, Alessandro; Claes, Hannes; Soete, Jeroen; Swennen, Rudy

    2017-01-01

    Travertines from Tivoli area (Central Italy) possess abundant shrub-like fabrics that are laterally continuous over hundreds of square meters. They occur dominantly in horizontal layers with aggradational and progradational stacking patterns. Their fabrics and morphologies are remarkably similar to the shrubs lithotypes reported in literature for the Pre-Salt reservoirs, offshore Brazil and Angola, with huge oil accumulations. Petrographic and micro-computer tomography analyses allowed the identification of six shrub morpho-types (i.e., narrow dendriform, wide dendriform, fili dendriform, arborescent, arbustiform and pustular). Dendriform shrubs are the most common lithotype in Tivoli area, and three different subtypes could be distinguished according to the arrangement of their branches. The shrubs consist largely of peloidal micritic aggregates engulfed in spar calcite, ranging in average from 1 to 3 cm in height. The shrubs are interpreted to have developed in very shallow extensive waterlogged slightly inclined flat areas, changing laterally into a slope system with crusts as the main lithotype. Changes in the hydrodynamic conditions with episodes of stagnancy influenced the shrub morpho-types making them very variegated. Shrub morphologies likely reflect specific (micro-) environments that are controlled by water flow rates, evaporation and microbial activity. The latter processes influenced shrub fabric and morphology. Under high flow conditions, CO2 degassing is the main process leading to carbonate precipitation. Consequently, denser and tightly packed morphologies will precipitate, composing mainly the crust lithotype. In this scenario microbes are less dominant. Dendriform shrubs, with narrow, wide and fili morphologies are interpreted to occur in moderate to low energy water flows. Narrow dendriform shrubs reflect faster flowing conditions, with decreasing impact of flow on the morphological aspects from wide dendriform shrubs to fili dendriform shrubs

  18. Seed dispersal limitations shift over time in tropical forest restoration.

    PubMed

    Reid, J Leighton; Holl, Karen D; Zahawi, Rakan A

    2015-06-01

    Past studies have shown that tropical forest regeneration on degraded farmlands is initially limited by lack of seed dispersal, but few studies have tracked changes in abundance and composition of seed rain past the first few years after land abandonment. We measured seed rain for 12 months in 10 6-9-year-old restoration sites and five mature, reference forests in southern Costa Rica in order to learn (1) if seed rain limitation persists past the first few years of regeneration; (2) how restoration treatments influence seed community structure and composition; and (3) whether seed rain limitation is contingent on landscape context. Each restoration site contained three 0.25-ha treatment plots: (1) a naturally regenerating control, (2) tree islands, and (3) a mixed-species tree plantation. Sites spanned a deforestation gradient with 9-89% forest area within 500 m around the treatment plots. Contrary to previous studies, we found that tree seeds were abundant and ubiquitous across all treatment plots (585.1 ± 142.0 seeds · m(-2) · yr(-1) [mean ± SE]), indicating that lack of seed rain ceased to limit forest regeneration within the first decade of recovery. Pioneer trees and shrubs comprised the vast majority of seeds, but compositional differences between restoration sites and reference forests were driven by rarer, large-seeded species. Large, animal-dispersed tree seeds were more abundant in tree islands (4.6 ± 2.9 seeds · m(-2) · yr(-1)) and plantations (5.8 ± 3.0 seeds · m(-2) · yr(-1)) than control plots (0.2 ± 0.1 seeds · m(-2) · yr(-1)), contributing to greater tree species richness in actively restored plots. Planted tree species accounted for < 1% of seeds. We found little evidence for landscape forest cover effects on seed rain, consistent with previous studies. We conclude that seed rain limitation shifted from an initial, complete lack of tree seeds to a specific limitation on large-seeded, mature forest species over the first decade

  19. [Dynamics of allozyme heterozygosity in Siberian dwarf pine Pinus pumila (Pall.) Regel populations of the Russian Far East: comparison of embryos and maternal plants].

    PubMed

    Politov, D V; Belokon', M M; Belokon', Iu S

    2006-10-01

    Siberian dwarf pine, or Japanese stone pine, Pinus pumila (Pall.) Regel is widespread in eastern Siberia and the Russian Far East; the species is bird-dispersed and has a unique spreading or shrub living form. A mixed mating system (predominant outcrossing with self-pollination and matings of close relatives) leads to the formation of partly inbred progenies in P. pumila, as in the majority of other conifers. The question arises as to whether inbred individuals persist in the reproductive part of a population, which can have negative genetic consequences. The ADH, FDH, FEST, GDH, GOT, IDH, LAP, MNR, MDH, PEPCA, 6-PGD, PGI, PGM, SKDH, and SOD isozyme systems were analyzed to study the dynamics of heterozygosity in four P. pumila natural populations from the Pacific region, optimal for the species. Samples were collected in northern Koryakia, southern Kamchatka (two samples), and the Kunashir Island (Kurils). Wright's fixation index was used to estimate the level of inbreeding in embryos from dormant seeds resulting from free pollination and in maternal plants. A substantial level of inbreeding (F(IS) = 0.124-0.342) was observed in the embryo samples but not in three out of the four adult samples. The inbreeding level at the reproductive age was high only in the sample from Koryakia, which was explained by a relatively young age of plants in the population frequently affected by fires. A general increase in heterozygosity, characteristic of other conifers as well, was attributed to elimination of inbred progenies and by balancing selection for heterozygotes, which is a key factor maintaining allozyme polymorphism in populations.

  20. Shrub communities as inhibitors of plant succession in southern Quebec

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meilleur, Alain; Véronneau, Hélène; Bouchard, André

    1994-11-01

    The purpose of our research was to identify shrub species growing in southern Quebec that inhibit ecological succession in power-line corridors. Results are presented in three parts. First, clonal characteristics that allowed the establishment of stable communities were identified. Second, successional vector analysis identified those species that have the potential to inhibit succession. In poorly drained sites those species were Cornus stolonifera, C. obliqua, Salix petiolaris, and Spiraea alba. In well-drained sites, those species were Zanthoxylum americanum, Rubus idaeus, Spiraea alba, Rhus typhina, and Thuja occidentalis. Third, analysis of variance showed that there is a significantly larger number of tree seedlings found in adjacent herbaceous communities than found under the dense cover of Cornus stolonifera, C. obliqua, Salix petiolaris, Spiraea alba, Rhus typhina, Rubus idaeus, Thuya occidentalis, and Zanthoxylum americanum. These results indicate that the planting of selected shrub species could, through biological control, delay reforestation.

  1. Shrub Abundance Mapping in Arctic Tundra with Misr

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duchesne, R.; Chopping, M. J.; Wang, Z.; Schaaf, C.; Tape, K. D.

    2013-12-01

    Over the last 60 years an increase in shrub abundance has been observed in the Arctic tundra in connection with a rapid surface warming trend. Rapid shrub expansion may have consequences in terms of ecosystem structure and function, albedo, and feedbacks to climate; however, its rate is not yet known. The goal of this research effort is thus to map large scale changes in Arctic tundra vegetation by exploiting the structural signal in moderate resolution satellite remote sensing images from NASA's Multiangle Imaging SpectroRadiometer (MISR), mapped onto a 250m Albers Conic Equal Area grid. We present here large area shrub mapping supported by reference data collated using extensive field inventory data and high resolution panchromatic imagery. MISR Level 1B2 Terrain radiance scenes from the Terra satellite from 15 June-31 July, 2000 - 2010 were converted to surface bidirectional reflectance factors (BRF) using MISR Toolkit routines and the MISR 1 km LAND product BRFs. The red band data in all available cameras were used to invert the RossThick-LiSparse-Reciprocal BRDF model to retrieve kernel weights, model-fitting RMSE, and Weights of Determination. The reference database was constructed using aerial survey, three field campaigns (field inventory for shrub count, cover, mean radius and height), and high resolution imagery. Tall shrub number, mean crown radius, cover, and mean height estimates were obtained from QuickBird and GeoEye panchromatic image chips using the CANAPI algorithm, and calibrated using field-based estimates, thus extending the database to over eight hundred locations. Tall shrub fractional cover maps for the North Slope of Alaska were constructed using the bootstrap forest machine learning algorithm that exploits the surface information provided by MISR. The reference database was divided into two datasets for training and validation. The model derived used a set of 19 independent variables(the three kernel weights, ratios and interaction terms

  2. Shrub encroachment control by browsing: Targeting the right demographic process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    da Silveira Pontes, Laíse; Magda, Danièle; Jarry, Marc; Gleizes, Benoît; Agreil, Cyril

    2012-11-01

    Exploring key demographic parameters for establishment and growth of shrub populations enables us to identify the life stages or plant organs that browsers need to consume to effectively influence shrub population dynamics. However, there is a lack of concrete knowledge on how browsing can efficiently meet this goal. We therefore tested the impact of different levels of browsing intensity on a key demographic parameter (survival of juveniles) of a major colonizing shrub species (broom, Cytisus scoparius) in order to control population growth, and designed a browsing management strategy focused on this target stage. Three browsing intensities, representing pertinent management practices, were simulated on juveniles (2 years old) in a broom population. Juvenile broom plants were either left untouched (control treatment; n = 126) or had 50% or 90% of their total edible stem biomass removed for "light-intensity browsing" (n = 127) and "high-intensity browsing" (n = 77) treatments, respectively. Survival and fecundity data were collected over 6 years. Standard matrix modeling was used to analyze the impact of browsing on changes in population growth rate (λ), and the results were 6.34 (control), 2.26 (light browsing) and 0.85 (heavy browsing). Therefore, the natural expansion of broom populations may be slowed by light browsing or even reversed by heavy browsing (λ < 1). This multi-year survey confirms that focusing browsing on juveniles is an efficient strategy for controlling broom dominance. Shrub control strategies should therefore target early-growth-stage populations and repeat the browsing strategy at the same intensity over several years to achieve cumulative effects.

  3. Germination response of Apocynum venetum seeds to temperature and water potential

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Apocynum venetum (commonly known as luobuma or rafuma) is a shrub that is native to Eurasia. It is economically important for sand fixation, forage production, honey production, medicine, fiber and fuel. Rapid and uniform seed germination is critical for successful crop establishment and vegetation ...

  4. Soil microbial diversity in the vicinity of desert shrubs.

    PubMed

    Saul-Tcherkas, Vered; Unc, Adrian; Steinberger, Yosef

    2013-04-01

    Water and nutrient availability are the major limiting factors of biological activity in arid and semiarid ecosystems. Therefore, perennial plants have developed different ecophysiological adaptations to cope with harsh conditions. The chemical profile of the root exudates varies among plant species and this can induce variability in associated microbial populations. We examined the influence of two shrubs species, Artemisia sieberi and Noaea mucronata, on soil microbial diversity. Soil samples were collected monthly, from December 2006 to November 2007, near canopies of both shrubs (0-10-cm depth). Samples were used for abiotic tests and determination of soil bacterial diversity. No significant differences were found in the abiotic variables (soil moisture, total organic matter, and total soluble nitrogen (TSN)) between soil samples collected from under the two shrubs during the study period. No obvious differences in the Shannon-Weaver index, evenness values, or total phylogenetic distances were found for the soil microbial communities. However, detailed denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE) clustering as well as taxonomic diversity analyses indicated clear shifts in the soil microbial community composition. These shifts were governed by seasonal variability in water availability and, significantly, by plant species type.

  5. Fire tolerance of a resprouting Artemisia (Asteraceae) shrub

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Winter, S.L.; Fuhlendorf, S.D.; Goad, C.L.; Davis, C.A.; Hickman, K.R.; Leslie, David M.

    2011-01-01

    In North America, most Artemisia (Asteraceae) shrub species lack the ability to resprout after disturbances that remove aboveground biomass. We studied the response of one of the few resprouting Artemisia shrubs, Artemisia filifolia (sand sagebrush), to the effects of prescribed fires. We collected data on A. filifolia density and structural characteristics (height, canopy area, and canopy volume) in an A. filifolia shrubland in the southern Great Plains of North America. Our study sites included areas that had not been treated with prescribed fire, areas that had been treated with only one prescribed fire within the previous 5 years, and areas that had been treated with two prescribed fires within the previous 10 years. Our data were collected at time periods ranging from 1/2 to 5 years after the prescribed fires. Density of A. filifolia was not affected by one or two fires. Structural characteristics, although initially altered by prescribed fire, recovered to levels characteristic of unburned areas in 3-4 years after those fires. In contrast to most non-sprouting North American Artemisia shrub species, our research suggested that the resprouting A. filifolia is highly tolerant to the effects of fire. ?? 2011 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

  6. Multi-scale investigation of shrub encroachment in southern Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aplin, Paul; Marston, Christopher; Wilkinson, David; Field, Richard; O'Regan, Hannah

    2016-04-01

    There is growing speculation that savannah environments throughout Africa have been subject to shrub encroachment in recent years, whereby grassland is lost to woody vegetation cover. Changes in the relative proportions of grassland and woodland are important in the context of conservation of savannah systems, with implications for faunal distributions, environmental management and tourism. Here, we focus on southern Kruger National Park, South Africa, and investigate whether or not shrub encroachment has occurred over the last decade and a half. We use a multi-scale approach, examining the complementarity of medium (e.g. Landsat TM and OLI) and fine (e.g. QuickBird and WorldView-2) spatial resolution satellite sensor imagery, supported by intensive field survey in 2002 and 2014. We employ semi-automated land cover classification, involving a hybrid unsupervised clustering approach with manual class grouping and checking, followed by change detection post-classification comparison analysis. The results show that shrub encroachment is indeed occurring, a finding evidenced through three fine resolution replicate images plus medium resolution imagery. The results also demonstrate the complementarity of medium and fine resolution imagery, though some thematic information must be sacrificed to maintain high medium resolution classification accuracy. Finally, the findings have broader implications for issues such as vegetation seasonality, spatial transferability and management practices.

  7. Dwarf elliptical galaxies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ferguson, Henry C.; Binggeli, Bruno

    1994-01-01

    Dwarf elliptical (dE) galaxies, with blue absolute magnitudes typically fainter than M(sub B) = -16, are the most numerous type of galaxy in the nearby universe. Tremendous advances have been made over the past several years in delineating the properties of both Local Group satellite dE's and the large dE populations of nearby clusters. We review some of these advances, with particular attention to how well currently availiable data can constrain (a) models for the formation of dE's, (b) the physical and evolutionary connections between different types of galaxies that overlap in the same portion of the mass-spectrum of galaxies, (c) the contribution of dE's to the galaxy luminosity functions in clusters and the field, (d) the star-forming histories of dE's and their possible contribution to faint galaxy counts, and (e) the clustering properties of dE's. In addressing these issues, we highlight the extent to which selection effects temper these constraints, and outline areas where new data would be particularly valuable.

  8. Brown dwarfs as close companions to white dwarfs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stringfellow, Guy S.; Bodenheimer, Peter; Black, David C.

    1990-01-01

    The influence of the radiation flux emitted by a white dwarf primary on the evolution of a closely orbiting brown dwarf (BD) companion is investigated. Full stellar evolutionary calculations are presented for both isolated and thermal bath cases, including effects of large variations in the atmospheric grain opacities. High grain opacities significantly increase the radii of the BDs, but the thermal bath does not. The major influence of the thermal bath is to increase substantially the surface temperature and luminosity of the BD at a given age. These results are compared with the observational properties of the possible BD companion of the white dwarf G29-38. Inclusion of both physical effects, high grain opacities and thermal bath, increases the mass range (0.034-0.063 solar masses) of viable models significantly, yet the final determination of whether the object is indeed a BD requires improvements in the observations of the system's properties.

  9. Mid-infrared Colors of Dwarf Galaxies: Young Starbursts Mimicking Active Galactic Nuclei

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hainline, Kevin N.; Reines, Amy E.; Greene, Jenny E.; Stern, Daniel

    2016-12-01

    Searching for active galactic nuclei (AGNs) in dwarf galaxies is important for our understanding of the seed black holes that formed in the early universe. Here, we test infrared selection methods for AGN activity at low galaxy masses. Our parent sample consists of ˜18,000 nearby dwarf galaxies (M * < 3 × 109 M ⊙, z < 0.055) in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey with significant detections in the first three bands of the AllWISE data release from the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE). First, we demonstrate that the majority of optically selected AGNs in dwarf galaxies are not selected as AGNs using WISE infrared color diagnostics and that the infrared emission is dominated by the host galaxies. We then investigate the infrared properties of optically selected star-forming dwarf galaxies, finding that the galaxies with the reddest infrared colors are the most compact, with blue optical colors, young stellar ages, and large specific star formation rates. These results indicate that great care must be taken when selecting AGNs in dwarf galaxies using infrared colors, as star-forming dwarf galaxies are capable of heating dust in such a way that mimics the infrared colors of more luminous AGNs. In particular, a simple W1-W2 color cut alone should not be used to select AGNs in dwarf galaxies. With these complications in mind, we present a sample of 41 dwarf galaxies that fall in the WISE infrared color space typically occupied by more luminous AGNs and that are worthy of follow-up observations.

  10. Shifts in Aboveground Biomass Allocation Patterns of Dominant Shrub Species across a Strong Environmental Gradient

    PubMed Central

    Kumordzi, Bright B.; Gundale, Michael J.; Nilsson, Marie-Charlotte; Wardle, David A.

    2016-01-01

    Most plant biomass allocation studies have focused on allocation to shoots versus roots, and little is known about drivers of allocation for aboveground plant organs. We explored the drivers of within-and between-species variation of aboveground biomass allocation across a strong environmental resource gradient, i.e., a long-term chronosequence of 30 forested islands in northern Sweden across which soil fertility and plant productivity declines while light availability increases. For each of the three coexisting dominant understory dwarf shrub species on each island, we estimated the fraction of the total aboveground biomass produced year of sampling that was allocated to sexual reproduction (i.e., fruits), leaves and stems for each of two growing seasons, to determine how biomass allocation responded to the chronosequence at both the within-species and whole community levels. Against expectations, within-species allocation to fruits was least on less fertile islands, and allocation to leaves at the whole community level was greatest on intermediate islands. Consistent with expectations, different coexisting species showed contrasting allocation patterns, with the species that was best adapted for more fertile conditions allocating the most to vegetative organs, and with its allocation pattern showing the strongest response to the gradient. Our study suggests that co-existing dominant plant species can display highly contrasting biomass allocations to different aboveground organs within and across species in response to limiting environmental resources within the same plant community. Such knowledge is important for understanding how community assembly, trait spectra, and ecological processes driven by the plant community vary across environmental gradients and among contrasting ecosystems. PMID:27270445

  11. The Influence of an Invasive Shrub, Buddleja Davidii on a Native Shrub, Griselinia Littoralis Transplanted into a New Zealand Floodplain Chronosequence

    EPA Science Inventory

    Griselinia littoralis, a native New Zealand shrub, was planted into a chronosequence (0 to 8 yrs since flooding) dominated by the non-indigenous shrub, Buddleja davidii in three New Zealand floodplains to determine to what extent facilitation and competitive inhibition may influe...

  12. The late-M dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bessell, M. S.

    1991-02-01

    Far-red spectra and VRIJHK photometry have been obtained for a sample of late-M dwarfs selected on the basis of large reduced red magnitudes from the LHS Catalog. Half of the stars in the three faintest 1 mag bins are late-M stars, the other red stars are metallic-hydride subdwarfs. Relations between various colors for the late-M dwarfs are investigated. Of all the colors I - K most reliably correlates with spectral type. FeH bands near 9900 A are clearly seen in the spectra of all dwarf stars later than M5. Two stars cooler than VB10, and similar in temperature to LHS2924 have been identified; both have H-alpha in emission and appear variable in magnitude and R - I color; one is a flare star. The other stars are of earlier spectral type and resemble W359 and VB8. The observed MI, I - K main sequence is in good agreement with the IG theoretical main sequence of Stringfellow, and the faintest stars could be about 0.09 solar mass red dwarfs or lower mass brown dwarfs.

  13. Induced abnormality in Mir- and Earth grown Super Dwarf wheat

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bubenheim, D. L.; Stieber, J.; Campbell, W. F.; Salisbury, F. B.; Levinski, M.; Sytchev, V.; Podolsky, I.; Chernova, L.; Pdolsky, I.

    2003-01-01

    Super-dwarf wheat grown on the Mir space station using the Svet "Greenhouse" exhibited morphological, metabolic and reproductive abnormalities compared with Earth-grown wheat. Of prominent importance were the abnormalities associated with reproductive ontogeny and the total absence of seed formation on Mir. Changes in the apical meristem associated with transition from the vegetative phase to floral initiation and development of the reproductive spike were all typical of 'Super-Dwarf' wheat up to the point of anthesis. Observation of ruptured anthers from the Mir-grown plants revealed what appeared to be normally developed pollen. These pollen gains, however, contained only one nuclei, while normal viable pollen is tri-nucleate. A potentially important difference in the flight experiment, compared with ground reference studies, was the presence of a high level of atmospheric ethylene (1,200 ppb). Ground studies conducted by exposing 'Super-Dwarf' wheat to ethylene just prior to anthesis resulted in manifestation of the same abnormalities observed in the space flight samples. c2002 Published by Elsevier Science Ltd on behalf of COSPAR.

  14. Do shrubs reduce the adverse effects of grazing on soil properties?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Eldridge, David J.; Beecham, Genevieve; Grace, James B.

    2015-01-01

    Increases in the density of woody plants are a global phenomenon in drylands, and large aggregations of shrubs, in particular, are regarded as being indicative of dysfunctional ecosystems. There is increasing evidence that overgrazing by livestock reduces ecosystem functions in shrublands, but that shrubs may buffer the negative effects of increasing grazing. We examined changes in water infiltration and nutrient concentrations in soils under shrubs and in their interspaces in shrublands in eastern Australia that varied in the intensity of livestock grazing. We used structural equation modelling to test whether shrubs might reduce the negative effects of overgrazing on infiltration and soil carbon and nitrogen (henceforth ‘soil nutrients’). Soils under shrubs and subject to low levels of grazing were more stable and had greater levels of soil nutrients. Shrubs had a direct positive effect on soil nutrients; but, grazing negatively affected nutrients by increasing soil bulk density. Structural equation modelling showed that shrubs had a direct positive effect on water flow under ponded conditions but also enhanced water flow, indirectly, through increased litter cover. Any positive effects of shrubs on water flow under low levels of grazing waned at high levels of grazing. Our results indicate that shrubs may reduce the adverse effects of grazing on soil properties. Specifically, shrubs could restrict access to livestock and therefore protect soils and plants beneath their canopies. Low levels of grazing are likely to ensure the retention of soil water and soil carbon and nitrogen in shrubland soils.

  15. Spatio-temporal patterns of ptarmigan occupancy relative to shrub cover in the Arctic

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Schmutz, Joel A.

    2014-01-01

    Rock and willow ptarmigan are abundant herbivores that require shrub habitats in arctic and alpine areas. Shrub expansion is likely to increase winter habitat availability for ptarmigan, which in turn influence shrub architecture and growth through browsing. Despite their ecological role in the Arctic, the distribution and movement patterns of ptarmigan are not well known, particularly in northern Alaska where shrub expansion is occurring. We used multi-season occupancy models to test whether ptarmigan occupancy varied within and among years, and the degree to which colonization and extinction probabilities were related to shrub cover and latitude. Aerial surveys were conducted from March to May in 2011 and April to May 2012 in a 21,230 km2 area in northeastern Alaska. In areas with at least 30 % shrub cover, the probability of colonization by ptarmigan was >0.90, indicating that moderate to extensive patches of shrubs (typically associated with riparian areas) had a high probability of becoming occupied by ptarmigan. Occupancy increased throughout the spring in both years, providing evidence that ptarmigan migrated from southern wintering areas to breeding areas north of the Brooks Range. Occupancy was higher in the moderate snow year than the high snow year, and this was likely due to higher shrub cover in the moderate snow year. Ptarmigan distribution and migration in the Arctic are linked to expanding shrub communities on a wide geographic scale, and these relationships may be shaping ptarmigan population dynamics, as well as rates and patterns of shrub expansion.

  16. A greener Greenland? Climatic potential and long-term constraints on future expansions of trees and shrubs.

    PubMed

    Normand, Signe; Randin, Christophe; Ohlemüller, Ralf; Bay, Christian; Høye, Toke T; Kjær, Erik D; Körner, Christian; Lischke, Heike; Maiorano, Luigi; Paulsen, Jens; Pearman, Peter B; Psomas, Achilleas; Treier, Urs A; Zimmermann, Niklaus E; Svenning, Jens-Christian

    2013-08-19

    Warming-induced expansion of trees and shrubs into tundra vegetation will strongly impact Arctic ecosystems. Today, a small subset of the boreal woody flora found during certain Plio-Pleistocene warm periods inhabits Greenland. Whether the twenty-first century warming will induce a re-colonization of a rich woody flora depends on the roles of climate and migration limitations in shaping species ranges. Using potential treeline and climatic niche modelling, we project shifts in areas climatically suitable for tree growth and 56 Greenlandic, North American and European tree and shrub species from the Last Glacial Maximum through the present and into the future. In combination with observed tree plantings, our modelling highlights that a majority of the non-native species find climatically suitable conditions in certain parts of Greenland today, even in areas harbouring no native trees. Analyses of analogous climates indicate that these conditions are widespread outside Greenland, thus increasing the likelihood of woody invasions. Nonetheless, we find a substantial migration lag for Greenland's current and future woody flora. In conclusion, the projected climatic scope for future expansions is strongly limited by dispersal, soil development and other disequilibrium dynamics, with plantings and unintentional seed dispersal by humans having potentially large impacts on spread rates.

  17. A greener Greenland? Climatic potential and long-term constraints on future expansions of trees and shrubs

    PubMed Central

    Normand, Signe; Randin, Christophe; Ohlemüller, Ralf; Bay, Christian; Høye, Toke T.; Kjær, Erik D.; Körner, Christian; Lischke, Heike; Maiorano, Luigi; Paulsen, Jens; Pearman, Peter B.; Psomas, Achilleas; Treier, Urs A.; Zimmermann, Niklaus E.; Svenning, Jens-Christian

    2013-01-01

    Warming-induced expansion of trees and shrubs into tundra vegetation will strongly impact Arctic ecosystems. Today, a small subset of the boreal woody flora found during certain Plio-Pleistocene warm periods inhabits Greenland. Whether the twenty-first century warming will induce a re-colonization of a rich woody flora depends on the roles of climate and migration limitations in shaping species ranges. Using potential treeline and climatic niche modelling, we project shifts in areas climatically suitable for tree growth and 56 Greenlandic, North American and European tree and shrub species from the Last Glacial Maximum through the present and into the future. In combination with observed tree plantings, our modelling highlights that a majority of the non-native species find climatically suitable conditions in certain parts of Greenland today, even in areas harbouring no native trees. Analyses of analogous climates indicate that these conditions are widespread outside Greenland, thus increasing the likelihood of woody invasions. Nonetheless, we find a substantial migration lag for Greenland's current and future woody flora. In conclusion, the projected climatic scope for future expansions is strongly limited by dispersal, soil development and other disequilibrium dynamics, with plantings and unintentional seed dispersal by humans having potentially large impacts on spread rates. PMID:23836785

  18. The Dusty Accretion of Polluted White Dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bonsor, A.; Farihi, J.; Wyatt, M. C.; van Lieshout, R.

    2017-03-01

    Infrared observations of polluted white dwarfs provide key insights into the accretion processes in action. The standard model for the observed infrared excesses is a flat, opaque, dust disc. The infrared observations are inconsistent with the presence of such a disc around all polluted white dwarfs. We discuss potential explanations for the absence of an infrared excess for many polluted white dwarfs.

  19. Heterozygote excess through life history stages in Cestrum miradorense Francey (Solanaceae), an endemic shrub in a fragmented cloud forest habitat.

    PubMed

    Reyes-Zepeda, F; González-Astorga, J; Montaña, C

    2013-01-01

    Comparisons of genetic diversity and population genetic structure among different life history stages provide important information on the effect of the different forces and micro-evolutionary processes that mould diversity and genetic structure after fragmentation. Here we assessed genetic diversity and population genetic structure using 32 allozymic loci in adults, seeds, seedlings and juveniles of eight populations of the micro-endemic shrub Cestrum miradorense in a highly fragmented cloud forest in central-eastern Mexico. We expected that due to its long history or rarity, this species may have endured the negative effects of fragmentation and would show moderate to high levels of genetic diversity. High genetic diversity (H(e) = 0.445 ± 0.03), heterozygote excess (F(IT) = -0.478 ± 0.034, F(IS) = -0.578 ± 0.023) and low population differentiation (F(ST) = 0.064 ± 0.011) were found. Seeds had higher genetic diversity (H(e) = 0.467 ± 0.05) than the later stages (overall mean for adults, seedlings and juveniles H(e) = 0.438 ± 0.08). High gene flow was observed despite the fact that the fragmentation process began more than 100 years ago. We conclude that the high genetic diversity was the result of natural selection, which favours heterozygote excess in all stages, coupled with a combination of a reproductive system and seed/pollen dispersal mechanisms that favour gene flow.

  20. Pluto: Dwarf planet 134340

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ksanfomality, L. V.

    2016-01-01

    In recent decades, investigations of Pluto with up-to-date astronomical instruments yielded results that have been generally confirmed by the New Horizons mission. In 2006, in Prague, the General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union (IAU) reclassified Pluto as a member of the dwarf planet category according to the criteria defined by the IAU for the term "planet". At the same time, interest in studies of Pluto was increasing, while the space investigations of Pluto were delayed. In 2006, the New Horizons Pluto spacecraft started its journey to Pluto. On July 14, 2015, the spacecraft, being in fly-by mode, made its closest approach to Pluto. The heterogeneities and properties of the surface and rarified atmosphere were investigated thoroughly. Due to the extreme remoteness of the spacecraft and the energy limitations, it will take 18 months to transmit the whole data volume. Along with the preliminary results of the New Horizons Pluto mission, this paper reviews the basics on Pluto and its moons acquired from the ground-based observations and with the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). There are only a few meteorite craters on the surfaces of Pluto and Charon, which distinctly marks them apart from such satellites of the giant planets as Ganymede and Callisto. The explanation is that the surface of Pluto is young: its age is estimated at less than 100 Myr. Ice glaciers of apparently a nitrogen nature were found. Nitrogen is also the main component of the atmosphere of Pluto. The planet demonstrates the signs of strong geologic activity, though the energy sources of these processes are unknown.

  1. How, Now, Brown Dwarfs?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brecher, Kenneth

    2009-01-01

    The vocabulary of astronomy is riddled with colorful names for stars, from red giants to blue stragglers. Objects with masses between roughly .01 and .1 solar masses are called "brown dwarfs". Do they - could they - ever actually appear brown? Color is not a one-dimensional physical parameter like wavelength. It is a complex, psychophysical phenomenon involving not only three degrees of freedom - hue (often incorrectly equated with "color"), saturation and brightness - but also observational context. The perceptual nature of color has been known since Newton wrote in his "Opticks” in 1704: "For the Rays to speak properly are not coloured. In them there is nothing else than a certain Power and disposition to stir up a Sensation of this or that Colour.” To most observers, the 2000 or so naked eye stars observable from the northern hemisphere all appear white, with the half dozen exceptions which look reddish/orange like Betelgeuse, Arcturus and Antares. But what color would Betelgeuse (effective temperature 3600 K) appear at a distance of, say, 100 times the Earth-Sun separation? Not red. In fact, it has a temperature about 40% higher than that of an ordinary incandescent light bulb. It would appear white (or yellowish)! Can a very cool radiating (emissive) object ever appear brown? What is brown anyway? It is not a primary or even secondary color. In this presentation, we will explore the nature and meaning of "brown” by the use of several physical and computer demonstrations developed as part of "Project LITE- Light Inquiry Through Experiments", an educational materials development project. These demonstrations show that an isolated thermally radiating object will never appear brown. Hence the term "Brown Dwarf” is as nonsensical as the phrase "How, Now, Brown Cow?". Project LITE is supported by the NSF through DUE Grant # 0715975.

  2. Adaptive responses reveal contemporary and future ecotypes in a desert shrub.

    PubMed

    Richardson, Bryce A; Kitchen, Stanley G; Pendleton, Rosemary L; Pendleton, Burton K; Germino, Matthew J; Rehfeldt, Gerald E; Meyer, Susan E

    2014-03-01

    Interacting threats to ecosystem function, including climate change, wildfire, and invasive species necessitate native plant restoration in desert ecosystems. However, native plant restoration efforts often remain unguided by ecological genetic information. Given that many ecosystems are in flux from climate change, restoration plans need to account for both contemporary and future climates when choosing seed sources. In this study we analyze vegetative responses, including mortality, growth, and carbon isotope ratios in two blackbrush (Coleogyne ramosissima) common gardens that included 26 populations from a range-wide collection. This shrub occupies ecotones between the warm and cold deserts of Mojave and Colorado Plateau ecoregions in western North America. The variation observed in the vegetative responses of blackbrush populations was principally explained by grouping populations by ecoregions and by regression with site-specific climate variables. Aridity weighted by winter minimum temperatures best explained vegetative responses; Colorado Plateau sites were usually colder and drier than Mojave sites. The relationship between climate and vegetative response was mapped within the boundaries of the species-climate space projected for the contemporary climate and for the decade surrounding 2060. The mapped ecological genetic pattern showed that genetic variation could be classified into cool-adapted and warm-adapted ecotypes, with populations often separated by steep dines. These transitions are predicted to occur in both the Mojave Desert and Colorado Plateau ecoregions. While under contemporary conditions the warm-adapted ecotype occupies the majority of climate space, climate projections predict that the cool-adapted ecotype could prevail as the dominant ecotype as the climate space of blackbrush expands into higher elevations and latitudes. This study provides the framework for delineating climate change-responsive seed transfer guidelines, which are needed

  3. Adaptive responses reveal contemporary and future ecotypes in a desert shrub

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Richardson, Bryce A.; Kitchen, Stanley G.; Pendleton, Rosemary L.; Pendleton, Burton K.; Germino, Matthew J.; Rehfeldt, Gerald E.; Meyer, Susan E.

    2014-01-01

    Interacting threats to ecosystem function, including climate change, wildfire, and invasive species necessitate native plant restoration in desert ecosystems. However, native plant restoration efforts often remain unguided by ecological genetic information. Given that many ecosystems are in flux from climate change, restoration plans need to account for both contemporary and future climates when choosing seed sources. In this study we analyze vegetative responses, including mortality, growth, and carbon isotope ratios in two blackbrush (Coleogyne ramosissima) common gardens that included 26 populations from a range-wide collection. This shrub occupies ecotones between the warm and cold deserts of Mojave and Colorado Plateau ecoregions in western North America. The variation observed in the vegetative responses of blackbrush populations was principally explained by grouping populations by ecoregions and by regression with site-specific climate variables. Aridity weighted by winter minimum temperatures best explained vegetative responses; Colorado Plateau sites were usually colder and drier than Mojave sites. The relationship between climate and vegetative response was mapped within the boundaries of the species–climate space projected for the contemporary climate and for the decade surrounding 2060. The mapped ecological genetic pattern showed that genetic variation could be classified into cool-adapted and warm-adapted ecotypes, with populations often separated by steep clines. These transitions are predicted to occur in both the Mojave Desert and Colorado Plateau ecoregions. While under contemporary conditions the warm-adapted ecotype occupies the majority of climate space, climate projections predict that the cool-adapted ecotype could prevail as the dominant ecotype as the climate space of blackbrush expands into higher elevations and latitudes. This study provides the framework for delineating climate change-responsive seed transfer guidelines, which are

  4. [Quality level assessment of lowly efficient Tamarix chinensis secondary shrubs in Laizhou Bay of Yellow River Delta].

    PubMed

    Xia, Jiang-Bao; Liu, Yu-Ting; Zhu, Jin-Fang; Xu, Jing-Wei; Lu, Zhao-Hua; Liu, Jing-Tao; Liu, Qing

    2013-06-01

    Taking the Tamarix chinensis secondary shrubs in Laizhou Bay of Yellow River Delta as test objects, and by using synthetic factor method, this paper studied the main factors causing the lowly efficiency of T. chinensis secondary shrubs as well as the main parameters for the classification of lowly efficient T. chinensis secondary shrubs. A total of 24 indices including shrubs growth and soil physical and chemical properties were selected to determine the main affecting factors and parameters in evaluating and classifying the lowly efficient shrubs. There were no obvious correlations between the indices reflecting the shrubs growth and soil quality, and thus, only using shrub growth index to reflect the lowly efficiency level of T. chinensis was not enough, and it would be necessary to combine with soil quality factors to make a comprehensive evaluation. The principal factors reflecting the quality level of lowly efficient T. chinensis shrubs included soil salt content and moisture content, stand age, single tree's aboveground stem, leaf biomass, and basal diameter, followed by soil density, porosity, and soil nutrient status. The lowly efficient T. chinensis shrubs in the Bay could be classified into five types, namely, shrub with growth potential, slightly low quality shrub, moderately lowly efficient shrub, moderately low quality and lowly efficient shrub, and seriously low quality and lowly efficient shrub. The main features, low efficiency causes, and management measures of these shrubs were discussed based on the mean cluster value.

  5. Induced Abnormality In Mir- and Earth-Grown Super Dwarf Wheat

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bubenheim, David L.; Stieber, Joseph; Campbell, William F.; Salisbury, Frank B.; Levinski, Margarita; Sytchev, Vladimir; Podolsky, Igor; Chernova, Lola; Ivanova, Irene; Kliss, Mark (Technical Monitor)

    1998-01-01

    Super-dwarf wheat grown on the Mir space station using the Svet "Greenhouse" exhibited morphological, metabolic and reproductive abnormalities compared with normal wheat. Of prominent importance were the abnormalities associated with reproductive ontogeny and the total absence of seed formation on Mir. Changes in the apical meristem associated with transition from the vegetative phase to floral initiation and development of the reproductive spike were all typical of 'Super Dwarf' wheat up to the point of anthesis. Observation of ruptured anthers from the Mir-grown plants revealed what appeared to be normally developed pollen. These pollen grains however, contain only one nucleus, while normal viable pollen is trinucleate. A potentially important difference in the flight experiment, compared with ground reference studies, was identified - a high level of atmospheric ethylene (1200 ppb). Ground studies conducted exposing "Super-dwarf" wheat to ethylene at just prior to anthesis resulted in manifestation of the same abnormalities observed in the space flight samples.

  6. Adapting to alcohol: Dwarf hamster (Phodopus campbelli) ethanol consumption, sensitivity, and hoard fermentation.

    PubMed

    Lupfer, Gwen; Murphy, Eric S; Merculieff, Zoe; Radcliffe, Kori; Duddleston, Khrystyne N

    2015-06-01

    Ethanol consumption and sensitivity in many species are influenced by the frequency with which ethanol is encountered in their niches. In Experiment 1, dwarf hamsters (Phodopus campbelli) with ad libitum access to food and water consumed high amounts of unsweetened alcohol solutions. Their consumption of 15%, but not 30%, ethanol was reduced when they were fed a high-fat diet; a high carbohydrate diet did not affect ethanol consumption. In Experiment 2, intraperitoneal injections of ethanol caused significant dose-related motor impairment. Much larger doses administered orally, however, had no effect. In Experiment 3, ryegrass seeds, a common food source for wild dwarf hamsters, supported ethanol fermentation. Results of these experiments suggest that dwarf hamsters may have adapted to consume foods in which ethanol production naturally occurs.

  7. An examination of the function of male flowers in an andromonoecious shrub Capparis spinosa.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Tao; Tan, Dun-Yan

    2009-03-01

    The pollen donor and pollinator attractor hypotheses are explanations for the functions of the male flowers of andromonoecious plants. We tested these two hypotheses in the andromonoecious shrub Capparis spinosa L. (Capparaceae) and confirmed that pollen production and cumulative volume and sugar concentration of nectar do not differ between male and perfect flowers. However, male flowers produced larger anthers, larger pollen grains and smaller ovaries than perfect flowers. Observations on pollinators indicated that two major pollinators (Xylocopa valga Gerst and Proxylocopa sinensis Wu) did not discriminate between flower morphs and that they transferred pollen grains a similar distance. However, there were more seeds per fruit following hand pollination with pollen from male flowers than from perfect flowers. Individuals of C. spinosa with a larger floral display (i.e. bearing more flowers) received more pollen grains on the stigma of perfect flowers. Female reproductive success probably is not limited by pollen. These results indicate that male flowers of C. spinosa save resources for female function and that they primarily serve to attract pollinators as pollen donors.

  8. Flower size and longevity influence florivory in the large-flowered shrub Cistus ladanifer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teixido, Alberto L.; Méndez, Marcos; Valladares, Fernando

    2011-09-01

    Plants with larger and longer-lived flowers receive more pollinator visits and increase reproductive success, though may also suffer more from antagonistic interactions with animals. Florivores can reduce fruit and seed production, so selection on flower size, floral longevity and/or number of flowers may thus be determined by the relative effects of both pollinators and florivores. In this study flowers of Cistus ladanifer, a large-flowered Mediterranean shrub, were monitored to evaluate the effects of flower size, floral longevity and number of flowers on levels of florivory in four populations. Number of flowers was variable but did not differ among populations. Both flower size and floral longevity of C. ladanifer showed broad variation and significantly differed among populations. Overall, 7% of flowers suffered attack by florivores, which were mainly ants picking the stamens and beetles consuming petals and pollen. Within-populations, larger and longer-lived flowers tended to be affected by florivores more frequently. The low overall incidence of florivores and its lack of between-population variation suggest that florivory may not influence intraspecific variation of these floral traits. However, moderate florivory levels on the largest and longest-lived flowers open the possibility of exerting selection towards smaller and shorter-lived flowers in some of the populations studied.

  9. Sex-specific reproductive components and pollination ecology in the subdioecious shrub Fuchsia microphylla.

    PubMed

    Cuevas, E; Jiménez, R; Lopezaraiza-Mikel, M

    2014-11-01

    In subdioecious populations, functional female, male and hermaphrodite individuals coexist. Subdioecy may be a transitional state towards dioecy or a breakdown of dioecy, although lability in sex expression may maintain subdioecy as a stable condition. To better understand the ecological aspects involved in sex ratio dynamics and breeding system evolution, we studied the pollination and female fitness components of female and hermaphrodite individuals of the subdioecious shrub Fuchsia microphylla. In two natural populations at the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt we estimated female frequency and several reproductive components of female and hermaphrodite plants under natural pollination and experimental pollination treatments. Average female frequency was 42%, and on average, 42.5% of hermaphrodites produced fruits. Female plants showed a 17-fold female fertility advantage over hermaphrodites through increased fruit production, as the number of seeds and germination rates did not differ between morphs. Hermaphrodite flowers were larger, with similar nectar production and concentration to female flowers, and pollinators did not show consistent morph preferences. Some hermaphrodites produced fruits autonomously, and female flowers excluded from pollinators produced fruits putatively by apomixis. Fruit production in hermaphrodites, but not in females, was related to height, suggesting increased investment of hermaphrodites in the female function at higher resource status. For sex ratios to be at equilibrium, the female fertility advantage should be reduced about eightfold. However, it may be that hermaphrodites are maintained by producing fruits at no cost to the male function at higher resource status, as the gender plasticity hypothesis proposes.

  10. The neotropical shrub Lupinus elegans, fromtemperate forests, may not adapt to climate change.

    PubMed

    Soto-Correa, J C; Sáenz-Romero, C; Lindig-Cisneros, R; de la Barrera, E

    2013-05-01

    Considering that their distribution is limited to altitudinal gradients along mountains that are likely to become warmer and drier, climate change poses an increased threat to temperate forest species from tropical regions. We studied whether the understorey shrub Lupinus elegans, endemic to temperate forests of west-central Mexico, will be able to withstand the projected temperature increase under seven climate change scenarios. Seeds were collected along an altitudinal gradient and grown in a shade-house over 7 months before determining their temperature tolerance as electrolyte leakage. The plants from colder sites tolerated lower temperatures, i.e. the temperature at which half of the maximum electrolyte leakage occurred (LT50), ranged from −6.4 ± 0.7 to −2.4 ± 0.3 °C. In contrast, no pattern was found for tolerance to high temperature (LT50 average 42.8 ± 0.3 °C). The climate change scenarios considered here consistently estimated an increase in air temperature during the present century that was higher for the maximum air temperature than for the mean or minimum. In particular, the anomaly from the normal maximum air temperature at the study region ranged from 2.8 °C by 2030 to 5.8 °C by 2090. In this respect, the inability of L. elegans to adapt to increasingly higher temperatures found here, in addition to a possible inhibition of reproduction caused by warmer winters, may limit its future distribution.

  11. Secondary Airflow Structure around Clustered Shrubs and Its Significance for Vegetated Dune Evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Luo, Wanyin; Dong, Zhibao; Qian, Guangqiang; Lu, Junfeng

    2016-04-01

    Shrubs have an important significance in aeolian processes due to their disturbance of the local airflow. In the formation of vegetated dunes, there is an iterative interaction between shrub geometry, the structure of the secondary airflow, and the interaction between neighboring shrubs. Understanding the dynamics of vegetated dunes thus requires an insight into the airflow fields around shrubs. Based on aerodynamic and aeolian sand physics theory, this project measured the complex secondary flow field and aeolian sand deposition pattern around single and cluster shrubs with varied densities (i.e., 0.05, 0.08, 0.15, 0.20) and gap ratios (the ratio of the gap spacing between the shrub models to the center-to-center distance for the shrub models, ranged from 1.1 to 1.8 with side-by-side arrangement and 1.2 to 4.3 with tandem arrangement) using the particle image velocimetry system through wind tunnle simulation. The relationship between the secondary airflow structure and the shrub's porosity and arrangement was analyzed quantitatively. Research results revealed that porosity (density) is the key parameter to affect the flow patterns around single shrub. Compared to solid obstacles, bleed flow through the shrubs has great influence on the secondary airflow patterns around itself. Under cluster modes, the distance between two adjacent shrubs has great influence on flow field structures around them. The flow patterns around two side-by-side arranged shrubs can be classified into three kinds of modes, that is: single-bluff-body, biased flow pattern and parallel vortex streets. The flow patterns around two tandem arranged shrubs can be classified into three regimes, that is: the extended body regime, reattachment regime and co-shedding regime. The "shadow zone" with low velocity in the lee of shrubs is the optimal position for sand deposition, but its form, size and orientation would varied with the shrub porosity and gap ratio between them. With the increase of the gap

  12. Shrub encroachment can reverse desertification in semi-arid Mediterranean grasslands.

    PubMed

    Maestre, Fernando T; Bowker, Matthew A; Puche, María D; Belén Hinojosa, M; Martínez, Isabel; García-Palacios, Pablo; Castillo, Andrea P; Soliveres, Santiago; Luzuriaga, Arántzazu L; Sánchez, Ana M; Carreira, José A; Gallardo, Antonio; Escudero, Adrián

    2009-09-01

    The worldwide phenomenon of shrub encroachment in grass-dominated dryland ecosystems is commonly associated with desertification. Studies of the purported desertification effects associated with shrub encroachment are often restricted to relatively few study areas, and document a narrow range of possible impacts upon biota and ecosystem processes. We conducted a study in degraded Mediterranean grasslands dominated by Stipa tenacissima to simultaneously evaluate the effects of shrub encroachment on the structure and composition of multiple biotic community components, and on various indicators of ecosystem function. Shrub encroachment enhanced vascular plant richness, biomass of fungi, actinomycetes and other bacteria, and was linked with greater soil fertility and N mineralization rates. While shrub encroachment may be a widespread phenomenon in drylands, an interpretation that this is an expression of desertification is not universal. Our results suggest that shrub establishment may be an important step in the reversal of desertification processes in the Mediterranean region.

  13. [Contribution of soil seed bank to the regeneration of damaged vegetation on floodplain].

    PubMed

    Wang, Zeng-ru; Xu, Hai-liang; Yin, Lin-ke; Li, Ji-mei; Zhang, Zhan-jiang; Li, Yuan

    2008-12-01

    A field germination experiment of soil seed bank was carried out on two typical floodplains in the lower reaches of Tarim River, and a comparison was made between the soil seed banks and corresponding seedling banks on the two floodplains, aimed to assess the contribution of soil seed bank to the regeneration of damaged vegetation. The results showed that there were 12 plant species in the soil seed banks, and the life forms were mainly perennial herbs and shrubs. The soil seed banks had a density of 282.5 seeds m(-2) and 173.2 seeds x m(-2), and the seeds in top soil (0-2 cm) accounted for 76.9% and 71.0% of the total, respectively. The soil seed banks had significant effects on the seedlings species composition and density, and 84.7% and 99.4% of the seedlings on the two floodplains were emerged from corresponding soil seed banks. The similarity coefficient between soil seed bank and seedling bank of the two floodplains was 0.72 and 0.63, respectively, and there existed significant positive correlation between seedling density and soil seed bank density, illustrating that soil seed bank made important contribution to the natural regeneration of vegetation.

  14. Trees, more than shrubs, protect against soil erosion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wendel, JoAnna

    2014-05-01

    Soil erosion and saltation—the transport of ground particles by wind—are significant producers of dust and can damage crops or lead to nutrient-poor soil in semiarid regions. These regions are particularly vulnerable to climate warming and increased human activity, which can exacerbate erosion and induce dust bowl-like conditions. Previous research and observations have shown that vegetation such as shrubs and trees can reduce soil erosion, but existing models do not account for variations in wind direction or strength.

  15. Mutational effects of space flight on Zea mays seeds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mei, M.; Qiu, Y.; He, Y.; Bucker, H.; Yang, C. H.

    1994-01-01

    The growth and development of more than 500 Zea mays seeds flown on Long Duration Exposure Facility (LDEF) were studied. Somatic mutations, including white-yellow stripes on leaves, dwarfing, change of leaf sheath color or seedling color were observed in plants developed from these seeds. When the frequency of white-yellow formation was used as the endpoint and compared with data from ground based studies, the dose to which maize seeds might be exposed during the flight was estimated to be equivalent to 635 cGy of gamma rays. Seeds from one particular holder gave a high mutation frequency and a wide mutation spectrum. White-yellow stripes on leaves were also found in some of the inbred progenies from plants displayed somatic mutation. Electron microscopy studies showed that the damage of chloroplast development in the white-yellow stripe on leaves was similar between seeds flown on LDEF and that irradiated by accelerated heavy ions on ground.

  16. A Multi-species Assessment of Post-dispersal Seed Predation in the Central Chilean Andes

    PubMed Central

    MUÑOZ, ALEJANDRO A.; CAVIERES, LOHENGRIN A.

    2006-01-01

    • Background and Aims Post-dispersal seed predation in alpine communities has received little attention despite evidence that seeds removed by granivores can decrease plant recruitment into ecosystems. Moreover, few studies have assessed the effects of removal of seeds of a range of species after dispersal on the seeds remaining in ecosystems. A comparison was made of the magnitude of seed removal by ants and birds of nine different shrubby-, herbaceous- and cushion-plant species in the central Chilean Andes in order to assess the interactions between birds, ants and wind, and the types of seeds. • Methods A total of 324 soil-covered plates, each containing 50 seeds of one species, were placed in the field at an altitude of 2700 m and assigned to one of four treatments: control, exclusion of ants, birds, and both. The design also allowed the effects of wind to be assessed. Seed removal from plates was monitored over 20 d. • Key Results Mean accumulative seed removal by granivores averaged over all nine species combined was 25 %. However, large differences between species were evident, with limited seed removal (3–11 %) in three herbaceous species (Alstroemeria pallida, Sisyrinchium arenarium, Pozoa coriacea), moderate (18–33 %) in five species, including a shrub (Chuquiraga oppositifolia), two herbs (Taraxacum officinale, Rhodophiala rhodolirion), and two cushion-plants (Laretia acaulis, Azorella monantha), and substantial (78 %) in the shrub Anarthrophyllum cumingii. The magnitudes of losses caused by birds compared with ants did not differ for the majority of species, although removal by birds was greater than by ants in A. cumingii, and smaller for C. oppositifolia. • Conclusions Post-dispersal seed removal is shown to be an important cause of decreased potential plant species recruitment into alpine ecosystems. The substantial differences in the magnitude of seed losses to ants and birds demonstrate the need for evaluation of seed removal

  17. Brown dwarfs as dark galactic halos

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Adams, Fred C.; Walker, Terry P.

    1990-01-01

    The possibility that the dark matter in galactic halos can consist of brown dwarf stars is considered. The radiative signature for such halos consisting solely of brown dwarfs is calculated, and the allowed range of brown dwarf masses, the initial mass function (IMF), the stellar properties, and the density distribution of the galactic halo are discussed. The prediction emission from the halo is compared with existing observations. It is found that, for any IMF of brown dwarfs below the deuterium burning limit, brown dwarf halos are consistent with observations. Brown dwarf halos cannot, however, explain the recently observed near-IR background. It is shown that future satellite missions will either detect brown dwarf halos or place tight constraints on the allowed range of the IMF.

  18. Short-term effects of experimental fires on a Mojave Desert seed bank

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Esque, Todd C.; Young, James A.; Tracy, C. Richard

    2010-01-01

    A Mojave Desert shrub community was experimentally burned to understand changes in seed bank of desert annual plant species in response to wildfire. Seed mortality ranged from 55 to 80%, and fire caused significant losses of native and alien annual seeds. Schismus arabicus, Schismus barbatus, Bromus madritensis, Bromus tectorum, Erodium cicutarium and Plantago spp. made up >95% of the seed bank. Bromus spp. and Plantago spp. had proportionately greater mortality of seeds than did Schismus spp. and E. cicutarium. Schismus spp. can be lodged into soil cracks thus avoiding lethal temperatures. E. cicutarium has a self-drilling mechanism that places the seeds at greater depth in the soil. Greater seed mortality occurred beneath shrub canopies than interspaces for most species (Plantago, spp., Bromus spp., and E. cicutarium), but microsite had little effect on Schismus spp. Fire reduced the perennial Ambrosia dumosa densities under canopies. Fire reduced the mean number of species found in samples by about one species per plot and no species was extirpated on experimental plots. The relative abundances of common species did not change dramatically as a result of fire or microsite, however; seed densities varied by treatment and affected interpretations of species compositions.

  19. Demise of spiny hopsage shrubs following summer wildfire: an authentic record

    SciTech Connect

    Rickard, W.H.; McShane, M.C.

    1984-01-01

    Spiny hopsage, Grayia spinosa, shrubs growing in a plant community dominated by greasewood, Sarcobatus vermiculatus, shrubs were destroyed by a summer wildfire. In the first season after the burn, greasewood shrubs sprouted, and by April of the second spring season, greasewood had restored about one-half of its preburn canopy cover. Spiny hopsage shrubs did not sprout and their demise is attributed to stressed growing conditions imposed by an alkaline-sodic rooting substrate. The demise of spiny hopsage would likely have gone unnoticed were it not for the existence of a permanently marked study plot. 11 references, 1 table.

  20. Disentangling the effects of shrubs and herbivores on tree regeneration in a dry Chaco forest (Argentina).

    PubMed

    Tálamo, Andrés; Barchuk, Alicia H; Garibaldi, Lucas A; Trucco, Carlos E; Cardozo, Silvana; Mohr, Federico

    2015-07-01

    Successful persistence of dry forests depends on tree regeneration, which depends on a balance of complex biotic interactions. In particular, the relative importance and interactive effects of shrubs and herbivores on tree regeneration are unclear. In a manipulative study, we investigated if thornless shrubs have a direct net effect, an indirect positive effect mediated by livestock, and/or an indirect negative effect mediated by small vertebrates on tree regeneration of two key species of Chaco forest (Argentina). In a spatial association study, we also explored the existence of net positive interactions from thorny and thornless shrubs. The number of Schinopsis lorentzii seedlings was highest under artificial shade with native herbivores and livestock excluded. Even excluding livestock, no seedlings were found with natural conditions (native herbivores present with natural shade or direct sunlight) at the end of the experiment. Surprisingly, seedling recruitment was not enhanced under thornless shrubs, because there was a complementary positive effect of shade and interference. Moreover, thornless shrubs had neither positive nor negative effects on regeneration of S. lorentzii. Regeneration of Aspidosperma quebracho-blanco was minimal in all treatments. In agreement with the experiment, spatial distributions of saplings of both tree species were independent of thornless shrubs, but positively associated with thorny shrubs. Our results suggest that in general thornless shrubs may have a negligible effect and thorny shrubs a net positive effect on tree regeneration in dry forests. These findings provide a conceptual framework for testing the impact of biotic interactions on seedling recruitment in other dry forests.

  1. Greater effect of increasing shrub height on winter versus summer soil temperature

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Paradis, Mélissa; Lévesque, Esther; Boudreau, Stéphane

    2016-08-01

    Shrub expansion is increasingly observed in arctic and subarctic environments. The development of shrub structure may significantly impact the abiotic environment at the local scale. Our objective was to reconstruct the development of the vertical structure of Betula glandulosa Michx. and to evaluate its effects on winter and summer soil temperature and on snow depth. Stratified sampling of the shrub revealed that shrub biomass distribution followed a similar pattern in stands of contrasting heights. Woody biomass was maximal in the lower stratum and relatively stable in the intermediate strata, while the foliar biomass tracked the vertical development of the shrub structure. Dendrochronological analysis revealed that shrub stands are relatively young; most of the dominant stems started their development after 1990. Shrub height was positively associated with both the dominant stem age and its vertical growth rate. Temperature differences among sites were greater during winter (ca 10 °C) than during summer (ca 2 °C), while the sum of freezing degree-days varied from 680 °C to 2125 °C. Shrub height was the most plausible variable explaining snow depth, winter ground level temperature and the sum of freezing degree-days. However, woody biomass in the 30-40 cm strata best explained summer ground level temperature. Our results suggest that the development of a shrub structure will have far-reaching consequences on the abiotic environment of subarctic ecosystems.

  2. Influence of shrub encroachment on the soil microbial community composition of remnant hill prairies.

    PubMed

    Yannarell, Anthony C; Menning, Sarah E; Beck, Alyssa M

    2014-05-01

    Hill prairies are remnant grasslands perched on the bluffs of major river valleys, and because their steep slopes make them unsuitable for traditional row crop agriculture, they have some of the lowest levels of anthropogenic disturbance of any prairie ecosystems in the Midwestern USA. However, many decades of fire suppression have allowed for shrub encroachment from the surrounding forests. While shrub encroachment of grasslands can modify soil respiration rates and nutrient storage, it is not known whether shrubs also alter the community composition of soil microorganisms. We conducted transect sampling of nine different hill prairie remnants showing varying degrees of shrub encroachment, and we used DNA-based community profiling (automated ribosomal intergenic spacer analysis) to characterize the composition of bacterial and fungal communities in the open prairie habitat, the shrub-encroached border, and the surrounding forest. While both bacterial and fungal communities showed statistically significant variation across these habitats, their predominant patterns were different. Bacterial communities of forest soils were distinct from those of the open prairie and the shrub-encroached areas, while fungal communities of the open prairie were distinct from those of the forest and the shrub-encroached border. Shrub encroachment significantly altered the community composition of soil fungal communities. Furthermore, fungal communities of heavily encroached prairie remnants more closely resembled those of the surrounding forest than those of lightly encroached prairies. Thus, shrub encroachment can cause soil fungi to shift from a "grassland" community to a "woody" community, with potential consequences for soil processes and plant-microbe interactions.

  3. Shrub encroachment affects mammalian carnivore abundance and species richness in semiarid rangelands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blaum, Niels; Rossmanith, Eva; Popp, Alexander; Jeltsch, Florian

    2007-01-01

    Shrub encroachment due to overgrazing has led to dramatic changes of savanna landscapes and is considered to be one of the most threatening forms of rangeland degradation e.g. via habitat fragmentation. Mammalian carnivores are particularly vulnerable to local extinction in fragmented landscapes. However, our understanding of how shrub encroachment affects mammalian carnivores is poor. Here we investigated the relative sensitivities of ten native carnivores to different levels of shrub cover ranging from low (<5%) to high shrub cover (>25%) in 20 southern Kalahari rangeland sites. Relative abundance of carnivores was monitored along 40 sand transects (5 m × 250 m) for each site. Our results show that increasing shrub cover affects carnivore species differently. African wild cats, striped polecats, cape foxes and suricates were negatively affected, whereas we found hump-shaped responses for yellow mongooses, bat-eared foxes and small-spotted genets with maximum abundance at shrub covers between 10 and 18%. In contrast, black-backed jackals, slender mongooses and small spotted cats were not significantly affected by increasing shrub cover. However, a negative impact of high shrub cover above 18% was congruent for all species. We conclude that intermediate shrub cover (10-18%) in savanna landscapes sustain viable populations of small carnivores.

  4. Mammalian herbivores confer resilience of Arctic shrub-dominated ecosystems to changing climate.

    PubMed

    Kaarlejärvi, Elina; Hoset, Katrine S; Olofsson, Johan

    2015-09-01

    Climate change is resulting in a rapid expansion of shrubs in the Arctic. This expansion has been shown to be reinforced by positive feedbacks, and it could thus set the ecosystem on a trajectory toward an alternate, more productive regime. Herbivores, on the other hand, are known to counteract the effects of simultaneous climate warming on shrub biomass. However, little is known about the impact of herbivores on resilience of these ecosystems, that is, the capacity of a system to absorb disturbance and still remain in the same regime, retaining the same function, structure, and feedbacks. Here, we investigated how herbivores affect resilience of shrub-dominated systems to warming by studying the change of shrub biomass after a cessation of long-term experimental warming in a forest-tundra ecotone. As predicted, warming increased the biomass of shrubs, and in the absence of herbivores, shrub biomass in tundra continued to increase 4 years after cessation of the artificial warming, indicating that positive effects of warming on plant growth may persist even over a subsequent colder period. Herbivores contributed to the resilience of these systems by returning them back to the original low-biomass regime in both forest and tundra habitats. These results support the prediction that higher shrub biomass triggers positive feedbacks on soil processes and microclimate, which enable maintaining the rapid shrub growth even in colder climates. Furthermore, the results show that in our system, herbivores facilitate the resilience of shrub-dominated ecosystems to climate warming.

  5. Range Expansion of Moose in Arctic Alaska Linked to Warming and Increased Shrub Habitat.

    PubMed

    Tape, Ken D; Gustine, David D; Ruess, Roger W; Adams, Layne G; Clark, Jason A

    2016-01-01

    Twentieth century warming has increased vegetation productivity and shrub cover across northern tundra and treeline regions, but effects on terrestrial wildlife have not been demonstrated on a comparable scale. During this period, Alaskan moose (Alces alces gigas) extended their range from the boreal forest into tundra riparian shrub habitat; similar extensions have been observed in Canada (A. a. andersoni) and Eurasia (A. a. alces). Northern moose distribution is thought to be limited by forage availability above the snow in late winter, so the observed increase in shrub habitat could be causing the northward moose establishment, but a previous hypothesis suggested that hunting cessation triggered moose establishment. Here, we use recent changes in shrub cover and empirical relationships between shrub height and growing season temperature to estimate available moose habitat in Arctic Alaska c. 1860. We estimate that riparian shrubs were approximately 1.1 m tall c. 1860, greatly reducing the available forage above the snowpack, compared to 2 m tall in 2009. We believe that increases in riparian shrub habitat after 1860 allowed moose to colonize tundra regions of Alaska hundreds of kilometers north and west of previous distribution limits. The northern shift in the distribution of moose, like that of snowshoe hares, has been in response to the spread of their shrub habitat in the Arctic, but at the same time, herbivores have likely had pronounced impacts on the structure and function of these shrub communities. These northward range shifts are a bellwether for other boreal species and their associated predators.

  6. Shrub line advance in Arctic and alpine tundra of the Yukon Territory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Myers-Smith, I. H.; Hik, D.

    2010-12-01

    Growing evidence indicates an expansion of canopy-forming woody shrubs up mountain slopes and northward into Arctic tundra. The correlation between warming and greening has been used to link climate change with shrub expansion; however, the exact mechanisms driving observed increases in canopy-forming shrubs are probably more complex. Shrub expansion that results in a change in canopy cover may modify the ecology of tundra ecosystems by changing understory plant composition, soil thermal dynamics, surface albedo, nutrient turnover times and carbon storage. We surveyed the abundance of all tundra willow species (Salix spp.) growing at three sites in the Yukon Territory: the mountains of the Kluane Region, the Richardson Mountains, and on Qikiqtaruk - Herschel Island in the Beaufort Sea. At the two mountainous sites, we collected sections from the largest stem of willow shrubs at shrub line (the maximum elevation at which canopy-forming shrubs grow) and below shrub line (at approximately 50% shrub cover) in a total of 16 valleys. At the coastal site we collected samples from each of the 4 vegetation types: the alluvial fan, ridges, tussock tundra and disturbed terrain. Shrub stems were thin-sectioned using a microtome, photographed with a microscope and ring widths were measured from the digital images. We compared age distributions of willow individuals at and below shrub line and found younger populations at higher elevations, particularly on warm, south-facing aspects. Younger willows at shrub line and a lack of significant mortality in the field surveys indicate that shrubs have advanced up slope at the mountainous sites. Photographic and long-term plot data indicate increases in cover and height of willow shrub patches at the coastal site. We compared growth rings to regional weather data, and found positive correlations between annual growth and summer temperatures. Our results indicate that willows grew most in years with a warm June and July. This evidence of

  7. Flower and fruit production of understory shrubs in western Washington and Oregon

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Wender, B.; Harrington, C.; Tappeiner, J. C.

    2004-01-01

    We observed flower and fruit production for nine understory shrub species in western Washington and Oregon and examined the relationships between shrub reproductive output and plant size, plant age, site factors, and overstory density to determine the factors that control flowering or fruiting in understory shrubs. In Washington, 50 or more shrubs or microplots (for rhizomatous species) were sampled for each of eight species. The variables examined were more useful for explaining abundance of flowers or fruit on shrubs than they were for explaining the probability that a shrub would produce flowers or fruit. Plant size was consistently the most useful predictor of flower/fruit abundance in all species; plant age was also a good predictor of abundance and was strongly correlated with plant size. Site variables (e.g., slope) and overstory competition variables (e.g., presence/absence of a canopy gap) also helped explain flower/fruit abundance for some species. At two Oregon sites, the responses of five species to four levels of thinning were observed for 2-4 yr (15 shrubs or microplots per treatment per year). Thinning increased the probability and abundance of flowering/fruiting for two species, had no effect on one species, and responses for two other species were positive but inconsistent between sites or from year to year. We believe reducing overstory density or creating canopy gaps may be useful tools for enhancing shrub size and vigor, thus, increasing the probability and abundance of fruiting in some understory shrub species.

  8. Range Expansion of Moose in Arctic Alaska Linked to Warming and Increased Shrub Habitat

    PubMed Central

    Tape, Ken D.

    2016-01-01

    Twentieth century warming has increased vegetation productivity and shrub cover across northern tundra and treeline regions, but effects on terrestrial wildlife have not been demonstrated on a comparable scale. During this period, Alaskan moose (Alces alces gigas) extended their range from the boreal forest into tundra riparian shrub habitat; similar extensions have been observed in Canada (A. a. andersoni) and Eurasia (A. a. alces). Northern moose distribution is thought to be limited by forage availability above the snow in late winter, so the observed increase in shrub habitat could be causing the northward moose establishment, but a previous hypothesis suggested that hunting cessation triggered moose establishment. Here, we use recent changes in shrub cover and empirical relationships between shrub height and growing season temperature to estimate available moose habitat in Arctic Alaska c. 1860. We estimate that riparian shrubs were approximately 1.1 m tall c. 1860, greatly reducing the available forage above the snowpack, compared to 2 m tall in 2009. We believe that increases in riparian shrub habitat after 1860 allowed moose to colonize tundra regions of Alaska hundreds of kilometers north and west of previous distribution limits. The northern shift in the distribution of moose, like that of snowshoe hares, has been in response to the spread of their shrub habitat in the Arctic, but at the same time, herbivores have likely had pronounced impacts on the structure and function of these shrub communities. These northward range shifts are a bellwether for other boreal species and their associated predators. PMID:27074023

  9. Irregular Dwarf Galaxy IC 1613

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    Ultraviolet image (left) and visual image (right) of the irregular dwarf galaxy IC 1613. Low surface brightness galaxies, such as IC 1613, are more easily detected in the ultraviolet because of the low background levels compared to visual wavelengths.

  10. The Physics of White Dwarfs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Van Horn, Hugh M.

    1979-01-01

    Describes the current understanding of the structure and evolution of the white dwarf stars that was gained as a result of the increasingly sensitive and detailed astronomical observations coupled with calculations of the properties of matter under extreme conditions. (Author/GA)

  11. Project SEED.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chemical and Engineering News, 1986

    1986-01-01

    Reports on Project SEED (Summer Educational Experience for the Disadvantaged) a project in which high school students from low-income families work in summer jobs in a variety of academic, industrial, and government research labs. The program introduces the students to career possibilities in chemistry and to the advantages of higher education.…

  12. THREE NEW ECLIPSING WHITE-DWARF-M-DWARF BINARIES DISCOVERED IN A SEARCH FOR TRANSITING PLANETS AROUND M-DWARFS

    SciTech Connect

    Law, Nicholas M.; Kraus, Adam L.; Street, Rachel; Fulton, Benjamin J.; Shporer, Avi; Lister, Tim; Hillenbrand, Lynne A.; Baranec, Christoph; Bui, Khanh; Davis, Jack T. C.; Dekany, Richard G.; Kulkarni, S. R.; Ofek, Eran O.; Bloom, Joshua S.; Cenko, S. Bradley; Filippenko, Alexei V.; Burse, Mahesh P.; Das, H. K.; Kasliwal, Mansi M.; Nugent, Peter; and others

    2012-10-01

    We present three new eclipsing white-dwarf/M-dwarf binary systems discovered during a search for transiting planets around M-dwarfs. Unlike most known eclipsing systems of this type, the optical and infrared emission is dominated by the M-dwarf components, and the systems have optical colors and discovery light curves consistent with being Jupiter-radius transiting planets around early M-dwarfs. We detail the PTF/M-dwarf transiting planet survey, part of the Palomar Transient Factory (PTF). We present a graphics processing unit (GPU)-based box-least-squares search for transits that runs approximately 8 Multiplication-Sign faster than similar algorithms implemented on general purpose systems. For the discovered systems, we decompose low-resolution spectra of the systems into white-dwarf and M-dwarf components, and use radial velocity measurements and cooling models to estimate masses and radii for the white dwarfs. The systems are compact, with periods between 0.35 and 0.45 days and semimajor axes of approximately 2 R{sub Sun} (0.01 AU). The M-dwarfs have masses of approximately 0.35 M{sub Sun }, and the white dwarfs have hydrogen-rich atmospheres with temperatures of around 8000 K and have masses of approximately 0.5 M{sub Sun }. We use the Robo-AO laser guide star adaptive optics system to tentatively identify one of the objects as a triple system. We also use high-cadence photometry to put an upper limit on the white-dwarf radius of 0.025 R{sub Sun} (95% confidence) in one of the systems. Accounting for our detection efficiency and geometric factors, we estimate that 0.08%{sub -0.05%}{sup +0.10%} (90% confidence) of M-dwarfs are in these short-period, post-common-envelope white-dwarf/M-dwarf binaries where the optical light is dominated by the M-dwarf. The lack of detections at shorter periods, despite near-100% detection efficiency for such systems, suggests that binaries including these relatively low-temperature white dwarfs are preferentially found at

  13. Three New Eclipsing White-dwarf-M-dwarf Binaries Discovered in a Search for Transiting Planets around M-dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Law, Nicholas M.; Kraus, Adam L.; Street, Rachel; Fulton, Benjamin J.; Hillenbrand, Lynne A.; Shporer, Avi; Lister, Tim; Baranec, Christoph; Bloom, Joshua S.; Bui, Khanh; Burse, Mahesh P.; Cenko, S. Bradley; Das, H. K.; Davis, Jack. T. C.; Dekany, Richard G.; Filippenko, Alexei V.; Kasliwal, Mansi M.; Kulkarni, S. R.; Nugent, Peter; Ofek, Eran O.; Poznanski, Dovi; Quimby, Robert M.; Ramaprakash, A. N.; Riddle, Reed; Silverman, Jeffrey M.; Sivanandam, Suresh; Tendulkar, Shriharsh P.

    2012-10-01

    We present three new eclipsing white-dwarf/M-dwarf binary systems discovered during a search for transiting planets around M-dwarfs. Unlike most known eclipsing systems of this type, the optical and infrared emission is dominated by the M-dwarf components, and the systems have optical colors and discovery light curves consistent with being Jupiter-radius transiting planets around early M-dwarfs. We detail the PTF/M-dwarf transiting planet survey, part of the Palomar Transient Factory (PTF). We present a graphics processing unit (GPU)-based box-least-squares search for transits that runs approximately 8 × faster than similar algorithms implemented on general purpose systems. For the discovered systems, we decompose low-resolution spectra of the systems into white-dwarf and M-dwarf components, and use radial velocity measurements and cooling models to estimate masses and radii for the white dwarfs. The systems are compact, with periods between 0.35 and 0.45 days and semimajor axes of approximately 2 R ⊙ (0.01 AU). The M-dwarfs have masses of approximately 0.35 M ⊙, and the white dwarfs have hydrogen-rich atmospheres with temperatures of around 8000 K and have masses of approximately 0.5 M ⊙. We use the Robo-AO laser guide star adaptive optics system to tentatively identify one of the objects as a triple system. We also use high-cadence photometry to put an upper limit on the white-dwarf radius of 0.025 R ⊙ (95% confidence) in one of the systems. Accounting for our detection efficiency and geometric factors, we estimate that 0.08%^{+0.10%}_{-0.05%} (90% confidence) of M-dwarfs are in these short-period, post-common-envelope white-dwarf/M-dwarf binaries where the optical light is dominated by the M-dwarf. The lack of detections at shorter periods, despite near-100% detection efficiency for such systems, suggests that binaries including these relatively low-temperature white dwarfs are preferentially found at relatively large orbital radii. Similar eclipsing

  14. Effects of harvesting flowers from shrubs on the persistence and abundance of wild shrub populations at multiple spatial extents.

    PubMed

    Cabral, Juliano Sarmento; Bond, William J; Midgley, Guy F; Rebelo, Anthony G; Thuiller, Wilfried; Schurr, Frank M

    2011-02-01

    Wildflower harvesting is an economically important activity of which the ecological effects are poorly understood. We assessed how harvesting of flowers affects shrub persistence and abundance at multiple spatial extents. To this end, we built a process-based model to examine the mean persistence and abundance of wild shrubs whose flowers are subject to harvest (serotinous Proteaceae in the South African Cape Floristic Region). First, we conducted a general sensitivity analysis of how harvesting affects persistence and abundance at nested spatial extents. For most spatial extents and combinations of demographic parameters, persistence and abundance of flowering shrubs decreased abruptly once harvesting rate exceeded a certain threshold. At larger extents, metapopulations supported higher harvesting rates before their persistence and abundance decreased, but persistence and abundance also decreased more abruptly due to harvesting than at smaller extents. This threshold rate of harvest varied with species' dispersal ability, maximum reproductive rate, adult mortality, probability of extirpation or local extinction, strength of Allee effects, and carrying capacity. Moreover, spatial extent interacted with Allee effects and probability of extirpation because both these demographic properties affected the response of local populations to harvesting more strongly than they affected the response of metapopulations. Subsequently, we simulated the effects of harvesting on three Cape Floristic Region Proteaceae species and found that these species reacted differently to harvesting, but their persistence and abundance decreased at low rates of harvest. Our estimates of harvesting rates at maximum sustainable yield differed from those of previous investigations, perhaps because researchers used different estimates of demographic parameters, models of population dynamics, and spatial extent than we did. Good demographic knowledge and careful identification of the spatial extent

  15. Effects of experimental hypogravity on peroxidase and cell wall constituents in the dwarf marigold

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Siegel, S.; Speitel, T.; Shiraki, D.; Fukumoto, J.

    1978-01-01

    Dwarf Marigolds grown from seed under experimental hypogravity are modified in lignin content, hemicellulose composition, and peroxidase activity. The two conditions used, clinostats and flotation, induced changes differing in magnitude but qualitatively similar. Most responses on clinostats required corrections for vertical axis rotational effects, thus limiting the value of these instruments in free-fall simulation. These findings extend earlier observations suggesting that increased peroxidase and decreased lignin are characteristic of growth under experimental hypogravity.

  16. Effects of experimental hypogravity on peroxidase and cell wall constituents in the dwarf marigold

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Siegel, S.; Speitel, T.; Shiraki, D.; Fukumoto, J.

    1977-01-01

    Dwarf marigolds grown from seed under experimental hypogravity are modified in lignin content, hemicellulose composition and peroxidase activity. The two conditions used, clinostats and flotation, induced changes differing in magnitude but qualitatively similar. Most responses on clinostats required correction for vertical axis rotational effects, thus limiting the value of these instruments in free-fall simulation. These findings extend earlier observations suggesting that increased peroxidase and decreased lignin are characteristic of growth under experimental hypogravity.

  17. Dwarf mutations in grass pea (Lathyrus sativus L.): origin, morphology, inheritance and linkage studies.

    PubMed

    Talukdar, Dibyendu

    2009-08-01

    Induction of mutation has been used to create additional genetic variability in grass pea (Lathyrus sativus L.). During the ongoing investigations on different induced-morphological mutants, the author detected three types of dwarf mutants in grass pea. One mutant, designated as dwf1 type was earlier identified in colchicine-induced C2 generation of grass pea variety BioR-231 while the other two, designated as dwf2 and dwf3 were isolated in 250 Gy and 300 Gy gamma ray irradiated M2 progeny of variety 'BioR-231' and 'Hooghly Local', respectively. As compared to their parental varieties (controls), all the three mutants manifested stunted, erect and determinate stem, early maturity and tolerance to pod shattering habit. The mutants differed from each other, as well as with controls, in number of primary branches, nature of stipules and internodes, length of peduncle, leaflet and seed coat colour, seed yield and seed neurotoxin content. The three dwarf mutants were monogenically recessive and bred true in successive generations. F2 segregation pattern obtained from the crosses involving the three mutants indicated that dwarf mutation in grass pea was controlled by two independent non-allelic genes, assigned as df1 (for dwf1 type), df2 (for dwf2 type) and df3 (for dwf3 type), with the df1 locus being multiple allelic. Primary trisomic analyses revealed the presence of df1/df2 locus on the extra chromosome of trisomic type I, whereas df3 was located on the extra chromosome of type III. Linkage studies involving five other phenotypic markers suggested linked association of df1/df2 locus with lfc (leaflet colour) and wgn (winged internode) and df3 locus with cbl (seed coat colour). Both the loci; however, assorted independently with flower colour and stipule character. The dwarf types can be utilized as valuable tools for further cytogenetic research and breeding of grass pea.

  18. Faint dwarfs in nearby groups

    SciTech Connect

    Speller, Ryan; Taylor, James E. E-mail: taylor@uwaterloo.ca

    2014-06-20

    The number and distribution of dwarf satellite galaxies remain a critical test of cold dark matter-dominated structure formation on small scales. Until recently, observational information about galaxy formation on these scales has been limited mainly to the Local Group. We have searched for faint analogues of Local Group dwarfs around nearby bright galaxies, using a spatial clustering analysis of the photometric catalog of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Data Release 8. Several other recent searches of SDSS have detected clustered satellite populations down to Δm{sub r} ≡ (m{sub r,} {sub sat} – m{sub r,} {sub main}) ∼ 6-8, using photometric redshifts to reduce background contamination. SDSS photometric redshifts are relatively imprecise, however, for faint and nearby galaxies. Instead, we use angular size to select potential nearby dwarfs and consider only the nearest isolated bright galaxies as primaries. As a result, we are able to detect an excess clustering signal from companions down to Δm{sub r} = 12, 4 mag fainter than most recent studies. We detect an overdensity of objects at separations <400 kpc, corresponding to about 4.6 ± 0.5 satellites per central galaxy, consistent with the satellite abundance expected from the Local Group, given our selection function. Although the sample of satellites detected is incomplete by construction, since it excludes the least and most compact dwarfs, this detection provides a lower bound on the average satellite luminosity function, down to luminosities corresponding to the faintest ''classical'' dwarfs of the Local Group.

  19. Evidence and Implications of Frequent Fires in Ancient Shrub Tundra

    SciTech Connect

    Higuera, P E; Brubaker, L B; Anderson, P M; Brown, T A; Kennedy, A T; Hu, F S

    2008-03-06

    Understanding feedbacks between terrestrial and atmospheric systems is vital for predicting the consequences of global change, particularly in the rapidly changing Arctic. Fire is a key process in this context, but the consequences of altered fire regimes in tundra ecosystems are rarely considered, largely because tundra fires occur infrequently on the modern landscape. We present paleoecological data that indicate frequent tundra fires in northcentral Alaska between 14,000 and 10,000 years ago. Charcoal and pollen from lake sediments reveal that ancient birchdominated shrub tundra burned as often as modern boreal forests in the region, every 144 years on average (+/- 90 s.d.; n = 44). Although paleoclimate interpretations and data from modern tundra fires suggest that increased burning was aided by low effective moisture, vegetation cover clearly played a critical role in facilitating the paleo-fires by creating an abundance of fine fuels. These records suggest that greater fire activity will likely accompany temperature-related increases in shrub-dominated tundra predicted for the 21st century and beyond. Increased tundra burning will have broad impacts on physical and biological systems as well as land-atmosphere interactions in the Arctic, including the potential to release stored organic carbon to the atmosphere.

  20. Remnant resource islands in a burned shrub-steppe site

    SciTech Connect

    Halvorson, J.J.; Bolton, H. Jr.; Smith, J.L.

    1995-06-01

    Artemisia tridentata is a prominent shrub of cool deserts that affects the soil in which it grows. We sampled adjacent burned and unburned sites to see if resource islands persisted in locations where shrubs had been removed by fire. The concentrations of soil variables near the location of burned Artemisia tridentata were smaller than under live Artemisia tridentata and did not vary as much with distance away from the plant axis. However, the patterns of soil variables in these remnant resource islands were still substantial. Significantly higher concentrations of total N and soil microbial C, and significantly higher electrical conductivity were observed at the location of a burned Artemisia tridentata stem than at distances further away. The differences between burned and unburned soil were greatest in samples collected near the plant. In contrast, samples of burned or unburned soil were not distinguishable from each other at locations greater than about 50 cm away from a live Artemisia tridentata axis or a burned stump indicating that the resource island effect was most affected by removal of the plant and not by the fire.

  1. Desert shrub stemflow and its significance in soil moisture replenishment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, X.-P.; Wang, Z.-N.; Berndtsson, R.; Zhang, Y.-F.; Pan, Y.-X.

    2011-02-01

    Stemflow of xerophytic shrubs represents a significant component of water replenishment to the soil-root system influencing water utilization of plant roots at the stand scale, especially in water scarce desert ecosystems. In this study, stemflow of Caragana korshinskii was quantified by an aluminum foil collar collection method on re-vegetated sand dunes of the Shapotou restored desert ecosystem in northwestern China. Time domain reflectometry probes were inserted horizontally at 20 different soil profile depths under the C. korshinskii shrub to monitor soil moisture variation at hourly intervals. Results indicated that 2.2 mm precipitation was necessary for the generation of stemflow for C. korshinskii. Stemflow averaged 8% of the gross precipitation and the average funnelling ratio was as high as 90. The soil moisture in the uppermost soil profile was strongly correlated with individual rainfall and the stemflow strengthened this relationship. Therefore, it is favourable for the infiltrated water redistribution in the deeper soil profile of the root zone. Consequently, stemflow contributes significantly to a positive soil moisture balance in the root zone and the replenishment of soil moisture at deeper soil layers. This plays an important role in plant survival and the general ecology of arid desert environments.

  2. Long-term effects of seeding after wildfire on vegetation in Great Basin shrubland ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Knutson, Kevin C.; Pyke, David A.; Wirth, Troy A.; Arkle, Robert S.; Pilliod, David S.; Brooks, Matthew L.; Chambers, Jeanne C.; Grace, James B.

    2014-01-01

    1. Invasive annual grasses alter fire regimes in shrubland ecosystems of the western USA, threatening ecosystem function and fragmenting habitats necessary for shrub-obligate species such as greater sage-grouse. Post-fire stabilization and rehabilitation treatments have been administered to stabilize soils, reduce invasive species spread and restore or establish sustainable ecosystems in which native species are well represented. Long-term effectiveness of these treatments has rarely been evaluated. 2. We studied vegetation at 88 sites where aerial or drill seeding was implemented following fires between 1990 and 2003 in Great Basin (USA) shrublands. We examined sites on loamy soils that burned only once since 1970 to eliminate confounding effects of recurrent fire and to assess soils most conducive to establishment of seeded species. We evaluated whether seeding provided greater cover of perennial seeded species than burned–unseeded and unburned–unseeded sites, while also accounting for environmental variation. 3. Post-fire seeding of native perennial grasses generally did not increase cover relative to burned–unseeded areas. Native perennial grass cover did, however, increase after drill seeding when competitive non-natives were not included in mixes. Seeding non-native perennial grasses and the shrub Bassia prostrata resulted in more vegetative cover in aerial and drill seeding, with non-native perennial grass cover increasing with annual precipitation. Seeding native shrubs, particularly Artemisia tridentata, did not increase shrub cover or density in burned areas. Cover of undesirable, non-native annual grasses was lower in drill seeded relative to unseeded areas, but only at higher elevations. 4. Synthesis and applications. Management objectives are more likely to be met in high-elevation or precipitation locations where establishment of perennial grasses occurred. On lower and drier sites, management objectives are unlikely to be met with seeding alone

  3. RESOLVED SPECTROSCOPY OF A BROWN DWARF BINARY AT THE T DWARF/Y DWARF TRANSITION

    SciTech Connect

    Burgasser, Adam J.; Gelino, Christopher R.; Kirkpatrick, J. Davy; Cushing, Michael C.

    2012-01-20

    We report resolved near-infrared imaging and spectroscopic observations of the T8.5 binary WISEP J045853.90+643452.6AB obtained with Keck/NIRC2, Keck/OSIRIS, and the Keck Laser Guide Star Adaptive Optics system. These data confirm common proper and radial motion for the two components, and we see the first indications of orbital motion (mostly radial) for this system. H-band spectroscopy identifies both components as very late type brown dwarfs with strong H{sub 2}O and CH{sub 4} absorption. The spectrum of WISE J0458+6434B also exhibits a compelling signature of NH{sub 3} absorption over 1.52-1.54 {mu}m when compared to the T9 dwarf UGPS J072227.51-054031.2. Comparison to T8-Y0 spectral standards and H-band spectral indices indicate classifications of T8.5 and T9.5 for these two components, approaching the boundary between the T dwarf and Y dwarf spectral classes.

  4. Is the inverse leafing phenology of the dry forest understory shrub Jacquinia nervosa (Theophrastaceae) a strategy to escape herbivory?

    PubMed

    Chaves, Oscar M; Avalos, Gerardo

    2006-09-01

    In the dry forest of Santa Rosa National Park, Costa Rica, the understory shrub Jacquinia nervosa presents an inverse pattern of phenology that concentrates vegetative growth and reproduction during the dry season. In this study, we tested the "escape from herbivory" hypothesis as a potential explanation for the inverse phenological pattern of J. nervosa. We monitored leaf, flower and fruit production in 36 adult plants from October 2000 to August 2001. Leaves of six randomly selected branches per plant were marked and monitored every two weeks to measure the cumulative loss in leaf area. To analyze pre-dispersal seed predation we collected 15 fruits per plant and counted the total number of healthy and damaged seeds, as well as the number and type of seed predators found within the fruits. Leaf, flower, and fruit production occurred during the first part of the dry season (end of November to February). The cumulative herbivory levels were similar to those observed in other tropical dry forest tree species that concentrate leaf production during the wet season, and were concentrated on young leaves, which lost an average of 36.77 % of their area (SD = 34.35 %, N = 195). Chewing beetles of the genus Epicauta (Meloidae) were the most important herbivores. In mature leaves, most of the damage was caused by the beetle Coptocycla rufonotata (Chrysomelidae). Fruits took 4 months to develop during the dry season (January-March 2001) but continue increasing in size well into the first 3 months of the wet season (May-July). Average seed number per ripe fruit was 9 (SD = 5, N = 500). Seed predation in mature fruits was 42 % (SD = 47 %, N = 122). Most seeds were damaged by moth larvae of the family Tortricidae. Only 3 % of the flowers became fruits. This was influenced by the low level of flower synchrony (0.38+/-0.26, N = 36 plants), but neither leaf synchrony (0.88+/-0.06, N = 36 plants) nor plant size influenced fruit numbers. The significant damaged produced by insect

  5. Rodent-Mediated Interactions Among Seed Species of Differing Quality in a Shrubsteppe Ecosystem

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Beard, Karen H.; Faulhaber, Craig A.; Howe, Frank P.; Edwards, Thomas C.

    2013-01-01

    Interactions among seeds, mediated by granivorous rodents, are likely to play a strong role in shrubsteppe ecosystem restoration. Past studies typically consider only pairwise interactions between preferred and less preferred seed species, whereas rangeland seedings are likely to contain more than 2 seed species, potentially leading to complex interactions. We examined how the relative proportion of seeds in a 3-species polyculture changes rodent seed selectivity (i.e., removal) and indirect interactions among seeds. We presented 2 rodent species, Peromyscus maniculatus (deer mice) and Perognathus parvus (pocket mice), in arenas with 3-species seed mixtures that varied in the proportion of a highly preferred, moderately preferred, and least preferred seed species, based on preferences determined in this study. We then conducted a field experiment in a pocket mouse—dominated ecosystem with the same 3-species seed mixtures in both “treated” (reduced shrub and increased forb cover) and “untreated” shrubsteppe. In the arena experiment, we found that rodents removed more of the highly preferred seed when the proportions of all 3 seeds were equal. Moderately preferred seeds experienced increased removal when the least preferred seed was in highest proportion. Removal of the least preferred seed increased when the highly preferred seed was in highest proportion. In the field experiment, results were similar to those from the arena experiment and did not differ between treated and untreated shrubsteppe areas. Though our results suggest that 3-species mixtures induce complex interactions among seeds, managers applying these results to restoration efforts should carefully consider the rodent community present and the potential fate of removed seeds.

  6. RADIAL VELOCITY VARIABILITY OF FIELD BROWN DWARFS

    SciTech Connect

    Prato, L.; Mace, G. N.; Rice, E. L.; McLean, I. S.; Kirkpatrick, J. Davy; Burgasser, A. J.; Kim, Sungsoo S.

    2015-07-20

    We present paper six of the NIRSPEC Brown Dwarf Spectroscopic Survey, an analysis of multi-epoch, high-resolution (R ∼ 20,000) spectra of 25 field dwarf systems (3 late-type M dwarfs, 16 L dwarfs, and 6 T dwarfs) taken with the NIRSPEC infrared spectrograph at the W. M. Keck Observatory. With a radial velocity (RV) precision of ∼2 km s{sup −1}, we are sensitive to brown dwarf companions in orbits with periods of a few years or less given a mass ratio of 0.5 or greater. We do not detect any spectroscopic binary brown dwarfs in the sample. Given our target properties, and the frequency and cadence of observations, we use a Monte Carlo simulation to determine the detection probability of our sample. Even with a null detection result, our 1σ upper limit for very low mass binary frequency is 18%. Our targets included seven known, wide brown dwarf binary systems. No significant RV variability was measured in our multi-epoch observations of these systems, even for those pairs for which our data spanned a significant fraction of the orbital period. Specialized techniques are required to reach the high precisions sensitive to motion in orbits of very low-mass systems. For eight objects, including six T dwarfs, we present the first published high-resolution spectra, many with high signal to noise, that will provide valuable comparison data for models of brown dwarf atmospheres.

  7. Seed predation and fruit damage of Solanum lycocarpum (Solanaceae) by rodents in the cerrado of central Brazil

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Briani and, Denis C., Jr.; Guimarães, Paulo R.

    2007-01-01

    Although neotropical savannas and grasslands, collectively referred to as cerrado, are rich in seed-eating species of rodents, little is known about seed predation and its determinants in this habitat. In this study, we investigated seed predation and damage to fruits of the widespread shrub Solanum lycocarpum. In addition, the influence of two possible determinants (distance from the parental plant and total crop size) on the feeding behaviour of Oryzomys scotti (Rodentia, Sigmodontinae) was also examined. O. scotti were captured more frequently close to the shrubs or on shrub crops, indicating that these rodents were attracted to the shrubs and that seed predation was probably distance-dependent. Moreover, the proportion of damaged fruit on the plant decreased as the total crop size increased; consequently, more productive plants were attacked proportionally less by rodents. This pattern of fruit damage may reflect predator satiation caused by the consumption of a large amount of pulp. Alternatively, secondary metabolites in S. lycocarpum fruits may reduce the pulp consumption per feeding event, thereby limiting the number of fruits damaged.

  8. Analysis of genetic diversity and population structure within Florida coconut (Cocos nucifera L.) germplasm using microsatellite DNA, with special emphasis on the Fiji Dwarf cultivar.

    PubMed

    Meerow, Alan W; Wisser, Randall J; Brown, J Steven; Kuhn, David N; Schnell, Raymond J; Broschat, Timothy K

    2003-02-01

    Using 15 simple sequence repeat (SSR) microsatellite DNA loci, we analyzed genetic variation within Cocos nucifera germplasm collections at two locations in south Florida, representing eight cultivars. The loci were also used in a parentage analysis of progeny of the 'Fiji Dwarf' variety at both locations. A total of 67 alleles were detected, with eight the highest number at any one locus. These loci identified 83 of the 110 individual palms. Gene diversity of the 15 loci ranged from 0.778 to 0.223, with a mean of 0.574. 'Fiji Dwarf', 'Malayan Dwarf', 'Green Niño' and 'Red Spicata' cultivars resolve as distinct clusters in a neighbor joining tree using modified Rogers distance, while the tall varieties form two aggregates. The highest gene diversity was found in the tall cultivars (H = 0.583 cumulatively), and the lowest in the 'Malayan Dwarf' (H = 0.202). After the tall coconuts, the 'Fiji Dwarf' was most genetically diverse (H = 0.436), and had the largest number of unique alleles. Genetic identity is highest among the 'Malayan Dwarf' phenotypes, and between the tall varieties. The 'Red Malayan Dwarf' is genetically distinct from the 'Green' and 'Yellow Malayan Dwarf' phenotypes, which cannot be distinguished with the SSR loci used. Off-type 'Malayan Dwarf' phenotypes (putative hybrids with talls) can be identified genotypically. Parentage analyses of 30 'Fiji Dwarf' progeny propagated from five adults surrounded by other cultivars estimate that only 20% of the progeny were out-crossed to the other varieties, while 40-46% were possible selfs. This suggests that a seed-production orchard of the variety maintained at reasonable distance from other varieties, will likely yield only 'Fiji Dwarf' genotypes. Our data are discussed in the context of hypotheses of coconut dissemination around the world.

  9. Atlas of United States Trees, Volume 2: Alaska Trees and Common Shrubs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Viereck, Leslie A.; Little, Elbert L., Jr.

    This volume is the second in a series of atlases describing the natural distribution or range of native tree species in the United States. The 82 species maps include 32 of trees in Alaska, 6 of shrubs rarely reaching tree size, and 44 more of common shrubs. More than 20 additional maps summarize environmental factors and furnish general…

  10. Numerical modeling evapotranspiration flux components in shrub-encroached grassland in Inner Mongolia, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Pei; Li, Xiao-Yan; Huang, Jie-Yu; Yang, Wen-Xin; Wang, Qi-Dan; Xu, Kun; Zheng, Xiao-Ran

    2016-04-01

    Shrub encroachment into arid grasslands occurs around the world. However, few works on shrub encroachment has been conducted in China. Moreover, its hydrological implications remain poorly investigated in arid and semiarid regions. This study combined a two-source energy balanced model and Newton-Raphson iteration scheme to simulate the evapotranspiration (ET) and their components of shrub-encroached(with 15.4% shrub coverage) grassland in Inner Mongolia. Good agreements of ET flux between modelled and measured by Bowen ratio method with relatively insensitive to uncertainties/errors in the assigned models parameters or in measured input variables for its components illustrated that our model was feasible for simulating evapotranspiration flux components in shrub-encroached grassland. The transpiration fraction(T /ET)account for 58±17%during the growing season. With the designed shrub encroachment extreme scenarios (maximum and minimum coverage),the contribution of shrub to local plant transpiration (Tshrub/T) was 20.06±7%during the growing season. Canopy conductance was the main controlling factor of T /ET. In diurnal scale short wave solar radiation was the direct influential factor while in seasonal scale leaf area index (LAI) and soil water content were the direct influential factors. We find that the seasonal variation of Tshrub/T has a good relationship with ratio of LAIshrub/LAI, and rainfall characteristics widened the difference of contribution of shrub and herbs to ecosystem evapotranspiration.

  11. [Soil properties under shrubs in arid area of oasis-desert transition belt].

    PubMed

    Xu, Wenqiang; Luo, Geping; Chen, Xi

    2006-04-01

    In arid and semi-arid areas with sparse vegetation cover, the spatial pattern of surface soil had a definite effect on soil salinity and nutrient flow, which is of highly importance for understanding the processes of land cover change. In this paper, a total of 3 shrub types and 2 soil sampling depths (0-20 and 20-40 cm) in the arid area of oasis-desert transition belt were selected to assess the spatial heterogeneity of soil resources under shrubs. The results showed that different types of shrub had no significant effect on the particle size distribution of soil which was mainly composed of sand and silt, but significant cluster effect was observed under Tamarix ramosissima + bare land shrub. Soils under shrub canopy had significantly higher contents of organic matter, total N and available K, compared to those in open spaces, and presented obvious "fertile island" phenomenon. Shrub types had significant effects on soil salinity, and different cluster effect existed in soils under different shrubs. The heterogeneity of soil resources resulted from a large number of factors, including climate, soil environment, height and extent of shrub canopy, stemflow, existance of other ground cover plants, and so on, many of which were mutually interactive.

  12. Role of native shrubs of the Sahel in mitigating water and nutrient stresses of agricultural crops

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bayala, R.; Ghezzehei, T. A.; Bogie, N. A.; Diedhiou, I.; Dick, R.

    2015-12-01

    In the semi arid zone of the Sahel native woody shrubs are present in many farmers' fields. The native density of these shrubs is fairly low at around 200 to 300 individuals per hectare. An ongoing study in the Peanut Basin, Senegal has shown a vast improvement in crop yields when annual food crops are planted with the shrub Guiera senegalensis, especially in years of low or irregular precipitation. Shrubs in field plots established in 2003 where a rotation of peanuts and millet are grown are planted at a much higher density of 1500-1830 individuals per hectare. In order to increase the density of shrubs on the landscape, the shrubs must be cultivated. We monitored soil moisture, soil temperature, and growth of recently transplanted individuals at a field station in Thies, Senegal.This study seeks to determine the growth characteristics and water use of young shrubs in order to inform possible future plantations of the shrubs in a more intensely managed agroecosystem. If this technique of intercropping is to be expanded we must not exceed the carrying capacity of the landscape. In vulnerable ecosystems where natural resources are scarce and farming inputs are low, we must work to determine ways of exploiting the adaptation of local agroecosystems to increase the sustainability of agriculture in the region.

  13. HIGH FOLIAR NITROGEN IN DESERT SHRUBS: AN IMPORTANT ECOSYSTEM TRAIT OR DEFECTIVE DESERT DOCTRINE?

    EPA Science Inventory

    Nitrogen concentrations in green and senesced leaves of perennial desert shrubs were compiled from a worldwide literature search to test the validity of the doctrine that desert shrubs produce foliage and leaf litter much richer in nitrogen than that in the foliage of plants from...

  14. Effects of grass and shrub cover on the critical unit stream power in overland flow

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Improved knowledge of the effect of grass and shrub cover in overland flow can provide valuable information for soil and water conservation programs. Laboratory simulated rainfall studies were conducted to determine the effect of grasses and shrubs on runoff and soil loss and to ascertain the relati...

  15. Arctic Shrub Growth Response to Climate Variation and Infrastructure Development on the North Slope of Alaska

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ackerman, D.; Finlay, J. C.; Griffin, D.

    2015-12-01

    Woody shrub growth in the arctic tundra is increasing on a circumpolar scale. Shrub expansion alters land-atmosphere carbon fluxes, nutrient cycling, and habitat structure. Despite these ecosystem effects, the drivers of shrub expansion have not been precisely established at the landscape scale. This project examined two proposed anthropogenic drivers: global climate change and local infrastructure development, a press disturbance that generates high levels of dust deposition. Effects of global change were studied using dendrochronology to establish a relationship between climate and annual growth in Betula and Salix shrubs growing in the Alaskan low Arctic. To understand the spatial heterogeneity of shrub expansion, this analysis was replicated in shrub populations across levels of landscape properties including soil moisture and substrate age. Effects of dust deposition on normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and photosynthetic rate were measured on transects up to 625 meters from the Dalton Highway. Dust deposition rates decreased exponentially with distance from road, matching previous models of road dust deposition. NDVI tracked deposition rates closely, but photosynthetic rates were not strongly affected by deposition. These results suggest that dust deposition may locally bias remote sensing measurements such as NDVI, without altering internal physiological processes such as photosynthesis in arctic shrubs. Distinguishing between the effects of landscape properties, climate, and disturbance will improve our predictions of the biogeochemical feedbacks of arctic shrub expansion, with potential application in climate change modeling.

  16. Errors in LiDAR-derived shrub height and crown area on sloped terrain

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    This study developed and tested four methodologies for determining shrub height measurements with LiDAR data in a semiarid shrub-steppe in southwestern Idaho, USA. Unique to this study was the focus of sagebrush height measurements on sloped terrain. The study also developed one of the first metho...

  17. [Water balance of different density artificial Caragana microphylla shrubs in Horqin sand land].

    PubMed

    Lamusa, A; Longjun, C I; Yang, Xiaohui; Jiang, Deming

    2006-01-01

    Employing water balance equation, this paper estimated the evapotranspiration of different density Caragana microphylla shrubs during their growing season. The results showed that during this season, the soil water content under artificial C. microphylla shrubs decreased with their increasing planting density. The average soil water content of 0.5 m x 1 m and 1 m x 2 m density artificial C. microphylla shrubs was below wilting humidity (1.55%), while that of 2 m x 2 m density and natural shrubs was kept above 1.60% which could meet the demand of shrubs growth. The evapotranspiration increased with increasing planting densities, being the highest (297.81 mm) in 0.5 m x 1 m density artificial C. microphylla shrubs, which accounted for 97.90% of the total rainfall during growing season, and the lowest (279.71 mm) in 2 m x 2 m density shrubs. By the end of growth phase, soil water content had a surplus of 24.49 mm. According to the soil water status and water balance theory, the appropriate planting density of C. microphylla shrubs in Horqin sand land should be 2 m x 2 m.

  18. Short seed longevity, variable germination conditions, and infrequent establishment events provide a narrow window for Yucca brevifolia (Agavaceae) recruitment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bryant, M.; Reynolds, J.; DeFalco, Lesley A.; Esque, Todd C.

    2012-01-01

    PREMISE OF THE STUDY: The future of long-lived stand-forming desert plants such as Yucca brevifolia (Joshua tree) has come into question in light of climate variation and landscape-scale disturbances such as wildfire. Understanding plant establishment dynamics is important for mitigating the impacts of disturbances and promoting revegetation. • METHODS: We placed Y. brevifolia seeds in shallow caches and manipulated granivore access, nurse shrub effects, and the season of cache placement to determine conditions for seed germination and seedling establishment. • KEY RESULTS: Greatest seedling emergence occurred during spring and summer, when increased soil moisture was accompanied by warm soil temperatures. Late winter-spring emergence for cached seeds was enhanced beneath shrub canopies, but seedling survival declined beneath shrubs as temperatures increased in spring. Germinability of seed remaining in the soil was reduced from 50-68% after 12 mo residence time in soil and declined to <3% after 40 mo. Following dispersal from parent plants, seeds are either removed by granivores or lose germinability, imposing substantial losses of potential germinants. • CONCLUSIONS: Specific germination and establishment requirements impose stringent limits on recruitment rates for Y. brevifolia. Coupled with infrequent seed availability, the return rates to prefire densities and demographic structure may require decades to centuries, especially in light of potential changes to regional desert climate in combination with the potential for fire recurrence. Demographic patterns are predicted to vary spatially in response to environmental variability that limits recruitment and may already be apparent among extant populations.

  19. Mass Modelling of dwarf Spheroidal Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klimentowski, Jarosław; Łokas, Ewa L.; Kazantzidis, Stelios; Prada, Francisco; Mayer, Lucio; Mamon, Gary A.

    2008-05-01

    We study the origin and properties of unbound stars in the kinematic samples of dwarf spheroidal galaxies. For this purpose we have run a high resolution N-body simulation of a two-component dwarf galaxy orbiting in a Milky Way potential. We create mock kinematic data sets by observing the dwarf in different directions. When the dwarf is observed along the tidal tails the kinematic samples are strongly contaminated by unbound stars from the tails. However, most of the unbound stars can be removed by the method of interloper rejection proposed by den Hartog & Katgert. We model the velocity dispersion profiles of the cleaned-up kinematic samples using solutions of the Jeans equation. We show that even for such a strongly stripped dwarf the Jeans analysis, when applied to cleaned samples, allows us to reproduce the mass and mass-to-light ratio of the dwarf with accuracy typically better than 25%.

  20. Discovery of an Ultracool White Dwarf Companion

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Farihi, J.

    2004-08-01

    The discovery of a low-luminosity common proper-motion companion to the white dwarf GD 392 at a wide separation of 46" is reported. BVRI photometry suggests a low temperature (Teff~4000 K), while JHK data strongly indicate suppressed flux at all near-infrared wavelengths. Thus, GD 392B is one of the few white dwarfs to show significant collision-induced absorption due to the presence of photospheric H2 and the first ultracool white dwarf detected as a companion to another star. Models fail to explain GD 392B as a normal-mass white dwarf. If correct, the cool companion may be explained as a low-mass white dwarf or unresolved double degenerate. The similarities of GD 392B to known ultracool degenerates are discussed, including some possible implications for the faint end of the white dwarf luminosity function.

  1. The physics of white dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Isern, Jordi; García-Berro, Enrique; Hernanz, Margarida; Mochkovitch, Robert

    1998-12-01

    White dwarfs are the final remnants of low- and intermediate-mass stars. Their evolution is essentially a cooling process that lasts for 0953-8984/10/49/015/img6 and allows one to obtain information about the age of the Galaxy as well as about the past stellar formation rate in the solar neighbourhood. Therefore, it is important to identify all of the relevant sources of energy as well as the mechanisms that control its flow to the space. We show in this paper that the inclusion of a detailed treatment of phase transitions in Coulomb plasmas made up of a mixture of different chemical species is crucial, since their redistribution can keep the white dwarf warm for 0.5 to 9 Ga depending on the chemical composition and physical assumptions adopted.

  2. Assessing the Relationship Between Spectral Vegetation Indices and Shrub Cover in the Jornada Basin, New Mexico

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Duncan, Jeff; Stow, D.; Franklin, J.; Hope, A.

    1993-01-01

    We assessed the statistical relations between Spectral Vegetation Indices (SVI's) derived from SPOT multi-spectral data and semi-arid shrub cover at the Jornada LTER site in New Mexico. Despite a limited range of shrub cover in the sample the analyses resulted in r(sup 2) values as high as 0 central dot 77. Greenness SVI's (e.g., Simple Ratio, NDVI, SAVI, PVI and an orthogonal Greenness index) were shown to be more sensitive to shrub type and phenology than brightness SVis (e.g., green, red and near-infrared reflectances and a Brightness index). The results varied substantially with small-scale changes in plot size (60m by 60m to 100m by 100m) as a consequence of landscape heterogeneity. The results also indicated the potential for the spectral differentiation of shrub types, and shrubs from grass, using multi-temporal, multi-spectral analysis.

  3. Microsatellite primers for the rare shrub Acacia adinophylla (Fabaceae)1

    PubMed Central

    Nevill, Paul G.; Wardell-Johnson, Grant

    2016-01-01

    Premise of the study: Microsatellite primers were developed for the rare shrub Acacia adinophylla (Fabaceae) to assess genetic diversity and its spatial structuring. Methods and Results: Shotgun sequencing on an Illumina MiSeq produced 6,372,575 reads. Using the QDD pipeline, we designed 60 primer pairs, which were screened using PCR. Seventeen loci were developed, of which 12 loci were identified that were polymorphic, amplified reliably, and could be consistently scored. These loci were then screened for variation in individuals from three populations. The number of alleles observed for these 12 loci ranged from three to 18 and expected heterozygosity ranged from 0.13 to 0.85. Conclusions: These markers will enable the quantification of genetic impact of proposed mining activities on the short-range endemic Acacia adinophylla. PMID:27843728

  4. Dwarf spheroidal galaxies and resonant orbital coupling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kuhn, J. R.; Miller, R. H.

    1989-01-01

    The structural properties of the dwarf spheroidal satellite galaxies of the Milky Way may be strongly affected by their time-dependent interactions with the 'tidal' field of the Milky Way. A low Q resonance of the tidal driving force with collective oscillation modes of the dwarf system can produce many of the observed properties of the Local Group dwarf spheroidal galaxies, including large velocity dispersions that would normally be interpreted as indicating large dynamical masses.

  5. Are All Magnetic White Dwarf Stars Massive?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nitta, A.; Kepler, S. O.; Kulebi, B.; Koester, D.; Kleinman, S. J.; Winget, D. E.; Castanheira, B. G.; Corsico, A. H.

    2017-03-01

    We obtained follow-up spectra on 25 white dwarf stars identified in our white dwarf catalog of Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) as massive or magnetic. We identified over 300 magnetic white dwarf stars from SDSS with some uncertainties due to the low S/N of the spectra. With much higher S/N Gemini data, our sample should be able to help us confirm accuracy of our determinations. We present here our results so far from the follow up observations.

  6. Differences in hoarding behaviors among six sympatric rodent species on seeds of oil tea ( Camellia oleifera) in Southwest China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chang, Gang; Zhang, Zhibin

    2011-05-01

    Seed hoarding is an important behavioral adaptation to food shortages for many rodent species. Sympatric rodents may affect the natural regeneration of large-seeded trees differently as seed dispersers or seed predators. Using seeds of oil tea ( Camellia oleifera), we investigated differences in hoarding behaviors among six sympatric rodent species in semi-natural enclosures in a subtropical forest in southwest of China. We found that all these six species ate seeds of C. oleifera, but only Edward's long-tailed rats ( Leopoldamys edwardsi) were predominantly scatter hoarders; chestnut rats ( Niviventer fulvescens) and white-bellied rats ( Niviventer confucianus) scatter hoarded and larder hoarded few seeds, but were seed predators; South China field mice ( Apodemus draco) exhibited little larder-hoarding behavior; and Chevrier's field mice ( A. chevrieri) as well as Himalayan rats ( Rattus nitidusa) did not hoard seeds at all. The rodents that engaged in scatter hoarding often formed single-seed caches and tended to cache seeds under grass or shrubs. Our findings indicate that sympatric rodents consuming seeds of the same species of plant can have different hoarding strategies, affecting seed dispersal and plant regeneration differently. We conclude by discussing the role of these species in hoarding seeds of C. oleifera and highlight the essential role of Edward's long-tailed rats as predominantly potential dispersers of this plant species.

  7. Ingestion and dispersal: direct and indirect effects of frugivores on seed viability and germination of Corema album (Empetraceae)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Calviño-Cancela, María

    2004-07-01

    The effect of gulls, blackbirds and rabbits on the viability and germination of Corema album seeds are compared. Frugivores can affect seed viability and germination (1) directly, through the effect of ingestion and (2) indirectly, dispersing seeds to different sites with different conditions. These two major factors in the quality of a seed disperser are not necessarily concordant in direction and magnitude. Gulls and blackbirds have similar direct effects, being much better than those of rabbits, due to the low probability of germination of seeds within rabbit pellets. Seed germination occurs mainly in the open ground, particularly in the sparse scrub, and is very low under vegetation cover. This pattern becomes crucial determining the indirect effects of seed dispersers that will depend on their capacity to carry seeds to the most suitable sites for germination. Gulls and rabbits disperse most of seeds to open ground, exerting a positive indirect effect on germination, whereas blackbirds disperse seeds mainly under shrubs, thus exerting a negative indirect effect. Direct and indirect effects on seed germination are concordant for gulls but discordant for blackbirds and rabbits. Gulls were the best dispersers; the overall probability of germination for a seed dispersed by gulls was 17.59%. The quality of blackbirds and rabbits was relatively low (3.49% and 1.17%, respectively). Frugivores seem to be essential for germination of C. album seeds, not as much for their direct effects but for their ability to carry seeds to suitable sites.

  8. Characterizing Accreting White Dwarf Pulsators

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Szkody, Paula; Mukadam, Anjum

    2014-02-01

    Understanding the population, mass distribution, and evolution of accreting white dwarfs impacts the entire realm of binary interaction, including the creation of Type Ia supernovae. We are concentrating on accreting white dwarf pulsators, as the pulsation properties allow us a view of how the accretion affects the interior of the star. Our ground- based photometry on 11 accreting pulsators with corresponding temperatures from HST UV spectra suggest a broad instability strip in the range of 10500 to 16000K. Additionally, tracking a post-outburst heated white dwarf as it cools and crosses the blue edge and resumes pulsation provides an independent method to locate the empirical instability strip. Determining a post-outburst cooling curve yields an estimate of the amount of heating and the accreted mass during the outburst. We request additional photometry of 2 objects that present unique properties: GW Lib which has not yet returned to its pre-outburst pulsation spectrum after 6 yrs, and EQ Lyn which returned to its pre- outburst pulsation after 3 yrs but is now turning on and off without ongoing outbursts. Following the pulsation spectrum changes over stretches of several nights in a row will provide specific knowledge of the stability of the observed modes.

  9. Local biotic adaptation of trees and shrubs to plant neighbors

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Grady, Kevin C.; Wood, Troy E.; Kolb, Thomas E.; Hersch-Green, Erika; Shuster, Stephen M.; Gehring, Catherine A.; Hart, Stephen C.; Allan, Gerard J.; Whitham, Thomas G.

    2017-01-01

    Natural selection as a result of plant–plant interactions can lead to local biotic adaptation. This may occur where species frequently interact and compete intensely for resources limiting growth, survival, and reproduction. Selection is demonstrated by comparing a genotype interacting with con- or hetero-specific sympatric neighbor genotypes with a shared site-level history (derived from the same source location), to the same genotype interacting with foreign neighbor genotypes (from different sources). Better genotype performance in sympatric than allopatric neighborhoods provides evidence of local biotic adaptation. This pattern might be explained by selection to avoid competition by shifting resource niches (differentiation) or by interactions benefitting one or more members (facilitation). We tested for local biotic adaptation among two riparian trees, Populus fremontii and Salix gooddingii, and the shrub Salix exigua by transplanting replicated genotypes from multiple source locations to a 17 000 tree common garden with sympatric and allopatric treatments along the Colorado River in California. Three major patterns were observed: 1) across species, 62 of 88 genotypes grew faster with sympatric neighbors than allopatric neighbors; 2) these growth rates, on an individual tree basis, were 44, 15 and 33% higher in sympatric than allopatric treatments for P. fremontii, S. exigua and S. gooddingii, respectively, and; 3) survivorship was higher in sympatric treatments for P. fremontiiand S. exigua. These results support the view that fitness of foundation species supporting diverse communities and dominating ecosystem processes is determined by adaptive interactions among multiple plant species with the outcome that performance depends on the genetic identity of plant neighbors. The occurrence of evolution in a plant-community context for trees and shrubs builds on ecological evolutionary research that has demonstrated co-evolution among herbaceous taxa, and

  10. Throughfall and its spatial variability beneath xerophytic shrub canopies within water-limited arid desert ecosystems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Ya-feng; Wang, Xin-ping; Hu, Rui; Pan, Yan-xia

    2016-08-01

    Throughfall is known to be a critical component of the hydrological and biogeochemical cycles of forested ecosystems with inherently temporal and spatial variability. Yet little is understood concerning the throughfall variability of shrubs and the associated controlling factors in arid desert ecosystems. Here we systematically investigated the variability of throughfall of two morphological distinct xerophytic shrubs (Caragana korshinskii and Artemisia ordosica) within a re-vegetated arid desert ecosystem, and evaluated the effects of shrub structure and rainfall characteristics on throughfall based on heavily gauged throughfall measurements at the event scale. We found that morphological differences were not sufficient to generate significant difference (P < 0.05) in throughfall between two studied shrub species under the same rainfall and meteorological conditions in our study area, with a throughfall percentage of 69.7% for C. korshinskii and 64.3% for A. ordosica. We also observed a highly variable patchy pattern of throughfall beneath individual shrub canopies, but the spatial patterns appeared to be stable among rainfall events based on time stability analysis. Throughfall linearly increased with the increasing distance from the shrub base for both shrubs, and radial direction beneath shrub canopies had a pronounced impact on throughfall. Throughfall variability, expressed as the coefficient of variation (CV) of throughfall, tended to decline with the increase in rainfall amount, intensity and duration, and stabilized passing a certain threshold. Our findings highlight the great variability of throughfall beneath the canopies of xerophytic shrubs and the time stability of throughfall pattern among rainfall events. The spatially heterogeneous and temporally stable throughfall is expected to generate a dynamic patchy distribution of soil moisture beneath shrub canopies within arid desert ecosystems.

  11. Effects of arctic shrub expansion on biophysical vs. biogeochemical drivers of litter decomposition.

    PubMed

    DeMarco, Jennie; Mack, Michelle C; Bret-Harte, M Syndonia

    2014-07-01

    Climate warming in arctic tundra may shift dominant vegetation from graminoids to deciduous shrubs, whose functional traits could, in turn, alter biotic and abiotic controls over biogeochemical cycling of carbon (C) and nitrogen (N). We investigated whether shrub-induced changes in microclimate have stronger effects on litter decomposition and nutrient release than changes in litter quality and quantity. In arctic tundra near Toolik Lake, Alaska, USA, we incubated a common substrate in a snow-addition experiment to test whether snow accumulation around arctic deciduous shrubs altered the environment enough to increase litter decomposition rates. We compared the influence of litter quality on the rate of litter and N loss by decomposing litter from four different plant functional types in a common site. We used aboveground net primary production values and estimated decay constant (k) values from our decomposition experiments to calculate community-weighted mass loss for each site. Snow addition had no effect on decomposition of the common substrate, and the site with the highest abundance of shrubs had the lowest decomposition rates. Species varied in their decomposition rates, with species from the same functional type not always following similar patterns. Community-weighted mass loss was 1.5 times greater in the high shrub site, and only slightly decreased when adjusted for soil environment, suggesting that litter quality and quantity are the primary drivers of community decomposition. Our findings suggest that on a short time scale, the changes in soil environment associated with snow trapping by shrubs are unlikely to influence litter nutrient turnover enough to drive positive snow-shrub feedbacks. The mechanisms driving shrub expansion are more likely to do with shrub-litter feedbacks, where the higher growth rates and N uptake by shrubs allows them to produce more leaves, resulting in a larger litter N pool and faster internal cycling of nutrients.

  12. White Dwarf Critical Tests for Modified Gravity.

    PubMed

    Jain, Rajeev Kumar; Kouvaris, Chris; Nielsen, Niklas Grønlund

    2016-04-15

    Scalar-tensor theories of gravity can lead to modifications of the gravitational force inside astrophysical objects. We exhibit that compact stars such as white dwarfs provide a unique setup to test beyond Horndeski theories of G^{3} type. We obtain stringent and independent constraints on the parameter ϒ characterizing the deviations from Newtonian gravity using the mass-radius relation, the Chandrasekhar mass limit, and the maximal rotational frequency of white dwarfs. We find that white dwarfs impose stronger constraints on ϒ than red and brown dwarfs.

  13. Brown dwarfs in young stellar clusters

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stringfellow, Guy S.

    1991-01-01

    The present calculations of the early evolution of brown dwarfs and very low mass stars (LMSs) yield isochrones spanning 0.01-0.2 solar masses for ages in the 1 to 300 million year range. Since the brown dwarfs remain sharply segregated in T(eff) from LMSs for ages of less than 100 million years, it follows that for coeval populations of known age, a domain exists in the H-R diagram in which only brown dwarfs exist. These theoretical results are compared with recent observations of the Pleiades brown dwarf candidates, using two new sets of color-T(eff) transformations. Both sets yield consistent interpretations.

  14. Dynamical Masses of Accreting White Dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pala, A. F.; Gänsckie, B. T.

    2017-03-01

    The mass retention efficiency is a key question in both the theoretical and observational study of accreting white dwarfs in interacting binaries, with important implications for their potential as progenitors for type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia). Canonical wisdom is that classical nova eruptions erode the white dwarf mass, and consequently, cataclysmic variables (CVs) have been excluded from the SN Ia progenitor discussion. However the average mass of white dwarfs in CVs is substantially higher (≃ 0.83 M⊙) than that of single white dwarfs (≃ 0.64 M ⊙), in stark contrast to expectations based on current classical nova models. This finding is based on a sample of ≃ 30 CV white dwarfs with accurate mass measurements, most of them in eclipsing systems. Given the fundamental importance of the mass evolution of accreting white dwarfs, it is necessary to enlarge this sample and to diversify the methods used for measuring masses. We have begun a systematic study of 27 CVs to almost double the number of CV white dwarfs with an accurate mass measurement. Using VLT/X-shooter phase-resolved observations, we can measure the white dwarf masses to a few percent, and will be able to answer the question whether accreting CV white dwarfs grow in mass.

  15. Seed Treatment. Bulletin 760.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lowery, Harvey C.

    This manual gives a definition of seed treatment, the types of seeds normally treated, diseases and insects commonly associated with seeds, fungicides and insecticides used, types of equipment used for seed treatment, and information on labeling and coloring of treated seed, pesticide carriers, binders, stickers, and safety precautions. (BB)

  16. Seed Treatment. Manual 92.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Missouri Univ., Columbia. Agricultural Experiment Station.

    This training manual provides information needed to meet minimum EPA standards for certification as a commercial applicator of pesticides in the seed treatment category. The text discusses pests commonly associated with seeds; seed treatment pesticides; labels; chemicals and seed treatment equipment; requirements of federal and state seed laws;…

  17. Suppression of Specific Apple Root Pathogens by Brassica napus Seed Meal Amendment Regardless of Glucosinolate Content.

    PubMed

    Mazzola, M; Granatstein, D M; Elfving, D C; Mullinix, K

    2001-07-01

    ABSTRACT The impact of Brassica napus seed meal on the microbial complex that incites apple replant disease was evaluated in greenhouse trials. Regardless of glucosinolate content, seed meal amendment at a rate of 0.1% (vol/vol) significantly enhanced growth of apple and suppressed apple root infection by Rhizoctonia spp. and Pratylenchus penetrans. High glucosinolate B. napus cv. Dwarf Essex seed meal amendments did not consistently suppress soil populations of Pythium spp. or apple root infection by this pathogen. Application of a low glucosinolate containing B. napus seed meal at a rate of 1.0% (vol/vol) resulted in a significant increase in recovery of Pythium spp. from apple roots, and a corresponding reduction in apple seedling root biomass. When applied at lower rates, B. napus seed meal amendments enhanced populations of fluorescent Pseudomonas spp., but these bacteria were not recovered from soils amended with seed meal at a rate of 2% (vol/vol). Seed meal amendments resulted in increased soil populations of total bacteria and actinomycetes. B. napus cv. Dwarf Essex seed meal amendments were phytotoxic to apple when applied at a rate of 2% (vol/vol), and phytotoxicity was not diminished when planting was delayed for as long as 12 weeks after application. These findings suggest that B. napus seed meal amendments can be a useful tool in the management of apple replant disease and, in the case of Rhizoctonia spp., that disease control operates through mechanisms other than production of glucosinolate hydrolysis products.

  18. Seed Size, Fecundity and Postfire Regeneration Strategy Are Interdependent in Hakea

    PubMed Central

    El-ahmir, Sh-hoob Mohamed; Lim, Sim Lin; Lamont, Byron B.; He, Tianhua

    2015-01-01

    Seed size is a key functional trait that affects plant fitness at the seedling stage and may vary greatly with species fruit size, growth form and fecundity. Using structural equation modelling (SEM) and correlated trait evolution analysis, we investigated the interaction network between seed size and fecundity, postfire regeneration strategy, fruit size, plant height and serotiny (on-plant seed storage) among 82 species of the woody shrub genus, Hakea, with a wide spectrum of seed sizes (2–500 mg). Seed size is negatively correlated with fecundity, while fire-killed species (nonsprouters) produce more seeds than resprouters though they are of similar size. Seed size is unrelated to plant height and level of serotiny while it scales allometrically with fruit size. A strong phylogenetic signal in seed size revealed phylogenetic constraints on seed size variation in Hakea. Our analyses suggest a causal relationship between seed size, fecundity and postfire regeneration strategy in Hakea. These results demonstrate that fruit size, fecundity and evolutionary history have had most control over seed size variation among Hakea species. PMID:26035821

  19. Changes in epiphyte communities as the shrub, Acer circinatum, develops and ages

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ruchty, A.M.; Rosso, A.L.

    2001-01-01

    The Pacific Northwest tall shrub Acer circinatum (vine maple) can host diverse and abundant epiphyte communities. A chronosequence approach revealed that these communities gradually shift in composition as the shrub progresses through its life cycle. Different epiphytic life forms occupy different spatial and temporal niches on shrub stems. These life forms generally shift upwards along the shrub stem as the stem ages and develops, in accordance with the similar gradient hypothesis. We postulate the following sequence of events. An initial wave of colonization occurs as new substrate is laid down. Over time, superior competitors gradually engulf and overgrow competitively inferior primary colonizers. Concurrently, shrub stem microclimate changes as shrub stems grow, age, and layer, causing the processes of competition and colonization to shift in favor of different epiphytic life forms during different life stages of the shrub stem. We define four separate shrub stem life stages: life classes 1a??4 describe, respectively, young upright a??whipsa??; vigorous, upright, mature stems; declining stems beginning to bend towards the forest floor; and horizontal, decadent stems. As space on the shrub stem is filled through growth and colonization, interspecific competition intensifies. Successful competitors persist and spread, while poor competitors are increasingly restricted to the stem tips, where interspecific competition is less intense. In these forests, Usnea, green-algal foliose lichens, and moss tufts excel as the primary colonizers and become common on the outer portions of shrub stems over time, as long as the overstory is not too dense. Moss mats are also good primary colonizers, but excel as secondary colonizers, often coming to dominate decadent shrub stems. Although all life forms can be primary colonizers, the remaining forms (cyanolichens, liverworts, and Antitrichia curtipendula) are effective secondary colonizers. Liverworts are also effective

  20. Quantitative Parameters and Ecological Implications of a Specialized Tritrophic Interaction Involving a Seed-Feeding Tortricid, Pseudargyrotoza conwagana, a Braconid Parasitoid, Bracon otiosus, and the Wild Privet, Ligustrum vulgare

    PubMed Central

    Hernández, Ángel; Falcó, José Vicente

    2014-01-01

    Little is known about tritrophic interactions involving seed-feeding insects, parasitoid wasps, and wild fleshy fruits. Here, we examine relationships between Pseudargyrotoza conwagana (F.) (Lepidoptera: Tortricidae), Bracon otiosus Marshall (Hymenoptera: Braconidae), and the wild privet, Ligustrum vulgare L. (Lamiales: Oleaceae), after collecting fruits in a hedgerow habitat in northwest Spain and rearing insects indoors. No other insect species was detected in this trophic system. Each fruit contained one to four seeds, each infested fruit contained only one seedfeeding tortricid caterpillar, and each parasitized caterpillar was affected by a single braconid individual, i.e., B. otiosus was a solitary parasitoid. Almost half of the wild privet shrubs were infested by P. conwagana, and infestation ranged from 2 to 32% of fruits per infested shrub. The general effect of P.conwagana on wild privet dispersal can be considered low, as the overall rate of seed infestation was low (6% of seeds). The infestation rate was higher in wild privet shrubs with a larger number of seeds per fruit, and tortricid caterpillars that left the fruits successfully ate >80% of seeds. In total, the parasitism rate was moderate (25% of caterpillars), but varied considerably (0–75%) among shrubs where P. conwagana infestation was detected. Parasitism only occurred in shrubs showing high infestation rates (19–32% infested fruits), i.e., with high host densities; however, the parasitism rate was densityindependent in these shrubs. The wild privets benefited from the action of B. otiosus in two ways: the tortricid caterpillar population was partly eliminated, and the caterpillars were prevented from eating more than one seed per fruit. The B. otiosus sex ratio was very balanced (1 male to 1.18 females). Winter diapause and protandry were prevalent in B. otiosus. PMID:25368072

  1. Protection from livestock fails to deter shrub proliferation in a desert landscape with a history of heavy grazing

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Desertification is often characterized by the replacement of mesophytic grasses with xerophytic shrubs. Livestock grazing is considered a key driver of shrub encroachment, although most evidence is anecdotal or confounded by other factors. Mapping of velvet mesquite (Prosopis velutina) shrubs in and...

  2. Arid oil-field restoration: native perennial grasses suppress weeds and erosion, but also suppress native shrubs

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    1. Long-lived, drought-tolerant shrubs are dominant components of many arid ecosystems, and shrubs provide multiple ecosystem services (e.g., soil stabilization, herbaceous plant facilitation, carbon storage and wildlife habitat). On denuded sites, shrub restoration is hindered by abiotic (erosion ...

  3. Mediterranean shrub vegetation: soil protection vs. water availability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    García Estringana, Pablo; Nieves Alonso-Blázquez, M.; Alegre, Alegre; Cerdà, Artemi

    2014-05-01

    Soil Erosion and Land Degradation are closely related to the changes in the vegetation cover (Zhao et al., 2013). Although other factors such as rainfall intensiy or slope (Ziadat and Taimeh, 2013) the plant covers is the main factor that controls the soil erosion (Haregeweyn, 2013). Plant cover is the main factor of soil erosion processes as the vegetation control the infiltration and runoff generation (Cerdà, 1998a; Kargar Chigani et al., 2012). Vegetation cover acts in a complex way in influencing on the one hand on runoff and soil loss and on the other hand on the amount and the way that rainfall reaches the soil surface. In arid and semiarid regions, where erosion is one of the main degradation processes and water is a scant resource, a minimum percentage of vegetation coverage is necessary to protect the soil from erosion, but without compromising the availability of water (Belmonte Serrato and Romero Diaz, 1998). This is mainly controlled by the vegetation distribution (Cerdà, 1997a; Cammeraat et al., 2010; Kakembo et al., 2012). Land abandonment is common in Mediterranean region under extensive land use (Cerdà, 1997b; García-Ruiz, 2010). Abandoned lands typically have a rolling landscape with steep slopes, and are dominated by herbaceous communities that grow on pasture land interspersed by shrubs. Land abandonment use to trigger an increase in soil erosion, but the vegetation recovery reduces the impact of the vegetation. The goal of this work is to assess the effects of different Mediterranean shrub species (Dorycnium pentaphyllum Scop., Medicago strasseri, Colutea arborescens L., Retama sphaerocarpa, L., Pistacia Lentiscus L. and Quercus coccifera L.) on soil protection (runoff and soil losses) and on rainfall reaching soil surface (rainfall partitioning fluxes). To characterize the effects of shrub vegetation and to evaluate their effects on soil protection, two field experiments were carried out. The presence of shrub vegetation reduced runoff by

  4. An unsuccessful search for brown dwarf companions to white dwarf stars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Shipman, Harry L.

    1986-01-01

    The results of a survey to detect excess infrared emission from white dwarf stars which would be attributable to a low mass companion are reviewed. Neither a simple comparison of spectroscopically identified white dwarf stars with the IRAS Point Source Catalog nor the coadding of IRAS survey data resulted in a detection of a brown dwarf. The seven nearest stars where the most stringent limits to the presence of a brown dwarf were obtained are listed, and an effort to detect brown dwarfs in the solar neighborhood is discussed.

  5. [Growth of wheat from seed-to-seed in space flight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Levinskikh, M. A.; Sychev, V. N.; Derendiaeva, T. A.; Signalova, O. B.; Podol'skii, I. G.; Padalka, G. I.; Avdeev, S. V.; Bingham, G. E.; Campbell, W. F. (Principal Investigator)

    2000-01-01

    In our earlier space experiment with super dwarf wheat we found the spikes developed in space to be barren. The cause of the full crop sterility was sensitivity of this wheat species to the ethylene concentration of 0.3-0.8 mg/m3 during the experiment. The follow-up ground experiments were made to identify species of dwarf wheat that could be raised in space greenhouse Svet and are distinguished by partial tolerance of their reproductive organs to elevated ethylene in air. The choice fell on the USU-Apogee cultivar specially developed for planting in growth chambers as an integral part of various bioregenerative life support systems, including the space ones. An experiment with wheat Apogee was performed in greenhouse Svet on board MIR. The period of the full crop vegetation cycle was not significantly altered under the spaceflight conditions. The experiment yielded 508 seeds from 12 plants, i.e. by 38% less than in laboratory experiments and by 69% more as compared with results of growing crops in ethylene-contaminated atmosphere (1 mg/m3). Mass of the space seeds was low if compared with the laboratory crops. This was the first time when the feasibility of gathering seeds from wheat that had passed the whole vegetation cycle in space flight was demonstrated. The experiment will give mightly impetus to the advancement of research on space biological LSS and gravitational biology.

  6. AIRSAR studies of woody shrub density in semiarid rangeland: Jornada del Muerto, New Mexico

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Musick, H.B.; Schaber, G.S.; Breed, C.S.

    1998-01-01

    This study evaluates the use of polarimetric Airborne Synthetic Aperture Radar (AIRSAR) data to assess woody shrub density in a semiarid site where the vegetation consists primarily of varied mixtures of herbaceous vegetation and shrubs. AIRSAR data and field observations of vegetation cover and growth form-composition were obtained for 59 sites in the Jornada del Muerto plain in southern New Mexico. Radar signature measures examined were C-, L- and P-band backscattering coefficients (??0) for HH, HV and W polarizations, ratios of ??0HH and ??0HV to ??0VV, and the HH-VV polarization phase difference and correlation coefficient. The most effective measure for estimation of shrub density was L-band ??0HV, which distinguished among shrub density classes with no misclassification. Sensitivity of this measure to small amounts of shrub cover was indicated by successful separation of sites with <1% shrub cover from sites with 1-5% cover. Separability of shrub density classes was generally least for C-band signature measures. A distinctive radar signature was exhibited by dense stands of Yucca elata, a semitreelike plant with uniformly thick ???10 cm diameter) fibrous stems. Yucca sites were distinguished from others by their high P-band ??0HV relative to L-band ??0HV. The results are largely explained by the greater sensitivity of lounger wavelengths to larger canopy structural elements. L-band ??0HV and other measures responsive to canopy volume scattering were more strongly related to shrub than to herbaceous plant cover because woody shrub canopies have numerous stems of the intermediate size to which L-band is most sensitive, whereas stems of this size are mostly lacking in herbaceous canopies. The uniform-diameter stems of yucca have larger dimensions to which P-band is more sensitive than L-band.This study evaluates the use of polarimetric Airborne Synthetic Aperture Radar (AIRSAR) data to assess woody shrub density in a semiarid site where the vegetation consists

  7. Seed bank survival of an invasive species, but not of two native species, declines with invasion.

    PubMed

    Orrock, John L; Christopher, Cory C; Dutra, Humberto P

    2012-04-01

    Soil-borne seed pathogens may play an important role in either hindering or facilitating the spread of invasive exotic plants. We examined whether the invasive shrub Lonicera maackii (Caprifoliaceae) affected fungi-mediated mortality of conspecific and native shrub seeds in a deciduous forest in eastern Missouri. Using a combination of L. maackii removal and fungicide treatments, we found no effect of L. maackii invasion on seed viability of the native Symphoricarpos orbiculatus (Caprifoliaceae) or Cornus drummondii (Cornaceae). In contrast, fungi were significant agents of L. maackii seed mortality in invaded habitats. Losses of L. maackii to soil fungi were also significant in invaded habitats where L. maackii had been removed, although the magnitude of the effect of fungi was lower, suggesting that changes in soil chemistry or microhabitat caused by L. maackii were responsible for affecting fungal seed pathogens. Our work suggests that apparent competition via soil pathogens is not an important factor contributing to impacts of L. maackii on native shrubs. Rather, we found that fungal seed pathogens have density-dependent effects on L. maackii seed survival. Therefore, while fungal pathogens may provide little biotic resistance to early invasion by L. maackii, our study illustrates that more work is needed to understand how changes in fungal pathogens during the course of an invasion contribute to the potential for restoration of invaded systems. More generally, our study suggests that increased rates of fungal pathogen attack may be realized by invasive plants, such as L. maackii, that change the chemical or physical environment of the habitats they invade.

  8. Trends in soil erosion and woody shrub encroachment in Ngqushwa district, Eastern Cape Province, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Manjoro, Munyaradzi; Kakembo, Vincent; Rowntree, Kate M

    2012-03-01

    Woody shrub encroachment severely impacts on the hydrological and erosion response of rangelands and abandoned cultivated lands. These processes have been widely investigated at various spatial scales, using mostly field experimentation. The present study used remote sensing to investigate spatial and temporal patterns of soil erosion and encroachment by a woody shrub species, Pteronia incana, in a catchment in Ngqushwa district, Eastern Cape Province, South Africa between 1998 and 2008. The extreme categories of soil erosion and shrub encroachment were mapped with higher accuracy than the intermediate ones, particularly where lower spatial resolution data were used. The results showed that soil erosion in the worst category increased simultaneously with dense woody shrub encroachment on the hill slopes. This trend is related to the spatial patterning of woody shrub vegetation that increases bare soil patches--leading to runoff connectivity and concentration of overland flow. The major changes in soil erosion and shrub encroachment analysed during the 10-year period took place in the 5-9° slope category and on the concave slope form. Multi-temporal analyses, based on remote sensing, can extend our understanding of the dynamics of soil erosion and woody shrub encroachment. They may help benchmark the processes and assist in upscaling field studies.

  9. Season and light affect constitutive defenses of understory shrub species against folivorous insects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karolewski, Piotr; Giertych, Marian J.; Żmuda, Michał; Jagodziński, Andrzej M.; Oleksyn, Jacek

    2013-11-01

    Understory shrubs contribute to overall species diversity, providing habitat and forage for animals, influence soil chemistry and forest microclimate. However, very little is known about the chemical defense of various shrub species against folivorous insects. Using six shrub species, we tested how seasonal changes and light conditions affect their constitutive defense to insect damage. We monitored leaf perforation, concentrations of total phenols, condensed tannins, nitrogen (N), and total nonstructural carbohydrates (TNC). Leaf damage caused by insects was low in Sambucus nigra, Cornus sanguinea, and Frangula alnus, intermediate in Corylus avellana and Prunus serotina, and high in Prunus padus. Leaves of all the species, when growing in high light conditions, had high concentrations of defense metabolites. Except for C. avellana, leaves of the other shrub species growing in full sun were less injured than those in shade. This may be due to higher concentrations of defense metabolites and lower concentrations of nitrogen. Similar patterns of the effects of light on metabolites studied and N were observed for leaves with varying location within the crown of individual shrubs (from the top of the south direction to the bottom of the north), as for leaves from shrubs growing in full sun and shrubs in the shade of canopy trees. A probable cause of the greater damage of more sunlit leaves of C. avellana was the fact that they were herbivorized mostly by Altica brevicollis, a specialist insect that prefers plant tissues with a high TNC level and is not very sensitive to a high level of phenolic compounds.

  10. Moss Mediates the Influence of Shrub Species on Soil Properties and Processes in Alpine Tundra

    PubMed Central

    Williamson, Scott N.; Barrio, Isabel C.; Helgadóttir, Ágústa; HiK, David S.

    2016-01-01

    In tundra ecosystems, bryophytes influence soil processes directly and indirectly through interactions with overstory shrub species. We experimentally manipulated moss cover and measured seasonal soil properties and processes under two species of deciduous shrubs with contrasting canopy structures, Salix planifolia pulchra and Betula glandulosa-nana complex. Soil properties (seasonal temperature, moisture and C:N ratios) and processes (seasonal litter decomposition and soil respiration) were measured over twelve months. Shrub species identity had the largest influence on summer soil temperatures and soil respiration rates, which were higher under Salix canopies. Mosses were associated with lower soil moisture irrespective of shrub identity, but modulated the effects of shrubs on winter soil temperatures and soil C:N ratios so that moss cover reduced differences in soil winter temperatures between shrub species and reduced C:N ratios under Betula but not under Salix canopies. Our results suggest a central role of mosses in mediating soil properties and processes, with their influence depending on shrub species identity. Such species-dependent effects need to be accounted for when forecasting vegetation dynamics under ongoing environmental changes. PMID:27760156

  11. [Soil moisture dynamics of artificial Caragana microphylla shrubs at different topographical sites in Horqin sandy land].

    PubMed

    Huang, Gang; Zhao, Xue-yong; Huang, Ying-xin; Su, Yan-gui

    2009-03-01

    Based on the investigation data of vegetation and soil moisture regime of Caragana microphylla shrubs widely distributed in Horqin sandy land, the spatiotemporal variations of soil moisture regime and soil water storage of artificial sand-fixing C. microphylla shrubs at different topographical sites in the sandy land were studied, and the evapotranspiration was measured by water balance method. The results showed that the soil moisture content of the shrubs was the highest in the lowland of dunes, followed by in the middle, and in the crest of the dunes, and increased with increasing depth. No water stress occurred during the growth season of the shrubs. Soil moisture content of the shrubs was highly related to precipitation event, and the relationship of soil moisture content with precipitation was higher in deep soil layer (50-180 cm) than in shallow soil layer (0-50 cm). The variation coefficient of soil moisture content was also higher in deep layer than in shallow layer. Soil water storage was increasing in the whole growth season of the shrubs, which meant that the accumulation of soil water occurred in this area. The evapotranspiriation of the shrubs occupied above 64% of the precipitation.

  12. Mapping the ecological dimensions and potential distributions of endangered relic shrubs in western Ordos biodiversity center

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Geng-Ping; Li, Hui-Qi; Zhao, Li; Man, Liang; Liu, Qiang

    2016-01-01

    Potential distributions of endemic relic shrubs in western Ordos were poorly mapped, which hindered our implementation of proper conservation. Here we investigated the applicability of ecological niche modeling for endangered relic shrubs to detect areas of priority for biodiversity conservation and analyze differences in ecological niche spaces used by relic shrubs. We applied ordination and niche modeling techniques to assess main environmental drivers of five endemic relic shrubs in western Ordos, namely, Ammopiptanthus mongolicus, Amygdalus mongolica, Helianthemum songaricum, Potaninia mongolica, and Tetraena mongolica. We calculated niche overlap metrics in gridded environmental spaces and compared geographical projections of ecological niches to determine similarities and differences of niches occupied by relic shrubs. All studied taxa presented different responses to environmental factors, which resulted in a unique combination of niche conditions. Precipitation availability and soil quality characteristics play important roles in the distributions of most shrubs. Each relic shrub is constrained by a unique set of environmental conditions, the distribution of one species cannot be implied by the distribution of another, highlighting the inadequacy of one-fits-all type of conservation measure. Our stacked habitat suitability maps revealed regions around Yellow River, which are highly suitable for most species, thereby providing high conservation value. PMID:27199260

  13. Range expansion of moose in arctic Alaska linked to warming and increased shrub habitat

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tape, Ken D.; Gustine, David D.; Reuss, Roger W.; Adams, Layne G.; Clark, Jason A.

    2016-01-01

    Twentieth century warming has increased vegetation productivity and shrub cover across northern tundra and treeline regions, but effects on terrestrial wildlife have not been demonstrated on a comparable scale. During this period, Alaskan moose (Alces alces gigas) extended their range from the boreal forest into tundra riparian shrub habitat; similar extensions have been observed in Canada (A. a. andersoni) and Eurasia (A. a. alces). Northern moose distribution is thought to be limited by forage availability above the snow in late winter, so the observed increase in shrub habitat could be causing the northward moose establishment, but a previous hypothesis suggested that hunting cessation triggered moose establishment. Here, we use recent changes in shrub cover and empirical relationships between shrub height and growing season temperature to estimate available moose habitat in Arctic Alaska c. 1860. We estimate that riparian shrubs were approximately 1.1 m tall c. 1860, greatly reducing the available forage above the snowpack, compared to 2 m tall in 2009. We believe that increases in riparian shrub habitat after 1860 allowed moose to colonize tundra regions of Alaska hundreds of kilometers north and west of previous distribution limits. The northern shift in the distribution of moose, like that of snowshoe hares, has been in response to the spread of their shrub habitat in the Arctic, but at the same time, herbivores have likely had pronounced impacts on the structure and function of these shrub communities. These northward range shifts are a bellwether for other boreal species and their associated predators.

  14. How will Shrub Expansion Impact Soil Carbon Sequestration in Arctic Tundra?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Czimczik, C. I.; Holden, S. R.; He, Y.; Randerson, J. T.

    2015-12-01

    Multiple lines of evidence suggest that plant productivity, and especially shrub abundance, is increasing in the Arctic in response to climate change. This greening is substantiated by increases in the Normalized Difference Vegetation Index, repeat photography and field observations. The implications of a greener Arctic on carbon sequestration by tundra ecosystems remain poorly understood. Here, we explore existing datasets of plant productivity and soil carbon stocks to quantify how greening, and in particular an expansion of woody shrubs, may translate to the sequestration of carbon in arctic soils. As an estimate of carbon storage in arctic tundra soils, we used the Northern Circumpolar Soil Carbon Database v2. As estimates of tundra type and productivity, we used the Circumpolar Arctic Vegetation map as well as the MODIS and Landsat Vegetation Continuous Fields, and MODIS GPP/NPP (MOD17) products. Preliminary findings suggest that in graminoid tundra and erect-shrub tundra higher shrub abundance is associated with greater soil carbon stocks. However, this relationship between shrub abundance and soil carbon is not apparent in prostrate-shrub tundra, or when comparing across graminoid tundra, erect-shrub tundra and prostrate-shrub tundra. Uncertainties originate from the extreme spatial (vertical and horizontal) heterogeneity of organic matter distribution in cryoturbated soils, the fact that (some) permafrost carbon stocks, e.g. yedoma, reflect previous rather than current vegetative cover, and small sample sizes, esp. in the High Arctic. Using Vegetation Continuous Fields and MODIS GPP/NPP (MOD17), we develop quantitative trajectories of soil carbon storage as a function of shrub cover and plant productivity in the Arctic (>60°N). We then compare our greening-derived carbon sequestration estimates to projected losses of carbon from thawing permafrost. Our findings will reduce uncertainties in the magnitude and timing of the carbon-climate feedback from the

  15. Greater deciduous shrub abundance extends tundra peak season and increases modeled net CO2 uptake.

    PubMed

    Sweet, Shannan K; Griffin, Kevin L; Steltzer, Heidi; Gough, Laura; Boelman, Natalie T

    2015-06-01

    Satellite studies of the terrestrial Arctic report increased summer greening and longer overall growing and peak seasons since the 1980s, which increases productivity and the period of carbon uptake. These trends are attributed to increasing air temperatures and reduced snow cover duration in spring and fall. Concurrently, deciduous shrubs are becoming increasingly abundant in tundra landscapes, which may also impact canopy phenology and productivity. Our aim was to determine the influence of greater deciduous shrub abundance on tundra canopy phenology and subsequent impacts on net ecosystem carbon exchange (NEE) during the growing and peak seasons in the arctic foothills region of Alaska. We compared deciduous shrub-dominated and evergreen/graminoid-dominated community-level canopy phenology throughout the growing season using the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI). We used a tundra plant-community-specific leaf area index (LAI) model to estimate LAI throughout the green season and a tundra-specific NEE model to estimate the impact of greater deciduous shrub abundance and associated shifts in both leaf area and canopy phenology on tundra carbon flux. We found that deciduous shrub canopies reached the onset of peak greenness 13 days earlier and the onset of senescence 3 days earlier compared to evergreen/graminoid canopies, resulting in a 10-day extension of the peak season. The combined effect of the longer peak season and greater leaf area of deciduous shrub canopies almost tripled the modeled net carbon uptake of deciduous shrub communities compared to evergreen/graminoid communities, while the longer peak season alone resulted in 84% greater carbon uptake in deciduous shrub communities. These results suggest that greater deciduous shrub abundance increases carbon uptake not only due to greater leaf area, but also due to an extension of the period of peak greenness, which extends the period of maximum carbon uptake.

  16. Increased Precipitation and Nitrogen Alter Shrub Architecture in a Desert Shrubland: Implications for Primary Production

    PubMed Central

    She, Weiwei; Zhang, Yuqing; Qin, Shugao; Wu, Bin; Bai, Yuxuan

    2016-01-01

    Shrublands are one of the major types of ecosystems in the desert regions of northern China, which is expected to be substantially more sensitive to global environmental changes, such as widespread nitrogen enrichment and precipitation changes, than other ecosystem types. However, the interactive effects of nitrogen and precipitation on them remain poorly understood. We conducted a fully factorial field experiment simulating three levels of precipitation (ambient, +20%, +40%) and with two levels of nitrogen deposition (ambient, 60 kg N ha-1 yr-1) in a desert shrubland in the Mu Us Desert of northern China. We used plant architectural traits (plant cover, volume, twig size and number) as proxies to predict aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP) of the dominant shrub (Artemisia ordosica Krasch), and assessed the responses of plant productivity and architectural traits to water and nitrogen addition. We found significant differences in twig size and number of A. ordosica under water and nitrogen treatments but not in shrub cover/volume, which suggest that twig size and number of the shrub species were more sensitive to environmental changes. The productivity of the overall community was sensitive to increased precipitation and nitrogen, and shrubs played a more important role than herbaceous plants in driving productivity in this ecosystem. Precipitation- and nitrogen-induced increases in vegetation production were positively associated with increases in twig size and number of the dominant shrub. Water addition enhanced the twig length of A. ordosica, while nitrogen addition resulted in increased twig density (the number of twigs per square meter). Water and nitrogen interacted to affect twig length, but not twig number and shrub ANPP. The trade-off, defined as negative covariance between twig size and number, was likely the mechanism underlying the responses of twig length and shrub ANPP to water and nitrogen interactions. Our results highlight the sensitivity

  17. Magnetic White Dwarfs with Heavy Elements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hardy, F.; Dufour, P.; Jordan, S.

    2017-03-01

    Using our newly developed model atmosphere code appropriate for magnetic white dwarfs with metal lines in the Paschen-Back regime, we study various magnetic white dwarfs and explore the effects of various parameters such as the field geometry and the convective efficiency.

  18. AR Sco: A Precessing White Dwarf Synchronar?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Katz, J. I.

    2017-02-01

    The emission of the white dwarf–M dwarf binary AR Sco is driven by the rapid synchronization of its white dwarf, rather than by accretion. Synchronization requires a magnetic field ∼100 Gauss at the M dwarf and ∼ {10}8 Gauss at the white dwarf, larger than the fields of most intermediate polars but within the range of fields of known magnetic white dwarfs. The spindown power is dissipated in the atmosphere of the M dwarf, within the near zone of the rotating white dwarf’s field, by magnetic reconnection, accelerating particles that produce the observed synchrotron radiation. The displacement of the optical maximum from conjunction may be explained either by dissipation in a bow wave as the white dwarf’s magnetic field sweeps past the M dwarf or by a misaligned white dwarf rotation axis and oblique magnetic moment. In the latter case the rotation axis precesses with a period of decades, predicting a drift in the orbital phase of the optical maximum. Binaries whose emission is powered by synchronization may be termed synchronars, in analogy to magnetars.

  19. Local Group dwarf galaxies: nature and nurture

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sawala, Till; Scannapieco, Cecilia; White, Simon

    2012-02-01

    We investigate the formation and evolution of dwarf galaxies in a high-resolution, hydrodynamical cosmological simulation of a Milky Way sized halo and its environment. Our simulation includes gas cooling, star formation, supernova feedback, metal enrichment and ultraviolet heating. In total, 90 satellites and more than 400 isolated dwarf galaxies are formed in the simulation, allowing a systematic study of the internal and environmental processes that determine their evolution. We find that 95 per cent of satellite galaxies are gas free at z= 0, and identify three mechanisms for gas loss: supernova feedback, tidal stripping and photoevaporation due to re-ionization. Gas-rich satellite galaxies are only found with total masses above ˜5 × 109 M⊙. In contrast, for isolated dwarf galaxies, a total mass of ˜109 M⊙ constitutes a sharp transition; less massive galaxies are predominantly gas free at z= 0, more massive, isolated dwarf galaxies are often able to retain their gas. In general, we find that the total mass of a dwarf galaxy is the main factor which determines its star formation, metal enrichment and its gas content, but that stripping may explain the observed difference in gas content between field dwarf galaxies and satellites with total masses close to 109 M⊙. We also find that a morphological transformation via tidal stripping of infalling, luminous dwarf galaxies whose dark matter is less concentrated than their stars cannot explain the high total mass-to-light ratios of the faint dwarf spheroidal galaxies.

  20. Contribution of sunflecks is minimal in expanding shrub thickets compared to temperate forest.

    PubMed

    Brantley, Steven T; Young, Donald R

    2009-04-01

    Ecological consequences of shrub encroachment are emerging as a key issue in the study of global change. In mesic grasslands, shrub encroachment can result in a fivefold increase in ecosystem leaf area index (LAI) and a concurrent reduction in understory light and herbaceous diversity. LAI and light attenuation are often higher for shrub thickets than for forest communities in the same region, yet little is known about the contribution of sunflecks in shrub-dominated systems. Our objective was to compare fine-scale spatial and temporal dynamics of understory light in shrub thickets to the light environment in typical forest communities. We used an array of quantum sensors to examine variation in diffuse and direct light and determined the relative contribution of sunflecks during midday in Morella cerifera shrub thickets, a 30-yr-old abandoned Pinus taeda plantation, and a mature, second-growth, deciduous forest. Instantaneous photosynthetic photon flux density (PPFD) was measured at 1-s intervals at five sites in each community during midday. In summer, understory light during midday in shrub thickets was approximately 0.8% of above-canopy light, compared to 1.9% and 5.4% in pine and deciduous forests, respectively. During summer, PPFD was uncorrelated between sensors as close as 0.075 m in shrub thickets compared to 0.175 m and 0.900 m in pine and deciduous forests, respectively, indicating that sunflecks in shrub thickets were generally small compared to sunflecks in the two forests. Sunflecks in shrub thickets were generally short (all <30 s) and relatively low in intensity (<150 micromol photons x m(-2) x s(-1)) and contributed only 5% of understory light during midday. Sunflecks were longer (up to 6 minutes) and more intense (up to 350 micromol photons x m(-2) x s(-1)) in the two forest communities and Contributed 31% and 22% of understory light during midday in pine and deciduous forest, respectively. The combination of high LAI and relatively short

  1. Browse evaluation of tall shrubs based on direct measurement of a management objective

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Keigley, R.B.; Frisina, M.R.; Kitchen, Stanley G.; Pendleton, Rosemary L.; Monaco, Thomas A.; Vernon, Jason

    2008-01-01

    The monitoring of Geyer willow was based on the following management objective: Browsing will prevent fewer than 50 percent of Geyer willow shrubs from growing taller than 3 m . Three questions were addressed: (1) Is browsing a potential factor? (2) If so, can young plants grow taller than 3 meters? (3) If not, is browsing the dominant factor? All shrubs were intensely browsed. With a post-browsing growth rate of 5.0 cm per yr, no shrub could grow 3 m tall. Analyses of stem growth rate excluded dominant roles for climate and plant vigor. Browsing and stem age were the dominant factors that limited growth to 3 m tall.

  2. Dust in Cluster Dwarf Elliptical Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De Looze, I.; Baes, M.; Fritz, J.; Verstappen, J.; Bendo, G. J.; Bianchi, S.; Bomans, D. J.; Boselli, A.; Clemens, M.; Corbelli, E.; Cortese, L.; Dariush, A.; Davies, J. I.; di Serego Alighieri, S.; Fadda, D.; Garcia-Appadoo, D. A.; Gavazzi, G.; Giovanardi, C.; Grossi, M.; Hughes, T. M.; Hunt, L. K.; Jones, A. P.; Madden, S.; Magrini, L.; Pierini, D.; Pohlen, M.; Sabatini, S.; Smith, M. W. L.; Vlahakis, C.; Xilouris, E. M.; Zibetti, S.

    Based on single cross-scan data of the Herschel Virgo Cluster Survey, we report the first detections of dust in cluster early-type dwarf galaxies: VCC 209, VCC 781 and VCC 951. All three galaxies have dust masses M d ≈ 105 - 106 M⊙ and average dust temperatures ≈ 16-20 K. Since these three early-type dwarfs reside in densely crowded regions close to the center of the Virgo cluster, and several H I-detected dwarfs in the outskirts of Virgo were not detected by Herschel(implying a dust content < 104 M⊙), this might imply that dust in dwarfs is more closely related to the molecular gas, which is more centrally peaked in a galaxy's potential well and therefore, not easily removed by any stripping mechanism. We conclude that the removal of interstellar dust from these early-type dwarfs appears to be less efficient than the removal of the H I gas.

  3. A white dwarf with an oxygen atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Kepler, S O; Koester, Detlev; Ourique, Gustavo

    2016-04-01

    Stars born with masses below around 10 solar masses end their lives as white dwarf stars. Their atmospheres are dominated by the lightest elements because gravitational diffusion brings the lightest element to the surface. We report the discovery of a white dwarf with an atmosphere completely dominated by oxygen, SDSS J124043.01+671034.68. After oxygen, the next most abundant elements in its atmosphere are neon and magnesium, but these are lower by a factor of ≥25 by number. The fact that no hydrogen or helium are observed is surprising. Oxygen, neon, and magnesium are the products of carbon burning, which occurs in stars at the high-mass end of pre-white dwarf formation. This star, a possible oxygen-neon white dwarf, will provide a rare observational test of the evolutionary paths toward white dwarfs.

  4. A white dwarf with an oxygen atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kepler, S. O.; Koester, Detlev; Ourique, Gustavo

    2016-04-01

    Stars born with masses below around 10 solar masses end their lives as white dwarf stars. Their atmospheres are dominated by the lightest elements because gravitational diffusion brings the lightest element to the surface. We report the discovery of a white dwarf with an atmosphere completely dominated by oxygen, SDSS J124043.01+671034.68. After oxygen, the next most abundant elements in its atmosphere are neon and magnesium, but these are lower by a factor of ≥25 by number. The fact that no hydrogen or helium are observed is surprising. Oxygen, neon, and magnesium are the products of carbon burning, which occurs in stars at the high-mass end of pre-white dwarf formation. This star, a possible oxygen-neon white dwarf, will provide a rare observational test of the evolutionary paths toward white dwarfs.

  5. Double White Dwarf Merger Rates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toonen, Silvia; Nelemans, Gijs; Portegies Zwart, Simon

    2013-01-01

    Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) are very successfully used as standard candles on cosmological distance scales, but so far the nature of the progenitor(s) is unclear. A possible scenario for SNe Ia are merging carbon/oxygen white dwarfs with a combined mass exceeding the Chandrasekhar mass. We determine the theoretical rates and delay time distribution of these mergers for two different common envelope prescriptions and metallicities. The shape of the delay time distributions is rather insensitive to the assumptions. The normalization is a factor ~3-13 too low compared to observations.

  6. Central Dark Matter Distribution In Dwarf Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oh, Se-Heon; Brook, C.; Governato, F.; Brinks, E.; Mayer, L.; de Blok, E.; Brooks, A.; Walter, F.

    2012-01-01

    Central dark matter distribution in dwarf galaxies Se-Heon Oh, Chris Brook, Fabio Governato, Elias Brinks, Lucio Mayer, W.J.G. de Blok, Alyson Brooks and Fabian Walter We present high-resolution mass models of 7 nearby dwarf galaxies from "The HI Nearby Galaxy Survey” (THINGS) and compare these with those from hydrodynamic simulations of dwarf galaxies assuming a ΛCDM cosmology. The simulations include the effect of baryonic feedback processes, such as gas cooling, star formation, cosmic UV background heating and most importantly, physically motivated gas outflows driven by supernovae (SNe). For the THINGS dwarf galaxies, we derive the mass models for the dark matter component by subtracting the contribution from baryons, derived from our HI observations and using the "Spitzer Infrared Nearby Galaxies Survey” (SINGS) 3.6μm data, from the total kinematics, leaving only the contribution by the Dark Matter halo. In parallel, we perform dark matter mass modeling of the simulated dwarf galaxies in exactly the same way as the observed THINGS dwarf galaxies. From a direct comparison between the observations and simulations, we find that the dark matter rotation curves of the simulated dwarf galaxies rise less steeply in the inner regions than those of dark-matter-only simulations based on the ΛCDM paradigm, and are more consistent with those of the THINGS dwarf galaxies. In addition, the mean value of the logarithmic inner dark matter density slopes, α, of the simulated galaxies is approximately -0.4 ± 0.1, which is in good agreement with α = -0.29 ± -0.07 of the THINGS dwarf galaxies. This shows that the baryonic feedback processes in the simulations are efficient in flattening the initial cusps with α = -1.0 to -1.5 predicted from dark-matter-only simulations, and render the dark matter halo mass distribution more similar to that observed in nearby dwarf galaxies.

  7. The luminosities of the coldest brown dwarfs

    SciTech Connect

    Tinney, C. G.; Faherty, Jacqueline K.; Kirkpatrick, J. Davy; Cushing, Mike; Morley, Caroline V.; Wright, Edward L.

    2014-11-20

    In recent years, brown dwarfs have been extended to a new Y-dwarf class with effective temperatures colder than 500 K and masses in the range of 5-30 Jupiter masses. They fill a crucial gap in observable atmospheric properties between the much colder gas-giant planets of our own solar system (at around 130 K) and both hotter T-type brown dwarfs and the hotter planets that can be imaged orbiting young nearby stars (both with effective temperatures in the range of 1500-1000 K). Distance measurements for these objects deliver absolute magnitudes that make critical tests of our understanding of very cool atmospheres. Here we report new distances for nine Y dwarfs and seven very late T dwarfs. These reveal that Y dwarfs do indeed represent a continuation of the T-dwarf sequence to both fainter luminosities and cooler temperatures. They also show that the coolest objects display a large range in absolute magnitude for a given photometric color. The latest atmospheric models show good agreement with the majority of these Y-dwarf absolute magnitudes. This is also the case for WISE0855-0714, the coldest and closest brown dwarf to the Sun, which shows evidence for water ice clouds. However, there are also some outstanding exceptions, which suggest either binarity or the presence of condensate clouds. The former is readily testable with current adaptive optics facilities. The latter would mean that the range of cloudiness in Y dwarfs is substantial with most hosting almost no clouds—while others have dense clouds, making them prime targets for future variability observations to study cloud dynamics.

  8. Panchromatic observations of dwarf starburst galaxies: Infant super star clusters and a low-luminosity AGN

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reines, Amy Ellen

    2011-01-01

    Globular star clusters and supermassive black holes are fundamental components of today's massive galaxies, with origins dating back to the very early universe. Both globular clusters and the seeds of supermassive black holes are believed to have formed in the progenitors of modern massive galaxies, although the details are poorly understood. Direct observations of these low-mass, distant, and hence faint systems are unobtainable with current capabilities. However, gas-rich dwarf starburst galaxies in the local universe, analogous in many ways to protogalaxies at high-redshift, can provide critical insight into the early stages of galaxy evolution including the formation of globular clusters and massive black holes. This thesis presents a panchromatic study of nearby dwarf starburst galaxies harboring nascent globular clusters still embedded in their birth material. Infant clusters are identified via their production of thermal radio emission at centimeter wavelengths, which comes from dense gas ionized by young massive stars. By combining radio observations with complementary data at ultraviolet, optical and infrared wavelengths, we obtain a comprehensive view of massive clusters emerging from their gaseous and dusty birth cocoons. This thesis also presents the first example of a nearby dwarf starburst galaxy hosting an actively accreting massive central black hole. The black hole in this dwarf galaxy is unusual in that it is not associated with a bulge, a nuclear star cluster, or any other well-defined nucleus, likely reflecting an early phase of black hole and galaxy evolution that has not been previously observed.

  9. Vegetation trends in a 31-year-old ponderosa pine plantation: Effect of different shrub densities. Forest Service research paper

    SciTech Connect

    McDonald, P.M.; Abbott, C.S.

    1997-04-01

    On a poor site in northern California, a brushfield community was treated in various ways which left initial densities of no shrubs, light, medium, and heavy shrubs. Density and development (height, foliar cover, crown volume) for three shrub species (alone and combined), one grass, and planted ponderosa pine in these categories were quantified from 1966 to 1992. Successional trends (ascendance and decline) are presented for these species and for forbs from 1962 (the date pines were planted) through 1992. Regression equations that model density and development are presented for the shrubs and pine. In general, greenleaf manzanita prospered during the study; snowbrush initially developed well, but then declined; Sierra plum endured, but was relegated to the understory; needlegrass invaded rapdily, peaked early, and was mostly gone by the end of the study. Only a trace of forb species remained by study end. Needlegrass displayed strong environmental preference, becoming dense and developing well in shrub-free areas, but was scarcely present in heavy shrubs. Ponderosa pine grew well in no-shrub plots, farily well in light-shrub plots, and poorly in medium- and heavy-shrub plots. Extensive testing showed that shrub foliar cover and crown volume per acre explained more variation in several pine parameters than shrub height or density.

  10. Increased temperatures negatively affect Juniperus communis seeds: evidence from transplant experiments along a latitudinal gradient.

    PubMed

    Gruwez, R; De Frenne, P; Vander Mijnsbrugge, K; Vangansbeke, P; Verheyen, K

    2016-05-01

    With a distribution range that covers most of the Northern hemisphere, common juniper (Juniperus communis) has one of the largest ranges of all vascular plant species. In several regions in Europe, however, populations are decreasing in size and number due to failing recruitment. One of the main causes for this failure is low seed viability. Observational evidence suggests that this is partly induced by climate warming, but our mechanistic understanding of this effect remains incomplete. Here, we experimentally assess the influence of temperature on two key developmental phases during sexual reproduction, i.e. gametogenesis and fertilisation (seed phase two, SP2) and embryo development (seed phase three, SP3). Along a latitudinal gradient from southern France to central Sweden, we installed a transplant experiment with shrubs originating from Belgium, a region with unusually low juniper seed viability. Seeds of both seed phases were sampled during three consecutive years, and seed viability assessed. Warming temperatures negatively affected the seed viability of both SP2 and SP3 seeds along the latitudinal gradient. Interestingly, the effect on embryo development (SP3) only occurred in the third year, i.e. when the gametogenesis and fertilisation also took place in warmer conditions. We found strong indications that this negative influence mostly acts via disrupting growth of the pollen tube, the development of the female gametophyte and fertilisation (SP2). This, in turn, can lead to failing embryo development, for example, due to nutritional problems. Our results confirm that climate warming can negatively affect seed viability of juniper.

  11. [Effects of moss crust on soil seed bank at southeast edge of Tengger Desert].

    PubMed

    Su, Yan-gui; Li, Xin-Rong; Jia, Rong-Liang; Pan, Yan-Xie

    2007-03-01

    An investigation was made on the soil seed bank at southeast edge of Tengger Desert with moss crust under natural and artificial vegetations. The results showed that the density of soil seed bank increased with the development of moss crust, which was 3.4 times higher under natural vegetation than under 24 years old artificial vegetation. In the seed bank, a total of 12 species belonging to 6 families were identified, among which, annuals occupied more than 70%. No perennial seeds were found under artificial vegetation, but under natural vegetation, 20% of the seeds were of perennials. As for semi-shrub seeds, they occupied 20% and 10% under artificial and natural, vegetation, respectively. Under artificial vegetation, the species richness index of soil seed bank was relatively lower, being about a half of that under natural vegetation. The species diversity index of the seed bank had a slight decrease with the development of moss crust under artificial vegetation, but increased to the maximum (0. 693) under natural vegetation. The species similarity index was 1 among the seed banks under artificial vegetations, and 0.4 between those under artificial and natural vegetation. The development of moss crust increased the roughness of surface soil and improved soil environment significantly, which could have positive effects on seed entrapment and plant establishment.

  12. Photosynthetic Acclimation to Temperature in the Desert Shrub, Larrea divaricata

    PubMed Central

    Armond, Paul A.; Schreiber, Ulrich; Björkman, Olle

    1978-01-01

    The response of photosynthetic electron transport and light-harvesting efficiency to high temperatures was studied in the desert shrub Larrea divaricata Cav. Plants were grown at day/night temperatures of 20/15, 32/25, or 45/33 C in rough approximation of natural seasonal temperature variations. The process of acclimation to high temperatures involves an enhancement of the stability of the interactions between the light-harvesting pigments and the photosystem reaction centers. As temperature is increased, the heat-induced dissociation of these complexes results in a decrease in the quantum yield of electron transport at limiting light intensity, followed by a loss of electron transport activity at rate-saturating light intensity. The decreased quantum yield can be attributed to a block of excitation energy transfer from chlorophyll b to chlorophyll a, and changes in the distribution of the excitation energy between photosystems II and I. The block of excitation energy transfer is characterized by a loss of the effectiveness of 480 nm light (absorbed primarily by chlorophyll b) to drive protochemical processes, as well as fluorescence emission by chlorophyll b. PMID:16660304

  13. Mutual positive effects between shrubs in an arid ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    Tirado, Reyes; Bråthen, Kari Anne; Pugnaire, Francisco I.

    2015-01-01

    One-way facilitation in plants has been found in many harsh environments and their role as structural forces governing species composition in plant communities is now well established. However, reciprocal positive effects benefiting two interacting species have seldom been reported and, in recent reviews, conceptually considered merely as facilitation when in fact there is room for adaptive strategies and evolutionary responses. We tested the existence of such reciprocal positive effects in an arid environment in SE Spain using spatial pattern analysis, a species removal experiment, and a natural experiment. We found that the spatial association between Maytenus senegalensis and Whitania frutescens, two shrub species of roughly similar size intimately interacting in our community, resulted in mutual benefit for both species. Benefits included improved water relations and nutritional status and protection against browsing, and did occur despite simultaneous competition for resources. Our data suggest two-way facilitation or, rather, a facultative mutualism among higher plant species, a process often overlooked which could be a main driver of plant community dynamics allowing for evolutionary processes. PMID:26419958

  14. PREFACE: 16th European White Dwarfs Workshop

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garcia-Berro, Enrique; Hernanz, Margarita; Isern, Jordi; Torres, Santiago

    2009-07-01

    The 16th European Workshop on White Dwarfs was held in Barcelona, Spain, from 30 June to 4 July 2008 at the premises of the UPC. Almost 120 participants from Europe (France, Germany, United Kingdom, Italy, and several others), America (USA, Canada, Argentina, Brazil, and Chile), and other continents (Australia, South Africa, . . . ) attended the workshop. Among these participants were the most relevant specialists in the field. The topics covered by the conference were: White dwarf structure and evolution Progenitors and Planetary Nebulae White dwarfs in binaries: cataclysmic variables, double degenerates and other binaries White dwarfs, dust disks and planetary systems Atmospheres, chemical composition, magnetic fields Variable white dwarfs White dwarfs in stellar clusters and the halo White Dwarfs as SNIa progenitors The programme included 54 talks, and 45 posters. The oral presentations were distributed into the following sessions: Luminosity function, mass function and populations White dwarf structure and evolution White dwarf ages White dwarf catalogs and surveys Central stars of planetary nebulae Supernovae progenitors White dwarfs in novae and CVs Physical processes in white dwarfs and magnetic white dwarfs Disks, dust and planets around white dwarfs Pulsating white dwarfs Additionally we had a special open session about Spitzer and white dwarfs. The Proceedings of the 16th European Workshop on White Dwarfs are representative of the current state-of-the-art of the research field and include new and exciting results. We acknowledge the very positive attitude of the attendants to the workshop, which stimulated very fruitful discussions that took place in all the sessions and after the official schedule. Also, the meeting allowed new collaborations tp start that will undoubtedly result in significant advances in the research field. We also acknowledge the willingness of the participants to deliver their contributions before the final deadline. We sincerely

  15. The effect of plant growth regulators, nitric oxide, nitrate, nitrite and light on the germination of dimorphic seeds of Suaeda salsa under saline conditions.

    PubMed

    Li, Weiqiang; Liu, Xiaojing; Ajmal Khan, M; Yamaguchi, Shinjiro

    2005-06-01

    Suaeda salsa, a leaf succulent shrub in the family Chenopodiaceae, is one of the most important halophytes in China. Suaeda salsa produces dimorphic seeds (soft brown seeds and hard black seeds). Seeds of S. salsa were collected from the coastal salt flats near Huanghua City, China. Experiments were conducted to determine the salinity-alleviating effect of plant growth regulators, nitric oxide, nitrate, nitrite and light on the germination of dimorphic seeds of S. salsa. Brown seeds had a higher germination rate than black seeds in all experiments. Black seeds were more sensitive to salt in the absence of light in comparison to brown seeds. Brown seeds absorbed water more quickly in comparison to black seeds and were found to be more tolerant of salt stress. Our results showed that 1-aminocyclopropane-1-carboxylate (ACC, the immediate precursor of ethylene), nitrite, GA(4) and BA improved seed germination in the presence of salt. However, nitrate, GA(1), GA(3) failed to alleviate salt stress. ABA inhibited seed germination and seedling growth. Possible mechanisms involved in the alleviation of salt stress in S. salsa seeds and the ecological adaptation of the seeds to the environment are discussed.

  16. Keck Telescope Observations of Externally-Polluted White Dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zuckerman, Ben M.; NASA, Research was Supported in Part by

    2013-01-01

    Beginning in the late 1990s the Keck telescope and HIRES echelle spectrometer have contributed mightily to investigations of white dwarf photospheres that contain elements heavier than helium that have been accreted from surrounding planetary systems. Today we report new Keck measurements of helium atmosphere (DB and DZ) white dwarfs, of Hyades white dwarfs, and of white dwarfs in binary systems.

  17. Brown dwarf disks with ALMA

    SciTech Connect

    Ricci, L.; Isella, A.; Testi, L.; De Gregorio-Monsalvo, I.; Natta, A.; Scholz, A.

    2014-08-10

    We present Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array continuum and spectral line data at 0.89 mm and 3.2 mm for three disks surrounding young brown dwarfs and very low mass stars in the Taurus star forming region. Dust thermal emission is detected and spatially resolved for all the three disks, while CO(J = 3-2) emission is seen in two disks. We analyze the continuum visibilities and constrain the disks' physical structure in dust. The results of our analysis show that the disks are relatively large; the smallest one has an outer radius of about 70 AU. The inferred disk radii, radial profiles of the dust surface density, and disk to central object mass ratios lie within the ranges found for disks around more massive young stars. We derive from our observations the wavelength dependence of the millimeter dust opacity. In all the three disks, data are consistent with the presence of grains with at least millimeter sizes, as also found for disks around young stars, and confirm that the early stages of the solid growth toward planetesimals occur also around very low-mass objects. We discuss the implications of our findings on models of solids evolution in protoplanetary disks, the main mechanisms proposed for the formation of brown dwarfs and very low-mass stars, as well as the potential of finding rocky and giant planets around very low-mass objects.

  18. Angular Momentum of Dwarf Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Butler, Kirsty M.; Obreschkow, Danail; Oh, Se-Heon

    2017-01-01

    We present measurements of baryonic mass {M}{{b}} and specific angular momentum (sAM) {j}{{b}} in 14 rotating dwarf Irregular (dIrr) galaxies from the LITTLE THINGS sample. These measurements, based on 21 cm kinematic data from the Very Large Array and stellar mass maps from the Spitzer Space Telescope, extend previous AM measurements by more than two orders of magnitude in {M}{{b}}. The dwarf galaxies show systematically higher {j}{{b}} values than expected from the {j}{{b}}\\propto {M}{{b}}2/3 scaling of spiral galaxies, representative of a scale-free galaxy formation scenario. This offset can be explained by decreasing baryon mass fractions {f}{{M}}={M}{{b}}/{M}{dyn} (where {M}{dyn} is the dynamical mass) with decreasing {M}{{b}} (for {M}{{b}}< {10}11 {M}ȯ ). We find that the sAM of neutral atomic hydrogen (H i) alone is about 2.5 times higher than that of the stars. The M–j relation of H i is significantly steeper than that of the stars, as a direct consequence of the systematic variation of the H i fraction with {M}{{b}}.

  19. Polarization of Young Brown Dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Manjavacas, Elena; Miles-Páez, Paulo A.; Zapatero-Osorio, Maria Rosa; Goldman, Bertrand; Buenzli, Esther; Henning, Thomas; Pallé, Enric

    2016-08-01

    Linear polarization due to scattering processes can be used as a probe of the existence of atmospheric condensates in ultracool dwarfs. Models predict that the observed linear polarization increases with the degree of oblateness, which is inverse to the surface gravity.We aimed to measure optical linear polarization from a sample of six young brown dwarfs, with spectral types between M6 to L2, and cataloged previously as objects with low gravity using spectroscopy. These targets are believed to have dusty atmospheres as a consequence of their low gravity, therefore linearly polarized light is expected from these objects.Linear polarimetric data were collected in I and R-band using CAFOS at the 2.2m telescope in Calar Alto Observatory.We obtained results of linear polarization in the I-band compatible with non polarization for all the objects, and similar results for the polarization degree in the R-band for all objects with the exception of 2M0422. For this object we find a linear polarization degree of 0.81+-0.18%. 2M0422 is 10 deg to the south of the Taurus star-forming region, thus, we suspect that its polarization is caused by the dust in the cloud in which 2M0422 might be embedded.

  20. Watch Out for Your Neighbor: Climbing onto Shrubs Is Related to Risk of Cannibalism in the Scorpion Buthus cf. occitanus

    PubMed Central

    Urbano-Tenorio, Fernando

    2016-01-01

    The distribution and behavior of foraging animals usually imply a balance between resource availability and predation risk. In some predators such as scorpions, cannibalism constitutes an important mortality factor determining their ecology and behavior. Climbing on vegetation by scorpions has been related both to prey availability and to predation (cannibalism) risk. We tested different hypotheses proposed to explain climbing on vegetation by scorpions. We analyzed shrub climbing in Buthus cf. occitanus with regard to the following: a) better suitability of prey size for scorpions foraging on shrubs than on the ground, b) selection of shrub species with higher prey load, c) seasonal variations in prey availability on shrubs, and d) whether or not cannibalism risk on the ground increases the frequency of shrub climbing. Prey availability on shrubs was compared by estimating prey abundance in sticky traps placed in shrubs. A prey sample from shrubs was measured to compare prey size. Scorpions were sampled in six plots (50 m x 10 m) to estimate the proportion of individuals climbing on shrubs. Size difference and distance between individuals and their closest scorpion neighbor were measured to assess cannibalism risk. The results showed that mean prey size was two-fold larger on the ground. Selection of particular shrub species was not related to prey availability. Seasonal variations in the number of scorpions on shrubs were related to the number of active scorpions, but not with fluctuations in prey availability. Size differences between a scorpion and its nearest neighbor were positively related with a higher probability for a scorpion to climb onto a shrub when at a disadvantage, but distance was not significantly related. These results do not support hypotheses explaining shrub climbing based on resource availability. By contrast, our results provide evidence that shrub climbing is related to cannibalism risk. PMID:27655347

  1. [Assemblage effect of ground arthropod community in desert steppe shrubs with different ages].

    PubMed

    Liu, Ren-Tao; Zhu, Fan; Chai, Yong-Qing

    2014-01-01

    Taking the 6-, 15-, 24- and 36-year-old Caragana intermedia shrubs in desert steppe as a subject, an investigation on soil properties and ground arthropod community was carried out under the shrub and in the open to probe into the assemblage effect of ground arthropod community in desert steppe shrubs with different ages. The results were as follows: 1) In the 6-year-old shrubland, significant differences were only found in soil physical properties (soil texture, soil moisture and electrical conductivity) between the microhabitats under shrub and in the open. Beginning from the 15-year-old shrubland, however, soil organic matter and nutrition (N, P) increased significantly. 2) A total of 27 groups were captured in the studied sites which dominated by Carabidae, Tenebrionidae and Formicidae. From 6- to 15-year-old shrubland, the number of dominant groups decreased while that of common groups increased for the ground arthropod community under the shrub. From 15- to 24- and 36-year-old shrubland, the difference between the microhabitats under the shrub and in the open decreased firstly, and then increased. Some special groups appeared under the shrub in the 36-year-old shrubland, and dung beetles became dominant. 3) In the 6- and 24-year-old shrublands, there were no significant differences in group richness, abundance, and diversity index between the microhabitats under the shrub and in the open. As for the 15- and 36-year-old shrublands, however, significant differences were observed. 4) The shrub age had a stronger effect on the distribution of ground arthropods living under the shrubs compared to that in the open. The changes in soil texture, pH and electrical conductivity could significantly influence on the distribution of ground arthropods under the shrub, also in the open to some degree. It was suggested that the development of shrubland had strong impact on assemblage effect of ground arthropods, which was closely correlated with the stand age and would

  2. Inclusion of Tithonia diversifolia in multinutrient blocks for WestAfrican dwarf goats fed Brachiaria straw.

    PubMed

    Tendonkeng, Fernand; Fogang Zogang, Bienvenu; Sawa, Camara; Boukila, Benoît; Pamo, Etienne Tedonkeng

    2014-08-01

    Recent investigations suggest that the development of multinutrient feed blocks with inclusion of tree and shrub leaves could improve the nutritive value and digestibility of straw. In order to test these possibilities, three types of multinutrient blocks (MNB) namely: MNB0 (wheat bran = 100%; Tithonia diversifolia leaf = 0%), MNB50 (wheat bran = 50%; T. diversifolia leaf = 50%) and MNB100 (wheat bran = 0%; T. diversifolia leaf = 100%) were fed for 15 days in a 3 × 3 Latin square arrangement to West African dwarf goats consuming Brachiaria ruziziensis straw. The blocks presented a good cohesion and a good hardness. The inclusion of T. diversifolia improved levels of crude protein, mineral, feed unit for milk production (UFL) and feed unit for meat production (UFV), but decreased palatability. The effects on the digestibility of B. ruziziensis straw were evaluated in nine West African dwarf goats fed individually with MNB0 + straw, MNB50 + straw and MNB100 + straw. The dry matter, organic matter and crude fibre digestibility of B. ruziziensis straw increased slightly with increasing level of inclusion of T. diversifolia. The apparent digestibility of nitrogen was comparable for all diets independent of the level of inclusion of T. diversifolia. This study showed that the inclusion of T. diversifolia leaves in the MNBs can be recommended to improve the feeding of goats during periods of drought.

  3. AmeriFlux US-Whs Walnut Gulch Lucky Hills Shrub

    SciTech Connect

    Scott, Russ

    2016-01-01

    This is the AmeriFlux version of the carbon flux data for the site US-Whs Walnut Gulch Lucky Hills Shrub. Site Description - A semiarid Chihuahuan Desert shrubland located in the USDA-ARS Walnut Gulch Experimental Watershed (WGEW) surrounding the town of Tombstone, AZ. The site vegetation is comprised of a diverse stand of mainly Chihuahuan desert shrub species like acacia constricta, larrea tridentata, and florensia cernua.

  4. How Spatial Heterogeneity of Cover Affects Patterns of Shrub Encroachment into Mesic Grasslands

    PubMed Central

    Montané, Francesc; Casals, Pere; Dale, Mark R. T.

    2011-01-01

    We used a multi-method approach to analyze the spatial patterns of shrubs and cover types (plant species, litter or bare soil) in grassland-shrubland ecotones. This approach allows us to assess how fine-scale spatial heterogeneity of cover types affects the patterns of Cytisus balansae shrub encroachment into mesic mountain grasslands (Catalan Pyrenees, Spain). Spatial patterns and the spatial associations between juvenile shrubs and different cover types were assessed in mesic grasslands dominated by species with different palatabilities (palatable grass Festuca nigrescens and unpalatable grass Festuca eskia). A new index, called RISES (“Relative Index of Shrub Encroachment Susceptibility”), was proposed to calculate the chances of shrub encroachment into a given grassland, combining the magnitude of the spatial associations and the surface area for each cover type. Overall, juveniles showed positive associations with palatable F. nigrescens and negative associations with unpalatable F. eskia, although these associations shifted with shrub development stage. In F. eskia grasslands, bare soil showed a low scale of pattern and positive associations with juveniles. Although the highest RISES values were found in F. nigrescens plots, the number of juvenile Cytisus was similar in both types of grasslands. However, F. nigrescens grasslands showed the greatest number of juveniles in early development stage (i.e. height<10 cm) whereas F. eskia grasslands showed the greatest number of juveniles in late development stages (i.e. height>30 cm). We concluded that in F. eskia grasslands, where establishment may be constrained by the dominant cover type, the low scale of pattern on bare soil may result in higher chances of shrub establishment and survival. In contrast, although grasslands dominated by the palatable F. nigrescens may be more susceptible to shrub establishment; current grazing rates may reduce juvenile survival. PMID:22174858

  5. Greater shrub dominance alters breeding habitat and food resources for migratory songbirds in Alaskan arctic tundra.

    PubMed

    Boelman, Natalie T; Gough, Laura; Wingfield, John; Goetz, Scott; Asmus, Ashley; Chmura, Helen E; Krause, Jesse S; Perez, Jonathan H; Sweet, Shannan K; Guay, Kevin C

    2015-04-01

    Climate warming is affecting the Arctic in multiple ways, including via increased dominance of deciduous shrubs. Although many studies have focused on how this vegetation shift is altering nutrient cycling and energy balance, few have explicitly considered effects on tundra fauna, such as the millions of migratory songbirds that breed in northern regions every year. To understand how increasing deciduous shrub dominance may alter breeding songbird habitat, we quantified vegetation and arthropod community characteristics in both graminoid and shrub dominated tundra. We combined measurements of preferred nest site characteristics for Lapland longspurs (Calcarius lapponicus) and Gambel's White-crowned sparrows (Zonotrichia leucophrys gambelii) with modeled predictions for the distribution of plant community types in the Alaskan arctic foothills region for the year 2050. Lapland longspur nests were found in sedge-dominated tussock tundra where shrub height does not exceed 20 cm, whereas White-crowned sparrows nested only under shrubs between 20 cm and 1 m in height, with no preference for shrub species. Shrub canopies had higher canopy-dwelling arthropod availability (i.e. small flies and spiders) but lower ground-dwelling arthropod availability (i.e. large spiders and beetles). Since flies are the birds' preferred prey, increasing shrubs may result in a net enhancement in preferred prey availability. Acknowledging the coarse resolution of existing tundra vegetation models, we predict that by 2050 there will be a northward shift in current White-crowned sparrow habitat range and a 20-60% increase in their preferred habitat extent, while Lapland longspur habitat extent will be equivalently reduced. Our findings can be used to make first approximations of future habitat change for species with similar nesting requirements. However, we contend that as exemplified by this study's findings, existing tundra modeling tools cannot yet simulate the fine-scale habitat

  6. Scrub-shrub bird habitat associations at multiple spatial scales in beaver meadows in Massachusetts

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chandler, R.B.; King, D.I.; DeStefano, S.

    2009-01-01

    Most scrub-shrub bird species are declining in the northeastern United States, and these declines are largely attributed to regional declines in habitat availability. American Beaver (Castor canadensis; hereafter "beaver") populations have been increasing in the Northeast in recent decades, and beavers create scrub-shrub habitat through their dam-building and foraging activities. Few systematic studies have been conducted on the value of beaver-modified habitats for scrub-shrub birds, and these data are important for understanding habitat selection of scrub-shrub birds as well as for assessing regional habitat availability for these species. We conducted surveys in 37 beaver meadows in a 2,800-km2 study area in western Massachusetts during 2005 and 2006 to determine the extent to which these beaver-modified habitats are used by scrub-shrub birds, as well as the characteristics of beaver meadows most closely related to bird use. We modeled bird abundance in relation to microhabitat-, patch-, and landscape-context variables while adjusting for survey-specific covariates affecting detectability using N-mixture models. We found that scrub-shrub birds of regional conservation concern occupied these sites and that birds responded differently to microhabitat, patch, and landscape characteristics of beaver meadows. Generally, scrub-shrub birds increased in abundance along a gradient of increasing vegetation complexity, and three species were positively related to patch size. We conclude that these habitats can potentially play an important role in regional conservation of scrub-shrub birds and recommend that conservation priority be given to larger beaver meadows with diverse vegetation structure and composition. ?? 2009 by The American Ornithologists' Union. All rights reserved.

  7. Impacts of leguminous shrub encroachment on neighboring grasses include transfer of fixed nitrogen.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hai-Yang; Yu, Qiang; Lü, Xiao-Tao; Trumbore, Susan E; Yang, Jun-Jie; Han, Xing-Guo

    2016-04-01

    Shrub encroachment induced by global change and human disturbance strongly affects ecosystem structure and function. In this study, we explore the degree to which invading leguminous shrubs affected neighboring grasses, including via the transfer of fixed nitrogen (N). We measured N concentrations and natural abundance (15)N of shoot tissues from three dominant grasses from different plant functional groups across seven distances along a local transect (up to 500 cm) to the leguminous shrub, Caragana microphylla. C. microphylla did transfer fixed N to neighboring grasses, but the amount and distance of N transferred were strongly species-specific. Shoot N concentrations decreased significantly with distance from C. microphylla, for a rhizomatous grass, Leymus chinensis, and a bunchgrass, Achnatherum sibiricum. However, N concentrations of another bunchgrass, Stipa grandis, were higher only directly underneath the shrub canopy. Shoot δ(15)N values of L. chinensis were enriched up to 500 cm from the shrub, but for S. grandis were enriched only below the shrub canopy. In contrast, δ(15)N of A. sibiricum did not change along the 500-cm transect. Our results indicated the rhizomatous grass transferred fixed N over long distances while bunchgrasses did not. The presence of C. microphylla increased the shoot biomass of L. chinensis but decreased that of S. grandis and A. sibiricum. These findings highlight the potential role of nutrient-acquisition strategies of neighboring grasses in moderating the interspecific variation of fixed N transfer from the leguminous shrub. Overall, leguminous shrubs have either positive or negative effects on the neighboring grasses and dramatically affect plant community composition and structure.

  8. Heterogeneity of soil surface temperature induced by xerophytic shrub in a revegetated desert ecosystem, northwestern China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Ya-Feng; Wang, Xin-Ping; Pan, Yan-Xia; Hu, Rui; Zhang, Hao

    2013-06-01

    Variation characteristics of the soil surface temperature induced by shrub canopy greatly affects the near-surface biological and biochemical processes in desert ecosystems. However, information regarding the effects of shrub upon the heterogeneity of soil surface temperature is scarce. Here we aimed to characterize the effects of shrub ( Caragana korshinskii) canopy on the soil surface temperature heterogeneity at areas under shrub canopy and the neighbouring bare ground. Diurnal variations of soil surface temperature were measured at areas adjacent to the shrub base (ASB), beneath the midcanopy (BMC), and in the bare intershrub spaces (BIS) at the eastern, southern, western and northern aspects of shrub, respectively. Results indicated that diurnal mean soil surface temperature under the C. korshinskii canopy (ASB and BMC) was significantly lower than in the BIS, with the highest in the BIS, followed by the BMC and ASB. The diurnal maximum and diurnal variations of soil surface temperatures under canopy vary strongly with different aspects of shrub with the diurnal variation in solar altitude, which could be used as cues to detect safe sites for under-canopy biota. A significant empirical linear relationship was found between soil surface temperature and solar altitude, suggesting an empirical predicator that solar altitude can serve for soil surface temperature. Lower soil surface temperatures under the canopy than in the bare intershrub spaces imply that shrubs canopy play a role of `cool islands' in the daytime in terms of soil surface temperature during hot summer months in the desert ecosystems characterized by a mosaic of sparse vegetation and bare ground.

  9. How spatial heterogeneity of cover affects patterns of shrub encroachment into mesic grasslands.

    PubMed

    Montané, Francesc; Casals, Pere; Dale, Mark R T

    2011-01-01

    We used a multi-method approach to analyze the spatial patterns of shrubs and cover types (plant species, litter or bare soil) in grassland-shrubland ecotones. This approach allows us to assess how fine-scale spatial heterogeneity of cover types affects the patterns of Cytisus balansae shrub encroachment into mesic mountain grasslands (Catalan Pyrenees, Spain). Spatial patterns and the spatial associations between juvenile shrubs and different cover types were assessed in mesic grasslands dominated by species with different palatabilities (palatable grass Festuca nigrescens and unpalatable grass Festuca eskia). A new index, called RISES ("Relative Index of Shrub Encroachment Susceptibility"), was proposed to calculate the chances of shrub encroachment into a given grassland, combining the magnitude of the spatial associations and the surface area for each cover type. Overall, juveniles showed positive associations with palatable F. nigrescens and negative associations with unpalatable F. eskia, although these associations shifted with shrub development stage. In F. eskia grasslands, bare soil showed a low scale of pattern and positive associations with juveniles. Although the highest RISES values were found in F. nigrescens plots, the number of juvenile Cytisus was similar in both types of grasslands. However, F. nigrescens grasslands showed the greatest number of juveniles in early development stage (i.e. height<10 cm) whereas F. eskia grasslands showed the greatest number of juveniles in late development stages (i.e. height>30 cm). We concluded that in F. eskia grasslands, where establishment may be constrained by the dominant cover type, the low scale of pattern on bare soil may result in higher chances of shrub establishment and survival. In contrast, although grasslands dominated by the palatable F. nigrescens may be more susceptible to shrub establishment; current grazing rates may reduce juvenile survival.

  10. SDSS DR7 WHITE DWARF CATALOG

    SciTech Connect

    Kleinman, S. J.; Nitta, A.; Kepler, S. O.; Pelisoli, Ingrid; Pecanha, Viviane; Costa, J. E. S.; Koester, D.; Krzesinski, J.; Dufour, P.; Lachapelle, F.-R.; Bergeron, P.; Yip, Ching-Wa; Harris, Hugh C.; Eisenstein, Daniel J.; Althaus, L.; Corsico, A.

    2013-01-15

    We present a new catalog of spectroscopically confirmed white dwarf stars from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) Data Release 7 spectroscopic catalog. We find 20,407 white dwarf spectra, representing 19,712 stars, and provide atmospheric model fits to 14,120 DA and 1011 DB white dwarf spectra from 12,843 and 923 stars, respectively. These numbers represent more than a factor of two increase in the total number of white dwarf stars from the previous SDSS white dwarf catalogs based on DR4 data. Our distribution of subtypes varies from previous catalogs due to our more conservative, manual classifications of each star in our catalog, supplementing our automatic fits. In particular, we find a large number of magnetic white dwarf stars whose small Zeeman splittings mimic increased Stark broadening that would otherwise result in an overestimated log g if fit as a non-magnetic white dwarf. We calculate mean DA and DB masses for our clean, non-magnetic sample and find the DB mean mass is statistically larger than that for the DAs.

  11. THE METALLICITY OF VOID DWARF GALAXIES

    SciTech Connect

    Kreckel, K.; Groves, B.; Croxall, K.; Pogge, R. W.; Van de Weygaert, R.

    2015-01-01

    The current ΛCDM cosmological model predicts that galaxy evolution proceeds more slowly in lower density environments, suggesting that voids are a prime location to search for relatively pristine galaxies that are representative of the building blocks of early massive galaxies. To test the assumption that void galaxies are more pristine, we compare the evolutionary properties of a sample of dwarf galaxies selected specifically to lie in voids with a sample of similar isolated dwarf galaxies in average density environments. We measure gas-phase oxygen abundances and gas fractions for eight dwarf galaxies (M{sub r} > –16.2), carefully selected to reside within the lowest density environments of seven voids, and apply the same calibrations to existing samples of isolated dwarf galaxies. We find no significant difference between these void dwarf galaxies and the isolated dwarf galaxies, suggesting that dwarf galaxy chemical evolution proceeds independent of the large-scale environment. While this sample is too small to draw strong conclusions, it suggests that external gas accretion is playing a limited role in the chemical evolution of these systems, and that this evolution is instead dominated mainly by the internal secular processes that are linking the simultaneous growth and enrichment of these galaxies.

  12. An overview of white dwarf stars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fontaine, G.; Brassard, P.; Charpinet, S.; Randall, S. K.; Van Grootel, V.

    2013-03-01

    We present a brief summary of what is currently known about white dwarf stars, with an emphasis on their evolutionary and internal properties. As is well known, white dwarfs represent the end products of stellar evolution for the vast majority of stars and, as such, bear the signatures of past events (such as mass loss, mixing phases, loss and redistribution of angular momentum, and thermonuclear burning) that are of essential importance in the evolution of stars in general. In addition, white dwarf stars represent ideal testbeds for our understanding of matter under extreme conditions, and work on their constitutive physics (neutrino production rates, conductive and radiative opacities, interior liquid/solid equations of state, partially ionized and partially degenerate envelope equations of state, diffusion coefficients, line broadening mechanisms) is still being actively pursued. Given a set of constitutive physics, cooling white dwarfs can be used advantageously as cosmochronometers. Moreover, the field has been blessed by the existence of four distinct families of pulsating white dwarfs, each mapping a different evolutionary phase, and this allows the application of the asteroseismological method to probe and test their internal structure and evolutionary state. We set the stage for the reviews that follow on cooling white dwarfs as cosmochronometers and physics laboratories, as well as on the properties of pulsating white dwarfs and the asteroseismological results that can be inferred.

  13. Evaluating shrub-associated spatial patterns of soil properties in a shrub-steppe ecosystem using multiple-variable geostatistics

    SciTech Connect

    Halvorson, J.J.; Smith, J.L. |; Bolton, H. Jr.; Rossi, R.E.

    1995-09-01

    Geostatistics are often calculated for a single variable at a time, even though many natural phenomena are functions of several variables. The objective of this work was to demonstrate a nonparametric approach for assessing the spatial characteristics of multiple-variable phenomena. Specifically, we analyzed the spatial characteristics of resource islands in the soil under big sagebrush (Artemisia tridentala Nutt.), a dominant shrub in the intermountain western USA. For our example, we defined resource islands as a function of six soil variables representing concentrations of soil resources, populations of microorganisms, and soil microbial physiological variables. By collectively evaluating the indicator transformations of these individual variables, we created a new data set, termed a multiple-variable indicator transform or MVIT. Alternate MVITs were obtained by varying the selection criteria. Each MVIT was analyzed with variography to characterize spatial continuity, and with indicator kriging to predict the combined probability of their occurrence at unsampled locations in the landscape. Simple graphical analysis and variography demonstrated spatial dependence for all individual soil variables. Maps derived from ordinary kriging of MVITs suggested that the combined probabilities for encountering zones of above-median resources were greatest near big sagebrush. 51 refs., 5 figs., 1 tab.

  14. Photosynthate allocations patterns and mode of postfire reproduction in two shrub species from the California chaparral

    SciTech Connect

    Sparks, S.R.

    1989-01-01

    Age-specific patterns of photosynthate allocation in leaves were investigated for two chaparral shrubs, Adenostoma fasciculatum and Ceanothus greggii, in five stands of various ages. Branches of shrubs were labeled with {sup 14}CO{sub 2}, and seasonal allocation of {sup 14}C-labeled photosynthate to storage, defense, metabolic, and structural compounds was followed. Age-specific allocation patterns were found only in the spring, when older shrubs showed a reduced allocation of photosynthate within leaves to storage compounds. Older shrubs may be less able than younger shrubs to allocate photosynthate to storage compounds when demands on photosynthate for growth are high. The influence of senescence on postfire sprouting was investigated by quantifying the proportion of standing dead biomass in A. fasciculatum, as well as other shrub structural characteristics, before an experimental burn. After the burn, sprout production during the first postfire season was determined and correlated with prefire structural characteristics. Photosynthate allocation to shoots and roots was investigated for seedlings of both species.

  15. Abscission is regulated by the ESCRT-III protein shrub in Drosophila germline stem cells.

    PubMed

    Matias, Neuza Reis; Mathieu, Juliette; Huynh, Jean-René

    2015-02-01

    Abscission is the final event of cytokinesis that leads to the physical separation of the two daughter cells. Recent technical advances have allowed a better understanding of the cellular and molecular events leading to abscission in isolated yeast or mammalian cells. However, how abscission is regulated in different cell types or in a developing organism remains poorly understood. Here, we characterized the function of the ESCRT-III protein Shrub during cytokinesis in germ cells undergoing a series of complete and incomplete divisions. We found that Shrub is required for complete abscission, and that levels of Shrub are critical for proper timing of abscission. Loss or gain of Shrub delays abscission in germline stem cells (GSCs), and leads to the formation of stem-cysts, where daughter cells share the same cytoplasm as the mother stem cell and cannot differentiate. In addition, our results indicate a negative regulation of Shrub by the Aurora B kinase during GSC abscission. Finally, we found that Lethal giant discs (lgd), known to be required for Shrub function in the endosomal pathway, also regulates the duration of abscission in GSCs.

  16. Above- and Belowground Biomass Allocation in Shrub Biomes across the Northeast Tibetan Plateau.

    PubMed

    Nie, Xiuqing; Yang, Yuanhe; Yang, Lucun; Zhou, Guoying

    2016-01-01

    Biomass partitioning has been explored across various biomes. However, the strategies of allocation in plants still remain contentious. This study investigated allocation patterns of above- and belowground biomass at the community level, using biomass survey from the Tibetan Plateau. We explored above- and belowground biomass by conducting three consecutive sampling campaigns across shrub biomes on the northeast Tibetan Plateau during 2011-2013. We then documented the above-ground biomass (AGB), below-ground biomass (BGB) and root: shoot ratio (R/S) and the relationships between R/S and environment factors using data from 201 plots surveyed from 67 sites. We further examined relationships between above-ground and below-ground biomass across various shrub types. Our results indicated that the median values of AGB, BGB, and R/S in Tibetan shrub were 1102.55, 874.91 g m-2, and 0.85, respectively. R/S showed significant trend with mean annual precipitation (MAP), while decreased with mean annual temperature (MAT). Reduced major axis analysis indicated that the slope of the log-log relationship between above- and belowground biomass revealed a significant difference from 1.0 over space, supporting the optimal hypothesis. Interestingly, the slopes of the allometric relationship between log AGB and log BGB differed significantly between alpine and desert shrub. Our findings supported the optimal theory of above- and belowground biomass partitioning in Tibetan shrub, while the isometric hypothesis for alpine shrub at the community level.

  17. Above- and Belowground Biomass Allocation in Shrub Biomes across the Northeast Tibetan Plateau

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Yuanhe; Yang, Lucun; Zhou, Guoying

    2016-01-01

    Biomass partitioning has been explored across various biomes. However, the strategies of allocation in plants still remain contentious. This study investigated allocation patterns of above- and belowground biomass at the community level, using biomass survey from the Tibetan Plateau. We explored above- and belowground biomass by conducting three consecutive sampling campaigns across shrub biomes on the northeast Tibetan Plateau during 2011–2013. We then documented the above-ground biomass (AGB), below-ground biomass (BGB) and root: shoot ratio (R/S) and the relationships between R/S and environment factors using data from 201 plots surveyed from 67 sites. We further examined relationships between above-ground and below-ground biomass across various shrub types. Our results indicated that the median values of AGB, BGB, and R/S in Tibetan shrub were 1102.55, 874.91 g m-2, and 0.85, respectively. R/S showed significant trend with mean annual precipitation (MAP), while decreased with mean annual temperature (MAT). Reduced major axis analysis indicated that the slope of the log-log relationship between above- and belowground biomass revealed a significant difference from 1.0 over space, supporting the optimal hypothesis. Interestingly, the slopes of the allometric relationship between log AGB and log BGB differed significantly between alpine and desert shrub. Our findings supported the optimal theory of above- and belowground biomass partitioning in Tibetan shrub, while the isometric hypothesis for alpine shrub at the community level. PMID:27119379

  18. The origin of low-mass white dwarfs

    SciTech Connect

    Rebassa-Mansergas, A.; Schreiber, M. R.; Gaensicke, B. T.; Girven, J.; Gomez-Moran, A. Nebot

    2010-11-23

    We present white dwarf mass distributions of a large sample of post common-envelope binaries and wide white dwarf main sequence binaries and demonstrate that these distributions are statistically independent. While the former contains a much larger fraction of low-mass white dwarfs, the latter is similar to single white dwarf mass distributions. Taking into account observational biases we also show that the majority of low-mass white dwarfs are formed in close binaries.

  19. Are white dwarfs born with a `KICK'?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Davis, Saul; Richer, H. B.; Coffey, J.; Anderson, J.; Brewer, J.; Fahlman, G. G.; Hansen, B. M.; Hurley, J.; Kalirai, J. S.; King, I. R.; Reitzel, D.; Rich, R. M.; Rich, M. R.; Shara, M. M.

    2006-12-01

    The unusually large kinetic energies possessed by some pulsars, as inferred from their observed velocities in excess of the escape speed of the Galaxy, imply that the violent explosions in which they are born impart some fraction of their energy into the motion of the pulsar. Does a similar, but less energetic process occur during the birth of a white dwarf? Two major Hubble Space Telescope imaging campaigns of the two nearest globular star clusters, NGC 6397 and Messier 4, yield the radial distribution of both white dwarfs and main-sequences. Because globular clusters are relaxed populations, the velocity dispersion, and hence radial distribution, for stars of a particular mass is directly dependent on that mass. To first approximation, all white dwarf s have a mass of 0.55 M⊙. If white dwarfs are not born with a kick, we expect white dwarf s of an age younger than a relaxation time to have a radial distribution similar to main-sequence stars of 0.8 M⊙, i.e. the mass of their progenitor. Conversely, if white dwarf s are born with a kick, the radial distribution of white dwarfs younger than the relaxation time should mimic that of main-sequence stars of lesser mass. By comparing the radial distributions of white dwarfs of various ages with those of main-sequence stars of various masses in these two globular clusters, we find that the radial distributions of young white dwarfs are most similar to that of main-sequence stars of 0.2 M⊙, implying a natal kick of >1.6 km/s.

  20. The Gobbling Dwarf that Exploded

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2007-07-01

    A unique set of observations, obtained with ESO's VLT, has allowed astronomers to find direct evidence for the material that surrounded a star before it exploded as a Type Ia supernova. This strongly supports the scenario in which the explosion occurred in a system where a white dwarf is fed by a red giant. ESO PR Photo 31a/07 ESO PR Photo 31a/07 Evolution of SN 2006X Spectrum Because Type Ia supernovae are extremely luminous and quite similar to one another, these exploding events have been used extensively as cosmological reference beacons to trace the expansion of the Universe. However, despite significant recent progress, the nature of the stars that explode and the physics that governs these powerful explosions have remained very poorly understood. In the most widely accepted models of Type Ia supernovae the pre-explosion white dwarf star orbits another star. Due to the close interaction and the strong attraction produced by the very compact object, the companion star continuously loses mass, 'feeding' the white dwarf. When the mass of the white dwarf exceeds a critical value, it explodes. The team of astronomers studied in great detail SN 2006X, a Type Ia supernova that exploded 70 million light-years away from us, in the splendid spiral Galaxy Messier 100 (see ESO 08/06). Their observations led them to discover the signatures of matter lost by the normal star, some of which is transferred to the white dwarf. The observations were made with the Ultraviolet and Visual Echelle Spectrograph (UVES), mounted at ESO's 8.2-m Very Large Telescope, on four different occasions, over a time span of four months. A fifth observation at a different time was secured with the Keck telescope in Hawaii. The astronomers also made use of radio data obtained with NRAO's Very Large Array as well as images extracted from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope archive. ESO PR Photo 31b/07 ESO PR Photo 31b/07 SN 2006X, before and after the Type Ia Supernova explosion "No Type Ia

  1. Survey of viability of indigenous grasses, forbs, and shrubs: techniques of initial acquisition and treatment for propagation in preparation for future land reclamation in the Fort Union Basin. Final report, June 1, 1975-June 30, 1982

    SciTech Connect

    Eddleman, L.E.

    1982-06-01

    Research begun in 1975 on the biology of indigenous grasses, forbs and shrubs of southeastern Montana clearly shows the complex nature of the systems by which these species reestablish themselves. The diversity found among the species undoubtedly contributes to the stability of the Great Plains vegetation. Some species were found to have very narrow requirements for establishment while others were very plastic. The strategies employed for reestablishment are closely tied to the species phenology, seed vigor and seedling vigor. It appears from this research that considerably less than 50 percent of the common indigenous species of southeastern Montana will easily and rapidly establish on the mine spoils. This research also shows that the probability of establishment success will be enhanced significantly by selection of those species which germinate a large percentage of their seed rapidly and which have seedlings that can maintain their growth through at least a short drought period. Those species were identified in this project. Selection for species that germinate at a broad range of temperatures including cool temperatures, at least down to 10/sup 0/C, will also improve chances of establishment. Finally, many species have been identified for which much more work is needed. Shrubs in particular were difficult to work with. Dormancy-breaking requirements are rather specialized and, therefore, may not be achieved regularly in the field. Other species have such low seed and seedling vigor that their use in reclamation plantings cannot be encouraged.

  2. Dwarf Galaxy Gives universe A Breath of Fresh Oxygen

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    2002-07-01

    Astronomers have discovered that a nearby dwarf galaxy is spewing oxygen and other "heavy" elements into intergalactic space. This observation from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory supports the idea that dwarf galaxies may be responsible for most of the heavy elements between the galaxies. Despite comprising only a very small fraction of the mass of the universe, so-called heavy elements - everything other than hydrogen and helium -- are essential for the formation of planets and can greatly influence astronomical phenomena, including the rate at which galaxies form. A team led by Crystal Martin of the University of California, Santa Barbara, observed the dwarf galaxy NGC 1569 using Chandra. As reported in an article to be published in The Astrophysical Journal, they found that huge quantities of oxygen and other heavy elements are escaping from the galaxy in bubbles of multimillion-degree gases that are thousands of light years in diameter "Dwarf galaxies are much smaller than ordinary galaxies like our Milky Way and much more common," said Martin. "Because of their small mass, they have relatively low gravity and matter can escape more easily from dwarfs than normal galaxies. This makes them very important in understanding how the universe was seeded with various elements." Scientists have speculated that heavy elements escaping from dwarf galaxies in the early universe could play a dominant role in enriching the intergalactic gas from which other galaxies form. Enriched gas cools more quickly, so the rate and manner of formation of new galaxies in the early universe would have been strongly affected by this process. NGC 1569 X-ray/Optical Composite NGC 1569 Composite Optical/X-ray image "With Chandra it was possible to test these ideas," said Henry Kobulnicky of the University of Wisconsin, Madison, a member of the research team. "We could trace the distribution of oxygen and other elements in the galaxy and determine how much of this matter is escaping from the

  3. Gaia limits for brown dwarf studies.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sarro, L. M.; Barrado, D.; Carrión, C.; Caballero, J. A.

    In this work we present a study of the expected properties of the Gaia sample of ultracool dwarfs (UCDs). This is defined preliminary (at a stage where we do not have real Gaia data yet) by analysing the detectability by Gaia of known UCDs in the Dwarf Archive. We complement the observations listed in the Dwarf Archive (J-, H-, and K- band magnitudes) with SDSS magnitudes and compare them with the BT-Settl model library in order to assess detectability. We also discuss the fraction of UCDs that will have accompanying RVS spectra in the Calcium triplet wavelength region.

  4. Principal Component Analysis of Brown Dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cleary, Colleen; Rodriguez, David

    2017-01-01

    Principal component analysis is a technique for reducing variables and emphasizing patterns in a data set. In this study, the data set consisted of the attributes of 174 brown dwarfs. The PCA was performed on several photometric measurements in near-infrared wavelengths and colors in order to determine if these variables showed a correlation with the physical parameters. This research resulted in two separate models that predict luminosity and temperature. The application of principal component analysis on the near-infrared photometric measurements and colors of brown dwarfs, along with models, provides alternate methods for predicting the luminosity and temperature of brown dwarfs using only photometric measurements.

  5. Dwarf spheroidal galaxies: Keystones of galaxy evolution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gallagher, John S., III; Wyse, Rosemary F. G.

    1994-01-01

    Dwarf spheroidal galaxies are the most insignificant extragalactic stellar systems in terms of their visibility, but potentially very significant in terms of their role in the formation and evolution of much more luminous galaxies. We discuss the present observational data and their implications for theories of the formation and evolution of both dwarf and giant galaxies. The putative dark-matter content of these low-surface-brightness systems is of particular interest, as is their chemical evolution. Surveys for new dwarf spheroidals hidden behind the stars of our Galaxy and those which are not bound to giant galaxies may give new clues as to the origins of this unique class of galaxy.

  6. Differences in seed rain composition in small and large fragments in the northeast Brazilian Atlantic Forest.

    PubMed

    Knörr, U C; Gottsberger, G

    2012-09-01

    Tropical forests are seriously threatened by fragmentation and habitat loss. The impact of fragment size and forest configuration on the composition of seed rain is insufficiently studied. For the present study, seed rain composition of small and large forest fragments (8-388 ha) was assessed in order to identify variations in seed abundance, species richness, seed size and dispersal mode. Seed rain was documented during a 1-year period in three large and four small Atlantic Forest fragments that are isolated by a sugarcane matrix. Total seed rain included 20,518 seeds of 149 species of trees, shrubs, palms, lianas and herbs. Most species and seeds were animal-dispersed. A significant difference in the proportion of seeds and species within different categories of seed size was found between small and large fragments. Small fragments received significantly more very small-sized seeds (<0.3 cm) and less large-seeded species (>1.5 cm) that were generally very rare, with only one species in small and eight in large fragments. We found a negative correlation between the inflow of small-sized seeds and the percentage of forest cover. Species richness was lower in small than in large fragments, but the difference was not very pronounced. Given our results, we propose changing plant species pools through logging, tree mortality and a high inflow of pioneer species and lianas, especially in small forest fragments and areas with low forest cover. Connecting forest fragments through corridors and reforestation with local large-seeded tree species may facilitate the maintenance of species diversity.

  7. New mutualism for old: indirect disruption and direct facilitation of seed dispersal following Argentine ant invasion.

    PubMed

    Rowles, Alexei D; O'Dowd, Dennis J

    2009-01-01

    The indirect effects of biological invasions on native communities are poorly understood. Disruption of native ant communities following invasion by the Argentine ant (Linepithema humile) is widely reported to lead indirectly to the near complete collapse of seed dispersal services. In coastal scrub in southeastern Australia, we examined seed dispersal and handling of two native and two invasive alien plant species at Argentine ant-invaded or -uninvaded sites. The Argentine ant virtually eliminates the native keystone disperser Rhytidoponera victoriae, but seed dispersal did not collapse following invasion. Indeed, Argentine ants directly accounted for 92% of all ant-seed interactions and sustained overall seed dispersal rates. Nevertheless, dispersal quantity and quality among seed species differed between Argentine ant-invaded and -uninvaded sites. Argentine ants removed significantly fewer native Acacia retinodes seeds, but significantly more small seeds of invasive Polygala myrtifolia than did native ants at uninvaded sites. They also handled significantly more large seeds of A. sophorae, but rarely moved them >5 cm, instead recruiting en masse, consuming elaiosomes piecemeal and burying seeds in situ. In contrast, Argentine ants transported and interred P. myrtifolia seeds in their shallow nests. Experiments with artificial diaspores that varied in diaspore and elaiosome masses, but kept seed morphology and elaiosome quality constant, showed that removal by L. humile depended on the interaction of seed size and percentage elaiosome reward. Small diaspores were frequently taken, independent of high or low elaiosome reward, but large artificial diaspores with high reward instead elicited mass recruitment by Argentine ants and were rarely moved. Thus, Argentine ants appear to favour some diaspore types and reject others based largely on diaspore size and percentage reward. Such variability in response indirectly reduces native seed dispersal and can directly

  8. WHITE DWARF/M DWARF BINARIES AS SINGLE DEGENERATE PROGENITORS OF TYPE Ia SUPERNOVAE

    SciTech Connect

    Wheeler, J. Craig

    2012-10-20

    Limits on the companions of white dwarfs in the single-degenerate scenario for the origin of Type Ia supernovae (SNe Ia) have gotten increasingly tight, yet igniting a nearly Chandrasekhar mass C/O white dwarf from a condition of near hydrostatic equilibrium provides compelling agreement with observed spectral evolution. The only type of non-degenerate stars that survive the tight limits, M{sub V} {approx}> 8.4 on the SN Ia in SNR 0509-67.5 and M{sub V} {approx}> 9.5 in the remnant of SN 1572, are M dwarfs. While M dwarfs are observed in cataclysmic variables, they have special properties that have not been considered in most work on the progenitors of SNe Ia: they have small but finite magnetic fields and they flare frequently. These properties are explored in the context of SN Ia progenitors. White dwarf/M dwarf pairs may be sufficiently plentiful to provide, in principle, an adequate rate of explosions even with slow orbital evolution due to magnetic braking or gravitational radiation. Even modest magnetic fields on the white dwarf and M dwarf will yield adequate torques to lock the two stars together, resulting in a slowly rotating white dwarf, with the magnetic poles pointing at one another in the orbital plane. The mass loss will be channeled by a 'magnetic bottle' connecting the two stars, landing on a concentrated polar area on the white dwarf. This enhances the effective rate of accretion compared to spherical accretion. Luminosity from accretion and hydrogen burning on the surface of the white dwarf may induce self-excited mass transfer. The combined effects of self-excited mass loss, polar accretion, and magnetic inhibition of mixing of accretion layers give possible means to beat the 'nova limit' and grow the white dwarf to the Chandrasekhar mass even at rather moderate mass accretion rates.

  9. Growing super-dwarf wheat in Svet on Mir.

    PubMed

    Salisbury, F B; Bingham, G E; Campbell, W F; Carman, J G; Bubenheim, D L; Yendler, B; Jahns, G

    1995-01-01

    In cooperation with Russian colleagues, we will carry out three experiments with a super-dwarf cultivar of wheat in the plant growth chamber Svet on the Russian Space Station Mir: an early test of the root module and other instruments (July-August, 1995), a seed-to-seed experiment (1996), and a third planting that will be harvested after about 35 days, frozen, and returned to Earth for chemical analysis (1996). Plants will be photographed, sampled,and chemically fixed at intervals during the first two plantings. Instrumentation has been constructed to measure CO2, water vapor, air temperatures, infrared leaf temperatures, oxygen, pressure, irradiance levels, and moisture in the root module substrate (Balkanine). The primary objective of this equipment is to allow controllers to eliminate plant environmental stresses, leading to vigorous plant growth in microgravity. We are testing sampling and analysis techniques and growing plants in ground versions of Svet in Moscow and in Svet mockups in Utah: 12 chambers in two temperature-controlled rooms, with two compartments in each chamber (two temperatures, four CO2 concentrations, and three photoperiods in a current experiment).

  10. Post-fire Wind Erosion in a Semiarid Shrub Steppe

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Glenn, N.; Sankey, J.; Germino, M.

    2007-12-01

    The objective of this project is to determine and describe the effects of fire on the potential for soil erosion by wind in a semiarid shrub steppe in southeastern Idaho. We apply a previously developed method for determining the threshold wind speed (critical threshold) required to initiate saltation of soil particles at several sampling locations within wildfires that burned in summers 2006 and 2007. Sampling locations have data collection stations with anemometers, a piezoelectric sensor mounted at 5 cm above the ground surface that records impacts from saltating soil particles, temperature and relative humidity sensors mounted at ground level, soil moisture sensors, and soil erosion bridges. Analysis is intended to identify key controlling variables of post- wildfire eolian transport with the intention of continued monitoring over longer time periods with the incorporation of LiDAR data for surface characterization. Initial field results indicate substantial differences in wind erosion potential between burned and unburned sites. Saltation activity is greater and more frequently detected at the burned sites in comparison to the unburned sites. Comparison between the burned sites indicates periods of similar saltation activity and threshold wind speeds. Comparison also shows periods when saltation is detected at one burned site but not the other, and periods when greater wind speeds are required at one burned site to initiate saltation. This suggests that within-burn variability exists in wind erosion potential and requires more complete characterization to accurately model and predict post-fire eolian transport. In parallel to the field-based research, we are developing remote sensing techniques to characterize the soil surface and vegetation communities at a scale appropriate for wind erosion modeling. These techniques include hyperspectral and LiDAR analysis of the soil surface and structural information of the vegetation. Soil and vegetation surface

  11. Magnetic fields in Local Group dwarf irregulars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chyży, K. T.; Weżgowiec, M.; Beck, R.; Bomans, D. J.

    2011-05-01

    Aims: We wish to clarify whether strong magnetic fields can be effectively generated in typically low-mass dwarf galaxies and to assess the role of dwarf galaxies in the magnetization of the Universe. Methods: We performed a search for radio emission and magnetic fields in an unbiased sample of 12 Local Group (LG) irregular and dwarf irregular galaxies with the 100-m Effelsberg telescope at 2.64 GHz. Three galaxies were detected. A higher frequency (4.85 GHz) was used to search for polarized emission in five dwarfs that are the most luminous ones in the infrared domain, of which three were detected. Results: Magnetic fields in LG dwarfs are weak, with a mean value of the total field strength of <4.2 ± 1.8 μG, three times lower than in the normal spirals. The strongest field among all LG dwarfs of 10 μG (at 2.64 GHz) is observed in the starburst dwarf IC 10. The production of total magnetic fields in dwarf systems appears to be regulated mainly by the star-formation surface density (with the power-law exponent of 0.30 ± 0.04) or by the gas surface density (with the exponent 0.47 ± 0.09). In addition, we find systematically stronger fields in objects of higher global star-formation rate. The dwarf galaxies follow a similar far-infrared relationship (with a slope of 0.91 ± 0.08) to that determined for high surface brightness spiral galaxies. The magnetic field strength in dwarf galaxies does not correlate with their maximum rotational velocity, indicating that a small-scale rather than a large-scale dynamo process is responsible for producting magnetic fields in dwarfs. If magnetization of the Universe by galactic outflows is coeval with its metal enrichment, we show that more massive objects (such as Lyman break galaxies) can efficiently magnetize the intergalactic medium with a magnetic field strength of about 0.8 nG out to a distance of 160-530 kpc at redshifts 5-3, respectively. Magnetic fields that are several times weaker and shorter magnetization

  12. FORMATION OF ULTRA-COMPACT BLUE DWARF GALAXIES AND THEIR EVOLUTION INTO NUCLEATED DWARFS

    SciTech Connect

    Bekki, Kenji

    2015-10-10

    We propose that there is an evolutionary link between ultra-compact blue dwarf galaxies (UCBDs) with active star formation and nucleated dwarfs based on the results of numerical simulations of dwarf–dwarf merging. We consider the observational fact that low-mass dwarfs can be very gas-rich, and thereby investigate the dynamical and chemical evolution of very gas-rich, dissipative dwarf–dwarf mergers. We find that the remnants of dwarf–dwarf mergers can be dominated by new stellar populations formed from the triggered starbursts and consequently can have blue colors and higher metallicities (Z ∼ [0.2–1]Z{sub ⊙}). We also find that the remnants of these mergers can have rather high mass densities (10{sup 4} M{sub ⊙} pc{sup −3}) within the central 10 pc and small half-light radii (40−100 pc). The radial stellar structures of some merger remnants are similar to those of nucleated dwarfs. Star formation can continue in nuclear gas disks (R < 100 pc) surrounding stellar galactic nuclei (SGNs) so that the SGNs can finally have multiple stellar populations with different ages and metallicities. These very compact blue remnants can be identified as UCBDs soon after merging and as nucleated dwarfs after the young stars fade. We discuss these results in the context of the origins of metal-rich ultra-compact dwarfs and SGNs.

  13. Population-level consequences of herbivory, changing climate, and source-sink dynamics on a long-lived invasive shrub.

    PubMed

    van Klinken, R D; Pichancourt, J B

    2015-12-01

    Long-lived plant species are highly valued environmentally, economically, and socially, but can also cause substantial harm as invaders. Realistic demographic predictions can guide management decisions, and are particularly valuable for long-lived species where population response times can be long. Long-lived species are also challenging, given population dynamics can be affected by factors as diverse as herbivory, climate, and dispersal. We developed a matrix model to evaluate the effects of herbivory by a leaf-feeding biological control agent released in Australia against a long-lived invasive shrub (mesquite, Leguminoseae: Prosopis spp.). The stage-structured, density-dependent model used an annual time step and 10 climatically diverse years of field data. Mesquite population demography is sensitive to source-sink dynamics as most seeds are consumed and redistributed spatially by livestock. In addition, individual mesquite plants, because they are long lived, experience natural climate variation that cycles over decadal scales, as well as anthropogenic climate change. The model therefore explicitly considered the effects of both net dispersal and climate variation. Herbivory strongly regulated mesquite populations through reduced growth and fertility, but additional mortality of older plants will be required to reach management goals within a reasonable time frame. Growth and survival of seeds and seedlings were correlated with daily soil moisture. As a result, population dynamics were sensitive to rainfall scenario, but population response times were typically slow (20-800 years to reach equilibrium or extinction) due to adult longevity. Equilibrium population densities were expected to remain 5% higher, and be more dynamic, if historical multi-decadal climate patterns persist, the effect being dampened by herbivory suppressing seed production irrespective of preceding rainfall. Dense infestations were unlikely to form under a drier climate, and required net

  14. Magnetars and white dwarf pulsars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lobato, Ronaldo V.; Malheiro, Manuel; Coelho, Jaziel G.

    2016-07-01

    The anomalous X-ray pulsars (AXPs) and soft gamma-ray repeaters (SGRs) are a class of pulsars understood as neutron stars (NSs) with super strong surface magnetic fields, namely B ≳ 1014G, and for that reason are known as magnetars. However, in the last years, some SGRs/AXPs with low surface magnetic fields B ˜ (1012-1013)G have been detected, challenging the magnetar description. Moreover, some fast and very magnetic white dwarfs (WDs) have also been observed, and at least one showed X-ray energy emission as an ordinary pulsar. Following this fact, an alternative model based on WDs pulsars has been proposed to explain this special class of pulsars. In this model, AXPs and SGRs as dense and magnetized WDs can have surface magnetic field B ˜ 107-1010 G and rotate very fast with frequencies Ω ˜ 1rad/s, consistent with the observed rotation periods P ˜ (2-12)s.

  15. Response of dominant grass and shrub species to water manipulation: an ecophysiological basis for shrub invasion in a Chihuahuan Desert grassland

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Increases in woody vegetation and declines in grasses in arid and semi-arid ecosystems have occurred globally since the 1800s, but the mechanisms driving this major land-cover change remain uncertain and controversial. Working in a shrub-encroached grassland in the northern Chihuahuan Desert where ...

  16. White Dwarfs, Neutron Stars and Black Holes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Szekeres, P.

    1977-01-01

    The three possible fates of burned-out stars: white dwarfs, neutron stars and black holes, are described in elementary terms. Characteristics of these celestial bodies, as provided by Einstein's work, are described. (CP)

  17. Building Magnetic Fields in White Dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2017-03-01

    White dwarfs, the compact remnants left over at the end of low- and medium-mass stars lifetimes, are often found to have magnetic fields with strengths ranging from thousands to billions of times that of Earth. But how do these fields form?MultiplePossibilitiesAround 1020% of white dwarfs have been observed to have measurable magnetic fields with a wide range of strengths. There are several theories as to how these fields might be generated:The fields are fossil.The original weak magnetic fields of the progenitor stars were amplified as the stars cores evolved into white dwarfs.The fields are caused by binary interactions.White dwarfs that formed in the merger of a binary pair might have had a magnetic field amplified as a result of a dynamo that was generated during the merger.The fields were produced by some other internal physical mechanism during the cooling of the white dwarf itself.In a recent publication, a team of authors led by Jordi Isern (Institute of Space Sciences, CSIC, and Institute for Space Studies of Catalonia, Spain) explored this third possibility.Dynamos from CrystallizationThe inner and outer boundaries of the convective mantle of carbon/oxygen white dwarfs of two different masses (top vs. bottom panel) as a function of luminosity. As the white dwarf cools (toward the right), the mantle grows thinner due to the crystallization and settling of material. [Isern et al. 2017]As white dwarfs have no nuclear fusion at their centers, they simply radiate heat and gradually cool over time. The structure of the white dwarf undergoes an interesting change as it cools, however: though the object begins as a fluid composed primarily of an ionized mixture of carbon and oxygen (and a few minor species like nickel and iron), it gradually crystallizes as its temperature drops.The crystallized phase of the white dwarf is oxygen-rich which is denser than the liquid, so the crystallized material sinks to the center of the dwarf as it solidifies. As a result, the

  18. Merging white dwarfs and thermonuclear supernovae.

    PubMed

    van Kerkwijk, M H

    2013-06-13

    Thermonuclear supernovae result when interaction with a companion reignites nuclear fusion in a carbon-oxygen white dwarf, causing a thermonuclear runaway, a catastrophic gain in pressure and the disintegration of the whole white dwarf. It is usually thought that fusion is reignited in near-pycnonuclear conditions when the white dwarf approaches the Chandrasekhar mass. I briefly describe two long-standing problems faced by this scenario, and the suggestion that these supernovae instead result from mergers of carbon-oxygen white dwarfs, including those that produce sub-Chandrasekhar-mass remnants. I then turn to possible observational tests, in particular, those that test the absence or presence of electron captures during the burning.

  19. Tidal Effects in Inspiraling Double White Dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Willems, B.; Kalogera, Vicky; Vecchio, A.; Ivanova, N.; Deloye, C.; Hansen, B.

    2006-12-01

    Despite the overwhelming abundance of double white dwarfs in the LISA gravitational wave frequency band, modeling of their waveforms has remained limited to the point-mass approximation in which gravitational radiation is the only source of systemic orbital angular momentum loss. As a significant fraction of these systems spirals in to periods as short as 5-10 minutes, tidal effects can, however, play an important role in modifying the gravitational wave frequency evolution. The strength of the tidal effects depends strongly on the energy dissipation mechanism damping the tides, which, for white dwarfs, is highly uncertain. In this poster, we present the first results of a systematic study of tidal dissipation in white dwarfs, and the impact of tides on the gravitational wave signal of close double white dwarfs.

  20. Transit probabilities for debris around white dwarfs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lewis, John Arban; Johnson, John A.

    2017-01-01

    The discovery of WD 1145+017 (Vanderburg et al. 2015), a metal-polluted white dwarf with an infrared-excess and transits confirmed the long held theory that at least some metal-polluted white dwarfs are actively accreting material from crushed up planetesimals. A statistical understanding of WD 1145-like systems would inform us on the various pathways for metal-pollution and the end states of planetary systems around medium- to high-mass stars. However, we only have one example and there are presently no published studies of transit detection/discovery probabilities for white dwarfs within this interesting regime. We present a preliminary look at the transit probabilities for metal-polluted white dwarfs and their projected space density in the Solar Neighborhood, which will inform future searches for analogs to WD 1145+017.

  1. Pulsating White Dwarf Stars and Precision Asteroseismology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Winget, D. E.; Kepler, S. O.

    2008-09-01

    Galactic history is written in the white dwarf stars. Their surface properties hint at interiors composed of matter under extreme conditions. In the forty years since their discovery, pulsating white dwarf stars have moved from side-show curiosities to center stage as important tools for unraveling the deep mysteries of the Universe. Innovative observational techniques and theoretical modeling tools have breathed life into precision asteroseismology. We are just learning to use this powerful tool, confronting theoretical models with observed frequencies and their time rate-of-change. With this tool, we calibrate white dwarf cosmochronology; we explore equations of state; we measure stellar masses, rotation rates, and nuclear reaction rates; we explore the physics of interior crystallization; we study the structure of the progenitors of Type Ia supernovae, and we test models of dark matter. The white dwarf pulsations are at once the heartbeat of galactic history and a window into unexplored and exotic physics.

  2. L' AND M' Photometry Of Ultracool Dwarfs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marley, M. S.; Tsvetanov, Z. I.; Vrba, F. J.; Henden, A. A.; Luginbuhl, C. B.

    2004-01-01

    We have compiled L' (3.4-4.1 microns) and M' (4.6- 4.8 microns) photometry of 63 single and binary M, L, and T dwarfs obtained at the United Kingdom Infrared Telescope using the Mauna Kea Observatory filter set. This compilation includes new L' measurements of eight L dwarfs and 13 T dwarfs and new M' measurements of seven L dwarfs, five T dwarfs, and the M1 dwarf Gl 229A. These new data increase by factors of 0. 6 and 1.6, respectively, the numbers of ultracool dwarfs T (sub eff) dwarfs whose flux-calibrated JHK spectra, L' photometry, and trigonometric parallaxes are available, and we estimate these quantities for nine other dwarfs whose parallaxes and flux-calibrated spectra have been obtained. BC(SUB K) is a well-behaved function of near-infrared spectral type with a dispersion of approx. 0.1 mag for types M6-T5 it is significantly more scattered for types T5-T9. T (sub eff) declines steeply and monotonically for types M6-L7 and T4-T9, but it is nearly constant at approx. 1450 K for types L7-T4 with assumed ages of approx. 3 Gyr. This constant T(sub eff) is evidenced by nearly unchanging values of L'-M' between types L6 and T3. It also supports recent models that attribute the changing near-infrared luminosities and spectral features across the L-T transition to the rapid migration, disruption, and/or thinning of condensate clouds over a narrow range of T(sub eff). The L' and M' luminosities of early-T dwarfs do not exhibit the pronounced humps or inflections previously noted in l through K bands, but insufficient data exist for types L6-T5 to assert that M(Sub L') and M(sub M') are strictly monotonic within this range of typew. We compare the observed K, L', and M' luminosities of L and T dwarfs in our sample with those predicted by precipitation-cloud-free models for varying surface gravities and sedimentation efficiencies.

  3. Employing native shrubs to improve agricultural potential of arid lands: Drawing on plants to draw water (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dragila, M. I.; Kizito, F.; Dick, R.

    2009-12-01

    Even though soil moisture poses limits on landscape dynamics, plant communities within the landscape can also regulate the spatial distribution of moisture, thus creating a biofeedback system that advances the system towards a specific landscape order. This behavior is evident in arid climates where specific parameters, such as soil moisture, are close to sustainability limits and result in a distinct spatial distribution of plant communities. Understanding plant-soil water relationships can lead to management tools to improve landscape function. Plant-soil interactions that influence soil moisture include, local changes in soil texture when plants trap airborne soil particles, increases in organic matter content below their foliage, and root distribution. We specifically focus on a process commonly referred to as hydraulic redistribution wherein plant roots draw moisture vertically to the near surface, raising the potential for seed germination and maintenance through short drought periods. Two fieldwork sites in Senegal were used to investigate the role of native shrubs in controlling soil moisture movement, and in particular, using these native plants to enhance agricultural potential.

  4. A wave model for dwarf novae

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sparks, W. M.; Kutter, G. S.

    1980-01-01

    The rapid coherent oscillation during a dwarf nova outburst is attributed to an accretion-driven wave going around the white dwarf component of the binary system. The increase and decrease in the period of this oscillation is due to the change in the velocity of the wave as it is first being driven and then damped. Qualitatively, a large number of observations can be explained with such a model. The beginnings of a mathematical representation of this model are developed.

  5. Formation of Brown Dwarfs LTSA 2001

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oliversen, Ronald J. (Technical Monitor)

    2004-01-01

    The goals of the work funded by this grant are: 1) The measurement of the mass function and minimum mass of free-floating brown dwarfs down to the mass of Jupiter. 2) The measurement of the frequency of wide brown dwarf and planetary companions down to the mass of Jupiter as function of primary mass (0.02-2 Msun), age (1-10 Myr), and environment (clusters vs. dispersed regions).

  6. ANS ultraviolet observations of dwarf Cepheids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sturch, C. R.; Wu, C.-C.

    1983-03-01

    Ultraviolet observations of three dwarf Cepheids (VZ Cnc, SX Phe, and AI Vel) are presented. The UV light curves are consistent with those in the visual region. When compared to standard stars, all three dwarf Cepheids exhibit flux deficiencies at the shortest observed wavelengths. The most extreme deficiencies appear for SX Phe; these may be related to the other properties previously noted for this star, including low metallicity, high space motion, and low luminosity.

  7. [Effects of litter coverage and watering frequency on seed germination and seedling survival of Castanopsis fissa].

    PubMed

    Wang, Jun; Wang, Zhuo-Han; Yang, Long; Ren, Hai

    2008-10-01

    Castanopsis fissa is an important pioneer species commonly used in the restoration of degraded subtropical grassland in southern China. The study on the effects of litter coverage and watering frequency on the seed germination and seedling survival of C. fissa showed that the effects of litter coverage depended on soil moisture condition. When the watering frequency was 1 time per day, litter covering could restrain seed germination and increase seedling mortality; while watering 2 or 3 times per day, the covering would ameliorate soil moisture condition, and benefit seed germination and seedling establishment. The biomass of C. fissa seedlings was enhanced significantly by litter covering. It was suggested that keeping a litter layer on soil surface could benefit the seed germination and seedling survival of C. fissa to restore subtropical shrub land.

  8. The potential key seed-dispersing role of the arboreal marsupial Dromiciops gliroides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amico, Guillermo C.; Rodríguez-Cabal, Mariano A.; Aizen, Marcelo A.

    2009-01-01

    Marsupial seed dispersal is a rare phenomenon, although it may be ecologically significant in southern South America. The marsupial Dromiciops gliroides is endemic to the northern part of the temperate forest of South America. Here we describe the food habits and examine the potential role of D. gliroides as a seed disperser. We evaluated the diet of this marsupial in its natural habitat and in captivity. Dromiciops gliroides is omnivorous showing high consumption of a diversity of fruits. In captivity, D. gliroides consumed fruits from 80% of 22 native plant species we examined. Experiments conducted with fruits from two common understory shrubs show that seed passage through the digestive tract of D. gliroides enhances germination. Our results suggest that this species may have an important role as a seed disperser in the temperate forest of South America, which might offset a scarcity of frugivorous bird species.

  9. The role of vegetation-microclimate feedback in promoting shrub encroachment in the northern Chihuahuan desert.

    PubMed

    He, Yufei; D'Odorico, Paolo; De Wekker, Stephan F J

    2015-06-01

    Many arid and semi-arid landscapes around the world are affected by a shift from grassland to shrubland vegetation, presumably induced by climate warming, increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations, and/or changing land use. This major change in vegetation cover is likely sustained by positive feedbacks with the physical environment. Recent research has focused on a feedback with microclimate, whereby cold intolerant shrubs increase the minimum nocturnal temperatures in their surroundings. Despite the rich literature on the impact of land cover change on local climate conditions, changes in microclimate resulting from shrub expansion into desert grasslands have remained poorly investigated. It is unclear to what extent such a feedback can affect the maximum extent of shrub expansion and the configuration of a stable encroachment front. Here, we focus on the case of the northern Chihuahuan desert, where creosotebush (Larrea tridentata) has been replacing grasslands over the past 100-150 years. We use a process-based coupled atmosphere-vegetation model to investigate the role of this feedback in sustaining shrub encroachment in the region. Simulations indicate that the feedback allows juvenile shrubs to establish in the grassland during average years and, once established, reduce their vulnerability to freeze-induced mortality by creating a warmer microclimate. Such a feedback is crucial in extreme cold winters as it may reduce shrub mortality. We identify the existence of a critical zone in the surroundings of the encroachment front, in which vegetation dynamics are bistable: in this zone, vegetation can be stable both as grassland and as shrubland. The existence of these alternative stable states explains why in most cases the shift from grass to shrub cover is found to be abrupt and often difficult to revert.

  10. Patterns of shrub expansion in Alaskan arctic river corridors suggest phase transition.

    PubMed

    Naito, Adam T; Cairns, David M

    2015-01-01

    Recent increases in deciduous shrub cover are a primary focus of terrestrial Arctic research. This study examined the historic spatial patterns of shrub expansion on the North Slope of Alaska to determine the potential for a phase transition from tundra to shrubland. We examined the historic variability of landscape-scale tall shrub expansion patterns on nine sites within river valleys in the Brooks Range and North Slope uplands (BRNS) between the 1950s and circa 2010 by calculating percent cover (PCTCOV), patch density (PADENS), patch size variability (CVSIZE), mean nearest neighbor distance (MEDIST) and the multi-scale information fractal dimension (d I ) to assess spatial homogeneity for shrub cover. We also devised conceptual models for trends in these metrics before, during, and after a phase transition, and compared these to our results. By developing a regression equation between PCTCOV and d I and using universal critical d I values, we derived the PCTCOV required for a phase transition to occur. All nine sites exhibited increases in PCTCOV. Five of the nine sites exhibited an increase in PADENS, seven exhibited an increase in CVSIZE, and five exhibited a decrease in MEDIST. The d I values for each site exceeded the requirements necessary for a phase transition. Although fine-scale heterogeneity is still present, landscape-scale patterns suggest our study areas are either currently in a state of phase transition from tundra to shrubland or are progressing towards spatial homogeneity for shrubland. Our results indicate that the shrub tundra in the river valleys of the north slope of Alaska has reached a tipping point. If climate trends observed in recent decades continue, the shrub tundra will continue towards homogeneity with regard to the cover of tall shrubs.

  11. Patterns of shrub expansion in Alaskan arctic river corridors suggest phase transition

    PubMed Central

    Naito, Adam T; Cairns, David M

    2015-01-01

    Recent increases in deciduous shrub cover are a primary focus of terrestrial Arctic research. This study examined the historic spatial patterns of shrub expansion on the North Slope of Alaska to determine the potential for a phase transition from tundra to shrubland. We examined the historic variability of landscape-scale tall shrub expansion patterns on nine sites within river valleys in the Brooks Range and North Slope uplands (BRNS) between the 1950s and circa 2010 by calculating percent cover (PCTCOV), patch density (PADENS), patch size variability (CVSIZE), mean nearest neighbor distance (MEDIST) and the multi-scale information fractal dimension (dI) to assess spatial homogeneity for shrub cover. We also devised conceptual models for trends in these metrics before, during, and after a phase transition, and compared these to our results. By developing a regression equation between PCTCOV and dI and using universal critical dI values, we derived the PCTCOV required for a phase transition to occur. All nine sites exhibited increases in PCTCOV. Five of the nine sites exhibited an increase in PADENS, seven exhibited an increase in CVSIZE, and five exhibited a decrease in MEDIST. The dI values for each site exceeded the requirements necessary for a phase transition. Although fine-scale heterogeneity is still present, landscape-scale patterns suggest our study areas are either currently in a state of phase transition from tundra to shrubland or are progressing towards spatial homogeneity for shrubland. Our results indicate that the shrub tundra in the river valleys of the north slope of Alaska has reached a tipping point. If climate trends observed in recent decades continue, the shrub tundra will continue towards homogeneity with regard to the cover of tall shrubs. PMID:25628866

  12. Morphology and Structures of Nearby Dwarf Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seo, Mira; Ann, HongBae

    2015-08-01

    We performed an analysis of the structure of nearby dwarf galaxies based on a 2-dimensional decomposition of galaxy images using GALFIT. The present sample consists of ~1,100 dwarf galaxies with redshift less than z = 0.01, which is is derived from the morphology catalog of the Visually classified galaxies in the local universe (Ann, Seo, and Ha 2015). In this catalog, dwarf galaxies are divided into 5 subtypes: dS0, dE, dSph, dEbc, dEblue with distinction of the presence of nucleation in dE, dSph, and dS0. We found that dSph and dEblue galaxies are fainter than other subtypes of dwarf galaxies. In most cases, single component, represented by the Sersic profile with n=1~1.5, well describes the luminosity distribution of dwarf galaxies in the present sample. However, a significant fraction of dS0, dEbc, and dEbue galaxies show sub-structures such as spiral arms and rings. We will discuss the morphology dependent evolutionary history of the local dwarf galaxies.

  13. ON THE EVOLUTION OF MAGNETIC WHITE DWARFS

    SciTech Connect

    Tremblay, P.-E.; Fontaine, G.; Brassard, P.; Freytag, B.; Steiner, O.; Ludwig, H.-G.; Steffen, M.; Wedemeyer, S.

    2015-10-10

    We present the first radiation magnetohydrodynamic simulations of the atmosphere of white dwarf stars. We demonstrate that convective energy transfer is seriously impeded by magnetic fields when the plasma-β parameter, the thermal-to-magnetic-pressure ratio, becomes smaller than unity. The critical field strength that inhibits convection in the photosphere of white dwarfs is in the range B = 1–50 kG, which is much smaller than the typical 1–1000 MG field strengths observed in magnetic white dwarfs, implying that these objects have radiative atmospheres. We have employed evolutionary models to study the cooling process of high-field magnetic white dwarfs, where convection is entirely suppressed during the full evolution (B ≳ 10 MG). We find that the inhibition of convection has no effect on cooling rates until the effective temperature (T{sub eff}) reaches a value of around 5500 K. In this regime, the standard convective sequences start to deviate from the ones without convection due to the convective coupling between the outer layers and the degenerate reservoir of thermal energy. Since no magnetic white dwarfs are currently known at the low temperatures where this coupling significantly changes the evolution, the effects of magnetism on cooling rates are not expected to be observed. This result contrasts with a recent suggestion that magnetic white dwarfs with T{sub eff} ≲ 10,000 K cool significantly slower than non-magnetic degenerates.

  14. MICROLENSING BINARIES WITH CANDIDATE BROWN DWARF COMPANIONS

    SciTech Connect

    Shin, I.-G.; Han, C.; Gould, A.; Skowron, J.; Udalski, A.; Szymanski, M. K.; Kubiak, M.; Soszynski, I.; Pietrzynski, G.; Poleski, R.; Ulaczyk, K.; Pietrukowicz, P.; Kozlowski, S.; Wyrzykowski, L.; Sumi, T.; Dominik, M.; Beaulieu, J.-P.; Tsapras, Y.; Bozza, V.; Abe, F.; Collaboration: OGLE Collaboration; MOA Collaboration; muFUN Collaboration; and others

    2012-12-01

    Brown dwarfs are important objects because they may provide a missing link between stars and planets, two populations that have dramatically different formation histories. In this paper, we present the candidate binaries with brown dwarf companions that are found by analyzing binary microlensing events discovered during the 2004-2011 observation seasons. Based on the low mass ratio criterion of q < 0.2, we found seven candidate events: OGLE-2004-BLG-035, OGLE-2004-BLG-039, OGLE-2007-BLG-006, OGLE-2007-BLG-399/MOA-2007-BLG-334, MOA-2011-BLG-104/OGLE-2011-BLG-0172, MOA-2011-BLG-149, and MOA-201-BLG-278/OGLE-2011-BLG-012N. Among them, we are able to confirm that the companions of the lenses of MOA-2011-BLG-104/OGLE-2011-BLG-0172 and MOA-2011-BLG-149 are brown dwarfs by determining the mass of the lens based on the simultaneous measurement of the Einstein radius and the lens parallax. The measured masses of the brown dwarf companions are 0.02 {+-} 0.01 M {sub Sun} and 0.019 {+-} 0.002 M {sub Sun} for MOA-2011-BLG-104/OGLE-2011-BLG-0172 and MOA-2011-BLG-149, respectively, and both companions are orbiting low-mass M dwarf host stars. More microlensing brown dwarfs are expected to be detected as the number of lensing events with well-covered light curves increases with new-generation searches.

  15. The Hunt for Dwarf Galaxies' Ancestors

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2016-01-01

    Dwarf galaxies are typically very faint, and are therefore hard to find. Given that, what are our chances of finding their distant ancestors, located billions of light-years away? A recent study aims to find out.Ancient CounterpartsDwarf galaxies are a hot topic right now, especially as we discover more and more of them nearby. Besides being great places to investigate a variety of astrophysical processes, local group dwarf galaxies are also representative of the most common type of galaxy in the universe. For many of these dwarf galaxies, their low masses and typically old stellar populations suggest that most of their stars were formed early in the universes history, and further star formation was suppressed when the universe was reionized at redshifts of z ~ 610. If this is true, most dwarf galaxies are essentially fossils: theyve evolved little since that point.To test this theory, wed like to find counterparts to our local group dwarf galaxies at these higher redshifts of z = 6 or 7. But dwarf galaxies, since they dont exhibit lots of active star formation, have very low surface brightnesses making them very difficult to detect. What are the chances that current or future telescope sensitivities will allow us to detect these? Thats the question Anna Patej and Abraham Loeb, two theorists at Harvard University, have addressed in a recent study.Entering a New RegimeThe surface brightness vs. size for 73 local dwarf galaxies scaled back to redshifts of z=6 (top) and z=7 (bottom). So far weve been able to observe high-redshift galaxies within the boxed region of the parameter space. JWST will open the shaded region of the parameter space, which includes some of the dwarf galaxies. [Patej Loeb 2015]Starting from observational data for 87 Local-Group dwarf galaxies, Patej and Loeb used a stellar population synthesis code to evolve the galaxies backward in time to redshifts of z = 6 and 7. Next, they narrowed this sample to only those dwarfs for which most star

  16. Heat shock, mass-dependent germination, and seed yield as related components of fitness in Cistus ladanifer.

    PubMed

    Delgado, J A.; Serrano, J M.; López, F; Acosta, F J.

    2001-08-01

    The different weight-number strategies of seed production displayed by individuals of a Mediterranean fire-prone plant species (Cistus ladanifer) were investigated in relation to seed germination responses to pre-germination heating. A control (no heating), a high temperature during a short exposure time (100 degrees C during 5 min) and a high temperature during a long exposure time (100 degrees C during 15 min) were applied to seeds from different individual plants with different mean seed weight. These pre-germination treatments resemble natural germination scenarios for the studied species, absence of fire, typical Mediterranean shrub fire, and severe fire with high fuel load. Seed germination was related to heat treatments and seed mass. Seed heating increased the proportion of seeds germinating compared with the control treatment. Mean seed weight was positively correlated to the proportion of germinated seeds but only within heat treatments. These results suggest that in periods without fire, the relative contributions to the population dynamics are equal for all seeds, regardless of their mass, whereas heavier seeds would be the main contribution after wildfire events. Since lighter seeds can be produced in higher quantities than heavier ones within a given fruit, the number of seedlings produced per fruit depended strongly on the germination conditions. In the absence of wildfire, fruits producing lighter seeds gave rise to more seedlings; nevertheless, they were numerically exceeded by those producing heavy seeds after a wildfire. The implications of these results are discussed in relation to their consequences on the population dynamics of this species, considering also additional information on stand flammability and changes in seed mass with plant age.

  17. The Comparative Effectiveness of Rodents and Dung Beetles as Local Seed Dispersers in Mediterranean Oak Forests

    PubMed Central

    Pérez-Ramos, Ignacio M.; Verdú, José R.; Numa, Catherine; Marañón, Teodoro; Lobo, Jorge M.

    2013-01-01

    The process of seed dispersal of many animal-dispersed plants is frequently mediated by a small set of biotic agents. However, the contribution that each of these dispersers makes to the overall recruitment may differ largely, with important ecological and management implications for the population viability and dynamics of the species implied in these interactions. In this paper, we compared the relative contribution of two local guilds of scatter-hoarding animals with contrasting metabolic requirements and foraging behaviours (rodents and dung beetles) to the overall recruitment of two Quercus species co-occurring in the forests of southern Spain. For this purpose, we considered not only the quantity of dispersed seeds but also the quality of the seed dispersal process. The suitability for recruitment of the microhabitats where the seeds were deposited was evaluated in a multi-stage demographic approach. The highest rates of seed handling and predation occurred in those microhabitats located under shrubs, mostly due to the foraging activity of rodents. However, the probability of a seed being successfully cached was higher in microhabitats located beneath a tree canopy as a result of the feeding behaviour of beetles. Rodents and beetles showed remarkable differences in their effectiveness as local acorn dispersers. Quantitatively, rodents were much more important than beetles because they dispersed the vast majority of acorns. However, they were qualitatively less effective because they consumed a high proportion of them (over 95%), and seeds were mostly dispersed under shrubs, a less suitable microhabitat for short-term recruitment of the two oak species. Our findings demonstrate that certain species of dung beetles (such as Thorectes lusitanicus), despite being quantitatively less important than rodents, can act as effective local seed dispersers of Mediterranean oak species. Changes in the abundance of beetle populations could thus have profound implications

  18. The comparative effectiveness of rodents and dung beetles as local seed dispersers in Mediterranean oak forests.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Ramos, Ignacio M; Verdú, José R; Numa, Catherine; Marañón, Teodoro; Lobo, Jorge M

    2013-01-01

    The process of seed dispersal of many animal-dispersed plants is frequently mediated by a small set of biotic agents. However, the contribution that each of these dispersers makes to the overall recruitment may differ largely, with important ecological and management implications for the population viability and dynamics of the species implied in these interactions. In this paper, we compared the relative contribution of two local guilds of scatter-hoarding animals with contrasting metabolic requirements and foraging behaviours (rodents and dung beetles) to the overall recruitment of two Quercus species co-occurring in the forests of southern Spain. For this purpose, we considered not only the quantity of dispersed seeds but also the quality of the seed dispersal process. The suitability for recruitment of the microhabitats where the seeds were deposited was evaluated in a multi-stage demographic approach. The highest rates of seed handling and predation occurred in those microhabitats located under shrubs, mostly due to the foraging activity of rodents. However, the probability of a seed being successfully cached was higher in microhabitats located beneath a tree canopy as a result of the feeding behaviour of beetles. Rodents and beetles showed remarkable differences in their effectiveness as local acorn dispersers. Quantitatively, rodents were much more important than beetles because they dispersed the vast majority of acorns. However, they were qualitatively less effective because they consumed a high proportion of them (over 95%), and seeds were mostly dispersed under shrubs, a less suitable microhabitat for short-term recruitment of the two oak species. Our findings demonstrate that certain species of dung beetles (such as Thorectes lusitanicus), despite being quantitatively less important than rodents, can act as effective local seed dispersers of Mediterranean oak species. Changes in the abundance of beetle populations could thus have profound implications

  19. Deciduous shrub growth and the greening of the Arctic in West Siberia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Forbes, B. C.; Macias Fauria, M.; Zetterberg, P.; Kumpula, T.

    2010-12-01

    Salix lanata and Alnus fruticosa are common and widespread shrub species in the low arctic tundra zone of West Siberia. They often occur in similar local habitats with the live portions of genets up to 100 years old. We have recently established that growth rings of S. lanata provide an excellent proxy for summer temperature. In that study our data were derived from shrubs growing on organic soils near the arctic coast of the Nenets Autonomous Okrug (NAO), west of the Ural Mountains. East of the Urals, in the Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Okrug (YNAO), climate is more continental and sandy soils provide a relatively nutrient-poor substrate for plant growth. By sampling two different species side by side on the Yamal Peninsula, we shed light on the relationship between deciduous shrubs and growing season temperatures in the last half century or so, a period of pronounced regional warming. We discern differences in the climate signal within a single species (S. lanata) as well as between it and a neighboring species with a strongly overlapping ecological amplitude (A. fruticosa). July is the main month for temperature correlation in Alnus, whereas Salix responds to June-July-August temperatures in both regions. The high correlations of shrub growth with summer temperature (r > 0.7 over the period 1956-2004) strongly suggest a link between increased shrub growth and recent decadal warming in both regions (~2°C). Both species showed significant correlation with the regional Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), although it was somewhat lower in YNAO compared to NAO, probably due to the relative land cover (10% vs. 20%, respectively) of erect shrubs in both areas, which affects their overall contribution to the NDVI. In both regions Salix lanata biomass peaks in the second half of July. Hand-held leaf area index data from Yamal indicate a significant difference between loamy/clayey and sandy sites. We hypothesized that this same variation would be evident at the

  20. The Dwarf Novae UZ Serpentis and SS Aurigae During Quiescence: Exposed White Dwarfs?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lake, J.; Sion, E. M.

    2000-12-01

    UZ Serpentis and SS Aurigae are both U Geminorum-type dwarf novae with similar orbital periods, outburst amplitudes, and outburst recurrence times. Since dwarf novae above the period gap have higher accretion rates, their accretion disks may remain optically thick even during quiescence. Hence the detection of the white dwarf is more difficult. UZ Ser and SS Aur offer the possiblity of extending the range of systems for which the underlying white dwarf accreter has been analyzed with model atmospheres. We have applied the Massa-Fitzpatrick (2000) flux calibration correction to the archival IUE NEWSIPS SWP spectra of these two systems, obtained during dwarf nova quiescence. We have carried out high gravity model atmosphere using the codes TLUSTY195, SYNSPEC42, ROTIN and accretion disk synthetic spectra from the grid of Wade and Hubeny (1998). We have determined the physical properties of the white dwarf accreters, including temperature, gravity chemical abundances estimates, and the accretion rate during quiescence. We discuss our results in the context of the overall picture of accretion physics in dwarf novae and the effects of accretion on the white dwarf. This research was supported in part by NSF grant AST 99-01955, NASA ADP grant NAG5-8388 and by summer research funding from the NASA- Delaware Space Grant Colleges Consortium.

  1. Divergent variations in concentrations of chemical elements among shrub organs in a temperate desert.

    PubMed

    He, Mingzhu; Song, Xin; Tian, Fuping; Zhang, Ke; Zhang, Zhishan; Chen, Ning; Li, Xinrong

    2016-01-28

    Desert shrubs, a dominant component of desert ecosystems, need to maintain sufficient levels of nutrients in their different organs to ensure operation of various physiological functions for the purpose of survival and reproduction. In the present study, we analyzed 10 elements in leaves, stems, and roots of 24 dominant shrub species from 52 sites across a temperate desert ecosystem in northwestern China. We found that concentrations of all 10 elements were higher in leaves than in stems and roots, that non-legumes had higher levels of leaf Na and Mg than did legumes, and that Na was more concentrated in C4 leaves than in C3 leaves. Scaling relationships of elements between the photosynthetic organ (leaf) and non-photosynthetic organs (stem and root) were allometric. Results of principal components analysis (PCA) highlighted the important role of the elements responsible for osmoregulation (K and Na) in water utilization of desert shrubs. Soil properties and taxonomy explained most variation of element concentrations in desert shrubs. Desert shrubs may not be particularly susceptible to future change in climate factors, because most elements (including N, P, K, Ca, Mn, Zn, and Cu) associated with photosynthesis, osmoregulation, enzyme activity, and water use efficiency primarily depend on soil conditions.

  2. Electrostatic Interactions between Elongated Monomers Drive Filamentation of Drosophila Shrub, a Metazoan ESCRT-III Protein.

    PubMed

    McMillan, Brian J; Tibbe, Christine; Jeon, Hyesung; Drabek, Andrew A; Klein, Thomas; Blacklow, Stephen C

    2016-08-02

    The endosomal sorting complex required for transport (ESCRT) is a conserved protein complex that facilitates budding and fission of membranes. It executes a key step in many cellular events, including cytokinesis and multi-vesicular body formation. The ESCRT-III protein Shrub in flies, or its homologs in yeast (Snf7) or humans (CHMP4B), is a critical polymerizing component of ESCRT-III needed to effect membrane fission. We report the structural basis for polymerization of Shrub and define a minimal region required for filament formation. The X-ray structure of the Shrub core shows that individual monomers in the lattice interact in a staggered arrangement using complementary electrostatic surfaces. Mutations that disrupt interface salt bridges interfere with Shrub polymerization and function. Despite substantial sequence divergence and differences in packing interactions, the arrangement of Shrub subunits in the polymer resembles that of Snf7 and other family homologs, suggesting that this intermolecular packing mechanism is shared among ESCRT-III proteins.

  3. Impacts of shrub encroachment on ecosystem structure and functioning: towards a global synthesis

    PubMed Central

    Eldridge, David J.; Bowker, Matthew A.; Maestre, Fernando T.; Roger, Erin; Reynolds, James F.; Whitford, Walter G.

    2013-01-01

    Encroachment of woody plants into grasslands has generated considerable interest among ecologists. Syntheses of encroachment effects on ecosystem processes have been limited in extent and confined largely to pastoral land uses or particular geographical regions. We used univariate analyses, meta-analysis and structural equation modeling to test the propositions that 1) shrub encroachment does not necessarily lead to declines in ecosystem functions, and 2) shrub traits influence the functional outcome of encroachment. Analyses of 43 ecosystem attributes from 244 case studies worldwide showed that some attributes consistently increased with encroachment (e.g. soil C, N), and others declined (e.g. grass cover, pH), but most exhibited variable responses. Traits of shrubs were associated with significant, though weak, structural and functional outcomes of encroachment. Our review revealed that encroachment had mixed effects on ecosystem structure and functioning at global scales, and that shrub traits influence the functional outcome of encroachment. Thus, a simple designation of encroachment as a process leading to functionally, structurally or contextually degraded ecosystems is not supported by a critical analysis of existing literature. Our results highlight that the commonly established link between shrub encroachment and degradation is not universal. PMID:21592276

  4. Effects of shrub encroachment on soil organic carbon in global grasslands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, He; Shen, Haihua; Chen, Leiyi; Liu, Taoyu; Hu, Huifeng; Zhao, Xia; Zhou, Luhong; Zhang, Pujin; Fang, Jingyun

    2016-07-01

    This study aimed to evaluate the effect of shrub encroachment on soil organic carbon (SOC) content at broad scales and its controls. We conducted a meta-analysis using paired control data of shrub-encroached grassland (SEG) vs. non-SEG collected from 142 studies worldwide. SOC contents (0–50 cm) were altered by shrub encroachment, with changes ranging from ‑50% to + 300%, with an effect size of 0.15 (p < 0.01). The SOC contents increased in semi-arid and humid regions, and showed a greater rate of increase in grassland encroached by leguminous shrubs than by non-legumes. The SOC content decreased in silty and clay soils but increased in sand, sandy loam and sandy clay loam. The SOC content increment was significantly positively correlated with precipitation and temperature as well as with soil bulk density but significantly negatively correlated with soil total nitrogen. We conclude the main effects of shrub encroachment would be to increase topsoil organic carbon content. As structural equation model revealed, soils properties seem to be the primary factors responsible for the extent of the changes, coarse textured soils having a greater capacity than fine textured soils to increase the SOC content. This increased effect appears to be secondarily enhanced by climate and plant elements.

  5. Divergent variations in concentrations of chemical elements among shrub organs in a temperate desert

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    He, Mingzhu; Song, Xin; Tian, Fuping; Zhang, Ke; Zhang, Zhishan; Chen, Ning; Li, Xinrong

    2016-01-01

    Desert shrubs, a dominant component of desert ecosystems, need to maintain sufficient levels of nutrients in their different organs to ensure operation of various physiological functions for the purpose of survival and reproduction. In the present study, we analyzed 10 elements in leaves, stems, and roots of 24 dominant shrub species from 52 sites across a temperate desert ecosystem in northwestern China. We found that concentrations of all 10 elements were higher in leaves than in stems and roots, that non-legumes had higher levels of leaf Na and Mg than did legumes, and that Na was more concentrated in C4 leaves than in C3 leaves. Scaling relationships of elements between the photosynthetic organ (leaf) and non-photosynthetic organs (stem and root) were allometric. Results of principal components analysis (PCA) highlighted the important role of the elements responsible for osmoregulation (K and Na) in water utilization of desert shrubs. Soil properties and taxonomy explained most variation of element concentrations in desert shrubs. Desert shrubs may not be particularly susceptible to future change in climate factors, because most elements (including N, P, K, Ca, Mn, Zn, and Cu) associated with photosynthesis, osmoregulation, enzyme activity, and water use efficiency primarily depend on soil conditions.

  6. Valuation of ecosystem services of commercial shrub willow (Salix spp.) woody biomass crops.

    PubMed

    Bressler, Alison; Vidon, Philippe; Hirsch, Paul; Volk, Timothy

    2017-04-01

    The development of shrub willow as a bioenergy feedstock contributes to renewable energy portfolios in many countries with temperate climates and marginal croplands due to excessive moisture. However, to fully understand the potential of shrub willow as an alternative crop on marginal cropland, more research is needed to understand the potential of shrub willow for providing a variety of ecosystem services. At the same time, there is much need for research developing strategies to value ecosystem services beyond conventional valuation systems (e.g., monetary, intrinsic). In this context, this project investigates the ecosystem services of shrub willow woody biomass from an environmental science perspective, and proposes a new avenue to assess ecosystem services for management purposes based on the relative value of key ecosystem services under various land management strategies (i.e., willow vs. corn vs. hay). On marginal cropland in the US Northeast, shrub willow may be used to replace crops like corn or hay. Transitioning from conventional corn or hay to willow tends to reduce nutrient loss and erosion, improve biodiversity and adaptability to climate change, and increase access to recreational activities. However, it is unlikely to change soil carbon pools or greenhouse gas emissions at the soil-atmosphere interface. By encouraging decision makers to weigh the pros and cons of each management decision (i.e., willow vs. corn vs. hay) based on the situation, the ecosystems services valuation method used here provides a clear framework for decision making in a watershed management context.

  7. a Simple Probabilistic, Biologically Informed Model of the Population Dynamics of Desert Shrubs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Worman, S.; Furbish, D. J.; Clarke, J. H.; Roberts, A. S.

    2010-12-01

    In arid environments, spatiotemporal variations in the processes of erosion and deposition are strongly coupled with the structure and dynamics of plant communities as well as the specific life behavior of individual plants. Understanding how physical transport processes affect the evolution of the land surface on geomorphic time-scales therefore requires considering how long-term changes in plant dynamics may in turn impact such processes. The development of this desert shrub population dynamics model is therefore motivated by the need to link rain-splash induced mound building at the shrub-scale with the unfolding ‘biological play’ occurring on a hillslope. Using the Master Equation to conserve shrub age, probabilistic and biologically informed statements for recruitment and mortality are formulated to function as source and sink terms respectively. This simple accounting framework, by tracking the number of individuals entering and leaving a population, captures the changes in shrub count that can be expected in time as the key variables driving the dynamics of these plant communities (i.e. precipitation) also change in time. The result is a tool through which it is possible to statistically describe the aggregate spatiotemporal behavior of different shrub populations, with their own characteristic life-cycles and physical dimensions, under different external forcing scenarios. This model features inputs that have a solid biophysical basis and insofar as it has the capacity to mimic key features of real processes, leads to outputs which appear consistent with findings reported in the literature.

  8. Effects of shrub encroachment on soil organic carbon in global grasslands

    PubMed Central

    Li, He; Shen, Haihua; Chen, Leiyi; Liu, Taoyu; Hu, Huifeng; Zhao, Xia; Zhou, Luhong; Zhang, Pujin; Fang, Jingyun

    2016-01-01

    This study aimed to evaluate the effect of shrub encroachment on soil organic carbon (SOC) content at broad scales and its controls. We conducted a meta-analysis using paired control data of shrub-encroached grassland (SEG) vs. non-SEG collected from 142 studies worldwide. SOC contents (0–50 cm) were altered by shrub encroachment, with changes ranging from −50% to + 300%, with an effect size of 0.15 (p < 0.01). The SOC contents increased in semi-arid and humid regions, and showed a greater rate of increase in grassland encroached by leguminous shrubs than by non-legumes. The SOC content decreased in silty and clay soils but increased in sand, sandy loam and sandy clay loam. The SOC content increment was significantly positively correlated with precipitation and temperature as well as with soil bulk density but significantly negatively correlated with soil total nitrogen. We conclude the main effects of shrub encroachment would be to increase topsoil organic carbon content. As structural equation model revealed, soils properties seem to be the primary factors responsible for the extent of the changes, coarse textured soils having a greater capacity than fine textured soils to increase the SOC content. This increased effect appears to be secondarily enhanced by climate and plant elements. PMID:27388145

  9. Divergent variations in concentrations of chemical elements among shrub organs in a temperate desert

    PubMed Central

    He, Mingzhu; Song, Xin; Tian, Fuping; Zhang, Ke; Zhang, Zhishan; Chen, Ning; Li, Xinrong

    2016-01-01

    Desert shrubs, a dominant component of desert ecosystems, need to maintain sufficient levels of nutrients in their different organs to ensure operation of various physiological functions for the purpose of survival and reproduction. In the present study, we analyzed 10 elements in leaves, stems, and roots of 24 dominant shrub species from 52 sites across a temperate desert ecosystem in northwestern China. We found that concentrations of all 10 elements were higher in leaves than in stems and roots, that non-legumes had higher levels of leaf Na and Mg than did legumes, and that Na was more concentrated in C4 leaves than in C3 leaves. Scaling relationships of elements between the photosynthetic organ (leaf) and non-photosynthetic organs (stem and root) were allometric. Results of principal components analysis (PCA) highlighted the important role of the elements responsible for osmoregulation (K and Na) in water utilization of desert shrubs. Soil properties and taxonomy explained most variation of element concentrations in desert shrubs. Desert shrubs may not be particularly susceptible to future change in climate factors, because most elements (including N, P, K, Ca, Mn, Zn, and Cu) associated with photosynthesis, osmoregulation, enzyme activity, and water use efficiency primarily depend on soil conditions. PMID:26818575

  10. Sources of variation in growth, form, and survival in dwarf and normal-stature pitch pines (Pinus rigida, Pinaceae) in long-term transplant experiments.

    PubMed

    Fang, Wei; Taub, Daniel R; Fox, Gordon A; Landis, R Matthew; Natali, Susan; Gurevitch, Jessica

    2006-08-01

    Determining the relative contributions of genetic and environmental factors to phenotypic variation is critical for understanding the evolutionary ecology of plant species, but few studies have examined the sources of phenotypic differentiation between nearby populations of woody plants. We conducted reciprocal transplant experiments to examine sources of variation in growth rate, form, survival, and maturation in a globally rare dwarf population of pitch pine (Pinus rigida) and in surrounding populations of normal-stature pitch pines on Long Island, New York. Transplants were monitored over a 6-yr period. The influence of seedling origin on height, growth rate, survival, and form (single-stemmed vs. multi-stemmed growth habit) was much smaller than the effect of transplanting location. Both planting site and seed origin were important factors in determining time to reproduction; seedlings originating from dwarf populations and seedlings planted at the normal-stature site reproduced earliest. These results suggest that many of the differences between dwarf and normal-stature pitch pines may be due more to plastic responses to environmental factors than to genetic differentiation among populations. Therefore, preservation of the dwarf pine habitat is essential for preserving dwarf pine communities; the dwarf pines cannot be preserved ex situ.

  11. 7 CFR 201.18 - Other agricultural seeds (crop seeds).

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 3 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Other agricultural seeds (crop seeds). 201.18 Section... SERVICE (Standards, Inspections, Marketing Practices), DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (CONTINUED) FEDERAL SEED ACT FEDERAL SEED ACT REGULATIONS Labeling Agricultural Seeds § 201.18 Other agricultural seeds...

  12. Seed Treatment. Sale Publication 4076.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wamsley, Mary Ann, Ed.; Vermeire, Donna M., Ed.

    This guide gives information about types of seeds that may require chemical protection against pests, seed treatment pesticide formulations, seed treatment methods, labeling treated seed, and safety and environmental precautions. (Author/BB)

  13. Protein Changes during the Stratification of Malus domestica Borkh. Seed.

    PubMed

    Eichholtz, D A; Robitaille, H A; Herrmann, K M

    1983-07-01

    Apple seeds (Malus domestica Borkh. cv Golden Delicious) were stratified at 5 and 15 degrees C for various lengths, weighed, and soluble protein of axis and cotyledon tissue was analyzed by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Only seeds treated at 5 degrees C germinated; seeds treated at 15 degrees C did not germinate. Optimal germination required 63 days of stratification. Excised embryos required less stratification time for germination than intact seeds. When stratification was less than 35 days, the resulting seedlings from 5 degrees C stratified embryos were dwarfed and epinastic. After 63 days of stratification, axes from 5 and 15 degrees C treated intact seeds had increased in fresh weight by 72 and 28% (w/w), respectively. The dry weights of the axes did not change significantly and both fresh and dry weights of cotyledons remained unchanged during stratification. Total soluble protein in axes and cotyledons changed very little during stratification. However, axis polypeptide profiles changed. Most obvious was the occurrence of a new polypeptide and the increase of four other clearly identifiable polypeptides during 5 degrees C treatment. The levels of the five most predominant axis proteins decreased at the same time. We observed no changes in the profiles of soluble cotyledon proteins. Control seeds kept at -10 degrees C showed none of the reported changes.

  14. Cold Brown Dwarfs with WISE: Y Dwarfs and the Field Mass Function

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kirkpatrick, J. Davy

    2012-01-01

    Why study Brown Dwarf stars? They re the lowest mass byproducts of star formation.. They provide time capsules across the age of the Galaxy.. They show what low-T(sub eff) atmospheres look like.. They may be some of our closest neighbors in space..WISE is a 40cm Earth-orbiting telescope. There are 211 stars and only 33 brown dwarfs in this volume.. This means that stars outnumber brown dwarfs by a factor of 6:1 currently.. The number of brown dwarfs will continue to increase if:: (a) more nearby Y dwarf candidates are confirmed, or (b) our distances to known Y s are overestimated, or (c) there are colder BDs invisible to WISE..

  15. Building an Unusual White-Dwarf Duo

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kohler, Susanna

    2016-09-01

    A new study has examined how the puzzling wide binary system HS 2220+2146 which consists of two white dwarfs orbiting each other might have formed. This system may be an example of a new evolutionary pathway for wide white-dwarf binaries.Evolution of a BinaryMore than 100 stellar systems have been discovered consisting of two white dwarfs in a wide orbit around each other. How do these binaries form? In the traditional picture, the system begins as a binary consisting of two main-sequence stars. Due to the large separation between the stars, the stars evolve independently, each passing through the main-sequence and giant branches and ending their lives as white dwarfs.An illustration of a hierarchical triple star system, in which two stars orbit each other, and a third star orbits the pair. [NASA/JPL-Caltech]Because more massive stars evolve more quickly, the most massive of the two stars in a binary pair should be the first to evolve into a white dwarf. Consequently, when we observe a double-white-dwarf binary, its usually a safe bet that the more massive of the two white dwarfs will also be the older and cooler of the pair, since it should have formed first.But in the case of the double-white-dwarf binary HS 2220+2146, the opposite is true: the more massive of the two white dwarfs appears to be the younger and hotter of the pair. If it wasnt created in the traditional way, then how did this system form?Two From Three?Led by Jeff Andrews (Foundation for Research and Technology-Hellas, Greece and Columbia University), a team of scientists recently examined this system more carefully, analyzing its spectra to confirm our understanding of the white dwarfs temperatures and masses.Based on their observations, Andrews and collaborators determined that there are no hidden additional companions that could have caused the unusual evolution of this system. Instead, the team proposed that this unusual binary might be an example of an evolutionary channel that involves three

  16. Antibodies raised against tobacco aquaporins of the PIP2 class label viscin tissue of the explosive dwarf mistletoe fruit.

    PubMed

    Ross Friedman, C M; Ross, B N; Martens, G D

    2010-01-01

    Dwarf mistletoes, genus Arceuthobium, are parasitic flowering plants and forest pests. In western North America, Arceuthobium americanum (lodgepole pine dwarf mistletoe) is principally found on Pinus contorta var. latifolia (lodgepole pine). Dwarf mistletoes disperse their seeds by an explosive process that involves the buildup of hydrostatic pressure within a mucilaginous fruit tissue called the 'viscin'. Living viscin tissue envelops the discharged seeds. This study examined the possibility that aquaporins, critical in plant water relations, might be found in the dwarf mistletoe fruit, specifically the viscin cells. An antibody raised against a tobacco plasma membrane intrinsic 2 (PIP2) aquaporin was used with a gold-labeled secondary antibody to probe dwarf mistletoe fruit at various developmental stages. Viscin cell plasma membranes were successfully labeled with the anti-tobacco probe, and the validity of the immunolabeling was supported by Western blot analysis, showing a strong signal at about 30 kDa, which is at the expected size of a PIP2. A definitive immunolabeling pattern, supported by quantification of gold signal per membrane length, was observed: viscin cells sampled early in development had abundant gold label at their plasma membranes (1.93 +/- 0.13 to 2.13 +/- 0.33 gold particles per microm membrane), while other areas of the cells had no discernible label. Viscin cells sampled near the time of explosive discharge had significantly less label at the plasma membrane (0.21 gold particles +/- 0.11 per microm membrane, P < 0.05), and label was seen at vesicular membranes. Aquaporins likely have a role in directing water to the viscin mucilage early in development, but are retrieved via endocytosis to prevent excess water loss from viscin cells when discharge is imminent.

  17. RE 0044+09: A new K dwarf rapid rotator with a white dwarf companion

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kellett, Barry J.; Bromage, Gordon E.; Brown, Alexander; Jeffries, Robin D.; James, David J.; Kilkenny, David; Robb, Russell M.; Wonnacott, David; Lloyd, Christopher; Clayton, C.

    1995-01-01

    We report the discovery of a new K dwarf rapid rotator with a potential white dwarf companion. The white dwarf accounts for over 90% of the observed extreme ultraviolet flux detected from this system. Analysis of ROSAT Wide Field Camera (WFC) and IUE data both suggest a white dwarf temperature of approximately 28,700 K. Optical photometry and the IUE long wavelength prime (LWP) spectrum (with the white dwarf contribution removed) imply that the late-type star has a spectral type of K1-3 V, and a distance of 55 +/- 5 pc. Using this distance, the observed IUE SWP flux, and the best-fit temperature results in a white dwarf radius of 0.0088 solar radius. The estimated white dwarf mass is then approximately 0.91 solar mass; somewhat over-massive compared to field white dwarfs. Optical photometry of the K star reveals a 'spot' modulation period of approximately 10 hr (now observed over 3 yr). However, radial velocity observations have revealed no significant variations. Spectroscopic observations place a low limit on the lithium abundance, but do show rapid rotation with a v sin i of 90 +/- 10 km/s. The K star was detected as a radio source at 3.6 cm (on two occasions) and 6 cm by the Very Large Array (VLA). The most likely evolutionary scenario is that the K star and hot white dwarf from either a wide binary or common proper motion pair with an age of 0.1-0.1 Gyr-consistent with the evolutionary timescale of the white dwarf and the rapid rotation of the K star. However, from the proper motion of the K star, this system does not seem to be associated with any of the known young stellar groups.

  18. Tracking star formation in dwarf cluster galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rude, Cody Millard

    The evolution of galaxies in dense environments can be affected by close encounters with neighboring galaxies and interactions with the intracluster medium (ICM). Dwarf galaxies may be especially susceptible to these effects due to their low mass. The goal of my dissertation research is to look for signs of star formation in cluster dwarf galaxies by measuring and comparing the r- and u-band luminosity functions of 15 low redshift Abell galaxy clusters using archival data from the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT). Luminosity functions, dwarf-to-giant ratios, and blue fractions are measured in four cluster-centric annuli from stacked cluster data. To account for differences in cluster optical richness, each cluster is scaled according to r200, where r200 is the radius of a sphere, centered on the cluster, whose average density is 200 times the critical density of the universe. The outer region of the cluster sample shows an increase in the faint-end slope of the u-band luminosity function relative to the r-band, indicating star formation in dwarf galaxies. The blue fraction for dwarf galaxies steadily rises with increasing cluster-centric radii. The change in the blue fraction of giant galaxies also increases, but at a lower rate. Additionally, the inner regions of clusters ranging from 0.185 < z < 0.7 from the "Cluster Lensing and Supernova survey with Hubble (CLASH)" are used to generate blue- and red-band luminosity functions, dwarf-to-giant ratios, and blue fractions. Comparisons of the inner region of the CLASH and CFHT clusters show an increase in the blue fraction of dwarf galaxies with redshift that is not present in giant galaxies.

  19. Water clouds in Y dwarfs and exoplanets

    SciTech Connect

    Morley, Caroline V.; Fortney, Jonathan J.; Marley, Mark S.; Lupu, Roxana; Greene, Tom; Saumon, Didier; Lodders, Katharina

    2014-05-20

    The formation of clouds affects brown dwarf and planetary atmospheres of nearly all effective temperatures. Iron and silicate condense in L dwarf atmospheres and dissipate at the L/T transition. Minor species such as sulfides and salts condense in mid- to late T dwarfs. For brown dwarfs below T {sub eff} ∼ 450 K, water condenses in the upper atmosphere to form ice clouds. Currently, over a dozen objects in this temperature range have been discovered, and few previous theoretical studies have addressed the effect of water clouds on brown dwarf or exoplanetary spectra. Here we present a new grid of models that include the effect of water cloud opacity. We find that they become optically thick in objects below T {sub eff} ∼ 350-375 K. Unlike refractory cloud materials, water-ice particles are significantly nongray absorbers; they predominantly scatter at optical wavelengths through the J band and absorb in the infrared with prominent features, the strongest of which is at 2.8 μm. H{sub 2}O, NH{sub 3}, CH{sub 4}, and H{sub 2} CIA are dominant opacity sources; less abundant species may also be detectable, including the alkalis, H{sub 2}S, and PH{sub 3}. PH{sub 3}, which has been detected in Jupiter, is expected to have a strong signature in the mid-infrared at 4.3 μm in Y dwarfs around T {sub eff} = 450 K; if disequilibrium chemistry increases the abundance of PH{sub 3}, it may be detectable over a wider effective temperature range than models predict. We show results incorporating disequilibrium nitrogen and carbon chemistry and predict signatures of low gravity in planetary mass objects. Finally, we make predictions for the observability of Y dwarfs and planets with existing and future instruments, including the James Webb Space Telescope and Gemini Planet Imager.

  20. Methane Opacities in T Dwarf Atmospheres

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Homeier, D.; Hauschildt, P. H.; Allard, F.

    2003-01-01

    We present the current status of PHOENIX model atmospheres for dwarfs of spectral type T, typical for older field brown dwarfs and low-mass brown dwarfs. In comparison to warmer L dwarf atmosphers, the spectral features of these objects can largely be reproduced by treating the influence of dust in the limiting case of complete settling, i. e. neglecting the dust opacity (Cond models). One major challenge in modelling cool brown dwarf atmospheres is the correct treatment of the molecular lines of H2O and CH4. These are the dominant opacity sources in the IR and responsible for the very blue colours of T dwarfs in the near infrared. Reliable opacity data for these absorbers are thus mandatory for a correct determination of the temperature structure as well as for detailed modelling of the characteristic absorption features in the H and K bands, which are the defining criteria of spectral class T. Line lists extracted from low temperature atmospheric databases such as HITRAN and GEISA are generally strongly limited to lower-state energies. To overcome these limits, a new list of line-by-line predictions for the methane opacities from the four lowest vibrational states has been computed with the Spherical Top Database System (STDS). Improvements of these line lists have been achieved thanks to recent successes in the experimental calibration of the molecular parameter describing the vibrational and rotational bands in the spherical top model. This allowed extrapolations to higher rotational states than previously possible. As a result our opacity sampling models now allow a much more complete reproduction of the strong features occuring in the temperature regimes of brown dwarf atmospheres. A more diffuse background opacity remains due to the extremely high line density from higher vibrational states, which at this time can be described only partly by statistical models.

  1. Preservation of recalcitrant seeds

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Recalcitrant and intermediate seeds are not included in seed banks because of misperceptions that these efforts would be futile. Between 20 and 25% of the Earth’s angiosperm species are estimated to produce recalcitrant or intermediate seeds. These species are more prevalent in the tropics and sub...

  2. Seed Development and Germination

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Seed is the fertilized and matured ovule of angiosperms and gymnosperms and represents a crucial stage in the life cycle of plants. Seeds of diverse plant species may display differences in size, shape and color. Despite apparent morphological variations, most mature seeds consist of three major com...

  3. Seed Proteomics"

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Proteomic analysis of seeds encounters some specific problems that do not impinge on analyses of other plant cells, tissues, or organs. There are anatomic considerations. Seeds comprise the seed coat, the storage organ(s), and the embryonic axis. Are these to be studied individually or as a compo...

  4. Going to Seed.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Powell, Richard R.

    1984-01-01

    Describes a unit on seeds designed to introduce students to their scientific and nutritional uses. Unit activities are easily done, employ a variety of process skills, and can be used at various grade levels. Suggests field trips to gather seeds, seed sprouting, and making cookies out of various whole grains. (JM)

  5. Needs of Seeds

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Keeley, Page

    2011-01-01

    The "Needs of Seeds" formative assessment probe can be used to find out whether students recognize that seeds have needs both similar to and different from plants and other living organisms (Keeley, Eberle, and Tugel 2007). The probe reveals whether students overgeneralize the needs of seeds by assuming they have the same needs as the adult plants…

  6. Metallic Winds in Dwarf Galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Robles-Valdez, F.; Rodríguez-González, A.; Hernández-Martínez, L.; Esquivel, A.

    2017-02-01

    We present results from models of galactic winds driven by energy injected from nuclear (at the galactic center) and non-nuclear starbursts. The total energy of the starburst is provided by very massive young stellar clusters, which can push the galactic interstellar medium and produce an important outflow. Such outflow can be a well or partially mixed wind, or a highly metallic wind. We have performed adiabatic 3D N-Body/Smooth Particle Hydrodynamics simulations of galactic winds using the gadget-2 code. The numerical models cover a wide range of parameters, varying the galaxy concentration index, gas fraction of the galactic disk, and radial distance of the starburst. We show that an off-center starburst in dwarf galaxies is the most effective mechanism to produce a significant loss of metals (material from the starburst itself). At the same time, a non-nuclear starburst produces a high efficiency of metal loss, in spite of having a moderate to low mass loss rate.

  7. Energy biomass from large rangeland shrubs of the intermountain United States

    SciTech Connect

    Van Epps, G.A.; Barker, J.R.; Makell, C.M.

    1982-01-01

    Large individual plants within a few species of rangeland shrubs were studied in several Intermountain States for their potential use in establishing biomass fuel energy plantations. Their locations were based on reports in the literature, suggestions from various range researchers, and personal knowledge. Biomass and other