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Sample records for grass species differing

  1. Variation in Soil Microbial Community Structure Associated with Different Legume Species Is Greater than that Associated with Different Grass Species

    PubMed Central

    Zhou, Yang; Zhu, Honghui; Fu, Shenglei; Yao, Qing

    2017-01-01

    Plants are the essential factors shaping soil microbial community (SMC) structure. When most studies focus on the difference in the SMC structure associated different plant species, the variation in the SMC structure associated with phylogenetically close species is less investigated. Legume (Fabaceae) and grass (Poaceae) are functionally important plant groups; however, their influences on the SMC structure are seldom compared, and the variation in the SMC structure among legume or grass species is largely unknown. In this study, we grew three legume species vs. three grass species in mesocosms, and monitored the soil chemical property, quantified the abundance of bacteria and fungi. The SMC structure was also characterized using PCR-DGGE and Miseq sequencing. Results showed that legume and grass differentially affected soil pH, dissolved organic C, total N content, and available P content, and that legume enriched fungi more greatly than grass. Both DGGE profiling and Miseq-sequencing indicated that the bacterial diversity associated with legume was higher than that associated with grass. When legume increased the abundance of Verrucomicrobia, grass decreased it, and furthermore, linear discriminant analysis identified some group-specific microbial taxa as potential biomarkers of legume or grass. These data suggest that legume and grass differentially select for the SMC. More importantly, clustering analysis based on both DGGE profiling and Miseq-sequencing demonstrated that the variation in the SMC structure associated with three legume species was greater than that associated with three grass species. PMID:28620371

  2. Photosynthesis in Grass Species Differing in Carbon Dioxide Fixation Pathways

    PubMed Central

    Morgan, Jack A.; Brown, R. Harold

    1979-01-01

    Thirty-three grass species were examined in two experiments in an attempt to locate plants with photosynthetic responses to O2, CO2 compensation concentrations, and leaf anatomy intermediate to those of C3 and C4 species. Species examined included seven from the Laxa group in the Panicum genus, one of which, P. milioides Nees ex Trin., has been reported earlier to have intermediate characteristics. The species with O2-sensitive photosynthesis typical of C3 plants showed more than 37% increase in apparent photosynthesis at 2% O2 compared to 21% O2 at 25 C and 335 microliters per liter CO2, whereas in Panicum milioides, P. schenckii Hack., and P. decipiens Nees ex Trin., members of the Laxa group of Panicum, increases ranged from 25 to 30%. The remainder of the species did not respond to O2. Species with O2 responses characteristic of C3 plants exhibited CO2 compensation concentrations of 44 microliters per liter or higher at 21% O2 and 25 to 27.5 C and species characterized as O2-insensitive had values of microliters per liter or less. The CO2 compensation concentration (Г) values of P. milioides, P. schenckii, and P. decipiens ranged from 10.3 to 23.3 microliters per liter. Other species of the Laxa group of Panicum exhibited O2 response and Г values of either C3 (P. laxum Sw., P. hylaeicum Mez., and P. rivulare Trin.) or C4 (P. prionitis Griseb.) plants. Leaves of species with O2 response and CO2 compensation values typical of C3 plants had poorly developed or nearly empty bundle sheath cells, and much larger distances and mesophyll cell numbers between veins than did the O2-insensitive ones. Vein spacings in P. milioides, P. schenckii, and P. decipiens ranged from 0.18 to 0.28 millimeter and mesophyll cell number between veins from 5.2 to 7.8. While these vein spacings are closer than those of most C3 grasses, two O2-sensitive species of Dactylis had vein spacings similar to these Panicums and veins in Glyceria striata, another O2-sensitive plant, were

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2017-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2017-01-19

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

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

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

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

    2017-01-01

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

  6. Impact of grassland management regimes on bacterial endophyte diversity differs with grass species.

    PubMed

    Wemheuer, F; Wemheuer, B; Kretzschmar, D; Pfeiffer, B; Herzog, S; Daniel, R; Vidal, S

    2016-04-01

    Most plant species are colonized by endophytic bacteria. Despite their importance for plant health and growth, the response of these bacteria to grassland management regimes is still not understood. Hence, we investigated the bacterial community structure in three agricultural important grass species Dactylis glomerata L., Festuca rubra L. and Lolium perenne L. with regard to fertilizer application and different mowing frequencies. For this purpose, above-ground plant material was collected from the Grassland Management Experiment (GrassMan) in Germany in September 2010 and 2011. DNA was extracted from surface-sterilized plant tissue and subjected to 16S rRNA gene PCRs. Endophytic community structures were assessed by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE)-based analysis of obtained PCR products. DGGE fingerprints revealed that fertilizer application significantly altered the endophytic communities in L. perenne and F. rubra but not in D. glomerata. Although no direct effect of mowing was observed, mowing frequencies in combination with fertilizer application had a significant impact on endophyte bacterial community structures. However, this effect was not observed for all three grass species in both years. Therefore, our results showed that management regimes changed the bacterial endophyte communities, but this effect was plant-specific and varied over time. Endophytic bacteria play an important role in plant health and growth. However, studies addressing the influence of grassland management regimes on these bacteria in above-ground plant parts are still missing. In this study, we present first evidence that fertilizer application significantly impacted bacterial community structures in three agricultural important grass species, whereas mowing had only a minor effect. Moreover, this effect was plant-specific and thus not visible for all grass species in each year. Consequently, this study sheds new light into the complex interaction of microbes and

  7. Feed intake and milk production in dairy cows fed different grass and legume species: a meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Johansen, M; Lund, P; Weisbjerg, M R

    2017-05-31

    The aim of this meta-analysis was to compare feed intake, milk production, milk composition and organic matter (OM) digestibility in dairy cows fed different grass and legume species. Data from the literature was collected and different data sets were made to compare families (grasses v. legumes, Data set 1), different legume species and grass family (Data set 2), and different grass and legume species (Data set 3+4). The first three data sets included diets where single species or family were fed as the sole forage, whereas the approach in the last data set differed by taking the proportion of single species in the forage part into account allowing diets consisting of both grasses and legumes to be included. The grass species included were perennial ryegrass, annual ryegrass, orchardgrass, timothy, meadow fescue, tall fescue and festulolium, and the legume species included were white clover, red clover, lucerne and birdsfoot trefoil. Overall, dry matter intake (DMI) and milk production were 1.3 and 1.6 kg/day higher, respectively, whereas milk protein and milk fat concentration were 0.5 and 1.4 g/kg lower, respectively, for legume-based diets compared with grass-based diets. When comparing individual legume species with grasses, only red clover resulted in a lower milk protein concentration than grasses. Cows fed white clover and birdsfoot trefoil yielded more milk than cows fed red clover and lucerne, probably caused by a higher OM digestibility of white clover and activity of condensed tannins in birdsfoot trefoil. None of the included grass species differed in DMI, milk production, milk composition or OM digestibility, indicating that different grass species have the same value for milk production, if OM digestibility is comparable. However, the comparison of different grass species relied on few observations, indicating that knowledge regarding feed intake and milk production potential of different grass species is scarce in the literature. In conclusion

  8. Contribution of different grass species to plant-atmosphere ammonia exchange in intensively managed grassland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mattsson, M.; Herrmann, B.; Jones, S.; Neftel, A.; Sutton, M. A.; Schjoerring, J. K.

    2008-06-01

    Species diversity in grasslands usually declines with increasing input of nitrogen from fertilizers or atmospheric nitrogen deposition. Conversely, species diversity may also impact the build-up of soil nitrogen pools. Limited information is available on how plant-atmosphere ammonia exchange is related to species diversity in grasslands. We have here investigated grass species abundance and different foliar nitrogen pools in 4-year-old intensively managed grassland. Apoplastic pH and NH4+ concentrations of the 8 most abundant species were used to calculate stomatal NH3 compensation points. Apoplastic NH4+ concentrations differed considerably among the species, ranging from 13 to 117 μM, with highest values in Festuca pratensis. Also apoplastic pH values varied, from pH 6.0 in Phleum pratense to 6.9 in Dactylis glomerata. The observed differences in apoplastic NH4+ and pH resulted in a large span of predicted values for the stomatal NH3 compensation point which ranged from 0.20 to 6.57 nmol mol-1. Three species (Lolium perenne, Festuca pratensis and Dactylis glomerata) had sufficiently high NH3 compensation points and abundance to contribute to the NH3 emission of the whole field. At the same time, other grass species such as Phleum pratense and Lolium multiflorum had NH3 compensation points below the atmospheric NH3 concentration and could thus contribute to NH3 uptake from the atmosphere. Evaluated across species, leaf bulk-tissue NH4+ concentrations correlated well (r2=0.902) with stomatal NH3 compensation points calculated on the basis of the apoplastic bioassay. This suggests that leaf tissue NH4+ concentrations combined with data for the frequency distribution of the corresponding species can be used for predicting the NH3 exchange potential of a mixed grass sward.

  9. Contribution of different grass species to plant-atmosphere ammonia exchange in intensively managed grassland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mattsson, M.; Herrmann, B.; Jones, S.; Neftel, A.; Sutton, M. A.; Schjoerring, J. K.

    2009-01-01

    Species diversity in grasslands usually declines with increasing input of nitrogen from fertilizers or atmospheric deposition. Conversely, species diversity may also impact the build-up of soil and plant nitrogen pools. One important pool is NH3/NH4+ which also can be exchanged between plant leaves and the atmosphere. Limited information is available on how plant-atmosphere ammonia exchange is related to species diversity in grasslands. We have here investigated grass species abundance and different foliar nitrogen pools in 4-year-old intensively managed grassland. Apoplastic pH and NH4+ concentrations of the 8 most abundant species (Lolium perenne, Phleum pratense, Festuca pratensis, Lolium multiflorum, Poa pratensis, Dactylis glomerata, Holcus lanatus, Bromus mollis) were used to calculate stomatal NH3 compensation points. Apoplastic NH4+ concentrations differed considerably among the species, ranging from 13 to 117 μM, with highest values in Festuca pratensis. Also apoplastic pH values varied, from pH 6.0 in Phleum pratense to 6.9 in Dactylis glomerata. The observed differences in apoplastic NH4+ and pH resulted in a large span of predicted values for the stomatal NH3 compensation point which ranged between 0.20 and 6.57 nmol mol-1. Three species (Lolium perenne, Festuca pratensis and Dactylis glomerata) had sufficiently high NH3 compensation point and abundance to contribute to the bi-directional NH3 fluxes recorded over the whole field. The other 5 grass species had NH3 compensation points considerably below the atmospheric NH3 concentration and were thus not likely to contribute to NH3 emission but only to NH3 uptake from the atmosphere. Evaluated across species, leaf bulk-tissue NH4+ concentrations correlated well (r2=0.902) with stomatal NH3 compensation points calculated on the basis of the apoplastic bioassay. This suggests that leaf tissue NH4+ concentrations combined with data for the frequency distribution of the corresponding species can be used for

  10. Basalt Weathering, Nutrient Uptake, And Carbon Release By An Exotic And A Native Arizona Grass Species Under Different Temperature Conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gallas, G.; Dontsova, K.; Chorover, J.; Hunt, E.; Ravi, S.

    2010-12-01

    During this past summer, the National Science Foundation funded a 10-week Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) program “Environmental and Earth Systems Research at Biosphere 2”. This program provides undergraduates with an opportunity to conduct guided research in environmental and Earth systems science and has resulted in this work. Biosphere 2 allows for the exploration of complex questions in Earth sciences because of its large scale and the precise control allowed over many experimental elements. The goal of this study was to observe plant-mediated weathering of granular basalt under two temperature conditions. Two grass species were studied, one native to Arizona: Tanglehead, Heteropogan contortus, and one exotic to Arizona: Buffelgrass, Pennisetum ciliar. The grasses were grown in pots located in the Desert and the Savannah Biomes in the Biosphere 2 to take advantage of a 4° C temperature difference. Understanding differences in how native and invasive grasses weather soil and take up nutrients may explain the mechanism behind current invasion of Sonoran Desert by exotic species and help predict response of native and invasive vegetation to expected increase in temperatures. Each biome also contained three replicate “control” pots without vegetation, and mixtures of the two grass species to observe possible competition between the species. Three factors were compared in this study: 1. Temperature: the same species of grass under two different temperature conditions 2. Species: Native Arizonan species vs. a species exotic to Arizona 3. Temporal: How the grasses use resources differently as they grow Leachate samples were collected and analyzed for pH, electrical conductivity, total organic carbon, total nitrogen, inorganic carbon by high temperature combustion coupled with infrared gas analysis; F-, Cl-, Br-, NO3-, NO2-, SO42-, and PO43- by ion chromatography; and cations and metals by ICP-MS. The data trends indicate that plants enhanced

  11. The impact of different grazing periods in dry grasslands on the expansive grass Arrhenatherum elatius L. and on woody species.

    PubMed

    Dostálek, Jiří; Frantík, Tomáš

    2012-04-01

    Dry grasslands are one of the most species rich and endangered types of vegetation in Europe. In the Czech Republic, dry grasslands are mainly of anthropogenic origin and were formed as a result of grazing after the clear-cutting of thermophilous oak woods. Gradual changes in the farming landscape throughout the 20th century, particularly in the 1960s, resulted in the abandonment of the relatively infertile habitats of dry grasslands. After abandonment, dry grasslands decline and degrade due to the gradual overgrowth of woody species and expansion of perennial tall grasses. In the year 2000, a grazing management program was introduced in the protected areas within the territory of Prague City to maintain the species diversity of dry grasslands. The responses of the expansive grass species, Arrhenatherum elatius L. and multiple woody species (especially, Prunus spinosa L.) to differences in grazing periods were monitored for over a decade. Grazing in spring through the end of June had the greatest impact on the reduction of A. elatius and woody species. Grazing in the height of summer through autumn did not reduce the cover of these plants, and may support the prosperity of both A. elatius and the woody species due to higher levels of nutrients.

  12. Determinants of flammability in savanna grass species.

    PubMed

    Simpson, Kimberley J; Ripley, Brad S; Christin, Pascal-Antoine; Belcher, Claire M; Lehmann, Caroline E R; Thomas, Gavin H; Osborne, Colin P

    2016-01-01

    Tropical grasses fuel the majority of fires on Earth. In fire-prone landscapes, enhanced flammability may be adaptive for grasses via the maintenance of an open canopy and an increase in spatiotemporal opportunities for recruitment and regeneration. In addition, by burning intensely but briefly, high flammability may protect resprouting buds from lethal temperatures. Despite these potential benefits of high flammability to fire-prone grasses, variation in flammability among grass species, and how trait differences underpin this variation, remains unknown.By burning leaves and plant parts, we experimentally determined how five plant traits (biomass quantity, biomass density, biomass moisture content, leaf surface-area-to-volume ratio and leaf effective heat of combustion) combined to determine the three components of flammability (ignitability, sustainability and combustibility) at the leaf and plant scales in 25 grass species of fire-prone South African grasslands at a time of peak fire occurrence. The influence of evolutionary history on flammability was assessed based on a phylogeny built here for the study species.Grass species differed significantly in all components of flammability. Accounting for evolutionary history helped to explain patterns in leaf-scale combustibility and sustainability. The five measured plant traits predicted components of flammability, particularly leaf ignitability and plant combustibility in which 70% and 58% of variation, respectively, could be explained by a combination of the traits. Total above-ground biomass was a key driver of combustibility and sustainability with high biomass species burning more intensely and for longer, and producing the highest predicted fire spread rates. Moisture content was the main influence on ignitability, where species with higher moisture contents took longer to ignite and once alight burnt at a slower rate. Biomass density, leaf surface-area-to-volume ratio and leaf effective heat of combustion

  13. Soil microbial activity under different grass species: Underground impacts of biofuel cropping

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Microbial and plant communities interact to determine local nutrient cycling rates. As lands are converted to bioenergy crops, including corn and cellulosic grasses, focus has been on changes in soil carbon sequestration. Little attention has been paid to impacts of such land conversion on the acti...

  14. Drought limitation of photosynthesis differs between C₃and C₄grass species in a comparative experiment.

    PubMed

    Taylor, S H; Ripley, B S; Woodward, F I; Osborne, C P

    2011-01-01

    Phylogenetic analyses show that C₄ grasses typically occupy drier habitats than their C₃ relatives, but recent experiments comparing the physiology of closely related C₃ and C₄ species have shown that advantages of C₄ photosynthesis can be lost under drought. We tested the generality of these paradoxical findings in grass species representing the known evolutionary diversity of C₄ NADP-me and C₃ photosynthetic types. Our experiment investigated the effects of drought on leaf photosynthesis, water potential, nitrogen, chlorophyll content and mortality. C₄ grasses in control treatments were characterized by higher CO₂ assimilation rates and water potential, but lower stomatal conductance and nitrogen content. Under drought, stomatal conductance declined more dramatically in C₃ than C₄ species, and photosynthetic water-use and nitrogen-use efficiency advantages held by C₄ species under control conditions were each diminished by 40%. Leaf mortality was slightly higher in C₄ than C₃ grasses, but leaf condition under drought otherwise showed no dependence on photosynthetic-type. This phylogenetically controlled experiment suggested that a drought-induced reduction in the photosynthetic performance advantages of C₄ NADP-me relative to C₃ grasses is a general phenomenon. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  15. Phylogenetic divergence morphological and physiological differences distinguish a new neotyphodium endophyte species in the grass bromus auleticus from South America

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The fungi of genus Neotyphodium are systemic, constitutive, symbionts of grasses of subfamily Pooideae. In the southern hemisphere most of these asexual endophytes are the result of the hybridization between two sexual species, Epichloe festucae and E. typhina, from the northern hemisphere. However ...

  16. Phylogenetic divergence, morphological and physiological differences distinguish a new Neotyphodium endophyte species in the grass Bromus auleticus from South America.

    PubMed

    Iannone, Leopoldo Javier; Cabral, Daniel; Schardl, Christopher Lewis; Rossi, María Susana

    2009-01-01

    The fungi of genus Neotyphodium are systemic, constitutive, symbionts of grasses of subfamily Pooideae. In the southern hemisphere most of these asexual endophytes are the result of the hybridization between two sexual species, Epichlo" festucae and E. typhina, from the northern hemisphere. However the ancestral sexual species have not been detected in this region. Several grasses from Argentina are infected by Neotyphodium species. These endophytes are in general very similar macro- and micromorphologically and phylogenetically conform to species N. tembladerae. However the Neotyphodium spp. endophytes of some hosts, Bromus auleticus and Poa spicifomis var. spiciformis, have not been included in this species. In this work we studied the incidence and characterized the diversity of Neotyphodium species in populations of the native grass Bromus auleticus from Argentina. The incidence of endophytes was 100% in all populations investigated. Two groups of endophytes were differentiated by their morphologies, growth rates, conidial ontogenies and by relative resistance to the fungicide benomyl. Phylogenetic trees inferred from tefA and tubB intron sequences indicated that both N. tembladerae and the novel morphotype were hybrids of E. festucae and E. typhina, but the ancestral E. typhina genotype distinguished them. Isolates from plants that inhabit coastal dunes, xerophytic forests, savannahs and hills were similar morphologically and phylogenetically to N. tembladerae, whereas the endophytes from the humid pampa plains conformed to the novel group. We propose the endophyte of Bromus auleticus from humid pampas as a new species, Neotyphodium pampeanum.

  17. Manganese toxicity thresholds for restoration grass species.

    PubMed

    Paschke, Mark W; Valdecantos, Alejandro; Redente, Edward F

    2005-05-01

    Manganese toxicity thresholds for restoration plants have not been established. As a result, ecological risk assessments rely on toxicity thresholds for agronomic species, which may differ from those of restoration species. Our objective was to provide Mn toxicity thresholds for grasses commonly used in restoration. We used a greenhouse screening study where seedlings of redtop, slender wheatgrass, tufted hairgrass, big bluegrass, basin wildrye, and common wheat were grown in sand culture and exposed to increasing concentrations of Mn. The LC50, EC50-plant, EC50-shoot, EC50-root, PT50-shoot, and the PT50-root were then determined. Phytotoxicity thresholds and effective concentrations for the restoration species were generally higher than values reported for agronomic species. Our estimates of PT50-shoot for the five restoration grasses range from 41,528 to 120,082 mg Mn kg(-1). Measures of EC50-plant for these restoration grasses ranged from 877 to >6,000 mg Mn l(-1). These thresholds might be more useful for risk assessors than those based on crop plants that are widely used.

  18. Soil nitrogen mineralization not affected by grass species traits

    Treesearch

    Maged Ikram Nosshi; Jack Butler; M. J. Trlica

    2007-01-01

    Species N use traits was evaluated as a mechanism whereby Bromus inermis (Bromus), an established invasive, might alter soil N supply in a Northern mixed-grass prairie. We compared soils under stands of Bromus with those from three representative native grasses of different litter C/N: Andropogon...

  19. INTESPECIIC DIFFERENCES IN GRASS SEED IMBIBITION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Seeds from 12 grass species were studied relative to mode of wetting and time of exposure to water to document interspecific differences in imbibition characteristics. Imbibition causes seeds to become wet, and wet seeds are more detectable to consumers than dry seeds. Thus, ge...

  20. INTESPECIIC DIFFERENCES IN GRASS SEED IMBIBITION

    EPA Science Inventory

    Seeds from 12 grass species were studied relative to mode of wetting and time of exposure to water to document interspecific differences in imbibition characteristics. Imbibition causes seeds to become wet, and wet seeds are more detectable to consumers than dry seeds. Thus, ge...

  1. Hazardous impact and translocation of vanadium (V) species from soil to different vegetables and grasses grown in the vicinity of thermal power plant.

    PubMed

    Khan, Sumaira; Kazi, Tasneem Gul; Kolachi, Nida Fatima; Baig, Jameel Ahmed; Afridi, Hassan Imran; Shah, Abdul Qadir; Kumar, Sham; Shah, Faheem

    2011-06-15

    The distribution of vanadium (V) species in soil (test soil), vegetables and grasses, collected from the vicinity of a thermal power plant has been studied. For comparison purpose soil (control soil), same vegetable and grass samples were collected from agricultural land devoid of any industrial area. A simple and efficient ultrasonic assisted extraction method has been developed for the extraction of V(5+) species from soil, vegetable and grass samples using Na(2)CO(3) in the range of 0.1-0.5 mol/L. For comparison purpose same sub samples were also extracted by conventional heating method. The total and V species were determined by electrothermal atomic absorption spectrometry using different modifiers. The validity of V(5+) and V(4+) determination had been confirmed by the spike recovery and total amount of V by the analysis of CRM 1570 (spinach leave) and sub samples of agricultural soil. The concentration of total V was found in the range of 90-215 and 11.4-42.3 μg/g in test and control soil samples, respectively. The contents of V(5+) and total V in vegetables and grasses grown around the thermal power plant were found in the range of 2.9-5.25 and 8.74-14.9 μg/g, respectively, which were significantly higher than those values obtained from vegetables and fodders grown in non exposed agricultural site (P<0.01). Statistical evaluations indicate that the sum of concentrations of V(5+) and V(4+) species was not significantly different from total concentration of V in same sub samples of vegetable, grass and soil of both origins, at 95% level of confidence.

  2. Differences in responses to flooding by germinating seeds of two contrasting rice cultivars and two species of economically important grass weeds.

    PubMed

    Estioko, Lucy P; Miro, Berta; Baltazar, Aurora M; Merca, Florinia E; Ismail, Abdelbagi M; Johnson, David E

    2014-10-20

    Crop productivity is largely affected by abiotic factors such as flooding and by biotic factors such as weeds. Although flooding after direct seeding of rice helps suppress weeds, it also can adversely affects germination and growth of rice, resulting in poor crop establishment. Barnyard grasses (Echinochloa spp.) are among the most widespread weeds affecting rice, especially under direct seeding. The present work aimed to establish effective management options to control these weeds. We assessed the effects of variable depths and time of submergence on germination, seedling growth and carbohydrate metabolism of (i) two cultivars of rice known to differ in their tolerance to flooding during germination and (ii) two barnyard grasses (Echinochloa colona and E. crus-galli) that commonly infest rice fields. Flooding barnyard grasses with 100-mm-deep water immediately after seeding was effective in suppressing germination and growth. Echinochloa colona showed greater reductions in emergence, shoot and root growth than E. crus-galli. Delaying flooding for 2 or 4 days was less injurious to both species. Echinochloa colona was also more susceptible to flooding than the flood-sensitive rice cultivar 'IR42'. The activity of alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) and pyruvate decarboxylase (PDC) in rice seedlings was increased by flooding after sowing but with greater increases in 'Khao Hlan On' compared with 'IR42'. The activity of ADH and PDC was enhanced to a similar extent in both barnyard grasses. Under aerobic conditions, the activity of ADH and PDC in the two barnyard grasses was downregulated, which might contribute to their inherently faster growth compared with rice. Aldehyde dehydrogenase activity was significantly enhanced in flood-tolerant 'Khao Hlan On' and E. crus-galli, but did not increase in flood-sensitive E. colona and 'IR42', implying a greater ability of the flood-tolerant types to detoxify acetaldehyde generated during anaerobic fermentation. Confirmation of this

  3. Differences in responses to flooding by germinating seeds of two contrasting rice cultivars and two species of economically important grass weeds

    PubMed Central

    Estioko, Lucy P.; Miro, Berta; Baltazar, Aurora M.; Merca, Florinia E.; Ismail, Abdelbagi M.; Johnson, David E.

    2014-01-01

    Crop productivity is largely affected by abiotic factors such as flooding and by biotic factors such as weeds. Although flooding after direct seeding of rice helps suppress weeds, it also can adversely affects germination and growth of rice, resulting in poor crop establishment. Barnyard grasses (Echinochloa spp.) are among the most widespread weeds affecting rice, especially under direct seeding. The present work aimed to establish effective management options to control these weeds. We assessed the effects of variable depths and time of submergence on germination, seedling growth and carbohydrate metabolism of (i) two cultivars of rice known to differ in their tolerance to flooding during germination and (ii) two barnyard grasses (Echinochloa colona and E. crus-galli) that commonly infest rice fields. Flooding barnyard grasses with 100-mm-deep water immediately after seeding was effective in suppressing germination and growth. Echinochloa colona showed greater reductions in emergence, shoot and root growth than E. crus-galli. Delaying flooding for 2 or 4 days was less injurious to both species. Echinochloa colona was also more susceptible to flooding than the flood-sensitive rice cultivar ‘IR42’. The activity of alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) and pyruvate decarboxylase (PDC) in rice seedlings was increased by flooding after sowing but with greater increases in ‘Khao Hlan On’ compared with ‘IR42’. The activity of ADH and PDC was enhanced to a similar extent in both barnyard grasses. Under aerobic conditions, the activity of ADH and PDC in the two barnyard grasses was downregulated, which might contribute to their inherently faster growth compared with rice. Aldehyde dehydrogenase activity was significantly enhanced in flood-tolerant ‘Khao Hlan On’ and E. crus-galli, but did not increase in flood-sensitive E. colona and ‘IR42’, implying a greater ability of the flood-tolerant types to detoxify acetaldehyde generated during anaerobic fermentation

  4. Examining the strength of the newly-launched Sentinel 2 MSI sensor in detecting and discriminating subtle differences between C3 and C4 grass species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shoko, C.; Mutanga, O.

    2017-07-01

    C3 and C4 grass species discrimination has increasingly become relevant in understanding their response to environmental changes and to monitor their integrity in providing goods and services. While remotely-sensed data provide robust, cost-effective and repeatable monitoring tools for C3 and C4 grasses, this has been largely limited by the scarcity of sensors with better earth imaging characteristics. The recent launch of the advanced Sentinel 2 MultiSpectral Instrument (MSI) presents a new prospect for discriminating C3 and C4 grasses. The present study tested the potential of Sentinel 2, characterized by refined spatial resolution and more unique spectral bands in discriminating between Festuca (C3) and Themeda (C4) grasses. To evaluate the performance of Sentinel 2 MSI; spectral bands, vegetation indices and spectral bands plus indices were used. Findings from Sentinel 2 were compared with those derived from the widely-used Worldview 2 commercial sensor and the Landsat 8 Operational Land Imager (OLI). Overall classification accuracies have shown that Sentinel 2 bands have potential (90.36%), than indices (85.54%) and combined variables (88.61%). The results were comparable to Worldview 2 sensor, which produced slightly higher accuracies using spectral bands (95.69%), indices (86.02%) and combined variables (87.09%), and better than Landsat 8 OLI spectral bands (75.26%), indices (82.79%) and combined variables (86.02%). Sentinel 2 bands produced lower errors of commission and omission (between 4.76 and 14.63%), comparable to Worldview 2 (between 1.96 and 7.14%), than Landsat 8 (between 18.18 and 30.61%), when classifying the two species. The classification accuracy from Sentinel 2 also did not differ significantly (z = 1.34) from Worldview 2, using standard bands; it was significantly (z > 1.96) different using indices and combined variables, whereas when compared to Landsat 8, Sentinel 2 accuracies were significantly different (z > 1.96) using all variables

  5. Co-existing grass species have distinctive arbuscular mycorrhizal communities.

    PubMed

    Vandenkoornhuyse, P; Ridgway, K P; Watson, I J; Fitter, A H; Young, J P W

    2003-11-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi are biotrophic symbionts colonizing the majority of land plants, and are of major importance in plant nutrient supply. Their diversity is suggested to be an important determinant of plant community structure, but the influence of host-plant and environmental factors on AM fungal community in plant roots is poorly documented. Using the terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism (T-RFLP) strategy, the diversity of AM fungi was assessed in 89 roots of three grass species (Agrostis capillaris, Festuca rubra, Poa pratensis) that co-occurred in the same plots of a field experiment. The impact of different soil amendments (nitrogen, lime, nitrogen and lime) and insecticide application on AM fungal community was also studied. The level of diversity found in AM fungal communities using the T-RFLP strategy was consistent with previous studies based on clone libraries. Our results clearly confirm that an AM fungal host-plant preference exists, even between different grass species. AM communities colonizing A. capillaris were statistically different from the others (P < 0.05). Although grass species evenness changed in amended soils, AM fungal community composition in roots of a given grass species remained stable. Conversely, in plots where insecticide was applied, we found higher AM fungal diversity and, in F. rubra roots, a statistically different AM fungal community.

  6. Nitrogen losses from perennial grass species.

    PubMed

    Vázquez de Aldana, B R; Geerts, R H E M; Berendse, F

    1996-04-01

    Nitrogen losses from plants may occur through a variety of pathways, but so far, most studies have only quantified losses of nutrients by above-ground litter production. We used (15)N pulse labelling to quantify total nitrogen losses from above- and below-ground plant parts. Using this method we were able to include also pathways other than above-ground litter production. To test the hypothesis that species from nutrient-poor habitats lose less nitrogen than species from more fertile soils, six perennial grasses from habitats with a wide range of nutrient availability were investigated: Lolium perenne, Arrhenatherum elatius, Anthoxanthum odoratum, Festuca rubra, F. ovina and Molinia caerulea. The results of an experiment carried out in pots in a green-house at two fertility levels show that statistically significant losses occur through pathways other than above-ground litter production. In the low fertility treatment, most (70%) losses from L. perenne occurred by litter production, but in Ar. elatius, F. rubra, F. ovina and M. caerulea, more than 50% of labelled N losses took place by root turn-over, leaching or exudation from roots. When nutrient supply increased, the (15)N losses in above-ground dead material increased in all species and in Ar. elatius, A. odoratum and F. rubra the (15)N losses via other pathways decreased. Ranked according to decreasing turnover coefficient the sequence of species was: L. perenne, A. odoratum, F. rubra, F. ovina, Ar. elatius, M. caerulea. These results suggest that species adapted to sites with low availability of nutrients lose less nitrogen (including above- and below-ground losses) than species adapted to more fertile soils.

  7. Differential effects of plant diversity on functional trait variation of grass species

    PubMed Central

    Gubsch, Marlén; Buchmann, Nina; Schmid, Bernhard; Schulze, Ernst-Detlef; Lipowsky, Annett; Roscher, Christiane

    2011-01-01

    Background and Aims Functional trait differences and trait adjustment in response to influences of the biotic environment could reflect niche partitioning among species. In this study, we tested how variation in above-ground plant traits, chosen as indicators for light and nitrogen acquisition and use, differs among taxonomically closely related species (Poaceae) to assess their potential for niche segregation at increasing plant diversity. Methods Traits of 12 grass species were measured in experimental grasslands (Jena Experiment) of varying species richness (from 1 to 60) and presence of particular functional groups (grasses, legumes, tall herbs and small herbs). Key Results Grass species increased shoot and leaf length, investment into supporting tissue (stem mass fraction) and specific leaf area as well as reduced foliar δ13C values with increasing species richness, indicating higher efforts for light acquisition. These species-richness effects could in part be explained by a higher probability of legume presence in more diverse communities. Leaf nitrogen concentrations increased and biomas s : N ratios in shoots decreased when grasses grew with legumes, indicating an improved nitrogen nutrition. Foliar δ15N values of grasses decreased when growing with legumes suggesting the use of depleted legume-derived N, while decreasing δ15N values with increasing species richness indicated a shift in the uptake of different N sources. However, efforts to optimize light and nitrogen acquisition by plastic adjustment of traits in response to species richness and legume presence, varied significantly among grass species. It was possible to show further that trait adjustment of grass species increased niche segregation in more diverse plant communities but that complementarity through niche separation may differ between light and nutrient acquisition. Conclusions The results suggest that even among closely related species such as grasses different strategies are used to

  8. Indirect effects of an invasive annual grass on seed fates of two native perennial grass species

    Treesearch

    Susan E. Meyer; Katherine T. Merrill; Phil S. Allen; Julie Beckstead; Anna S. Norte

    2014-01-01

    Invasive plants exhibit both direct and indirect negative effects on recruitment of natives following invasion. We examined indirect effects of the invader Bromus tectorum (cheatgrass) on seed fates of two native grass species, Elymus elymoides and Pseudoroegneria spicata, by removing B. tectorum and by adding inoculum of the shared seed pathogen Pyrenophora...

  9. Evolutionary Relationships between Rhynchosporium lolii sp. nov. and Other Rhynchosporium Species on Grasses

    PubMed Central

    King, Kevin M.; West, Jonathan S.; Brunner, Patrick C.; Dyer, Paul S.; Fitt, Bruce D. L.

    2013-01-01

    The fungal genus Rhynchosporium (causative agent of leaf blotch) contains several host-specialised species, including R. commune (colonising barley and brome-grass), R. agropyri (couch-grass), R. secalis (rye and triticale) and the more distantly related R. orthosporum (cocksfoot). This study used molecular fingerprinting, multilocus DNA sequence data, conidial morphology, host range tests and scanning electron microscopy to investigate the relationship between Rhynchosporium species on ryegrasses, both economically important forage grasses and common wild grasses in many cereal growing areas, and other plant species. Two different types of Rhynchosporium were found on ryegrasses in the UK. Firstly, there were isolates of R. commune that were pathogenic to both barley and Italian ryegrass. Secondly, there were isolates of a new species, here named R. lolii, that were pathogenic only to ryegrass species. R. lolii was most closely related to R. orthosporum, but exhibited clear molecular, morphological and host range differences. The species was estimated to have diverged from R. orthosporum ca. 5735 years before the present. The colonisation strategy of all of the different Rhynchosporium species involved extensive hyphal growth in the sub-cuticular regions of the leaves. Finally, new species-specific PCR diagnostic tests were developed that could distinguish between these five closely related Rhynchosporium species. PMID:24146740

  10. Dichotomy in the NRT Gene Families of Dicots and Grass Species

    PubMed Central

    Plett, Darren; Toubia, John; Garnett, Trevor; Tester, Mark; Kaiser, Brent N.; Baumann, Ute

    2010-01-01

    A large proportion of the nitrate (NO3−) acquired by plants from soil is actively transported via members of the NRT families of NO3− transporters. In Arabidopsis, the NRT1 family has eight functionally characterised members and predominantly comprises low-affinity transporters; the NRT2 family contains seven members which appear to be high-affinity transporters; and there are two NRT3 (NAR2) family members which are known to participate in high-affinity transport. A modified reciprocal best hit (RBH) approach was used to identify putative orthologues of the Arabidopsis NRT genes in the four fully sequenced grass genomes (maize, rice, sorghum, Brachypodium). We also included the poplar genome in our analysis to establish whether differences between Arabidopsis and the grasses may be generally applicable to monocots and dicots. Our analysis reveals fundamental differences between Arabidopsis and the grass species in the gene number and family structure of all three families of NRT transporters. All grass species possessed additional NRT1.1 orthologues and appear to lack NRT1.6/NRT1.7 orthologues. There is significant separation in the NRT2 phylogenetic tree between NRT2 genes from dicots and grass species. This indicates that determination of function of NRT2 genes in grass species will not be possible in cereals based simply on sequence homology to functionally characterised Arabidopsis NRT2 genes and that proper functional analysis will be required. Arabidopsis has a unique NRT3.2 gene which may be a fusion of the NRT3.1 and NRT3.2 genes present in all other species examined here. This work provides a framework for future analysis of NO3− transporters and NO3− transport in grass crop species. PMID:21151904

  11. Effect of soil acidity, soil strength and macropores on root growth and morphology of perennial grass species differing in acid-soil resistance.

    PubMed

    Haling, Rebecca E; Simpson, Richard J; Culvenor, Richard A; Lambers, Hans; Richardson, Alan E

    2011-03-01

    It is unclear whether roots of acid-soil resistant plants have significant advantages, compared with acid-soil sensitive genotypes, when growing in high-strength, acid soils or in acid soils where macropores may allow the effects of soil acidity and strength to be avoided. The responses of root growth and morphology to soil acidity, soil strength and macropores by seedlings of five perennial grass genotypes differing in acid-soil resistance were determined, and the interaction of soil acidity and strength for growth and morphology of roots was investigated. Soil acidity and strength altered root length and architecture, root hair development, and deformed the root tip, especially in acid-soil sensitive genotypes. Root length was restricted to some extent by soil acidity in all genotypes, but the adverse impact of soil acidity on root growth by acid-soil resistant genotypes was greater at high levels of soil strength. Roots reacted to soil acidity when growing in macropores, but elongation through high-strength soil was improved. Soil strength can confound the effect of acidity on root growth, with the sensitivity of acid-resistant genotypes being greater in high-strength soils. This highlights the need to select for genotypes that resist both acidity and high soil strength.

  12. An Invasive Grass Species Alters Carbon Cycling in Hawaiian Dry Forest

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Litton, C. M.; Sandquist, D. R.; Cordell, S.

    2004-12-01

    At lower elevations on the leeward side of the island of Hawaii, remnant native forests are heavily invaded by an introduced African bunchgrass, Pennisetum setaceum (fountain grass). Our research is designed to determine the consequences of this invasion for carbon (C) cycling in Hawaiian dry forests. We examined above- and belowground C pools and fluxes in 400 m2 replicated forest plots (n = 4) with fountain grass (grass plots) and in areas where fountain grass had been removed for ˜3 years (removal plots). C pools were estimated with direct sampling and allometric equations developed in situ for the dominant tree species. Aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP) was estimated as aboveground biomass increment plus litterfall minus loss from mortality (trees) and with clip plots (grass and herbaceous species); total belowground carbon allocation (TBCA) was estimated using a conservation of mass, C balance approach. Our results indicate that the invasion of a non-native grass in this ecosystem has considerable impacts on both C pools and fluxes. Aboveground, tree biomass did not differ between treatments (P = 0.57) but the presence of fountain grass led to a 7.5-fold increase in understory biomass in grass plots compared to removal plots (P < 0.01). Tree ANPP was significantly higher in removal plots for both foliage (0.10 and 0.06 kg C m-2 yr-1 for removal and grass plots, respectively; P = 0.02) and wood (0.13 and 0.05 kg C m-2 yr-1 for removal and grass plots, respectively; P < 0.01). However, grass ANPP was ˜35% greater than tree foliage productivity in grass plots. Despite this added foliar productivity, total ANPP (Tree + Grass ANPP) was significantly higher in removal plots (P = 0.04). Belowground, grass plots exhibited higher rates of soil-surface CO2 efflux (1.09 and 1.38 kg C m-2 yr-1 for removal and grass plots, respectively; P = 0.03 ). Likewise, TBCA was significantly higher in grass plots (1.21 kg C m-2 yr-1) than in removal plots (0.97 kg C m-2

  13. Long-term persistence of seeded grass species: an unwanted side effect of ecological restoration.

    PubMed

    Rydgren, Knut; Auestad, Inger; Hamre, Liv Norunn; Hagen, Dagmar; Rosef, Line; Skjerdal, Gudrun

    2016-07-01

    Spoil heaps are the visible footprint of hydropower production, particularly in vulnerable alpine environments. Speeding up vegetation development by seeding commercial grass species has been a common restoration practice for the last 50 years, but we lack information on whether seeded species decline and allow native plant cover to develop. We visually estimated cover of native vascular plants and five seeded grass species (Agrostis capillaris, Festuca ovina, Festuca rubra, Schedonorus pratensis and Phleum pratense) on eight spoil heaps at different elevations (boreal-alpine zone) in western Norway. Spoil heap vegetation was censused twice (9-20 and 24-36 years after spoil heap construction); the undisturbed surrounding vegetation was also censused on the second occasion. Total cover on the spoil heaps showed some increase, but remained far below that in surrounding areas. Cover of seeded grass species in the surroundings was low (but not negligible), indicating suboptimal establishment ability. Seeded species usually covered less than 20 % of the spoil heaps, and only F. rubra, F. ovina and A. capillaris contributed substantially. Proportional cover indicated better initial establishment by seeded species, but their cover decreased between the censuses on all but the highest located spoil heap. The persistence of seeded grass species is problematic, and despite the decrease in proportional cover, they are likely to persist for decades on spoil heaps, posing a risk of invasion of surrounding areas. We therefore recommend replacing the practice of seeding with more appropriate restoration measures.

  14. Tall fescue genomic SSR markers: development and transferability across multiple grass species.

    PubMed

    Saha, Malay C; Cooper, John D; Mian, M A Rouf; Chekhovskiy, Konstantin; May, Gregory D

    2006-11-01

    Simple sequence repeat (SSR) markers are highly informative and widely used for genetic and breeding studies. Currently, a very limited number of SSR markers are available for tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea Schreb.) and other forage grass species. A tall fescue genomic library enriched in (GA/CT)( n ) repeats was used to develop primer pairs (PPs) flanking SSRs and assess PP functionality across different forage, cereal, and turf grass species. A total of 511 PPs were developed and assessed for their utility in six different grass species. The parents and a subset of a tall fescue mapping population were used to select PPs for mapping in tall fescue. Survey results revealed that 48% (in rice) to 66% (in tall fescue) of the PPs produced clean SSR-type amplification products in different grass species. Polymorphism rates were higher in tall fescue (68%) compared to other species (46% ryegrass, 39% wheat, and 34% rice). A set of 194 SSR loci (38%) were identified which amplified across all six species. Loci segregating in the tall fescue mapping population were grouped as loci segregating from the female parent (HD28-56, 37%), the male parent (R43-64, 37%), and both parents (26%). Three percent of the loci that were polymorphic between parents were monomorphic in the pseudo F1 mapping population and the remaining loci segregated. Sequencing of amplified products obtained from PP NFFAG428 revealed a very high level of sequence similarity among the grass species under study. Our results are the first report of genomic SSR marker development from tall fescue and they demonstrate the usefulness of these SSRs for genetic linkage mapping in tall fescue and cross-species amplification.

  15. Field drying rate differences among three cool-season grasses

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Conserving cool-season grasses as silage or hay remains a challenge due to the time required for curing and the unpredictability of weather. We compared the drying rates of three grasses with differing yield potential, morphology, and physical characteristics. Inflorescence-stage meadow fescue, orch...

  16. Contrasting impacts of grass species on nitrogen cycling in a grazed Sudanian savanna

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yé, Lambiénou; Abbadie, Luc; Bardoux, Gérard; Lata, Jean-Christophe; Nacro, Hassan Bismarck; Masse, Dominique; de Parseval, Henri; Barot, Sébastien

    2015-02-01

    We investigated the impact of perennial and annuals grass species on nitrogen cycling in a Sudanian savanna of Burkina Faso. We also analysed how the local context in terms of grazing and soil properties modifies these impacts. We selected four plots differing both by the intensity of grazing by cattle and soil depth, and used soil and grass biomass 15N as integrative indicators of N cycle. If perennials are able to foster a more efficient nitrogen cycling there should be lower 15N abundances in their biomass and soil. If soil depth and cattle pressure significantly modify nitrogen fluxes, soil depth and cattle pressure should influence 15N signatures. Our results suggest that perennial grasses are more conservative for nitrogen (inhibition of nitrification, less leaching via a perennial root system, slower cycling). The increase in leaf δ15N with N concentration is steeper in Loudetia togoensis than in the three other grasses. No significant difference was found between the 15N signatures of the four plots. Our results on 15N signatures and the fact that perennial grasses are much more abundant in the plots that are less grazed and have deeper soils, confirm that the switch from perennial to annual grasses is linked to a degradation in soil fertility and pasture quality. This suggests that 15N signatures can be used as indicators of fertility.

  17. Cercosporoid fungi (Mycosphaerellaceae) 3. Species on monocots (Poaceae, true grasses).

    PubMed

    Braun, Uwe; Crous, Pedro W; Nakashima, Chiharu

    2015-06-01

    The third part of a series of monographic treatments of cercosporoid fungi (formerly Cercospora s. lat., Mycosphaerellaceae, Ascomycota) continues with a treatment of taxa on monocots (Liliopsida; Equisetopsida, Magnoliidae, Lilianae), covering asexual and holomorph species with mycosphaerella-like sexual morphs on true grasses (Poaceae), which were excluded from the second part. The species concerned are keyed out, alphabetically listed, described, illustrated and supplemented by references to previously published descriptions, illustrations, and exsiccatae. A key to the recognised genera and a discussion of taxonomically relevant characters was published in the first part of this series. Several species are lecto- or neotypified. The following taxonomic novelties are introduced: Cercospora barretoana comb. nov., C. cymbopogonicola nom. nov., Cladosporium elymi comb. nov., Passalora agrostidicola sp. nov., P. brachyelytri comb. nov., and P. dichanthii-annulati comb. nov.

  18. Indirect effects of an invasive annual grass on seed fates of two native perennial grass species.

    PubMed

    Meyer, Susan E; Merrill, Katherine T; Allen, Phil S; Beckstead, Julie; Norte, Anna S

    2014-04-01

    Invasive plants exhibit both direct and indirect negative effects on recruitment of natives following invasion. We examined indirect effects of the invader Bromus tectorum (cheatgrass) on seed fates of two native grass species, Elymus elymoides and Pseudoroegneria spicata, by removing B. tectorum and by adding inoculum of the shared seed pathogen Pyrenophora semeniperda in factorial experiments at xeric and mesic field sites. We also included a supplemental watering treatment to increase emergence and also the potential for pathogen escape. We recorded emergence and survival of native seedlings and also determined the fate of unemerged seeds. At the xeric site, Pyrenophora-caused mortality was high (34%), and effects of other pathogens and failed emergence of germinants were smaller. Cheatgrass removal negatively affected both emergence (35 vs. 25%) and spring survival (69 vs. 42%). Pyrenophora-caused seed mortality increased with inoculum augmentation for both species (22 vs. 47% overall), but emergence was negatively impacted only for P. spicata (20 vs. 34%). At the mesic site, Pyrenophora-caused mortality was low (6%). Cheatgrass removal doubled emergence (26 vs. 14%). Seed mortality increased significantly with inoculum augmentation for P. spicata (12 vs. 5%) but not E. elymoides, while emergence was not significantly affected in either species. A large fraction of seeds produced germinants that failed to emerge (37%), while another large fraction (35%) was killed by other pathogens. We conclude that facilitation by cheatgrass at the xeric site but interference at the mesic site was probably mediated through litter effects that could be ameliorative or suppressive. Apparent competition between cheatgrass and native grasses could occur through Pyrenophora, especially in a xeric environment, but effects were weak or absent at emergence. This was probably because Pyrenophora attacks the same slow-germinating fraction that is subject to pre-emergence mortality from

  19. Functionally dissimilar neighbors accelerate litter decomposition in two grass species.

    PubMed

    Barbe, Lou; Jung, Vincent; Prinzing, Andreas; Bittebiere, Anne-Kristel; Butenschoen, Olaf; Mony, Cendrine

    2017-02-16

    Plant litter decomposition is a key regulator of nutrient recycling. In a given environment, decomposition of litter from a focal species depends on its litter quality and on the efficiency of local decomposers. Both may be strongly modified by functional traits of neighboring species, but the consequences for decomposition of litter from the focal species remain unknown. We tested whether decomposition of a focal plant's litter is influenced by the functional-trait dissimilarity to the neighboring plants. We cultivated two grass species (Brachypodium pinnatum and Elytrigia repens) in experimental mesocosms with functionally similar and dissimilar neighborhoods, and reciprocally transplanted litter. For both species, litter quality increased in functionally dissimilar neighborhoods, partly as a result of changes in functional traits involved in plant-plant interactions. Furthermore, functional dissimilarity increased overall decomposer efficiency in one species, probably via complementarity effects. Our results suggest a novel mechanism of biodiversity effects on ecosystem functioning in grasslands: interspecific functional diversity within plant communities can enhance intraspecific contributions to litter decomposition. Thus, plant species might better perform in diverse communities by benefiting from higher remineralization rates of their own litter.

  20. Progress in the remote sensing of C3 and C4 grass species aboveground biomass over time and space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shoko, Cletah; Mutanga, Onisimo; Dube, Timothy

    2016-10-01

    The remote sensing of grass aboveground biomass (AGB) has gained considerable attention, with substantial research being conducted in the past decades. Of significant importance is their photosynthetic pathways (C3 and C4), which epitomizes a fundamental eco-physiological distinction of grasses functional types. With advances in technology and the availability of remotely sensed data at different spatial, spectral, radiometric and temporal resolutions, coupled with the need for detailed information on vegetation condition, the monitoring of C3 and C4 grasses AGB has received renewed attention, especially in the light of global climate change, biodiversity and, most importantly, food security. This paper provides a detailed survey on the progress of remote sensing application in determining C3 and C4 grass species AGB. Importantly, the importance of species functional type is highlighted in conjunction with the availability and applicability of different remote sensing datasets, with refined resolutions, which provide an opportunity to monitor C3 and C4 grasses AGB. While some progress has been made, this review has revealed the need for further remote sensing studies to model the seasonal (cyclical) variability, as well as long-term AGB changes in C3 and C4 grasses, in the face of climate change and food security. Moreover, the findings of this study have shown the significance of shifting towards the application of advanced statistical models, to further improve C3 and C4 grasses AGB estimation accuracy.

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

    PubMed

    Paschke, Mark W; Redente, Edward F

    2002-12-01

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

  2. CO2-caused change in plant species composition rivals the shift in vegetation between mid-grass and tallgrass prairies

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Atmospheric CO2 enrichment usually changes the contributions of plant species to biomass production of grasslands, but the types of species favored and mechanisms by which change is mediated differ among ecosystems. We measured changes in the contributions of C3 perennial forbs and C4 grasses to abo...

  3. Toxicity of Inorganic Mercury to Native Australian Grass Grown in Three Different Soils.

    PubMed

    Mahbub, Khandaker Rayhan; Kader, Mohammed; Krishnan, Kannan; Labbate, Maurizio; Naidu, Ravi; Megharaj, Mallavarapu

    2017-06-01

    In this study, three native Australian grasses namely Iseilema membranaceum (Barcoo), Dichanthium sericeum (Queensland Blue) and Sporobolus africanus (Tussock) were grown in three different soils spiked with different concentrations of inorganic mercury and the root elongation was monitored up to 28 days following the germination. Results showed that mercury at certain concentrations significantly inhibited the root growth of all three tested native grasses grown in three soils, however, the toxicity was less in the soil with high organic carbon content and acidic pH. The calculated EC50 values ranged from 10 to 224 mg/kg total Hg in soil. However, the EC10 values indicated that existing guideline values for mercury may be of protective to the native Australian vegetation. Considering their tolerance to soil mercury, these grass species have the potential for their use in rehabilitation of mercury contaminated sites.

  4. Establishment and growth of experimental grass species mixtures on coal mine sites reclaimed with municipal biosolids

    SciTech Connect

    Halofsky, J.E.; McCormick, L.H.

    2005-05-01

    The Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 requires that coal mine sites in the United States be reclaimed to establish vegetative cover that is diverse, native, and capable of plant succession. However, there is a question as to whether vegetation established on coal mine sites reclaimed with biosolids is diverse and capable of plant succession. The influx of nutrients with the addition of biosolids leads to long-term dominance by early-successional species, most notably grasses, and consequently, a low establishment of woody and volunteer species. Additionally, many grass species commonly planted in reclamation have aggressive growth habits that lead to their dominance in coal mine plant communities. The establishment and growth of selected grass mixes was evaluated to determine whether alternative grass mixes would be less competitive with woody and volunteer species as compared to commonly used grass mixes. Percent vegetative cover, species richness, and the survival of direct-seeded woody species were assessed for each treatment grass mixture. It was found that Poa compress and a mixture of P. compress, Panicum virgatum, and Trifolium repens provided adequate coverage while still allowing the highest species richness and survival of woody species. Use of these species mixtures in coal mine reclamation with biosolids in the eastern United States would likely lead to establishment of a more species-rich plant community with a greater woody species component while still providing erosion control and site protection.

  5. Relationships between functional traits and inorganic nitrogen acquisition among eight contrasting European grass species

    PubMed Central

    Grassein, Fabrice; Lemauviel-Lavenant, Servane; Lavorel, Sandra; Bahn, Michael; Bardgett, Richard D.; Desclos-Theveniau, Marie; Laîné, Philippe

    2015-01-01

    Backgrounds and Aims Leaf functional traits have been used as a basis to categoize plants across a range of resource-use specialization, from those that conserve available resources to those that exploit them. However, the extent to which the leaf functional traits used to define the resource-use strategies are related to root traits and are good indicators of the ability of the roots to take up nitrogen (N) are poorly known. This is an important question because interspecific differences in N uptake have been proposed as one mechanism by which species’ coexistence may be determined. This study therefore investigated the relationships between functional traits and N uptake ability for grass species across a range of conservative to exploitative resource-use strategies. Methods Root uptake of NH4+ and NO3–, and leaf and root functional traits were measured for eight grass species sampled at three grassland sites across Europe, in France, Austria and the UK. Species were grown in hydroponics to determine functional traits and kinetic uptake parameters (Imax and Km) under standardized conditions. Key Results Species with high specific leaf area (SLA) and shoot N content, and low leaf and root dry matter content (LDMC and RDMC, respectively), which are traits associated with the exploitative syndrome, had higher uptake and affinity for both N forms. No trade-off was observed in uptake between the two forms of N, and all species expressed a higher preference for NH4+. Conclusions The results support the use of leaf traits, and especially SLA and LDMC, as indicators of the N uptake ability across a broad range of grass species. The difficulties associated with assessing root properties are also highlighted, as root traits were only weakly correlated with leaf traits, and only RDMC and, to a lesser extent, root N content were related to leaf traits. PMID:25471096

  6. Stomatal development in Arabidopsis and grasses: differences and commonalities.

    PubMed

    Serna, Laura

    2011-01-01

    Stomata, found on the epidermis of all terrestrial plants, consist of two specialized cells called guard cells, which surround a tiny pore. Major advances have been made in our understanding of the genetic control of stomatal development in Arabidopsis and grasses. In Arabidopsis, three basic-helix-loop-helix (bHLH) genes control the successive steps that lead to stomatal formation. SPEECHLESS (SPCH) drives the cell division that initiates the stomatal cell lineage, MUTE induces the formation of the immediate stomatal precursor cell, and FAMA causes the stomatal precursor cell to divide into the two guard cells. Recent results demonstrate that these genes share functions with their grass homologs, and that MUTE is expressed later in development than its grass counterparts. Other differences in stomatal development between these two plant groups are exemplified by the PANGLOSS1 (PAN1) gene of maize. PAN1, which encodes a leucine-rich repeat receptor-like kinase with an inactive kinase domain, promotes polarization of the subsidiary mother cell and orients its cell division plane. Because such events do not exist in Arabidopsis, it is likely that the PAN1-like genes of Arabidopsis and PAN1 are paralogs. Together, these results indicate that distinctions in the regulation of gene expression and protein function are both responsible for the divergence of stomatal development between Arabidopsis and grasses.

  7. Optimal prescribed burn frequency to manage foundation California perennial grass species and enhance native flora

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Grasslands can be diverse assemblages of grasses and forbs but not much is known how perennial grass species management affects native plant diversity except for in a few instances. We studied the use of late spring prescribed burns over a span of eleven years on experimental plots in which the pere...

  8. Drought and ozone stress effects on competition among selected prairie grass species and Giant Foxtail

    Treesearch

    Gregory A. Endress; Anton G. Endress; Louis R. Iverson; Louis R. Iverson

    1999-01-01

    Differential responses of species to environmental stress may interfere with restoration of prairie ecosystems or change community structure. The impact of increasing atmospheric ozone (O3) concentrations and/or low water on the growth of Andropogon gerardii Vitm. (big bluestem) and Sorghastrum nutans (L.) Nash (Indian grass), two common warm-season native grasses,...

  9. Abiotic stresses activate a MAPkinase in the model grass species Lolium temulentum L.

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Forage and turf grasses are utilized in diverse environments which exposes them to a variety of abiotic stresses, however very little is known concerning the perception or molecular responses to these various stresses. In the model grass species Lolium temulentum (Lt), a 46 kDa mitogen-activated pro...

  10. Soil biota effects on local abundances of three grass species along a land-use gradient.

    PubMed

    Heinze, J; Werner, T; Weber, E; Rillig, M C; Joshi, J

    2015-09-01

    Biotic plant-soil interactions and land-use intensity are known to affect plant individual fitness as well as competitiveness and therefore plant-species abundances in communities. Therefore, a link between soil biota and land-use intensity on local abundance of plant species in grasslands can be expected. In two greenhouse experiments, we investigated the effects of soil biota from grassland sites differing in land-use intensity on three grass species that vary in local abundances along this land-use gradient. We were interested in those soil-biota effects that are associated with land-use intensity, and whether these effects act directly or indirectly. Therefore, we grew the three plant species in two separate experiments as single individuals and in mixtures and compared their performance. As single plants, all three grasses showed a similar performance with and without soil biota. In contrast, in mixtures growth of the species in response to the presence or absence of soil biota differed. This resulted in different soil-biota effects that tend to correspond with patterns of species-specific abundances in the field for two of the three species tested. Our results highlight the importance of indirect interactions between plants and soil microorganisms and suggest that combined effects of soil biota and plant-plant interactions are involved in structuring plant communities. In conclusion, our experiments suggest that soil biota may have the potential to alter effects of plant-plant interactions and therefore influence plant-species abundances and diversity in grasslands.

  11. Assessing impacts of introduced aquatic species: Grass carp in large systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bain, Mark B.

    1993-03-01

    Introduced species have created environmental benefits and unanticipated disasters so a priori assessments of species introductions are needed for environmental management. A checklist for assessing impacts of introduced species was developed from studies of introduced species and recommendations for planning introductions. Sterile, triploid grass carp ( Ctenopharyngodon idella) are just beginning to be used as a biocontrol agent for the management of aquatic vegetation in open waterways. Potential impacts of grass carp in open systems were identified by reviewing grass carp biology relative to the impact assessment checklist. The potential consequences of introduced grass carp were reviewed for one case study. The case study demonstrated that conclusions about potential impacts and monitoring needs can be made despite incomplete information and uncertainty. Indicators of environmental impact and vulnerability of host systems were grouped into six categories: population control, hybridization, diseases and parasites, habitat alterations, biological effects, and management issues. Triploid grass carp can significantly alter habitat and biological resources through the secondary effects of reductions in aquatic vegetation. Potential impacts and significant uncertainties involve fish dispersions from plant control areas, inability to control vegetation loss, loss of diverse plant communities and their dependent species, and conflicts with human use of the water resource. Adequate knowledge existed to assess most potential consequences of releasing large numbers of triploid grass carp in Guntersville Reservoir, Alabama. However, the assessment of potential impacts indicated that moderate, incremental stockings combined with monitoring of vegetation and biological resources are necessary to control the effects of grass carp and achieve desirable, intermediate plant densities.

  12. Valley Oak Seedling Growth Associated with Selected Grass Species

    Treesearch

    Karen C. Danielsen; William L. Halvorson

    1991-01-01

    Valley oak (Quercus lobata Née) has exhibited inadequate regeneration since the last century. Seedlings become established, but few develop into saplings. We hypothesized that the invasion of alien annual grasses into native perennial grasslands has increased oak seedling mortality by decreasing soil moisture availability. We conducted greenhouse...

  13. Evaluating indigenous grass species as on-site sediment trapping measures, northwest Ethiopian highlands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mekonnen, Mulatie; Keesstra, Saskia; Ritsema, Coen; Stroosnijder, Leo; Baartman, Jantiene

    2016-04-01

    Although many studies have been conducted to evaluate the sediment trapping efficacy (STE) of grass species as an on-site sediment trapping measure, still a lot of grass species are availab1e of which their STE is unknown. Lack of information on the STE of such grass species has a negative influence on their acceptance and practical application by the users. Therefore, this study was conducted at Debre Mewi watershed, northwestern Ethiopian highlands, to evaluate the STE of four locally dominant indigenous grass species (Desho, Senbelet, Akirma and Sebez) and one exotic species (Vetiver) using plot experiments. On average, the annual runoff produced was found to be 79; 64; 69; 71; 74; 75 l m-2, which resulted in 7; 1.7; 2.9; 3.6; 4.5 and 5.6 kg m-2 yr-1 of sediment yield on the Control, Desho, Vetiver, Senbelet, Akirma and Sebez plots, respectively. Desho had a trapping efficacy of 76 % because of its fast growth and lateral spreading nature. Vetiver and Senbelet reduced the transported sediment with 59 % and 49 % STE, respectively. Because of their slow growth nature, Akirma and Sebez showed low STEs, 36 % and 20 %, respectively. The grass species were found to be important sources of livestock feed in addition to trapping sediment and reducing soil loss. Desho, Senbelet, Akirma, Vetiver and Sebez provided 132, 106, 76, 69 and 51 t ha-1 yr-1 fresh biomass, respectively. The indigenous grass species provided a practical means to reduce sediment yield, therefore, it can be concluded that such indigenous grass species can be used as an on-site sediment trapping measure in the northwestern highlands of Ethiopia.

  14. Divergent Evolutionary Pattern of Sugar Transporter Genes is Associated with the Difference in Sugar Accumulation between Grasses and Eudicots.

    PubMed

    Wang, Wei; Zhou, Hui; Ma, Baiquan; Owiti, Albert; Korban, Schuyler S; Han, Yuepeng

    2016-06-30

    Sugars play a variety of roles in plants, and their accumulation in seeds and/or surrounding pericarp tissues is distinctly different between grasses and eudicots. However, little is known about the evolutionary pattern of genes involved in sugar accumulation in these two major groups of flowering plants. Here, we compared evolutionary rates, gene duplication, and selective patterns of genes involved in sugar metabolism and transport between grasses and eudicots using six grass species and seven eudicot species as materials. Overall, sugar transporter genes exhibit divergent evolutionary patterns, whereas, sugar metabolism genes showing similar evolutionary pattern between monocots and eudicots. Sugar transporter genes have higher frequencies of recent duplication in eudicots than in grasses and their patterns of evolutionary rate are different. Evidence for divergent selection of these two groups of flowering plants is also observed in sugar transporter genes, wherein, these genes have undergone positive selection in eudicots, but not in grasses. Taken together, these findings suggest that sugar transporter genes rather than sugar metabolism genes play important roles in sugar accumulation in plants, and that divergent evolutionary patterns of sugar transporter genes are associated with the difference of sugar accumulation in storage tissues of grasses and eudicots.

  15. Divergent Evolutionary Pattern of Sugar Transporter Genes is Associated with the Difference in Sugar Accumulation between Grasses and Eudicots

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Wei; Zhou, Hui; Ma, Baiquan; Owiti, Albert; Korban, Schuyler S.; Han, Yuepeng

    2016-01-01

    Sugars play a variety of roles in plants, and their accumulation in seeds and/or surrounding pericarp tissues is distinctly different between grasses and eudicots. However, little is known about the evolutionary pattern of genes involved in sugar accumulation in these two major groups of flowering plants. Here, we compared evolutionary rates, gene duplication, and selective patterns of genes involved in sugar metabolism and transport between grasses and eudicots using six grass species and seven eudicot species as materials. Overall, sugar transporter genes exhibit divergent evolutionary patterns, whereas, sugar metabolism genes showing similar evolutionary pattern between monocots and eudicots. Sugar transporter genes have higher frequencies of recent duplication in eudicots than in grasses and their patterns of evolutionary rate are different. Evidence for divergent selection of these two groups of flowering plants is also observed in sugar transporter genes, wherein, these genes have undergone positive selection in eudicots, but not in grasses. Taken together, these findings suggest that sugar transporter genes rather than sugar metabolism genes play important roles in sugar accumulation in plants, and that divergent evolutionary patterns of sugar transporter genes are associated with the difference of sugar accumulation in storage tissues of grasses and eudicots. PMID:27356489

  16. Are High-Impact Species Predictable? An Analysis of Naturalised Grasses in Northern Australia

    PubMed Central

    van Klinken, Rieks D.; Panetta, F. Dane; Coutts, Shaun R.

    2013-01-01

    Predicting which species are likely to cause serious impacts in the future is crucial for targeting management efforts, but the characteristics of such species remain largely unconfirmed. We use data and expert opinion on tropical and subtropical grasses naturalised in Australia since European settlement to identify naturalised and high-impact species and subsequently to test whether high-impact species are predictable. High-impact species for the three main affected sectors (environment, pastoral and agriculture) were determined by assessing evidence against pre-defined criteria. Twenty-one of the 155 naturalised species (14%) were classified as high-impact, including four that affected more than one sector. High-impact species were more likely to have faster spread rates (regions invaded per decade) and to be semi-aquatic. Spread rate was best explained by whether species had been actively spread (as pasture), and time since naturalisation, but may not be explanatory as it was tightly correlated with range size and incidence rate. Giving more weight to minimising the chance of overlooking high-impact species, a priority for biosecurity, meant a wider range of predictors was required to identify high-impact species, and the predictive power of the models was reduced. By-sector analysis of predictors of high impact species was limited by their relative rarity, but showed sector differences, including to the universal predictors (spread rate and habitat) and life history. Furthermore, species causing high impact to agriculture have changed in the past 10 years with changes in farming practice, highlighting the importance of context in determining impact. A rationale for invasion ecology is to improve the prediction and response to future threats. Although our study identifies some universal predictors, it suggests improved prediction will require a far greater emphasis on impact rather than invasiveness, and will need to account for the individual circumstances of

  17. Tackling Contentious Invasive Plant Species: A Case Study of Buffel Grass in Australia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grice, Anthony C.; Friedel, Margaret H.; Marshall, Nadine A.; van Klinken, Rieks D.

    2012-02-01

    Introduced plants that have both production values and negative impacts can be contentious. Generally they are either treated as weeds and their use prohibited; or unfettered exploitation is permitted and land managers must individually contend with any negative effects. Buffel grass ( Cenchrus ciliaris) is contentious in Australia and there has been no attempt to broadly and systematically address the issues surrounding it. However, recent research indicates that there is some mutual acceptance by proponents and opponents of each others' perspectives and we contend that this provides the basis for a national approach. It would require thorough and on-going consultation with stakeholders and development of realistic goals that are applicable across a range of scales and responsive to regional differences in costs, benefits and socio-economic and biophysical circumstances. It would be necessary to clearly allocate responsibilities and ascertain the most appropriate balance between legislative and non-legislative mechanisms. A national approach could involve avoiding the introduction of additional genetic material, countering proliferation in regions where the species is sparse, preventing incursion into conservation reserves where it is absent, containing strategically located populations and managing communities to prevent or reduce dominance by buffel grass. This approach could be applied to other contentious plant species.

  18. Discriminating indicator grass species for rangeland degradation assessment using hyperspectral data resampled to AISA Eagle resolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mansour, Khalid; Mutanga, Onisimo; Everson, Terry; Adam, Elhadi

    2012-06-01

    The development of techniques to estimate and map increaser grass species is critical for better understanding the condition of the rangeland and levels of rangeland degradation. This paper investigates whether canopy reflectance spectra, resampled to AISA Eagle resolution can discriminate among four increaser species representing different levels of rangeland degradation. Canopy spectral measurements were taken from the four indicator species: Hyparrhenia hirta (HH), Eragrostis curvula (EC), Sporobolus africanus (SA), and Aristida diffusa (AD). The random forest algorithm and a forward variable selection technique were used to identify optimal wavelengths for discriminating the species. Results revealed that the optimal number of wavelengths (n = 8) that yielded the lowest OOB error (11.36%) in discriminating among the four increaser species are located in 966.7, 877.6, 691.9, 718.7, 902.7, 854.8, 674.1 and 703 nm. These wavelengths are located in the visible, red-edge and near-infrared regions of the electromagnetic spectrum. The random forest algorithm can accurately discriminate species with an overall accuracy of 88.64% and a KHAT value of 0.85. The study demonstrated the possibility to upscale the method to airborne sensors such as AISA Eagle for mapping indicator species of rangeland degradation. A rotational grazing management plan should be considered as a way to create sustainable rangeland management in degraded areas.

  19. Degradation of bermuda and orchard grass by species of ruminal bacteria.

    PubMed

    Akin, D E; Rigsby, L L

    1985-10-01

    Fiber degradation in Bermuda grass and orchard grass was evaluated gravimetrically and by scanning and transmission electron microscopy after incubation with pure cultures of rumen bacteria. Lachnospira multiparus D-32 was unable to degrade plant cell wall components. Butyrivibrio fibrisolvens 49 degraded 6 and 14.9% of the fiber components in Bermuda grass and orchard grass, respectively, and Ruminococcus albus 7 degraded 11.4% orchard grass fiber but none in Bermuda grass. Both B. fibrisolvens and R. albus lacked capsules, did not adhere to fiber, and degraded only portions of the more easily available plant cell walls. R. flavefaciens FD-1 was the most active fiber digester, degrading 8.2 and 55.3% of Bermuda and orchard grass fiber, respectively. The microbe had a distinct capsule and adhered to fiber, especially that which is slowly degraded, but was able to cause erosion and disorganization of the more easily digested cell walls, apparently by extracellular enzymes. Results indicated that more digestible cell walls could be partially degraded by enzymes disassociated from cellulolytic and noncellulolytic bacteria, and data were consistent with the hypothesis that the more slowly degraded plant walls required attachment. Microbial species as well as the cell wall architecture influenced the physical association with and digestion of plant fiber.

  20. Grassland structural heterogeneity in a savanna is driven more by productivity differences than by consumption differences between lawn and bunch grasses.

    PubMed

    Veldhuis, Michiel P; Fakkert, Heleen F; Berg, Matty P; Olff, Han

    2016-11-01

    Savanna grasslands are characterized by high spatial heterogeneity in vegetation structure, aboveground biomass and nutritional quality, with high quality short-grass grazing lawns forming mosaics with patches of tall bunch grasses of lower quality. This heterogeneity can arise because of local differences in consumption, because of differences in productivity, or because both processes enforce each other (more production and consumption). However, the relative importance of both processes in maintaining mosaics of lawn and bunch grassland types has not been measured. Also their interplay been not been assessed across landscape gradients. In a South African savanna, we, therefore, measured the seasonal changes in primary production, nutritional quality and herbivore consumption (amount and percentage) of grazing lawns and adjacent bunch grass patches across a rainfall gradient. We found both higher amounts of primary production and, to a smaller extent, consumption for bunch grass patches. In addition, for bunch grasses primary production increased towards higher rainfall while foliar nitrogen concentrations decreased. Foliar nitrogen concentrations of lawn grasses decreased much less with increasing rainfall. Consequently, large herbivores targeted the biomass produced on grazing lawns with on average 75 % of the produced biomass consumed. We conclude that heterogeneity in vegetation structure in this savanna ecosystem is better explained by small-scale differences in productivity between lawn and bunch grass vegetation types than by local differences in consumption rates. Nevertheless, the high nutritional quality of grazing lawns is highly attractive and, therefore, important for the maintenance of the heterogeneity in species composition (i.e. grazing lawn maintenance).

  1. Optimal prescribed burn frequency to manage foundation California perennial grass species and enhance native flora

    DOE PAGES

    Carlsen, Tina M.; Espeland, Erin K.; Paterson, Lisa E.; ...

    2017-06-06

    Grasslands can be diverse assemblages of grasses and forbs but not much is known how perennial grass species management affects native plant diversity except in a few instances. We studied the use of late-spring prescribed burns over a span of 11 years where the perennial grass Poa secunda was the foundation species, with four additional years of measurements after the final burn. We also evaluated burn effects on P. secunda, the rare native annual forb Amsinckia grandiflora and local native and exotic species. Annual burning maintained P. secunda number, resulted in significant expansion, the lowest thatch and exotic grass cover,more » the highest percentage of bare ground, but also the lowest native forb and highest exotic forb cover. Burning approximately every 3 years maintained a lower number of P. secunda plants, allowed for expansion, and resulted in the highest native forb cover with a low exotic grass cover. Burning approximately every 5 years and the control (burned once from a wildfire) resulted in a decline in P. secunda number, the highest exotic grass and thatch cover and the lowest percentage of bare ground. P. secunda numbers were maintained up to 4 years after the final burn. And while local native forbs benefited from burning approximately every 3 years, planted A. grandiflora performed best in the control treatment. A. grandiflora did not occur naturally at the site; therefore, no seed bank was present to provide across-year protection from the effects of the burns. Thus, perennial grass species management must also consider other native species life history and phenology to enhance native flora diversity.« less

  2. Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungal community differs between a coexisting native shrub and introduced annual grass.

    PubMed

    Busby, Ryan R; Stromberger, Mary E; Rodriguez, Giselle; Gebhart, Dick L; Paschke, Mark W

    2013-02-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) have been implicated in non-native plant invasion success and persistence. However, few studies have identified the AMF species associating directly with plant invaders, or how these associations differ from those of native plant species. Identifying changes to the AMF community due to plant invasion could yield key plant-AMF interactions necessary for the restoration of native plant communities. This research compared AMF associating with coexisting Bromus tectorum, an invasive annual grass, and Artemisia tridentata, the dominant native shrub in western North America. At three sites, soil and root samples from Bromus and Artemisia were collected. Sporulation was induced using trap cultures, and spores were identified using morphological characteristics. DNA was extracted from root and soil subsamples and amplified. Sequences obtained were aligned and analyzed to compare diversity, composition, and phylogenetic distance between hosts and sites. Richness of AMF species associated with Artemisia in cultures was higher than AMF species associated with Bromus. Gamma diversity was similar and beta diversity was higher in AMF associated with Bromus compared to Artemisia. AMF community composition differed between hosts in both cultures and roots. Two AMF species (Archaeospora trappei and Viscospora viscosum) associated more frequently with Artemisia than Bromus across multiple sites. AMF communities in Bromus roots were more phylogenetically dispersed than in Artemisia roots, indicating a greater competition for resources within the invasive grass. Bromus associated with an AMF community that differed from Artemisia in a number of ways, and these changes could restrict native plant establishment.

  3. Hybridization patterns in two contact zones of grass snakes reveal a new Central European snake species.

    PubMed

    Kindler, Carolin; Chèvre, Maxime; Ursenbacher, Sylvain; Böhme, Wolfgang; Hille, Axel; Jablonski, Daniel; Vamberger, Melita; Fritz, Uwe

    2017-08-07

    Recent studies found major conflicts between traditional taxonomy and genetic differentiation of grass snakes and identified previously unknown secondary contact zones. Until now, little is known about gene flow across these contact zones. Using two mitochondrial markers and 13 microsatellite loci, we examined two contact zones. One, largely corresponding to the Rhine region, involves the western subspecies Natrix natrix helvetica and the eastern subspecies N. n. natrix, whereas in the other, more easterly, contact zone two lineages meet that are currently identified with N. n. natrix and N. n. persa. This second contact zone runs across Central Europe to the southern Balkans. Our analyses reveal that the western contact zone is narrow, with parapatrically distributed mitochondrial lineages and limited, largely unidirectional nuclear gene flow. In contrast, the eastern contact zone is very wide, with massive nuclear admixture and broadly overlapping mitochondrial lineages. In combination with additional lines of evidence (morphology, phylogeny, divergence times), we conclude that these differences reflect different stages in the speciation process and that Natrix helvetica should be regarded as a distinct species. We suggest a nomenclatural framework for presently recognized grass snake taxa and highlight the need for reconciling the conflicts between genetics and taxonomy.

  4. The Seed Semipermeable Layer and Its Relation to Seed Quality Assessment in Four Grass Species.

    PubMed

    Lv, Yan Y; He, Xue Q; Hu, Xiao W; Wang, Yan R

    2017-01-01

    The existence of a semipermeable layer in grass seeds has been extensively reported, yet knowledge of its influence on tests for seed viability and vigor that depend upon measurement of electrical conductivity (EC) is limited. This study determined the presence and location of the semipermeable layer, and its relation to seed viability and vigor assessment, in seeds of four important grass species-Elymus nutans Griseb., Lolium perenne L., Leymus chinensis (Trin.) Tzvel., and Avena sativa L. Intact seeds of E. nutans, Lolium perenne, and Leymus chinensis exhibited little staining with triphenyl tetrazolium chloride (TTC), and there were no differences in EC between seeds with different germination percentage (GP) (P > 0.05). After piercing the seed coat, however, all three species displayed positive staining with TTC, along with a significant negative correlation between EC and GP (E. nutans: R(2) = 0.7708; Lolium perenne: R(2)= 0.8414; Leymus chinensis: R(2) = 0.859; P < 0.01). In contrast, both intact and pierced seeds of A. sativa possessed a permeable seed coat that showed positive staining with TTC and EC values that were significantly negatively correlated with GP [R(2) = 0.9071 (intact) and 0.9597 (pierced); P < 0.01]. In commercial seed lots of A. sativa, a field emergence test indicated that EC showed a significant negative correlation with field emergence at two sowing dates (R(2)= 0.6069, P < 0.01 and 0.5316, P < 0.05). Analysis of seed coat permeability revealed the presence of a semipermeable layer located in the seed coat adjacent to the endosperm in E. nutans, Lolium perenne, and Leymus chinensis; however, no semipermeable layer was observed in A. sativa. This is the first report of the absence of a semipermeable layer in a grass species. The existence of a semipermeable layer is one of the most important factors affecting seed viability and vigor testing (based on EC measurement) in E. nutans, Lolium perenne, and Leymus chinensis. Increasing the

  5. The Seed Semipermeable Layer and Its Relation to Seed Quality Assessment in Four Grass Species

    PubMed Central

    Lv, Yan Y.; He, Xue Q.; Hu, Xiao W.; Wang, Yan R.

    2017-01-01

    The existence of a semipermeable layer in grass seeds has been extensively reported, yet knowledge of its influence on tests for seed viability and vigor that depend upon measurement of electrical conductivity (EC) is limited. This study determined the presence and location of the semipermeable layer, and its relation to seed viability and vigor assessment, in seeds of four important grass species-Elymus nutans Griseb., Lolium perenne L., Leymus chinensis (Trin.) Tzvel., and Avena sativa L. Intact seeds of E. nutans, Lolium perenne, and Leymus chinensis exhibited little staining with triphenyl tetrazolium chloride (TTC), and there were no differences in EC between seeds with different germination percentage (GP) (P > 0.05). After piercing the seed coat, however, all three species displayed positive staining with TTC, along with a significant negative correlation between EC and GP (E. nutans: R2 = 0.7708; Lolium perenne: R2= 0.8414; Leymus chinensis: R2 = 0.859; P < 0.01). In contrast, both intact and pierced seeds of A. sativa possessed a permeable seed coat that showed positive staining with TTC and EC values that were significantly negatively correlated with GP [R2 = 0.9071 (intact) and 0.9597 (pierced); P < 0.01]. In commercial seed lots of A. sativa, a field emergence test indicated that EC showed a significant negative correlation with field emergence at two sowing dates (R2= 0.6069, P < 0.01 and 0.5316, P < 0.05). Analysis of seed coat permeability revealed the presence of a semipermeable layer located in the seed coat adjacent to the endosperm in E. nutans, Lolium perenne, and Leymus chinensis; however, no semipermeable layer was observed in A. sativa. This is the first report of the absence of a semipermeable layer in a grass species. The existence of a semipermeable layer is one of the most important factors affecting seed viability and vigor testing (based on EC measurement) in E. nutans, Lolium perenne, and Leymus chinensis. Increasing the permeability

  6. Differences in photosynthetic syndromes of four halophytic marsh grasses in Pakistan.

    PubMed

    Moinuddin, Muhammad; Gulzar, Salman; Hameed, Abdul; Gul, Bilquees; Ajmal Khan, M; Edwards, Gerald E

    2017-01-01

    Salt-tolerant grasses of warm sub-tropical ecosystems differ in their distribution patterns with respect to salinity and moisture regimes. Experiments were conducted on CO2 fixation and light harvesting processes of four halophytic C4 grasses grown under different levels of salinity (0, 200 and 400 mM NaCl) under ambient environmental conditions. Two species were from a high saline coastal marsh (Aeluropus lagopoides and Sporobolus tremulus) and two were from a moderate saline sub-coastal draw-down tidal marsh (Paspalum paspalodes and Paspalidium geminatum). Analyses of the carbon isotope ratios of leaf biomass in plants indicated that carbon assimilation was occurring by C4 photosynthesis in all species during growth under varying levels of salinity. In the coastal species, with increasing salinity, there was a parallel decrease in rates of CO2 fixation (A), transpiration (E) and stomatal conductance (g s), with no effect on water use efficiency (WUE). These species were adapted for photoprotection by an increase in the Mehler reaction with an increase in activity of PSII/CO2 fixed accompanied by high levels of antioxidant enzymes, superoxide dismutase and ascorbate peroxidase. The sub-coastal species P. paspalodes and P. geminatum had high levels of carotenoid pigments and non-photochemical quenching by the xanthophyll cycle.

  7. Provenance, life span, and phylogeny do not affect grass species' responses to nitrogen and phosphorus.

    PubMed

    Seabloom, Eric W; Benfield, Cara D; Borer, Elizabeth T; Stanley, Amanda G; Kaye, Thomas N; Dunwiddie, Peter W

    2011-09-01

    Successful conservation management requires an understanding of how species respond to intervention. Native and exotic species may respond differently to management interventions due to differences arising directly from their origin (i.e., provenance) or indirectly due to biased representations of different life history types (e.g., annual vs. perennial life span) or phylogenetic lineages among provenance (i.e., native or exotic origin) groups. Thus, selection of a successful management regime requires knowledge of the life history and provenance-bias in the local flora and an understanding of the interplay between species characteristics across existing environmental gradients in the landscape. Here we tested whether provenance, phylogeny, and life span interact to determine species distributions along natural gradients of soil chemistry (e.g., soil nitrogen and phosphorus) in 10 upland prairie sites along a 600-km latitudinal transect running from southern Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada, to the Willamette Valley in Oregon, USA. We found that soil nitrate, phosphorus, and pH exerted strong control over community composition. However, species distributions along environmental gradients were unrelated to provenance, life span, or phylogenetic groupings. We then used a greenhouse experiment to more precisely measure the response of common grass species to nitrogen and phosphorus supply. As with the field data, species responses to nutrient additions did not vary as a function of provenance, life span, or phylogeny. Native and exotic species differed strongly in the relationship between greenhouse-measured tolerance of low nutrients and field abundance. Native species with the greatest ability to maintain biomass production at low nutrient supply rates were most abundant in field surveys, as predicted by resource competition theory. In contrast, there was no relationship between exotic-species biomass at low nutrient levels and field abundance. The

  8. Close Association of Azospirillum and Diazotrophic Rods with Different Root Zones of Kallar Grass

    PubMed Central

    Reinhold, Barbara; Hurek, Thomas; Niemann, Ernst-Georg; Fendrik, Istvan

    1986-01-01

    The populations of diazotrophic and nondiazotrophic bacteria were estimated in the endorhizosphere and on the rhizoplane of Kallar grass (Leptochloa fusca) and in nonrhizosphere soil. Microaerophilic diazotrophs were counted by the most-probable-number method, using two semisolid malate media, one of them adapted to the saline-sodic Kallar grass soil. Plate counts of aerobic heterotrophic bacteria were done on nutrient agar. The dominating N2-fixing bacteria were differentiated by morphological, serological, and physiological criteria. Isolates, which could not be assigned to a known species, were shown to fix nitrogen unequivocally by 15N2 incorporation. On the rhizoplane we found 2.0 × 107 diazotrophs per g (dry weight) of root, which consisted in equal numbers of Azospirillum lipoferum and Azospirillum-like bacteria showing characteristics different from those of known Azospirillum species. Surface sterilization by NaOCI treatment effectively reduced the rhizoplane population, so that bacteria released by homogenization of roots could be regarded as endorhizosphere bacteria. Azospirillum spp. were not detected in the endorhizosphere, but diazotrophic, motile, straight rods producing a yellow pigment occurred with 7.3 × 107 cells per g (dry weight) of root in the root interior. In nonrhizosphere soil we found 3.1 × 104 nitrogen-fixing bacteria per g. Diazotrophs were preferentially enriched in the Kallar grass rhizosphere. In nonrhizosphere soil they made up 0.2% of the total aerobic heterotrophic microflora, on the rhizoplane they made up 7.1%, and in the endorhizosphere they made up 85%. Owing to high numbers in and on roots and their preferential enrichment, we concluded that diazotrophs are in close association with Kallar grass. They formed entirely different populations on the rhizoplane and in the endorhizosphere. PMID:16347149

  9. Habitat-specific differences in plasticity of foliar δ13C in temperate steppe grasses

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Yanjie; Zhang, Lirong; Niu, Haishan; Sun, Yue; Xu, Xingliang

    2014-01-01

    A decrease in foliar δ13C with increasing precipitation is a common tendency in steppe plants. However, the rate of decrease has been reported to differ between different species or populations. We here hypothesized that plant populations in the same habitat of temperate steppes may not differ in foliar δ13C response patterns to precipitation, but could differ in the levels of plasticity of foliar δ13C across different habitats. In order to test this hypothesis, we conducted controlled watering experiments in northeast China at five sites along a west–east transect at latitude 44°N, which show substantial interannual fluctuations and intra-annual changes in precipitation among them. In 2001, watering treatment (six levels, three replicates) was assigned to 18 plots at each site. The responses of foliar δ13C to precipitation (i.e., the sum of watering and rainfall) were determined in populations of several grass species that were common across all sites. Although similar linear regression slopes were observed for populations of different species growing at the same site, significantly different slopes were obtained for populations of the same species growing at different sites. Further, the slope of the line progressively decreased from Site I to Site V for all species in this study. These results suggest habitat-specific differences in plasticity of foliar δ13C in temperate steppe grasses. This indicates that species' δ13C response to precipitation is conservative at the same site due to their long-term acclimation, but the mechanism responsible behind this needs further investigations. PMID:25035804

  10. Meira siamensis sp. nov., a novel anamorphic ustilaginomycetous yeast species isolated from the vetiver grass phylloplane.

    PubMed

    Limtong, Savitree; Polburee, Pirapan; Chamnanpa, Thunnicha; Khunnamwong, Pannida; Limtong, Pitayakon

    2017-07-01

    Two strains, DMKU-LV83 and DMKU-LV85, of a novel yeast species were isolated from the phylloplane of vetiver grass collected in Thailand by plating of leaf washings. Analysis of the sequences of the D1/D2 region of the large subunit (LSU) rRNA gene showed that the two strains represent a single novel species and most closely related to Meira miltonrushii. However, the novel species differed from the type strain of M. miltonrushii (MCA 3882T) by 5.5 % nucleotide substitutions in the D1/D2 region and 8.9 % nucleotide substitutions in the ITS region. The phylogenetic analysis based on the D1/D2 region of the LSU rRNA gene confirmed the placement of the novel species in the Meira clade and its close affinity with M. miltonrushii. Therefore, the species Meira siamensis sp. nov. is proposed. The type strain is DMKU-LV83T (=CBS 12860T=BCC 61180T).

  11. Endophytic Epichloë species and their grass hosts: from evolution to applications.

    PubMed

    Saikkonen, Kari; Young, Carolyn A; Helander, Marjo; Schardl, Christopher L

    2016-04-01

    The closely linked fitness of the Epichloë symbiont and the host grass is presumed to align the coevolution of the species towards specialization and mutually beneficial cooperation. Ecological observations demonstrating that Epichloë-grass symbioses can modulate grassland ecosystems via both above- and belowground ecosystem processes support this. In many cases the detected ecological importance of Epichloë species is directly or indirectly linked to defensive mutualism attributable to alkaloids of fungal-origin. Now, modern genetic and molecular techniques enable the precise studies on evolutionary origin of endophytic Epichloë species, their coevolution with host grasses and identification the genetic variation that explains phenotypic diversity in ecologically relevant characteristics of Epichloë-grass associations. Here we briefly review the most recent findings in these areas of research using the present knowledge of the genetic variation that explains the biosynthetic pathways driving the diversity of alkaloids produced by the endophyte. These findings underscore the importance of genetic interplay between the fungus and the host in shaping their coevolution and ecological role in both natural grass ecosystems, and in the agricultural arena.

  12. Yield and nutritive value differences among cool-season grasses

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Grasses are typically utilized at a vegetative stage of maturity under managed intensive rotational grazing. We compared the yield and nutritive value of the leaf and stem fraction, and total herbage of eight erect-growing, perennial cool-season grasses during 30-day intervals in the spring, summer,...

  13. Effects of grass species and grass growth on atmospheric nitrogen deposition to a bog ecosystem surrounded by intensive agricultural land use

    PubMed Central

    Hurkuck, Miriam; Brümmer, Christian; Mohr, Karsten; Spott, Oliver; Well, Reinhard; Flessa, Heinz; Kutsch, Werner L

    2015-01-01

    We applied a 15N dilution technique called “Integrated Total Nitrogen Input” (ITNI) to quantify annual atmospheric N input into a peatland surrounded by intensive agricultural practices over a 2-year period. Grass species and grass growth effects on atmospheric N deposition were investigated using Lolium multiflorum and Eriophorum vaginatum and different levels of added N resulting in increased biomass production. Plant biomass production was positively correlated with atmospheric N uptake (up to 102.7 mg N pot−1) when using Lolium multiflorum. In contrast, atmospheric N deposition to Eriophorum vaginatum did not show a clear dependency to produced biomass and ranged from 81.9 to 138.2 mg N pot−1. Both species revealed a relationship between atmospheric N input and total biomass N contents. Airborne N deposition varied from about 24 to 55 kg N ha−1 yr−1. Partitioning of airborne N within the monitor system differed such that most of the deposited N was found in roots of Eriophorum vaginatum while the highest share was allocated in aboveground biomass of Lolium multiflorum. Compared to other approaches determining atmospheric N deposition, ITNI showed highest airborne N input and an up to fivefold exceedance of the ecosystem-specific critical load of 5–10 kg N ha−1 yr−1. PMID:26257870

  14. Effects of grass species and grass growth on atmospheric nitrogen deposition to a bog ecosystem surrounded by intensive agricultural land use.

    PubMed

    Hurkuck, Miriam; Brümmer, Christian; Mohr, Karsten; Spott, Oliver; Well, Reinhard; Flessa, Heinz; Kutsch, Werner L

    2015-07-01

    We applied a (15)N dilution technique called "Integrated Total Nitrogen Input" (ITNI) to quantify annual atmospheric N input into a peatland surrounded by intensive agricultural practices over a 2-year period. Grass species and grass growth effects on atmospheric N deposition were investigated using Lolium multiflorum and Eriophorum vaginatum and different levels of added N resulting in increased biomass production. Plant biomass production was positively correlated with atmospheric N uptake (up to 102.7 mg N pot(-1)) when using Lolium multiflorum. In contrast, atmospheric N deposition to Eriophorum vaginatum did not show a clear dependency to produced biomass and ranged from 81.9 to 138.2 mg N pot(-1). Both species revealed a relationship between atmospheric N input and total biomass N contents. Airborne N deposition varied from about 24 to 55 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1). Partitioning of airborne N within the monitor system differed such that most of the deposited N was found in roots of Eriophorum vaginatum while the highest share was allocated in aboveground biomass of Lolium multiflorum. Compared to other approaches determining atmospheric N deposition, ITNI showed highest airborne N input and an up to fivefold exceedance of the ecosystem-specific critical load of 5-10 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1).

  15. Measurement of key compositional parameters in two species of energy grass by Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Allison, Gordon G; Morris, Catherine; Hodgson, Edward; Jones, Jenny; Kubacki, Michal; Barraclough, Tim; Yates, Nicola; Shield, Ian; Bridgwater, Anthony V; Donnison, Iain S

    2009-12-01

    Two energy grass species, switch grass, a North American tuft grass, and reed canary grass, a European native, are likely to be important sources of biomass in Western Europe for the production of biorenewable energy. Matching chemical composition to conversion efficiency is a primary goal for improvement programmes and for determining the quality of biomass feed-stocks prior to use and there is a need for methods which allow cost effective characterisation of chemical composition at high rates of sample through-put. In this paper we demonstrate that nitrogen content and alkali index, parameters greatly influencing thermal conversion efficiency, can be accurately predicted in dried samples of these species grown under a range of agronomic conditions by partial least square regression of Fourier transform infrared spectra (R(2) values for plots of predicted vs. measured values of 0.938 and 0.937, respectively). We also discuss the prediction of carbon and ash content in these samples and the application of infrared based predictive methods for the breeding improvement of energy grasses.

  16. MT and WY Tamarix soil properties influence germination and early growth of three native grass species

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    As a riparian invader, Tamarix spp. often leads to native species (e.g., plains cottonwood and willows, grasses) decline and lower habitat quality. Since Tamarix excretes excess salt and has high salt tolerance, negative soil feedback via high soil salinity may negatively affect native plants. Howev...

  17. Three new species of eriophyoid mites from grass hosts in Croatia

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Three new species of grass-feeding eriophyid mites are described from Croatia: Acaralox croatiae n. sp., inhabiting purple moorgrass, Molinia coerulea (L.) Moench; Aculodes festucae n. sp., inhabiting tall fescue, Festuca arundinacea Schreb.; and Aculodes sylvatici n. sp., inhabiting false brome, Br...

  18. Growth and ion accumulation responses of four grass species to salinity

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    In plants, tolerance to saline environments can be achieved either through ion inclusion or ion exclusion. This greenhouse study measured shoot sodium (Na+), potassium (K+), and calcium (Ca2+) responses in four perennial grass species (tall wheatgrass, Nuttall's alkaligrass, creeping foxtail, and s...

  19. Flea and Small Mammal Species Composition in Mixed-Grass Prairies: Implications for the Maintenance of Yersinia pestis.

    PubMed

    Maestas, Lauren P; Britten, Hugh B

    2017-07-01

    Maintenance of sylvatic plague in prairie dogs (Cynomis spp.) was once thought unlikely due to high mortality rates; yet more recent findings indicate that low-level enzootic plague may be maintained in susceptible prairie dog populations. Another hypothesis for the maintenance of sylvatic plague involves small mammals, other than prairie dogs, as an alternative reservoir in the sylvatic plague system. These hypotheses, however, are not mutually exclusive, as both prairie dogs and small mammals could together be driving sylvatic cycles of plague. The concept of a bridging vector has been used to explain the transmission of pathogens from one host species to another. In the case of sylvatic plague, this would require overlap in fleas between small mammals and prairie dogs, and potentially other species such as carnivores. Our goal was to evaluate the level of flea sharing between black-tailed prairie dogs (Cynomis ludovicianus) and other small mammals in a mixed-grass prairie in South Dakota. We investigated the species richness of small mammals and small-mammal fleas in a mixed-grass prairie system and compared findings with previous studies from a short-grass ecosystem in Colorado. Over the summer field seasons 2014-2016 we live-trapped small mammals, collected fleas, and showed differences between both the flea and small mammal composition of the two systems. We also recorded higher densities of deer mice and lower densities of northern grasshopper mice in mixed versus shortgrass prairies. We confirmed, as is the case in shortgrass prairies, a lack of substantial flea species overlap on small mammal hosts and fleas from prairie dogs and their burrows. Moreover this study demonstrates that although small mammals may not play a large part in interepizootic plague cycling in shortgrass prairie ecosystems, their role in mixed-grass prairies requires further evaluation.

  20. Selenium accumulation and selenium-salt co-tolerance in five grass species. [Festuca arundinaceae; Agropyron deserorum; Buchloe dactyloides; Agrostis stolonifera; Cynodon dactylon

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, L.; Huang, Z.; Burau, R.G.

    1987-04-01

    Five grass species including Tall fescue (Festuca arundinaceae Schred), Crested wheatgrass (Agropyron deserorum Fisch), Buffalo grass (Buchlor dactyloides (Nutt.) Engelm.), Seaside bentgrass (Agrostis stolonifera L.) and Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers., Syn.) were examined for selenium and salt tolerance and selenium accumulation under solution culture conditions. Distinct differences in both selenium and salt tolerance were detected among the five species, but no direct association between selenium and salt resistance was found. Tall fescue displayed considerable tolerance under 1 ppm selenium and 100 mM salt treatment. Combined selenium and salt treatment revealed that selenium uptake was increased by the incorporation of salt in the culture solution. However, salt uptake was not significantly affected by the presence of selenium in the culture solution. At moderate toxic levels of selenium, the species with greater tolerance accumulated less selenium than did the less tolerant species.

  1. Species introductions and the phylogenetic and functional structure of California's grasses.

    PubMed

    Sandel, Brody; Tsirogiannis, Constantinos

    2016-02-01

    Many species assemblages represent a nonrandom subset of a larger species pool. When an assemblage tends to contain close evolutionary relatives or species with similar functional traits, it can be described as phylogenetically or functionally clustered. Clustering is often interpreted as evidence for filtering by some combination of environmental and biotic factors. At sufficiently large spatial extents, however, biogeographic barriers can also lead to strong clustering. Here, we suggest that the breakdown of biogeographic barriers associated with human introductions of exotic species can be used as an unintentional experiment to assess their importance in driving phylogenetic and functional structure. An important role of biogeographic barriers would be revealed by a breakdown in clustering, particularly phylogenetic clustering, following species introductions. On the other hand, a role of filtering can be supported by similar patterns of clustering in the native and exotic assemblages along environmental gradients. We test these predictions using the grasses of California, a diverse group including many introduced species. Native grass assemblages in the state are highly clustered with respect to the global grass species pool, both phylogenetically and functionally. Within the state, variation in the strength of clustering is well explained by climatic variables, suggesting an important role for environmental-biotic filtering. Further, subregions within the state with highly clustered native assemblages also contain highly clustered exotic assemblages. Contrary to expectation, though, the introduction of exotic species led to even more strongly clustered assemblages. We conclude that biogeographic barriers have generally not excluded the major grass lineages (e.g., tribes) from the state and likely act only on finer taxonomic scales (for example, excluding particular genera). Our approach should prove broadly applicable and contribute to improved understanding

  2. Distribution of infective gastrointestinal helminth larvae in tropical erect grass under different feeding systems for lambs.

    PubMed

    Tontini, Jalise Fabíola; Poli, Cesar Henrique Espírito Candal; Bremm, Carolina; de Castro, Juliane Machado; Fajardo, Neuza Maria; Sarout, Bruna Nunes Marsiglio; Castilhos, Zélia Maria de Souza

    2015-08-01

    This study examined tropical pasture contamination dynamics under different feeding systems for finishing lambs. The experiment aimed to evaluate the vertical distribution of gastrointestinal helminth infective larvae (L3) in erect grass subjected to grazing and to assess the parasite load and its impact on lamb performance in three production systems. Three treatments based on Aruana grass (Panicum maximum cv. IZ-5) were as follows: T1, grass only; T2, grass with 1.5% of body weight (BW) nutrient concentrate supplementation; and T3, grass with 2.5% BW concentrate supplementation. The randomized block design had three replicates of three treatments, with six lambs per replicate. L3 were recovered from three pasture strata (upper, middle, and bottom), each representing one third of the sward height, and correlated with microclimatic data. Significant differences (P < 0.05) were observed among treatments in the L3 recovery. Despite different grass heights between treatments and microclimates within the sward, the L3 concentration generally did not differ significantly among the three strata within a treatment (P > 0.05). Pasture microclimate did not correlate with larval recovery. At the end of the experiment, the animal fecal egg count was similar among treatments (P > 0.05). The results indicated that different lamb feeding systems in a tropical erect grassland caused differences in grass height but did not affect the distribution of infective larvae among strata. Larvae were found from the base to the top of the grass sward.

  3. Phenotypic differentiation within a foundation grass species correlates with species richness in a subalpine community.

    PubMed

    Al Hayek, Patrick; Touzard, Blaise; Le Bagousse-Pinguet, Yoann; Michalet, Richard

    2014-10-01

    Few studies have examined consequences of ecotypic differentiation within alpine foundation species for community diversity and their feedbacks for the foundation species' fitness. Additionally, no study has quantified ecotypic differences in competitive effects in the field and in controlled conditions to disentangle genetic from plasticity effects in foundation/subordinate species interactions. We focused on a subalpine community of the French Pyrenees including two phenotypes of a cushion-forming species, Festuca gautieri: tight cushions in dry convex outcrops, and loose cushions (exhibiting high subordinate species richness) in wet concave slopes. We assessed, with field and shadehouse experiments, the genetic vs. plasticity basis of differences in: (1) cushion traits and (2) competitive effects on subordinates, and (3) quantified community feedbacks on foundation species' fitness. We found that trait differences across habitats had both genetic and plasticity bases, with stronger contribution of the latter. Field results showed higher competition within loose than tight phenotypes. In contrast, shadehouse results showed higher competitive ability for tight phenotypes. However, as changes in interactions across habitats were due to environmental effects without changes in cushion effects, we argue that heritable and plastic changes in competitive effects maintain high subordinate species diversity through decreasing competition. We showed high reproduction cost for loose cushions when hosting subordinates highlighting the occurrence of community feedbacks. These results suggest that phenotypic differentiation within foundation species may cascade on subordinate species diversity through heritable and plastic changes in the foundation species' competitive effects, and that community feedbacks may affect foundation species' fitness.

  4. Spectral and spatial variability of undisturbed and disturbed grass under different view and illumination directions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borel-Donohue, Christoph C.; Shivers, Sarah Wells; Conover, Damon

    2017-05-01

    It is well known that disturbed grass covered surfaces show variability with view and illumination conditions. A good example is a grass field in a soccer stadium that shows stripes indicating in which direction the grass was mowed. These spatial variations are due to a complex interplay of spectral characteristics of grass blades, density, their length and orientations. Viewing a grass surface from nadir or near horizontal directions results in observing different components. Views from a vertical direction show more variations due to reflections from the randomly oriented grass blades and their shadows. Views from near horizontal show a mixture of reflected and transmitted light from grass blades. An experiment was performed on a mowed grass surface which had paths of simulated heavy foot traffic laid down in different directions. High spatial resolution hyperspectral data cubes were taken by an imaging spectrometer covering the visible through near infrared over a period of time covering several hours. Ground truth grass reflectance spectra with a hand held spectrometer were obtained of undisturbed and disturbed areas. Close range images were taken of selected areas with a hand held camera which were then used to reconstruct the 3D geometry of the grass using structure-from-motion algorithms. Computer graphics rendering using raytracing of reconstructed and procedurally created grass surfaces were used to compute BRDF models. In this paper, we discuss differences between observed and simulated spectral and spatial variability. Based on the measurements and/or simulations, we derive simple spectral index methods to detect spatial disturbances and apply scattering models.

  5. Field drying rate differences amoung cool-season grasses harvested for hay

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Making high-quality, cool-season grass hay is a challenge, due to the field drying time needed to reach the appropriate moisture content and the high probability of rain in the spring when hay is typically produced. This study was conducted to determine if cool-season grasses with different yield po...

  6. Oxygen isotope fractionations across individual leaf carbohydrates in grass and tree species.

    PubMed

    Lehmann, Marco M; Gamarra, Bruno; Kahmen, Ansgar; Siegwolf, Rolf T W; Saurer, Matthias

    2017-08-01

    Almost no δ(18) O data are available for leaf carbohydrates, leaving a gap in the understanding of the δ(18) O relationship between leaf water and cellulose. We measured δ(18) O values of bulk leaf water (δ(18) OLW ) and individual leaf carbohydrates (e.g. fructose, glucose and sucrose) in grass and tree species and δ(18) O of leaf cellulose in grasses. The grasses were grown under two relative humidity (rH) conditions. Sucrose was generally (18) O-enriched compared with hexoses across all species with an apparent biosynthetic fractionation factor (εbio ) of more than 27‰ relative to δ(18) OLW , which might be explained by isotopic leaf water and sucrose synthesis gradients. δ(18) OLW and δ(18) O values of carbohydrates and cellulose in grasses were strongly related, indicating that the leaf water signal in carbohydrates was transferred to cellulose (εbio  = 25.1‰). Interestingly, damping factor pex px , which reflects oxygen isotope exchange with less enriched water during cellulose synthesis, responded to rH conditions if modelled from δ(18) OLW but not if modelled directly from δ(18) O of individual carbohydrates. We conclude that δ(18) OLW is not always a good substitute for δ(18) O of synthesis water due to isotopic leaf water gradients. Thus, compound-specific δ(18) O analyses of individual carbohydrates are helpful to better constrain (post-)photosynthetic isotope fractionation processes in plants. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  7. Interactive effects of plant-available soil silicon and herbivory on competition between two grass species

    PubMed Central

    Garbuzov, Mihail; Reidinger, Stefan; Hartley, Susan E.

    2011-01-01

    Background and Aims The herbivore defence system of true grasses (Poaceae) is predominantly based on silicon that is taken up from the soil and deposited in the leaves in the form of abrasive phytoliths. Silicon uptake mechanisms can be both passive and active, with the latter suggesting that there is an energetic cost to silicon uptake. This study assessed the effects of plant-available soil silicon and herbivory on the competitive interactions between the grasses Poa annua, a species that has previously been reported to accumulate only small amounts of silicon, and Lolium perenne, a high silicon accumulator. Methods Plants were grown in mono- and mixed cultures under greenhouse conditions. Plant-available soil silicon levels were manipulated by adding silicon to the soil in the form of sodium silicate. Subsets of mixed culture pots were exposed to above-ground herbivory by desert locusts (Schistocerca gregaria). Key Results In the absence of herbivory, silicon addition increased biomass of P. annua but decreased biomass of L. perenne. Silicon addition increased foliar silicon concentrations of both grass species >4-fold. Under low soil-silicon availability the herbivores removed more leaf biomass from L. perenne than from P. annua, whereas under high silicon availability the reverse was true. Consequently, herbivory shifted the competitive balance between the two grass species, with the outcome depending on the availability of soil silicon. Conclusions It is concluded that a complex interplay between herbivore abundance, growth–defence trade-offs and the availability of soil silicon in the grasses' local environment affects the outcome of inter-specific competition, and so has the potential to impact on plant community structure. PMID:21868406

  8. The draft genome of the C3 panicoid grass species Dichanthelium oligosanthes.

    PubMed

    Studer, Anthony J; Schnable, James C; Weissmann, Sarit; Kolbe, Allison R; McKain, Michael R; Shao, Ying; Cousins, Asaph B; Kellogg, Elizabeth A; Brutnell, Thomas P

    2016-10-28

    Comparisons between C3 and C4 grasses often utilize C3 species from the subfamilies Ehrhartoideae or Pooideae and C4 species from the subfamily Panicoideae, two clades that diverged over 50 million years ago. The divergence of the C3 panicoid grass Dichanthelium oligosanthes from the independent C4 lineages represented by Setaria viridis and Sorghum bicolor occurred approximately 15 million years ago, which is significantly more recent than members of the Bambusoideae, Ehrhartoideae, and Pooideae subfamilies. D. oligosanthes is ideally placed within the panicoid clade for comparative studies of C3 and C4 grasses. We report the assembly of the nuclear and chloroplast genomes of D. oligosanthes, from high-throughput short read sequencing data and a comparative transcriptomics analysis of the developing leaf of D. oligosanthes, S. viridis, and S. bicolor. Physiological and anatomical characterizations verified that D. oligosanthes utilizes the C3 pathway for carbon fixation and lacks Kranz anatomy. Expression profiles of transcription factors along developing leaves of D. oligosanthes and S. viridis were compared with previously published data from S. bicolor, Zea mays, and Oryza sativa to identify a small suite of transcription factors that likely acquired functions specifically related to C4 photosynthesis. The phylogenetic location of D. oligosanthes makes it an ideal C3 plant for comparative analysis of C4 evolution in the panicoid grasses. This genome will not only provide a better C3 species for comparisons with C4 panicoid grasses, but also highlights the power of using high-throughput sequencing to address questions in evolutionary biology.

  9. The draft genome of the C3 panicoid grass species Dichanthelium oligosanthes

    DOE PAGES

    Studer, Anthony J.; Schnable, James C.; Weissmann, Sarit; ...

    2016-10-28

    Comparisons between C3 and C4 grasses often utilize C3 species from the subfamilies Ehrhartoideae or Pooideae and C4 species from the subfamily Panicoideae, two clades that diverged over 50 million years ago. The divergence of the C3 panicoid grass Dichanthelium oligosanthes from the independent C4 lineages represented by Setaria viridis and Sorghum bicolor occurred approximately 15 million years ago, which is significantly more recent than members of the Bambusoideae, Ehrhartoideae, and Pooideae subfamilies. D. oligosanthes is ideally placed within the panicoid clade for comparative studies of C3 and C4 grasses. Here, we report the assembly of the nuclear and chloroplastmore » genomes of D. oligosanthes, from high-throughput short read sequencing data and a comparative transcriptomics analysis of the developing leaf of D. oligosanthes, S. viridis, and S. bicolor. Physiological and anatomical characterizations verified that D. oligosanthes utilizes the C3 pathway for carbon fixation and lacks Kranz anatomy. Expression profiles of transcription factors along developing leaves of D. oligosanthes and S. viridis were compared with previously published data from S. bicolor, Zea mays, and Oryza sativa to identify a small suite of transcription factors that likely acquired functions specifically related to C4 photosynthesis. In conclusion, the phylogenetic location of D. oligosanthes makes it an ideal C3 plant for comparative analysis of C4 evolution in the panicoid grasses. This genome will not only provide a better C3 species for comparisons with C4 panicoid grasses, but also highlights the power of using high-throughput sequencing to address questions in evolutionary biology.« less

  10. Defoliation synchronizes aboveground growth of co-occurring C4 grass species.

    PubMed

    Swemmer, Anthony M; Knapp, Alan K

    2008-10-01

    The aboveground net primary productivity (ANPP) of grass communities in grasslands and savannas is primarily determined by precipitation quantity. Recent research, motivated by predictions of changes in the distribution of rainfall events by global climate change models, indicates that ANPP may be affected by rainfall distribution as much as by annual totals. Grazing and community composition are also known to affect grassland ANPP. The manner in which interactions between rainfall distribution, grazing, and community composition affect the relationship between precipitation and ANPP represents a critical knowledge gap. The effects of community composition and grazing on aboveground growth responses to intraseasonal variation in water availability were investigated at seven grassland sites with a nonselective clipping experiment. The aboveground growth of the dominant C4 species at each site was measured at regular intervals for 2-3 growing seasons in the presence or absence of regular defoliation. In the absence of defoliation, there was a general lack of synchrony of intraseasonal growth among co-occurring species. Variation in growth rates was high and was only partially explained by variation in rainfall. Regular defoliation increased growth synchrony at all sites, but changes in growth responses to rainfall varied between sites. These results suggest that community composition will be important in determining ANPP-precipitation relationships under conditions of altered rainfall distribution. However this effect appears to be a result of species responding differently to soil water or other resources rather than to rainfall per se. Grazing may override the effects of community composition by reducing differences in growth patterns between species and has the potential to weaken precipitation controls on ANPP.

  11. Defending the leaf surface: intra- and inter-specific differences in silicon deposition in grasses in response to damage and silicon supply.

    PubMed

    Hartley, Sue E; Fitt, Rob N; McLarnon, Emma L; Wade, Ruth N

    2015-01-01

    Understanding interactions between grasses and their herbivores is central to the conservation of species-rich grasslands and the protection of our most important crops against pests. Grasses employ a range of defenses against their natural enemies; silicon-based defenses have been shown to be one of the most effective. Silicon (Si) is laid down on the leaf surface as spines and other sharp bodies, known as phytoliths, making grasses abrasive and their foliage indigestible to herbivores. Previous studies on Si defenses found that closely related species may have similar levels of Si in the leaves but differ markedly in abrasiveness. Here we show how the number, shape and distribution of Si-rich phytoliths and spines differ within and between different grass species and demonstrate that species also differ in their ability to change the deposition and distribution of these defenses in response to damage or increases in Si supply. Specifically, we tested the response of two genotypes of Festuca arundinacea known to differ in their surface texture and three different grass species (F. ovina, F. rubra, and Deschampsia cespitosa) differing in their abrasiveness to combined manipulation of leaf damage and Si supply. F. arundinacea plants with a harsh leaf surface had higher Si content and more spines on their leaf surface than soft varieties. F. ovina and D. cespitosa plants increased their leaf Si concentration and produced an increase in the number of leaf spines and phytoliths on the leaf surface in response to Si addition. F rubra also increased leaf Si content in response to treatments, particularly in damaged leaves, but did not deposit this in the form of spines or increased densities of phytoliths. We discuss how the form in which grasses deposit Si may affect their anti-herbivore characteristics and consider the ecological and agricultural implications of the differences in allocation to Si-based defenses between grass species.

  12. Defending the leaf surface: intra- and inter-specific differences in silicon deposition in grasses in response to damage and silicon supply

    PubMed Central

    Hartley, Sue E.; Fitt, Rob N.; McLarnon, Emma L.; Wade, Ruth N.

    2015-01-01

    Understanding interactions between grasses and their herbivores is central to the conservation of species-rich grasslands and the protection of our most important crops against pests. Grasses employ a range of defenses against their natural enemies; silicon-based defenses have been shown to be one of the most effective. Silicon (Si) is laid down on the leaf surface as spines and other sharp bodies, known as phytoliths, making grasses abrasive and their foliage indigestible to herbivores. Previous studies on Si defenses found that closely related species may have similar levels of Si in the leaves but differ markedly in abrasiveness. Here we show how the number, shape and distribution of Si-rich phytoliths and spines differ within and between different grass species and demonstrate that species also differ in their ability to change the deposition and distribution of these defenses in response to damage or increases in Si supply. Specifically, we tested the response of two genotypes of Festuca arundinacea known to differ in their surface texture and three different grass species (F. ovina, F. rubra, and Deschampsia cespitosa) differing in their abrasiveness to combined manipulation of leaf damage and Si supply. F. arundinacea plants with a harsh leaf surface had higher Si content and more spines on their leaf surface than soft varieties. F. ovina and D. cespitosa plants increased their leaf Si concentration and produced an increase in the number of leaf spines and phytoliths on the leaf surface in response to Si addition. F rubra also increased leaf Si content in response to treatments, particularly in damaged leaves, but did not deposit this in the form of spines or increased densities of phytoliths. We discuss how the form in which grasses deposit Si may affect their anti-herbivore characteristics and consider the ecological and agricultural implications of the differences in allocation to Si-based defenses between grass species. PMID:25717331

  13. Control of one invasive plant species allows exotic grasses to become dominant in northern Great Plains grasslands

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Larson, D.L.; Larson, J.L.

    2010-01-01

    Decline of leafy spurge (Euphorbia esula) in the northern Great Plains of the US is generally viewed as a success story for biological control, but quality of the vegetation that survived the infestation is key to recovery of ecosystem function. In addition, effects of other invasive species, notably cool-season exotic grasses, must be taken into account. Objectives of this study were (1) to evaluate direction and significance of changes in biomass of native and exotic grasses, forbs, and leafy spurge and in plant species composition following control of leafy spurge by flea beetles and (2) to evaluate the relative effects of leafy spurge and exotic grasses on biomass of native grasses, biomass of forbs, and richness of native species. We monitored species composition (1998-2003 and 2008) and biomass (2000, 2002, 2003 and 2008) of these groups on spurge-infested and noninfested permanent plots at three sites with unbroken prairie sod in North Dakota, USA. We found little evidence, in terms of species richness or biomass of native grasses or forbs, that leafy spurge was being replaced by desirable native species, although desirable as well as weedy and exotic species were characteristic of 2008 vegetation at all three sites. Structural equation models revealed that leafy spurge had temporally intermittent negative effects on forb biomass and species richness, but no effects on native grasses. In contrast, exotic grass had consistently strong, negative effects on native grass biomass, as well as stronger negative effects than leafy spurge on native species richness. Although substantial native plant diversity remains at these sites, exotic grasses pose an important threat to these crucial building blocks of native prairie ecosystems. ?? 2010.

  14. Elevated CO₂ mitigates drought and temperature-induced oxidative stress differently in grasses and legumes.

    PubMed

    AbdElgawad, Hamada; Farfan-Vignolo, Evelyn Roxana; de Vos, Dirk; Asard, Han

    2015-02-01

    Increasing atmospheric CO2 will affect plant growth, including mitigation of stress impact. Such effects vary considerably between species-groups. Grasses (Lolium perenne, Poa pratensis) and legumes (Medicago lupulina, Lotus corniculatus) were subjected to drought, elevated temperature and elevated CO2. Drought inhibited plant growth, photosynthesis and stomatal conductance, and induced osmolytes and antioxidants in all species. In contrast, oxidative damage was more strongly induced in the legumes than in the grasses. Warming generally exacerbated drought effects, whereas elevated CO2 reduced stress impact. In the grasses, photosynthesis and chlorophyll levels were more protected by CO2 than in the legumes. Oxidative stress parameters (lipid peroxidation, H2O2 levels), on the other hand, were generally more reduced in the legumes. This is consistent with changes in molecular antioxidants, which were reduced by elevated CO2 in the grasses, but not in the legumes. Antioxidant enzymes decreased similarly in both species-groups. The ascorbate-glutathione cycle was little affected by drought and CO2. Overall, elevated CO2 reduced drought effects in grasses and legumes, and this mitigation was stronger in the legumes. This is possibly explained by stronger reduction in H2O2 generation (photorespiration and NADPH oxidase), and a higher availability of molecular antioxidants. The grass/legume-specificity was supported by principal component analysis.

  15. Forage yield and quality differences among cool-season grasses

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Rotationally-stocked, perennial cool-season grasses are often utilized at a vegetative stage of maturity. We compared the yield and forage quality of leaves, stems, and total forage of meadow fescue, orchardgrass, quackgrass, reed canarygrass, smooth bromegrass, EF (endophyte-free) and EI (endophyte...

  16. Four new species in Magnaporthaceae from grass roots in New Jersey Pine Barrens.

    PubMed

    Luo, Jing; Walsh, Emily; Zhang, Ning

    2014-01-01

    Based on morphology and DNA sequences of SSU, ITS, LSU, MCM7, RPB1 and TEF1 genes, we describe four new species in Magnaporthaceae that are associated with grass roots collected from New Jersey Pine Barrens. A new genus, Pseudophialophora, is erected to accommodate three species, which is characterized by slow growth on potato dextrose agar, curved conidiogenous cells without a conspicuous collarette at the apex and oblong ellipsoidal conidia. Pseudophialophora eragrostis, P. panicorum and P. schizachyrii are assigned to this genus. A new species of Magnaporthiopsis also is reported and named as M. panicorum. Distinctions between them and phylogenetic relationships with other Magnaporthaceae taxa are discussed.

  17. New chloroplast microsatellite markers suitable for assessing genetic diversity of Lolium perenne and other related grass species

    PubMed Central

    Diekmann, Kerstin; Hodkinson, Trevor R.; Barth, Susanne

    2012-01-01

    Background and Aims Lolium perenne (perennial ryegrass) is the most important forage grass species of temperate regions. We have previously released the chloroplast genome sequence of L. perenne ‘Cashel’. Here nine chloroplast microsatellite markers are published, which were designed based on knowledge about genetically variable regions within the L. perenne chloroplast genome. These markers were successfully used for characterizing the genetic diversity in Lolium and different grass species. Methods Chloroplast genomes of 14 Poaceae taxa were screened for mononucleotide microsatellite repeat regions and primers designed for their amplification from nine loci. The potential of these markers to assess genetic diversity was evaluated on a set of 16 Irish and 15 European L. perenne ecotypes, nine L. perenne cultivars, other Lolium taxa and other grass species. Key Results All analysed Poaceae chloroplast genomes contained more than 200 mononucleotide repeats (chloroplast simple sequence repeats, cpSSRs) of at least 7 bp in length, concentrated mainly in the large single copy region of the genome. Nucleotide composition varied considerably among subfamilies (with Pooideae biased towards poly A repeats). The nine new markers distinguish L. perenne from all non-Lolium taxa. TeaCpSSR28 was able to distinguish between all Lolium species and Lolium multiflorum due to an elongation of an A8 mononucleotide repeat in L. multiflorum. TeaCpSSR31 detected a considerable degree of microsatellite length variation and single nucleotide polymorphism. TeaCpSSR27 revealed variation within some L. perenne accessions due to a 44-bp indel and was hence readily detected by simple agarose gel electrophoresis. Smaller insertion/deletion events or single nucleotide polymorphisms detected by these new markers could be visualized by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis or DNA sequencing, respectively. Conclusions The new markers are a valuable tool for plant breeding companies, seed testing

  18. Five new Pseudophialophora species from grass roots in the oligotrophic pine barrens ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Luo, Jing; Walsh, Emily; Blystone, David; Zhang, Ning

    2015-12-01

    During our recent survey of fungi in the oligotrophic pine barrens ecosystem, five new Pseudophialophora species, Pseudophialophora angusta, P. dichanthii, P. magnispora, P. tarda, and P. whartonensis, were uncovered from the roots of switchgrass (Panicum virgatum) and tapered rosette grass (Dichanthelium acuminatum). The five new fungal species are described based on morphological characteristics and DNA sequences of SSU, ITS, LSU, MCM7, RPB1, and TEF1 genes. The 6-locus phylogeny indicates that Pseudophialophora species form a monophyletic clade in Magnaporthaceae of Magnaporthales. A key for all described species in Pseudophialophora is provided, including these five and three previously published species. Distinctions among the new species and other related species are discussed. The plant-fungal interaction experiment indicates that P. angusta, Pseudophialophora eragrostis, P. magnispora, Pseudophialophora schzachyrii, P. tarda, and P. whartonensis have negative effects on the growth of switchgrass. Runner hyphae were observed from the inoculated switchgrass roots, which are typical structures of root-infecting pathogens.

  19. Cross species selection scans identify components of C4 photosynthesis in the grasses.

    PubMed

    Huang, Pu; Studer, Anthony J; Schnable, James C; Kellogg, Elizabeth A; Brutnell, Thomas P

    2017-01-01

    C4 photosynthesis is perhaps one of the best examples of convergent adaptive evolution with over 25 independent origins in the grasses (Poaceae) alone. The availability of high quality grass genome sequences presents new opportunities to explore the mechanisms underlying this complex trait using evolutionary biology-based approaches. In this study, we performed genome-wide cross-species selection scans in C4 lineages to facilitate discovery of C4 genes. The study was enabled by the well conserved collinearity of grass genomes and the recently sequenced genome of a C3 panicoid grass, Dichanthelium oligosanthes This method, in contrast to previous studies, does not rely on any a priori knowledge of the genes that contribute to biochemical or anatomical innovations associated with C4 photosynthesis. We identified a list of 88 candidate genes that include both known and potentially novel components of the C4 pathway. This set includes the carbon shuttle enzymes pyruvate, phosphate dikinase, phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase and NADP malic enzyme as well as several predicted transporter proteins that likely play an essential role in promoting the flux of metabolites between the bundle sheath and mesophyll cells. Importantly, this approach demonstrates the application of fundamental molecular evolution principles to dissect the genetic basis of a complex photosynthetic adaptation in plants. Furthermore, we demonstrate how the output of the selection scans can be combined with expression data to provide additional power to prioritize candidate gene lists and suggest novel opportunities for pathway engineering.

  20. Links between Genetic Groups, Indole Alkaloid Profiles and Ecology within the Grass-Parasitic Claviceps purpurea Species Complex

    PubMed Central

    Negård, Mariell; Uhlig, Silvio; Kauserud, Håvard; Andersen, Tom; Høiland, Klaus; Vrålstad, Trude

    2015-01-01

    The grass parasitic fungus Claviceps purpurea sensu lato produces sclerotia with toxic indole alkaloids. It constitutes several genetic groups with divergent habitat preferences that recently were delimited into separate proposed species. We aimed to 1) analyze genetic variation of C. purpurea sensu lato in Norway, 2) characterize the associated indole alkaloid profiles, and 3) explore relationships between genetics, alkaloid chemistry and ecology. Approximately 600 sclerotia from 14 different grass species were subjected to various analyses including DNA sequencing and HPLC-MS. Molecular results, supported by chemical and ecological data, revealed one new genetic group (G4) in addition to two of the three known; G1 (C. purpurea sensu stricto) and G2 (C. humidiphila). G3 (C. spartinae) was not found. G4, which was apparently con-specific with the recently described C. arundinis sp. nov, was predominantly found in very wet habitats on Molinia caerulea and infrequently in saline habitats on Leymus arenarius. Its indole-diterpene profile resembled G2, while its ergot alkaloid profile differed from G2 in high amounts of ergosedmam. In contrast to G1, indole-diterpenes were consistently present in G2 and G4. Our study supports and complements the newly proposed species delimitation of the C. purpurea complex, but challenges some species characteristics including host spectrum, habitat preferences and sclerotial floating ability. PMID:25928134

  1. Excreting and non-excreting grasses exhibit different salt resistance strategies

    PubMed Central

    Moinuddin, Muhammad; Gulzar, Salman; Ahmed, Muhammad Zaheer; Gul, Bilquees; Koyro, Hans-Werner; Khan, Muhammad Ajmal

    2014-01-01

    The combination of traits that makes a plant successful under saline conditions varies with the type of plant and its interaction with the environmental conditions. Knowledge about the contribution of these traits towards salt resistance in grasses has great potential for improving the salt resistance of conventional crops. We attempted to identify differential adaptive response patterns of salt-excreting versus non-excreting grasses. More specifically, we studied the growth, osmotic, ionic and nutrient (carbon/nitrogen) relations of two salt-excreting (Aeluropus lagopoides and Sporobolus tremulus) and two non-excreting (Paspalum paspalodes and Paspalidium geminatum) perennial C4 grasses under non-saline and saline (0, 200 and 400 mM NaCl) conditions. Growth and relative growth rate decreased under saline conditions in the order P. geminatum > S. tremulus = A. lagopoides > P. paspalodes. The root-to-shoot biomass allocation was unaffected in salt-excreting grasses, increased in P. paspalodes but decreased in P. geminatum. Salt-excreting grasses had a higher shoot/root Na+ ratio than non-excreting grasses. K+, Ca2+ and Mg2+ homoeostasis remained undisturbed among test grasses possibly through improved ion selectivity with rising substrate salinity. Salt-excreting grasses increased leaf succulence, decreased ψs and xylem pressure potential, and accumulated proline and glycinebetaine with increasing salinity. Higher salt resistance of P. paspalodes could be attributed to lower Na+ uptake, higher nitrogen-use efficiency and higher water-use efficiency among the test species. However, P. geminatum was unable to cope with salt-induced physiological drought. More information is required to adequately document the differential strategies of salt resistance in salt-excreting and non-excreting grasses. PMID:24996428

  2. Green leaf volatiles, fire and nonanoic acid activate MAPkinases in the model grass species Lolium temulentum

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Forage and turf related grasses are utilized in diverse environments where they are routinely subjected to herbicides and exposed to fire and volatiles after cutting, however very little is known concerning the perception or molecular responses to these different stresses or compounds. In the model ...

  3. Temperature and functional traits influence differences in nitrogen uptake capacity between native and invasive grasses.

    PubMed

    Leffler, A Joshua; James, Jeremy J; Monaco, Thomas A

    2013-01-01

    Performance differences between native and exotic invasive plants are often considered static, but invasive grasses may achieve growth advantages in western North America shrublands and steppe under only optimal growing conditions. We examine differences in N uptake and several morphological variables that influence uptake at temperatures between 5 and 25 °C. We contrast two native perennial grasses in western North America: Elymus elymoides and Pseudoroegneria spicata; two invasive annual grasses: Bromus tectorum and Taeniatherum caput-medusae; and one highly selected non-native perennial grass: Agropyron cristatum. The influence of temperature on N uptake is poorly characterized, yet these invasive annual grasses are known to germinate in warm soils in the autumn, and both experience cool soils during the short growing season following snowmelt in the spring. To further explore the influence of temperature on the correlation between morphological variables and N uptake, our data are applied to a previously published path model and one proposed here. Differences in N uptake between native and invasive grasses were small at the lowest temperature, but were large at the highest temperature. At lower temperatures, uptake of N by annuals and perennials was correlated with leaf N and mass. At higher temperatures, uptake by annuals was correlated only with these leaf traits, but uptake by perennials was correlated with these leaf traits as well as root N and mass. Consequently, our results imply that annual grasses face fewer morphological constraints on N uptake than perennial grasses, and annual grasses may gain further advantage in warmer temperature conditions or during more frequent warm periods.

  4. An evaluation of the use of individual grass species in retaining polluted soil and dust particulates in vegetated sustainable drainage devices.

    PubMed

    Charlesworth, S M; Bennett, J; Waite, A

    2016-08-01

    A sustainable means of preventing polluted particulates carried in urban storm water entering rivers, groundwater and lakes is by employing vegetated sustainable drainage system (SUDS) devices, or best management practices to trap or biodegrade them. In the UK, a mixture of grass species is recommended for use in devices such as swales or filter strips. However, there is little evidence in support of the efficiency of the individual grasses or mixtures to deal with such contaminated material. A pot-based pollutant retention study was conducted using processed street dust from central Coventry, UK, as a simulated pollutant to be applied in different quantities to a variety of recommended grasses for vegetated SUDS devices. Analysis was conducted on compost cores, roots and shoots for heavy metals (Cd, Cu, Ni, Pb and Zn). Street dust mainly concentrated in the top compost layer for all grasses with only the finer material migrating down the profile. Analysis of roots indicated little accumulation, with ANOVA statistical tests indicating significant differences in heavy metal concentrations, with less in the compost and more in the shoots. Development of root systems on or near the surface possibly explains increased uptake of heavy metals by some species. Overall Agrostis canina and Poa pratensis showed the greatest accumulations compared to their controls although Agrostis capillaris syn.tenuis and Agrostis stolonifera also demonstrated accumulation potential. On ranking, Agrostis canina and Poa pratensis were highest overall. These rankings will assist in selecting the best grasses to address pollution of the urban environment by contaminated particulates.

  5. Plastome Sequence Determination and Comparative Analysis for Members of the Lolium-Festuca Grass Species Complex

    PubMed Central

    Hand, Melanie L.; Spangenberg, German C.; Forster, John W.; Cogan, Noel O. I.

    2013-01-01

    Chloroplast genome sequences are of broad significance in plant biology, due to frequent use in molecular phylogenetics, comparative genomics, population genetics, and genetic modification studies. The present study used a second-generation sequencing approach to determine and assemble the plastid genomes (plastomes) of four representatives from the agriculturally important Lolium-Festuca species complex of pasture grasses (Lolium multiflorum, Festuca pratensis, Festuca altissima, and Festuca ovina). Total cellular DNA was extracted from either roots or leaves, was sequenced, and the output was filtered for plastome-related reads. A comparison between sources revealed fewer plastome-related reads from root-derived template but an increase in incidental bacterium-derived sequences. Plastome assembly and annotation indicated high levels of sequence identity and a conserved organization and gene content between species. However, frequent deletions within the F. ovina plastome appeared to contribute to a smaller plastid genome size. Comparative analysis with complete plastome sequences from other members of the Poaceae confirmed conservation of most grass-specific features. Detailed analysis of the rbcL–psaI intergenic region, however, revealed a “hot-spot” of variation characterized by independent deletion events. The evolutionary implications of this observation are discussed. The complete plastome sequences are anticipated to provide the basis for potential organelle-specific genetic modification of pasture grasses. PMID:23550121

  6. Glycoproteins are species-specific markers and major IgE reactants in grass pollens.

    PubMed

    Manduzio, Hélène; Fitchette, Anne-Catherine; Hrabina, Maud; Chabre, Henri; Batard, Thierry; Nony, Emmanuel; Faye, Loïc; Moingeon, Philippe; Gomord, Véronique

    2012-02-01

    Grass pollen allergic patients are concomitantly exposed and sensitized to pollens from multiple Pooideae (i.e. common grass) species. As such, they are currently desensitized by allergen-specific immunotherapy using extracts made from mixes of pollens from Anthoxanthum odoratum, Dactylis glomerata, Lolium perenne, Phleum pratense and Poa pratensis. Herein, we demonstrate that species-specific glycoprotein patterns are documented by 1D and 2D electrophoresis and Western blotting analysis, which can be used as an identity test for such pollens. Most allergens are glycoproteins bearing complex N-glycans encompassing β1,2 xylose and α1,3 fucose glycoepitopes. Glycoepitope destruction using periodate oxidation has no impact on seric IgE reactivity in 75% atopic patients (n = 24). The latter have thus no significant IgE responses to carbohydrate-containing epitopes. In contrast, periodate treatment strongly impairs IgE recognition of glycoallergens in 25% of patients tested, demonstrating the presence of carbohydrate-specific IgE in those patients. While the clinical impact of carbohydrate-specific IgE is still a matter of controversy, the presence of these IgE in the serum of many allergic patients illustrates the need for cross-reacting carbohydrate epitope-free recombinant allergens to develop relevant diagnostic tests. These data also support the pertinence of mixing multiple grass pollens to desensitize atopic patients, with the aim to broaden the repertoire of glycoepitopes in the vaccine, thus mimicking natural exposure conditions.

  7. Efficacy of Biosolids in Assisted Phytostabilization of Metalliferous Acidic Sandy Soils with Five Grass Species

    PubMed Central

    Kacprzak, Malgorzata; Grobelak, Anna; Grosser, Anna; Prasad, M. N. V.

    2013-01-01

    The role of sewage sludge as an immobilising agent in the phytostabilization of metal-contaminated soil was evaluated using five grass species viz., Dactylis glomerata L., Festuca arundinacea Schreb., F. rubra L., Lolium perenne L., L. westerwoldicum L. The function of metal immobilization was investigated by monitoring pH, Eh and Cd, Pb, and Zn levels in column experiment over a period of 5-months. Grasses grown on sewage sludge-amendments produced high biomass in comparison to controls. A significant reduction in metal uptake by plants was also observed as a result of sewage sludge application, which was attributed to decreased bioavailability through soil stabilisation. We have observed that the sludge amendment decreased metal bioavailability and concentrations in soil at a depth of 25 cm, in contrast to untreated columns, where metal concentrations in the soil solution were very high. PMID:24912245

  8. Efficacy of biosolids in assisted phytostabilization of metalliferous acidic sandy soils with five grass species.

    PubMed

    Kacprzak, Malgorzata; Grobelak, Anna; Grosser, Anna; Prasad, M N V

    2014-01-01

    The role of sewage sludge as an immobilising agent in the phytostabilization of metal-contaminated soil was evaluated using five grass species viz., Dactylis glomerata L., Festuca arundinacea Schreb., F. rubra L., Lolium perenne L., L. westerwoldicum L. The function of metal immobilization was investigated by monitoring pH, Eh and Cd, Pb, and Zn levels in column experiment over a period of 5-months. Grasses grown on sewage sludge-amendments produced high biomass in comparison to controls. A significant reduction in metal uptake by plants was also observed as a result of sewage sludge application, which was attributed to decreased bioavailability through soil stabilisation. We have observed that the sludge amendment decreased metal bioavailability and concentrations in soil at a depth of 25 cm, in contrast to untreated columns, where metal concentrations in the soil solution were very high.

  9. How do grass species, season and ensiling influence mycotoxin content in forage?

    PubMed

    Skladanka, Jiri; Adam, Vojtech; Dolezal, Petr; Nedelnik, Jan; Kizek, Rene; Linduskova, Hana; Mejia, Jhonny Edison Alba; Nawrath, Adam

    2013-11-12

    Mycotoxins are secondary metabolites produced by fungal species that have harmful effects on mammals. The aim of this study was to assess the content of mycotoxins in fresh-cut material of selected forage grass species both during and at the end of the growing season. We further assessed mycotoxin content in subsequently produced first-cutting silages with respect to the species used in this study: Lolium perenne (cv. Kentaur), Festulolium pabulare (cv. Felina), Festulolium braunii (cv. Perseus), and mixtures of these species with Festuca rubra (cv. Gondolin) or Poa pratensis (Slezanka). The mycotoxins deoxynivalenol, zearalenone and T-2 toxin were mainly detected in the fresh-cut grass material, while fumonisin and aflatoxin contents were below the detection limits. July and October were the most risky periods for mycotoxins to occur. During the cold temperatures in November and December, the occurrence of mycotoxins in fresh-cut material declined. Although June was a period with low incidence of mycotoxins in green silage, contents of deoxynivalenol and zearalenone in silages from the first cutting exceeded by several times those determined in their biomass collected directly from the field. Moreover, we observed that use of preservatives or inoculants did not prevent mycotoxin production.

  10. How Do Grass Species, Season and Ensiling Influence Mycotoxin Content in Forage?

    PubMed Central

    Skladanka, Jiri; Adam, Vojtech; Dolezal, Petr; Nedelnik, Jan; Kizek, Rene; Linduskova, Hana; Alba Mejia, Jhonny Edison; Nawrath, Adam

    2013-01-01

    Mycotoxins are secondary metabolites produced by fungal species that have harmful effects on mammals. The aim of this study was to assess the content of mycotoxins in fresh-cut material of selected forage grass species both during and at the end of the growing season. We further assessed mycotoxin content in subsequently produced first-cutting silages with respect to the species used in this study: Lolium perenne (cv. Kentaur), Festulolium pabulare (cv. Felina), Festulolium braunii (cv. Perseus), and mixtures of these species with Festuca rubra (cv. Gondolin) or Poa pratensis (Slezanka). The mycotoxins deoxynivalenol, zearalenone and T-2 toxin were mainly detected in the fresh-cut grass material, while fumonisin and aflatoxin contents were below the detection limits. July and October were the most risky periods for mycotoxins to occur. During the cold temperatures in November and December, the occurrence of mycotoxins in fresh-cut material declined. Although June was a period with low incidence of mycotoxins in green silage, contents of deoxynivalenol and zearalenone in silages from the first cutting exceeded by several times those determined in their biomass collected directly from the field. Moreover, we observed that use of preservatives or inoculants did not prevent mycotoxin production. PMID:24225645

  11. Silicification in Grasses: Variation between Different Cell Types

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Santosh; Soukup, Milan; Elbaum, Rivka

    2017-01-01

    Plants take up silicon as mono-silicic acid, which is released to soil by the weathering of silicate minerals. Silicic acid can be taken up by plant roots passively or actively, and later it is deposited in its polymerized form as amorphous hydrated silica. Major silica depositions in grasses occur in root endodermis, leaf epidermal cells, and outer epidermal cells of inflorescence bracts. Debates are rife about the mechanism of silica deposition, and two contrasting scenarios are often proposed to explain it. According to the passive mode of silicification, silica deposition is a result of silicic acid condensation due to dehydration, such as during transpirational loss of water from the aboveground organs. In general, silicification and transpiration are positively correlated, and continued silicification is sometimes observed after cell and tissue maturity. The other mode of silicification proposes the involvement of some biological factors, and is based on observations that silicification is not necessarily coupled with transpiration. Here, we review evidence for both mechanisms of silicification, and propose that the deposition mechanism is specific to the cell type. Considering all the cell types together, our conclusion is that grass silica deposition can be divided into three modes: spontaneous cell wall silicification, directed cell wall silicification, and directed paramural silicification in silica cells. PMID:28400787

  12. Preference for different inorganic nitrogen forms among plant functional types and species of the Patagonian steppe.

    PubMed

    Gherardi, Laureano A; Sala, Osvaldo E; Yahdjian, Laura

    2013-11-01

    We have explored species-specific preferences for nitrate (NO3(-)) and ammonium (NH4(+)) as an alternative niche separation in ecosystems where nitrogen (N) is present mostly in inorganic forms. The Patagonian steppe is dominated by shrubs and grasses. Shrubs absorb water and nutrients from deep soil layers, which are poor in N, while grasses have the opposite pattern, absorbing most of their water and nutrients from the upper layers of the soil. We hypothesized that the preferences of shrub and grass for inorganic N forms are different and that the rate of potential N uptake is greater in shrubs than in grasses. To test this hypothesis, we grew individuals of six dominant species in solutions of different NH4(+):NO3(-) concentration ratios. Nitrate uptake was found to be higher in shrubs, while ammonium uptake was similar between plant functional types. The NH4(+):NO3(-) uptake ratio was significantly lower for shrubs than grasses. Shrubs, which under field conditions have deeper rooting systems than grasses, showed a higher N absorption capacity than grasses and a preference for the more mobile N form, nitrate. Grasses, which had lower N uptake rates than shrubs, preferred ammonium over nitrate. These complementary patterns between grasses and shrubs suggest a more thorough exploitation of resources by diverse ecosystems than those dominated by just one functional type. The loss of one plant functional group or a significant change in its abundance would therefore represent a reduction in resource use efficiency and ecosystem functioning.

  13. The effect of rodent seed predation on four species of California annual grasses.

    PubMed

    Borchert, M I; Jain, S K

    1978-01-01

    The effect of seed predation by Microtus californicus and Mus musculus on plant numbers of four species of California annual grasses was investigated for one year period on a grassland near Davis, California. In winter, mice utilized dead star thistle plants for cover when grasses in open areas were short, but moved into open areas when grass grew tall in spring.Using exclosures and plots sown with known quantities of seed, it was estimated that a mouse population (approximate density 120/acre) consumed 75% of Avena fatua seed, 44% of Hordeum leporinum seed, and 37% of Bromus diandrus seed. Mice showed a strong preference for Avena seed.Plant numbers of Avena and Hordeum were reduced by 62% and 30%, respectively. Hordeum, Lolium, and to a lesser extent, Bromus responded to a competitive release from Avena by increases in plant size and reproductive output. In addition, seed predation markedly increased seed to adult plant survivorship of Avena, Hordeum, and Bromus.Vertebrate seed predation is discussed as a potentially important factor in the yearly patterns of plant population regulation in California annual grasslands.

  14. Soil modification by invasive plants: Effects on native and invasive species of mixed-grass prairies

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Jordan, N.R.; Larson, D.L.; Huerd, S.C.

    2008-01-01

    Invasive plants are capable of modifying attributes of soil to facilitate further invasion by conspecifics and other invasive species. We assessed this capability in three important plant invaders of grasslands in the Great Plains region of North America: leafy spurge (Euphorbia esula), smooth brome (Bromus inermis) and crested wheatgrass (Agropyron cristatum). In a glasshouse, these three invasives or a group of native species were grown separately through three cycles of growth and soil conditioning in both steam-pasteurized and non-pasteurized soils, after which we assessed seedling growth in these soils. Two of the three invasive species, Bromus and Agropyron, exhibited significant self-facilitation via soil modification. Bromus and Agropyron also had significant facilitative effects on other invasives via soil modification, while Euphorbia had significant antagonistic effects on the other invasives. Both Agropyron and Euphorbia consistently suppressed growth of two of three native forbs, while three native grasses were generally less affected. Almost all intra- and interspecific effects of invasive soil conditioning were dependent upon presence of soil biota from field sites where these species were successful invaders. Overall, these results suggest that that invasive modification of soil microbiota can facilitate plant invasion directly or via 'cross-facilitation' of other invasive species, and moreover has potential to impede restoration of native communities after removal of an invasive species. However, certain native species that are relatively insensitive to altered soil biota (as we observed in the case of the forb Linum lewisii and the native grasses), may be valuable as 'nurse'species in restoration efforts. ?? 2007 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

  15. Predicting species' tolerance to salinity and alkalinity using distribution data and geochemical modelling: a case study using Australian grasses.

    PubMed

    Saslis-Lagoudakis, C Haris; Hua, Xia; Bui, Elisabeth; Moray, Camile; Bromham, Lindell

    2015-02-01

    Salt tolerance has evolved many times independently in different plant groups. One possible explanation for this pattern is that it builds upon a general suite of stress-tolerance traits. If this is the case, then we might expect a correlation between salt tolerance and other tolerances to different environmental stresses. This association has been hypothesized for salt and alkalinity tolerance. However, a major limitation in investigating large-scale patterns of these tolerances is that lists of known tolerant species are incomplete. This study explores whether species' salt and alkalinity tolerance can be predicted using geochemical modelling for Australian grasses. The correlation between taxa found in conditions of high predicted salinity and alkalinity is then assessed. Extensive occurrence data for Australian grasses is used together with geochemical modelling to predict values of pH and electrical conductivity to which species are exposed in their natural distributions. Using parametric and phylogeny-corrected tests, the geochemical predictions are evaluated using a list of known halophytes as a control, and it is determined whether taxa that occur in conditions of high predicted salinity are also found in conditions of high predicted alkalinity. It is shown that genera containing known halophytes have higher predicted salinity conditions than those not containing known halophytes. Additionally, taxa occurring in high predicted salinity tend to also occur in high predicted alkalinity. Geochemical modelling using species' occurrence data is a potentially useful approach to predict species' relative natural tolerance to challenging environmental conditions. The findings also demonstrate a correlation between salinity tolerance and alkalinity tolerance. Further investigations can consider the phylogenetic distribution of specific traits involved in these ecophysiological strategies, ideally by incorporating more complete, finer-scale geochemical information, as

  16. Factors associated with plant species richness in a coastal tall-grass prairie

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Grace, J.B.; Allain, L.; Allen, C.

    2000-01-01

    In this study we examine the factors associated with variations in species richness within a remnant tall-grass prairie in order to gain insight into the relative importance of controlling variables. The study area was a small, isolated prairie surrounded by wetlands and located within the coastal prairie region, which occurs along the northwestern Gulf of Mexico coastal plain. Samples were taken along three transects that spanned the prairie. Parameters measured included micro-elevation, soil characteristics, indications of recent disturbance, above-ground biomass (including litter), light penetration through the plant canopy, and species richness. Species richness was found to correlate with micro-elevation, certain soil parameters, and light penetration through the canopy, but not with above-ground biomass. Structural equation analysis was used to assess the direct and indirect effects of micro-elevation, soil properties, disturbance, and indicators of plant abundance on species richness. The results of this analysis showed that observed variations in species richness were primarily associated with variations in environmental effects (from soil and microtopography) and were largely unrelated to variations in measures of plant abundance (biomass and light penetration). These findings suggest that observed variations in species richness in this system primarily resulted from environmental effects on the species pool. These results fit with a growing body of information that suggests that environmental effects on species richness are of widespread importance.

  17. Grass pollen allergens globally: the contribution of subtropical grasses to burden of allergic respiratory diseases.

    PubMed

    Davies, J M

    2014-06-01

    Grass pollens of the temperate (Pooideae) subfamily and subtropical subfamilies of grasses are major aeroallergen sources worldwide. The subtropical Chloridoideae (e.g. Cynodon dactylon; Bermuda grass) and Panicoideae (e.g. Paspalum notatum; Bahia grass) species are abundant in parts of Africa, India, Asia, Australia and the Americas, where a large and increasing proportion of the world's population abide. These grasses are phylogenetically and ecologically distinct from temperate grasses. With the advent of global warming, it is conceivable that the geographic distribution of subtropical grasses and the contribution of their pollen to the burden of allergic rhinitis and asthma will increase. This review aims to provide a comprehensive synthesis of the current global knowledge of (i) regional variation in allergic sensitivity to subtropical grass pollens, (ii) molecular allergenic components of subtropical grass pollens and (iii) allergic responses to subtropical grass pollen allergens in relevant populations. Patients from subtropical regions of the world show higher allergic sensitivity to grass pollens of Chloridoideae and Panicoideae grasses, than to temperate grass pollens. The group 1 allergens are amongst the allergen components of subtropical grass pollens, but the group 5 allergens, by which temperate grass pollen extracts are standardized for allergen content, appear to be absent from both subfamilies of subtropical grasses. Whilst there are shared allergenic components and antigenic determinants, there are additional clinically relevant subfamily-specific differences, at T- and B-cell levels, between pollen allergens of subtropical and temperate grasses. Differential immune recognition of subtropical grass pollens is likely to impact upon the efficacy of allergen immunotherapy of patients who are primarily sensitized to subtropical grass pollens. The literature reviewed herein highlights the clinical need to standardize allergen preparations for both

  18. Drag coefficient and plant form response to wind speed in three plant species: Burning Bush (Euonymus alatus), Colorado Blue Spruce (Picea pungens glauca.), and Fountain Grass (Pennisetum setaceum)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gillies, J. A.; Nickling, W. G.; King, J.

    2002-12-01

    Whole-plant drag coefficients (Cd) for three plant species: Burning Bush (Euonymus alatus), Colorado Blue Spruce (Picea pungens glauca.), and Fountain Grass (Pennisetum setaceum) in five different porosity configurations were developed from force versus wind speed data collected with a force balance in a recirculating wind tunnel. The average Cd for the Burning Bush, Colorado Spruce, and Fountain Grass in their untrimmed forms were 0.42 (±0.03), 0.39 (±0.04), and 0.34 (±0.06), respectively. Drag curves (Cd versus flow Reynolds number (Re) function) for the Burning Bush and Colorado Spruce were found to exhibit, for the lower porosity configurations, a rise to a maximum around flow Reynolds numbers (Re = ρuhh/ν) of 2 × 105. Fountain Grass Cd was shown to be dependent upon Re to values >5 × 105. The Burning Bush and Colorado Spruce plants reduced their drag, upon reaching their maxima, by decreasing their frontal area and increasing their porosity. Maximum Cd for these plants occurred at optical porosities of ˜0.20. The Fountain Grass reduced drag at high Re by decreasing frontal area and porosity. The mechanism of drag reduction in Fountain Grass was continual reconfiguration to a more aerodynamic form as evidenced by continual reduction of Cd with Re.

  19. Dry matter yields and quality of forages derived from grass species and organic production methods (year 111).

    PubMed

    Pholsen, S; Rodchum, P; Higgs, D E B

    2014-07-01

    This third year work was carried on at Khon Kaen University during the 2008-2009 to investigate dry matter yields of grass, grass plus legumes, grown on Korat soil series (Oxic Paleustults). The experiment consisted of twelve-treatment combinations of a 3x4 factorial arranged in a Randomized Complete Block Design (RCBD) with four replications. The results showed that Dry Matter Yields (DMY) of Ruzi and Guinea grass were similar with mean values of 6,585 and 6,130 kg ha(-1) whilst Napier gave the lowest (884 kg ha(-1)). With grass plus legume, grass species and production methods gave highly significant dry matter yields where Guinea and Ruzi gave dry matter yields of 7,165 and 7,181 kg ha(-1), respectively and Napier was the least (2,790 kg ha(-1)). The production methods with the use of cattle manure gave the highest DMY (grass alone) of 10,267 kg ha(-1) followed by Wynn and Verano with values of 6,064 and 3,623 kg ha(-1), respectively. Guinea plus cattle manure gave the highest DMY of 14,599 kg ha(-1) whilst Ruzi gave 12,977 kg ha(-1). Guinea plus Wynn gave DMY of 7,082 kg ha(-1). Ruzi plus Verano gave DMY of 6,501 kg ha(-1). Forage qualities of crude protein were highest with those grown with grass plus legumes. Some prospects in improving production were discussed.

  20. Screening of Balansia epichloe-infected grass species for in situ ergot alkaloids using laser ablation electrospray ionization-mass spectrometry

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The Balansia are clavicipitaceous symbiotic species associated with various species of tropical grasses. Laboratory culture procedures established that the Balansia species are often conspecific with grasses in tall fescue pastures that produced ergot alkaloids. However, any effects of hosts on the...

  1. Expansion of a globally pervasive grass occurs without substantial trait differences between home and away populations.

    PubMed

    Leifso, A; MacDougall, A S; Husband, B; Hierro, J L; Köchy, M; Pärtel, M; Peltzer, D A

    2012-12-01

    The global expansion of species beyond their ancestral ranges can derive from mechanisms that are trait-based (e.g., post-establishment evolved differences compared to home populations) or circumstantial (e.g., propagule pressure, with no trait-based differences). These mechanisms can be difficult to distinguish following establishment, but each makes unique predictions regarding trait similarity between ancestral ('home') and introduced ('away') populations. Here, we tested for trait-based population differences across four continents for the globally distributed grass Dactylis glomerata, to assess the possible role of trait evolution in its worldwide expansion. We used a common-environment glasshouse experiment to quantify trait differences among home and away populations, and the potential relevance of these differences for competitive interactions. Few significant trait differences were found among continents, suggesting minimal change during global expansion. All populations were polyploids, with similar foliar carbon:nitrogen ratios (a proxy for defense), chlorophyll content, and biomass. Emergence time and growth rate favored home populations, resulting in their competitive superiority over away populations. Small but significant trait differences among away populations suggest different introductory histories or local adaptive responses following establishment. In summary, the worldwide distribution of this species appears to have arisen from its pre-adapted traits promoting growth, and its repeated introduction with cultivation and intense propagule pressure. Global expansion can thus occur without substantial shifts in growth, reproduction, or defense. Rather than focusing strictly on the invader, invasion success may also derive from the traits found (or lacking) in the recipient community and from environmental context including human disturbance.

  2. Adverse reactions to immunotherapy are associated with different patterns of sensitization to grass allergens.

    PubMed

    Sastre, J; Rodríguez, F; Campo, P; Laffond, E; Marín, A; Alonso, M D

    2015-05-01

    The aim of the study was to investigate whether adverse drug reactions (ADRs) during immunotherapy with a grass extract (AVANZ® Phleum, ALK-Abelló) are related to the different patterns of sensitization of patients to grass allergens. A total of 192 patients with rhinitis and/or asthma sensitized to grass pollen received a 4-week updosing with five injections. ADRs were evaluated following EAACI guidelines. A total of 432 ADRs in 133 (69%) patients were recorded, 64% local and 31% systemic. There was a significant association between the number of grass allergens that sensitized the patients and the total number of ADRs (P = 0.004) occurred locally (P = 0.003) and systemically (P = 0.01). Sensitization to Phl p1 + Phl p5 or Phl p1 + Phl p5 + Phl p12 was significantly associated with a higher frequency of local or systemic reactions (P = 0.001, both). Different patterns of sensitization to grass allergens may potentially be considered a risk marker to the development of ADRs to immunotherapy. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons A/S. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  3. Influence of different chemical pretreatments of elephant grass (Pennisetum purpureum, Schum.) used as a substrate for cellulase and xylanase production in submerged cultivation.

    PubMed

    Menegol, Daiane; Scholl, Angélica Luisi; Dillon, Aldo José Pinheiro; Camassola, Marli

    2016-09-01

    This study evaluated the potential use of elephant grass biomass, a highly productive species, for cellulase and xylanase production by the cellulolytic mutant Penicillium echinulatum 9A02S1 in submerged cultivation, using untreated biomass, biomass pretreated with different concentrations of NaOH, H2SO4 or NH4OH, or biomass pretreated with H2O at 121 °C. For filter paper activity, all cultivation carried out with pretreated elephant grass under the evaluated conditions showed superior activity when compared with the control (untreated elephant grass). The activities of endoglucanases and β-glucosidases were higher in the cultivation prepared from pretreated samples than the control made with cellulose (Celuflok(®)). Without pretreatment, elephant grass can be used for xylanase production, enabling similar activities to those obtained in the cultivation with cellulose, reducing the enzyme production cost. These results indicate that the pretreatment of elephant grass, especially when pretreated with H2SO4, may be used as a partial or total replacement for cellulose to cellulase production, and untreated elephant grass may be used for xylanase production.

  4. Effects of feeding dairy cows different legume-grass silages on milk phytoestrogen concentration.

    PubMed

    Höjer, A; Adler, S; Purup, S; Hansen-Møller, J; Martinsson, K; Steinshamn, H; Gustavsson, A-M

    2012-08-01

    Phytoestrogens are hormone-like substances in plants that can substantially influence human health (positively or negatively), and when fed to dairy cows are partly transferred to their milk. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of varying the botanical composition and regrowth interval of legume-grass silage on phytoestrogen intake and milk phytoestrogen concentrations. In one experiment, 15 Swedish Red dairy cows were fed 2- or 3-cut red clover-grass silage, or 2-cut birdsfoot trefoil-grass silage. In a second experiment, 16 Norwegian Red dairy cows were fed short-term ley silage with red clover or long-term ley silage with white clover, and the effects of supplementation with α-tocopherol were also tested. High concentrations of formononetin and biochanin A were found in all silage mixtures with red clover. The milk concentration of equol was highest for cows on the 2-cut red clover-grass silage diet (1,494 μg/kg of milk). Because of the metabolism of biochanin A, genistein, and prunetin, their concentrations in milk and the apparent recovery were low. Coumestrol was detected in only short-term and long-term ley silage mixtures, and its milk concentration was low. Concentrations of secoisolariciresinol and matairesinol were higher in 2-cut birdsfoot trefoil-grass and long-term ley silage mixtures, those with legume species other than red clover, and the highest grass proportions. The 2-cut birdsfoot trefoil-grass silage diet also resulted in higher enterolactone concentration than the other diets (226 μg/kg of milk). Lengthening the regrowth interval increased the intake of secoisolariciresinol and decreased the recovery of lignans. Feeding long-term ley silage resulted in higher milk lignan concentrations but lower milk isoflavone concentrations than feeding short-term ley silage. The apparent recovery of all phytoestrogens except prunetin was highest on the 2-cut birdsfoot trefoil-grass silage diet. No effect of α-tocopherol supplementation

  5. Persistence of biological nitrogen fixation in high latitude grass-clover grasslands under different management practices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tzanakakis, Vasileios; Sturite, Ievina; Dörsch, Peter

    2016-04-01

    Biological nitrogen fixation (BNF) can substantially contribute to N supply in permanent grasslands, improving N yield and forage quality, while reducing inorganic N inputs. Among the factors critical to the performance of BNF in grass-legume mixtures are selected grass and legume species, proportion of legumes, the soil-climatic conditions, in particular winter conditions, and management practices (e.g. fertilization and compaction). In high latitude grasslands, low temperatures can reduce the performance of BNF by hampering the legumés growth and by suppressing N2 fixation. Estimation of BNF in field experiments is not straightforward. Different methods have been developed providing different results. In the present study, we evaluated the performance of BNF, in a newly established field experiment in North Norway over four years. The grassland consisted of white clover (Trifolium repens L.) and red clover (Trifolium pretense L.) sawn in three proportions (0, 15 and 30% in total) together with timothy (Pheum pretense L.) and meadow fescue (Festuca pratensis L.). Three levels of compaction were applied each year (no tractor, light tractor, heavy tractor) together with two different N rates (110 kg N/ha as cattle slurry or 170 kg N/ha as cattle slurry and inorganic N fertilizer). We applied two different methods, the 15N natural abundance and the difference method, to estimate BNF in the first harvest of each year. Overall, the difference method overestimated BNF relative to the 15N natural abundance method. BNF in the first harvest was compared to winter survival of red and white clover plants, which decreased with increasing age of the grassland. However, winter conditions did not seem to affect the grassland's ability to fix N in spring. The fraction of N derived from the atmosphere (NdfA) in white and red clover was close to 100% in each spring, indicating no suppression of BNF. BNF increased the total N yield of the grasslands by up to 75%, mainly due to high

  6. Soil Microorganisms Alleviate the Allelochemical Effects of a Thyme Monoterpene on the Performance of an Associated Grass Species

    PubMed Central

    Ehlers, Bodil K.

    2011-01-01

    Background Plant allelochemicals released into the soil can significantly impact the performance of associated plant species thereby affecting their competitive ability. Soil microbes can potentially affect the interaction between plant and plant chemicals by degrading the allelochemicals. However, most often plant-plant chemical interactions are studied using filter paper bioassays examining the pair-wise interaction between a plant and a plant chemical, not taking into account the potential role of soil microorganisms. Methodology/Principal findings To explore if the allelopathic effects on a grass by the common thyme monoterpene “carvacrol” are affected by soil microorganisms. Seedlings of the grass Agrostis capillaris originating from 3 different thyme sites were raised in the greenhouse. Seedlings were grown under four different soil treatments in a 2*2 fully factorial experiment. The monoterpene carvacrol was either added to standard greenhouse soil or left out, and soil was either sterilized (no soil microorganisms) or not (soil microorganisms present in soil). The presence of carvacrol in the soil strongly increased mortality of Agrostis plants, and this increase was highest on sterile soil. Plant biomass was reduced on soil amended with carvacrol, but only when the soil was also sterilized. Plants originating from sites where thyme produces essential oils containing mostly carvacrol had higher survival on soil treated with that monoterpene than plants originating from a site where thyme produced different types of terpenes, suggesting an adaptive response to the locally occurring terpene. Conclusions/Significance The study shows that presence of soil microorganisms can alleviate the negative effect of a common thyme monoterpene on the performance of an associated plant species, emphasizing the role of soil microbes in modulating plant-plant chemical interactions. PMID:22125596

  7. Soil microorganisms alleviate the allelochemical effects of a thyme monoterpene on the performance of an associated grass species.

    PubMed

    Ehlers, Bodil K

    2011-01-01

    Plant allelochemicals released into the soil can significantly impact the performance of associated plant species thereby affecting their competitive ability. Soil microbes can potentially affect the interaction between plant and plant chemicals by degrading the allelochemicals. However, most often plant-plant chemical interactions are studied using filter paper bioassays examining the pair-wise interaction between a plant and a plant chemical, not taking into account the potential role of soil microorganisms. To explore if the allelopathic effects on a grass by the common thyme monoterpene "carvacrol" are affected by soil microorganisms. Seedlings of the grass Agrostis capillaris originating from 3 different thyme sites were raised in the greenhouse. Seedlings were grown under four different soil treatments in a 2*2 fully factorial experiment. The monoterpene carvacrol was either added to standard greenhouse soil or left out, and soil was either sterilized (no soil microorganisms) or not (soil microorganisms present in soil). The presence of carvacrol in the soil strongly increased mortality of Agrostis plants, and this increase was highest on sterile soil. Plant biomass was reduced on soil amended with carvacrol, but only when the soil was also sterilized. Plants originating from sites where thyme produces essential oils containing mostly carvacrol had higher survival on soil treated with that monoterpene than plants originating from a site where thyme produced different types of terpenes, suggesting an adaptive response to the locally occurring terpene. The study shows that presence of soil microorganisms can alleviate the negative effect of a common thyme monoterpene on the performance of an associated plant species, emphasizing the role of soil microbes in modulating plant-plant chemical interactions.

  8. Climate warming and precipitation redistribution modify tree-grass interactions and tree species establishment in a warm-temperate savanna.

    PubMed

    Volder, Astrid; Briske, David D; Tjoelker, Mark G

    2013-03-01

    Savanna tree-grass interactions may be particularly sensitive to climate change. Establishment of two tree canopy dominants, post oak (Quercus stellata) and eastern redcedar (Juniperus virginiana), grown with the dominant C4 perennial grass (Schizachyrium scoparium) in southern oak savanna of the United States were evaluated under four climatic scenarios for 6 years. Tree-grass interactions were examined with and without warming (+1.5 °C) in combination with a long-term mean rainfall treatment and a modified rainfall regime that redistributed 40% of summer rainfall to spring and fall, intensifying summer drought. The aim was to determine: (1) the relative growth response of these species, (2) potential shifts in the balance of tree-grass interactions, and (3) the trajectory of juniper encroachment into savannas, under these anticipated climatic conditions. Precipitation redistribution reduced relative growth rate (RGR) of trees grown with grass. Warming increased growth of J. virginiana and strongly reduced Q. stellata survival. Tiller numbers of S. scoparium plants were unaffected by warming, but the number of reproductive tillers was increasingly suppressed by intensified drought each year. Growth rates of J. virginiana and Q. stellata were suppressed by grass presence early, but in subsequent years were higher when grown with grass. Quercus stellata had overall reduced RGR, but enhanced survival when grown with grass, while survival of J. virginiana remained near 100% in all treatments. Once trees surpassed a threshold height of 1.1 m, both tiller number and survival of S. scoparium plants were drastically reduced by the presence of J. virginiana, but not Q. stellata. Juniperus virginiana was the only savanna dominant in which neither survival nor final aboveground mass were adversely affected by the climate scenario of warming and intensified summer drought. These responses indicate that climate warming and altered precipitation patterns will further

  9. Consequences of Seed Origin and Biological Invasion for Early Establishment in Restoration of a North American Grass Species

    PubMed Central

    Herget, Mollie E.; Hufford, Kristina M.; Mummey, Daniel L.; Shreading, Lauren N.

    2015-01-01

    Local, wild-collected seeds of native plants are recommended for use in ecological restoration to maintain patterns of adaptive variation. However, some environments are so drastically altered by exotic, invasive weeds that original environmental conditions may no longer exist. Under these circumstances, cultivated varieties selected for improved germination and vigor may have a competitive advantage at highly disturbed sites. This study investigated differences in early establishment and seedling performance between wild and cultivated seed sources of the native grass, Poa secunda, both with and without competition from the invasive exotic grass, Bromus tectorum. We measured seedling survival and above-ground biomass at two experimental sites in western Montana, and found that the source of seeds selected for restoration can influence establishment at the restoration site. Cultivars had an overall advantage when compared with local genotypes, supporting evidence of greater vigor among cultivated varieties of native species. This advantage, however, declined rapidly in the presence of B. tectorum and most accessions were not significantly different for growth and survival in competition plots. Only one cultivar had a consistent advantage despite a strong decline in its performance when competing with invasive plants. As a result, cultivated varieties did not meet expectations for greater establishment and persistence relative to local genotypes in the presence of invasive, exotic species. We recommend the use of representative local or regional wild seed sources in restoration to minimize commercial selection, and a mix of individual accessions (wild, or cultivated when necessary) in highly invaded settings to capture vigorous genotypes and increase the odds native plants will establish at restoration sites. PMID:25741702

  10. Consequences of seed origin and biological invasion for early establishment in restoration of a North American grass species.

    PubMed

    Herget, Mollie E; Hufford, Kristina M; Mummey, Daniel L; Shreading, Lauren N

    2015-01-01

    Local, wild-collected seeds of native plants are recommended for use in ecological restoration to maintain patterns of adaptive variation. However, some environments are so drastically altered by exotic, invasive weeds that original environmental conditions may no longer exist. Under these circumstances, cultivated varieties selected for improved germination and vigor may have a competitive advantage at highly disturbed sites. This study investigated differences in early establishment and seedling performance between wild and cultivated seed sources of the native grass, Poa secunda, both with and without competition from the invasive exotic grass, Bromus tectorum. We measured seedling survival and above-ground biomass at two experimental sites in western Montana, and found that the source of seeds selected for restoration can influence establishment at the restoration site. Cultivars had an overall advantage when compared with local genotypes, supporting evidence of greater vigor among cultivated varieties of native species. This advantage, however, declined rapidly in the presence of B. tectorum and most accessions were not significantly different for growth and survival in competition plots. Only one cultivar had a consistent advantage despite a strong decline in its performance when competing with invasive plants. As a result, cultivated varieties did not meet expectations for greater establishment and persistence relative to local genotypes in the presence of invasive, exotic species. We recommend the use of representative local or regional wild seed sources in restoration to minimize commercial selection, and a mix of individual accessions (wild, or cultivated when necessary) in highly invaded settings to capture vigorous genotypes and increase the odds native plants will establish at restoration sites.

  11. Wildfire, climate, and invasive grass interactions negatively impact an indicator species by reshaping sagebrush ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Coates, Peter S; Ricca, Mark A; Prochazka, Brian G; Brooks, Matthew L; Doherty, Kevin E; Kroger, Travis; Blomberg, Erik J; Hagen, Christian A; Casazza, Michael L

    2016-10-25

    Iconic sagebrush ecosystems of the American West are threatened by larger and more frequent wildfires that can kill sagebrush and facilitate invasion by annual grasses, creating a cycle that alters sagebrush ecosystem recovery post disturbance. Thwarting this accelerated grass-fire cycle is at the forefront of current national conservation efforts, yet its impacts on wildlife populations inhabiting these ecosystems have not been quantified rigorously. Within a Bayesian framework, we modeled 30 y of wildfire and climatic effects on population rates of change of a sagebrush-obligate species, the greater sage-grouse, across the Great Basin of western North America. Importantly, our modeling also accounted for variation in sagebrush recovery time post fire as determined by underlying soil properties that influence ecosystem resilience to disturbance and resistance to invasion. Our results demonstrate that the cumulative loss of sagebrush to direct and indirect effects of wildfire has contributed strongly to declining sage-grouse populations over the past 30 y at large spatial scales. Moreover, long-lasting effects from wildfire nullified pulses of sage-grouse population growth that typically follow years of higher precipitation. If wildfire trends continue unabated, model projections indicate sage-grouse populations will be reduced to 43% of their current numbers over the next three decades. Our results provide a timely example of how altered fire regimes are disrupting recovery of sagebrush ecosystems and leading to substantial declines of a widespread indicator species. Accordingly, we present scenario-based stochastic projections to inform conservation actions that may help offset the adverse effects of wildfire on sage-grouse and other wildlife populations.

  12. Identification and characterization of an expansin gene AsEXP1 associated with heat tolerance in C3 Agrostis grass species.

    PubMed

    Xu, Jichen; Tian, Jiang; Belanger, Faith C; Huang, Bingru

    2007-01-01

    Plant tolerance of heat stress involves various changes at physiological and molecular levels. The objective of this study was to examine the expression of a gene encoding expansin protein in relation to heat tolerance in two C(3) grass species and genotypes differing in heat tolerance. Heat-tolerant, thermal Agrostis scabra, adapted to high temperatures in geothermal areas in Yellowstone National Park, was subjected to 20 degrees C (control) or 40 degrees C (heat stress) for 7 d in a growth chamber. Differential display analysis identified that a gene, AsEXP1, encoding an expansin protein, was strongly up-regulated in leaves exposed to heat stress in thermal A. scabra. Virtual northern hybridization and RT-PCR confirmed that AsEXP1 was a heat-inducible gene in leaves. The expression of AsEXP1 was induced at 1 h of plant exposure to heat stress and reached the highest level of expression at 4 h of treatment. A 1.3 kb full-length cDNA of AsEXP1 was isolated, which encodes a 251 amino acid protein. Two ecotypes of thermal A. scabra and 10 genotypes of Agrostis stolonifera (creeping bentgrass), a widely used turfgrass species in cool climatic regions, varying in the level of heat tolerance, were exposed to 40 degrees C for 7 d to examine the level of AsEXP1 expression in relation to heat tolerance. Genetic variation in heat tolerance was evaluated by measuring cell membrane stability, photochemical efficiency, and leaf growth. RT-PCR analysis revealed that the level of AsEXP1 in different genotypes was positively correlated with the level of heat tolerance in both grass species. The results first identified a heat-related expansin gene in grass species and suggest that AsEXP1 may be useful as a molecular marker to select for heat-tolerant grass germplasm.

  13. Draft genome sequences of three Xanthomonas translucens pathovar reference strains (pv. arrhenatheri, pv. poae and pv. phlei) with different specificities for forage grasses.

    PubMed

    Hersemann, Lena; Wibberg, Daniel; Widmer, Franco; Vorhölter, Frank-Jörg; Kölliker, Roland

    2016-01-01

    As causal agents of bacterial wilt in pastures and meadows, bacteria of the species Xanthomonas translucens are a serious issue in forage grass production. So far, only little is known about host-pathogen interactions at the molecular level and the lack of comprehensive genome data impeded targeted breeding strategies towards resistant forage grass cultivars. Here we announce the draft genome sequences of three grass-pathogenic Xanthomonas translucens pathotype strains, i.e. pv. arrhenatheri LMG 727, pv. poae LMG 728 and pv. phlei LMG 730 isolated from Arrhenatherum elatius (L.) P. Beauv. ex J. Presl & C. Presl (Switzerland), Poa trivialis L. (Switzerland) and Phleum pratense L. (Norway), respectively. The genomes of all three strains revealed a non-canonical type III secretion system and a set of 22 type III effectors as common virulence-related traits. Distinct inter-pathovar differences were observed for the lipopolysaccharide biosynthesis gene cluster and the presence of nonribosomal peptide synthetases.

  14. Modeling greenup date of dominant grass species in the Inner Mongolian Grassland using air temperature and precipitation data.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xiaoqiu; Li, Jing; Xu, Lin; Liu, Li; Ding, Deng

    2014-05-01

    This work was undertaken to examine the combined effect of air temperature and precipitation during late winter and early spring on modeling greenup date of grass species in the Inner Mongolian Grassland. We used the traditional thermal time model and developed two revised thermal time models coupling air temperature and precipitation to simulate greenup date of three dominant grass species at six stations from 1983 to 2009. Results show that climatic controls on greenup date of grass species were location-specific. The revised thermal time models coupling air temperature and precipitation show higher simulation parsimony and efficiency than the traditional thermal time model for five of 11 data sets at Bayartuhushuo, Xilinhot and Xianghuangqi, whereas the traditional thermal time model indicates higher simulation parsimony and efficiency than the revised thermal time models coupling air temperature and precipitation for the other six data sets at E'ergunayouqi, Ewenkeqi and Chaharyouyihouqi. The mean root mean square error of the 11 models is 4.9 days. Moreover, the influence of late winter and early spring precipitation on greenup date seems to be stronger at stations with scarce precipitation than at stations with relatively abundant precipitation. From the mechanism perspectives, accumulated late winter and early spring precipitation may play a more important role as the precondition of forcing temperature than as the supplementary condition of forcing temperature in triggering greenup. Our findings suggest that predicting responses of grass phenology to global climate change should consider both thermal and moisture scenarios in some semiarid and arid areas.

  15. Root proteomic responses to heat stress in two Agrostis grass species contrasting in heat tolerance.

    PubMed

    Xu, Chenping; Huang, Bingru

    2008-01-01

    Protein metabolism plays an important role in plant adaptation to heat stress. This study was designed to identify heat-responsive proteins in roots associated with thermotolerance for two C3 grass species contrasting in heat tolerance, thermal Agrostis scabra and heat-sensitive Agrostis stolonifera L. Plants were exposed to 20 degrees C (control), 30 C (moderate heat stress), or 40 degrees C (severe heat stress) in growth chambers. Roots were harvested at 2 d and 10 d after temperature treatment. Proteins were extracted and separated by two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Seventy protein spots were regulated by heat stress in at least one species. Under both moderate and severe heat stress, more proteins were down-regulated than were up-regulated, and thermal A. scabra roots had more up-regulated proteins than A. stolonifera roots. The sequences of 66 differentially expressed protein spots were identified using mass spectrometry. The results suggested that the up-regulation of sucrose synthase, glutathione S-transferase, superoxide dismutase, and heat shock protein Sti (stress-inducible protein) may contribute to the superior root thermotolerance of A. scabra. In addition, phosphoproteomic analysis indicated that two isoforms of fructose-biphosphate aldolase were highly phosphorylated under heat stress, and thermal A. scabra had greater phosphorylation than A. stolonifera, suggesting that the aldolase phosphorylation might be involved in root thermotolerance.

  16. Gibberellin-Stimulation of Rhizome Elongation and Differential GA-Responsive Proteomic Changes in Two Grass Species

    PubMed Central

    Ma, Xiqing; Huang, Bingru

    2016-01-01

    Rapid and extensive rhizome development is a desirable trait for perennial grass growth and adaptation to environmental stresses. The objective of this study was to determine proteomic changes and associated metabolic pathways of gibberellin (GA) -regulation of rhizome elongation in two perennial grass species differing in rhizome development. Plants of a short-rhizome bunch-type tall fescue (TF; Festuca arundinacea; ‘BR’) and an extensive rhizomatous Kentucky bluegrass (KB; Poa pratensis; ‘Baron’) were treated with 10 μM GA3 in hydroponic culture in growth chambers. The average rhizome length in KB was significantly longer than that in TF regardless of GA3 treatment, and increased significantly with GA3 treatment, to a greater extent than that in TF. Comparative proteomic analysis using two-dimensional electrophoresis and mass spectrometry was performed to further investigate proteins and associated metabolic pathways imparting increased rhizome elongation by GA. A total of 37 and 38 differentially expressed proteins in response to GA3 treatment were identified in TF and KB plants, respectively, which were mainly involved in photosynthesis, energy and amino acid metabolism, protein synthesis, defense and cell development processes. Accelerated rhizome elongation in KB by GA could be mainly associated with the increased abundance of proteins involved in energy metabolism (glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase, fructose-bisphosphate aldolase, and ATP synthase), amino acid metabolism (S-adenosylmethionine and adenosylhomocysteinase), protein synthesis (HSP90, elongation factor Tu and eukaryotic translation initiation factor 5A), cell-wall development (cell dividion cycle protein, alpha tubulin-2A and actin), and signal transduction (calreticulin). These proteins could be used as candidate proteins for further analysis of molecular mechanisms controlling rhizome growth. PMID:27446135

  17. Genotyping-by-Sequencing in a Species Complex of Australian Hummock Grasses (Triodia): Methodological Insights and Phylogenetic Resolution

    PubMed Central

    Thiele, Kevin R.; Krauss, Siegfried L.; Barrett, Matthew D.

    2017-01-01

    Next-generation sequencing is becoming increasingly accessible to researchers asking biosystematic questions, but current best practice in both choosing a specific approach and effectively analysing the resulting data set is still being explored. We present a case study for the use of genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) to resolve relationships in a species complex of Australian arid and semi-arid grasses (Triodia R.Br.), highlighting our solutions to methodological challenges in the use of GBS data. We merged overlapping paired-end reads then optimised locus assembly in the program PyRAD to generate GBS data sets for phylogenetic and distance-based analyses. In addition to traditional concatenation analyses in RAxML, we also demonstrate the novel use of summary species tree analyses (taking gene trees as input) with GBS loci. We found that while species tree analyses were relatively robust to variation in PyRAD assembly parameters, our RAxML analyses resulted in well-supported but conflicting topologies under different assembly settings. Despite this conflict, multiple clades in the complex were consistently supported as distinct across analyses. Our GBS data assembly and analyses improve the resolution of taxa and phylogenetic relationships in the Triodia basedowii complex compared to our previous study based on Sanger sequencing of nuclear (ITS/ETS) and chloroplast (rps16-trnK spacer) markers. The genomic results also partly support previous evidence for hybridization between species in the complex. Our methodological insights for analysing GBS data will assist researchers using similar data to resolve phylogenetic relationships within species complexes. PMID:28135342

  18. Genotyping-by-Sequencing in a Species Complex of Australian Hummock Grasses (Triodia): Methodological Insights and Phylogenetic Resolution.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Benjamin M; Thiele, Kevin R; Krauss, Siegfried L; Barrett, Matthew D

    2017-01-01

    Next-generation sequencing is becoming increasingly accessible to researchers asking biosystematic questions, but current best practice in both choosing a specific approach and effectively analysing the resulting data set is still being explored. We present a case study for the use of genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) to resolve relationships in a species complex of Australian arid and semi-arid grasses (Triodia R.Br.), highlighting our solutions to methodological challenges in the use of GBS data. We merged overlapping paired-end reads then optimised locus assembly in the program PyRAD to generate GBS data sets for phylogenetic and distance-based analyses. In addition to traditional concatenation analyses in RAxML, we also demonstrate the novel use of summary species tree analyses (taking gene trees as input) with GBS loci. We found that while species tree analyses were relatively robust to variation in PyRAD assembly parameters, our RAxML analyses resulted in well-supported but conflicting topologies under different assembly settings. Despite this conflict, multiple clades in the complex were consistently supported as distinct across analyses. Our GBS data assembly and analyses improve the resolution of taxa and phylogenetic relationships in the Triodia basedowii complex compared to our previous study based on Sanger sequencing of nuclear (ITS/ETS) and chloroplast (rps16-trnK spacer) markers. The genomic results also partly support previous evidence for hybridization between species in the complex. Our methodological insights for analysing GBS data will assist researchers using similar data to resolve phylogenetic relationships within species complexes.

  19. Native Grasses as a Management Alternative on Vegetated Closure Caps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kwit, Charles; Collins, Beverly

    2008-06-01

    Capped waste sites often are vegetated with commercial turf grasses to increase evapotranspiration and prevent erosion and possible exposure of the barrier. Fertilizer, frequent watering, and mowing may be required to establish the turf grass and prevent invasion by trees and shrubs. Oldfield vegetation of grasses and forbs is a possible sustainable alternative to turf grass communities. To determine if oldfield vegetation can establish on caps, we (1) compared establishment of a dominant oldfield grass and a commercial turf grass under different combinations of new closure cap management: spring or summer planting and presence or absence of amendments to alleviate drought (watering, mulch) or increase soil fertility (fertilizer, lime, a nitrogen-fixing legume); (2) surveyed existing caps to determine if oldfield species establish naturally; and (3) performed a greenhouse experiment to compare growth of two native grasses under low and amended (added water, soil nutrients) conditions. Both the commercial grass and oldfield species established under new cap conditions; fertilizer, water, and mulch improved vegetation establishment in spring or summer, but legumes decreased grass cover. In the greenhouse, both native grasses grew best with amendments; however, substantial stem and root length were obtained with no fertilizer and only once-weekly watering. Existing vegetated caps supported planted grasses and naturally established oldfield species. Overall, the results indicate native grasses can establish on new caps and oldfields can serve as a management model; further work is needed to determine the management strategy to maintain herbaceous vegetation and slow woody species invasion.

  20. Native grasses as a management alternative on vegetated closure caps.

    PubMed

    Kwit, Charles; Collins, Beverly

    2008-06-01

    Capped waste sites often are vegetated with commercial turf grasses to increase evapotranspiration and prevent erosion and possible exposure of the barrier. Fertilizer, frequent watering, and mowing may be required to establish the turf grass and prevent invasion by trees and shrubs. Oldfield vegetation of grasses and forbs is a possible sustainable alternative to turf grass communities. To determine if oldfield vegetation can establish on caps, we (1) compared establishment of a dominant oldfield grass and a commercial turf grass under different combinations of new closure cap management: spring or summer planting and presence or absence of amendments to alleviate drought (watering, mulch) or increase soil fertility (fertilizer, lime, a nitrogen-fixing legume); (2) surveyed existing caps to determine if oldfield species establish naturally; and (3) performed a greenhouse experiment to compare growth of two native grasses under low and amended (added water, soil nutrients) conditions. Both the commercial grass and oldfield species established under new cap conditions; fertilizer, water, and mulch improved vegetation establishment in spring or summer, but legumes decreased grass cover. In the greenhouse, both native grasses grew best with amendments; however, substantial stem and root length were obtained with no fertilizer and only once-weekly watering. Existing vegetated caps supported planted grasses and naturally established oldfield species. Overall, the results indicate native grasses can establish on new caps and oldfields can serve as a management model; further work is needed to determine the management strategy to maintain herbaceous vegetation and slow woody species invasion.

  1. Differences in breeding bird assemblages related to reed canary grass cover cover and forest structure on the Upper Mississippi River

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kirsch, Eileen M.; Gray, Brian R.

    2017-01-01

    Floodplain forest of the Upper Mississippi River provides habitat for an abundant and diverse breeding bird community. However, reed canary grass Phalaris arundinacea invasion is a serious threat to the future condition of this forest. Reed canary grass is a well-known aggressive invader of wetland systems in the northern tier states of the conterminous United States. Aided by altered flow regimes and nutrient inputs from agriculture, reed canary grass has formed dense stands in canopy gaps and forest edges, retarding tree regeneration. We sampled vegetation and breeding birds in Upper Mississippi River floodplain forest edge and interior areas to 1) measure reed canary grass cover and 2) evaluate whether the breeding bird assemblage responded to differences in reed canary grass cover. Reed canary grass was found far into forest interiors, and its cover was similar between interior and edge sites. Bird assemblages differed between areas with more or less reed canary grass cover (.53% cover breakpoint). Common yellowthroat Geothlypis trichas, black-capped chickadee Parus atricapillus, and rose-breasted grosbeak Pheucticus ludovicianus were more common and American redstart Setophaga ruticilla, great crested flycatcher Myiarchus crinitus, and Baltimore oriole Icterus galbula were less common in sites with more reed canary grass cover. Bird diversity and abundance were similar between sites with different reed canary grass cover. A stronger divergence in bird assemblages was associated with ground cover ,15%, resulting from prolonged spring flooding. These sites hosted more prothonotary warbler Protonotaria citrea, but they had reduced bird abundance and diversity compared to other sites. Our results indicate that frequently flooded sites may be important for prothonotary warblers and that bird assemblages shift in response to reed canary grass invasion.

  2. Population Structure in the Model Grass Is Highly Correlated with Flowering Differences across Broad Geographic Areas.

    PubMed

    Tyler, Ludmila; Lee, Scott J; Young, Nelson D; DeIulio, Gregory A; Benavente, Elena; Reagon, Michael; Sysopha, Jessica; Baldini, Riccardo M; Troìa, Angelo; Hazen, Samuel P; Caicedo, Ana L

    2016-07-01

    The small, annual grass (L.) Beauv., a close relative of wheat ( L.) and barley ( L.), is a powerful model system for cereals and bioenergy grasses. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of natural variation can elucidate the genetic basis of complex traits but have been so far limited in by the lack of large numbers of well-characterized and sufficiently diverse accessions. Here, we report on genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) of 84 , seven , and three accessions with diverse geographic origins including Albania, Armenia, Georgia, Italy, Spain, and Turkey. Over 90,000 high-quality single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) distributed across the Bd21 reference genome were identified. Our results confirm the hybrid nature of the genome, which appears as a mosaic of -like and -like sequences. Analysis of more than 50,000 SNPs for the accessions revealed three distinct, genetically defined populations. Surprisingly, these genomic profiles are associated with differences in flowering time rather than with broad geographic origin. High levels of differentiation in loci associated with floral development support the differences in flowering phenology between populations. Genome-wide association studies combining genotypic and phenotypic data also suggest the presence of one or more photoperiodism, circadian clock, and vernalization genes in loci associated with flowering time variation within populations. Our characterization elucidates genes underlying population differences, expands the germplasm resources available for , and illustrates the feasibility and limitations of GWAS in this model grass. Copyright © 2016 Crop Science Society of America.

  3. Subtropical dry forest regeneration in grass-invaded areas of Puerto Rico: understanding why Leucaena leucocephala dominates and native species fail

    Treesearch

    Brett T. Wolfe; S.J. Van Bloem

    2012-01-01

    Throughout the tropics, non-native grasses invade, dominate, and persist in areas where subtropical and tropical dry forests have been highly degraded. In Central America and the Caribbean Islands, forests that regenerate in grass-invaded areas are generally composed of one to a few tree species, usually of the Fabaceae family and often non-native. We investigated the...

  4. Flavor, glucosinolates, and isothiocyanates of nau (Cook's scurvy grass, Lepidium oleraceum) and other rare New Zealand Lepidium species.

    PubMed

    Sansom, Catherine E; Jones, Veronika S; Joyce, Nigel I; Smallfield, Bruce M; Perry, Nigel B; van Klink, John W

    2015-02-18

    The traditionally consumed New Zealand native plant nau, Cook's scurvy grass, Lepidium oleraceum, has a pungent wasabi-like taste, with potential for development as a flavor ingredient. The main glucosinolate in this Brassicaceae was identified by LC-MS and NMR spectroscopy as 3-butenyl glucosinolate (gluconapin, 7-22 mg/g DM in leaves). The leaves were treated to mimic chewing, and the headspace was analyzed by solid-phase microextraction and GC-MS. This showed that 3-butenyl isothiocyanate, with a wasabi-like flavor, was produced by the endogenous myrosinase. Different postharvest treatments were used to create leaf powders as potential flavor products, which were tasted and analyzed for gluconapin and release of 3-butenyl isothiocyanate. A high drying temperature (75 °C) did not give major glucosinolate degradation, but did largely inactivate the myrosinase, resulting in no wasabi-like flavor release. Drying at 45 °C produced more pungent flavor than freeze-drying. Seven other Lepidium species endemic to New Zealand were also analyzed to determine their flavor potential and also whether glucosinolates were taxonomic markers. Six contained mostly gluconapin, but the critically endangered Lepidium banksii had a distinct composition including isopropyl glucosinolate, not detected in the other species.

  5. Selectivity of florasulam in 4 grass species during the seed harvest year.

    PubMed

    Rijckaert, G; Lepiece, D

    2001-01-01

    Results from one year indicated that florasulam (Primus) and its combination with fluorxypyr applied in spring of the seed harvest year, were completely selective in seed crops of 4 grass species; namely Agrostis stolonifera, Festuca rubra rubra, Koeleria macrantha and Lolium multiflorum. Experimental treatments also included a reference product i.e. bentazone + dichlorprop-P and an untreated control; in total 7 treatments were involved. The prime objective of this study was to investigate not only the effect on vegetative crop growth, but also the impact on generative growth. The main topics were: visual phytotoxicity, lodging, seed yield, straw yield, thousand seed weight, germination capacity, cleaning efficiency, harvest index, seed number per unit area and ear density. The reference treatments (bentazone + dichlorprop-P) were insufficiently selective in Koeleria spp. for vegetative parameters and seed yield, and less selective in Festuca spp. during establishment year but without any effect on seed yield. The so-called "non-sitting" seed crops following above treatments in creeping fescue and Italian ryegrass could be attributed to an inhibition effect.

  6. Attenuation of foot pressure during running on four different surfaces: asphalt, concrete, rubber, and natural grass.

    PubMed

    Tessutti, Vitor; Ribeiro, Ana Paula; Trombini-Souza, Francis; Sacco, Isabel C N

    2012-01-01

    The practice of running has consistently increased worldwide, and with it, related lower limb injuries. The type of running surface has been associated with running injury etiology, in addition other factors, such as the relationship between the amount and intensity of training. There is still controversy in the literature regarding the biomechanical effects of different types of running surfaces on foot-floor interaction. The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of running on asphalt, concrete, natural grass, and rubber on in-shoe pressure patterns in adult recreational runners. Forty-seven adult recreational runners ran twice for 40 m on all four different surfaces at 12 ± 5% km · h(-1). Peak pressure, pressure-time integral, and contact time were recorded by Pedar X insoles. Asphalt and concrete were similar for all plantar variables and pressure zones. Running on grass produced peak pressures 9.3% to 16.6% lower (P < 0.001) than the other surfaces in the rearfoot and 4.7% to 12.3% (P < 0.05) lower in the forefoot. The contact time on rubber was greater than on concrete for the rearfoot and midfoot. The behaviour of rubber was similar to that obtained for the rigid surfaces - concrete and asphalt - possibly because of its time of usage (five years). Running on natural grass attenuates in-shoe plantar pressures in recreational runners. If a runner controls the amount and intensity of practice, running on grass may reduce the total stress on the musculoskeletal system compared with the total musculoskeletal stress when running on more rigid surfaces, such as asphalt and concrete.

  7. The value of small habitat islands for the conservation of genetic variability in a steppe grass species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wódkiewicz, Maciej; Dembicz, Iwona; Moysiyenko, Ivan I.

    2016-10-01

    The habitat loss and fragmentation due to agricultural land-conversion affected the steppe throughout its range. In Ukraine, 95% of steppe was destroyed in the last two centuries. Remaining populations are confined to few refuges, like nature reserves, loess ravines, and kurgans (small burial mounds), the latter being often subject to destruction by archeological excavations. Stipa capillata L. is a typical grass species of Eurasian steppes and extrazonal dry grasslands, that was previously used as a model species in studies on steppe ecology. The aim of our research was to assess genetic diversity of S. capillata populations within different types of steppe refuges (loess ravines, biosphere reserve, kurgan) and to evaluate the value of the latter group for the preservation of genetic diversity in the study species. We assessed genetic diversity of 266 individuals from 15 populations (nine from kurgans, three from loess ravines and three from Askania-Nova Biosphere Reserve) with eight Universal Rice Primers (URPs). Studied populations showed high intra-population variability (I: 0.262-0.419, PPB: 52.08-82.64%). Populations from kurgans showed higher genetic differentiation (ΦST = 0.247) than those from loess ravines (ΦST = 0.120) and the biosphere reserve (ΦST = 0.142). Although the diversity metrics were to a small extent lower for populations from kurgans than from larger refugia we conclude that all studied populations of the species still preserve high genetic variability and are valuable for protection. To what extent this pattern holds true under continuous fragmentation in the future must be carefully monitored.

  8. Wildfire, climate, and invasive grass interactions negatively impact an indicator species by reshaping sagebrush ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Coates, Peter S.; Ricca, Mark; Prochazka, Brian; Brooks, Matthew L.; Doherty, Kevin E.; Kroger, Travis; Blomberg, Erik J.; Hagen, Christian A.; Casazza, Michael L.

    2016-01-01

    Iconic sagebrush ecosystems of the American West are threatened by larger and more frequent wildfires that can kill sagebrush and facilitate invasion by annual grasses, creating a cycle that alters sagebrush ecosystem recovery post disturbance. Thwarting this accelerated grass–fire cycle is at the forefront of current national conservation efforts, yet its impacts on wildlife populations inhabiting these ecosystems have not been quantified rigorously. Within a Bayesian framework, we modeled 30 y of wildfire and climatic effects on population rates of change of a sagebrush-obligate species, the greater sage-grouse, across the Great Basin of western North America. Importantly, our modeling also accounted for variation in sagebrush recovery time post fire as determined by underlying soil properties that influence ecosystem resilience to disturbance and resistance to invasion. Our results demonstrate that the cumulative loss of sagebrush to direct and indirect effects of wildfire has contributed strongly to declining sage-grouse populations over the past 30 y at large spatial scales. Moreover, long-lasting effects from wildfire nullified pulses of sage-grouse population growth that typically follow years of higher precipitation. If wildfire trends continue unabated, model projections indicate sage-grouse populations will be reduced to 43% of their current numbers over the next three decades. Our results provide a timely example of how altered fire regimes are disrupting recovery of sagebrush ecosystems and leading to substantial declines of a widespread indicator species. Accordingly, we present scenario-based stochastic projections to inform conservation actions that may help offset the adverse effects of wildfire on sage-grouse and other wildlife populations.

  9. Wildfire, climate, and invasive grass interactions negatively impact an indicator species by reshaping sagebrush ecosystems

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Coates, Peter S.; Ricca, Mark; Prochazka, Brian; Brooks, Matthew L.; Doherty, Kevin E.; Kroger, Travis; Blomberg, Erik J.; Hagen, Christian A.; Casazza, Michael L.

    2016-01-01

    Iconic sagebrush ecosystems of the American West are threatened by larger and more frequent wildfires that can kill sagebrush and facilitate invasion by annual grasses, creating a cycle that alters sagebrush ecosystem recovery post disturbance. Thwarting this accelerated grass–fire cycle is at the forefront of current national conservation efforts, yet its impacts on wildlife populations inhabiting these ecosystems have not been quantified rigorously. Within a Bayesian framework, we modeled 30 y of wildfire and climatic effects on population rates of change of a sagebrush-obligate species, the greater sage-grouse, across the Great Basin of western North America. Importantly, our modeling also accounted for variation in sagebrush recovery time post fire as determined by underlying soil properties that influence ecosystem resilience to disturbance and resistance to invasion. Our results demonstrate that the cumulative loss of sagebrush to direct and indirect effects of wildfire has contributed strongly to declining sage-grouse populations over the past 30 y at large spatial scales. Moreover, long-lasting effects from wildfire nullified pulses of sage-grouse population growth that typically follow years of higher precipitation. If wildfire trends continue unabated, model projections indicate sage-grouse populations will be reduced to 43% of their current numbers over the next three decades. Our results provide a timely example of how altered fire regimes are disrupting recovery of sagebrush ecosystems and leading to substantial declines of a widespread indicator species. Accordingly, we present scenario-based stochastic projections to inform conservation actions that may help offset the adverse effects of wildfire on sage-grouse and other wildlife populations.

  10. Wildfire, climate, and invasive grass interactions negatively impact an indicator species by reshaping sagebrush ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Coates, Peter S.; Ricca, Mark A.; Prochazka, Brian G.; Brooks, Matthew L.; Doherty, Kevin E.; Kroger, Travis; Blomberg, Erik J.; Hagen, Christian A.; Casazza, Michael L.

    2016-01-01

    Iconic sagebrush ecosystems of the American West are threatened by larger and more frequent wildfires that can kill sagebrush and facilitate invasion by annual grasses, creating a cycle that alters sagebrush ecosystem recovery post disturbance. Thwarting this accelerated grass–fire cycle is at the forefront of current national conservation efforts, yet its impacts on wildlife populations inhabiting these ecosystems have not been quantified rigorously. Within a Bayesian framework, we modeled 30 y of wildfire and climatic effects on population rates of change of a sagebrush-obligate species, the greater sage-grouse, across the Great Basin of western North America. Importantly, our modeling also accounted for variation in sagebrush recovery time post fire as determined by underlying soil properties that influence ecosystem resilience to disturbance and resistance to invasion. Our results demonstrate that the cumulative loss of sagebrush to direct and indirect effects of wildfire has contributed strongly to declining sage-grouse populations over the past 30 y at large spatial scales. Moreover, long-lasting effects from wildfire nullified pulses of sage-grouse population growth that typically follow years of higher precipitation. If wildfire trends continue unabated, model projections indicate sage-grouse populations will be reduced to 43% of their current numbers over the next three decades. Our results provide a timely example of how altered fire regimes are disrupting recovery of sagebrush ecosystems and leading to substantial declines of a widespread indicator species. Accordingly, we present scenario-based stochastic projections to inform conservation actions that may help offset the adverse effects of wildfire on sage-grouse and other wildlife populations. PMID:27791084

  11. Status of herbicide technology for control of tree species and to reduce shrub and grass competition

    Treesearch

    Maxwell L., Jr. McCormack

    1977-01-01

    The values of herbicides as silvicultural tools are summarized. Treatments are discussed with reference to chemicals and methods of application as they pertain to control of grass and herbaceous weeds, understory vegetation, and overstory vegetation.

  12. Comparison of intestinal bacterial communities in grass carp, Ctenopharyngodon idellus, from two different habitats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ni, Jiajia; Yu, Yuhe; Zhang, Tanglin; Gao, Lei

    2012-09-01

    The intestinal bacteria of vertebrates form a close relationship with their host. External and internal conditions of the host, including its habitat, affect the intestinal bacterial community. Similarly, the intestinal bacterial community can, in turn, influence the host, particularly with respect to disease resistance. We compared the intestinal bacterial communities of grass carp that were collected from farm-ponds or a lake. We conducted denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis of amplified 16S rRNA genes, from which 66 different operational taxonomic units were identified. Using both the unweighted pair-group method with arithmetic means clustering and principal component analysis ordination, we found that the intestinal bacterial communities from the two groups of pond fish were clustered together and inset into the clusters of wild fish, except for DF-7, and there was no significant correlation between genetic diversity of grass carp and their intestinal bacterial communities (Mantel one-tailed test, R=0.157, P=0.175). Cetobacterium appeared more frequently in the intestine of grass carp collected from pond. A more thorough understanding of the role played by intestinal microbiota on fish health would be of considerable benefit to the aquaculture industry.

  13. Grass species and endophyte effects on survival and development of fall armyworm (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae).

    PubMed

    Braman, S K; Duncan, R R; Engelke, M C; Hanna, W W; Hignight, K; Rush, D

    2002-04-01

    Grass selections including 10 zoysiagrasses, 18 paspalums, 34 Bermuda grasses, tall fescue, creeping red fescue, and perennial ryegrasses with and without endophyte were evaluated for potential resistance to fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda (J. E. Smith), larvae. Laboratory evaluations assessed the degree of antibiosis among >70 grass lines to first-instar fall armvworms. When all parameters measured were considered, the trend in resistance to fall armyworm among endophyte-infected (E+) and endophyte-free (E-) cool season grasses from greatest to least was: 'Dawson' E+ > APR 1234 > 'Dawson' E- > 'Rosalin' E+ > Lp 5425, 'Rosalin' E-, ATF 480 > 'Tulsa' or: E+ slender creeping red fescue > E+ turf- type perennial ryegrass > E- slender creeping red fescue > E+ forage-type perennial ryegrass > E- forage-type perennial ryegrasses, and E+ tall fescue > E- turf-type tall fescue. Among warm season grasses larval weight gain was reduced on all zoysiagrasses. Larval weight gain also was lower on the Bermuda grasses 'Tifsport', 'Tifgreen', 97-4, 97-14, 97-22, 97-28, 97-39, 97-40,97-54, 98-15, 98-30, and 98-45 than when larvae were fed 'Tulsa' tall fescue or the diet control. Only APR1234 and 'Dawson' creeping red fescue reduced larval survival to the same extent that was observed for zoysiagrasses. Survival on Bermuda grasses was least on 97-8. Seashore paspalums were only rarely less susceptible to fall armyworm than tall fescue, although pupal weights were consistently lower on 'Temple 1' and 'Sea Isle 1' paspalums than that on 'Tulsa' tall fescue. Genetic resistance to key grass pests can reduce insecticide use and simplify management of these cultivars.

  14. Distinct retinohypothalamic innervation patterns predict the developmental emergence of species-typical circadian phase preference in nocturnal Norway rats and diurnal nile grass rats.

    PubMed

    Todd, William D; Gall, Andrew J; Weiner, Joshua A; Blumberg, Mark S

    2012-10-01

    How does the brain develop differently to support nocturnality in some mammals, but diurnality in others? To answer this question, one might look to the suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN), which is entrained by light via the retinohypothalamic tract (RHT). However, because the SCN is more active during the day in all mammals studied thus far, it alone cannot determine circadian phase preference. In adult Norway rats (Rattus norvegicus), which are nocturnal, the RHT also projects to the ventral subparaventricular zone (vSPVZ), an adjacent region that expresses an in-phase pattern of SCN-vSPVZ neuronal activity. In contrast, in adult Nile grass rats (Arvicanthis niloticus), which are diurnal, an anti-phase pattern of SCN-vSPVZ neuronal activity is expressed. We hypothesized that these species differences result in part from a weak or absent RHT-to-vSPVZ projection in grass rats. Here, using a developmental comparative approach, we assessed species differences in behavior, hypothalamic activity, and RHT anatomy. We report that a robust retina-to-vSPVZ projection develops in Norway rats around the end of the second postnatal week when nocturnal wakefulness and the in-phase pattern of neuronal activity emerge. In grass rats, however, such a projection does not develop and the emergence of the anti-phase pattern during the second postnatal week is accompanied by increased diurnal wakefulness. When considered within the context of previously published reports on RHT projections in a variety of species, the current findings suggest that how and when the retina connects to the hypothalamus differentially shapes brain and behavior to produce animals that occupy opposing temporal niches.

  15. From the Lab Bench: Differences in annual and perennial grasses in meeting cattle production goals

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    A column was written that provided the advantages and disadvantages of annual warm- and cool-season grasses. Warm-season annual grasses can increase the supply of forage during the summer slump in cool-season perennial grass growth. Utilization of toxic endophyte-infected tall fescue pastures can ...

  16. Discriminating tropical grass ( Cenchrus ciliaris) canopies grown under different nitrogen treatments using spectroradiometry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mutanga, Onisimo; Skidmore, Andrew K.; van Wieren, Sipke

    Techniques for estimating and mapping pasture quality are critical for a better understanding of wildlife and livestock grazing patterns. Nitrogen is one of the most important elements that determine quality in plants. We assessed the potential to discriminate differences in nitrogen concentration using high-resolution reflectance by growing Cenchrus ciliaris grass with different fertilization treatments in a greenhouse. Canopy spectral measurements from each treatment were taken under controlled laboratory conditions within a period of 4 weeks using a GER 3700 spectroradiometer. Results show that there were statistically significant differences in spectral reflectance between treatments within certain wavelength regions—an encouraging result for classifying and mapping grasslands with different levels of nutrients using hyperspectral remote sensing. We further investigated the effect of varying nitrogen supply to a specific absorption feature in the visible between 550 and 750 nm (R 550- 750) using continuum-removed spectra. Results show that the high nitrogen treatment had deeper and wider absorption pits as compared to the low nitrogen treatment as well as the control (no nitrogen), which is important for the prediction of nitrogen in grass canopies. This is a promising result for the remote sensing of canopy chemistry since emphasis can be shifted from the mid-infrared region (which is highly masked by water absorption) to the visible region. Overall, the results provide the possibility to map variation in pasture quality using hyperspectral remote sensing.

  17. The draft genome of the C3 panicoid grass species Dichanthelium oligosanthes

    SciTech Connect

    Studer, Anthony J.; Schnable, James C.; Weissmann, Sarit; Kolbe, Allison R.; McKain, Michael R.; Shao, Ying; Cousins, Asaph B.; Kellogg, Elizabeth A.; Brutnell, Thomas P.

    2016-10-28

    Comparisons between C3 and C4 grasses often utilize C3 species from the subfamilies Ehrhartoideae or Pooideae and C4 species from the subfamily Panicoideae, two clades that diverged over 50 million years ago. The divergence of the C3 panicoid grass Dichanthelium oligosanthes from the independent C4 lineages represented by Setaria viridis and Sorghum bicolor occurred approximately 15 million years ago, which is significantly more recent than members of the Bambusoideae, Ehrhartoideae, and Pooideae subfamilies. D. oligosanthes is ideally placed within the panicoid clade for comparative studies of C3 and C4 grasses. Here, we report the assembly of the nuclear and chloroplast genomes of D. oligosanthes, from high-throughput short read sequencing data and a comparative transcriptomics analysis of the developing leaf of D. oligosanthes, S. viridis, and S. bicolor. Physiological and anatomical characterizations verified that D. oligosanthes utilizes the C3 pathway for carbon fixation and lacks Kranz anatomy. Expression profiles of transcription factors along developing leaves of D. oligosanthes and S. viridis were compared with previously published data from S. bicolor, Zea mays, and Oryza sativa to identify a small suite of transcription factors that likely acquired functions specifically related to C4 photosynthesis. In conclusion, the phylogenetic location of D. oligosanthes makes it an ideal C3 plant for comparative analysis of C4 evolution in the panicoid grasses. This genome will not only provide a better C3 species for comparisons with C4 panicoid grasses, but also highlights the power of using high-throughput sequencing to address questions in evolutionary biology.

  18. Growth and Quality of Cool-Season Perennial Grass Species in the Southern Great Plains

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Annually planted winter wheat is the major cool-season livestock forage enterprise in a large part of the southern Great Plains and is a good complement to warm-season perennials. However, gaps in both fall and spring exist in the system. Cool-season perennial grasses that have origins in the Nort...

  19. Native species regeneration following ungulate exclusion and nonnative grass removal in a remnant Hawaiian dry forest

    Treesearch

    Jarrod M. Thaxton; T. Colleen Cole; Susan Cordell; Robert J. Cabin; Darren R. Sandquist; Creighton M. Litton

    2010-01-01

    Hawaiian lowland dry forests have been reduced by >90% since first human contact. Restoration has focused on protection from fire and ungulates, and removal of invasive grasses as ways to stimulate native forest regeneration. Despite these efforts, natural regeneration of native plants has been infrequent. To assess effects of previous restoration treatments on...

  20. In the shadow of a megalopolis, a new Flexamia from a threatened grass species in the New Jersey Pine Barrens (Hemiptera, Cicadellidae, Deltocephalinae, Paralimnini).

    PubMed

    Hicks, Andrew

    2015-01-01

    A previously unknown species of the North American leafhopper genus Flexamia, Flexamiawhitcombi sp. n., is described from pinebarren smokegrass (Muhlenbergiatorreyana (Schult.) Hitchc.), a state-listed threatened grass in the New Jersey Pine Barrens. The serrata species group, to which it belongs, is redefined and a key to the species of the group is provided. This is the first reported insect association with Muhlenbergiatorreyana.

  1. Attacking invasive grasses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Keeley, Jon E.

    2015-01-01

    In grasslands fire may play a role in the plant invasion process, both by creating disturbances that potentially favour non-native invasions and as a possible tool for controlling alien invasions. Havill et al. (Applied Vegetation Science, 18, 2015, this issue) determine how native and non-native species respond to different fire regimes as a first step in understanding the potential control of invasive grasses.

  2. Automated conserved non-coding sequence (CNS) discovery reveals differences in gene content and promoter evolution among grasses.

    PubMed

    Turco, Gina; Schnable, James C; Pedersen, Brent; Freeling, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Conserved non-coding sequences (CNS) are islands of non-coding sequence that, like protein coding exons, show less divergence in sequence between related species than functionless DNA. Several CNSs have been demonstrated experimentally to function as cis-regulatory regions. However, the specific functions of most CNSs remain unknown. Previous searches for CNS in plants have either anchored on exons and only identified nearby sequences or required years of painstaking manual annotation. Here we present an open source tool that can accurately identify CNSs between any two related species with sequenced genomes, including both those immediately adjacent to exons and distal sequences separated by >12 kb of non-coding sequence. We have used this tool to characterize new motifs, associate CNSs with additional functions, and identify previously undetected genes encoding RNA and protein in the genomes of five grass species. We provide a list of 15,363 orthologous CNSs conserved across all grasses tested. We were also able to identify regulatory sequences present in the common ancestor of grasses that have been lost in one or more extant grass lineages. Lists of orthologous gene pairs and associated CNSs are provided for reference inbred lines of arabidopsis, Japonica rice, foxtail millet, sorghum, brachypodium, and maize.

  3. Effects of Different Soil Amendments on Mixed Heavy Metals Contamination in Vetiver Grass.

    PubMed

    Ng, Chuck Chuan; Boyce, Amru Nasrulhaq; Rahman, Md Motior; Abas, Mhd Radzi

    2016-11-01

    Three different types of low cost soil amendments, namely, EDTA, elemental S and N-fertilizer, were investigated with Vetiver grass, Vetiveria zizanioides (Linn.) Nash growing under highly mixed Cd-Pb contamination conditions. A significant increase (p < 0.05) in Cd and Pb accumulation were recorded in the shoots of all EDTA and N-fertilizer assisted treatments. The accumulation of Cd in 25 mmol EDTA/kg soil and 300 mmol N/kg soil showed relatively higher translocation factor (1.72 and 2.15) and percentage metal efficacy (63.25 % and 68.22 %), respectively, compared to other treatments. However, it was observed that the increased application of elemental S may inhibit the availability of Pb translocation from soil-to-root and root-to-shoot. The study suggests that viable application of 25 mmol EDTA/kg, 300 mmol N/kg and 20 mmol S/kg soil have the potential to be used for soil amendment with Vetiver grass growing under contaminated mixed Cd-Pb soil conditions.

  4. Long-term exposure to elevated CO2 enhances plant community stability by suppressing dominant plant species in a mixed-grass prairie

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zelikova, Tamara Jane; Blumenthal, Dana M.; Williams, David G.; Souza, Lara; LeCain, Daniel R.; Morgan, Jack; Pendall, Elise

    2014-10-01

    Climate controls vegetation distribution across the globe, and some vegetation types are more vulnerable to climate change, whereas others are more resistant. Because resistance and resilience can influence ecosystem stability and determine how communities and ecosystems respond to climate change, we need to evaluate the potential for resistance as we predict future ecosystem function. In a mixed-grass prairie in the northern Great Plains, we used a large field experiment to test the effects of elevated CO2, warming, and summer irrigation on plant community structure and productivity, linking changes in both to stability in plant community composition and biomass production. We show that the independent effects of CO2 and warming on community composition and productivity depend on interannual variation in precipitation and that the effects of elevated CO2 are not limited to water saving because they differ from those of irrigation. We also show that production in this mixed-grass prairie ecosystem is not only relatively resistant to interannual variation in precipitation, but also rendered more stable under elevated CO2 conditions. This increase in production stability is the result of altered community dominance patterns: Community evenness increases as dominant species decrease in biomass under elevated CO2. In many grasslands that serve as rangelands, the economic value of the ecosystem is largely dependent on plant community composition and the relative abundance of key forage species. Thus, our results have implications for how we manage native grasslands in the face of changing climate.

  5. Long-term exposure to elevated CO2 enhances plant community stability by suppressing dominant plant species in a mixed-grass prairie.

    PubMed

    Zelikova, Tamara Jane; Blumenthal, Dana M; Williams, David G; Souza, Lara; LeCain, Daniel R; Morgan, Jack; Pendall, Elise

    2014-10-28

    Climate controls vegetation distribution across the globe, and some vegetation types are more vulnerable to climate change, whereas others are more resistant. Because resistance and resilience can influence ecosystem stability and determine how communities and ecosystems respond to climate change, we need to evaluate the potential for resistance as we predict future ecosystem function. In a mixed-grass prairie in the northern Great Plains, we used a large field experiment to test the effects of elevated CO2, warming, and summer irrigation on plant community structure and productivity, linking changes in both to stability in plant community composition and biomass production. We show that the independent effects of CO2 and warming on community composition and productivity depend on interannual variation in precipitation and that the effects of elevated CO2 are not limited to water saving because they differ from those of irrigation. We also show that production in this mixed-grass prairie ecosystem is not only relatively resistant to interannual variation in precipitation, but also rendered more stable under elevated CO2 conditions. This increase in production stability is the result of altered community dominance patterns: Community evenness increases as dominant species decrease in biomass under elevated CO2. In many grasslands that serve as rangelands, the economic value of the ecosystem is largely dependent on plant community composition and the relative abundance of key forage species. Thus, our results have implications for how we manage native grasslands in the face of changing climate.

  6. The effect of hydraulic lift on organic matter decomposition, soil nitrogen cycling, and nitrogen acquisition by a grass species.

    PubMed

    Armas, Cristina; Kim, John H; Bleby, Timothy M; Jackson, Robert B

    2012-01-01

    Hydraulic lift (HL) is the passive movement of water through plant roots, driven by gradients in water potential. The greater soil-water availability resulting from HL may in principle lead to higher plant nutrient uptake, but the evidence for this hypothesis is not universally supported by current experiments. We grew a grass species common in North America in two-layer pots with three treatments: (1) the lower layer watered, the upper one unwatered (HL), (2) both layers watered (W), and (3) the lower layer watered, the upper one unwatered, but with continuous light 24 h a day to limit HL (no-HL). We inserted ingrowth cores filled with enriched-nitrogen organic matter ((15)N-OM) in the upper layer and tested whether decomposition, mineralization and uptake of (15)N were higher in plants performing HL than in plants without HL. Soils in the upper layer were significantly wetter in the HL treatment than in the no-HL treatment. Decomposition rates were similar in the W and HL treatments and lower in no-HL. On average, the concentration of NH(4)(+)-N in ingrowth cores was highest in the W treatment, and NO(3)(-)-N concentrations were highest in the no-HL treatment, with HL having intermediate values for both, suggesting differential mineralization of organic N among treatments. Aboveground biomass, leaf (15)N contents and the (15)N uptake in aboveground tissues were higher in W and HL than in no-HL, indicating higher nutrient uptake and improved N status of plants performing HL. However, there were no differences in total root nitrogen content or (15)N uptake by roots, indicating that HL affected plant allocation of acquired N to photosynthetic tissues. Our evidence for the role of HL in organic matter decomposition and nutrient cycling suggests that HL could have positive effects on plant nutrient dynamics and nutrient turnover.

  7. Accumulation of seleno-amino acids in legume and grass plant species grown in selenium-laden soils

    SciTech Connect

    Wu, L.; Guo, X.; Banuelos, G.S.

    1997-03-01

    Seleno-amino acid accumulation was studied for two legume and two grass species grown in Selenium (Se)-laden soils. An antagonistic relationship was found between the tissue Se-amino acid concentration and the corresponding sulfur-amino acid concentration. This relationship demonstrates a competitive interaction between Se and sulfate at the amino acid synthesis level. The nonsulfur-containing amino acids were not substantially affected by the increase of tissue Se concentration. Sour clover (Melilotus indica L.) was able to accumulate much greater tissue Se concentration than the other three species. Tissue methionine concentration of sour clover, rabbitfoot grass (Polypogon monspeliensis L.), and tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea Schreb.) was not significantly affected by the increase of tissue selenomethionine concentration, but a highly significant negative correlation was found in alfalfa (Medicago sativa L.). This discrepancy suggests that a less antagonistic effect on sulfur-amino acids under the increase of Se-amino acid analogues in the tissue might be able to minimize Se toxicity to the plant. Both Se-methylselenocysteine (nonprotein amino acid) and selenomethionine (protein amino acid) accumulated in the plants when grown in Se-laden soils. Possible effects of these Se-amino acids accumulated by plants on animal health should be tested before the plants are used for forage supplementation.

  8. Plant species richness at different scales in native and exotic grasslands in Southeastern Arizona

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    McLaughlin, S.P.; Bowers, Janice E.

    2006-01-01

    Species richness in Madrean mixed-grass prairies dominated by native or exotic species in southeastern Arizona was characterized at the community and point scales using ten 1-m2 quadrats nested within each of eight 1000-m2 plots. In the 1000-m2 plots average richness was significantly higher in oak savanna (OS, 121.0 species) than in exotic grassland on mesa tops (EMT, 52.0 species), whereas native grassland on mesa slopes (NMS, 92.5 species) and native grassland on mesa tops (NMT, 77.0 species) did not differ significantly in richness from OS or EMT When richness was partitioned by life form, EMT was notably poorer than other community types in species of perennial grasses, perennial herbs, and summer annuals. In the 1-m2 quadrats, OS (21.2 species), NMS (20.9 species), and NMT (20.7 species) were significantly richer than EMT (5.9 species). Cover in 1-m2 plots was significantly higher in EMT than in NMT, NMS, or OS. Species richness at the point scale showed a unimodal relation to canopy cover, with cover accounting for 30% of the variation in number of species in 1-m2 quadrats. Competitive exclusion and allelopathy have perhaps limited species richness at the point scale in exotic grassland. There was no evidence of a species-pool effect between point and community scales, but such an effect between community and landscape scales was supported. Madrean mixed-grass prairies are landscapes with high species richness in comparison to other grassland types in North America, providing a large pool of potential colonizing species at the community scale. Beta-diversity (between communities) within the landscape of the Appleton-Whittell Research Ranch was consequently high despite a relative lack of habitat diversity.

  9. Differences in wetland nitrogen cycling between the invasive grass Microstegium vimineum and a diverse plant community.

    PubMed

    DeMeester, Julie E; DeB Richter, Daniel

    2010-04-01

    Wetlands are valuable for buffering waterways from excess nitrogen, yet these habitats are often dominated by invasive plant species. There is little understanding as to how various invasive species alter ecosystem nitrogen cycling, especially if one invasive overtakes an entire community of plants. Microstegium vimineum is a nonnative annual grass from Asia that is dominating riparian wetlands in the southeastern United States. To evaluate M. vimineum impacts on the N cycle, we used six paired plots, one invaded by M. vimineum and the other carefully weeded of M. vimineum; removal allowed the establishment of a diverse plant community consisting of Polygonum, Juncus, and Carex species. In the paired plots, we estimated (1) N uptake and accumulation in vegetation biomass, (2) rates of decomposition and N release from plant detritus, (3) mineral soil N mineralization and nitrification, (4) root zone redox potential, and (5) soil water concentrations of inorganic N. The M. vimineum community accumulated approximately half the annual N biomass of the diverse community, 5.04 vs. 9.36 g N x m(-2) x yr(-1), respectively (P = 0.05). Decomposition and release of N from M. vimineum detritus was much less than in the diverse community, 1.19 vs. 5.24 g N x m(-2) x yr(-1). Significantly higher inorganic soil N persisted beneath M. vimineum during the dormant season, although rates of soil N mineralization estimated by in situ incubations were relatively similar in all plots. Microstegium vimineum invasion thus appears to greatly diminish within-ecosystem circulation of N through the understory plants of these wetlands, whereas invasion effects on ecosystem N losses may derive more from enhanced denitrification (due to lower redox potential under M. vimineum plots) than due to leaching. Microstegium vimineum's dominance and yet slower internal cycling of N are counterintuitive to conventional thinking that ecosystems with high N contain vegetation that quickly uptake and

  10. A comparison of stable caesium uptake by six grass species of contrasting growth strategy.

    PubMed

    Willey, N J; Martin, M H

    1997-01-01

    Six plant species in the family Gramineae were used to investigate the relationship between Cs uptake, nutrient regime and plant growth strategy sensu Grime (1979: Plant Growth Strategies and Vegetation Processes, John Wiley). The roots of 66 day old Elymus repens (L.) Gould., Bromus sterilis L., Agrostis stolonifera L., Anthoxanthum odoratum L., Festuca ovina L. and Nardus stricta L. plants grown in acid-washed sand at high and low nutrient levels were exposed to a 96 h pulse of stable Cs at 0.05 mM, 0.15 mM, 0.3 mM, 1.0 mM and 3.0 mM concentrations. Different nutrient regimes induced large differences in dry wt in E. repens, B. sterilis and A. stolonifera plants but only small differences in N. stricta and F. ovina plants. At high nutrient concentrations, A. stolonifera, A. odoratum, F. ovina and N. stricta shoots showed significantly greater increases in internal Cs concentration with rising external Cs concentrations than did E. repens and B. sterilis shoots. The relationship between increases in shoot and external Cs concentrations was statistically indistinguishable between species in plants grown at the low nutrient concentration. These patterns of Cs uptake ensured that with long-term high K concentrations the more competitive plants (E. repens and B. sterilis) accumulated higher concentrations of Cs from low external concentrations than did non-competitive plants or competitive plants grown at low nutrient levels. It is suggested that the relationship between plant growth strategy sensu Grime (1979) and Cs accumulation patterns may help to explain the different concentrations to which species accumulate radiocaesium from the soil.

  11. Immunoglobulin E-binding reactivities of natural pollen grain extracts from selected grass species in the Philippines

    PubMed Central

    Cabauatan, Clarissa R.

    2012-01-01

    Background Pollen grains have been reported to be present in the Philippine atmosphere but studies regarding their allergenicity are limited. Objective The present study aimed to profile the sensitization of allergic individuals to selected grass pollen species and to characterize the pollen proteins that may be responsible for this allergenic response. Methods The protein profile of the grass pollen extracts from Cynodon dactylon, Saccharum spontaneum, Sporobulus indicus, Chloris barbata, Oryza sativa, Imperata cylindrica, and Zea mays was analyzed by Sodium Dodecyl Sulphate Polyacrylamide Gel Electrophoresis. The specific-IgE profile of the allergic individuals and the allergenic potential of the pollen extracts were evaluated through Enzyme-linked Immunosorbent Assay and IgE immunoblotting. Results Sensitization of the allergic individuals to the pollen extracts was detected with I. cylindrica and O. sativa to be the most frequently recognized with more that 92% reactivity, whereas for C. dactylon and Z. mays, were found to have less than 25% reactivity. Conclusion Multiple IgE-binding proteins from S. indicus, S. spontaneum and C. barbata that were detected may be responsible for the allergic reactions among Filipino subjects. PMID:22701864

  12. Effects of neighbor species and distance on 2- and 4-year survival of Lehmann lovegrass and native grasses

    Treesearch

    Sharon H. Biedenbender; Mitchel P. McClaran; Bruce A. Roundy

    2003-01-01

    The relationship between Lehmann lovegrass, an invasive African grass, and native Southwestern grasses has not been fully determined. The first purpose of this study was to compare the survival of Lehmann lovegrass with two native grasses (plains lovegrass and Arizona cottontop) seeded on the Santa Rita Experimental Range in southeast Arizona in 1994. One year after...

  13. Genome size differences in Hyalella cryptic species.

    PubMed

    Vergilino, Roland; Dionne, Kaven; Nozais, Christian; Dufresne, France; Belzile, Claude

    2012-02-01

    The Hyalella azteca (Saussure) complex includes numerous amphipod cryptic species in freshwater habitats in America as revealed by DNA barcoding surveys. Two ecomorphs (small and large) have evolved numerous times in this complex. Few phenotypic criteria have been found to differentiate between the numerous species of this complex. The present study aims to explore genome size differences between some species of the H. azteca complex co-occurring in a Canadian boreal lake using flow cytometry. Nuclear DNA content was estimated for 50 individuals belonging to six COI haplotypes corresponding to four provisional species of the H. azteca complex. Species from the large ecomorph had C-values significantly larger than species from the small ecomorph, whereas slight differences were found among species of the small ecomorph. These differences in genome sizes might be linked to ecological and physiological differences among species of the H. azteca complex.

  14. Characterization of gene expression associated with drought avoidance and tolerance traits in a perennial grass species.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Peng; An, Yuan; Wang, Zhaolong; Du, Hongmei; Huang, Bingru

    2014-01-01

    To understand molecular mechanisms of perennial grass adaptation to drought stress, genes associated with drought avoidance or tolerance traits were identified and their expression patterns were characterized in C4 hybrid bermudagrass [Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers.×C. transvaalensis Burtt Davy, cv. Tifway] and common bermudagrass (C. dactylon, cv. C299). Plants of drought-tolerant 'Tifway' and drought-sensitive 'C299' were exposed to drought for 5 d (mild stress) and 10 d (severe stress) by withholding irrigation in a growth chamber. 'Tifway' maintained significantly lower electrolyte leakage and higher relative water content than 'C299' at both 5 and 10 d of drought stress. Four cDNA libraries via suppression subtractive hybridization analysis were constructed and identified 277 drought-responsive genes in the two genotypes at 5 and 10 d of drought stress, which were mainly classified into the functional categories of stress defense, metabolism, osmoregulation, membrane system, signal and regulator, structural protein, protein synthesis and degradation, and energy metabolism. Quantitative-PCR analysis confirmed the expression of 36 drought up-regulated genes that were more highly expressed in drought-tolerant 'Tifway' than drought-sensitive 'C299', including those for drought avoidance traits, such as cuticle wax formation (CER1 and sterol desaturase), for drought tolerance traits, such as dehydration-protective proteins (dehydrins, HVA-22-like protein) and oxidative stress defense (superoxide dismutase, dehydroascorbate reductase, 2-Cys peroxiredoxins), and for stress signaling (EREBP-4 like protein and WRKY transcription factor). The results suggest that the expression of genes for stress signaling, cuticle wax accumulation, antioxidant defense, and dehydration-protective protein accumulation could be critically important for warm-season perennial grass adaptation to long-term drought stress.

  15. The Effects of Seed Ingestion by Livestock, Dung Fertilization, Trampling, Grass Competition and Fire on Seedling Establishment of Two Woody Plant Species

    PubMed Central

    Tjelele, Julius; Ward, David; Dziba, Luthando

    2015-01-01

    The increasing rate of woody plant encroachment in grasslands or savannas remains a challenge to livestock farmers. The causes and control measures of woody plant encroachment are of common interest, especially where it negatively affects the objectives of an agricultural enterprise. The objectives of this study were to determine the effects of gut passage (goats, cattle), dung (nutrients), fire, grass competition and trampling on establishment of A. nilotica and D. cinerea seedlings. Germination trials were subjected to the following treatments: 1) seed passage through the gut of cattle and goats and unpassed/ untreated seeds (i.e. not ingested), 2) dung and control (no dung), 3) grass and control (mowed grass), 4) fire and control (no fire), 5) trampling and control (no trampling). The interaction of animal species, grass and fire had an effect on seedling recruitment (P < 0.0052). Seeds retrieved from goats and planted with no grass and with fire (6.81% ± 0.33) had a significant effect on seedling recruitment than seeds retrieved from goats and planted with grass and no fire (2.98% ± 0.33). Significantly more D. cinerea and A. nilotica seeds germinated following seed ingestion by goats (3.59% ± 0.16) than cattle (1.93% ± 0.09) and control or untreated seeds (1.69% ± 0.11). Less dense grass cover, which resulted in reduced grass competition with tree seedlings for light, space and water, and improved seed scarification due to gut passage were vital for emergence and recruitment of Acacia seedlings. These results will contribute considerably to the understanding of the recruitment phase of woody plant encroachment. PMID:25695765

  16. The effects of seed ingestion by livestock, dung fertilization, trampling, grass competition and fire on seedling establishment of two woody plant species.

    PubMed

    Tjelele, Julius; Ward, David; Dziba, Luthando

    2015-01-01

    The increasing rate of woody plant encroachment in grasslands or savannas remains a challenge to livestock farmers. The causes and control measures of woody plant encroachment are of common interest, especially where it negatively affects the objectives of an agricultural enterprise. The objectives of this study were to determine the effects of gut passage (goats, cattle), dung (nutrients), fire, grass competition and trampling on establishment of A. nilotica and D. cinerea seedlings. Germination trials were subjected to the following treatments: 1) seed passage through the gut of cattle and goats and unpassed/ untreated seeds (i.e. not ingested), 2) dung and control (no dung), 3) grass and control (mowed grass), 4) fire and control (no fire), 5) trampling and control (no trampling). The interaction of animal species, grass and fire had an effect on seedling recruitment (P < 0.0052). Seeds retrieved from goats and planted with no grass and with fire (6.81% ± 0.33) had a significant effect on seedling recruitment than seeds retrieved from goats and planted with grass and no fire (2.98% ± 0.33). Significantly more D. cinerea and A. nilotica seeds germinated following seed ingestion by goats (3.59% ± 0.16) than cattle (1.93% ± 0.09) and control or untreated seeds (1.69% ± 0.11). Less dense grass cover, which resulted in reduced grass competition with tree seedlings for light, space and water, and improved seed scarification due to gut passage were vital for emergence and recruitment of Acacia seedlings. These results will contribute considerably to the understanding of the recruitment phase of woody plant encroachment.

  17. Temperate grass response to extent and timing of grazing

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Considerable differences exist among cool-season grass species in their production potential and response to management variables. We examined the effects of grazing management on forage and root production of two temperate perennial grasses, meadow fescue [Schedonoruspratensis (Huds.) P. Beauv.] an...

  18. In the shadow of a megalopolis, a new Flexamia from a threatened grass species in the New Jersey Pine Barrens (Hemiptera, Cicadellidae, Deltocephalinae, Paralimnini)

    PubMed Central

    Hicks, Andrew

    2015-01-01

    Abstract A previously unknown species of the North American leafhopper genus Flexamia, Flexamia whitcombi sp. n., is described from pinebarren smokegrass (Muhlenbergia torreyana (Schult.) Hitchc.), a state-listed threatened grass in the New Jersey Pine Barrens. The serrata species group, to which it belongs, is redefined and a key to the species of the group is provided. This is the first reported insect association with Muhlenbergia torreyana. PMID:26257551

  19. Functional Traits Differ between Cereal Crop Progenitors and Other Wild Grasses Gathered in the Neolithic Fertile Crescent

    PubMed Central

    Cunniff, Jennifer; Wilkinson, Sarah; Charles, Michael; Jones, Glynis; Rees, Mark; Osborne, Colin P.

    2014-01-01

    The reasons why some plant species were selected as crops and others were abandoned during the Neolithic emergence of agriculture are poorly understood. We tested the hypothesis that the traits of Fertile Crescent crop progenitors were advantageous in the fertile, disturbed habitats surrounding early settlements and in cultivated fields. We screened functional traits related to competition and disturbance in a group of grass species that were increasingly exploited by early plant gatherers, and that were later domesticated (crop progenitors); and in a set of grass species for which there is archaeological evidence of gathering, but which were never domesticated (wild species). We hypothesised that crop progenitors would have greater seed mass, growth rate, height and yield than wild species, as these traits are indicative of greater competitive ability, and that crop progenitors would be more resilient to defoliation. Our results show that crop progenitors have larger seed mass than wild species, germinate faster and have greater seedling size. Increased seed size is weakly but positively correlated with a higher growth rate, which is primarily driven by greater biomass assimilation per unit leaf area. Crop progenitors also tend to have a taller stature, greater grain yield and higher resilience to defoliation. Collectively, the data are consistent with the hypothesis that adaptations to competition and disturbance gave crop progenitors a selective advantage in the areas surrounding early human settlements and in cultivated environments, leading to their adoption as crops through processes of unconscious selection. PMID:24489941

  20. Quantifying Differences Between Native and Introduced Species.

    PubMed

    Lemoine, Nathan P; Burkepile, Deron E; Parker, John D

    2016-05-01

    Introduced species have historically been presumed to be evolutionarily novel and 'different' from native species. Recent studies question these assumptions, however, as the traits and factors promoting successful introduced and native species can be similar. We advocate a novel statistical framework utilizing quantifiable metrics of evolutionary and ecological differences among species to test whether different forces govern the success of native versus introduced species. In two case studies, we show that native and introduced species appear to follow the same 'rules' for becoming abundant. We propose that incorporating quantitative differences in traits and evolutionary history among species might largely account for many perceived effects of geographic origin, leading to more rigorous and general tests of the factors promoting organism success. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. The activities of PEP carboxylase and the C4 acid decarboxylases are little changed by drought stress in three C4 grasses of different subtypes.

    PubMed

    Carmo-Silva, Ana E; Bernardes da Silva, Anabela; Keys, Alfred J; Parry, Martin A J; Arrabaça, Maria C

    2008-09-01

    The C4 photosynthetic pathway involves the assimilation of CO2 by phosphoenolpyruvate carboxylase (PEPC) and the subsequent decarboxylation of C4 acids. The enzymes of the CO2 concentrating mechanism could be affected under water deficit and limit C4 photosynthesis. Three different C4 grasses were submitted to gradually induced drought stress conditions: Paspalum dilatatum (NADP-malic enzyme, NADP-ME), Cynodon dactylon (NAD-malic enzyme, NAD-ME) and Zoysia japonica (PEP carboxykinase, PEPCK). Moderate leaf dehydration affected the activity and regulation of PEPC in a similar manner in the three grasses but had species-specific effects on the C4 acid decarboxylases, NADP-ME, NAD-ME and PEPCK, although changes in the C4 enzyme activities were small. In all three species, the PEPC phosphorylation state, judged by the inhibitory effect of L-malate on PEPC activity, increased with water deficit and could promote increased assimilation of CO2 by the enzyme under stress conditions. Appreciable activity of PEPCK was observed in all three species suggesting that this enzyme may act as a supplementary decarboxylase to NADP-ME and NAD-ME in addition to its role in other metabolic pathways.

  2. The genus Sitothrips (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) with a new grass-living species from southern Iran.

    PubMed

    Minaei, Kambiz; Mound, Laurence

    2014-11-19

    One of the generic characters given by zur Strassen (2003) for species of the genus Sitothrips Priesner (1931) is the presence of 2-segmented maxillary palps. In contrast, a new species of this genus is described below from Iran in which the maxillary palps are clearly 3-segmented (Fig. 5). The genus was erected for arabicus Priesner from Egypt, a species now recorded widely among countries around the Mediterranean, from Morocco to southern Russia. Three further species are listed in Sitothrips: almargeniensis Titschack from Spain and Portugal, lindbergi zur Strassen from the Canary Islands and Morocco, and calcaratus (Savenko) from southern Russia. The identity of the latter species remains in some doubt as, in contrast to the other species, it was described as wingless and lacking ocelli (Savenko 1944), but zur Strassen (2003) provided an illustrated key to the other three species.

  3. Effect of species of cool-season annual grass interseeded into Bermudagrass sod on the performance of growing calves.

    PubMed

    Beck, P A; Stewart, C B; Phillips, J M; Watkins, K B; Gunter, S A

    2007-02-01

    Two experiments were conducted to evaluate the effect of species of cool-season annual grass on the growth of stocker cattle over 3 yr. In Exp. 1, the small grains (SG) oat (O), rye (R), and wheat (W), or combinations of SG and annual ryegrass (RG), were interseeded into Bermudagrass sod in a completely randomized design with a 3 x 2 factorial arrangement of treatments. In Exp. 2, RG was planted alone or with O, R, triticale (T), or W in a completely randomized design. Pastures were planted in late October of each year, and seeding rates were 134.4 and 22.4 kg/ha for SG and RG, respectively. In Exp. 1, grazing was initiated on December 18. In Exp. 2, grazing was initiated on December 23 for SG pastures and January 21 or February 16 for RG pastures in yr 1 and on December 8 for all pastures in yr 2. Grazing was managed using the put-and-take method, in which additional calves were added as needed to maintain equal grazing pressure among pastures. In Exp. 1, no interactions (P > or = 0.28) were detected, so the main effects of SG species and RG addition are discussed. From December 18 to March 12, there were no differences in ADG (P > or = 0.17), whereas during the spring (from March 12 to May 7), addition of RG increased (P = 0.05) ADG. Using RG increased (P < or = 0.01) animal grazing-days/hectare and BW gain/hectare. Wheat tended (P = 0.08) to increase BW gain/hectare compared with the other SG, and O tended (P = 0.09) to produce less BW gain/hectare than the other SG. The treatment x year interaction was significant (P < or = 0.05) in Exp. 2. In yr 1, no differences (P = 0.25) were observed for ADG from December 23 to March 8, but during the spring grazing period (from March 8 to May 5), ADG of calves grazing TRG was less (P < or = 0.04) than that of those grazing RG, RRG, or WRG. The RRG combination produced more (P < or = 0.03) BW gain/hectare than ORG, RG, or TRG and tended (P = 0.06) to produce more BW gain/hectare than WRG. The WRG combination produced more

  4. Statistical patterns in tropical tree cover explained by the different water demand of individual trees and grasses.

    PubMed

    Bertram, Jason; Dewar, Roderick C

    2013-10-01

    Tree cover varies enormously across tropical ecosystems-from arid savannas to closed rain forests-and yet a general predictive theory of tropical tree cover remains elusive. Here we use the maximum-entropy method to predict the most likely sample frequency distribution of ecosystems with different tree and grass fractional cover if balance between water supply and demand were the dominant constraint on community assembly. Assuming a hierarchy of individual plant water demand in which trees require more water than grasses, we reproduce observed trends in the means and the upper and lower limits of tropical tree and grass cover across the entire spectrum of tropical ecosystem water supply. Finer details not captured by our predictions indicate the influence of additional factors, such as disturbance. Our results challenge the view that tropical tree-grass coexistence is largely sustained by disturbances in moist environments ("unstable" coexistence) with water supply playing a dominant role only in arid conditions ("stable" coexistence). More generally, they suggest that macroecological patterns can be understood and predicted as the most likely outcome of a large number of stochastic processes being played out within a relatively small number of ecological constraints.

  5. Genome-Wide Analysis of NBS-LRR Genes in Sorghum Genome Revealed Several Events Contributing to NBS-LRR Gene Evolution in Grass Species

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Xiping; Wang, Jianping

    2016-01-01

    The nucleotide-binding site (NBS)–leucine-rich repeat (LRR) gene family is crucially important for offering resistance to pathogens. To explore evolutionary conservation and variability of NBS-LRR genes across grass species, we identified 88, 107, 24, and 44 full-length NBS-LRR genes in sorghum, rice, maize, and Brachypodium, respectively. A comprehensive analysis was performed on classification, genome organization, evolution, expression, and regulation of these NBS-LRR genes using sorghum as a representative of grass species. In general, the full-length NBS-LRR genes are highly clustered and duplicated in sorghum genome mainly due to local duplications. NBS-LRR genes have basal expression levels and are highly potentially targeted by miRNA. The number of NBS-LRR genes in the four grass species is positively correlated with the gene clustering rate. The results provided a valuable genomic resource and insights for functional and evolutionary studies of NBS-LRR genes in grass species. PMID:26792976

  6. Proteomic changes associated with expression of a gene (ipt) controlling cytokinin synthesis for improving heat tolerance in a perennial grass species

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Yan; Gianfagna, Thomas; Huang, Bingru

    2010-01-01

    Cytokinins (CKs) are known to regulate leaf senescence and affect heat tolerance, but mechanisms underlying CK regulation of heat tolerance are not well understood. A comprehensive proteomic study was conducted to identify proteins altered by the expression of the adenine isopentenyl transferase (ipt) gene controlling CK synthesis and associated with heat tolerance in transgenic plants for a C3 perennial grass species, Agrostis stolonifera. Transgenic plants with two different inducible promoters (SAG12 and HSP18) and a null transformant (NT) containing the vector without ipt were exposed to 20 °C (control) or 35 °C (heat stress) in growth chambers. Two-dimensional electrophoresis and mass spectrometry analysis were performed to identify protein changes in leaves and roots in response to ipt expression under heat stress. Transformation with ipt resulted in protein changes in leaves and roots involved in multiple functions, particularly in energy metabolism, protein destination and storage, and stress defence. The abundance levels of six leaf proteins (enolase, oxygen-evolving enhancer protein 2, putative oxygen-evolving complex, Rubisco small subunit, Hsp90, and glycolate oxidase) and nine root proteins (Fd-GOGAT, nucleotide-sugar dehydratase, NAD-dependent isocitrate dehydrogenase, ferredoxin-NADP reductase precursor, putative heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein A2, ascorbate peroxidase, dDTP-glucose 4–6-dehydratases-like protein, and two unknown proteins) were maintained or increased in at least one ipt transgenic line under heat stress. The diversity of proteins altered in transgenic plants in response to heat stress suggests a regulatory role for CKs in various metabolic pathways associated with heat tolerance in C3 perennial grass species. PMID:20547565

  7. Proteomic changes associated with expression of a gene (ipt) controlling cytokinin synthesis for improving heat tolerance in a perennial grass species.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yan; Gianfagna, Thomas; Huang, Bingru

    2010-07-01

    Cytokinins (CKs) are known to regulate leaf senescence and affect heat tolerance, but mechanisms underlying CK regulation of heat tolerance are not well understood. A comprehensive proteomic study was conducted to identify proteins altered by the expression of the adenine isopentenyl transferase (ipt) gene controlling CK synthesis and associated with heat tolerance in transgenic plants for a C(3) perennial grass species, Agrostis stolonifera. Transgenic plants with two different inducible promoters (SAG12 and HSP18) and a null transformant (NT) containing the vector without ipt were exposed to 20 degrees C (control) or 35 degrees C (heat stress) in growth chambers. Two-dimensional electrophoresis and mass spectrometry analysis were performed to identify protein changes in leaves and roots in response to ipt expression under heat stress. Transformation with ipt resulted in protein changes in leaves and roots involved in multiple functions, particularly in energy metabolism, protein destination and storage, and stress defence. The abundance levels of six leaf proteins (enolase, oxygen-evolving enhancer protein 2, putative oxygen-evolving complex, Rubisco small subunit, Hsp90, and glycolate oxidase) and nine root proteins (Fd-GOGAT, nucleotide-sugar dehydratase, NAD-dependent isocitrate dehydrogenase, ferredoxin-NADP reductase precursor, putative heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein A2, ascorbate peroxidase, dDTP-glucose 4-6-dehydratases-like protein, and two unknown proteins) were maintained or increased in at least one ipt transgenic line under heat stress. The diversity of proteins altered in transgenic plants in response to heat stress suggests a regulatory role for CKs in various metabolic pathways associated with heat tolerance in C(3) perennial grass species.

  8. Long-term exposure to elevated CO2 enhances plant community stability by suppressing dominant plant species in a mixed-grass prairie

    SciTech Connect

    Zelikova, Tamara Jane; Blumenthal, Dana M.; Williams, David G.; Souza, Lara; LeCain, Daniel R.; Morgan, Jack; Pendall, Elise

    2014-10-13

    Climate controls vegetation distribution across the globe, and some vegetation types are more vulnerable to climate change, whereas others are more resistant. Because resistance and resilience can influence ecosystem stability and determine how communities and ecosystems respond to climate change, we need to evaluate the potential for resistance as we predict future ecosystem function. In a mixed-grass prairie in the northern Great Plains, in this study we used a large field experiment to test the effects of elevated CO2, warming, and summer irrigation on plant community structure and productivity, linking changes in both to stability in plant community composition and biomass production. We show that the independent effects of CO2 and warming on community composition and productivity depend on interannual variation in precipitation and that the effects of elevated CO2 are not limited to water saving because they differ from those of irrigation. We also show that production in this mixed-grass prairie ecosystem is not only relatively resistant to interannual variation in precipitation, but also rendered more stable under elevated CO2 conditions. This increase in production stability is the result of altered community dominance patterns: Community evenness increases as dominant species decrease in biomass under elevated CO2. In many grasslands that serve as rangelands, the economic value of the ecosystem is largely dependent on plant community composition and the relative abundance of key forage species. Finally, our results have implications for how we manage native grasslands in the face of changing climate.

  9. Long-term exposure to elevated CO2 enhances plant community stability by suppressing dominant plant species in a mixed-grass prairie

    DOE PAGES

    Zelikova, Tamara Jane; Blumenthal, Dana M.; Williams, David G.; ...

    2014-10-13

    Climate controls vegetation distribution across the globe, and some vegetation types are more vulnerable to climate change, whereas others are more resistant. Because resistance and resilience can influence ecosystem stability and determine how communities and ecosystems respond to climate change, we need to evaluate the potential for resistance as we predict future ecosystem function. In a mixed-grass prairie in the northern Great Plains, in this study we used a large field experiment to test the effects of elevated CO2, warming, and summer irrigation on plant community structure and productivity, linking changes in both to stability in plant community composition andmore » biomass production. We show that the independent effects of CO2 and warming on community composition and productivity depend on interannual variation in precipitation and that the effects of elevated CO2 are not limited to water saving because they differ from those of irrigation. We also show that production in this mixed-grass prairie ecosystem is not only relatively resistant to interannual variation in precipitation, but also rendered more stable under elevated CO2 conditions. This increase in production stability is the result of altered community dominance patterns: Community evenness increases as dominant species decrease in biomass under elevated CO2. In many grasslands that serve as rangelands, the economic value of the ecosystem is largely dependent on plant community composition and the relative abundance of key forage species. Finally, our results have implications for how we manage native grasslands in the face of changing climate.« less

  10. Species' traits help predict small mammal responses to habitat homogenization by an invasive grass.

    PubMed

    Ceradini, Joseph P; Chalfoun, Anna D

    2017-03-20

    Invasive plants can negatively affect native species, however, the strength, direction, and shape of responses may vary depending on the type of habitat alteration and the natural history of native species. To prioritize conservation of vulnerable species, it is therefore critical to effectively predict species' responses to invasive plants, which may be facilitated by a framework based on species' traits. We studied the population and community responses of small mammals and changes in habitat heterogeneity across a gradient of cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) cover, a widespread invasive plant in North America. We live-trapped small mammals over two summers and assessed the effect of cheatgrass on native small mammal abundance, richness, and species-specific and trait-based occupancy, while accounting for detection probability and other key habitat elements. Abundance was only estimated for the most common species, deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus). All species were pooled for the trait-based occupancy analysis to quantify the ability of small mammal traits (habitat association, mode of locomotion, and diet) to predict responses to cheatgrass invasion. Habitat heterogeneity decreased with cheatgrass cover. Deer mouse abundance increased marginally with cheatgrass. Species richness did not vary with cheatgrass, however, pocket mouse (Perognathus spp.) and harvest mouse (Reithrodontomys spp.) occupancy tended to decrease and increase, respectively, with cheatgrass cover, suggesting a shift in community composition. Cheatgrass had little effect on occupancy for deer mice, 13-lined ground squirrels (Spermophilus tridecemlineatus), and Ord's kangaroo rat (Dipodomys ordii). Species' responses to cheatgrass primarily corresponded with our a priori predictions based on species' traits. The probability of occupancy varied significantly with a species' habitat association but not with diet or mode of locomotion. When considered within the context of a rapid habitat change

  11. Analysis of Lignin-Polysaccharide Complexes Formed during Grass Lignin Degradation by Cultures of Pleurotus Species.

    PubMed

    Gutierrez, A; Bocchini, P; Galletti, G C; Martinez, A T

    1996-06-01

    A brown material, precipitable with ethanol, was formed during wheat straw and lignin degradation by liquid cultures of different species of Pleurotus. Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy and cross-polarization and magic-angle-spinning (sup13)C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy showed that most of the precipitable material was formed from exopolysaccharide secreted by the fungus but it also contained an aromatic fraction. The results of acid hydrolysis, methylation analysis, and Smith degradation indicated that the major exopolysaccharide produced by these fungi is a (1(symbl)3)-(beta)-glucan branched at C-6 every two or three residues along the main chain. The presence of lignin or straw in the culture medium had little effect on the composition and structure of the extracellular polysaccharide. Cross-polarization and magic-angle-spinning (sup13)C nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy provided an estimation of the aromatic content of the lignin-polysaccharide complexes, assigning 20% of the total (sup13)C signal in the material recovered from cultures of Pleurotus eryngii in lignin medium to aromatic carbon. Analytical pyrolysis indicated that the aromatic fractions of the lignin-polysaccharide complexes were derived from lignin, since products characteristic of pyrolytic breakdown of H (p-hydroxyphenylpropane), G (guaiacylpropane), and S (syringylpropane) lignin units were identified. These complexes cannot be fractionated by treatment with polyvinylpyrrolidone or extraction with lignin solvents, suggesting that the two polymers were chemically linked. Moreover, differences in composition with respect to the original lignin indicated that this macromolecule was modified by the fungi during the process of formation of the lignin-polysaccharide complexes.

  12. Environmental niche variation and evolutionary diversification of the Brachypodium distachyon grass complex species in their native circum-Mediterranean range.

    PubMed

    López-Alvarez, Diana; Manzaneda, Antonio J; Rey, Pedro J; Giraldo, Patricia; Benavente, Elena; Allainguillaume, Joël; Mur, Luis; Caicedo, Ana L; Hazen, Samuel P; Breiman, Adina; Ezrati, Smadar; Catalán, Pilar

    2015-07-01

    • We conducted environmental niche modeling (ENM) of the Brachypodium distachyon s.l. complex, a model group of two diploid annual grasses (B. distachyon, B. stacei) and their derived allotetraploid (B. hybridum), native to the circum-Mediterranean region. We (1) investigated the ENMs of the three species in their native range based on present and past climate data; (2) identified potential overlapping niches of the diploids and their hybrid across four Quaternary windows; (3) tested whether speciation was associated with niche divergence/conservatism in the complex species; and (4) tested for the potential of the polyploid outperforming the diploids in the native range.• Geo-referenced data, altitude, and 19 climatic variables were used to construct the ENMs. We used paleoclimate niche models to trace the potential existence of ancestral gene flow among the hybridizing species of the complex.• Brachypodium distachyon grows in higher, cooler, and wetter places, B. stacei in lower, warmer, and drier places, and B. hybridum in places with intermediate climatic features. Brachypodium hybridum had the largest niche overlap with its parent niches, but a similar distribution range and niche breadth.• Each species had a unique environmental niche though there were multiple niche overlapping areas for the diploids across time, suggesting the potential existence of several hybrid zones during the Pleistocene and the Holocene. No evidence of niche divergence was found, suggesting that species diversification was not driven by ecological speciation but by evolutionary history, though it could be associated to distinct environmental adaptations. © 2015 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

  13. Fusarium dactylidis sp. nov., a novel nivalenol toxin-producing species sister to F. pseudograminearum isolated from orchard grass (Dactylis glomerata) in Oregon and New Zealand.

    PubMed

    Aoki, Takayuki; Vaughan, Martha M; McCormick, Susan P; Busman, Mark; Ward, Todd J; Kelly, Amy; O'Donnell, Kerry; Johnston, Peter R; Geiser, David M

    2015-01-01

    The B trichothecene toxin-producing clade (B clade) of Fusarium includes the etiological agents of Fusarium head blight, crown rot of wheat and barley and stem and ear rot of maize. B clade isolates also have been recovered from several wild and cultivated grasses, including Dactylis glomerata (orchard grass or cock's foot), one of the world's most important forage grasses. Two isolates from the latter host are formally described here as F. dactylidis. Phenotypically F. dactylidis most closely resembles F. ussurianum from the Russian Far East. Both species produce symmetrical sporodochial conidia that are similar in size and curved toward both ends. However, conidia of F. ussurianum typically end in a narrow apical beak while the apical cell of F. dactylidis is acute. Fusarium dactylidis produced nivalenol mycotoxin in planta as well as low but detectable amounts of the estrogenic mycotoxin zearalenone in vitro. Results of a pathogenicity test revealed that F. dactylidis induced mild head blight on wheat.

  14. Are Mojave Desert annual species equal? Resource acquisition and allocation for the invasive grass Bromus madritensis subsp. rubens (Poaceae) and two native species

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Defalco, Lesley A.; Bryla, David R.; Smith-Longozo, Vickie; Nowak, Robert S.

    2003-01-01

    Abundance of invasive plants is often attributed to their ability ot outcompete native species. We compared resource acquisition and allocation of the invasive annual grass Bromus madritensis subsp. rubens with that of two native Mojave Desert annuals, Vulpia octoflora and Descurainia pinnata, in a glasshouse experiment. Each species was grown in monoculture at two densities and two levels of N availability to compare how these annuals capture resources and to understand their relative sensitivities to environmental change. During >4 mo of growth, Bromus used water more rapidly and had greater biomass and N content than the natives, partly because of its greater root-surface area and its exploitation of deep soils. Bromus also had greater N uptake, net assimilation and transpiration rates, and canopy area than Vulpia. Resource use by Bromuswas less sensitive to changes in N availability or density than were the natives. The two native species in this study produced numerous small seeds that tended to remain dormant, thus ensuring escape of offspring from unfavorable germination conditions; Bromus produced fewer but larger seeds that readily germinated. Collectively, these traits give Bromus the potential to rapidly establish in diverse habitats of the Mojave Desert, thereby gaining an advantage over coexisting native species.

  15. Root Antioxidant Mechanisms in Relation to Root Thermotolerance in Perennial Grass Species Contrasting in Heat Tolerance

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Yi; Burgess, Patrick; Huang, Bingru

    2015-01-01

    Mechanisms of plant root tolerance to high temperatures through antioxidant defense are not well understood. The objective of this study was to investigate whether superior root thermotolerance of heat-tolerant Agrostis scabra relative to its congeneric heat-sensitive Agrostis stolonifera was associated with differential accumulation of reactive oxygen species and antioxidant scavenging systems. A. scabra ‘NTAS’ and A. stolonifera ‘Penncross’ plants were exposed to heat stress (35/30°C, day/night) in growth chambers for 24 d. Superoxide (O2-) content increased in both A. stolonifera and A. scabra roots under heat stress but to a far lesser extent in A. scabra than in A. stolonifera. Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) content increased significantly in A. stolonifera roots but not in A. scabra roots responding to heat stress. The content of antioxidant compounds (ascorbate and glutathione) did not differ between A. stolonifera and A. scabra under heat stress. Enzymatic activity of superoxide dismutase was less suppressed in A. scabra than that in A. stolonifera under heat stress, while peroxidase and catalase were more induced in A. scabra than in A. stolonifera. Similarly, their encoded transcript levels were either less suppressed, or more induced in A. scabra roots than those in A. stolonifera during heat stress. Roots of A. scabra exhibited greater alternative respiration rate and lower cytochrome respiration rate under heat stress, which was associated with suppression of O2- and H2O2 production as shown by respiration inhibitors. Superior root thermotolerance of A. scabra was related to decreases in H2O2 and O2- accumulation facilitated by active enzymatic antioxidant defense systems and the maintenance of alternative respiration, alleviating cellular damages by heat-induced oxidative stress. PMID:26382960

  16. Root Antioxidant Mechanisms in Relation to Root Thermotolerance in Perennial Grass Species Contrasting in Heat Tolerance.

    PubMed

    Xu, Yi; Burgess, Patrick; Huang, Bingru

    2015-01-01

    Mechanisms of plant root tolerance to high temperatures through antioxidant defense are not well understood. The objective of this study was to investigate whether superior root thermotolerance of heat-tolerant Agrostis scabra relative to its congeneric heat-sensitive Agrostis stolonifera was associated with differential accumulation of reactive oxygen species and antioxidant scavenging systems. A. scabra 'NTAS' and A. stolonifera 'Penncross' plants were exposed to heat stress (35/30°C, day/night) in growth chambers for 24 d. Superoxide (O2(-)) content increased in both A. stolonifera and A. scabra roots under heat stress but to a far lesser extent in A. scabra than in A. stolonifera. Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) content increased significantly in A. stolonifera roots but not in A. scabra roots responding to heat stress. The content of antioxidant compounds (ascorbate and glutathione) did not differ between A. stolonifera and A. scabra under heat stress. Enzymatic activity of superoxide dismutase was less suppressed in A. scabra than that in A. stolonifera under heat stress, while peroxidase and catalase were more induced in A. scabra than in A. stolonifera. Similarly, their encoded transcript levels were either less suppressed, or more induced in A. scabra roots than those in A. stolonifera during heat stress. Roots of A. scabra exhibited greater alternative respiration rate and lower cytochrome respiration rate under heat stress, which was associated with suppression of O2(-) and H2O2 production as shown by respiration inhibitors. Superior root thermotolerance of A. scabra was related to decreases in H2O2 and O2(-) accumulation facilitated by active enzymatic antioxidant defense systems and the maintenance of alternative respiration, alleviating cellular damages by heat-induced oxidative stress.

  17. Use of radiometric indices to evaluate Zn and Pb stress in two grass species (Festuca rubra L. and Vulpia myuros L.).

    PubMed

    Gómez, J; Yunta, F; Esteban, E; Carpena, R O; Zornoza, P

    2016-11-01

    Vegetation indices obtained from radiometric measurements have been used to estimate the stress response of plants grown in contaminated sites. The phytotoxicity of Pb and Zn in Festuca rubra L. and Vulpia myuros L. plants grown under hydroponic conditions was evaluated using vegetation indices obtained from radiometric measurements. The plants were supplied with 3 mM Zn (+Zn), 500 μM Pb (+Pb) and 500 μM Pb with EDTA (+PbEDTA) for 3 months. Significantly higher Zn concentrations in F. rubra shoots compared with V. myuros shoots were detected for Zn and Pb treatments. EDTA increased Pb transport to the shoots for both grasses, while Pb-treated plants retained Pb primarily in the roots. All vegetation indices tested showed the highest differences in F. rubra under +PbEDTA treatment and minor effects under +Zn, whereas the major variations for V. myuros corresponded to +Zn treatment, followed by +PbEDTA. Red edge normalized difference vegetation index, yellowness index and anthocyanin concentration index were the most sensitive indices to report Zn and Pb phytotoxicity in these grasses. According to the results obtained, both metal concentrations and radiometric indices suggested that Pb is more phytotoxic to F. rubra, which tolerates high Zn levels, whereas V. myuros was strongly affected by high Zn levels and markedly tolerant to Pb, even when applied in a mobile form (PbEDTA). Both species could be used in the phytostabilization of Zn- and Pb-contaminated soils. The abilities of F. rubra to accumulate Zn and V. myuros to accumulate Pb in the roots would facilitate a more efficient phytoremediation strategy when used in combination.

  18. Untangling a species complex of arid zone grasses (Triodia) reveals patterns congruent with co-occurring animals.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Benjamin M; Barrett, Matthew D; Krauss, Siegfried L; Thiele, Kevin

    2016-08-01

    The vast Australian arid zone formed over the last 15million years, and gradual aridification as well as more extreme Pliocene and Pleistocene climate shifts have impacted the evolution of its biota. Understanding the evolutionary history of groups of organisms or regional biotas such as the Australian arid biota requires clear delimitation of the units of biodiversity (taxa). Here we integrate evidence from nuclear (ETS and ITS) and chloroplast (rps16-trnK spacer) regions and morphology to clarify taxonomic boundaries in a species complex of Australian hummock grasses (Triodia) to better understand the evolution of Australian arid zone plants and to evaluate congruence in distribution patterns with co-occurring organisms. We find evidence for multiple new taxa in the T. basedowii species complex, but also incongruence between data sets and indications of hybridization that complicate delimitation. We find that the T. basedowii complex has high lineage diversity and endemism in the biologically important Pilbara region of Western Australia, consistent with the region acting as a refugium. Taxa show strong geographic structure in the Pilbara, congruent with recent work on co-occurring animals and suggesting common evolutionary drivers across the biota. Our findings confirm recognition of the Pilbara as an important centre of biodiversity in the Australian arid zone, and provide a basis for future taxonomic revision of the T. basedowii complex and more detailed study of its evolutionary history and that of arid Australia.

  19. Multiple bacterial symbionts in two species of co-occurring gutless oligochaete worms from Mediterranean sea grass sediments.

    PubMed

    Ruehland, Caroline; Blazejak, Anna; Lott, Christian; Loy, Alexander; Erséus, Christer; Dubilier, Nicole

    2008-12-01

    Gutless oligochaete worms are found worldwide in the pore waters of marine sediments and live in symbiosis with chemoautotrophic sulfur-oxidizing bacteria. In the Mediterranean, two species of gutless oligochaete worms, Olavius algarvensis and O. ilvae, co-occur in sediments around sea grass beds. These sediments have extremely low sulfide concentrations (< 1 microM), raising the question if O. ilvae, as shown previously for O. algarvensis, also harbours sulfate-reducing symbionts that provide its sulfur-oxidizing symbionts with reduced sulfur compounds. In this study, we used fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) and comparative sequence analysis of genes for 16S rRNA, sulfur metabolism (aprA and dsrAB), and autotrophic carbon fixation (cbbL) to examine the microbial community of O. ilvae and re-examine the O. algarvensis symbiosis. In addition to the four previously described symbionts of O. algarvensis, in this study a fifth symbiont belonging to the Spirochaetes was found in these hosts. The symbiotic community of O. ilvae was similar to that of O. algarvensis and also included two gammaproteobacterial sulfur oxidizers and two deltaproteobacterial sulfate reducers, but not a spirochete. The phylogenetic and metabolic similarity of the symbiotic communities in these two co-occurring host species that are not closely related to each other indicates that syntrophic sulfur cycling provides a strong selective advantage to these worms in their sulfide-poor environment.

  20. Competition effects from cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) differs among perennial grasses of the Great Basin

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Competition from the exotic annual grass, cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum), threatens millions of hectares of native plant communities throughout the Great Basin. The Nature Conservancy has identified the Great Basin as the third most endangered ecosystem in the United States. Not only has increased fue...

  1. Grass seedling growth and survival under different post-fire grazing management scenarios

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    As wildfires have increased in frequency and size throughout the Great Basin, post-fire rehabilitation activities have become important in reestablishing resilient sagebrush steppe communities. Many rehabilitation treatments fail when perennial grass seedlings do not establish. This can be due to pr...

  2. Morphoanatomical responses induced by excess iron in roots of two tolerant grass species.

    PubMed

    de Araújo, Talita Oliveira; de Freitas-Silva, Larisse; Santana, Brenda Vila Nova; Kuki, Kacilda Naomi; Pereira, Eduardo Gusmão; Azevedo, Aristéa Alves; da Silva, Luzimar Campos

    2015-02-01

    We aimed to verify whether morphoanatomic alterations occur in response to excess iron, in roots of Setaria parviflora and Paspallum urvillei (Poaceae), and to localize the presence of the sites of iron accumulation. Plants were subjected to 0.009, 1, 2, 4, and 7 mM Fe-EDTA in nutrient solution. Both species presented iron contents in the roots above the critical toxicity level. The presence of iron plaque on roots of the two species was confirmed, and it may have reduced iron absorption by the plants. Roots from the two species showed typical visual symptoms of stress by excess iron: change in color and mucilaginous and flaccid appearance. Anatomical damage was observed in both species: aerenchyma disruption, alterations in endodermal cells, and irregular shape of both vessel and sieve tube elements. The metal was histolocalized in the cortex and in protoxylem and metaxylem cell walls in both species, which suggests a detoxification strategy for the excess iron. Phenolic compounds were not histolocalized in roots. Microscopic analyses were therefore effective in evaluating the real damage caused by excess iron.

  3. Assessing the coexistence of Mediterranean oak species having different hygrophilia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Di Paola, Arianna; Trabucco, Antonio; Paquette, Alain; Valentini, Riccardo; Paparella, Francesco

    2014-05-01

    In a previous work (Di Paola et al., 2011) we defined a mathematical model to explain the observed copresence of trees having different responses to water stress (i.e. drought sensitive but flood resistant (hygrophilous species) and vice versa (non-hygrophilous species)). The model admits different equilibria, the most interesting of which is that of coexistence for which we found out the necessary condition for its stability and biological meaningful. Such model predicts that a stable forest with coexistence of both the species must have an evapotranspiration (ET) that ranges between the ETs that occur in the cases of stable forests with single species. With the present work we want to test the validity of the model on the copresence of typical endemism of deciduous and evergreen oaks species of the Mediterranean. Justifications are: oak trees represent the vegetation climax stage in the Mediterranean climate type. There are many observed and cited cases of such copresence in literature and most of them are explained by the different responses to water stress between deciduous and evergreen leaf habit. Lastly, the Mediterranean climate, characterized by hot dry summers and rainy winters, subject these species to the double stress of summer drought and flood winter (dynamics on which the model focuses on). To do that we mainly use 3 open source dataset: 1) the Modis actual evapotranspiration global maps, from which we derived the mean annual evapotranspiration of the period 2000-2011; 2) The mean actual evapotranspiration global map (period 1950-2000, supposing a land cover of green grass) provided by the CGIAR-CSI; 3) the European tree species distribution provided by the Joint Research Center from which we extracted the distribution of the main endemic oaks species of the Mediterranean area. The results show that i) the choice of leaf habit (Deciduous vs. Evergreen) as a proxy for hygrophilous and non-hygrophilous distinction is reasonable for this case study; ii

  4. CO2 enrichment increases element concentrations in grass mixtures by changing species abundances

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The continuing rise in atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration may increase plant growth relatively more than the uptake of soil-derived chemical elements that are essential for herbivores. Rising CO2 also may alter the nutritional quality of forage or fodder derived from multi-species veget...

  5. Cheatgrass facilitates spillover of a seed bank pathogen onto native grass species

    Treesearch

    Julie Beckstead; Susan E. Meyer; Brian M. Connolly; Michael B. Huck; Laura E. Street

    2010-01-01

    Attack by pathogens can have ecological consequences for plants at many scales, such as the individual, population and community scale, although the latter is the least studied. Community-level consequences of disease in natural plant communities can drive facilitation in succession (Van der Putten, Van Dijk & Peters 1993), maintain species diversity in...

  6. Phenotypic distribution models corroborate species distribution models: A shift in the role and prevalence of a dominant prairie grass in response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Smith, Adam B; Alsdurf, Jacob; Knapp, Mary; Baer, Sara G; Johnson, Loretta C

    2017-10-01

    Phenotypic distribution within species can vary widely across environmental gradients but forecasts of species' responses to environmental change often assume species respond homogenously across their ranges. We compared predictions from species and phenotype distribution models under future climate scenarios for Andropogon gerardii, a widely distributed, dominant grass found throughout the central United States. Phenotype data on aboveground biomass, height, leaf width, and chlorophyll content were obtained from 33 populations spanning a ~1000 km gradient that encompassed the majority of the species' environmental range. Species and phenotype distribution models were trained using current climate conditions and projected to future climate scenarios. We used permutation procedures to infer the most important variable for each model. The species-level response to climate was most sensitive to maximum temperature of the hottest month, but phenotypic variables were most sensitive to mean annual precipitation. The phenotype distribution models predict that A. gerardii could be largely functionally eliminated from where this species currently dominates, with biomass and height declining by up to ~60% and leaf width by ~20%. By the 2070s, the core area of highest suitability for A. gerardii is projected to shift up to ~700 km northeastward. Further, short-statured phenotypes found in the present-day short grass prairies on the western periphery of the species' range will become favored in the current core ~800 km eastward of their current location. Combined, species and phenotype models predict this currently dominant prairie grass will decline in prevalence and stature. Thus, sourcing plant material for grassland restoration and forage should consider changes in the phenotype that will be favored under future climate conditions. Phenotype distribution models account for the role of intraspecific variation in determining responses to anticipated climate change and

  7. Early silicification of leaves and roots of seedlings of a panicoid grass grown under different conditions: anatomical relations and structural role.

    PubMed

    Fernández Honaine, M; Benvenuto, M L; Borrelli, N L; Osterrieth, M

    2016-11-01

    Grasses accumulate high amounts of silica deposits in tissues of all their organs, especially at mature stage. However, when and under which conditions do grass seedlings begin to produce these silica deposits and their relation with anatomy and development is little known. Here we investigated the silicification process in the first leaves and roots of seedlings of Bothriochloa laguroides grown in different substrate and Si treatments. The distribution and content of silica deposits in the organs of the seedlings grown under different conditions were analyzed through staining techniques and SEM-EDAX analyses. Leaf silica deposits were accumulated 3-4 days after the first leaf emergence, also under low silica solution (0.17-0.2 mM). Their location was mainly restricted to short costal cells from basal sectors, and scarcely in trichomes and xylem at tips. Silica content in leaves increased with the age of the seedlings. Roots presented dome-shaped silica aggregates, between 4-12 μm of diameter, located in the inner tangential wall of endodermal cells and similar to those produced at maturity. Silicification begins early in the first photosynthetic leaf, and silica distribution is opposite to that found in mature plants, mainly restricted to basal sectors, probably acting as a reinforcing element. The fast incorporation of solid amorphous silica in leaves and roots, may be useful for farm applications in species that are Si-fertilized. © 2016 German Botanical Society and The Royal Botanical Society of the Netherlands.

  8. Quantitative Analysis of Plant Consumption and Preference by Oedaleus asiaticus (Acrididae: Oedipodinae) in Changed Plant Communities Consisting of Three Grass Species.

    PubMed

    Huang, X; McNeill, M; Zhang, Z

    2016-02-01

    We used Oedaleus asiaticus Bey-Bienko (Acrididae: Oedipodinae) as a model species to examine how plant community composition influenced grasshopper population densities and feeding habits. Our results show that in the Xinli Gol Grassland ecosystem, both plant community composition and grasshopper density vary considerably over fairly small distances, and that O. asiaticus density was directly related to the proportional abundance of specific plant species. A 60-d field-cage study showed that O. asiaticus food preference and consumption differed when the ratios of three dominant grass species (Leymus chinensis (Trin.) Tzvel, Stipa krylovii Roshev, and Cleistogenes squarrosa (Trin.) Keng) differed. The consumption of both S. krylovii and C. squarrosa increased with a corresponding increase in their respective biomass availability. Although O. asiaticus preferred S. krylovii and ate only small amounts of L. chinensis, a specific amount of L. chinensis was always consumed. Feeding of these three plant species could be divided into three levels based on diet selectivity index (SI), with O. asiaticus showing a strong preference for S. krylovii (SI > 1), over that for C. squarrosa (0.5 < SI ≤ 1), and a low acceptance for L. chinensis (0 < SI ≤ 0.5). Plant consumption and preference by O. asiaticus was in decreasing order S. krylovii>C. squarrosa>L. chinensis. This study shows that small-scale changes in plant community composition can have large affects on grasshopper diets and populations. As such, this study is useful for developing guidelines for the monitoring of O. asiaticus impacts against the background of vegetation succession and changing plant communities in response to grazing or human activities.

  9. Grass Lignocellulose

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Akin, Danny E.

    Grass lignocelluloses are limited in bioconversion by aromatic constituents, which include both lignins and phenolic acids esters. Histochemistry, ultraviolet absorption microspectrophotometry, and response to microorganisms and specific enzymes have been used to determine the significance of aromatics toward recalcitrance. Coniferyl lignin appears to be the most effective limitation to biodegradation, existing in xylem cells of vascular tissues; cell walls with syringyl lignin, for example, leaf sclerenchyma, are less recalcitrant. Esterified phenolic acids, i.e., ferulic and p-coumaric acids, often constitute a major chemical limitation in nonlignified cell walls to biodegradation in grasses, especially warm-season species. Methods to improve biodegradability through modification of aromatics include: plant breeding, use of lignin-degrading white-rot fungi, and addition of esterases. Plant breeding for new cultivars has been especially effective for nutritionally improved forages, for example, bermudagrasses. In laboratory studies, selective white-rot fungi that lack cellulases delignified the lignocellulosic materials and improved fermentation of residual carbohydrates. Phenolic acid esterases released p-coumaric and ferulic acids for potential coproducts, improved the available sugars for fermentation, and improved biodegradation. The separation and removal of the aromatic components for coproducts, while enhancing the availability of sugars for bioconversion, could improve the economics of bioconversion.

  10. Identifying biochemical phenotypic differences between cryptic species

    PubMed Central

    Liebeke, Manuel; Bruford, Michael W.; Donnelly, Robert K.; Ebbels, Timothy M. D.; Hao, Jie; Kille, Peter; Lahive, Elma; Madison, Rachael M.; Morgan, A. John; Pinto-Juma, Gabriela A.; Spurgeon, David J.; Svendsen, Claus; Bundy, Jacob G.

    2014-01-01

    Molecular genetic methods can distinguish divergent evolutionary lineages in what previously appeared to be single species, but it is not always clear what functional differences exist between such cryptic species. We used a metabolomic approach to profile biochemical phenotype (metabotype) differences between two putative cryptic species of the earthworm Lumbricus rubellus. There were no straightforward metabolite biomarkers of lineage, i.e. no metabolites that were always at higher concentration in one lineage. Multivariate methods, however, identified a small number of metabolites that together helped distinguish the lineages, including uncommon metabolites such as Nε-trimethyllysine, which is not usually found at high concentrations. This approach could be useful for characterizing functional trait differences, especially as it is applicable to essentially any species group, irrespective of its genome sequencing status. PMID:25252836

  11. Identifying biochemical phenotypic differences between cryptic species.

    PubMed

    Liebeke, Manuel; Bruford, Michael W; Donnelly, Robert K; Ebbels, Timothy M D; Hao, Jie; Kille, Peter; Lahive, Elma; Madison, Rachael M; Morgan, A John; Pinto-Juma, Gabriela A; Spurgeon, David J; Svendsen, Claus; Bundy, Jacob G

    2014-09-01

    Molecular genetic methods can distinguish divergent evolutionary lineages in what previously appeared to be single species, but it is not always clear what functional differences exist between such cryptic species. We used a metabolomic approach to profile biochemical phenotype (metabotype) differences between two putative cryptic species of the earthworm Lumbricus rubellus. There were no straightforward metabolite biomarkers of lineage, i.e. no metabolites that were always at higher concentration in one lineage. Multivariate methods, however, identified a small number of metabolites that together helped distinguish the lineages, including uncommon metabolites such as Nε-trimethyllysine, which is not usually found at high concentrations. This approach could be useful for characterizing functional trait differences, especially as it is applicable to essentially any species group, irrespective of its genome sequencing status. © 2014 The Author(s) Published by the Royal Society. All rights reserved.

  12. Two grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idella) insulin-like growth factor-binding protein 5 genes exhibit different yet conserved functions in development and growth.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Guo-Dong; Zhou, Chun-Xue; Lin, Si-Tong; Chen, Jie; Jiang, Xia-Yun; Zou, Shu-Ming

    2017-02-01

    Insulin-like growth factor binding-protein 5 (igfbp5), the most conserved member of the IGFBP family in vertebrates, plays a critical role in controlling cell survival, growth, differentiation, and apoptosis. Here, we characterized the expression patterns of igfbp5a and igfbp5b in grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idella), which are retained in many fish species, likely from the teleost-specific whole-genome duplication. Both igfbp5a and igfbp5b encode 268- and 263-aa peptides, respectively, which share a sequence identity of 71%. Their mRNAs are not detected in zygotes. At 14hpf, grass carp igfbp5b mRNA was detected in the somites, while igfbp5a mRNA has some possible signal around the eye and head region. At 24hpf, both igfbp5a and igfbp5b mRNA appear to be limited to the presomitic mesoderm. At 36hpf, igfbp5a mRNA was only detected in the midbrain, while igfbp5b mRNA was detected in both the midbrain and notochord. Overall, both mRNAs were expressed in most adult tissues. igfbp5a and igfbp5b were significantly upregulated in the muscle and liver after injection of 10μg per kilogram body weight of zebrafish growth hormone (zGH), while their hepatic expression was downregulated by 50μg zGH. During fasting, both igfbp5a and igfbp5b mRNAs were significantly downregulated in the muscle but upregulated in the liver. Collectively, the results suggest that the two igfbp5 genes play important but different roles in the regulation of growth and development in grass carp. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. Comparative Proteomic Analysis of the Stolon Cold Stress Response between the C4 Perennial Grass Species Zoysia japonica and Zoysia metrella

    PubMed Central

    Xuan, Jiping; Song, Yufeng; Zhang, Hongxiao; Liu, Jianxiu; Guo, Zhongren; Hua, Yuelou

    2013-01-01

    Zoysiagrass, the most cold-tolerant grass among the warm-season turfgrasses, is often used as a model species for isolating cellular components related to cold stress. To understand the proteomic responses to cold stress in zoysiagrass stolons, we extracted stolon proteins from Zoysiajaponica, cv. Meyer (cold-tolerant) and Z. metrella, cv. Diamond (cold-sensitive), which were grown with or without cold treatment. Approximately 700 proteins were resolved on 2-DE gels, and 70 protein spots were differentially accumulated. We further observed that 45 of the identified proteins participate in 10 metabolic pathways and cellular processes. A significantly greater number of proteins accumulated in the Meyer than in the Diamond and 15 increased proteins were detected only in the Meyer cultivar under cold stress. Furthermore, we propose a cold stress-responsive protein network composed of several different functional components that exhibits a balance between reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and scavenging, accelerated protein biosynthesis and proteolysis, reduced protein folding, enhanced photosynthesis, abundant energy supply and enhanced biosynthesis of carbohydrates and nucleotides. Generally, the cold-tolerant Meyer cultivar showed a greater ROS scavenging ability, more abundant energy supply and increased photosynthesis and protein synthesis than did the cold-sensitive Diamond cultivar, which may partly explain why Meyer is more cold tolerant. PMID:24086619

  14. Comparative proteomic analysis of the stolon cold stress response between the C4 perennial grass species Zoysia japonica and Zoysia metrella.

    PubMed

    Xuan, Jiping; Song, Yufeng; Zhang, Hongxiao; Liu, Jianxiu; Guo, Zhongren; Hua, Yuelou

    2013-01-01

    Zoysiagrass, the most cold-tolerant grass among the warm-season turfgrasses, is often used as a model species for isolating cellular components related to cold stress. To understand the proteomic responses to cold stress in zoysiagrass stolons, we extracted stolon proteins from Zoysiajaponica, cv. Meyer (cold-tolerant) and Z. metrella, cv. Diamond (cold-sensitive), which were grown with or without cold treatment. Approximately 700 proteins were resolved on 2-DE gels, and 70 protein spots were differentially accumulated. We further observed that 45 of the identified proteins participate in 10 metabolic pathways and cellular processes. A significantly greater number of proteins accumulated in the Meyer than in the Diamond and 15 increased proteins were detected only in the Meyer cultivar under cold stress. Furthermore, we propose a cold stress-responsive protein network composed of several different functional components that exhibits a balance between reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and scavenging, accelerated protein biosynthesis and proteolysis, reduced protein folding, enhanced photosynthesis, abundant energy supply and enhanced biosynthesis of carbohydrates and nucleotides. Generally, the cold-tolerant Meyer cultivar showed a greater ROS scavenging ability, more abundant energy supply and increased photosynthesis and protein synthesis than did the cold-sensitive Diamond cultivar, which may partly explain why Meyer is more cold tolerant.

  15. Dissipation of sulfamethazine and tetracycline in the root zone of grass and tree species.

    PubMed

    Lin, Chung-Ho; Goyne, Keith W; Kremer, Robert J; Lerch, Robert N; Garrett, Harold E

    2010-01-01

    The detection of veterinary antibiotics (VAs) in drinking water resources resulting from manure disposal operations has raised public health concerns. Previous studies have demonstrated the benefits of using multispecies vegetated buffer strips (VBS) to reduce agrichemical transport from agroecosystems. However, VA fate and subsequent effects of VAs on microbial activities in the root zone ofVBS have not been well documented. A growth chamber study was conducted to investigate dissipation of two commonly administered VAs, sulfamethazine (SMZ) and tetracycline (TC), and the relationship between VA dissipation and soil enzyme activities in the root zone of selected plant species. Switchgrass, eastern gammagrass, orchardgrass, and a hybrid poplar tree were grown in pots containing a Mexico silt loam/sand mixture for 3 mo, followed by plant biomass removal and collection of root zone soil. Radiolabeled (3H) SMZ or TC was applied to the soils and samples were incubated in the dark for 5 wk. Among the plant species studied, hybrid poplar showed enhanced capability for promoting SMZ dissipation. The half-lives of SMZ in soil planted to the poplar tree were significantly reduced by the enhanced enzymatic activity. Comparison of soil enzymatic activities between the antibiotic treatments revealed that fluorescein diacetate hydrolytic and glucosaminidase enzyme activities were significantly lower in TC-treated soils than in SMZ-treated soils. The beta-glucosidase activities were similar between the two VA treatments. Correlation analyses showed that the half-life of SMZ in the soil was negatively correlated with enzymatic activity. Enhanced SMZ dissipation in soil planted to hybrid poplar suggests that incorporation of this plant species in VBS may mitigate deleterious effects of SMZ in the environment.

  16. Grass species influence on plant N uptake - Determination of atmospheric N deposition to a semi-natural peat bog site using a 15N labelling approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hurkuck, Miriam; Brümmer, Christian; Spott, Oliver; Flessa, Heinz; Kutsch, Werner L.

    2014-05-01

    Large areas of natural peat bogs in Northwestern Germany have been converted to arable land and were subjected to draining and peat cutting in the past. The few protected peatland areas remaining are affected by high nitrogen (N) deposition. Our study site - a moderately drained raised bog - is surrounded by highly fertilized agricultural land and livestock production. In this study, we used a 15N pool dilution technique called 'Integrated Total Nitrogen Input' (ITNI) to quantify annual deposition of atmospheric N into biomonitoring pots over a two-year period. Since it considers direct N uptake by plants, it was expected to result in higher N input than conventional methods for determination of N deposition (e.g. micrometeorological approaches, bulk N samplers). Using Lolium multiflorum and Eriophorum vaginatum as monitor plants and low, medium and high levels of fertilization, we aimed to simulate increasing N deposition to planted pots and to allocate airborne N after its uptake by the soil-plant system in aboveground biomass, roots and soil. Increasing N fertilization was positively correlated with biomass production of Eriophorum vaginatum, whereas atmospheric plant N uptake decreased and highest airborne N input of 899.8 ± 67.4 µg N d-1 pot-1 was found for low N fertilization. In contrast, Lolium multiflorum showed a clear dependency of N supply on plant N uptake and was highest (688.7 ± 41.4 µg N d-1 pot-1) for highly fertilized vegetation pots. Our results suggest that grass species respond differently to increasing N input. While crop grasses such as Lolium multiflorum take up N according to N availability, species adopted to nutrient-limited conditions like Eriophorum vaginatum show N saturation effects with increasing N supply. Total airborne N input ranged from about 24 to 66 kg N ha-1 yr-1 dependent on the used indicator plant and the amount of added fertilizer. Parallel determination of atmospheric N deposition using a micrometeorological approach

  17. Flavonoid concentrations in three grass species and a sedge grown in the field and under controlled environment conditions in response to enhanced UV-B radiation.

    PubMed

    van de Staaij, J; de Bakker, N V J; Oosthoek, A; Broekman, R; van Beem, A; Stroetenga, M; Aerts, R; Rozema, J

    2002-02-01

    An investigation was carried out to find whether enhanced levels of UV-B radiation induce increased concentrations of flavonoids in the leaves of the grass species Deschampsia antarctica, Deschampsia borealis and Calamagrostis epigeios and the sedge Carex arenaria. Whether the enhanced levels of UV-B influenced the proportions of the various flavonoids in the leaves was also studied. Increased flavonoid concentrations would improve the UV-B shielding of UV-B susceptible tissues. Using HPLC analysis the flavonoids orientin and luteolin were identified in D. antarctica, orientin in D. borealis and tricin in C. arenaria. Neither flavonoid concentrations nor the proportion of the various flavonoids in climate room grown D. antarctica and D. borealis plants differed between individuals grown under 0, ambient or elevated UV-B levels. After 12 weeks of growth biomass production and shoot-to-root ratios of D. antarctica were not affected by elevated UV-B radiation. Greenhouse grown C. epigeios plants contained higher concentrations and different proportions of flavonoids grown under elevated levels of UV-B than when grown under ambient or 0 UV-B. In C. epigeios plants grown in their natural habitat in the field under ambient or elevated levels of UV-B, flavonoid concentrations and proportions were the same in plants from both treatments. In the leaves of the sedge C. arenaria grown in a greenhouse flavonoid concentrations and proportions were not affected by UV-B radiation. Leaves were harvested four times during the growing season from C. arenaria plants grown in their natural habitat in the field under ambient or elevated levels of UV-B. Leaves harvested in January contained higher concentrations of flavonoids when grown under elevated UV-B than when grown under ambient UV-B radiation. In leaves harvested in May, September and December flavonoid concentrations were the same in plants grown under ambient or elevated UV-B. The proportion of the different flavonoids was the

  18. The Physical and Biochemical Alteration of the Platte River by Phragmites australis, an Invasive Species of Wetland Grass

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mohr, R. C.; Krueger, R.; Triplett, L.; Michal, T.; Kettenring, K. M.

    2014-12-01

    Invasive species can have a profound impact on the ecosystems to which they are introduced. Beginning in 2003, the Platte River, Nebraska, USA, was invaded by an aggressive species of wetland grass, Phragmites australis. The invasion by Phragmites, in combination with river flow reductions due to agricultural irrigation, has drastically altered the character and morphology of the river. Once a braided and largely unvegetated river, the Platte had become densely colonized with vegetation by 2010. We measured some physical and biochemical characteristics of Platte River sediments to infer how that vegetation has changed the system. Specifically, we measured particle size, which is an indicator of flow velocity, and biogenic silica (BSi), which is a critical source of silicon for some aquatic organisms. Sediment was collected from areas of the riverbed that are unvegetated, and from areas that are occupied by Phragmites or native vegetation. Particle size was measured using a laser diffractometer to determine how much fine particle deposition was occurring. Biogenic silica (BSi) concentrations were measured using timed NaOH digestions and inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Our results indicate that stands of Phragmites in the Platte River cause more deposition of finer silt-sized particles than other parts of the river that are unvegetated or are occupied by native vegetation. Also, Phragmites increased the sequestration of BSi in the river sediments. These changes to the Platte reverberate beyond the river itself; by sequestering silica in sediments, Phragmites could be diminishing the supply of silica to estuaries and coastal oceans. Hypothesizing that the silica content of the Platte's water had been reduced by the arrival of Phragmites, we measured dissolved (DSi) and biogenic silica (BSi) concentrations of Platte water using ICP-MS to compare to existing data from the 1990s.

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

    PubMed Central

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

    2014-01-01

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

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

    PubMed

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

    2014-01-01

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

  1. Competition between a Lawn-Forming Cynodon dactylon and a Tufted Grass Species Hyparrhenia hirta on a South-African Dystrophic Savanna.

    PubMed

    Zwerts, J A; Prins, H H T; Bomhoff, D; Verhagen, I; Swart, J M; de Boer, W F

    2015-01-01

    South African savanna grasslands are often characterised by indigestible tufted grass species whereas lawn grasses are far more desirable in terms of herbivore sustenance. We aimed to investigate the role of nutrients and/or the disturbance (grazing, trampling) by herbivores on the formation of grazing lawns. We conducted a series of common garden experiments to test the effect of nutrients on interspecific competition between a typical lawn-forming grass species (Cynodon dactylon) and a species that is frequently found outside grazing lawns (Hyparrhenia hirta), and tested for the effect of herbivore disturbance in the form of trampling and clipping. We also performed a vegetation and herbivore survey to apply experimentally derived insights to field observations. Our results showed that interspecific competition was not affected by soil nutrient concentrations. C. dactylon did show much more resilience to disturbance than H. hirta, presumably due to the regenerative capacity of its rhizomes. Results from the field survey were in line with these findings, describing a correlation between herbivore pressure and C. dactylon abundance. We conclude that herbivore disturbance, and not soil nutrients, provide C. dactylon with a competitive advantage over H. hirta, due to vegetative regeneration from its rhizomes. This provides evidence for the importance of concentrated, high herbivore densities for the creation and maintenance of grazing lawns.

  2. Competition between a Lawn-Forming Cynodon dactylon and a Tufted Grass Species Hyparrhenia hirta on a South-African Dystrophic Savanna

    PubMed Central

    Zwerts, J. A.; Prins, H. H. T.; Bomhoff, D.; Verhagen, I.; Swart, J. M.; de Boer, W. F.

    2015-01-01

    South African savanna grasslands are often characterised by indigestible tufted grass species whereas lawn grasses are far more desirable in terms of herbivore sustenance. We aimed to investigate the role of nutrients and/or the disturbance (grazing, trampling) by herbivores on the formation of grazing lawns. We conducted a series of common garden experiments to test the effect of nutrients on interspecific competition between a typical lawn-forming grass species (Cynodon dactylon) and a species that is frequently found outside grazing lawns (Hyparrhenia hirta), and tested for the effect of herbivore disturbance in the form of trampling and clipping. We also performed a vegetation and herbivore survey to apply experimentally derived insights to field observations. Our results showed that interspecific competition was not affected by soil nutrient concentrations. C. dactylon did show much more resilience to disturbance than H. hirta, presumably due to the regenerative capacity of its rhizomes. Results from the field survey were in line with these findings, describing a correlation between herbivore pressure and C. dactylon abundance. We conclude that herbivore disturbance, and not soil nutrients, provide C. dactylon with a competitive advantage over H. hirta, due to vegetative regeneration from its rhizomes. This provides evidence for the importance of concentrated, high herbivore densities for the creation and maintenance of grazing lawns. PMID:26510157

  3. Evaluation of methodological aspects of digestibility measurements in ponies fed different grass hays.

    PubMed

    Schaafstra, F J W C; van Doorn, D A; Schonewille, J T; Wartena, F C; Zoon, M V; Blok, M C; Hendriks, W H

    2015-10-01

    Methodological aspects of digestibility measurements of feedstuffs for equines were studied in four Welsh pony geldings consuming four grass-hay diets in a 4 × 4 Latin square design. Diets contained either a low (L), medium (M), high (H), or very high (VH) ADF content (264, 314, 375, or 396 g·kg DM, respectively). Diets were supplemented with minerals, vitamins, and TiO (3.9 g Ti·d). Daily feces excreted were collected quantitatively over 10 consecutive days and analyzed for moisture, ash, ADL, AIA, and titanium (Ti). Minimum duration of total fecal collection (TFC) required for an accurate estimation of apparent organic matter digestibility (OMD) of grass hay was assessed. Based on literature and the calculated cumulative OMD assessed over 10 consecutive days of TFC, a minimum duration of at least 5 consecutive days of fecal collection is recommended for accurate estimation of dry matter digestibility (DMD) and OMD in ponies. The 5-d collection should be preceded by a 14-d adaptation period to allow the animals to adapt to the diets and become accustomed to the collection procedures. Mean fecal recovery over 10 d across diets for ADL, AIA, and Ti was 93.1% (SE 1.9), 98.9% (SE 5.5), and 97.1% (SE 1.8), respectively. Evaluation of CV of mean fecal recoveries obtained by ADL, AIA, and Ti showed that variation in fecal Ti (6.8) and ADL excretion (7.0) was relatively low compared to AIA (12.3). In conclusion, the use of internal ADL and externally supplemented Ti are preferred as markers to be used in digestibility trials in equine fed grass-hay diets.

  4. Species differences in the metabolism of benzene.

    PubMed Central

    Henderson, R F

    1996-01-01

    The pathways of metabolism of benzene appear to be qualitatively similar in all species studied thus far. However, there are quantitative differences in the fraction of benzene metabolized by the different pathways. These species differences become important for risk assessments based on animal data. Mice have a greater overall capacity to metabolize benzene than rats or primates, based on mass balance studies conducted in vivo using radiolabled benzene. Mice and monkeys metabolize more of the benzene to hydroquinone metabolites than do rats or chimpanzees, especially at low doses. Nonhuman primates metabolize less of the benzene to muconic acid than do rodents or humans. In all species studied, a greater proportion of benzene is converted to hydroquinone and ring-breakage metabolites at low doses than at high doses. This finding should be considered in attempting to extrapolate the toxicity of benzene observed at high doses to predicted toxicity at low doses. Because ring-breakage metabolites and hydroquinone have both been implicated in the toxicity of benzene, the higher formation of those metabolites in the mouse may partially explain why mice are more sensitive to benzene than are rats. Metabolism of benzene in humans, the species of interest, does not exactly mimic that of any animal species studied. More information on the urinary and blood metabolites of occupationally exposed people is required to determine the fractional conversion of benzene to putative toxic metabolites and the degree of variability present in human subjects. PMID:9118889

  5. Experimental determination of vertical uprooting resistance for grass species used in flume experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Edmaier, K.; Crouzy, B.; Ennos, R.; Burlando, P.; Perona, P.

    2012-12-01

    Vegetation affects river morphodynamics by contributing to the stabilization of alluvial sediment via the root system. The survival and establishment of riparian pioneer vegetation on river bars and islands is determined by timescales of vegetation growth and flood interarrival times. Several laboratory experiments have investigated the role of vegetation in river morphodynamics but none of those has quantied the forces involved to produce uprooting of growing plants. Thus, parallel analyses on root resistance to uprooting are needed. In this work we investigate the uprooting resistance of young vegetation in laboratory experiments, where we vertically uprooted seedlings of Avena sativa and Medicago sativa. Uprooting force and work were related to the root structure (root length, number of roots, root tortuosity) and environmental conditions (grain size, saturation). We found the uprooting work of both species to follow a power law relation with the total root length which was found to be the main driving factor of the process. In addition, the number of roots was found to increase uprooting work. For similar total root length, the multi-root system of Avena sativa shows greater uprooting resistance in terms of work than the single-root system of Medicago sativa. Less sediment saturation produces higher uprooting forces and favors root breaking. Smaller sediment sizes lead to a higher uprooting resistance than bigger ones. Nevertheless, both saturation and grain size showed minor influence on the uprooting process compared to root characteristics. From measured uprooting forces of Avena sativa grown on sediment with a grain size distribution similar to that used in the flume experiments of Perona et al. (2012) we computed the ensemble probability of Avena sativa being uprooted by a particular drag force at certain growth stages, allowing us to compute a probability distribution of being uprooted in dependence of the root length and thus experimentally assess the

  6. Population structure in the model grass Brachypodium distachyon is highly correlated with flowering differences across broad geographic areas

    DOE PAGES

    Tyler, Ludmila; Lee, Scott J.; Young, Nelson D.; ...

    2016-04-29

    The small, annual grass Brachypodium distachyon (L.) Beauv., a close relative of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) and barley (Hordeum vulgare L.), is a powerful model system for cereals and bioenergy grasses. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of natural variation can elucidate the genetic basis of complex traits but have been so far limited in B. distachyon by the lack of large numbers of well-characterized and sufficiently diverse accessions. Here, we report on genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) of 84 B. distachyon, seven B. hybridum, and three B. stacei accessions with diverse geographic origins including Albania, Armenia, Georgia, Italy, Spain, and Turkey. Over 90,000 high-qualitymore » single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) distributed across the Bd21 reference genome were identified. Our results confirm the hybrid nature of the B. hybridum genome, which appears as a mosaic of B. distachyon-like and B. stacei-like sequences. Analysis of more than 50,000 SNPs for the B. distachyon accessions revealed three distinct, genetically defined populations. Surprisingly, these genomic profiles are associated with differences in flowering time rather than with broad geographic origin. High levels of differentiation in loci associated with floral development support the differences in flowering phenology between B. distachyon populations. Genome-wide association studies combining genotypic and phenotypic data also suggest the presence of one or more photoperiodism, circadian clock, and vernalization genes in loci associated with flowering time variation within B. distachyon populations. As a result, our characterization elucidates genes underlying population differences, expands the germplasm resources available for Brachypodium, and illustrates the feasibility and limitations of GWAS in this model grass.« less

  7. Leaf Vascular Systems in C3 and C4 Grasses: A Two-dimensional Analysis

    PubMed Central

    UENO, OSAMU; KAWANO, YUKIKO; WAKAYAMA, MASATAKA; TAKEDA, TOMOSHIRO

    2006-01-01

    • Background and Aims It is well documented that C4 grasses have a shorter distance between longitudinal veins in the leaves than C3 grasses. In grass leaves, however, veins with different structures and functions are differentiated: large longitudinal veins, small longitudinal veins and transverse veins. Thus, the densities of the three types of vein in leaves of C3 and C4 grasses were investigated from a two-dimensional perspective. • Methods Vein densities in cleared leaves of 15 C3 and 26 C4 grasses representing different taxonomic groups and photosynthetic subtypes were analysed. • Key Results The C4 grasses had denser transverse veins and denser small longitudinal veins than the C3 grasses (1·9 and 2·1 times in interveinal distance), but there was no significant difference in large longitudinal veins. The total length of the three vein types per unit area in the C4 grasses was 2·1 times that in the C3 grasses. The ratio of transverse vein length to total vein length was 14·3 % in C3 grasses and 9·9 % in C4 grasses. The C3 grasses generally had greater species variation in the vascular distances than the C4 grasses. The bambusoid and panicoid C3 grasses tended to have a denser vascular system than the festucoid C3 grasses. There were no significant differences in the interveinal distances of the three vein types between C4 subtypes, although the NADP-malic enzyme grasses tended to have a shorter distance between small longitudinal veins than the NAD-malic enzyme and phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase grasses. • Conclusions It seems that C4 grasses have structurally a superior photosynthate translocation and water distribution system by developing denser networks of small longitudinal and transverse veins, while keeping a constant density of large longitudinal veins. The bambusoid and panicoid C3 grasses have a vascular system that is more similar to that in C4 grasses than to that in the festucoid C3 grasses. PMID:16464879

  8. A high-throughput Agrobacterium-mediated transformation system for the grass model species Brachypodium distachyon L.

    PubMed

    Păcurar, Daniel Ioan; Thordal-Christensen, Hans; Nielsen, Klaus Kristian; Lenk, Ingo

    2008-10-01

    In the ongoing process of developing Brachypodium distachyon as a model plant for temperate cereals and forage grasses, we have developed a high-throughput Agrobacterium-mediated transformation system for a diploid accession. Embryogenic callus, derived from immature embryos of the accession BDR018, were transformed with Agrobacterium tumefaciens strain AGL1 carrying two T-DNA plasmids, pDM805 and pWBV-Ds-Ubi-bar-Ds. Transient and stable transformation efficiencies were optimised by varying the pre-cultivation period, which had a strong effect on stable transformation efficiency. On average 55% of 17-day-old calli co-inoculated with Agrobacterium regenerated stable transgenic plants. Stable transformation frequencies of up to 80%, which to our knowledge is the highest transformation efficiency reported in graminaceous species, were observed. In a study of 177 transgenic lines transformed with pDM805, all of the regenerated transgenic lines were resistant to BASTA, while the gusA gene was expressed in 88% of the transgenic lines. Southern blot analysis revealed that 35% of the tested plants had a single T-DNA integration. Segregation analysis performed on progenies of ten selected T(0) plants indicated simple Mendelian inheritance of the two transgenes. Furthermore, the presence of two selection marker genes, bar and hpt, on the T-DNA of pWBV-Ds-Ubi-bar-Ds allowed us to characterize the developed transformation protocol with respect to full-length integration rate. Even when not selected for, full-length integration occurred in 97% of the transformants when using bialaphos as selection agent.

  9. Species differences in pharmacokinetics and drug teratogenesis.

    PubMed Central

    Nau, H

    1986-01-01

    Interspecies differences in regard to the teratogenicity of drugs can be the result of differing pharmacokinetic processes that determine the crucial concentration-time relationships in the embryo. Maternal absorption, as well as distribution, of the drugs does not usually show great species differences. The first-pass effect after oral application is often more pronounced in animals than man (e.g., valproic acid, 13-cis-retinoic acid), although in some cases the reverse was found (e.g., hydrolysis of valpromide). Existing differences can be adjusted by appropriate choice of the administration route and measurements of drug levels. Many variables determine the placental transfer of drugs: developmental stage, type of placenta, properties of the drug. Even closely related drugs (e.g., retinoids) may differ greatly in regard to placental transfer. Maternal protein binding is an important determinant of placental transfer, since only the free concentration in maternal plasma can equilibrate with the embryo during organogenesis; this parameter differs greatly across species (e.g., valproic acid: five times higher free fractions in mouse and hamster than in monkey and man). The metabolic pattern has not yet been demonstrated to be a major cause of species differences, although recent evidence on phenytoin and thalidomide support the hypothesis that some species differences can be the result of differing activation/deactivation pathways. Laboratory animals usually have a much higher rate of drug elimination than man. Drastic drug level fluctuations are therefore present during teratogenicity testing in animals, but not to the same degree in human therapy. It must, therefore, be investigated if peak concentrations (such as for valproic acid and possibly caffeine) or the area under the concentration-time curve (AUC) (such as for cyclophosphamide and possibly retinoids) correlate with the teratogenic response. Only then is a rational and scientific basis for interspecies

  10. Seasonal and Maturity Effects on Forage Quality of Alfalfa and Grasses

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Relationships among maturity, yield, and quality have been widely documented in alfalfa and temperate grasses. Studies conducted at multiple locations determined the rate of change for different harvest periods and for different grass species. Alfalfa was harvested in the spring, early summer, lat...

  11. Predicting timothy mineral concentrations, dietary cation-anion difference, and grass tetany index by near-infrared reflectance spectroscopy.

    PubMed

    Tremblay, G F; Nie, Z; Bélanger, G; Pelletier, S; Allard, G

    2009-09-01

    The mineral concentration of forage grasses plays a significant role in 2 metabolic disorders in dairy cattle production, namely, hypocalcemia (milk fever) and hypomagnesemia (grass tetany). Risks of occurrence of these 2 metabolic disorders can be evaluated by determining the dietary cation-anion difference (DCAD) and the grass tetany (GT) index of forages and specific rations. The objective of this study was to evaluate the feasibility of predicting timothy (Phleum pratense L.) mineral concentrations of Na, K, Ca, Mg, Cl, S, and P, the DCAD, and the GT index by near-infrared reflectance spectroscopy (NIRS). Timothy samples (n = 1,108) were scanned using NIRS and analyzed for the concentration of 7 mineral elements. Calculations of the DCAD were made using 3 different formulas, and the GT index was also calculated. Samples were divided into calibration (n = 240) and validation (n = 868) sets. The calibration, cross-validation, and prediction for mineral concentrations, the DCAD, and the GT index were performed using modified partial least squares regression. Concentrations of K, Ca, Mg, Cl, and P were successfully predicted with coefficients of determination of prediction (R(P)2) of 0.69 to 0.92 and coefficients of variation of prediction (CV(P)) ranging from 6.6 to 11.4%. The prediction of Na and S concentrations failed, with respective R(P)2 of 0.58 and 0.53 and CV(P) of 82.2 and 12.9%. The 3 calculated DCAD and the GT index were predicted successfully, with R(P)2 >0.90 and CV(P) <20%. Our results confirm the feasibility of using NIRS to predict K, Ca, Mg, and Cl concentrations, as well as the DCAD and the GT index, in timothy.

  12. Synonymous codon usage, GC(3), and evolutionary patterns across plastomes of three pooid model species: emerging grass genome models for monocots.

    PubMed

    Sablok, Gaurav; Nayak, Kinshuk Chandra; Vazquez, Franck; Tatarinova, Tatiana V

    2011-10-01

    We have analyzed factors affecting the codon usage pattern of the chloroplasts genomes of representative species of pooid grass family. Correspondence analysis of relative synonymous codon usages (RSCU) showed that genes on secondary axis were correlated with their GC(3S) values (all r > 0.3, p < 0.05), indicating mutational bias as an important selective force that shaped the variation in the codon usage among chloroplast genes. The Nc-plot showed that although a majority of the points with low-Nc values were lying below the expected curve, a few genes lied on the expected curve. Nc plot clearly showed that mutational bias plays a major role in codon biology across the monocot plastomes. The hydrophobicity and aromaticity of encoded proteins of each species were found to be other factors of codon usage variation. In the view of above light, besides natural selection, several other factors also likely to be involved in determining the selective constraints on codon bias in plastomes of pooid grass genomes. In addition, five codons (B. distachyon), seven codons (H. vulgare), and four codons (T. aestivum) were identified as optimal codons of the three grass chloroplasts. To identify genes evolving under positive selection, rates of nonsynonymous substitutions (Ka) and synonymous substitutions (Ks) were computed for all groups of orthologous gene pairs.

  13. Comparative feedstock analysis in Setaria viridis L. as a model for C4 bioenergy grasses and Panicoid crop species.

    PubMed

    Petti, Carloalberto; Shearer, Andrew; Tateno, Mizuki; Ruwaya, Matthew; Nokes, Sue; Brutnell, Tom; Debolt, Seth

    2013-01-01

    Second generation feedstocks for bioethanol will likely include a sizable proportion of perennial C4 grasses, principally in the Panicoideae clade. The Panicoideae contain agronomically important annual grasses including Zea mays L. (maize), Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench (sorghum), and Saccharum officinarum L. (sugar cane) as well as promising second generation perennial feedstocks including Miscanthus×giganteus and Panicum virgatum L. (switchgrass). The underlying complexity of these polyploid grass genomes is a major limitation for their direct manipulation and thus driving a need for rapidly cycling comparative model. Setaria viridis (green millet) is a rapid cycling C4 panicoid grass with a relatively small and sequenced diploid genome and abundant seed production. Stable, transient, and protoplast transformation technologies have also been developed for Setaria viridis making it a potentially excellent model for other C4 bioenergy grasses. Here, the lignocellulosic feedstock composition, cellulose biosynthesis inhibitor response and saccharification dynamics of Setaria viridis are compared with the annual sorghum and maize and the perennial switchgrass bioenergy crops as a baseline study into the applicability for translational research. A genome-wide systematic investigation of the cellulose synthase-A genes was performed identifying eight candidate sequences. Two developmental stages; (a) metabolically active young tissue and (b) metabolically plateaued (mature) material are examined to compare biomass performance metrics.

  14. Comparative feedstock analysis in Setaria viridis L. as a model for C4 bioenergy grasses and Panicoid crop species

    PubMed Central

    Petti, Carloalberto; Shearer, Andrew; Tateno, Mizuki; Ruwaya, Matthew; Nokes, Sue; Brutnell, Tom; DeBolt, Seth

    2013-01-01

    Second generation feedstocks for bioethanol will likely include a sizable proportion of perennial C4 grasses, principally in the Panicoideae clade. The Panicoideae contain agronomically important annual grasses including Zea mays L. (maize), Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench (sorghum), and Saccharum officinarum L. (sugar cane) as well as promising second generation perennial feedstocks including Miscanthus×giganteus and Panicum virgatum L. (switchgrass). The underlying complexity of these polyploid grass genomes is a major limitation for their direct manipulation and thus driving a need for rapidly cycling comparative model. Setaria viridis (green millet) is a rapid cycling C4 panicoid grass with a relatively small and sequenced diploid genome and abundant seed production. Stable, transient, and protoplast transformation technologies have also been developed for Setaria viridis making it a potentially excellent model for other C4 bioenergy grasses. Here, the lignocellulosic feedstock composition, cellulose biosynthesis inhibitor response and saccharification dynamics of Setaria viridis are compared with the annual sorghum and maize and the perennial switchgrass bioenergy crops as a baseline study into the applicability for translational research. A genome-wide systematic investigation of the cellulose synthase-A genes was performed identifying eight candidate sequences. Two developmental stages; (a) metabolically active young tissue and (b) metabolically plateaued (mature) material are examined to compare biomass performance metrics. PMID:23802002

  15. Structural differences in the motor domain of temperature-associated myosin heavy chain isoforms from grass carp fast skeletal muscle.

    PubMed

    Tao, Yan; Wang, Sun-Yong; Liang, Chun-Shi; Fukushima, Hideto; Watabe, Shugo

    2009-10-01

    We determined coding sequences for three types of grass carp myosin subfragment-1 (S1) heavy chain by extending 5'-regions of the three known genes encoding light meromyosin isoforms (10 degrees C, intermediate and 30 degrees C types). The primary structures of these three S1 heavy chain isoforms showed 81.4%, 81.2%, and 97.8% identities between the 10 degrees C and intermediate types, between the 10 degrees C and 30 degrees C types, and between the intermediate and 30 degrees C types, respectively. Isoform-specific differences were clearly observed between the 10 degrees C type and the other two types in 97 amino acid residues. Furthermore, among these amino acid mutations, 51 mutations occurred at the conserved residue sites of S1 heavy chain from fish and homoiotherm. Additionally, the 10 degrees C type showed striking differences compared with the other two types in the two surface loops, loop 1 located near the ATP-binding pocket and loop 2, which is one of the actin-binding sites, suggesting that such structural differences possibly affect their motor functions. Interestingly, this 10 degrees C-type myosin heavy chain isolated from adult grass carp skeletal muscle was surprisingly similar to the embryonic fast-type myosin heavy chain from juvenile silver carp in the structure of S1 heavy chain, indicating that it may also function as embryonic fast-type myosin heavy chain in juvenile stage.

  16. Mineral Status in Cattle Fed Rice Straw and Para Grass Combined with Different Levels of Protein Derived from Cassava Foliage

    PubMed Central

    Sath, K.; Pauly, T.; Holtenius, K.

    2013-01-01

    Eight male cattle of the Local Yellow breed with an average live weight of 121 kg and an average age of 18 months were used to evaluate the effects of different levels of sun-dried cassava (Manihot esculenta) foliage supplementation on mineral metabolism in growing cattle fed rice straw and para grass as basal diet. Rice straw ad libitum and para grass (Brachiaria mutica) at 1% DM of BW comprised the basal diet. The study was arranged as a 4×4 double Latin square design, with cassava foliage contributing 0, 0.8, 1.6 or 2.4 g CP/kg BW. The cassava foliage intake was lower than the planned levels. DM consumption was significantly affected by cassava foliage supplementation, with the largest intake observed at the two highest levels of cassava foliage supplementation. Rice straw intake showed the opposite pattern, with lower intake at higher cassava foliage supplementation. No refusals occurred for para grass in any of the treatments. Ca, P, Mg, K, S and Mn intake increased significantly with increasing intake of cassava foliage, but Na intake was not affected by treatment. Faecal excretion of Ca, Mg, S and Mn increased significantly with increasing cassava foliage intake. There were no differences between P, K and Na excretion in faeces. There was a significant diet effect on Mg, S and Mn digestibility. Mg and Mn digestibility increased with increasing cassava foliage supplementation, while S digestibility decreased. Ca, P, K and Na digestibility was not affected by diet. There was a significant effect of treatment on P retention, with the highest value observed for supplementation with 1.6 g CP/kg BW cassava foliage. Ca and Mg showed similar trends, with the highest retention again for supplementation with 1.6 g CP/kg BW cassava foliage. There were weak but significant positive correlations between nitrogen retention and the macro minerals Ca, P and Mg. Furthermore, retention of all these minerals was positively correlated. Mineral losses in urine were not affected

  17. Greenhouse gas flux under warm-season perennial C4 grasses across different soil and climate gradients on the Islands of Hawaii

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pawlowski, M. N.; Crow, S. E.; Sumiyoshi, Y.; Wells, J.; Kikkawa, H. R.

    2011-12-01

    Agricultural soils can serve as either a sink or a source for atmospheric carbon (C) and other greenhouse gases (GHG). This is particularly true for tropical soils where influences from climate and soil gradients are wide ranging. Current estimates of GHG flux from soil are often under or overestimated due to high variability in sample sites and inconsistencies in land use and vegetation type, making extrapolation to new study systems difficult. This work aimed to identify patterns of trace fluxes of carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrous oxide (N2O) and methane (CH4) across two soil types and three species of warm season perennial C4 grasses: Pennisetum purpureum (Napier grass), Panicum maximum (Guinea grass) and Saccharum officinarum (sugar cane) on the islands of Oahu and Maui in Hawaii. Multiple static vented chambers were installed into replicate plots for each species; flux measurements were made during the growth, fertilization and harvest cycles at set time intervals for one hour and analyzed by gas chromatography. Initial results from Oahu indicate no significant differences in CO2 flux between the P. maximum and P. purpureum species after fertilization or at full growth. We observed an average flux of 143 mg m-2 h-1 and 155 mg m-2 h-1 for P. maximum and P. purpureum respectively at full growth for CO2 and 1.7 μg m-2 h-1and 0.3 μg m-2 h-1 for N2O. Additionally, N2O rates sampled after a typical fertilizer application were significantly greater than at full growth (p=0.0005) with flux rates of 25.2 μg m2h-1 and 30.3 μg m2h-1 for P. maximum and P. purpureum respectively. With a global warming potential of 310 for N2O, even short-term spikes following fertilizer application can cause long lasting effects of GHG emission from agricultural soils. CH4 flux was negligible for all species on the Oahu plots during these sample periods. Globally, water limitation is a major factor influencing the potential productivity of agricultural crops and the sustainability of

  18. Ruminal fermentation characteristics and microbial nitrogen assimilation in sheep fed differently composed grass silages.

    PubMed

    Seip, Katharina; Breves, Gerhard; Isselstein, Johannes; Daş, Gürbüz; Abel, Hansjörg

    2012-06-01

    The investigation aimed at examining if the composition of grassland silage affects the microbial nitrogen assimilation in the rumen of sheep. The silages were made of vegetative summer re-growths consisting of 48% grasses, 28% legumes and 24% other forbs (GCF) or of pure grass (G). Silage GCF contained more intermediately degradable non-structural and less slowly degradable carbohydrates, more crude protein (CP), a narrower ratio between slow and very slow degradable nitrogen (N), and exhibited higher in situ degradability of organic matter and CP than Silage G. Four adult wethers equipped with rumen fistulae were used in a two factorial trial. Feed was offered either as silage alone or as a mixture of silage and barley (60:40). Microbial N was estimated using continuous intraruminal 15N infusion and measurement of 15N-enrichment in microbes isolated from rumen liquor samples. With the exception of trends for ruminal butyrate concentrations, no interactions were detected between silage and barley feeding. Sheep receiving Silage GCF exhibited larger diurnal fluctuations of ammonia, and produced more microbial N (p < 0.05) than sheep on Silage G. Feeding the silages with barley decreased ruminal pH and elevated the concentrations of butyrate (p < 0.05). The 15N incorporation into microbial N was reduced by barley feeding (p < 0.05) along with a trend to accelerated rumen fluid turnover, resulting in similar microbial N yields as found in sheep receiving silage without barley. It is concluded that the larger and better balanced amounts of intermediately degradable carbohydrate- and N-containing fractions favoured the ruminal microbial protein synthesis in sheep consuming Silage GCF instead of Silage G.

  19. Establishment of non-native plant species after wildfires: Effects of fuel treatments, abiotic and biotic factors, and post-fire grass seeding treatments

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hunter, M.E.; Omi, Philip N.; Martinson, E.J.; Chong, G.W.

    2006-01-01

    Establishment and spread of non-native species following wildfires can pose threats to long-term native plant recovery. Factors such as disturbance severity, resource availability, and propagule pressure may influence where non-native species establish in burned areas. In addition, pre- and post-fire management activities may influence the likelihood of non-native species establishment. In the present study we examine the establishment of non-native species after wildfires in relation to native species richness, fire severity, dominant native plant cover, resource availability, and pre- and post-fire management actions (fuel treatments and post-fire rehabilitation treatments). We used an information-theoretic approach to compare alternative hypotheses. We analysed post-fire effects at multiple scales at three wildfires in Colorado and New Mexico. For large and small spatial scales at all fires, fire severity was the most consistent predictor of non-native species cover. Non-native species cover was also correlated with high native species richness, low native dominant species cover, and high seeded grass cover. There was a positive, but non-significant, association of non-native species with fuel-treated areas at one wildfire. While there may be some potential for fuels treatments to promote non-native species establishment, wildfire and post-fire seeding treatments seem to have a larger impact on non-native species. ?? IAWF 2006.

  20. Insect herbivory on C3 and C4 grasses.

    PubMed

    Boutton, Thomas W; Cameron, Guy N; Smith, Bruce N

    1978-01-01

    This study tested the hypothesis that grasses with the C4 photosynthetic pathway are avoided as a food source by insect herbivores in natural communities. Insects were sampled from ten pairs of C3-C4 grasses and their distributions analyzed by paired comparisons tests. Results showed no statistically significant differences in herbivore utilization of C3-C4 species. However, there was a trend towards heavier utilization of C3 species when means for both plant groups were compared. In particular, Homoptera and Diptera showed heavier usage of C3 plants. Significant correlations between insect abundances and plant protein levels suggest that herbivores respond to the higher protein content of C3 grasses. δ(13)C values for six of the most common grasshopper species in the study area indicated that three species fed on C3 plants, two species fed on C4 plants, and one species consumed a mixture of C3 and C4 tissue.

  1. Succession in inland sand ecosystems: which factors determine the occurrence of the tall grass species Calamagrostis epigejos (L.) Roth and Stipa capillata L.?

    PubMed

    Süss, K; Storm, C; Zehm, A; Schwabe, A

    2004-07-01

    In many successional series, grass species play an important role in mid-successional stages. Using calcareous sand ecosystems in the northern upper Rhine valley (Germany) as a model, we analyzed successional trajectories and the factors that determine their direction. A 5- to 7-year study of 23 permanent plots is presented. Polar ordination revealed that succession starts with pioneer communities (dominated by Corynephorus canescens and cryptogams) and can eventually lead to relatively stable Calamagrostis epigejos or Stipa capillata tall grass stands. At some sites, Cynodon dactylon can play a major role, but we focused on the two previously mentioned species. Gradient analyses of their ecological amplitudes by means of principal components and regression analysis were carried out in order to elucidate the factors determining the successional trajectories. Soil analyses of 71 plots established significantly positive linear relations for C. epigejos with respect to total nitrogen, extractable phosphate and potassium, as well as soil moisture indicator values. C. epigejos is not able to spread if the stress factors nutrient deficiency and dryness are combined. Lower tolerance limits are presented. In contrast, S. capillata shows negative relations to phosphate, declining strongly at P contents > 20 mg kg(-1). At a moisture indicator value of around 3.2 (indicating dry sites), S. capillata reaches its optimum. S. capillata is a model for a tall grass species which, even with low nutrient levels and dry soil conditions, can be successful in mid-successional phases; but it is displaced by C. epigejos if soil moisture increases or phosphate/potassium supply is higher. Regarding a general framework, the successional phases are characterized by processes such as replacement of species, facilitation, and inhibition. Copyright Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart

  2. Molecular aspects of flower development in grasses.

    PubMed

    Ciaffi, Mario; Paolacci, Anna Rita; Tanzarella, Oronzo Antonio; Porceddu, Enrico

    2011-12-01

    The grass family (Poaceae) of the monocotyledons includes about 10,000 species and represents one of the most important taxa among angiosperms. Their flower morphology is remarkably different from those of other monocotyledons and higher eudicots. The peculiar floral structure of grasses is the floret, which contains carpels and stamens, like eudicots, but lacks petals and sepals. The reproductive organs are surrounded by two lodicules, which correspond to eudicot petals, and by a palea and lemma, whose correspondence to eudicot organs remains controversial. The molecular and genetic analysis of floral morphogenesis and organ specification, primarily performed in eudicot model species, led to the ABCDE model of flower development. Several genes required for floral development in grasses correspond to class A, B, C, D, and E genes of eudicots, but others appear to have unique and diversified functions. In this paper, we outline the present knowledge on the evolution and diversification of grass genes encoding MIKC-type MADS-box transcription factors, based on information derived from studies in rice, maize, and wheat. Moreover, we review recent advances in studying the genes involved in the control of flower development and the extent of structural and functional conservation of these genes between grasses and eudicots.

  3. Adverse Events During Immunotherapy Against Grass Pollen-Induced Allergic Rhinitis - Differences Between Subcutaneous and Sublingual Treatment.

    PubMed

    Aasbjerg, Kristian; Dalhoff, Kim Peder; Backer, Vibeke

    2015-08-01

    Allergic rhinitis (AR) triggered by grass pollen is a common disease, affecting millions of people worldwide. Treatment consists of symptom-alleviating drugs, such as topical corticosteroids or antihistamines. Another option is potentially curative immunotherapy, currently available as sublingual and subcutaneous treatment. We investigated the potential differences in the prevalence and severity of adverse events related to subcutaneous and sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) against grass pollen-induced AR. A thorough literature search was performed with PubMed and EMBASE. The findings were compared with the available summaries of product characteristics (SPC) and with commercial pharmacology databases (Micromedex). The majority of available safety data originate from registered products of standardized allergens. A surprisingly large percentage of drugs, especially those used in the United States, have no systematically collected safety data. No sufficiently powered randomized trials comparing sublingual and subcutaneous immunotherapy (SCIT) were available, but general safety assessments indicate that sublingual tablet treatment is safer than subcutaneous treatment. Not all commonly used immunotherapy drugs are officially registered, and not all have systematically collected safety data. This is especially true for older drugs used in the United States. In contrast, newer drugs that have undergone extensive clinical testing have better documentation, but unified collection of safety data is still lacking. Considering the evidence available, most drugs elicit similar side effects from the same organ systems, and symptoms from the sublingual drug classes are probably less severe. However, a head-to-head comparison of safety and efficacy is lacking.

  4. The effect of ensiling and haymaking on the concentrations of steroidal saponin in two Brachiaria grass species

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Brachiaria (signalgrass) is now the most widely used tropical grass genus in Central and South America. However, Brachiaria spp. can cause hepatogenous photosensitization in livestock. Steroidal saponins, specifically protodioscin, present in Brachiaria spp. may be responsible for liver injury and s...

  5. Profiles of Nonstructural Carbohydrates, as a Function of Species and Extraction Method, in Four Cool-Season Forage Grasses

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Nonstructural carbohydrates (NSC) of forage grasses, particularly long-chain fructans, have been proposed as the causal agent of equine laminitis. In order to evaluate the correlation between NSC and laminitis, NSC must be quantified in the forages being fed to and grazed by horses. The goal of th...

  6. Development and testing of cool-season grass species, varieties, and hybrids for biomass feedstock production in western North America

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Development and testing of cool-season grasses is needed to improve forage production and expand the range of bioenergy feedstocks throughout western North America. Basin wildrye (Leymus cinereus) and creeping wildrye (Leymus triticoides) are native to semiarid environments of western North America...

  7. Establishing native warm season grasses on Eastern Kentucky strip mines

    SciTech Connect

    Barnes, T.G.; Larkin, J.L.; Arnett, M.B.

    1998-12-31

    The authors evaluated various methods of establishing native warm season grasses on two reclaimed Eastern Kentucky mines from 1994--1997. Most current reclamation practices incorporate the use of tall fescue (Festuca arundinacea) and other cool-season grasses/legumes that provide little wildlife habitats. The use of native warm season grasses will likely improve wildlife habitat on reclaimed strip mines. Objectives of this study were to compare the feasibility of establishing these grasses during fall, winter, or spring using a native rangeland seeder or hydroseeding; a fertilizer application at planting; or cold-moist stratification prior to hydroseeding. Vegetative cover, bare ground, species richness, and biomass samples were collected at the end of each growing season. Native warm season grass plantings had higher plant species richness compared to cool-season reclamation mixtures. There was no difference in establishment of native warm season grasses as a result of fertilization or seeding technique. Winter native warm season grass plantings were failures and cold-moist stratification did not increase plant establishment during any season. As a result of a drought during 1997, both cool-season and warm season plantings were failures. Cool-season reclamation mixtures had significantly more vegetative cover and biomass compared to native warm season grass mixtures and the native warm season grass plantings did not meet vegetative cover requirements for bond release. Forbs and legumes that established well included pale purple coneflower (Echinacea pallida), lance-leaf coreopsis (Coreopsis lanceolata), round-headed lespedeza (Lespedeza capitata), partridge pea (Cassia fasiculata), black-eyed susan (Rudbeckia hirta), butterfly milkweed (Asclepias tuberosa), and bergamot (Monarda fistulosa). Results from two demonstration plots next to research plots indicate it is possible to establish native warm season grasses on Eastern Kentucky strip mines for wildlife habitat.

  8. Stripe smuts of grasses: one lineage or high levels of polyphyly?

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Stripe smut of grasses, Ustilago striiformis s.l., is caused by a complex of smut fungi widely distributed over temperate and subtropical regions. The disease results in the shredding and death of leaf tissue following the rupture of elongated sori. Nearly 100 different grass species in more than 30...

  9. Wounding systemically activates a mitogen-activated protein kinase in forage and turf grasses

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Forage and turf grasses are continually cut and grazed by livestock, however very little is known concerning the perception or molecular responses to wounding. Mechanical wounding rapidly activated a 46 kDa and a 44 kDa mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) in six different grass species. In the m...

  10. Morphological diversity and genetic regulation of inflorescence abscission zones in grasses.

    PubMed

    Doust, Andrew N; Mauro-Herrera, Margarita; Francis, Amie D; Shand, Laura C

    2014-10-01

    • Variation in how seeds are dispersed in grasses is ecologically important, and selection for dispersal mechanisms has produced a great variety of dispersal structures (diaspores). Abscission ("shattering") is necessary in wild grasses, but its elimination by selection on nonshattering mutants was a key component of the domestication syndrome in cereal grasses. A key question is whether a common genetic pathway controls abscission in wild grasses, and, if so, what genes in that pathway may have been selected upon during domestication. We summarize morphological and genetic information on abscission zones and disarticulation patterns in grasses and identify hypotheses to test the likelihood of a common genetic pathway.• Morphological data on abscission zones for over 10000 species of grasses were tabulated and analyzed using a tribal phylogeny of the grasses. The genomic location of quantitative trait loci (QTLs) and orthologs of genes controlling shattering were compared across species to ascertain whether the same loci might control shattering in different grass lineages.• The simple trait of nonshattering is derived from a great diversity of shattering phenotypes. Several sets of QTLs from multiple species are syntenic yet many are not. Genes known to be involved in shattering in several species were found to have orthologs that sometimes colocalized with QTLs in different species, adding support to the hypothesis of retention of a common genetic pathway. These results are used to suggest a research plan that could test the common genetic pathway model more thoroughly. © 2014 Botanical Society of America, Inc.

  11. Divergent evolutionary pattern of starch biosynthetic pathway genes in grasses and dicots.

    PubMed

    Li, Chun; Li, Qi-Gang; Dunwell, Jim M; Zhang, Yuan-Ming

    2012-10-01

    Starch is the most widespread and abundant storage carbohydrate in crops and its production is critical to both crop yield and quality. In regard to the starch content in the seeds of crop plants, there is a distinct difference between grasses (Poaceae) and dicots. However, few studies have described the evolutionary pattern of genes in the starch biosynthetic pathway in these two groups of plants. In this study, therefore, an attempt was made to compare evolutionary rate, gene duplication, and selective pattern of the key genes involved in this pathway between the two groups, using five grasses and five dicots as materials. The results showed 1) distinct differences in patterns of gene duplication and loss between grasses and dicots; duplication in grasses mainly occurred before the divergence of grasses, whereas duplication mostly occurred in individual species within the dicots; there is less gene loss in grasses than in dicots, 2) a considerably higher evolutionary rate in grasses than in dicots in most gene families analyzed, and 3) evidence of a different selective pattern between grasses and dicots; positive selection may have occurred asymmetrically in grasses in some gene families, for example, ADP-glucose pyrophosphorylase small subunit. Therefore, we deduced that gene duplication contributes to, and a higher evolutionary rate is associated with, the higher starch content in grasses. In addition, two novel aspects of the evolution of the starch biosynthetic pathway were observed.

  12. Species differences in pharmacokinetics and drug teratogenesis

    SciTech Connect

    Nau, H.

    1986-12-01

    Interspecies differences in regard to the teratogenicity of drugs can be the result of differing pharmacokinetic processes that determine the crucial concentration-time relationships in the embryo. Maternal absorption, as well as distribution, of the drugs does not usually show great species differences. The first-pass effect after oral application is often more pronounced in animals than man (e.g., valproic acid, 13-cis-retinoic acid), although in some cases the reverse was found (e.g., hydrolysis of valpromide). Existing differences can be adjusted by appropriate choice of the administration route and measurements of drug levels. Many variables determine the placental transfer of drugs: developmental stage, type of placenta, properties of the drug. Even closely related drugs (e.g., retinoids) may differ greatly in regard to placental transfer. Maternal protein binding is an important determinant of placental transfer, since only the free concentration in maternal plasma can equilibrate with the embryo during organogenesis; this parameter differs greatly across species. Laboratory animals usually have a much higher rate of drug elimination than man. Drastic drug level fluctuations are therefore present during teratogenicity testing in animals, but not to do the same degree in human therapy. It must, therefore, be investigated if peak concentrations (such as for valproic acid and possibly caffeine) or the area under the concentration-time curve (AUC) (such as for cyclophosphamide and possibly retinoids) correlate with the teratogenic response. Only then is a rational and scientific basis for interspecies comparison possible. It is concluded that the prediction of the human response based on animal studies can be improved by consideration of the appropriate pharmacokinetic determinants.

  13. Application of image analysis for grass tillering determination.

    PubMed

    Głąb, Tomasz; Sadowska, Urszula; Żabiński, Andrzej

    2015-11-01

    Tillering is defined as the process of above-ground shoot production by a single plant. The number of grass tillers is one of the most important parameters in ecology and breeding studies. The number of tillers is usually determined by manually counting the separated shoots from a single plant. Unfortunately, this method is too time-consuming. In this study, a new method for counting grass tillers based on image analysis is presented. The usefulness of the method was evaluated for five grass species, Phleum pratense, Lolium perenne, Dactylis glomerata, Festuca pratensis and Bromus unioloides. The grass bunches were prepared for analysis by cutting and tip painting. The images obtained were analysed using an automatic procedure with separation of shoots and other objects based on morphological parameters. It was found that image analysis allows for very quick and accurate counting of grass tillers. However, the set of morphological parameters for object recognition must be selected individually for different grass species. This method can be recommended as a replacement for the traditional, time-consuming method in grass breeding.

  14. Seasonal stress physiology and body condition differ among co-occurring tropical finch species.

    PubMed

    Maute, Kimberly L; French, Kristine; Legge, Sarah; Astheimer, Lee

    2013-12-01

    Seasonal changes in avian hormonal stress responses and condition are well known for common species found at temperate and arctic latitudes, but declining and tropical species are poorly studied. This study compares stress and condition measures of co-occurring declining and non-declining tropical grass finch species in Australia. We monitored declining Gouldian finches (Erythrura gouldiae) and non-declining long-tailed and masked finches (Poepila acuticauda and P. personata) during two seasons that are potentially stressful: peak breeding (early dry season when food is plentiful) and moult (late dry to early wet season when food may be scarce). We measured body condition (muscle and fat), haematocrit, and stress response to capture using plasma corticosterone and binding globulin concentrations. All species had higher muscle and lower fat indices during breeding than moult. Haematocrit did not consistently differ between seasons. Long-tailed finches had higher stress responses during breeding than moult, similar to other passerines studied. Masked finches showed no seasonal changes in stress response. Gouldian finches had stress response patterns opposite to those of long-tailed finches, with higher stress responses during moult. However, seasonal trends in Gouldian and long-tailed finch stress responses sometimes differed between years or sites. The differences in stress response patterns between species suggest that the declining Gouldian finch is more sensitive to recent environmental changes which are thought to further reduce grass seed food resources during the late dry to early wet season. Retention of stress responsiveness during a protracted moult could increase the survival potential of Gouldian finches. This study highlights the utility of stress and condition indices to determine the sensitivity of co-occurring species to environmental conditions.

  15. Behavioral analysis of Microphallus turgidus cercariae in relation to microhabitat of two host grass shrimp species (Palaemonetes spp.).

    PubMed

    O'Leary, Patricia A; Pung, Oscar J

    2017-01-24

    The behavior of Microphallus turgidus cercariae was examined and compared to microhabitat selection of the second intermediate hosts of the parasite, Palaemonetes spp. grass shrimp. Cercariae were tested for photokinetic and geotactic responses, and a behavioral ethogram was established for cercariae in control and grass shrimp-conditioned brackish water. Photokinesis trials were performed using a half-covered Petri dish, and geotaxis trials used a graduated cylinder. Both photokinesis and geotaxis trials were performed in lighted and unlighted conditions. In 9 of 10 photokinesis experiments, over half of the cercariae swam horizontally under the covered half of a Petri dish in both the lighted and the unlighted trials. However, movement of the cercariae to the covered half of the dish was highest (81.4%) when the parasites were exposed to light. In the geotaxis study, most cercariae were found in the bottom third of a graduated cylinder water column in both the lighted and unlighted trials. The most frequently observed activity of individual cercariae in a lighted Petri dish was swimming on the bottom of the dish. Activity patterns of the cercariae were not affected by shrimp-conditioned water. Movement of the cercariae away from light into dark, active swimming at or near the bottom of the water column, and a lack of response to host odors suggest that the cercariae utilize search patterns that place the parasite in the preferred microhabitat of the principle second intermediate host, the grass shrimp P. pugio.

  16. Root biomass, root/shoot ratio, and soil water content under perennial grasses with different nitrogen rates

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Roots help in soil water and nutrient uptake and provide C input for soil C sequestration, but information on root biomass of bioenergy perennial grasses is lacking. Root/shoot ratios are used to estimate crop root biomass and C inputs, but the values for perennial grasses are also scanty. We examin...

  17. Grass allergy

    MedlinePlus

    ... itself may not be harmful, fertilizers, insecticides , and herbicides applied to the grass can be poisonous. ... of any sort such as fertilizer, insecticide, or herbicide, find out the product name and ingredients.

  18. Differences in prey capture in grass shrimp, Palaemonetes pugio, collected along an environmental impact gradient.

    PubMed

    Perez, M H; Wallace, W G

    2004-01-01

    The waterways and associated salt marshes along the western border of Staten Island, New York (Arthur Kill) have long been under environmental duress. Environmental threats include industrial and municipal discharges, oil spills, and possible leachate from landfills. These impacts are compounded due to the low flushing of this body of water. Grass shrimp, Palaemonetes pugio, inhabiting the Arthur Kill are, therefore, potentially at risk of exposure to metal and organic pollutants. Successful prey capture (of live brine shrimp, Artemia franciscana) was used to compare the relative health of shrimp collected from three sites along an environmental impact gradient. Study sites included a relatively unimpacted harbor (Great Kills Harbor, GK) and two creeks adjoining the Arthur Kill (Nassau Creek, NC, and Richmond Creek, RC). Shrimp originating from GK exhibited a rate of prey capture (6.3 prey h(-1)) that was about two times greater (p < 0.05) than that of shrimp originating from a creek behind a series of landfills (RC, 3.2 prey h(-1)). The rate of prey capture for shrimp collected from a creek impacted by historic smelting activities (NC) was intermediate (5.4 prey h(-1)). Laboratory studies with shrimp from a pristine site (Tuckerton, NJ) exposed to RC conditions (i.e., sediment and water) for eight weeks indicate that reduced prey capture can be induced in healthy shrimp. Finally, video analysis suggests that reduced prey capture in RC shrimp may not be the result of less effort, but rather the combination of (1) 80% fewer (p < 0.05) prey being captured with a lunge type of attack and (2) a greater reliance (p < 0.05) on a less efficient grab type of foraging behavior (64% success rate for RC versus 87% success rate for GK; p = 0.058). These results indicate that sublethal toxicity in environmentally impacted populations can occur and that prey capture may be used to assay the relative health of field specimens. Additionally, impaired prey capture may have

  19. A high loading overland flow system: Impacts on soil characteristics, grass constituents, yields and nutrient removal.

    PubMed

    Wen, C G; Chen, T H; Hsu, F H; Lu, C H; Lin, J B; Chang, C H; Chang, S P; Lee, C S

    2007-04-01

    The objectives of this paper are to determine effects of different grass species and their harvests on pollutant removal, elucidate impacts on soil characteristics and grass constituents, observe grass yield and quantify nutrient uptake by vegetation in an overland flow system (OLFS). Polluted creek water was applied to eight channels in the OLFS, which were planted with Paragrass, Nilegrass, Cattail, and Vetiver, with each two channels being randomly planted with a given grass species. The grass in one channel was harvested while that in the other channel was not. At a high rate of 27.8 m d(-1) hydraulic loading, the removal efficiencies of conventional pollutants such as BOD, COD, suspended solids (SS), and total coliforms in wastewater are not affected by the type of the grasses species, but those of nitrogen and phosphorus are affected by different species. Overall average removal efficiencies of BOD, COD, SS, ammonia, total nitrogen, total phosphorus and total coliforms through the OLFS are 42%, 48%, 78%, 47%, 40%, 33% and 89%, respectively. The concentration of nitrate, however, increases due to nitrification. Soil characteristics in OLFS have been changed significantly; specific conductivity, organic matter, exchangeable magnesium, extractable copper and zinc in soils all increase with time while pHs decrease. During the winter season, there is a significant accumulation of nitrate in grass with the subsequent reduction during the active growing season (Spring). The contents of nitrate and phosphorus in grass tissue are higher than those of grass in general pastureland, probably due to nutrient luxury uptake by grass. The overall grass yield, growth rate and nutrient uptake are quantified and implication of such high rate OLFS discussed.

  20. Silicified structures affect leaf optical properties in grasses and sedge.

    PubMed

    Klančnik, Katja; Vogel-Mikuš, Katarina; Gaberščik, Alenka

    2014-01-05

    Silicon (Si) is an important structural element that can accumulate at high concentrations in grasses and sedges, and therefore Si structures might affect the optical properties of the leaves. To better understand the role of Si in light/leaf interactions in species rich in Si, we examined the total Si and silica phytoliths, the biochemical and morphological leaf properties, and the reflectance and transmittance spectra in grasses (Phragmites australis, Phalaris arundinacea, Molinia caerulea, Deschampsia cespitosa) and sedge (Carex elata). We show that these grasses contain >1% phytoliths per dry mass, while the sedge contains only 0.4%. The data reveal the variable leaf structures of these species and significant differences in the amount of Si and phytoliths between developing and mature leaves within each species and between grasses and sedge, with little difference seen among the grass species. Redundancy analysis shows the significant roles of the different near-surface silicified leaf structures (e.g., prickle hairs, cuticle, epidermis), phytoliths and Si contents, which explain the majority of the reflectance and transmittance spectra variability. The amount of explained variance differs between mature and developing leaves. The transmittance spectra are also significantly affected by chlorophyll a content and calcium levels in the leaf tissue.

  1. Does plant species co-occurrence influence soil mite diversity?

    PubMed

    St John, Mark G; Wall, Diana H; Behan-Pelletier, Valerie M

    2006-03-01

    Few studies have considered whether plant taxa can be used as predictors of belowground faunal diversity in natural ecosystems. We examined soil mite (Acari) diversity beneath six grass species at the Konza Prairie Biological Station, Kansas, USA. We tested the hypotheses that soil mite species richness, abundance, and taxonomic diversity are greater (1) beneath grasses in dicultures (different species) compared to monocultures (same species), (2) beneath grasses of higher resource quality (lower C:N) compared to lower resource quality, and (3) beneath heterogeneous mixes of grasses (C3 and C4 grasses growing together) compared to homogeneous mixes (C3 or C4 grasses) using natural occurrences of plant species as treatments. This study is the first to examine the interaction between above- and belowground diversity in a natural setting with species-level resolution of a hyper-diverse taxon. Our results indicate that grasses in diculture supported a more species and phylogenetically rich soil mite fauna than was observed for monocultures and that this relationship was significant at depth but not in the upper soil horizon. We noted that mite species richness was not linearly related to grass species richness, which suggests that simple extrapolations of soil faunal diversity based on plant species inventories may underestimate the richness of associated soil mite communities. The distribution of mite size classes in dicultures was considerably different than those for monocultures. There was no difference in soil mite richness between grass combinations of differing resource quality, or resource heterogeneity.

  2. The carbon fertilization effect over a century of anthropogenic CO2 emissions: higher intracellular CO2 and more drought resistance among invasive and native grass species contrasts with increased water use efficiency for woody plants in the US Southwest.

    PubMed

    Drake, Brandon L; Hanson, David T; Lowrey, Timothy K; Sharp, Zachary D

    2017-02-01

    From 1890 to 2015, anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions have increased atmospheric CO2 concentrations from 270 to 400 mol mol(-1) . The effect of increased carbon emissions on plant growth and reproduction has been the subject of study of free-air CO2 enrichment (FACE) experiments. These experiments have found (i) an increase in internal CO2 partial pressure (ci ) alongside acclimation of photosynthetic capacity, (ii) variable decreases in stomatal conductance, and (iii) that increases in yield do not increase commensurate with CO2 concentrations. Our data set, which includes a 115-year-long selection of grasses collected in New Mexico since 1892, is consistent with an increased ci as a response to historical CO2 increase in the atmosphere, with invasive species showing the largest increase. Comparison with Palmer Drought Sensitivity Index (PDSI) for New Mexico indicates a moderate correlation with Δ(13) C (r(2)  = 0.32, P < 0.01) before 1950, with no correlation (r(2)  = 0.00, P = 0.91) after 1950. These results indicate that increased ci may have conferred some drought resistance to these grasses through increased availability of CO2 in the event of reduced stomatal conductance in response to short-term water shortage. Comparison with C3 trees from arid environments (Pinus longaeva and Pinus edulis in the US Southwest) as well as from wetter environments (Bromus and Poa grasses in New Mexico) suggests differing responses based on environment; arid environments in New Mexico see increased intrinsic water use efficiency (WUE) in response to historic elevated CO2 while wetter environments see increased ci . This study suggests that (i) the observed increases in ci in FACE experiments are consistent with historical CO2 increases and (ii) the CO2 increase influences plant sensitivity to water shortage, through either increased WUE or ci in arid and wet environments, respectively.

  3. Architectural Evolution and its Implications for Domestication in Grasses

    PubMed Central

    Doust, Andrew

    2007-01-01

    Background The cereal crops domesticated from grasses provide a large percentage of the calories consumed by humans. Domestication and breeding in individual cereals has historically occurred in isolation, although this is rapidly changing with comparative genomics of the sequenced or soon-to-be sequenced genomes of rice, sorghum, maize and Brachypodium. Genetic information transferred through genomic comparisons is helping our understanding of genetically less tractable crops such as the hexaploid wheats and polyploid sugarcane, as well as the approx. 10 000 species of wild grasses. In turn, phylogenetic analysis helps put our knowledge of the morphology of cereal crops into an evolutionary context. Grass Architecture Domestication often involves a change in the pattern and timing of branching, which affects both vegetative and inflorescence architecture, and ultimately yield. Cereal grasses exhibit two main forms of vegetative architecture: the pooid and erhartoid cereals such as wheat and rice have multiple basal tillers, while panicoid cereals such as maize, sorghum and the millets have few tillers or even only a single main stem. These differences are reflected in the differences between the wild species of pooid and some erhartoid grasses, which emphasize basal branching over axillary branching, and the panicoid grasses, where axillary branching is more frequently found. A combination of phylogenetic and genomic analysis is beginning to reveal the similarities and differences between different cereal crops, and relate these to the diversity of wild grasses to which they are related. Recent work on genes controlling branching emphasizes that developmental genetics needs to be viewed in both an evolutionary and ecological framework, if it is to be useful in understanding how morphology evolves. Increasingly, exploring the phylogenetic context of the crop grasses will suggest new ways to identify and create combinations of morphological traits that will best

  4. Urban Rights-of-Way as Reservoirs for Tall-Grass Prairie Plants and Butterflies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leston, Lionel; Koper, Nicola

    2016-03-01

    Urban rights-of-way may be potential reservoirs of tall-grass prairie plants and butterflies. To determine if this is true, in 2007-2008, we conducted vegetation surveys of species richness and cover, and butterfly surveys of species richness and abundance, along 52 transmission lines and four remnant prairies in Winnipeg, Manitoba. We detected many prairie plants and butterflies within transmission lines. Some unmowed and infrequently managed transmission lines had native plant species richness and total percent cover of native plants comparable to that of similar-sized remnant tall-grass prairies in the region. Although we did not find significant differences in overall native butterfly numbers or species richness between rights-of-way and remnant prairies, we found lower numbers of some prairie butterflies along frequently mowed rights-of-way than within remnant tall-grass prairies. We also observed higher butterfly species richness along sites with more native plant species. By reducing mowing and spraying and reintroducing tall-grass prairie plants, urban rights-of-way could serve as extensive reservoirs for tall-grass prairie plants and butterflies in urban landscapes. Eventually, managing urban rights-of-way as reservoirs for tall-grass prairie plants and animals could contribute to the restoration of tall-grass prairie in the North American Midwest.

  5. Urban Rights-of-Way as Reservoirs for Tall-Grass Prairie Plants and Butterflies.

    PubMed

    Leston, Lionel; Koper, Nicola

    2016-03-01

    Urban rights-of-way may be potential reservoirs of tall-grass prairie plants and butterflies. To determine if this is true, in 2007-2008, we conducted vegetation surveys of species richness and cover, and butterfly surveys of species richness and abundance, along 52 transmission lines and four remnant prairies in Winnipeg, Manitoba. We detected many prairie plants and butterflies within transmission lines. Some unmowed and infrequently managed transmission lines had native plant species richness and total percent cover of native plants comparable to that of similar-sized remnant tall-grass prairies in the region. Although we did not find significant differences in overall native butterfly numbers or species richness between rights-of-way and remnant prairies, we found lower numbers of some prairie butterflies along frequently mowed rights-of-way than within remnant tall-grass prairies. We also observed higher butterfly species richness along sites with more native plant species. By reducing mowing and spraying and reintroducing tall-grass prairie plants, urban rights-of-way could serve as extensive reservoirs for tall-grass prairie plants and butterflies in urban landscapes. Eventually, managing urban rights-of-way as reservoirs for tall-grass prairie plants and animals could contribute to the restoration of tall-grass prairie in the North American Midwest.

  6. Variation of soil and plant characteristics among old world bluestem species

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Old world bluestems (Bothriochloa spp.) have been successfully introduced as grasses for livestock forage in the semiarid Texas High Plains. Questions remain, however, on effects of these grasses on soil resources. We tested the hypothesis that differences in grass species produce differences in so...

  7. Cured products from different animal species.

    PubMed

    Paleari, Maria Antonietta; Moretti, Vittorio Maria; Beretta, Giuseppe; Mentasti, Tiziana; Bersani, Carla

    2003-04-01

    An assessment was made of the proximate composition, pH and a(W) of raw beef, horsemeat and the meat of wild boar, deer and goat. The same assessment, together with one of fatty acids, cholesterol and free amino acids, was made of the same meats as cured products. The raw meat of the different animal species was found to have a reduced lipid, but high protein content. The cured meat of the horse and wild boar had low saturated fatty acid levels; the wild boar, goatmeat and beef were quantitatively similar with regard to monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) while in the horsemeat the polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) were more raised, at an intermediate level in deer and extremely reduced in the beef final product. The cholesterol content in the cured product was markedly reduced in the horsemeat. The free amino acids content in the cured deer, wild boar and goat meat was more elevated, than in beef and horse cured meat.

  8. Effect of different pretreatments on delignification pattern and enzymatic hydrolysability of miscanthus, oil palm biomass and typha grass.

    PubMed

    Timilsena, Yakindra Prasad; Abeywickrama, Chandana Janaka; Rakshit, Sudip Kumar; Brosse, Nicolas

    2013-05-01

    Cumulative pretreatments methods were evaluated for delignification ability and enzymatic digestibility using miscanthus (M×G), empty palm fruit bunch (EFB) and typha grass as feedstocks. Despite their close chemical composition, the three feedstocks unveiled quite different behavior under the same condition of pretreatment. Characterization of ethanol organosol lignins extracted from the three feedstocks by (13)C NMR and FTIR revealed information concerning S/G/H ratios which was important to rationalize the differences among the feedstock behavior. The S/G/H ratios for MxG, EFB and typha, were established to levels of ~52/44/4, ~68/30/2 and ~46/27/27 respectively. The xylans hydrolytic susceptibility were a major cause of difference in behavior of feedstock during the pretreatment process. The influence of the presence of naphthol during autohydrolysis on the delignification ability was studied. A good relationship was observed between S+H/G ratio and the scavenging effect of naphthol. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Net flux of nutrients across splanchnic tissues in wethers consuming grasses of different sources and physical forms ad libitum.

    PubMed

    Goetsch, A L; Patil, A R; Galloway, D L; Kouakou, B; Wang, Z S; Park, K K; Rossi, J E

    1997-05-01

    Crossbred sheep (n 16, 8.5 months of age and 33 (SE 0.9) kg) were used in a 21 d experiment (2 x 2 factorial) to determine effects on net flux of nutrients across the portal-drained viscera (PDV) and liver of ad libitum consumption of bermudagrass (Cynodon dactylon; B) v. ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum)-wheat (Triticum aestivum; RW) hay, coarsely chopped (CC) or finely ground and pelleted (GP). Crude protein concentrations were 86, 81, 113 and 119 g/kg and neutral-detergent fibre concentrations were 710, 688, 654 and 672 g/kg (dry matter basis) for B-CC, B-GP, RW-CC and RW-GP respectively. Digestible energy intake (6.0, 9.6, 10.2 and 13.8 MJ/d) differed (P < 0.01) with grass source and form, and digestible N intake values were 4.4, 7.0, 8.4 and 14.1 (SEM 0.82) g/d for B-CC, B-GP, RW-CC and RW-GP diets respectively. Consumption of O2 by the PDV (118, 165, 144 and 155 mmol/h) and splanchnic bed (196, 273, 247 and 266 mmol/h for B-CC, B-GP, RW-CC and RW-GP respectively) was greater (P = 0.07) for GP than for CC. The ratio splanchnic heat energy production: digestible energy intake was greater (P = 0.06) for B than for RW (0.374, 0.300, 0.278 and 0.219 for B-CC, B-GP, RW-CC and RW-GP respectively). alpha-Amino-N release by the PDV (P < 0.01; 11.6, 12.8, 23.0 and 18.7 mmol/h) and uptake by the liver (P = 0.07; 15.2, 6.1, 17.0 and 19.3 mmol/h for B-CC, B-GP, RW-CC and RW-GP respectively) were greater for RW than for B. Release of NH3-N by the PDV was greater (P = 0.02) for CC than for GP (12.5, 6.2, 15.7 and 8.9 mmol/h), and hepatic urea-N release differed between grass sources (P = 0.03) and physical forms (P = 0.07; 22.6, 12.7, 31.4 and 24.8 mmol/h for B-CC, B-GP, RW-CC and RW-GP respectively). In conclusion, decrease in forage particle size elicited by grinding and pelleting did not affect the difference between grass sources in splanchnic tissue heat energy production relative to digestible energy intake.

  10. Metal concentrations in various fish organs of different fish species from Poyang Lake, China.

    PubMed

    Wei, YiHua; Zhang, JinYan; Zhang, DaWen; Tu, TianHua; Luo, LinGuang

    2014-06-01

    Concentrations of As, Cd, Cr, Cu, Hg, Ni, Pb, and Zn in the muscle of eleven fish species (bighead carp, bream, catfish, carp, crucian, Culter alburnus, grass carp, mandarin fish, white semiknife carp, silver carp, and yellow catfish) from Poyang Lake were analysed using inductive coupling plasma mass spectrometry. Metal levels in other organs (e.g., bladder, gill, kidney, liver, and spleen) of bighead carp, carp, grass carp, and silver carp were also determined. The results showed that metal concentrations in the muscle of all fish species were significantly lower than the proposed limits. Heavy metal concentrations were found to be substantially higher in benthic fish than in pelagic fish. Higher Hg contents were observed in predatory fish. In addition, various metals showed different affinity to fish organs. Hg was the most abundant in muscle, while Ni and Pb concentrations were highest in gills, Cd and Zn concentrations were highest in kidneys, and Cu was most commonly found in livers. Estimations of health risks revealed no evidence of potential threats to consumers. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Feeding behavior, ruminal fermentation, and performance of pregnant beef cows differing in phenotypic residual feed intake offered grass silage.

    PubMed

    Fitzsimons, C; Kenny, D A; Fahey, A G; McGee, M

    2014-05-01

    -RFI cows had more and a longer total duration of nonfeeding events (P < 0.001) than low-RFI cows. This study showed that compared to cows with high RFI, those with low RFI consumed less feed for similar levels of productivity, spent less time engaged in feeding-behavior-related activities, and differed in ruminal fermentation parameters. Feeding events are a significant (17%) contributory factor to variation in RFI in pregnant beef cows offered grass silage.

  12. Underutilized Grasses.

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Perennial warm-season grasses have been recognized for having several properties, such as high rates of net photosynthesis, energy and labor savings, and reduced soil and nutrient losses that make them better suited for biofuel production than many annual crops. Prairie cordgrass (Spartina pectinat...

  13. Species interactions differ in their genetic robustness

    DOE PAGES

    Chubiz, Lon M.; Granger, Brian R.; Segre, Daniel; ...

    2015-04-14

    Conflict and cooperation between bacterial species drive the composition and function of microbial communities. Stability of these emergent properties will be influenced by the degree to which species' interactions are robust to genetic perturbations. We use genome-scale metabolic modeling to computationally analyze the impact of genetic changes when Escherichia coli and Salmonella enterica compete, or cooperate. We systematically knocked out in silico each reaction in the metabolic network of E. coli to construct all 2583 mutant stoichiometric models. Then, using a recently developed multi-scale computational framework, we simulated the growth of each mutant E. coli in the presence of S.more » enterica. The type of interaction between species was set by modulating the initial metabolites present in the environment. We found that the community was most robust to genetic perturbations when the organisms were cooperating. Species ratios were more stable in the cooperative community, and community biomass had equal variance in the two contexts. Additionally, the number of mutations that have a substantial effect is lower when the species cooperate than when they are competing. In contrast, when mutations were added to the S. enterica network the system was more robust when the bacteria were competing. These results highlight the utility of connecting metabolic mechanisms and studies of ecological stability. Cooperation and conflict alter the connection between genetic changes and properties that emerge at higher levels of biological organization.« less

  14. Multiple grass mixes as opposed to single grasses for allergen immunotherapy in allergic rhinitis.

    PubMed

    Gangl, K; Niederberger, V; Valenta, R

    2013-11-01

    Grass pollen allergy affects approximately 40% of allergic patients. Subcutaneous allergen immunotherapy (SCIT) is the only allergen-specific and disease-modifying treatment available. Currently available therapeutic vaccines for the treatment of grass pollen allergy are based on natural grass pollen extracts which are either made from pollen of one cross-reactive grass species or from several related grass species. Clinical studies have shown that SCIT performed with timothy grass pollen extract is effective for the treatment of grass pollen allergy. Moreover, it has been demonstrated that recombinant timothy grass pollen allergens contain the majority of relevant epitopes and can be used for SCIT in clinical trials. However, recent in vitro studies have suggested that mixes consisting of allergen extracts from several related grass species may have advantages for SCIT over single allergen extracts. Here, we review current knowledge regarding the disease-relevant allergens in grass pollen allergy, available clinical studies comparing SCIT with allergen extracts from timothy grass or from mixes of several related grass species of the Pooideae subfamily, in vitro cross-reactivity studies performed with natural allergen extracts and recombinant allergens and SCIT studies performed with recombinant timothy grass pollen allergens. In vitro and clinical studies performed with natural allergen extracts reveal no relevant advantages of using multiple grass mixes as opposed to single grass pollen extracts. Several studies analysing the molecular composition of natural allergen extracts and the molecular profile of patients' immune responses after SCIT with allergen extracts indicate that the major limitation for the production of a high quality grass pollen vaccine resides in intrinsic features of natural allergen extracts which can only be overcome with recombinant allergen-based technologies. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  15. Ornamental Landscape Grasses. Slide Script.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Still, Steven M.; Adams, Denise W.

    This slide script to accompany the slide series, Ornamental Landscape Grasses, contains photographs of the 167 slides and accompanying narrative text intended for use in the study and identification of commercially important ornamental grasses and grasslike plants. Narrative text is provided for slides of 62 different perennial and annual species…

  16. Ornamental Landscape Grasses. Slide Script.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Still, Steven M.; Adams, Denise W.

    This slide script to accompany the slide series, Ornamental Landscape Grasses, contains photographs of the 167 slides and accompanying narrative text intended for use in the study and identification of commercially important ornamental grasses and grasslike plants. Narrative text is provided for slides of 62 different perennial and annual species…

  17. A proteomic style approach to characterize a grass mix product reveals potential immunotherapeutic benefit.

    PubMed

    Bullimore, Alan; Swan, Nicola; Alawode, Wemimo; Skinner, Murray

    2011-09-01

    Grass allergy immunotherapies often consist of a mix of different grass extracts, each containing several proteins of different physiochemical properties; however, the subtle contributions of each protein are difficult to elucidate. This study aimed to identify and characterize the group 1 and 5 allergens in a 13 grass extract and to standardize the extraction method. The grass pollens were extracted in isolation and pooled and also in combination and analyzed using a variety of techniques including enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, liquid chromatog-raphy-mass spectrometry, and sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylam-ide gel electrophoresis. Gold-staining and IgE immunoblotting revealed a high degree of homology of protein bands between the 13 species and the presence of a densely stained doublet at 25-35 kD along with protein bands at approximately 12.5, 17, and 50 kD. The doublet from each grass species demonstrated a high level of group 1 and 5 interspecies homology. However, there were a number of bands unique to specific grasses consistent with evolutionary change and indicative that a grass mix immunotherapeutic could be considered broad spectrum. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electro-phoresis and IgE immunoblotting showed all 13 grasses share a high degree of homology, particularly in terms of group 1 and 5 allergens. IgE and IgG enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay potencies were shown to be independent of extraction method.

  18. Upper airway resistance: species-related differences.

    PubMed

    Kirschvink, N; Reinhold, P

    2010-07-01

    In veterinary medicine, upper airway resistance deserves a particular attention in equines athletes and brachycephalic dogs. Due to the anatomical peculiarities of the upper airway and/or pathological conditions, significant alterations of performance and/or well being might occur in horses and dogs. Physiological specificities and pathological changes of the lower respiratory tract deserve a major attention in other species.

  19. Species interactions differ in their genetic robustness

    SciTech Connect

    Chubiz, Lon M.; Granger, Brian R.; Segre, Daniel; Harcombe, William R.

    2015-04-14

    Conflict and cooperation between bacterial species drive the composition and function of microbial communities. Stability of these emergent properties will be influenced by the degree to which species' interactions are robust to genetic perturbations. We use genome-scale metabolic modeling to computationally analyze the impact of genetic changes when Escherichia coli and Salmonella enterica compete, or cooperate. We systematically knocked out in silico each reaction in the metabolic network of E. coli to construct all 2583 mutant stoichiometric models. Then, using a recently developed multi-scale computational framework, we simulated the growth of each mutant E. coli in the presence of S. enterica. The type of interaction between species was set by modulating the initial metabolites present in the environment. We found that the community was most robust to genetic perturbations when the organisms were cooperating. Species ratios were more stable in the cooperative community, and community biomass had equal variance in the two contexts. Additionally, the number of mutations that have a substantial effect is lower when the species cooperate than when they are competing. In contrast, when mutations were added to the S. enterica network the system was more robust when the bacteria were competing. These results highlight the utility of connecting metabolic mechanisms and studies of ecological stability. Cooperation and conflict alter the connection between genetic changes and properties that emerge at higher levels of biological organization.

  20. Grass meristems II: inflorescence architecture, flower development and meristem fate.

    PubMed

    Tanaka, Wakana; Pautler, Michael; Jackson, David; Hirano, Hiro-Yuki

    2013-03-01

    Plant development depends on the activity of various types of meristems that generate organs such as leaves and floral organs throughout the life cycle. Grass species produce complex inflorescences and unique flowers. The grass inflorescence is composed of different types of branches, including a specialized branch called a spikelet. The spikelet is a special unit of the inflorescence and forms one to several florets, depending on the species. In the floret, floral organs such as perianth organs, carpels and stamens are formed. In Arabidopsis, because the inflorescence meristem (IM) forms the floral meristems (FMs) directly on its flanks, the change of meristem fate is relatively simple. In contrast, in grasses, different types of meristem, such as the IM, the branch meristem (BM), the spikelet pair meristem (SPM) in some grasses, the spikelet meristem (SM) and the FM, are responsible for the elaboration of their complex inflorescences and flowers. Therefore, sequential changes of meristem fate are required, and a number of genes involved in the specification of the fate of each meristem have been identified. In this review, we focus on the following issues concerning the fate of the reproductive meristems in two grass species, maize (Zea mays) and rice (Oryza sativa): (i) meristem regulation during inflorescence development; (ii) specification and fate change of the BM and the SM; (iii) determinacy of the FM; and (iv) communication between the meristem and lateral organs.

  1. Airborne study of grass allergen (Lol p 1) in different-sized particles.

    PubMed

    De Linares, C; Díaz de la Guardia, C; Nieto Lugilde, D; Alba, F

    2010-01-01

    The Poaceae family is considered one of the main causes of pollen allergy in industrialized countries. The aim of this study is to establish the dynamics of the Poaceae allergens and determine their distribution in the different-sized particles in the atmosphere. The air of Granada (southern Spain) was sampled during the pollination period of Poaceae using a cascade impactor and a Hirst-type volumetric collector simultaneously. The sampled airborne allergens were analyzed by indirect ELISA and field emission scanning electron microscopy. Airborne pollen was evaluated with the Spanish Aerobiological Network methodology. Poaceae pollen and allergenic activity have parallel dynamics during the period of maximum pollination, which is reflected in the positive correlations between the 2 variables. In addition, the highest Lol p 1 concentrations were recorded in particle sizes lower than 3.3 mum (stage 4-F). The Spearman correlation test showed that airborne allergens are not dependent on meteorological factors, such as humidity, wind direction or sunshine, however, Lol p 1 allergen correlated positively with Poaceae pollen. The results of the present study confirm that the Lol p 1 allergen is detected more frequently with pollutants than with coarse particles with similar dynamics and a positive correlation between airborne pollen and aeroallergens. Moreover, Lol p 1 is released in stable weather conditions without large changes in humidity or temperature. Copyright 2009 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  2. NADPH oxidase activity in allergenic pollen grains of different plant species.

    PubMed

    Wang, Xiao-Ling; Takai, Toshiro; Kamijo, Seiji; Gunawan, Hendra; Ogawa, Hideoki; Okumura, Ko

    2009-09-25

    Pollen is an important trigger of allergic diseases. Recent studies have shown that ragweed pollen NAD(P)H oxidase generates reactive oxygen species (ROS) and plays a prominent role in the pathogenesis of allergies in mouse models. Here, we demonstrated that allergenic pollen grains showed NAD(P)H oxidase activity that differed in intensity and localization according to the plant families. The activity occurred at the surface or in the cytoplasm in pollen of grasses, birch, and ragweed; in subpollen particles released from ragweed pollen; and at the inner surface or in the cytoplasm but not on the outer wall, which was sloughed off after the rupture, of pollen of Japanese cedar and Japanese cypress. The activity was mostly concentrated within insoluble fractions, suggesting that it facilitates the exposure of tissues to ROS generated by this enzyme. The extent of exposure to pollen-generated ROS could differ among the plant families.

  3. Spectral resampling based on user-defined inter-band correlation filter: C3 and C4 grass species classification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adjorlolo, Clement; Mutanga, Onisimo; Cho, Moses A.; Ismail, Riyad

    2013-04-01

    In this paper, a user-defined inter-band correlation filter function was used to resample hyperspectral data and thereby mitigate the problem of multicollinearity in classification analysis. The proposed resampling technique convolves the spectral dependence information between a chosen band-centre and its shorter and longer wavelength neighbours. Weighting threshold of inter-band correlation (WTC, Pearson's r) was calculated, whereby r = 1 at the band-centre. Various WTC (r = 0.99, r = 0.95 and r = 0.90) were assessed, and bands with coefficients beyond a chosen threshold were assigned r = 0. The resultant data were used in the random forest analysis to classify in situ C3 and C4 grass canopy reflectance. The respective WTC datasets yielded improved classification accuracies (kappa = 0.82, 0.79 and 0.76) with less correlated wavebands when compared to resampled Hyperion bands (kappa = 0.76). Overall, the results obtained from this study suggested that resampling of hyperspectral data should account for the spectral dependence information to improve overall classification accuracy as well as reducing the problem of multicollinearity.

  4. Salinity tolerance of foxtail barley (Hordeum jubatum) and desirable pasture grasses

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Greenhouse studies were conducted to determine the relative salinity tolerance of foxtail barley and seven desirable pasture grasses. Grass species were reed canarygrass, timothy, altai wildrye, tall fescue, tall wheatgrass, orchardgrass, creeping meadow foxtail, and foxtail barley. Grasses were e...

  5. Exotic herbivores directly facilitate the exotic grasses they graze: mechanisms for an unexpected positive feedback between invaders.

    PubMed

    Best, Rebecca J; Arcese, Peter

    2009-02-01

    The ability of an exotic species to establish in a system may depend not only on the invasibility of the native community, but also on its interactions with other exotic species. Though examples of mutually beneficial interactions between exotic species are known, few studies have quantified these effects or identified specific mechanisms. We used the co-invasion of an endangered island ecosystem by exotic Canada geese (Branta canadensis) and nine exotic annual grasses to study the effects of an invading herbivore on the success of invading grasses. On our study islands in southwestern Canada, we found that geese fed selectively on the exotic grasses and avoided native forbs. Counter to current theory suggesting that the grasses should be limited by a selective enemy, however, the grasses increased in proportional abundance under grazing whereas forbs showed declining abundance. Testing potential mechanisms for the effects of grazing on grasses, we found that the grasses produced more stems per area when grazing reduced vegetation height and prevented litter accumulation. Forming dense mats of short stems appeared to be an efficient reproductive and competitive strategy that the Eurasian grasses have evolved in the presence of grazers, conferring a competitive advantage in a system where the native species pool has very few annual grasses and no grazers. Germination trials further demonstrated that selective herbivory by geese enables their dispersal of exotic grass seed between heavily invaded feeding areas and the small islands used for nesting. In summary, the exotic geese facilitated both the local increase and the spatial spread of exotic grasses, which in turn provided the majority of their diet. This unexpected case of positive feedback between exotic species suggests that invasion success may depend on the overall differences between the evolutionary histories of the invaders and the evolutionary history of the native community they enter.

  6. Do shallow soil, low water availability, or their combination increase the competition between grasses with different root systems in karst soil?

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yajie; Li, Zhou; Zhang, Jing; Song, Haiyan; Liang, Qianhui; Tao, Jianping; Cornelissen, Johannes H C; Liu, Jinchun

    2017-04-01

    Uneven soil depth and low water availability are the key limiting factors to vegetation restoration and reconstruction in limestone soils such as in vulnerable karst regions. Belowground competition will possibly increase under limited soil resources. Here, we investigate whether low resource availability (including shallow soil, low water availability, and shallow soil and low water availability combined) stimulates the competition between grasses with different root systems in karst soil, by assessing their growth response, biomass allocation, and morphological plasticity. In a full three-way factorial blocked design of soil depth by water availability by neighbor identity, we grew Festuca arundinacea (deep-rooted) and Lolium perenne (shallow-rooted) under normal versus shallow soil depth, high versus low water availability, and in monoculture (conspecific neighbor) versus mixture (neighbor of the other species). The key results were as follows: (1) total biomass and aboveground biomass in either of the species decreased with reduction of resources but were not affected by planting patterns (monoculture or mixture) even at low resource levels. (2) For F. arundinacea, root biomass, root mass fraction, total root length, and root volume were higher in mixture than in monoculture at high resource level (consistent with resource use complementarity), but lower in mixture than in monoculture at low resource levels (consistent with interspecific competition). In contrast for L. perenne, either at high or low resource level, these root traits had mostly similar values at both planting patterns. These results suggest that deep-rooted and shallow-rooted plant species can coexist in karst regions under current climatic regimes. Declining resources, due to shallow soil, a decrease in precipitation, or combined shallow soil and karst drought, increased the root competition between plants of deep-rooted and shallow-rooted species. The root systems of deep-rooted plants may be

  7. Phytotoxic activity of Ocimum tenuiflorum extracts on germination and seedling growth of different plant species.

    PubMed

    Islam, A K M Mominul; Kato-Noguchi, Hisashi

    2014-01-01

    Phytotoxic activity of Ocimum tenuiflorum (Lamiaceae) plant extracts was investigated against the germination and seedling growth of cress (Lepidium sativum), lettuce (Lactuca sativa), alfalfa (Medicago sativa), Italian ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum), barnyard grass (Echinochloa crus-galli), and timothy (Phleum pratense) at four different concentrations. The plant extracts at concentrations greater than 30 mg dry weight equivalent extract mL(-1) reduced significantly the total germination percent (GP), germination index (GI), germination energy (GE), speed of emergence (SE), seedling vigour index (SVI), and coefficient of the rate of germination (CRG) of all test species except barnyard grass and GP of lettuce. In contrast, time required for 50% germination (T 50) and mean germination time (MGT) were increased at the same or higher than this concentration. The increasing trend of T 50 and MGT and the decreasing trend of other indices indicated a significant inhibition or delay of germination of the test species by O. tenuiflorum plant extracts and vice versa. In addition, the shoot and root growth of all test species were significantly inhibited by the extracts at concentrations greater than 10 mg dry weight equivalent extract mL(-1). The I 50 values for shoot and root growth were ranged from 26 to 104 mg dry weight equivalent extract mL(-1). Seedling growth was more sensitive to the extracts compared to seed germination. Results of this study suggest that O. tenuiflorum plant extracts have phytotoxic properties and thus contain phytotoxic substances. Isolation and characterization of those substances from this plant may act as a tool for new natural, biodegradable herbicide development to control weeds.

  8. Phytotoxic Activity of Ocimum tenuiflorum Extracts on Germination and Seedling Growth of Different Plant Species

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Phytotoxic activity of Ocimum tenuiflorum (Lamiaceae) plant extracts was investigated against the germination and seedling growth of cress (Lepidium sativum), lettuce (Lactuca sativa), alfalfa (Medicago sativa), Italian ryegrass (Lolium multiflorum), barnyard grass (Echinochloa crus-galli), and timothy (Phleum pratense) at four different concentrations. The plant extracts at concentrations greater than 30 mg dry weight equivalent extract mL−1 reduced significantly the total germination percent (GP), germination index (GI), germination energy (GE), speed of emergence (SE), seedling vigour index (SVI), and coefficient of the rate of germination (CRG) of all test species except barnyard grass and GP of lettuce. In contrast, time required for 50% germination (T 50) and mean germination time (MGT) were increased at the same or higher than this concentration. The increasing trend of T 50 and MGT and the decreasing trend of other indices indicated a significant inhibition or delay of germination of the test species by O. tenuiflorum plant extracts and vice versa. In addition, the shoot and root growth of all test species were significantly inhibited by the extracts at concentrations greater than 10 mg dry weight equivalent extract mL−1. The I 50 values for shoot and root growth were ranged from 26 to 104 mg dry weight equivalent extract mL−1. Seedling growth was more sensitive to the extracts compared to seed germination. Results of this study suggest that O. tenuiflorum plant extracts have phytotoxic properties and thus contain phytotoxic substances. Isolation and characterization of those substances from this plant may act as a tool for new natural, biodegradable herbicide development to control weeds. PMID:25032234

  9. Rathayibacter toxicus, Other Rathayibacter Species Inducing Bacterial Head Blight of Grasses, and the Potential for Livestock Poisonings.

    PubMed

    Murray, Timothy D; Schroeder, Brenda K; Schneider, William L; Luster, Douglas G; Sechler, Aaron; Rogers, Elizabeth E; Subbotin, Sergei A

    2017-07-01

    Rathayibacter toxicus, a Select Agent in the United States, is one of six recognized species in the genus Rathayibacter and the best known due to its association with annual ryegrass toxicity, which occurs only in parts of Australia. The Rathayibacter species are unusual among phytopathogenic bacteria in that they are transmitted by anguinid seed gall nematodes and produce extracellular polysaccharides in infected plants resulting in bacteriosis diseases with common names such as yellow slime and bacterial head blight. R. toxicus is distinguished from the other species by producing corynetoxins in infected plants; toxin production is associated with infection by a bacteriophage. These toxins cause grazing animals feeding on infected plants to develop convulsions and abnormal gate, which is referred to as "staggers," and often results in death of affected animals. R. toxicus is the only recognized Rathayibacter species to produce toxin, although reports of livestock deaths in the United States suggest a closely related toxigenic species may be present. A closely related but undescribed species, Rathayibacter sp. EV, originally isolated from Ehrharta villosa var. villosa in South Africa, is suspected of producing toxin. Many of the diseases caused by Rathayibacter species occur in arid areas and the extracellular polysaccharide they produce is believed to aid in their survival between crops. For example, R. "agropyri" was isolated from infected plant material after being stored for 50 years in a herbarium. Similarly, the anguinid vectors associated with these bacteria form seed galls in infected plants and are capable of surviving for very long periods of time under dry conditions. The addition of R. toxicus to the list of Select Agents has raised concern over its potential introduction and a realization that current diagnostic methods are inadequate to distinguish among Rathayibacter species. In addition, little is known about the Rathayibacter species and their

  10. [Optimized Spectral Indices Based Estimation of Forage Grass Biomass].

    PubMed

    An, Hai-bo; Li, Fei; Zhao, Meng-li; Liu, Ya-jun

    2015-11-01

    As an important indicator of forage production, aboveground biomass will directly illustrate the growth of forage grass. Therefore, Real-time monitoring biomass of forage grass play a crucial role in performing suitable grazing and management in artificial and natural grassland. However, traditional sampling and measuring are time-consuming and labor-intensive. Recently, development of hyperspectral remote sensing provides the feasibility in timely and nondestructive deriving biomass of forage grass. In the present study, the main objectives were to explore the robustness of published and optimized spectral indices in estimating biomass of forage grass in natural and artificial pasture. The natural pasture with four grazing density (control, light grazing, moderate grazing and high grazing) was designed in desert steppe, and different forage cultivars with different N rate were conducted in artificial forage fields in Inner Mongolia. The canopy reflectance and biomass in each plot were measured during critical stages. The result showed that, due to the influence in canopy structure and biomass, the canopy reflectance have a great difference in different type of forage grass. The best performing spectral index varied in different species of forage grass with different treatments (R² = 0.00-0.69). The predictive ability of spectral indices decreased under low biomass of desert steppe, while red band based spectral indices lost sensitivity under moderate-high biomass of forage maize. When band combinations of simple ratio and normalized difference spectral indices were optimized in combined datasets of natural and artificial grassland, optimized spectral indices significant increased predictive ability and the model between biomass and optimized spectral indices had the highest R² (R² = 0.72) compared to published spectral indices. Sensitive analysis further confirmed that the optimized index had the lowest noise equivalent and were the best performing index in

  11. Specific immunotherapy for common grass pollen allergies: pertinence of a five grass pollen vaccine.

    PubMed

    Moingeon, Philippe; Hrabina, Maud; Bergmann, Karl-Christian; Jaeger, Siegfried; Frati, Franco; Bordas, Véronique; Peltre, Gabriel

    2008-01-01

    Patients throughout Europe are concomitantly exposed to multiple pollens from distinct Pooideae species. Given the overlap in pollination calendars and similar grain morphology, it is not possible to identify which grass species are present in the environment from pollen counts. Furthermore, neither serum IgE reactivity nor skin prick testing allow the identification of which grass species are involved in patient sensitisation. Due to their high level of amino acid sequence homology (e.g., >90% for group 1, 55-80% for group 5), significant cross-immunogenicity is observed between allergens from Pooideae pollens. Nevertheless, pollen allergens also contain species-specific T or B cell epitopes, and substantial quantitative differences exist in allergen (e.g., groups 1 and 5) composition between pollens from distinct grass species. In this context, a mixture of pollens from common and well-characterised Pooideae such as Anthoxanthum odoratum, Dactylis glomerata, Lolium perenne, Phleum pratense and Poa pratensis is suitable for immunotherapy purposes because (1) it has been validated, both in terms of safety and efficacy, by established clinical practice; (2) it reflects natural exposure and sensitisation conditions; (3) it ensures a consistent and well-balanced composition of critical allergens, thus extending the repertoire of T and B cell epitopes present in the vaccine.

  12. Competition for nitrogen between Australian native grasses and the introduced weed Nassella trichotoma.

    PubMed

    Badgery, Warwick B; Kemp, David R; Michalk, David L; King, Warren M C G

    2005-10-01

    and Aims Nassella trichotoma is an unpalatable perennial grass weed that invades disturbed native grasslands in temperate regions of south-eastern Australia. This experiment investigated whether elevated N levels, often associated with disturbance, increases the competitiveness of N. trichotoma relative to C3 and C4 native Australian grasses. A pot experiment investigated competitive interactions between four native grasses, two C3 species (Microlaena stipoides and Austrodanthonia racemosa) and two C4 species (Themeda australis and Bothriochloa macra), and N. trichotoma at three different N levels (equivalent to 0, 60 and 120 kg ha-1) and three competing densities (zero, one and eight neighbouring plants), using an additive design. All native grasses were competitive with N. trichotoma at low N levels, but only M. stipoides was competitive at high N. High densities of native grasses (8:1) had a major competitive effect on N. trichotoma at all N levels. The competitive ranking of native grasses, across all N levels, on N. trichotoma was: M. stipoides>A. racemosa>B. macra>T. australis. The C3 species were generally more competitive than the C4 species and C4 grasses were not inherently more productive at low N levels, in contrast to the results of other studies. To resist invasion from N. trichotoma, these native grasses need to be maintained at a high density and/or biomass. The results do not support the theory that species such as N. trichotoma, with high tissues density, are always less competitive than those of low tissue density; in this case competitiveness depended on N levels. The ability of N. trichotoma to accumulate biomass at a higher rate than these native grasses, helps to explain why it is a major weed in disturbed Australian native grasslands.

  13. Four new species of the grass feeding leafhopper genus Nicolaus Lindberg (Hemiptera: Cicadellidae: Deltocephalinae) from the Indian subcontinent.

    PubMed

    Viraktamath, C A; Webb, M D

    2014-04-01

    The leafhopper genus Nicolaus Lindberg is recorded from India and Pakistan for the first time. Four new species, N. abuensis sp. nov., N. bidentatus sp. nov., N. cornutus sp. nov. and N. serratus sp. nov. are described and illustrated. N. bihamatus Xing & Li, earlier known from China is recorded from India and Pakistan. A key to the species of Nicolaus from the study area is provided.

  14. Linking the biology and physics of multifunctional grasses and soil hydrological function

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    MacLeod, C. J. A.; Binley, A.; Haygarth, P. M.; Humphreys, M. W.; Joynes, A.; Papadopoulos, A.; Skot, L.; Turner, L. B.; Watts, C.; Whalley, W. R.

    2009-04-01

    Sustainable grassland systems need to function during periods of water deficit and excess. Traditionally, forage grasses have been bred for drought resistance and winter hardiness traits. There is a need to select for and grow grass cultivars under drought and water logged conditions, whilst delivering environmental services. A limited number of studies have been carried out on inter-species variability of plant water status and growth during periods of water deficit. However, little is known about how different grasses influence soil profile hydraulic properties. We have established and monitored the influence of grass type on soil hydrological properties and rainfall-runoff relationships. Changes in soil hydrological properties have been monitored using a range of soil physical and geophysical methods. In this paper we report on a large interdisciplinary project that is advancing our understanding of how grass selection may benefit soil hydraulic functioning during periods of water excess.

  15. Effect of different levels of raw and heated grass pea seed (Lathyrus sativus) on nutrient digestibility, intestinal villus morphology and growth performance of broiler chicks.

    PubMed

    Riasi, A; Mahdavi, A H; Bayat, E

    2015-10-01

    This study aimed to investigate chemical composition and effect of different levels (0%, 10% and 20%) of raw grass pea (RGP) and heat-treated (120 °C for 30 min) grass pea seed (HGP) on nutrient digestibility, dressing percentage, relative internal organ weights, intestinal villous morphology and broiler chicks' performance. A total number of 200 day-old male chicks were raised under similar condition for 10 days. On day 11, chicks were randomly assigned to five dietary treatments and four replicates of 10 birds each. The result of chemical analysis indicated that Iranian grass pea seed has low levels of total and condensed tannin, and it may be considered as a good source of protein (36.1%) and energy (17.09 kJ GE/g). Heat treatment reduced (p < 0.05) the total and condensed tannin to 21% and 78% respectively. Grass peas seed had higher levels of nitrogen-free extract, P, Na, Mg and Zn than soya bean meal. The apparent digestibility of gross energy and lipid was affected (p < 0.01) by the treatment diets, and it was the lowest after feeding 20% of HGP (p < 0.05). The relative weight of breast and pancreas (p < 0.05) was affected by treatments. Percentage weight of breast and pancreas increased (p < 0.05) after feeding high levels (20%) of RGP and HGP. Substitution of 20% of RGP and HGP increased the duodenal crypt depth (p < 0.05); however, it had no suppressive effect on villus height as the absorptive surface of intestine. The feed conversion ratio was not affected by the treatments in the total experimental period. This study showed that, although the high level of grass pea seed caused a remarkable increase in the relative weight of pancreas and decreased the apparent digestibility of gross energy and lipid, it had beneficial effect on breast relative weight. It seems that heat processing is not effective method for improving quality of Iranian grass pea seed.

  16. The effect of exotic grass Urochloa decumbens (Stapf) R.D.Webster (Poaceae) in the reduction of species richness and change of floristic composition of natural regeneration in the Floresta Nacional de Carajás, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Ferreira, Leandro V; Parolin, Pia; Matos, Darley C L; Cunha, Denise A; Chaves, Priscilla P; Neckel, Selvino O

    2016-01-01

    The introduction of exotic species is considered as one of the major causes of biodiversity loss. The National Forest of Carajás is one of the largest mineral provinces in the world. Mining activities caused changes of the natural habitats, leaving degraded areas after the mineral exploitation. One of the mining areas within FLONA Carajás was used for the extraction of gold. In the process of exploitation, a huge depression was formed by the removal of soil which was mounded up nearby. To prevent soil erosion of these mounds, an exotic grass, Urochloa decumbens (Stapf) R.D.Webster (Poaceae) was planted. The objective of this study was to compare the impact of this non-native grass on species richness and species composition of the natural regeneration in the degraded areas. Four areas were compared, two with and two without presence of U. decumbens. In each area, twenty four 1m²/plots were established. Species richness of the regeneration areas and population sizes were significantly lower in the plots where the exotic grass was present. Our study shows that U. decumbens had a negative effect on species richness and population density, and its presence changed the species composition and distribution of life forms of the natural regeneration.

  17. Individuals, grasses, and forests of single- and multi-walled carbon nanotubes grown by supported Co catalysts of different nominal thicknesses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kakehi, Kazunori; Noda, Suguru; Maruyama, Shigeo; Yamaguchi, Yukio

    2008-08-01

    The relationships among the nominal thickness of Co catalyst, the structure of the catalyst particles, and the structure of carbon nanotubes (CNTs) growing from the catalyst during chemical vapor deposition were investigated. Various morphologies of CNTs such as individuals, random networks parallel to the surface of the substrate ('grasses'), and vertically aligned forests of single- and multi-walled carbon nanotubes were grown by only varying the nominal thickness of catalyst under the same reaction condition. These different morphologies at the same growth time were due to the different areal density rather than to the length of CNTs. With increasing nominal thickness of catalyst, the catalyst particles changed in diameter while their areal density remained relatively almost constant. The change in diameter possibly affected the number ratio of active catalyst particles to the whole particles, which in turn affected the areal density of CNTs and yielded the various morphologies. Longer growth time increased the CNT length, which caused further change in CNT morphologies from individuals to grasses and grasses to forests.

  18. Reversing land degradation through grasses: a systematic meta-analysis in the Indian tropics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mandal, Debashis; Srivastava, Pankaj; Giri, Nishita; Kaushal, Rajesh; Cerda, Artemi; Meherul Alam, Nurnabi

    2017-02-01

    Although intensive agriculture is necessary to sustain the world's growing population, accelerated soil erosion contributes to a decrease in the environmental health of ecosystems at local, regional and global scales. Reversing the process of land degradation using vegetative measures is of utmost importance in such ecosystems. The present study critically analyzes the effect of grasses in reversing the process of land degradation using a systematic review. The collected information was segregated under three different land use and land management situations. Meta-analysis was applied to test the hypothesis that the use of grasses reduces runoff and soil erosion. The effect of grasses was deduced for grass strip and in combination with physical structures. Similarly, the effects of grasses were analyzed in degraded pasture lands. The overall result of the meta-analysis showed that infiltration capacity increased approximately 2-fold after planting grasses across the slopes in agricultural fields. Grazing land management through a cut-and-carry system increased conservation efficiencies by 42 and 63 % with respect to reduction in runoff and erosion, respectively. Considering the comprehensive performance index (CPI), it has been observed that hybrid Napier (Pennisetum purpureum) and sambuta (Saccharum munja) grass seem to posses the most desirable attributes as an effective grass barrier for the western Himalayas and Eastern Ghats, while natural grass (Dichanthium annulatum) and broom grass (Thysanolaena maxima) are found to be most promising grass species for the Konkan region of the Western Ghats and the northeastern Himalayan region, respectively. In addition to these benefits, it was also observed that soil carbon loss can be reduced by 83 % with the use of grasses. Overall, efficacy for erosion control of various grasses was more than 60 %; hence, their selection should be based on the production potential of these grasses under given edaphic and agro

  19. Subtropical grass pollen allergens are important for allergic respiratory diseases in subtropical regions.

    PubMed

    Davies, Janet Mary; Li, Hongzhuo; Green, Melissa; Towers, Michelle; Upham, John Warrick

    2012-03-05

    Grass pollen allergens are a major cause of allergic respiratory disease but traditionally prescribing practice for grass pollen allergen-specific immunotherapy has favoured pollen extracts of temperate grasses. Here we aim to compare allergy to subtropical and temperate grass pollens in patients with allergic rhinitis from a subtropical region of Australia. Sensitization to pollen extracts of the subtropical Bahia grass (Paspalum notatum), Johnson grass (Sorghum halepense) and Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon) as well as the temperate Ryegrass (Lolium perenne) were measured by skin prick in 233 subjects from Brisbane. Grass pollen-specific IgE reactivity was tested by ELISA and cross-inhibition ELISA. Patients with grass pollen allergy from a subtropical region showed higher skin prick diameters with subtropical Bahia grass and Bermuda grass pollens than with Johnson grass and Ryegrass pollens. IgE reactivity was higher with pollen of Bahia grass than Bermuda grass, Johnson grass and Ryegrass. Patients showed asymmetric cross-inhibition of IgE reactivity with subtropical grass pollens that was not blocked by temperate grass pollen allergens indicating the presence of species-specific IgE binding sites of subtropical grass pollen allergens that are not represented in temperate grass pollens. Subtropical grass pollens are more important allergen sources than temperate grass pollens for patients from a subtropical region. Targeting allergen-specific immunotherapy to subtropical grass pollen allergens in patients with allergic rhinitis in subtropical regions could improve treatment efficacy thereby reducing the burden of allergic rhinitis and asthma.

  20. Greenhouse gas emissions from reed canary grass cultivation in peatland rewetted to different levels of ground water table

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karki, Sandhya; Elsgaard, Lars; Lærke, Poul Erik

    2014-05-01

    Rewetting of drained peatlands has been recommended to mitigate the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and to restore the carbon sink function of peatlands. Cultivation of bioenergy crops in rewetted peatland (paludiculture) is a new and emerging land use practice which can additionally reduce the CO2 emissions by substituting fossil fuel. However, information on the overall greenhouse gas balance from paludiculture is lacking. The objective of this study is to investigate the greenhouse gas emissions from peatlands grown with reed canary grass (RCG) and rewetted to various extents (i.e., to different controlled water table levels). In May 2012, soil mesocosms (60 cm height and 30 cm in diameter) were collected from a drained fen peatland used for agricultural purposes (Nørreå river valley, Denmark). The mesocosms were sown with RCG and manipulated to water table levels of 0, 10, 20, 30 and 40 cm below the soil surface. Gas fluxes of CO2, CH4 and N2O were measured at biweekly intervals with static chamber techniques from 10th July 2012 to 19th April 2013. GPP was estimated from the above ground biomass yield. The mean yield of dry biomass across all water table treatments was 6 t ha -1 with no significant differences between the treatments. However, there was significant effect of water table on all three GHG emissions. Raising the water table to the surface decreased both the ecosystem respiration (ER) and N2O emissions whereas CH4 emissions increased. In terms of CO2 equivalents the increase in CH4 emissions was compensated by the decrease in ER. ER and N2O emissions were highest when water table was at or below 20 cm in contrast to CH4 which increased above 20 cm. Total cumulative GHG emissions (for 283 days) was 0.1, 0.2, 0.7, 0.8 and 1.0 kg CO2 eq. m-2 respectively from the treatments at 0, 10, 20, 30 and 40 cm below the soil surface. Our results showed that in order to the get efficient mitigation in total GHG emission the water table should be maintained close

  1. Comparison of intake and digestibility of fresh Digitaria decumbens grass fed to sheep, indoors or at pasture, at two different stages of regrowth.

    PubMed

    Fanchone, A; Archimede, H; Delagarde, R; Boval, M

    2012-07-01

    The effect of two feeding systems (indoors and at pasture) on intake and digestion of fresh grass was studied at two stages of regrowth (21 and 35 days of regrowth) in two parallel experiments. In Experiment 1, 10 adult Martinik rams weighing, on average, 50.5 (± 0.9) kg, including four fitted with rumen cannula, were randomly allocated to two groups according to a 2 × 2 Latin Square design. These rams consumed a 21-day regrowth of Digitaria decumbens grass diet during two successive 28-day periods, indoors (five rams) or at pasture (five tethered rams). In Experiment 2, 10 other Martinik rams weighing, on average, 45.5 (± 0.9) kg, including four fitted with rumen cannula, were randomly allocated to two groups according to a 2 × 2 Latin Square design. These rams consumed a 35-day regrowth of D. decumbens grass diet during two successive 28-day periods, either indoors (five rams) or at pasture (five tethered rams). For the indoors groups, in vivo organic matter digestibility (OMD) was measured by total collection of feces. In addition, OMD was estimated indoors and at pasture using the fecal CP (CPf) method (OMDCPf). Organic matter intake (OMI) was then estimated using OMDCPf and fecal organic matter output (OMICPf). Correlations of 0.49 and 0.77 were found between in vivo OMD and OMDCPf (P < 0.05) and between OMI and OMICPf (P < 0.001), respectively. OMDCPf was 1.8% (P < 0.05) and 2.7% (P < 0.01) lower indoors than at pasture at 21 and 35 days of regrowth, respectively, whereas OMICPf indoors was 1.1 and 1.16 times that registered at pasture at 21 and 35 days of regrowth, respectively. The higher OMDCPf at pasture was linked to the higher selective behavior of rams at pasture, whereas the differences in OMICPf between the two feeding systems were linked to differences in the total bulk density of the grass. These studies show that differences in OMDCPf and OMICPf exist between animals fed indoors and at pasture with the same forage and that these differences

  2. Characterizing compositional changes of Napier grass at different stages of growth for biofuel and biobased products potential.

    PubMed

    Takara, Devin; Khanal, Samir Kumar

    2015-01-01

    Napier grass, Pennisetum purpureum, is a high yielding, perennial feedstock that can be harvested year-round in (sub)tropical geographies of the world. Because of its high moisture content (∼ 80%w/w), Napier grass presents a unique opportunity for fractionation into solid and liquid streams, where the extruded cellulosic fibers can serve as a substrate for biofuel production, and the nutrient-rich juice can serve as a substrate for co-product generation. The aim of this study evaluated the effects of biomass age on constituents relevant to biofuel and biobased product generation. Although obvious morphological changes can be observed in the field due to natural senescence, the results obtained in this work suggested that the cellulose content does not change significantly with respect to age. Data surrounding the hemicellulose and lignin contents, however, were inconclusive as their degree of significance varied with the statistics applied to analyze the raw data.

  3. Mathematical modelling of digesta passage rate, mean retention time and in vivo apparent digestibility of two different lengths of hay and big-bale grass silage in ponies.

    PubMed

    Moore-Colyer, M J S; Morrow, H J; Longland, A C

    2003-07-01

    Welsh-cross pony geldings (about 300 kg live weight) were used in a 4x4 Latin square experiment to determine the rate of passage and apparent digestibility of unchopped big-bale grass silage (BBL), chopped big-bale grass silage (BBS), unchopped grass hay (HL) and chopped grass hay (HS) offered at approximately 15 g/kg live weight per d. On day 1 of collection weeks, ponies were fed 85 g ytterbium chloride hexahydrate-marked feed 1.5 h after the morning meal. Total faecal collections commenced 8 h later and continued for 168 h. Apparent digestibilities of feed DM, organic matter (OM), crude protein (CP, Nx6.25), acid-detergent fibre (ADF) and neutral-detergent fibre (NDF) were also determined. Faecal excretion data were subjected to the models of Pond et al. (1988) and digesta mean retention time (MRT) calculated from these models and using the algebraic method of Thielmans et al. (1978). Silage had significantly (P<0.05) higher digestibilities of DM, OM, CP, ADF and NDF than hay; however, chop length had no effect. All the models of Pond et al. (1988) accurately described (R(2)>0.8) the pattern of faecal marker excretion. MRT of BBL (29.0 h)>BBS(27 h)>HS and HL (26 h). Compartmental analysis using the G3 model of Pond et al. (1988) showed BBL and HS diets had longer MRT in the time-dependent compartment, whereas BBS and HL had longer MRT in the time-independent compartment. Results from this experiment indicate that BBL and BBS are readily accepted and digested by ponies. While Yb is a successful external marker for determining total tract MRT and for modelling faecal excretion curves in horses, the results did not allow any definite conclusions to be drawn on digesta MRT within the different compartments of the equid gut.

  4. Examining differences between recovered and declining endangered species

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Abbitt, R.J.F.; Michael, Scott J.

    2001-01-01

    Between 1973 and 1999, 43 species in the United States were reclassified from endangered to threatened or removed entirely from the Endangered Species List. Of these, 23 were identified as recovered. In 1999 the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) published a list of 33 additional species for possible reclassification and/or delisting. We initiated this study to examine why some endangered species recover but others continue to decline and to identify differences in management activities between these two groups. We defined recovered/recovering species as previously recovered species and the additional recovered/recovering species listed by the USFWS. We defined declining species as those identified as declining in the most recent USFWS Report to Congress. Information on recovered/recovering and declining species was gathered from relevant literature, recovery plans, U.S. Federal Register documents, and individuals responsible for the recovery management of each species. We used this information to examine (1) the percentage of current and historic range covered by management activities; (2) threats affecting the species; (3) population sizes at the time of listing; (4) current versus historic range size; and (5) percentage of recovery management objectives completed. Although few statistical analyses provided significant results, those that did suggest the following differences between recovered/recovering and declining species: (1) recovered/recovering species face threats that are easier to address; (2) recovered/recovering species occupy a greater percentage of their historic range; and (3) recovered/recovering species have a greater percentage of their recovery management objectives completed. Those species with threats easier to address and that occupy a greater percentage of their historic range are recovered/recovering. In contrast, declining species face threats more difficult to address and occupy significantly less of their historic range. If this

  5. A novel method to characterize silica bodies in grasses.

    PubMed

    Dabney, Clemon; Ostergaard, Jason; Watkins, Eric; Chen, Changbin

    2016-01-01

    The deposition of silicon into epidermal cells of grass species is thought to be an important mechanism that plants use as a defense against pests and environmental stresses. There are a number of techniques available to study the size, density and distribution pattern of silica bodies in grass leaves. However, none of those techniques can provide a high-throughput analysis, especially for a great number of samples. We developed a method utilizing the autofluorescence of silica bodies to investigate their size and distribution, along with the number of carbon inclusions within the silica bodies of perennial grass species Koeleria macrantha. Fluorescence images were analyzed by image software Adobe Photoshop CS5 or ImageJ that remarkably facilitated the quantification of silica bodies in the dry ash. We observed three types of silica bodies or silica body related mineral structures. Silica bodies were detected on both abaxial and adaxial epidermis of K. macrantha leaves, although their sizes, density, and distribution patterns were different. No auto-fluorescence was detected from carbon inclusions. The combination of fluorescence microscopy and image processing software displayed efficient utilization in the identification and quantification of silica bodies in K. macrantha leaf tissues, which should applicable to biological, ecological and geological studies of grasses including forage, turf grasses and cereal crops.

  6. Measures of lamb production efficiency in a temperate grass-based system differing in ewe prolificacy potential and stocking rate.

    PubMed

    Earle, E; Boland, T M; McHugh, N; Creighton, P

    2017-08-01

    The objective of this study was to quantify the effects of ewe prolificacy potential (PP; predicted number of lambs born ewe yr), as dictated by sire breed type, and stocking rate (SR; ewes ha) on ewe production efficiency (kg lamb live weight weaned:kg ewe live weight mated), lamb growth, lamb carcass output, and dry matter (DM; kg) and energy (UFL; unit of energy kg DM) consumption (in the form of both grazed and conserved herbage, concentrate supplementation, and total) in a temperate grass-based lamb production system. The study was a 2 × 3 factorial design, consisting of 2 differing ewe prolificacy potentials (medium prolificacy [MP]-Suffolk-sired crossbred ewes and high prolificacy [HP]-Belclare-sired crossbred ewes) and 3 stocking rates: low (LSR; 10 ewes ha), medium (MSR; 12 ewes ha), and high (HSR: 14 ewes ha). Each treatment was managed in a 5-paddock rotational system for the duration of the study. The HP treatment weaned more lambs ewe and ha ( < 0.01), yielded a higher average daily live weight gain (ADG) ha ( < 0.001), produced an additional 50 kg of lamb carcass ha ( < 0.05), and required 13% less DM and UFL to produce a kg of lamb carcass ( < 0.001) compared to the MP treatment. High prolificacy potential ewes had a 4% higher production efficiency ( < 0.05) than MP ewes. Ewe prolificacy potential had no effect on the total quantity of DM and UFL consumed ewe and lamb unit ( > 0.05). Increasing stocking rate increased the number of lambs weaned ha ( < 0.001) and increased lifetime lamb ADG ha ( < 0.001). Lamb carcass output (kg) ha was highest at the HSR, intermediate at the MSR, and lowest at the LSR ( < 0.001). The quantity of DM and UFL consumed ewe and lamb unit and kg of lamb carcass produced ha increased as stocking rate increased ( < 0.001). In conclusion, results from this study demonstrate HP ewes to be more efficient in the production of lamb. Increasing stocking rate provides the opportunity to increase lamb carcass output ha; however

  7. Evaluation of different energy feeding systems with production data from lactating dairy cows offered grass silage-based diets.

    PubMed

    Yan, T; Agnew, R E; Murphy, J J; Ferris, C P; Gordon, F J

    2003-04-01

    A set of data from 838 lactating dairy cows, drawn from 12 long-term feeding studies (at least 8 wk/period), was used to evaluate the energy feeding systems for dairy cows currently adopted in Australia, France, The Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and the United States. The animals were offered mixed diets of concentrates, forage [grass silages (n = 33) and corn silages (n = 5)] ad libitum. Data used in the present evaluation were either measured [dry matter (DM) intake, milk production and live weight], measured/estimated [dietary metabolizable energy (ME) concentration] or estimated [milk energy output and live weight change (LWC)]. The mean-square prediction error (MSPE) was used for the evaluation. Total ME intake, milk yields, and LWC varied from 91 to 338 MJ/d, 7.7 to 48.9, and -1.23 to 1.73 kg/d, respectively. Australian and French systems predicted total energy requirement and milk yield relatively well, while British, Dutch and American systems underpredicted total energy requirement by proportionately 0.06, 0.04, and 0.03, respectively; and overpredicted milk yield by 0.09, 0.06, and 0.04. The Agricultural and Food Research Council (AFRC) each produced a relatively larger error of the bias (predicted - actual data) over the total MSPE for ME requirement and milk yield and a relatively smaller error of random than other systems. However, an addition of proportionately 0.05 to the total predicted ME requirement of AFRC, as suggested in this system and currently used in the UK, indicated the prediction accuracy of ME requirement and milk yield is similar to Australian and French systems. Nevertheless, all the systems had a poor prediction of LWC. For each system, the total prediction error (total MSPE) was mainly derived from the line (slope; 0.49 to 0.64 of total MSPE), while less derived from the random (0.20 to 0.48 of total MSPE), indicating a large variation between the predicted and actual LWC existed among individual cows. The residual plots of the

  8. Holocene re-colonisation, central-marginal distribution and habitat specialisation shape population genetic patterns within an Atlantic European grass species.

    PubMed

    Harter, D E V; Jentsch, A; Durka, W

    2015-05-01

    Corynephorus canescens (L.) P.Beauv. is an outbreeding, short-lived and wind-dispersed grass species, highly specialised on scattered and disturbance-dependent habitats of open sandy sites. Its distribution ranges from the Iberian Peninsula over Atlantic regions of Western and Central Europe, but excludes the two other classical European glacial refuge regions on the Apennine and Balkan Peninsulas. To investigate genetic patterns of this uncommon combination of ecological and biogeographic species characteristics, we analysed AFLP variation among 49 populations throughout the European distribution range, expecting (i) patterns of SW European glacial refugia and post-glacial expansion to the NE; (ii) decreasing genetic diversity from central to marginal populations; and (iii) interacting effects of high gene flow and disturbance-driven genetic drift. Decreasing genetic diversity from SW to NE and distinct gene pool clustering imply refugia on the Iberian Peninsula and in western France, from where range expansion originated towards the NE. High genetic diversity within and moderate genetic differentiation among populations, and a significant pattern of isolation-by-distance indicate a gene flow drift equilibrium within C. canescens, probably due to its restriction to scattered and dynamic habitats and limited dispersal distances. These features, as well as the re-colonisation history, were found to affect genetic diversity gradients from central to marginal populations. Our study emphasises the need for including the specific ecology into analyses of species (re-)colonisation histories and range centre-margin analyses. To account for discontinuous distributions, new indices of marginality were tested for their suitability in studies of centre-periphery gradients.

  9. Are soil mite assemblages structured by the identity of native and invasive alien grasses?

    PubMed

    St John, Mark G; Wall, Diana H; Hunt, H William

    2006-05-01

    Associations between plants and animals in aboveground communities are often predictable and specific. This has been exploited for the purposes of estimating the diversity of animal species based on the diversity of plant species. The introduction of invasive alien plants into an ecosystem can result in dramatic changes in both the native plant and animal assemblages. Few data exist at the species level to determine whether belowground animal assemblages share the same degree of association to plants. The hypotheses that soil mites (Acari) form assemblages specifically associated with different native grass species in an unmanipulated natural ecosystem and that invasive alien grasses will impact soil mite assemblage composition in this setting were tested. Soil mites sampled beneath five native and two invasive alien species of grasses at the Konza Prairie Biological Station, Kansas, USA, were similarly abundant, species rich, diverse, and taxonomically distinct. No mite species had affinities for a specific grass species. There was no evidence from analysis of similarity, canonical correspondence analysis, or a nonparametric assemblage analysis that the assemblage composition of soil mites was specific to grass species. Results suggest that soil mite assemblages were more related to characteristics of the plant assemblage as a whole or prevailing soil conditions. The most recent invasive alien grass did not support a successionally younger mite fauna, based on the ratio of mesostigmatid to oribatid mites, and neither of the two invasive grasses influenced mite assemblage structure, possibly because they had not yet substantially altered the soil environment. Our results suggest that extrapolations of soil mite diversity based on assumptions of plant specificity would be invalid.

  10. Mycorrhizal fungi affect root stele tissue in grasses.

    SciTech Connect

    Miller, R. M.; Hetrick, B. A. D.; Wilson, G. W. T.; Environmental Research; Northern Iowa Univ.; Kansas State Univ.

    1997-01-01

    Although arbuscular mycorrhizal symbiosis was initially believed to have little or no impact on root morphology, we now recognize that subtle changes do occur and that these changes may be of considerable consequence to host growth and nutrition, as well as functional growth strategy. In examining the stele and root diameters of C3 and C4 grasses, C4 grasses were demonstrated to have a significantly larger proportion of their fibrous roots occupied by stele tissue than do C3 grasses. In fact, functional growth strategy (C3 versus C4) was observed to be a relatively good predictor of stele area. Mycorrhizal fungi also influenced the amount of stele tissue, but the effect was not the same for both C3 and C4 grasses. The stele area of all C4 grasses except for Sorghastrum nutans was greater in the presence of mycorrhizal colonization. Among the C3 grasses, only Bromus inermis showed a significant increase, although Elymus cinereus and Lolium perenne displayed significant decreases in response to arbuscular mycorrhizal colonization. Changes in the stele area of the plant species were closely related to their responsiveness to mycorrhizal symbiosis and might in part explain both beneficial and detrimental responses of plants to mycorrhizae. An increase in stele circumference induced by mycorrhizae would allow for greater uptake and passage of water and nutrients to the vascular cylinder, and growth depressions could be a direct outcome of reduced stele circumference. Thus, differences in stele circumference represent a possible mechanism for mycorrhizal impacts on host plants. These findings indicate that structural differences among grasses are related to different functional capabilities and further emphasize the need for better integration of comparative anatomy and morphology procedures in the study of mycorrhizal symbiosis.

  11. Heat Shock Proteins in Association with Heat Tolerance in Grasses

    PubMed Central

    Xu, Yan; Zhan, Chenyang; Huang, Bingru

    2011-01-01

    The grass family Poaceae includes annual species cultivated as major grain crops and perennial species cultivated as forage or turf grasses. Heat stress is a primary factor limiting growth and productivity of cool-season grass species and is becoming a more significant problem in the context of global warming. Plants have developed various mechanisms in heat-stress adaptation, including changes in protein metabolism such as the induction of heat shock proteins (HSPs). This paper summarizes the structure and function of major HSPs, recent research progress on the association of HSPs with grass tolerance to heat stress, and incorporation of HSPs in heat-tolerant grass breeding. PMID:22084689

  12. Grass vs. legume forages for dairy cattle

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Alfalfa is the primary forage fed to lactating dairy cows; however, there is renewed interest in utilizing grass forages in lactating dairy cow diets particularly because of farm nutrient management issues. Yield and perceived quality is generally lower for grass species compared to legumes while ot...

  13. Native grass seeding and forb planting establishment

    Treesearch

    I Nan Vance; Andrew Neill; Frank Morton

    2006-01-01

    After a dense stand of conifers encroaching on an oak savanna/meadow was removed, exotic forbs and grasses quickly populated the newly disturbed area. Establishing desirable native grasses and forbs that contribute to native plant diversity and compete with exotic species could aid in restoring this oak savanna plant community. Two experiments were conducted over time...

  14. Plant species differences in particulate matter accumulation on leaf surfaces.

    PubMed

    Sæbø, A; Popek, R; Nawrot, B; Hanslin, H M; Gawronska, H; Gawronski, S W

    2012-06-15

    Particulate matter (PM) accumulation on leaves of 22 trees and 25 shrubs was examined in test fields in Norway and Poland. Leaf PM in different particle size fractions (PM(10), PM(2.5), PM(0.2)) differed among the species, by 10- to 15-folds at both test sites. Pinus mugo and Pinus sylvestris, Taxus media and Taxus baccata, Stephanandra incisa and Betula pendula were efficient species in capturing PM. Less efficient species were Acer platanoides, Prunus avium and Tilia cordata. Differences among species within the same genus were also observed. Important traits for PM accumulation were leaf properties such as hair and wax cover. The ranking presented in terms of capturing PM can be used to select species for air pollution removal in urban areas. Efficient plant species and planting designs that can shield vulnerable areas in urban settings from polluting traffic etc. can be used to decrease human exposure to anthropogenic pollutants.

  15. Pollinator coupling can induce synchronized flowering in different plant species.

    PubMed

    Tachiki, Yuuya; Iwasa, Yoh; Satake, Akiko

    2010-11-21

    Synchronous and intermittent plant reproduction has been identified widely in diverse biomes. While synchronous flowering is normally observed within the same species, different species also flower in synchrony. A well-known example of interspecific synchrony is "general flowering" in tropical rain forests of Southeast Asia. Environmental factors, such as low temperature and drought, have been considered as major trigger of general flowering. However, environmental cues are not enough to explain general flowering because some trees do not flower even when they encounter favorable environmental cues. We propose alternative explanation of general flowering; "pollinator coupling". When species flower synchronously, the elevated pollen and nectar resource may attract increased numbers of generalist pollinators, with a concomitant enhancement of pollination success (facilitation). However, under these circumstances, plants of different species may compete with one another for limited pollinator services, resulting in declines in pollination success for individual species (competition). Here, we present a model describing resource dynamics of individual trees serviced by generalist pollinators. We analyze combinations of conditions under which plants reproduce intermittently with synchronization within species, and/or (sometimes) between different species. We show that plants synchronize flowering when the number of pollinators attracted to an area increases at an accelerating rate with increasing numbers of flowers. In this case, facilitation of flowering by different species exceeds the negative influence of interspecific plant competition. We demonstrate mathematically that co-flowering of different species occurs under a much narrower range of circumstances than intraspecific co-flowering.

  16. The effect of nitrogen and glyphosate on survival and colonisation of perennial grass species in an agro-ecosystem: does the relative importance of survival decrease with competitive ability?

    PubMed

    Damgaard, Christian; Strandberg, Beate; Mathiassen, Solvejg K; Kudsk, Per

    2013-01-01

    The ecological success of a plant species is typically described by the observed change in plant abundance or cover, but in order to more fully understand the fundamental plant ecological processes, it is necessary to inspect the underlying processes of survival and colonization and how they are affected by environmental conditions. A general ecological hypothesis on the effect of environmental gradients on demographic parameters is proposed and tested. The hypothesis is that decreasing fitness or competitive ability along an environmental gradient is associated with an increasing importance of survival for regulating the abundance of the species. The tested hypothesis is related to both the stress gradient hypothesis and whether the importance of competition increases along productivity gradients. The combined effect of nitrogen and glyphosate on the survival and colonization probability of two perennial grass species, Festuca ovina and Agrostis capillaris, which are known to differ in their responses to both glyphosate and nitrogen treatments, is calculated using pin-point cover data in permanent frames. We found that the relative importance of survival increased with the level of glyphosate for the glyphosate sensitive A. capillaris and decreased for the glyphosate tolerant F. ovina. Likewise, increasing levels of nitrogen increased the importance of survival for the relative nitrophobic F. ovina. Consequently, the proposed hypothesis was corroborated in this specific study. The proposed method will enable predictions of the effects of agricultural practices on community dynamics in a relatively simple setup eliminating the need to quantify all the interaction among the species in the plant community. The method will be immediately useful for the regulation of non-cultivated buffer strips between agricultural fields and semi-natural and natural biotopes such as hedgerows and waterways.

  17. The Effect of Nitrogen and Glyphosate on Survival and Colonisation of Perennial Grass Species in an Agro-Ecosystem: Does the Relative Importance of Survival Decrease with Competitive Ability?

    PubMed Central

    Damgaard, Christian; Strandberg, Beate; Mathiassen, Solvejg K.; Kudsk, Per

    2013-01-01

    The ecological success of a plant species is typically described by the observed change in plant abundance or cover, but in order to more fully understand the fundamental plant ecological processes, it is necessary to inspect the underlying processes of survival and colonization and how they are affected by environmental conditions. A general ecological hypothesis on the effect of environmental gradients on demographic parameters is proposed and tested. The hypothesis is that decreasing fitness or competitive ability along an environmental gradient is associated with an increasing importance of survival for regulating the abundance of the species. The tested hypothesis is related to both the stress gradient hypothesis and whether the importance of competition increases along productivity gradients. The combined effect of nitrogen and glyphosate on the survival and colonization probability of two perennial grass species, Festuca ovina and Agrostis capillaris, which are known to differ in their responses to both glyphosate and nitrogen treatments, is calculated using pin-point cover data in permanent frames. We found that the relative importance of survival increased with the level of glyphosate for the glyphosate sensitive A. capillaris and decreased for the glyphosate tolerant F. ovina. Likewise, increasing levels of nitrogen increased the importance of survival for the relative nitrophobic F. ovina. Consequently, the proposed hypothesis was corroborated in this specific study. The proposed method will enable predictions of the effects of agricultural practices on community dynamics in a relatively simple setup eliminating the need to quantify all the interaction among the species in the plant community. The method will be immediately useful for the regulation of non-cultivated buffer strips between agricultural fields and semi-natural and natural biotopes such as hedgerows and waterways. PMID:23593371

  18. Comparison of grass and legume silages for milk production. 1. Production responses with different levels of concentrate.

    PubMed

    Dewhurst, R J; Fisher, W J; Tweed, J K S; Wilkins, R J

    2003-08-01

    Silages prepared from pure stands of ryegrass, alfalfa, white clover, and red clover over two successive year were offered to lactating dairy cows in two feeding experiments. Proportional mixtures of all cuts prepared in a yr were used to ensure that the forage treatments were representative of the crop. Additional treatments involved mixtures of grass silage with either white clover silage or red clover silage (50/50, on a DM basis). Silages were prepared in round bales, using a biological inoculant additive, and wilting for up to 48 h. Although the legumes were less suited to silage-making than grass, because of their higher buffering capacity and lower water-soluble carbohydrate content, all silages were well-fermented. A standard concentrate was offered at a flat-rate (8 kg/d in yr 1, and 4 or 8 kg/d in yr 2). All of the legume silages led to higher DM intake and milk yields than for the grass silage, with little effect on milk composition. Intake and production responses to legumes were similar at the two levels of concentrate feeding and with forage mixtures they were intermediate to those for the separate forages. An additional benefit of the clover silages, particularly red clover silage, was the increase in levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids, particularly alpha-linolenic acid, in milk. Legume silages also led to a lower palmitic acid percentage in milk. The efficiency of conversion of feed N into milk N declined with increasing levels of legume silage. White clover silage led to a higher N-use efficiency when the effect of N intake level is taken into account.

  19. Transgenerational soil-mediated differences between plants experienced or naïve to a grass invasion.

    PubMed

    Deck, Anna; Muir, Adrianna; Strauss, Sharon

    2013-10-01

    Invasive species may undergo rapid change as they invade. Native species persisting in invaded areas may also experience rapid change over this short timescale relative to native populations in uninvaded areas. We investigated the response of the native Achillea millefolium to soil from Holcus lanatus-invaded and uninvaded areas, and we sought to determine whether differential responses between A. millefolium from invaded (invader experienced) and uninvaded (invader naïve) areas were mediated by soil community changes. Plants grown from seed from experienced and naïve areas responded differently to invaded and uninvaded soil with respect to germination time, biomass, and height. Overall, experienced plants grew faster and taller than their naïve counterparts. Naïve native plants showed negative feedbacks with their home soil and positive feedbacks with invaded soil; experienced plants were less responsive to soil differences. Our results suggest that native plants naïve to invasion may be more sensitive to soil communities than experienced plants, consistent with recent studies. While differences between naïve and experienced plants are transgenerational, our design cannot differentiate between differences that are genetically based, plastic, or both. Regardless, our results highlight the importance of seed source and population history in restoration, emphasizing the restoration potential of experienced seed sources.

  20. Transgenerational soil-mediated differences between plants experienced or naïve to a grass invasion

    PubMed Central

    Deck, Anna; Muir, Adrianna; Strauss, Sharon

    2013-01-01

    Invasive species may undergo rapid change as they invade. Native species persisting in invaded areas may also experience rapid change over this short timescale relative to native populations in uninvaded areas. We investigated the response of the native Achillea millefolium to soil from Holcus lanatus-invaded and uninvaded areas, and we sought to determine whether differential responses between A. millefolium from invaded (invader experienced) and uninvaded (invader naïve) areas were mediated by soil community changes. Plants grown from seed from experienced and naïve areas responded differently to invaded and uninvaded soil with respect to germination time, biomass, and height. Overall, experienced plants grew faster and taller than their naïve counterparts. Naïve native plants showed negative feedbacks with their home soil and positive feedbacks with invaded soil; experienced plants were less responsive to soil differences. Our results suggest that native plants naïve to invasion may be more sensitive to soil communities than experienced plants, consistent with recent studies. While differences between naïve and experienced plants are transgenerational, our design cannot differentiate between differences that are genetically based, plastic, or both. Regardless, our results highlight the importance of seed source and population history in restoration, emphasizing the restoration potential of experienced seed sources. PMID:24198931

  1. Ensilage of tropical grasses mixed with legumes and molasses.

    PubMed

    Tjandraatmadja, M; Norton, B W; Mac Rae, I C

    1994-01-01

    The effects of adding two legumes, Gliricidia sepium and Leucaena leucocephala, cv. Cunningham, and molasses on the fermentation characteristics of silages made from two tropical grasses (Pangola grass, Digitaria decumbens, and Setaria sphacelata cv. Kazungula) were investigated. Pangola grass silages contained significantly higher contents of water-soluble carbohydrates and lactic acid than did setaria silages after 100 days fermentation, but there were no significant differences between the two silages in populations of lactic acid bacteria and contents of total N and NH3-N. Addition of either species of legume had no significant effect on fermentation acids and NH3-N contents, and numbers of lactic acid bacteria. Addition of both legumes reduced NH3-N production in the silages by 59% after 5 days' fermentation. Numbers of lactic acid bacteria were not significantly affected by the different treatments. Enterococcus faecalis represented 60% of the lactic acid bacteria isolated from the treated herbages prior to ensiling. By 100 days of fermentation, only lactobacilli were isolated: 82% homo-fermenters and 18% hetero-fermenters. Lactobacillus mesenteroides subsp. dextranicum was found only in the silage supplemented with 33% (w/w) legume. It was concluded that the low quality of tropical grasses used as feeds for ruminants may be significantly improved by ensiling these grasses with small amounts of molasses and with high-protein tree leaves.

  2. Population structure in the model grass Brachypodium distachyon is highly correlated with flowering differences across broad geographic areas

    SciTech Connect

    Tyler, Ludmila; Lee, Scott J.; Young, Nelson D.; DeIulio, Gregory A.; Benavente, Elena; Reagon, Michael; Sysopha, Jessica; Baldini, Riccardo M.; Troia, Angelo; Hazen, Samuel P.; Caicedo, Ana L.

    2016-04-29

    The small, annual grass Brachypodium distachyon (L.) Beauv., a close relative of wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) and barley (Hordeum vulgare L.), is a powerful model system for cereals and bioenergy grasses. Genome-wide association studies (GWAS) of natural variation can elucidate the genetic basis of complex traits but have been so far limited in B. distachyon by the lack of large numbers of well-characterized and sufficiently diverse accessions. Here, we report on genotyping-by-sequencing (GBS) of 84 B. distachyon, seven B. hybridum, and three B. stacei accessions with diverse geographic origins including Albania, Armenia, Georgia, Italy, Spain, and Turkey. Over 90,000 high-quality single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) distributed across the Bd21 reference genome were identified. Our results confirm the hybrid nature of the B. hybridum genome, which appears as a mosaic of B. distachyon-like and B. stacei-like sequences. Analysis of more than 50,000 SNPs for the B. distachyon accessions revealed three distinct, genetically defined populations. Surprisingly, these genomic profiles are associated with differences in flowering time rather than with broad geographic origin. High levels of differentiation in loci associated with floral development support the differences in flowering phenology between B. distachyon populations. Genome-wide association studies combining genotypic and phenotypic data also suggest the presence of one or more photoperiodism, circadian clock, and vernalization genes in loci associated with flowering time variation within B. distachyon populations. As a result, our characterization elucidates genes underlying population differences, expands the germplasm resources available for Brachypodium, and illustrates the feasibility and limitations of GWAS in this model grass.

  3. Overlap in nitrogen sources and redistribution of nitrogen between trees and grasses in a semi-arid savanna.

    PubMed

    Priyadarshini, K V R; Prins, Herbert H T; de Bie, Steven; Heitkönig, Ignas M A; Woodborne, Stephan; Gort, Gerrit; Kirkman, Kevin; Fry, Brian; de Kroon, Hans

    2014-04-01

    A key question in savanna ecology is how trees and grasses coexist under N limitation. We used N stable isotopes and N content to study N source partitioning across seasons from trees and associated grasses in a semi-arid savanna. We also used (15)N tracer additions to investigate possible redistribution of N by trees to grasses. Foliar stable N isotope ratio (δ(15)N) values were consistent with trees and grasses using mycorrhiza-supplied N in all seasons except in the wet season when they switched to microbially fixed N. The dependence of trees and grasses on mineralized soil N seemed highly unlikely based on seasonal variation in mineralization rates in the Kruger Park region. Remarkably, foliar δ(15)N values were similar for all three tree species differing in the potential for N fixation through nodulation. The tracer experiment showed that N was redistributed by trees to understory grasses in all seasons. Our results suggest that the redistribution of N from trees to grasses and uptake of N was independent of water redistribution. Although there is overlap of N sources between trees and grasses, dependence on biological sources of N coupled with redistribution of subsoil N by trees may contribute to the coexistence of trees and grasses in semi-arid savannas.

  4. Invasion of the exotic grasses: Mapping their progression via satellite

    Treesearch

    Eric B. Peterson

    2008-01-01

    Several exotic annual grass species are invading the Intermountain West. After disturbances including wildfire, these grasses can form dense stands with fine fuels that then shorten fire intervals. Thus invasive annual grasses and wildfire form a positive feedback mechanism that threatens native ecosystems. Chief among these within Nevada are Bromus tectorum...

  5. Biosurfactant-producing microorganism Pseudomonas sp. SB assists the phytoremediation of DDT-contaminated soil by two grass species.

    PubMed

    Wang, Beibei; Wang, Qingling; Liu, Wuxing; Liu, Xiaoyan; Hou, Jinyu; Teng, Ying; Luo, Yongming; Christie, Peter

    2017-09-01

    Phytoremediation together with microorganisms may confer the advantages of both phytoremediation and microbial remediation of soils containing organic contaminants. In this system biosurfactants produced by Pseudomonas sp. SB may effectively help to increase the bioavailability of organic pollutants and thereby enhance their microbial degradation in soil. Plants may enhance the rhizosphere environment for microorganisms and thus promote the bioremediation of contaminants. In the present pot experiment study, dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) residues underwent an apparent decline after soil bioremediation compared with the original soil. The removal efficiency of fertilizer + tall fescue, fertilizer + tall fescue + Pseudomonas, fertilizer + perennial ryegrass, and fertilizer + perennial ryegrass + Pseudomonas treatments were 59.4, 65.6, 69.0, and 65.9%, respectively, and were generally higher than that in the fertilizer control (40.3%). Principal coordinates analysis (PCoA) verifies that plant species greatly affected the soil bacterial community irrespective of inoculation with Pseudomonas sp. SB. Furthermore, community composition analysis shows that Proteobacteria, Acidobacteria and Actinobacteria were the three dominant phyla in all groups. In particular, the relative abundance of Pseudomonas for fertilizer + tall fescue + Pseudomonas (0.25%) was significantly greater than fertilizer + tall fescue and this was related to the DDT removal efficiency. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. How far can we simplify in vitro diagnostics for grass pollen allergy?: A study with 17 whole pollen extracts and purified natural and recombinant major allergens.

    PubMed

    van Ree, R; van Leeuwen, W A; Aalberse, R C

    1998-08-01

    Current diagnostics for grass pollen allergy are composed of mixtures of pollen of different grass species. Their complex composition hampers accurate standardization. The aim of the study was to investigate whether mixtures of grass pollen extracts can be replaced by a single pollen species and whether a single pollen species can be replaced by a limited number of purified natural or recombinant major allergens. Sera (n = 800) were selected on the basis of a general suspicion for inhalant allergy and tested in a RAST for IgE reactivity with pollen from 17 different grass species. Cross-reactivity of IgE responses was studied by means of RAST inhibition. Sera with positive test results for grass pollen were tested in a RAST for natural Lol p 1 and Lol p 5 and recombinant Phl p 1 and Phl p 5. Specific IgE antibodies against one or more of the 17 pollen species were detected in 209 of 800 sera (26.1%). The highest responses were observed against Poa pratensis followed by Festuca rubra, Phleum pratense, and Dactylis glomerata. IgE responses were clearly lower (approximately by a factor of 5) against only three species (Phragmites communis, Cynodon dactylon, and Zea mays). With the exception of a few low-responder sera, no sera were found to have negative test results to the high responder species and positive results to any of the other species. Sera with positive test results for grass pollen (n = 154) were tested with purified Lol p 1 and Lol p 5. IgE anti-Lol p 1 and Lol p 5 accounted for an average of 81% +/- 7% of total anti-grass pollen IgE. For 14 sera (all with low anti-grass pollen IgE titers), a RAST with purified allergens resulted in a false-negative diagnosis for grass pollen allergy. With recombinant Phl p 1 and Phl p 5, the mean IgE reactivity was 57% +/- 6% of the anti-grass pollen IgE response (n = 141), with 13 false-negative results. One grass species is sufficient for in vitro diagnosis of grass pollen allergy. With purified natural Lol p 1 and Lol

  7. Effects of elevated CO2 on photosynthetic traits of native and invasive C3 and C4 grasses.

    PubMed

    Hager, Heather A; Ryan, Geraldine D; Kovacs, Hajnal M; Newman, Jonathan A

    2016-05-31

    Rising CO2 is expected to result in changes in plant traits that will increase plant productivity for some functional groups. Differential plant responses to elevated CO2 are likely to drive changes in competitive outcomes, with consequences for community structure and plant diversity. Many of the traits that are enhanced under elevated CO2 also confer competitive success to invasive species, and it is widely believed that invasive species will be more successful in high CO2. However, this is likely to depend on plant functional group, and evidence suggests that C3 plants tend to respond more strongly to CO2. We tested the hypothesis that invasive species would be more productive than noninvasive species under elevated CO2 and that stronger responses would be seen in C3 than C4 plants. We examined responses of 15 grass species (eight C3, seven C4), classified as noninvasive or invasive, to three levels of CO2 (390, 700 and 1000 ppm) in a closed chamber experiment. Elevated CO2 decreased conductance and %N and increased shoot biomass and C/N ratio across all species. Differences between invasive and noninvasive species depended on photosynthetic mechanism, with more differences for traits of C3 than C4 plants. Differences in trait means between invasive and noninvasive species tended to be similar across CO2 levels for many of the measured responses. However, noninvasive C3 grasses were more responsive than invasive C3 grasses in increasing tiller number and root biomass with elevated CO2, whereas noninvasive C4 grasses were more responsive than invasive C4 grasses in increasing shoot and root biomass with elevated CO2. For C3 grasses, these differences could be disadvantageous for noninvasive species under light competition, whereas for C4 grasses, noninvasive species may become better competitors with invasive species under increasing CO2. The ecophysiological mechanisms underlying invasion success of C3 and C4 grasses may differ. However, given that the

  8. Nutritive value and fermentation parameters of warm-season grass silage

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The objective of this study was to investigate the nutritive value and fermentation characteristics of different species of warm-season grass silages treated with or without bacterial inoculants in the summer and fall. Nine forage species and cultivars, elephantgrass (Pennisetum purpureum Schumach),...

  9. 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.

  10. Bud-bank and tiller dynamics of co-occurring C3 caespitose grasses in mixed-grass prairie.

    PubMed

    Ott, Jacqueline P; Hartnett, David C

    2015-09-01

    Tiller recruitment from the belowground bud bank of caespitose grasses influences their ability to monopolize local resources and, hence, their genet fitness. Differences in bud production and outgrowth among tiller types within a genet and among species may explain co-occurrence of caespitose grasses. This study aimed to characterize genet bud-bank and tiller production and dynamics in two co-occurring species and compare their vegetative reproductive strategies. Bud-bank and tiller dynamics of Hesperostipa comata and Nassella viridula, dominant C3 caespitose grasses in the northern mixed-grass prairie of North America, were assessed throughout an annual cycle. The two species showed similar strategies, maintaining polycyclic tillers and thus creating mixed-age genet bud banks comprising multiple bud cohorts produced in different years. Vegetative tillers produced the majority of buds, whereas flowering tillers contributed little to the bud bank. Buds lived for at least 2 yr and were maintained in multiple developmental stages throughout the year. Because bud longevity rarely exceeded tiller longevity, tiller longevity drove turnover within the bud bank. Tiller population dynamics, more than bud production per tiller, determined the differential contribution of tiller types to the bud bank. Nassella viridula had higher bud production per tiller, a consistent annual tiller recruitment density, and greater longevity of buds on senesced and flowering tillers than H. comata. Co-occurring C3 caespitose grasses had similar bud-bank and tiller dynamics contributing to genet persistence but differed in bud characteristics that could affect genet longevity and species coexistence. © 2015 Botanical Society of America.

  11. Detection of Different DNA Animal Species in Commercial Candy Products.

    PubMed

    Muñoz-Colmenero, Marta; Martínez, Jose Luis; Roca, Agustín; Garcia-Vazquez, Eva

    2016-03-01

    Candy products are consumed all across the world, but there is not much information about their composition. In this study we have used a DNA-based approach for determining the animal species occurring in 40 commercial candies of different types. We extracted DNA and performed PCR amplification, cloning and sequencing for obtaining species-informative DNA sequences. Eight species were identified including fish (hake and anchovy) in 22% of the products analyzed. Bovine and porcine were the most abundant appearing in 27 samples each one. Most products contained a mixture of species. Marshmallows (7), jelly-types, and gummies (20) contained a significantly higher number of species than hard candies (9). We demonstrated the presence of DNA animal species in candy product which allow consumers to make choices and prevent allergic reaction.

  12. Chemical composition and in vitro gas production of silage from guinea grass, cassava peel and cashew apple waste at different periods of ensilage.

    PubMed

    Dele, P A; Jolaosho, A O; Arigbede, O M; Ojo, V O A; Amole, T A; Okukenu, O A; Akinyemi, B T

    2013-12-01

    A study was carried out to determine the quality of silage produced from guinea grass, cassava peel and cashew apple waste at different ensiling periods. The materials were mixed into nine different proportions and ensiled for 30, 60 and 90 days making twenty-seven (27) treatments with each replicated three times. At the expiration of ensiling duration, the jars were opened, the contents were mixed, oven-dried and the proximate composition and fibre fractions were determined. The results showed that there were significant (p < 0.05) reduction in the Dry Matter (DM), Crude Protein (CP) and Neutral Detergent Fibre (NDF) with increase in ensiling duration while the Non Fibre Carbohydrate (NFC) increased with increased ensiling duration. The highest CP content (14.44%) was obtained in 25% Guinea Grass (GG)+25% cassava peel (CAP)+50% Cashew Apple Waste (CAW) which was not significantly (p > 0.05) different from 100% CAW. The NDF varied (p < 0.05) from 44.21 in 75% CAP+25% CAW silage to 60.31 in 100% GG. The reduction in the CP and NDF of the silage is still within the range required for growth and maintenance in ruminant animals.

  13. Active Retrotransposons Are a Common Feature of Grass Genomes

    PubMed Central

    Vicient, Carlos M.; Jääskeläinen, Marko J.; Kalendar, Ruslan; Schulman, Alan H.

    2001-01-01

    A large fraction of the genomes of grasses, members of the family Graminae, is composed of retrotransposons. These elements resemble animal retroviruses in their structure and possess a life cycle similar to theirs that includes transcription, translation, and integration of daughter copies. We have investigated if retrotransposons are generally transcribed in the grasses and other plants, and whether the various families of elements are translationally and integrationally active in multiple grass species. A systematic search of 7.8 × 105 publicly available expressed sequence tags from plants revealed widespread retrotransposon transcripts at a frequency of one in 1,000. Monocot retrotransposons found relatively more expressed sequence tags from non-source species than did those of dicots. Antibodies were raised to the capsid protein, GAG, of BARE-1, a transcribed and translated copia-like retrotransposon of barley (Hordeum vulgare). These detected immunoreactive proteins of sizes identical to those of the BARE-1 GAG and polyprotein, respectively, in other species of the tribe Triticeae as well as in oats (Avena sativa) and rice (Oryza sativa). Retrotransposon-based markers showed integrational polymorphisms for BARE-1 in different subfamilies of the Graminae. The results suggest that grasses share families of transcriptionally, translationally, and integrationally active retrotransposons, enabling a comparative and integrative approach to understanding the life cycle of retrotransposons and their impact on the genome. PMID:11244109

  14. New microsatellite markers developed from Urochloa humidicola (Poaceae) and cross amplification in different Urochloa species

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Urochloa humidicola is a forage grass that grows in tropical regions and is recognized for its tolerance to seasonal flooding. It is a polyploid and apomictic species with high phenotypic plasticity. As molecular tools are important in facilitating the development of new cultivars and in the classification of related species, the objectives of this study were to develop new polymorphic microsatellite markers from an enriched library constructed from U. humidicola and to evaluate their transferability to other Urochloa species. Findings Microsatellite sequences were identified from a previously constructed enriched library, and specific primers were designed for 40 loci. Isolated di-nucleotide repeat motifs were the most abundant followed by tetra-nucleotide repeats. Of the tested loci, 38 displayed polymorphism when screened across 34 polyploid Urochloa sp. genotypes, including 20 accessions and six hybrids of U. humidicola and two accessions each from U. brizantha, U. dictyoneura, U. decumbens and U. ruziziensis. The number of bands per Simple Sequence Repeat (SSR) locus ranged from one to 29 with a mean of 11.5 bands per locus. The mean Polymorphism Information Content (PIC) of all loci was 0.7136, and the mean Discrimination Power (DP) was 0.7873. Six loci amplified in all species tested. STRUCTURE analysis revealed six different allelic pools, and the genetic similarity values analyzed using Jaccard's coefficient ranged from 0.000 to 0.913. Conclusions This work reports new polymorphic microsatellite markers that will be useful for breeding programs for Urochloa humidicola and other Urochloa species as well as for genetic map development, germplasm characterization, evolutionary and taxonomic studies and marker-assisted trait selection. PMID:22142493

  15. The effect of seaweed Ecklonia maxima extract and mineral nitrogen on fodder grass chemical composition.

    PubMed

    Ciepiela, Grażyna Anna; Godlewska, Agnieszka; Jankowska, Jolanta

    2016-02-01

    The objective of this study was to determine the effect of the biostimulant Kelpak and different nitrogen rates on cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin contents as well as non-structural carbohydrates in orchard grass and Braun's festulolium. The experiment was a split-plot arrangement with three replicates. It was set up at the experimental facility of the University of Natural Sciences and Humanities, Siedlce, in late April 2009. The following factors were examined: biostimulant with the trade name Kelpak SL applied at 2 dm(3) ha(-1) and a control-no biostimulant; nitrogen application rates 50 and 150 kg ha(-1) and a control (0 kg ha(-1)); pure stands of grass species grown in monoculture--orchard grass (Dactylis glomerata), cv. Amila,-Braun's festulolium (Festulolium braunii), cv. Felopa. Kelpak significantly increased non-structural carbohydrates, and increasing nitrogen rates reduced the concentration of these components in plants. Increasing nitrogen rates significantly decreased cellulose, hemicellulose, lignin and non-structural carbohydrate contents. Compared with orchard grass, Braun's festulolium proved to be of a higher nutritional value due to lower cellulose, hemicellulose and lignin contents and more non-structural carbohydrates. The aforementioned contents in the grasses differed significantly depending on the cut. Most cellulose and non-structural carbohydrates were determined in second-cut grass whereas most hemicellulose and lignin in second-cut grass.

  16. Septate endophyte colonization and host responses of grasses and forbs native to a tallgrass prairie.

    PubMed

    Mandyam, Keerthi; Fox, Chad; Jumpponen, Ari

    2012-02-01

    Native tallgrass prairies support distinct dark septate endophyte (DSE) communities exemplified by Periconia macrospinosa and Microdochium sp. that were recently identified as common root symbionts in this system. Since these DSE fungi were repeatedly isolated from grasses and forbs, we aimed to test their abilities to colonize different hosts. One Microdochium and three Periconia strains were screened for colonization and growth responses using five native grasses and six forbs in an in vitro system. Previously published data for an additional grass (Andropogon gerardii) were included and reanalyzed. Presence of indicative inter- and intracellular structures (melanized hyphae, microsclerotia, and chlamydospores) demonstrated that all plant species were colonized by the DSE isolates albeit to varying degrees. Microscopic observations suggested that, compared to forbs, grasses were colonized to a greater degree in vitro. Host biomass responses varied among the host species. In broad comparisons, more grass species than forbs tended to respond positively to colonization, whereas more forb species tended to be non-responsive. Based on the suspected differences in the levels of colonization, we predicted that tallgrass prairie grasses would support greater DSE colonization than forbs in the field. A survey of field-collected roots from 15 native species supported this hypothesis. Our study supports the "broad host range" of DSE fungi, although the differences in the rates of colonization in the laboratory and in the field suggest a greater compatibility between grasses and DSE fungi. Furthermore, host responses to DSE range from mutualism to parasitism, suggesting a genotype-level interplay between the fungi and their hosts that determines the outcome of this symbiosis.

  17. Arsenic and mercury in native aquatic bryophytes: differences among species.

    PubMed

    Díaz, Santiago; Villares, Rubén; López, Jesús; Carballeira, Alejo

    2013-04-01

    This study investigated the capacities of five species of aquatic bryophytes to accumulate As and Hg from their natural habitats in rivers in Galicia (NW Spain). The distributions of the concentrations of both elements in all species were skewed to the right, with a higher incidence of extreme values in the As data, which may indicate a greater degree of contamination by this metalloid. There were no significant differences in the accumulation of either of the elements between the different species studied, which justifies their combined use as biomonitors of As and Hg, at least in the study area.

  18. Defining species specific genome differences in malaria parasites.

    PubMed

    Liew, Kingsley J L; Hu, Guangan; Bozdech, Zbynek; Peter, Preiser R

    2010-02-23

    In recent years a number of genome sequences for different plasmodium species have become available. This has allowed the identification of numerous conserved genes across the different species and has significantly enhanced our understanding of parasite biology. In contrast little is known about species specific differences between the different genomes partly due to the lower sequence coverage and therefore relatively poor annotation of some of the draft genomes particularly the rodent malarias parasite species. To improve the current annotation and gene identification status of the draft genomes of P. berghei, P. chabaudi and P. yoelii, we performed genome-wide comparisons between these three species. Through analyses via comparative genome hybridizations using a newly designed pan-rodent array as well as in depth bioinformatics analysis, we were able to improve on the coverage of the draft rodent parasite genomes by detecting orthologous genes between these related rodent parasite species. More than 1,000 orthologs for P. yoelii were now newly associated with a P. falciparum gene. In addition to extending the current core gene set for all plasmodium species this analysis also for the first time identifies a relatively small number of genes that are unique to the primate malaria parasites while a larger gene set is uniquely conserved amongst the rodent malaria parasites. These findings allow a more thorough investigation of the genes that are important for host specificity in malaria.

  19. Soil properties and species composition under different grazing intensity in an alpine meadow on the eastern Tibetan Plateau, China.

    PubMed

    Yang, Zhen'an; Xiong, Wan; Xu, Yingyi; Jiang, Lin; Zhu, Erxiong; Zhan, Wei; He, Yixin; Zhu, Dan; Zhu, Qiuan; Peng, Changhui; Chen, Huai

    2016-12-01

    As the main form of land use and human disturbance of grassland, livestock grazing has great influences on the soil resources and plant communities. This study observed the variation of soil properties and community characteristics of four treatments of different grazing intensity (no grazing, UG; light grazing, LG; moderate grazing, MG; and heavy grazing, HG) in an alpine meadow of Sichuan Province on the northeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau. The results showed that grazing increased the pH, soil bulk density (BD), and contents of total carbon (TC) and total nitrogen (TN), and the BD increased while the others decreased with the grazing intensity. At the community level, with the increase of the grazing intensity, the vegetation coverage (R (2) = 0.61, P < 0.001), mean height of community (R (2) = 0.37, P < 0.001), aboveground biomass (R (2) = 0.54, P < 0.001), litter biomass (R (2) = 0.84, P < 0.001), and percentage of aboveground biomass of palatable grasses to total biomass (R (2) = 0.74, P < 0.001) significantly decreased, while the belowground biomass (R (2) = 0.72, P < 0.001) and the root/shoot (R/S) ratio (R (2) = 0.65, P < 0.001) increased. The species richness was the greatest at LG and the total biomass at UG. With grazing, the dominant species of the plant community shifted from palatable grasses (Gramineae and Cyperaceae) to unpalatable grasses (Compositae and Ranunculaceae). Based on the results, LG may be the optimal grassland management mode to be used in the long time in the alpine meadow of the Tibetan Plateau.

  20. Genome-Wide Transcriptional Profiling and Metabolic Analysis Uncover Multiple Molecular Responses of the Grass Species Lolium perenne Under Low-Intensity Xenobiotic Stress

    PubMed Central

    Serra, Anne-Antonella; Couée, Ivan; Heijnen, David; Michon-Coudouel, Sophie; Sulmon, Cécile; Gouesbet, Gwenola

    2015-01-01

    Lolium perenne, which is a major component of pastures, lawns, and grass strips, can be exposed to xenobiotic stresses due to diffuse and residual contaminations of soil. L. perenne was recently shown to undergo metabolic adjustments in response to sub-toxic levels of xenobiotics. To gain insight in such chemical stress responses, a de novo transcriptome analysis was carried out on leaves from plants subjected at the root level to low levels of xenobiotics, glyphosate, tebuconazole, and a combination of the two, leading to no adverse physiological effect. Chemical treatments influenced significantly the relative proportions of functional categories and of transcripts related to carbohydrate processes, to signaling, to protein-kinase cascades, such as Serine/Threonine-protein kinases, to transcriptional regulations, to responses to abiotic or biotic stimuli and to responses to phytohormones. Transcriptomics-based expressions of genes encoding different types of SNF1 (sucrose non-fermenting 1)-related kinases involved in sugar and stress signaling or encoding key metabolic enzymes were in line with specific qRT-PCR analysis or with the important metabolic and regulatory changes revealed by metabolomic analysis. The effects of pesticide treatments on metabolites and gene expression strongly suggest that pesticides at low levels, as single molecule or as mixture, affect cell signaling and functioning even in the absence of major physiological impact. This global analysis of L. perenne therefore highlighted the interactions between molecular regulation of responses to xenobiotics, and also carbohydrate dynamics, energy dysfunction, phytohormones and calcium signaling. PMID:26734031

  1. Genome-Wide Transcriptional Profiling and Metabolic Analysis Uncover Multiple Molecular Responses of the Grass Species Lolium perenne Under Low-Intensity Xenobiotic Stress.

    PubMed

    Serra, Anne-Antonella; Couée, Ivan; Heijnen, David; Michon-Coudouel, Sophie; Sulmon, Cécile; Gouesbet, Gwenola

    2015-01-01

    Lolium perenne, which is a major component of pastures, lawns, and grass strips, can be exposed to xenobiotic stresses due to diffuse and residual contaminations of soil. L. perenne was recently shown to undergo metabolic adjustments in response to sub-toxic levels of xenobiotics. To gain insight in such chemical stress responses, a de novo transcriptome analysis was carried out on leaves from plants subjected at the root level to low levels of xenobiotics, glyphosate, tebuconazole, and a combination of the two, leading to no adverse physiological effect. Chemical treatments influenced significantly the relative proportions of functional categories and of transcripts related to carbohydrate processes, to signaling, to protein-kinase cascades, such as Serine/Threonine-protein kinases, to transcriptional regulations, to responses to abiotic or biotic stimuli and to responses to phytohormones. Transcriptomics-based expressions of genes encoding different types of SNF1 (sucrose non-fermenting 1)-related kinases involved in sugar and stress signaling or encoding key metabolic enzymes were in line with specific qRT-PCR analysis or with the important metabolic and regulatory changes revealed by metabolomic analysis. The effects of pesticide treatments on metabolites and gene expression strongly suggest that pesticides at low levels, as single molecule or as mixture, affect cell signaling and functioning even in the absence of major physiological impact. This global analysis of L. perenne therefore highlighted the interactions between molecular regulation of responses to xenobiotics, and also carbohydrate dynamics, energy dysfunction, phytohormones and calcium signaling.

  2. The lymphoid system: a review of species differences.

    PubMed

    Haley, Patrick J

    2017-04-01

    While an understanding of the structure and function of a generically described immune system is essential in contemporary biomedicine, it is clear that a one-size-fits-all approach applied across multiple species is fraught with contradictions and inconsistencies. Nevertheless, the breakthroughs achieved in immunology following the application of observations in murine systems to that of man have been pivotal in the advancement of biology and human medicine. However, as additional species have been used to further address biologic and safety assessment questions relative to the structure and function of the immune system, it has become clear that there are differences across species, gender, age and strain that must be considered. The meaningfulness of these differences must be determined on a case-by-case basis. This review article attempts to collect, consolidate and discuss some of these species differences thereby aiding in the accurate placement of new observations in a proper immunobiological and immunopathological perspective.

  3. The lymphoid system: a review of species differences

    PubMed Central

    Haley, Patrick J.

    2016-01-01

    While an understanding of the structure and function of a generically described immune system is essential in contemporary biomedicine, it is clear that a one-size-fits-all approach applied across multiple species is fraught with contradictions and inconsistencies. Nevertheless, the breakthroughs achieved in immunology following the application of observations in murine systems to that of man have been pivotal in the advancement of biology and human medicine. However, as additional species have been used to further address biologic and safety assessment questions relative to the structure and function of the immune system, it has become clear that there are differences across species, gender, age and strain that must be considered. The meaningfulness of these differences must be determined on a case-by-case basis. This review article attempts to collect, consolidate and discuss some of these species differences thereby aiding in the accurate placement of new observations in a proper immunobiological and immunopathological perspective. PMID:28458449

  4. Global Expression Patterns of Three Festuca Species Exposed to Different Doses of Glyphosate Using the Affymetrix GeneChip Wheat Genome Array

    PubMed Central

    Cebeci, Ozge; Budak, Hikmet

    2009-01-01

    Glyphosate has been shown to act as an inhibitor of an aromatic amino acid biosynthetic pathway, while other pathways that may be affected by glyphosate are not known. Cross species hybridizations can provide a tool for elucidating biological pathways conserved among organisms. Comparative genome analyses have indicated a high level of colinearity among grass species and Festuca, on which we focus here, and showed rearrangements common to the Pooideae family. Based on sequence conservation among grass species, we selected the Affymetrix GeneChip Wheat Genome Array as a tool for the analysis of expression profiles of three Festuca (fescue) species with distinctly different tolerances to varying levels of glyphosate. Differences in transcript expression were recorded upon foliar glyphosate application at 1.58 mM and 6.32 mM, representing 5% and 20%, respectively, of the recommended rate. Differences highlighted categories of general metabolic processes, such as photosynthesis, protein synthesis, stress responses, and a larger number of transcripts responded to 20% glyphosate application. Differential expression of genes encoding proteins involved in the shikimic acid pathway could not be identified by cross hybridization. Microarray data were confirmed by RT-PCR and qRT-PCR analyses. This is the first report to analyze the potential of cross species hybridization in Fescue species and the data and analyses will help extend our knowledge on the cellular processes affected by glyphosate. PMID:20182642

  5. Quantitative analysis of diet structure by real-time PCR, reveals different feeding patterns by two dominant grasshopper species

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Xunbing; Wu, Huihui; McNeill, Mark Richard; Qin, Xinghu; Ma, Jingchuan; Tu, Xiongbing; Cao, Guangchun; Wang, Guangjun; Nong, Xiangqun; Zhang, Zehua

    2016-01-01

    Studies on grasshopper diets have historically employed a range of methodologies, each with certain advantages and disadvantages. For example, some methodologies are qualitative instead of quantitative. Others require long experimental periods or examine population-level effects, only. In this study, we used real-time PCR to examine diets of individual grasshoppers. The method has the advantage of being both fast and quantitative. Using two grasshopper species, Oedaleus asiaticus and Dasyhippus barbipes, we designed ITS primer sequences for their three main host plants, Stipa krylovii, Leymus chinensis and Cleistogenes squarrosa and used real-time PCR method to test diet structure both qualitatively and quantitatively. The lowest detection efficiency of the three grass species was ~80% with a strong correlation between actual and PCR-measured food intake. We found that Oedaleus asiaticus maintained an unchanged diet structure across grasslands with different grass communities. By comparison, Dasyhippus barbipes changed its diet structure. These results revealed why O. asiaticus distribution is mainly confined to Stipa-dominated grassland, and D. barbipes is more widely distributed across Inner Mongolia. Overall, real-time PCR was shown to be a useful tool for investigating grasshopper diets, which in turn offers some insight into grasshopper distributions and improved pest management. PMID:27562455

  6. Quantitative analysis of diet structure by real-time PCR, reveals different feeding patterns by two dominant grasshopper species.

    PubMed

    Huang, Xunbing; Wu, Huihui; McNeill, Mark Richard; Qin, Xinghu; Ma, Jingchuan; Tu, Xiongbing; Cao, Guangchun; Wang, Guangjun; Nong, Xiangqun; Zhang, Zehua

    2016-08-26

    Studies on grasshopper diets have historically employed a range of methodologies, each with certain advantages and disadvantages. For example, some methodologies are qualitative instead of quantitative. Others require long experimental periods or examine population-level effects, only. In this study, we used real-time PCR to examine diets of individual grasshoppers. The method has the advantage of being both fast and quantitative. Using two grasshopper species, Oedaleus asiaticus and Dasyhippus barbipes, we designed ITS primer sequences for their three main host plants, Stipa krylovii, Leymus chinensis and Cleistogenes squarrosa and used real-time PCR method to test diet structure both qualitatively and quantitatively. The lowest detection efficiency of the three grass species was ~80% with a strong correlation between actual and PCR-measured food intake. We found that Oedaleus asiaticus maintained an unchanged diet structure across grasslands with different grass communities. By comparison, Dasyhippus barbipes changed its diet structure. These results revealed why O. asiaticus distribution is mainly confined to Stipa-dominated grassland, and D. barbipes is more widely distributed across Inner Mongolia. Overall, real-time PCR was shown to be a useful tool for investigating grasshopper diets, which in turn offers some insight into grasshopper distributions and improved pest management.

  7. Method and device for identifying different species of honeybees

    DOEpatents

    Kerr, Howard T.; Buchanan, Michael E.; Valentine, Kenneth H.

    1989-01-01

    A method and device have been provided for distinguishing Africanized honeybees from European honeybees. The method is based on the discovery of a distinct difference in the acoustical signatures of these two species of honeybees in flight. The European honeybee signature has a fundamental power peak in the 210 to 240 Hz range while the Africanized honeybee signature has a fundamental power peak in the 260 to 290 Hz range. The acoustic signal produced by honeybees is analyzed by means of a detecting device to quickly determine the honeybee species through the detection of the presence of frequencies in one of these distinct ranges. The device includes a microphone for acoustical signal detection which feeds the detected signal into a frequency analyzer which is designed to detect the presence of either of the known fundamental wingbeat frequencies unique to the acoustical signatures of these species as an indication of the identity of the species and indicate the species identity on a readout device.

  8. Microsatellite flanking region similarities among different loci within insect species.

    PubMed

    Meglécz, E; Anderson, S J; Bourguet, D; Butcher, R; Caldas, A; Cassel-Lundhagen, A; d'Acier, A C; Dawson, D A; Faure, N; Fauvelot, C; Franck, P; Harper, G; Keyghobadi, N; Kluetsch, C; Muthulakshmi, M; Nagaraju, J; Patt, A; Péténian, F; Silvain, J-F; Wilcock, H R

    2007-04-01

    Although microsatellites are ubiquitous in eukaryota, the number of available markers varies strongly among taxa. This meta-analysis was conducted on 32 insect species. Sequences were obtained from two assembled whole genomes, whole genome shotgun (WGS) sequences from 10 species and screening partial genomic libraries for microsatellites from 23 species. We have demonstrated: (1) strong differences in the abundance of microsatellites among species; (2) that microsatellites within species are often grouped into families based on similarities in their flanking sequences; (3) that the proportion of microsatellites grouped into families varies strongly among taxa; and (4) that microsatellite families were significantly more often associated with transposable elements - or their remnants - than unique microsatellite sequences.

  9. Mastomys (rodentia: muridae) species distinguished by hemoglobin pattern differences.

    PubMed

    Robbins, C B; Krebs, J W; Johnson, K M

    1983-05-01

    Hemoglobin electrophoresis patterns were found to be reliable markers for distinguishing two species of Mastomys in Sierra Leone having 32 and 38 chromosomes. All 32-chromosome animals exhibited a single hemoglobin pattern, whereas those with 38-chromosomes had four distinguishable patterns. Both karyotypes were present throughout Sierra Leone. The 38-chromosome species was more prevalent in the Guinea savanna zone to the north, while the 32-chromosome species was most dominant in human-modified high forest areas of the eastern and southern parts of the country. In almost all situations the 32-chromosome species was more common in houses than in bush habitats; the reverse was true for Mastomys having 38 chromosomes. Analysis of hemoglobin patterns thus becomes useful for species identification, and is necessary to understand the roles of the different Mastomys forms as reservoirs of human diseases, such as Lassa fever in West Africa.

  10. Local versus landscape-scale effects of savanna trees on grasses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Riginos, C.; Grace, J.B.; Augustine, D.J.; Young, T.P.

    2009-01-01

    1. Savanna ecosystems - defined by the coexistence of trees and grasses - cover more than one-fifth the world's land surface and harbour most of the world's rangelands, livestock and large mammal diversity. Savanna trees can have a variety of effects on grasses, with consequences for the wild and domestic herbivores that depend on them. 2.Studies of these effects have focused on two different spatial scales. At the scale of individual trees, many studies have shown net positive effects of trees on sub-canopy grass nutrient concentrations and biomass. At the landscape scale, other studies have shown negative effects of high tree densities on grass productivity. These disparate results have led to different conclusions about the effects of trees on forage quality and ungulate nutrition in savannas. 3.We integrate these approaches by examining the effects of trees on grasses at both spatial scales and across a range of landscape-scale tree densities. 4.We quantified grass biomass, species composition and nutrient concentrations in these different contexts in an Acacia drepanolobium savanna in Laikipia, Kenya. Individual trees had positive effects on grass biomass, most likely because trees enrich soil nitrogen. Grass leaf phosphorus in sub-canopy areas, however, was depressed. The effects of individual trees could explain the effects of increasing landscape-scale tree cover for the biomass of only two of the four dominant grass species. 5.The negative effects of trees on grass and soil phosphorus, combined with depressed grass productivity in areas of high tree cover, suggest that ungulate nutrition may be compromised in areas with many trees. 6.Synthesis. We conclude that few, isolated trees may have positive local effects on savanna grasses and forage, but in areas of high tree density the negative landscape-scale effects of trees are likely to outweigh these positive effects. In savannas and other patchy landscapes, attempts to predict the consequences of changes

  11. Production, Nutritional Quality and In vitro Methane Production from Andropogon gayanus Grass Harvested at Different Maturities and Preserved as Hay or Silage

    PubMed Central

    Ribeiro, G. O.; Teixeira, A. M.; Velasco, F. O.; Faria Júnior, W. G.; Pereira, L. G. R.; Chaves, A. V.; Gonçalves, L. C.; McAllister, T. A.

    2014-01-01

    Andropogon gayanus is an important grass due to its high biomass production, drought tolerance and favorable growth on low fertility acidic soils. Currently, there is little research on the impact of growth stage on the nutritional quality or the degree of CH4 production that may arise from this forage during ruminal fermentation. The objectives of this study were to determine the effects of regrowth stage of A. gayanus on its chemical composition, in vitro production of gas and CH4, as well as in vitro dry matter (DM) digestibility when grown under tropical Brazilian conditions and conserved as hay or as silage. The nutritional value of A. gayanus grass declined with increasing maturity; however digestible DM yield linearly increased. After 112 d of regrowth, A. gayanus produced higher quality silage (higher lactate and lower pH and butyrate content) and higher DM yield. However, the low levels of crude protein at this time would make protein supplementation a necessity for proper rumen fermentation. No differences in CH4 kinetic parameters were found with advancing maturity or preservation method (hay or silage). PMID:25049959

  12. A comparative analysis of the evolution, expression, and cis-regulatory element of polygalacturonase genes in grasses and dicots.

    PubMed

    Liang, Ying; Yu, Youjian; Cui, Jinlong; Lyu, Meiling; Xu, Liai; Cao, Jiashu

    2016-11-01

    Cell walls are a distinguishing characteristic of plants essential to their survival. The pectin content of primary cell walls in grasses and dicots is distinctly different. Polygalacturonases (PGs) can degrade pectins and participate in multiple developmental processes of plants. This study comprehensively compared the evolution, expression, and cis-regulatory element of PGs in grasses and dicots. A total of 577 PGs identified from five grasses and five dicots fell into seven clades. Evolutionary analysis demonstrated the distinct differences between grasses and dicots in patterns of gene duplication and loss, and evolutionary rates. Grasses generally contained much fewer clade C and F members than dicots. We found that this disparity was the result of less duplication and more gene losses in grasses. More duplications occurred in clades D and E, and expression analysis showed that most of clade E members were expressed ubiquitously at a high overall level and clade D members were closely related to male reproduction in both grasses and dicots, suggesting their biological functions were highly conserved across species. In addition to the general role in reproductive development, PGs of clades C and F specifically played roles in root development in dicots, shedding light on organ differentiation between the two groups of plants. A regulatory element analysis of clade C and F members implied that possible functions of PGs in specific biological responses contributed to their expansion and preservation. This work can improve the knowledge of PGs in plants generally and in grasses specifically and is beneficial to functional studies.

  13. [Changes of microbial biomass carbon and enzyme activities in rice-barnyard grass coexisted soils].

    PubMed

    Li, Hai-Bo; Kong, Chui-Hua

    2008-10-01

    Taking barnyard grass (Echinochloa crus-galli), allelopathic rice (Oryza sativa) PI312777, and non-allelopathic rice Liaojing-9 as test materials, this paper studied the changes of microbial biomass C and of dehydrogenase, urease and invertase activities in soils under 1 : 1 rice-barnyard grass coexistence. The results showed that with the coexistence of barnyard grass, the microbial biomass C in rhizosphere soil of PI312777 was decreased by 50.52% (P < 0.01), while that in inter-row soil was increased. The microbial biomass C in rhizosphere soil of Liaojing-9 was also decreased by 38.99% (P < 0.01), but no significant difference was observed in inter-row soil. The dehydrogenase activity in rhizosphere soils of the two rice varieties were decreased by 20% or more (P < 0.05), but the urease and invertase activities in rhizosphere soil of PI312777 were significantly stimulated (P < 0.01). The invertase activity in rhizosphere soil of Liaojing-9 was inhibited by coexisting barnyard grass, but urease activity had less change. As a result, the allelopathic traits of rice variety led to a significant decrease of microbial biomass C and an increase of urease and invertase activities in rhizosphere soil under barnyard grass coexistence, implying that soil microbial biomass and enzymes might play essential roles in species interactions between rice and barnyard grass, and allelopathic rice had its advantage in resistance to barnyard grass.

  14. Genetic variations of body weight and GCRV resistance in a random mating population of grass carp

    PubMed Central

    Huang, Rong; Sun, Jiaxian; Luo, Qing; He, Libo; Liao, Lanjie; Li, Yongming; Guo, Fuhua; Zhu, Zuoyan; Wang, Yaping

    2015-01-01

    The grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idellus) is an important species in freshwater aquaculture both in China and on a global scale. Variety degeneration and frequent diseases have limited the further development of grass carp aquaculture. Thus, new and improved varieties are required. Here, we identified and assessed the body weight and disease resistance in a random mating population of 19 ♀ × 22 ♂ grass carp, which were derived from different water systems. In both the growth experimental group of 10,245 fish and grass carp reovirus (GCRV)-infected group with 10,000 fish, 78 full-sib families were statistically analyzed for body weight and GCRV resistance. The findings showed that body weight traits had low heritability (0.11 ± 0.04, 0.10 ± 0.03 and 0.12 ± 0.05), GCRV resistance traits had high heritability (0.63 ± 0.11); body weight was higher in 3 families, whereas GCRV resistance was significantly greater in 11 families. Our results confirmed that the natural germplasm resources of wild grass carp were genetically diverse. Breeding of GCRV resistant varieties of grass carp have better genetic basis. This study provides the basis for constructing basal populations for grass carp selective breeding, quantitative trait loci (QTL) and genome-wide association studies (GWAS) analysis. PMID:26439690

  15. Development of innovative technique that may be used as models for the increase of biomass production with grasses and other species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burton, G. W.; Hanna, W. W.

    1981-09-01

    Techniques for biomass increase are discussed: irradiation breeding of sterile triploid turf bermuda grasses; irradiation breeding of sterile Coastcross-1, a forage grass hybrid to increase winter hardiness; heterosis resulting from crossing specific irradiation induced mutants with their normal inbred parent; use of mitomycin and streptomycin to create cytoplasmic male sterile mutants in pearl millet; biomass of napiergrass; evaluation of mutagen induced lignin mutants to maximize metabolizable energy in sorghum; interspecific crosses in Pennisetum; production of homozygous translocation tester stocks; use of radiation to induce and transfer reproductive behavior in plants; and genetics of radiation induced mutations.

  16. Trichuris suis and Trichuris trichiura are different nematode species.

    PubMed

    Cutillas, C; Callejón, R; de Rojas, M; Tewes, B; Ubeda, J M; Ariza, C; Guevara, D C

    2009-09-01

    In this paper, a morphological and biometrical study by optical microscopy and scanning electronic microscopy (SEM) of Trichuris suis isolated from different hosts (Sus scrofa domestica and Sus scrofa scrofa) and Trichuris trichiura isolated from chimpanzee, has been carried out. Our results demonstrate the existence of typical pericloacal papillae in both species. Biometrical parameters of T. suis and T. trichiura overlapped but males and females of T. trichiura tended to be shorter and thinner than those of T. suis. Our results suggest that T. suis and T. trichiura cannot be differentiated using standard procedures as morphological and biometrical determinations. Thus, the ITS1-5.8S-ITS2 region of the ribosomal DNA was sequenced to allow a differentiation between T. suis and T. trichiura on genetic level. The ITS1 and ITS2 sequences derived from T. trichiura eggs isolated from feces of primates (Colobus guereza kikuyensis and Nomascus gabriellae) showed clear differences to the respective sequences of T. suis derived from eggs of different porcine hosts. The 5.8S gene was similar between the two species. Sequences obtained from different populations of the same species showed no significant differences indicating that the ITS1-5.8S-ITS2 sequences reported in this study are representative for T. trichiura and T. suis, respectively. Phylogenetic relationships have been determined attending to the ITS1 and ITS2 sequences from different species of the genus Trichuris. In conclusion, T. trichiura and T. suis are considered to be closely related but genetically different species. Both species can be easily and reliably distinguished by a PCR-RFLP analysis of the ITS1 and ITS2 sequences with different restriction enzymes.

  17. Metabolism of 1,3-butadiene: species differences.

    PubMed

    Henderson, R F; Thornton-Manning, J R; Bechtold, W E; Dahl, A R

    1996-10-28

    Species differences in the metabolism of 1,3-butadiene (BD) have been studied in an effort to explain the major differences observed in the responses of mice, the sensitive species, and rats, the resistant species, to the toxicity of inhaled BD. BD is metabolized by the same metabolic pathways in all species studied, but there are major species differences in the quantitative aspects of those pathways. Of the species studied, mice are the most efficient at metabolizing BD to the initial metabolite, the monoepoxide (BDO). Mice either convert most of the BDO to the diepoxide (BDO2), the most mutagenic of the BD metabolites, or form conjugates of the BDO with glutathione (GSH). Rats, on the other hand, are less active at forming BDO, oxidize very little of the BDO to BDO2, and form GSH conjugates with either the BDO or its hydrolysis product, butenediol. Primates convert even less of inhaled BD to BDO and hydrolyze most of the BDO to the butenediol. The extent to which primates form BDO2 is unknown. Because of the association of high levels of the highly mutagenic BDO2 with the sensitive rodent strain, it is important to determine the production of this metabolite in primates, particularly humans.

  18. Fescues ‘leaf’ other grasses behind

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The yield and nutritive value of leaves, stems, and total forage of eight different perennial cool-season grasses were compared at 30-day intervals in spring, summer, and fall at two Wisconsin locations. Total forage production of all grasses was greatest during spring, as expected, and differences ...

  19. Group 13 allergens as environmental and immunological markers for grass pollen allergy: studies by immunogold field emission scanning and transmission electron microscopy.

    PubMed

    Grote, Monika; Swoboda, Ines; Valenta, Rudolf; Reichelt, Rudolf

    2005-04-01

    Polygalacturonases were recently identified as important grass pollen allergens and designated group 13 allergens. The objective of the present study was to investigate the presence of group 13 grass pollen allergens in different grass species, their release and ultrastructural location in dry and hydrated grass pollen. Nitrocellulose-blotted allergen extracts from 12 wild and cultivated grass genera were probed with a rabbit antiserum raised against purified recombinant timothy grass pollen allergen, Phl p 13. The release kinetics of Phl p 13 from timothy grass pollen hydrated for 0.5 min to 3 h were analyzed by immunoblotting. Phl p 13 was localized in dry and hydrated grass pollen grains by immunogold field emission scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Group 13 allergens were detected in all 12 wild and cultivated grass genera representing the major subfamilies of the Poaceae. Ultrastructurally, the allergen was located in the wall and in the cytoplasm of timothy grass pollen grains. In the cytoplasm, Phl p 13 was associated with polysaccharide particles and as yet undescribed stacks of microtubule-like structures. After hydration in rain water, pollen grains expel cytoplasmic particles of respirable size containing Phl p 13, which becomes detectable in aqueous supernatants already after 0.5 min. Group 13 allergens represent one set of marker allergens which specifically occur in pollen of the major grass subfamilies and are rapidly released in association with respirable particles after pollen hydration. They may be considered as environmental markers for grass pollen exposure and group 13-specific IgE antibodies as immunological markers for genuine grass pollen sensitization. Copyright (c) 2005 S. Karger AG, Basel

  20. Water use efficiency of twenty-five co-existing Patagonian species growing under different soil water availability.

    PubMed

    Golluscio, R A; Oesterheld, M

    2007-11-01

    The variation of plant water use efficiency (WUE) with water availability has two interacting components: a plastic response, evident when individuals of the same genotype are compared (e.g. wet versus dry years), and an interspecific response, evident when different species living in habitats with different water availability are compared. We analysed the WUE of 25 Patagonian species that belong to four life forms (grasses, shrubs, annual herbs and perennial herbs) in relation to the climatic conditions of 2 years and the mean historic water availability experienced by each species. To estimate water availability, we calculated the effective soil water potential (EWP) of each species, based on available information about soil water dynamics, phenology and root system structure. To estimate WUE, we used isotopic discrimination of leaf C (Delta(13)C) and mean annual water vapour difference between leaves and atmosphere (Deltae) measured in situ. For the plastic response, for every species and life form, WUE increased from the dry to the wet year. We hypothesize that photosynthesis was less nutrient limited in the wet than in the dry year, facilitating higher net photosynthesis rates per unit of stomatal conductance in the wet year. For the interspecific response, WUE was lower in species native to drier habitats than in species native to wetter habitats. This response was mostly accounted for by a decrease in Deltae with EWP. Annual herbs, which avoid drought in time (they have the earliest growth cycle), and shrubs, which avoid drought in space (they have the deepest roots), showed the highest EWP and WUE. We conclude that the conventional wisdom which states that the highest WUE occurs within a species during the driest years, and among species in the driest habitats, does not always hold true, and that co-existing life forms drastically differ in water availability and water economy.

  1. Concentrations and δ²H values of cuticular n-alkanes vary significantly among plant organs, species and habitats in grasses from an alpine and a temperate European grassland.

    PubMed

    Gamarra, Bruno; Kahmen, Ansgar

    2015-08-01

    n-Alkanes are long-chained hydrocarbons contained in the cuticle of terrestrial plants. Their hydrogen isotope ratios (δ(2)H) have been used as a proxy for environmental and plant ecophysiological processes. Calibration studies designed to resolve the mechanisms that determine the δ(2)H values of n-alkanes have exclusively focused on n-alkanes derived from leaves. It is, however, unclear in which quantities n-alkanes are also produced by other plant organs such as roots or inflorescences, or whether different plant organs produce distinct n-alkane δ(2)H values. To resolve these open questions, we sampled leaves, sheaths, stems, inflorescences and roots from a total of 15 species of European C3 grasses in an alpine and a temperate grassland in Switzerland. Our data show slightly increased n-alkane concentrations and n-alkane δ(2)H values in the alpine compared to the temperate grassland. More importantly, inflorescences had typically much higher n-alkane concentrations than other organs while roots had very low n-alkane concentrations. Most interestingly, the δ(2)H values of the carbon autonomous plant organs leaves, sheaths and stems were in general depleted compared to the overall mean δ(2)H value of a species, while non-carbon autonomous organs such as roots and inflorescences show δ(2)H values that are higher compared to the overall mean δ(2)H value of a species. We attribute organ-specific δ(2)H values to differences in the H-NADPH biosynthetic origin in different plant organs as a function of their carbon relationships. Finally, we employed simple mass balance calculations to show that leaves are in fact the main source of n-alkanes in the sediment. As such, studies assessing the environmental and physiological drivers of n-alkanes that focus on leaves produce relationships that can be employed to interpret the δ(2)H values of n-alkanes derived from sediments. This is despite the significant differences that we found among the δ(2)H values in the

  2. Carbon dynamics in aboveground biomass of co-dominant plant species in a temperate grassland ecosystem: same or different?

    PubMed

    Ostler, Ulrike; Schleip, Inga; Lattanzi, Fernando A; Schnyder, Hans

    2016-04-01

    Understanding the role of individual organisms in whole-ecosystem carbon (C) fluxes is probably the biggest current challenge in C cycle research. Thus, it is unknown whether different plant community members share the same or different residence times in metabolic (τmetab ) and nonmetabolic (i.e. structural) (τnonmetab ) C pools of aboveground biomass and the fraction of fixed C allocated to aboveground nonmetabolic biomass (Anonmetab ). We assessed τmetab , τnonmetab and Anonmetab of co-dominant species from different functional groups (two bunchgrasses, a stoloniferous legume and a rosette dicot) in a temperate grassland community. Continuous, 14-16-d-long (13) C-labeling experiments were performed in September 2006, May 2007 and September 2007. A two-pool compartmental system, with a well-mixed metabolic and a nonmixed nonmetabolic pool, was the simplest biologically meaningful model that fitted the (13) C tracer kinetics in the whole-shoot biomass of all species. In all experimental periods, the species had similar τmetab (5-8 d), whereas τnonmetab ranged from 20 to 58 d (except for one outlier) and Anonmetab from 7 to 45%. Variations in τnonmetab and Anonmetab were not systematically associated with species or experimental periods, but exhibited relationships with leaf life span, particularly in the grasses. Similar pool kinetics of species suggested similar kinetics at the community level.

  3. Checklist of Serengeti Ecosystem Grasses

    PubMed Central

    Ficinski, Paweł; Vorontsova, Maria

    2016-01-01

    Abstract We present the first taxonomic checklist of the Poaceae species of the Serengeti, Tanzania. A review of the literature and herbarium specimens recorded 200 species of grasses, in line with similar studies in other parts of East Africa. The checklist is supported by a total of 939 herbarium collections. Full georeferenced collection data is made available alongside a summary checklist in pdf format. More than a quarter of the species are known from a single collection highlighting the need for further research, especially concerning the rare species and their distribution. PMID:27226761

  4. Checklist of Serengeti Ecosystem Grasses.

    PubMed

    Williams, Emma Victoria; Elia Ntandu, John; Ficinski, Paweł; Vorontsova, Maria

    2016-01-01

    We present the first taxonomic checklist of the Poaceae species of the Serengeti, Tanzania. A review of the literature and herbarium specimens recorded 200 species of grasses, in line with similar studies in other parts of East Africa. The checklist is supported by a total of 939 herbarium collections. Full georeferenced collection data is made available alongside a summary checklist in pdf format. More than a quarter of the species are known from a single collection highlighting the need for further research, especially concerning the rare species and their distribution.

  5. Susceptibility of different yeast species to environmental toxic metals.

    PubMed

    Berdicevsky, I; Duek, L; Merzbach, D; Yannai, S

    1993-01-01

    The purpose of the study reported here was to investigate the relative resistance of yeast species to various metallic and metalloid ions, with a view to gaining more knowledge on this subject, as resistant species may become dominant in habitats contaminated with the relevant metals. Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Candida albicans and Candida tropicalis were grown in media containing different concentrations of mercury (as HgCl(2)), cadmium (as CdCl(2)), lead (as Pb(CH(3)COO)(2)), arsenic (as Na(2)HAsO(4)) and selenium (as Na(2)SeO(3)) for various intervals. Invariably, the two Candida species turned out to be more resistant to all the metals studied than S. cerevisiae. The metal showing the highest toxicity for these species was mercury, with cadmium being the second, lead, the third and arsenic and selenium being the least toxic elements. Strains showing resistance to mercury were isolated, even in the case of S. cerevisiae.

  6. Unrecognized coral species diversity masks differences in functional ecology

    PubMed Central

    Boulay, Jennifer N.; Hellberg, Michael E.; Cortés, Jorge; Baums, Iliana B.

    2014-01-01

    Porites corals are foundation species on Pacific reefs but a confused taxonomy hinders understanding of their ecosystem function and responses to climate change. Here, we show that what has been considered a single species in the eastern tropical Pacific, Porites lobata, includes a morphologically similar yet ecologically distinct species, Porites evermanni. While P. lobata reproduces mainly sexually, P. evermanni dominates in areas where triggerfish prey on bioeroding mussels living within the coral skeleton, thereby generating asexual coral fragments. These fragments proliferate in marginal habitat not colonized by P. lobata. The two Porites species also show a differential bleaching response despite hosting the same dominant symbiont subclade. Thus, hidden diversity within these reef-builders has until now obscured differences in trophic interactions, reproductive dynamics and bleaching susceptibility, indicative of differential responses when confronted with future climate change. PMID:24335977

  7. Unrecognized coral species diversity masks differences in functional ecology.

    PubMed

    Boulay, Jennifer N; Hellberg, Michael E; Cortés, Jorge; Baums, Iliana B

    2014-02-07

    Porites corals are foundation species on Pacific reefs but a confused taxonomy hinders understanding of their ecosystem function and responses to climate change. Here, we show that what has been considered a single species in the eastern tropical Pacific, Porites lobata, includes a morphologically similar yet ecologically distinct species, Porites evermanni. While P. lobata reproduces mainly sexually, P. evermanni dominates in areas where triggerfish prey on bioeroding mussels living within the coral skeleton, thereby generating asexual coral fragments. These fragments proliferate in marginal habitat not colonized by P. lobata. The two Porites species also show a differential bleaching response despite hosting the same dominant symbiont subclade. Thus, hidden diversity within these reef-builders has until now obscured differences in trophic interactions, reproductive dynamics and bleaching susceptibility, indicative of differential responses when confronted with future climate change.

  8. Responses of legumes and grasses to non-, moderate, and dense shade in Missouri, USA. I. Forage yield and its species-level plasticity

    Treesearch

    Kejia Pang; J.W. Van Sambeek; Nadia E. Navarrete-Tindall; Chung-Ho Lin; Shibu Jose; H. E. Garrett

    2017-01-01

    Annual screenings of forage grasses and legumes for shade tolerance were conducted from 1996 to 2001 in the outdoor Shade Tolerance Screening Laboratory at the Horticulture and Agroforestry Research Center, University of Missouri. Forty-three forages were grown under non-shade (100% of full sunlight), moderate shade (45%), and dense shade (20%) without competition for...

  9. Response of dominant grass and shrub species to water manipulation: an ecophysiological basis for shrub invasion in a Chihuahuan Desert grassland

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    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 ...

  10. Responses of legumes and grasses to non-, moderate, and dense shade in Missouri, USA. II. Forage quality and its species-level plasticity

    Treesearch

    Kejia Pang; J.W. Van Sambeek; Nadia E. Navarrete-Tindall; Chung-Ho Lin; Shibu Jose; H. E. Garrett

    2017-01-01

    From a series of shade tolerance screening trials conducted in an outdoor Shade Tolerance Screening Laboratory, 22 forages (16 grasses and 6 legumes) were selected for quality evaluation. The forages were grown under non-shade (100% of full sun, the control), moderate shade (45%), and dense shade (20%) with adequate water and nutrients and free of competition from...

  11. Fusarium dactylidis sp. nov., a novel nivalenol toxin-producing species sister to F. pseudograminearum isolated from orchard grass (Dactylis glomerata) in Oregon and New Zealand

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    The B trichothecene toxin-producing clade (B clade) of Fusarium includes the etiological agents of Fusarium head blight, crown rot of wheat and barley and stem and ear rot of maize. B clade isolates also have been recovered from several wild and cultivated grasses, including Dactylis glomerata (orch...

  12. Different Responses to Reward Comparisons by Three Primate Species

    PubMed Central

    Freeman, Hani D.; Sullivan, Jennifer; Hopper, Lydia M.; Talbot, Catherine F.; Holmes, Andrea N.; Schultz-Darken, Nancy; Williams, Lawrence E.; Brosnan, Sarah F.

    2013-01-01

    Background Recently, much attention has been paid to the role of cooperative breeding in the evolution of behavior. In many measures, cooperative breeders are more prosocial than non-cooperatively breeding species, including being more likely to actively share food. This is hypothesized to be due to selective pressures specific to the interdependency characteristic of cooperatively breeding species. Given the high costs of finding a new mate, it has been proposed that cooperative breeders, unlike primates that cooperate in other contexts, should not respond negatively to unequal outcomes between themselves and their partner. However, in this context such pressures may extend beyond cooperative breeders to other species with pair-bonding and bi-parental care. Methods Here we test the response of two New World primate species with different parental strategies to unequal outcomes in both individual and social contrast conditions. One species tested was a cooperative breeder (Callithrix spp.) and the second practiced bi-parental care (Aotus spp.). Additionally, to verify our procedure, we tested a third confamilial species that shows no such interdependence but does respond to individual (but not social) contrast (Saimiri spp.). We tested all three genera using an established inequity paradigm in which individuals in a pair took turns to gain rewards that sometimes differed from those of their partners. Conclusions None of the three species tested responded negatively to inequitable outcomes in this experimental context. Importantly, the Saimiri spp responded to individual contrast, as in earlier studies, validating our procedure. When these data are considered in relation to previous studies investigating responses to inequity in primates, they indicate that one aspect of cooperative breeding, pair-bonding or bi-parental care, may influence the evolution of these behaviors. These results emphasize the need to study a variety of species to gain insight in to how

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

    PubMed

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

    2013-08-01

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

  14. Germination sensitivities to water potential among co-existing C3 and C4 grasses of cool semi-arid prairie grasslands.

    PubMed

    Mollard, F P O; Naeth, M A

    2015-03-01

    An untested theory states that C4 grass seeds could germinate under lower water potentials (Ψ) than C3 grass seeds. We used hydrotime modelling to study seed water relations of C4 and C3 Canadian prairie grasses to address Ψ divergent sensitivities and germination strategies along a risk-spreading continuum of responses to limited water. C4 grasses were Bouteloua gracilis, Calamovilfa longifolia and Schizachyrium scoparium; C3 grasses were Bromus carinatus, Elymus trachycaulus, Festuca hallii and Koeleria macrantha. Hydrotime parameters were obtained after incubation of non-dormant seeds under different Ψ PEG 6000 solutions. A t-test between C3 and C4 grasses did not find statistical differences in population mean base Ψ (Ψb (50)). We found idiosyncratic responses of C4 grasses along the risk-spreading continuum. B. gracilis showed a risk-taker strategy of a species able to quickly germinate in a dry soil due to its low Ψb (50) and hydrotime (θH ). The high Ψb (50) of S. scoparium indicates it follows the risk-averse strategy so it can only germinate in wet soils. C. longifolia showed an intermediate strategy: the lowest Ψb (50) yet the highest θH . K. macrantha, a C3 grass which thrives in dry habitats, had the highest Ψb (50), suggesting a risk-averse strategy for a C3 species. Other C3 species showed intermediate germination patterns in response to Ψ relative to C4 species. Our results indicate that grasses display germination sensitivities to Ψ across the risk-spreading continuum of responses. Thus seed water relations may be poor predictors to explain differential recruitment and distribution of C3 and C4 grasses in the Canadian prairies.

  15. Species selection in secondary wood products: perspectives from different consumers

    Treesearch

    Scott A. Bowe; Matthew S. Bumgardner; Matthew S. Bumgardner

    2004-01-01

    This study investigated adult consumer perceptions of several wood species to determine if word-based and appearance-based evaluations differed. The research replicated a 2001 study by the authors, which used undergraduate college students as a proxy for older and more experienced adult furniture consumers. The literature is somewhat inconclusive concerning the extent...

  16. Ecological rehabilitation and phytoremediation with four grasses in oil shale mined land.

    PubMed

    Xia, H P

    2004-01-01

    Vetiver grass (Vetiveria zizanioides), bahia grass (Paspalum notatum), St. Augustine grass (Stenotaphrum secundatum), and bana grass (Pennisetum glaucumxP. purpureum) were selected to rehabilitate the degraded ecosystem of an oil shale mined land of Maoming Petro-Chemical Company located in Southwest of Guangdong Province, China. Among them, vetiver had the highest survival rate, up to 99%, followed by bahia and St. Augustine, 96% and 91%, respectively, whereas bana had the lowest survival rate of 62%. The coverage and biomass of vetiver were also the highest after 6-month planting. Fertilizer application significantly increased biomass and tiller number of the four grasses, of which St. Augustine was promoted most, up to 70% for biomass, while vetiver was promoted least, only 27% for biomass. Two heavy metals, lead (Pb) and cadmium (Cd) tested in this trial had different concentrations in the oil shale residue, and also had different contents and distributions in the four grass species. Concentrations of Pb and Cd in the four grasses presented a disparity of only 1.6-3.8 times, but their uptake amounts to the two metals were apart up to 27.5-35.5 times, which was chiefly due to the significantly different biomasses among them. Fertilizer application could abate the ability of the four species to accumulate heavy metals, namely concentration of heavy metals in plants decreased as fertilizer was applied. The total amount of metals accumulated by each plant under the condition of fertilization did not decrease due to an increase of biomass. In summary, vetiver may be the best species used for vegetation rehabilitation in oil shale disposal piles.

  17. Soil ciliate species richness and abundance associated with the rhizosphere of different subtropical plant species.

    PubMed

    Acosta-Mercado, Dimaris; Lynn, Denis H

    2004-01-01

    Soil protozoa, and ciliates in particular, represent a microbial group abundant in the rhizosphere with an influential role on nutrient cycling. Under laboratory conditions, ciliates regulate the size and the composition of bacterial communities, and appear to stimulate ammonification and nitrification. In spite of their important ecological role, our understanding about the factors that control their diversity and abundance in natural forest ecosystems is still rudimentary. Plant species-specific interactions have been demonstrated between plants and soil bacteria and mycorrhizal fungi, due in part to the release of phytohormones and C- and N-rich exudates. We tested the hypothesis that the rhizosphere environments of different plant species also influence the species richness and abundance of soil ciliates. Plant effect, soil pH, moisture content, microbial biomass C, and inorganic nitrogen were measured among five plant species to determine the best predictor variables for soil ciliate species richness and total abundance in a subtropical moist forest in Puerto Rico. Based on an analysis of variance, we rejected the hypothesis that there was a plant species-specific effect on soil ciliates, unlike other microbial groups mentioned above. Using multiple regression analysis, we demonstrated that the flush of total inorganic nitrogen was the best predictor variable for both species richness and abundance of ciliates.

  18. SQ grass sublingual allergy immunotherapy tablet for disease-modifying treatment of grass pollen allergic rhinoconjunctivitis.

    PubMed

    Dahl, Ronald; Roberts, Graham; de Blic, Jacques; Canonica, G Walter; Kleine-Tebbe, Jörg; Nolte, Hendrik; Lawton, Simon; Nelson, Harold S

    2016-01-01

    Allergy immunotherapy is a treatment option for allergic rhinoconjunctivitis (ARC). It is unique compared with pharmacotherapy in that it modifies the immunologic pathways that elicit an allergic response. The SQ Timothy grass sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) tablet is approved in North America and throughout Europe for the treatment of adults and children (≥5 years old) with grass pollen-induced ARC. The clinical evidence for the use of SQ grass SLIT-tablet as a disease-modifying treatment for grass pollen ARC is discussed in this review. The review included the suitability of SQ grass SLIT-tablet for patients with clinically relevant symptoms to multiple Pooideae grass species, single-season efficacy, safety, adherence, coseasonal initiation, and cost-effectiveness. The data from the long-term SQ grass SLIT-tablet clinical trial that evaluated a clinical effect 2 years after a continuous 3-year treatment period were presented in the context of regulatory criteria that define a clinically meaningful effect. This trial demonstrated that the clinical effect of the SQ grass SLIT-tablet is maintained, which is also supported by the immunologic findings. Therefore, the SQ grass SLIT-tablet has an indication as a disease-modifying therapy in Europe, and a sustained effect is recognized in the United States.

  19. Brain organization of gorillas reflects species differences in ecology

    PubMed Central

    Barks, Sarah K.; Calhoun, Michael E.; Hopkins, William D.; Cranfield, Michael R.; Mudakikwa, Antoine; Stoinski, Tara S.; Patterson, Francine G.; Erwin, Joseph M.; Hecht, Erin E.; Hof, Patrick R.; Sherwood, Chet C.

    2014-01-01

    Gorillas include separate eastern (Gorilla beringei) and western (Gorilla gorilla) African species that diverged from each other approximately 2 million years ago. Although anatomical, genetic, behavioral, and socioecological differences have been noted among gorilla populations, little is known about variation in their brain structure. This study examines neuroanatomical variation between gorilla species using structural neuroimaging. Postmortem magnetic resonance images were obtained of brains from 18 captive western lowland gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla), 15 wild mountain gorillas (Gorilla beringei beringei), and 3 Grauer's gorillas (Gorilla beringei graueri) (both wild and captive). Stereologic methods were used to measure volumes of brain structures, including left and right frontal lobe gray and white matter, temporal lobe gray and white matter, parietal and occipital lobes gray and white matter, insular gray matter, hippocampus, striatum, thalamus, each hemisphere and the vermis of the cerebellum, and the external and extreme capsules together with the claustrum. Among the species differences, the volumes of the hippocampus and cerebellum were significantly larger in G. gorilla than G. beringei. These anatomical differences may relate to divergent ecological adaptations of the two species. Specifically, G. gorilla engage in more arboreal locomotion and thus may rely more on cerebellar circuits. In addition, they tend to eat more fruit and have larger home ranges and consequently might depend more on spatial mapping functions of the hippocampus. PMID:25360547

  20. Species differences in hepatic biotransformation of the anthelmintic drug flubendazole.

    PubMed

    Maté, M L; Geary, T; Mackenzie, C; Lanusse, C; Virkel, G

    2017-10-01

    Flubendazole (FLBZ) is a broad-spectrum benzimidazole anthelmintic used in pigs, poultry, and humans. It has been proposed as a candidate for development for use in elimination programmes for lymphatic filariasis and onchocerciasis in humans. Moreover, FLBZ has shown promise in cancer chemotherapy, particularly for neuroblastoma. This work investigated the hepatic carbonyl-reducing pathway of FLBZ in different species, including humans. Microsomal and cytosolic fractions were obtained from sheep, cattle, pig, hen, rat, and human liver. Both subcellular fractions of each species converted FLBZ into a reduced metabolite (red-FLBZ). The rate of microsomal red-FLBZ production was highest in sheep (1.92 ± 0.13 nmol/min.mg) and lowest in pigs (0.04 ± 0.02 nmol/min.mg); cytosolic red-FLBZ production ranged from 0.02 ± 0.01 (pig) to 1.86 ± 0.61 nmol/min.mg (sheep). Only subcellular fractions from sheep liver oxidized red-FLBZ to FLBZ in a NADP(+) -dependent oxidative reaction. Liver microsomes from both pigs and humans transformed FLBZ to red-FLBZ and a hydrolyzed metabolite. Very significant differences in the pattern of FLBZ metabolism were observed among the tested species and humans. These results reinforce the need for caution in extrapolating data on metabolism, efficacy, and safety of drugs derived from studies performed in different species. © 2017 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  1. Four pathogenic Candida species differ in salt tolerance.

    PubMed

    Krauke, Yannick; Sychrova, Hana

    2010-10-01

    The virulence of Candida species depends on many environmental conditions, including extracellular pH and concentration of alkali metal cations. Tests of the tolerance/sensitivity of four pathogenic Candida species (C. albicans, C. dubliniensis, C. glabrata, and C. parapsilosis) to alkali metal cations under various growth conditions revealed significant differences among these species. Though all of them can be classified as rather osmotolerant yeast species, they exhibit different levels of tolerance to different salts. C. parapsilosis and C. albicans are the most salt-tolerant in general; C. dubliniensis is the least tolerant on rich YPD media and C. glabrata on acidic (pH 3.5) minimal YNB medium. C. dubliniensis is relatively salt-sensitive in spite of its ability to maintain as high intracellular K(+)/Na(+) ratio as its highly salt-tolerant relative C. albicans. On the other hand, C. parapsilosis can grow in the presence of very high external NaCl concentrations in spite of its high intracellular Na(+) concentrations (and thus lower K(+)/Na(+) ratio) and thus resembles salt-tolerant (halophilic) Debaryomyces hansenii.

  2. Brain organization of gorillas reflects species differences in ecology.

    PubMed

    Barks, Sarah K; Calhoun, Michael E; Hopkins, William D; Cranfield, Michael R; Mudakikwa, Antoine; Stoinski, Tara S; Patterson, Francine G; Erwin, Joseph M; Hecht, Erin E; Hof, Patrick R; Sherwood, Chet C

    2015-02-01

    Gorillas include separate eastern (Gorilla beringei) and western (Gorilla gorilla) African species that diverged from each other approximately 2 million years ago. Although anatomical, genetic, behavioral, and socioecological differences have been noted among gorilla populations, little is known about variation in their brain structure. This study examines neuroanatomical variation between gorilla species using structural neuroimaging. Postmortem magnetic resonance images were obtained of brains from 18 captive western lowland gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla), 15 wild mountain gorillas (Gorilla beringei beringei), and 3 Grauer's gorillas (Gorilla beringei graueri) (both wild and captive). Stereologic methods were used to measure volumes of brain structures, including left and right frontal lobe gray and white matter, temporal lobe gray and white matter, parietal and occipital lobes gray and white matter, insular gray matter, hippocampus, striatum, thalamus, each hemisphere and the vermis of the cerebellum, and the external and extreme capsules together with the claustrum. Among the species differences, the volumes of the hippocampus and cerebellum were significantly larger in G. gorilla than G. beringei. These anatomical differences may relate to divergent ecological adaptations of the two species. Specifically, G. gorilla engages in more arboreal locomotion and thus may rely more on cerebellar circuits. In addition, they tend to eat more fruit and have larger home ranges and consequently might depend more on spatial mapping functions of the hippocampus.

  3. Sonoran Desert ecosystem transformation by a C4 grass without the grass/fire cycle

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Olsson, Aaryn D.; Betancourt, Julio; McClaran, Mitchel P.; Marsh, Stuart E.

    2012-01-01

    Aim Biological invasions facilitate ecosystem transformation by altering the structure and function, diversity, dominance and disturbance regimes. A classic case is the grass–fire cycle in which grass invasion increases the frequency, scale and/or intensity of wildfires and promotes the continued invasion of invasive grasses. Despite wide acceptance of the grass–fire cycle, questions linger about the relative roles that interspecific plant competition and fire play in ecosystem transformations. Location Sonoran Desert Arizona Upland of the Santa Catalina Mountains, Arizona, USA. Methods We measured species cover, density and saguaro (Carnegiea gigantea) size structure along gradients of Pennisetum ciliare invasion at 10 unburned/ungrazed P. ciliare patches. Regression models quantified differences in diversity, cover and density with respect to P. ciliare cover, and residence time and a Fisher's exact test detected demographic changes in saguaro populations. Because P. ciliare may have initially invaded locations that were both more invasible and less diverse, we ran analyses with and without the plots in which initial infestations were located. Results Richness and diversity decreased with P. ciliare cover as did cover and density of most dominant species. Richness and diversity declined with increasing time since invasion, suggesting an ongoing transformation. The proportion of old-to-young Carnegiea gigantea was significantly lower in plots with dominant P. ciliare cover. Main conclusions Rich desert scrub (15–25 species per plot) was transformed into depauperate grassland (2–5 species per plot) within 20 years following P. ciliare invasion without changes to the fire regime. While the onset of a grass–fire cycle may drive ecosystem change in the later stages and larger scales of grass invasions of arid lands, competition by P. ciliare can drive small-scale transformations earlier in the invasion. Linking competition-induced transformation rates with

  4. Effect of different forage species on the nitrogen uptake in Hulunbeir

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xu, Li-Jun; Xu, Xing-Liang; Tang, Xue-Juan; Yang, Gui-Xia; Zhang, Zhao; Xin, Xiao-Ping

    2017-02-01

    Knowledge of determining factors for nitrogen uptake preferences and how they are modified in changing environments are critical to understand ecosystem nitrogen cycling and to predict plant responses to future environmental changes. However, it remains unclear in this aspect for the main managed grassland (Medicago sativa, Bromus inermis, Leymus chinensis) and crop (Brassica campestris) under field condition in Hulunbeir area of Inner Mongolia of China. Two 15N tracer experiments utilizing a unique differential labelled nitrogen source were employed in both managed grassland (M. sativa, B. inermis and L. chinensis) and crop (B. campestris) in Hulunbeir area of Inner Mongolia of China. Tracing both labels in the above-and below ground plant biomass, soil NH4 + -N or NO3 ‑ -N and NH4 + -N or NO3 - -N uptake by plants. There were differences between soil NO3 ‑-N concentration and NH4+-N concentration, and NO3 ‑-N concentration was higher than NH4 +-N concentration. NO3 ‑-N concentration was led by different grass species. The NH4 +-N concentration in August were higher than in July on the whole, the highest value for B. campestris and the lowest for B. inermis. The plant N concentration in B. inermis, L. chinensis and B. campestris showed decreasing trend, its mean value decreased by 20.1, 47.9 and 26.7%, respectively, and M. sativa increased by 13.7%. Among the four species, the individuals exhibited a preference for 15NO3 -, indicated by higher 15N signatures in 15NO3-treatment than in 15NH4 + treatment.

  5. Variations in Km(CO2) of Ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate Carboxylase among Grasses

    PubMed Central

    Yeoh, Hock-Hin; Badger, Murray R.; Watson, Leslie

    1980-01-01

    A survey of the Km(CO2) values of ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylase from 60 grass species shows that enzyme from C3 grasses consistently exhibits lower Km(CO2) than does that from C4 grasses. Systematically ordered variation in Km(CO2) of ribulose-1,5-bisphosphate carboxylases from C3 and C4 grasses is also apparent and, among C4 grasses, this shows some correlation with C4 types. PMID:16661586

  6. Similarities and differences in rubber biochemistry among plant species.

    PubMed

    Cornish, K

    2001-08-01

    This report reviews aspects of the biochemical regulation of rubber yield and rubber quality in three contrasting rubber-producing species, Hevea brasiliensis, Parthenium argentatum and Ficus elastica. Although many similarities are revealed, considerable differences also exist in enzymatic mechanisms regulating biosynthetic rate and the molecular weight of the rubber biopolymers produced. In all three species, rubber molecule initiation, biosynthetic rate and molecular weight, in vitro, are dependent upon substrate concentration and the ratio of isopentenyl pyrophosphate (IPP, the elongation substrate, or monomer) and farnesyl pyrophosphate (FPP, an initiator), but these parameters are affected by intrinsic properties of the rubber transferases as well. All three rubber transferases are capable of producing a wide range of rubber molecular weight, depending upon substrate concentration, clearly demonstrating that the transferases are not the prime determinants of product size in vivo. However, despite these commonalities, considerable differences exist between the species with respect to cosubstrate effects, binding constants, effective concentration ranges, and the role of negative cooperativity in vitro. The P. argentatum rubber transferase appears to exert more control over the molecular weight it produces than the other two species and may, therefore, provide the best prospect for the source of genes for transformation of annual crop species. The kinetic data, from the three contrasting rubber-producing species, also were used to develop a model of the rubber transferase active site in which, in addition to separate IPP and allylic-PP binding sites, there exists a hydrophobic region that interacts with the linear portion of allylic-PP initiator proximal to the pyrophosphate. Substrate affinity increases until the active site is traversed and the rubber interior of the rubber particle is reached. The kinetic data suggest that the hydrophobic region in H

  7. Method and device for identifying different species of honeybees

    SciTech Connect

    Kerr, H.T.; Buchanan, M.E.; Valentine, K.H.

    1989-10-24

    A method and device have been provided for distinguishing Africanized honeybees from European honeybees. The method is based on the discovery of a distinct difference in the acoustical signatures of these two species of honeybees in flight. The European honeybee signature has a fundamental power peak in the 210 to 240 Hz range while the Africanized honeybee signature has a fundamental power peak in the 260 to 290 Hz range. The acoustic signal produced by honeybees is analyzed by means of a detecting device to quickly determine the honeybee species through the detection of the presence of frequencies in one of these distinct ranges. The device includes a microphone for acoustical signal detection which feeds the detected signal into a frequency analyzer which is designed to detect the presence of either of the known fundamental wingbeat frequencies unique to the acoustical signatures of these species as an indication of the identity of the species and indicate the species identity on a readout device. 8 figs.

  8. Plasticity of nitrogen allocation in the leaves of the invasive wetland grass, Phalaris arundinacea and co-occurring Carex species determines the photosynthetic sensitivity to nitrogen availability.

    PubMed

    Holaday, A Scott; Schwilk, Dylan W; Waring, Elizabeth F; Guvvala, Hasitha; Griffin, Chelsea M; Lewis, O Milo

    2015-04-01

    Phalaris arundinacea displaces the slower-growing, native sedge, Carex stricta, where nitrogen availability is high. Our aim was to address whether morphological and physiological traits associated with carbon gain for P. arundinacea and C. stricta responded to nitrogen supply differently and if the species exhibited different degrees of plasticity in these traits. The plants were grown in gravel and provided modified Hoagland's solution containing four nitrogen concentrations from 0.15 to 15 mM for 6 to 7 weeks. Supplied nitrogen affected the leaf nitrogen content to the same degree for both species. Increasing supplied nitrogen strongly increased CO2 assimilation (A), photosynthetic nitrogen use efficiency (PNUE), and respiration for P. arundinacea but had only a small effect on these parameters for C. stricta. Relative to growth at 15 mM nitrogen, growth at 0.15 mM for young leaves decreased carboxylation capacity and efficiency and the capacity for electron transport for P. arundinacea and a larger, stouter Carex species, Carex lacustris, by 53 to 70% but only 20 to 24% for C. stricta. Leaf nitrogen decreased approximately 50% for all species, but vacuolar nitrate did not decrease for P. arundinacea and C. stricta, suggesting that it does not serve as a nitrogen reserve for use during nitrogen deprivation in these species. After 4 months of nitrogen deprivation, P. arundinacea doubled A in 12 days after being supplied 15 mM nitrogen, whereas A for C. stricta increased only 22%. We propose that one factor linking P. arundinacea abundance to nitrogen availability involves this species' plastic response of carbon gain to nitrogen supply. C. stricta appears to be adapted to tolerate low nitrogen availability but cannot respond as rapidly and extensively as P. arundinacea when nitrogen supply is high.

  9. Proteomic analysis of photosystem I components from different plant species.

    PubMed

    Zolla, Lello; Rinalducci, Sara; Timperio, Anna Maria

    2007-06-01

    In this study, the photosystem I (PSI) highly hydrophobic proteins present within stroma lamellae of the thylakoid membrane were separated by RP-HPLC and identified either by in-solution trypsin digestion peptide fragment fingerprinting or by the close correspondence between the intact mass measurements (IMMs) and those expected from the DNA sequence. Protein identification performed by MS/MS was as reliable as IMMs. Thus, IMM is an easy and valid method for identifying proteins that have no PTMs. This paper reports the M(r) for all PSI proteins in ten different species, including those whose genes have not yet been cloned. Lhca5 was revealed unequivocally in four species, corroborating that it is indeed a protein belonging to the light-harvesting antenna of PSI. In all species examined, the product of the Lhca6 gene has never been revealed. Concerning core proteins, Psa-O has been revealed in three species; isoforms of Psa-D and Psa-E have been found in both monocots and dicots. Small proteins like Psa-I and Psa-J are well separated and identified. RP-HPLC produces reliable fingerprints and reveals that the relative amounts of PSI proteins appear to be markedly different.

  10. Ant species confer different partner benefits on two neotropical myrmecophytes.

    PubMed

    Frederickson, Megan E

    2005-04-01

    The dynamics of mutualistic interactions involving more than a single pair of species depend on the relative costs and benefits of interaction among alternative partners. The neotropical myrmecophytes Cordia nodosa and Duroia hirsuta associate with several species of obligately symbiotic ants. I compared the ant partners of Cordia and Duroia with respect to two benefits known to be important in ant-myrmecophyte interactions: protection against herbivores provided by ants, and protection against encroaching vegetation provided by ants. Azteca spp., Myrmelachista schumanni, and Allomerus octoarticulatus demerarae ants all provide the leaves of Cordia and Duroia some protection against herbivores. However, Azteca and Allomerus provide more protection than does Myrmelachista to the leaves of their host plants. Although Allomerus protects the leaves of its hosts, plants occupied by Allomerus suffer more attacks by herbivores to their stems than do plants occupied by other ants. Relative to Azteca or Allomerus, Myrmelachista ants provide better protection against encroaching vegetation, increasing canopy openness over their host plants. These differences in benefits among the ant partners of Cordia and Duroia are reflected in the effect of each ant species on host plant size, growth rate, and reproduction. The results of this study show how mutualistic ant partners can differ with respect to both the magnitude and type of benefits they provide to the same species of myrmecophytic host.

  11. Restoration of native plant communities in a Hawaiian dry lowland ecosystem dominated by the invasive grass Megathyrsus maximus

    Treesearch

    Selita A. Ammondt; Creighton M. Litton; Lisa M. Ellsworth; James K. Leary

    2012-01-01

    How does a highly degraded Hawaiian tropical dry lowland ecosystem dominated by the non-native invasive Megathyrsus maximus (guinea grass) respond to different restoration treatments (three native species outplanting treatments; four native broadcast seed treatments)? What effect do restoration treatments have on invasive and native species...

  12. The role of wild grasses in the management of lepidopterous stem-borers on maize in the humid tropics of western Africa.

    PubMed

    Ndemah, R; Gounou, S; Schulthess, F

    2002-12-01

    Sites in the humid forest of Cameroon and the derived savanna of Benin were selected to evaluate the effect of planting border rows of wild host plants on lepidopterous stem-borer infestations and on maize yield. Grass species were chosen that in surveys and greenhouse trials were highly attractive to ovipositing female moths but with offspring mortality of close to 100%, thus acting as trap plants. In Cameroon, elephant grass Pennisetum purpureum Moench significantly lowered infestations of Busseola fusca (Fuller), Sesamia calamistis Hampson and Eldana saccharina Walker and increased yields of maize though the differences were not significant during all three cropping seasons. In 1998 in Benin, the only grass tested, Pennisetum polystachion L., significantly increased parasitism of mainly S. calamistis eggs by Telenomus spp. and larvae by Cotesia sesamiae Cameron and reduced numbers of the cob-borer Mussidia nigrivenella Ragonot. In 1999, three grass species; P. polystachion, Sorghum arundinaceum (Desv.) Stapf and Panicum maximum Jacq. were tested. Panicum maximum was the most efficient species for suppressing S. calamistis and M. nigrivenella infestations and enhancing egg and larval parasitism. In the Benin trials, with the exception of M. nigrivenella damage to cobs, the grass species tested had no beneficial effect on yield because pest densities were too low and also rodent damage to maize was enhanced with grasses in the vicinity of the crop. By contrast, stand losses due to Fusarium verticillioides Sacc. (Nirenberg), were significantly reduced by border rows of grasses.

  13. Intra-annual rainfall regime shifts competitive interactions between coastal sage scrub and invasive grasses.

    PubMed

    Goldstein, Leah J; Suding, Katharine N

    2014-02-01

    Changes in rainfall distribution, generally predicted by many climate models, can affect resource dynamics and ecosystem function. While little studied, intra-annual rainfall distribution may have particularly strong effects on competitive interactions. Here, we test whether increased rainfall event size and decreased frequency within a growing season can influence competitive dynamics related to the invasion of exotic annual grasses in California coastal sage scrub (CSS). We hypothesized that larger rainfall events and decreased frequency will increase the competitive ability of native CSS species: a deeper root system will permit greater water use during dry periods between pulses and enhance their resource depletion effect on more shallow-rooted grasses. We planted grass and CSS seedlings in an additive competition design under three rainfall treatments: frequent small events, infrequent large events, and infrequent small events. The first two treatments had the same total rainfall but different frequency, while the second and third treatments had the same frequency but different total rainfall. Rainfall treatment altered the competitive interactions between CSS and grasses. In the first year, the competitive effect of annual grasses on shrub seedlings was strongest under the frequent small rainfall regime where they reduced deep soil moisture and light. In year two, the established shrubs began to exert strong competitive effects on grasses, and these effects were strongest under the infrequent small rainfall regime (low total rain) where they reduced shallow soil moisture and decreased grass stomatal conductance. Results suggest that reductions in both rainfall frequency and total rainfall may be important to competitive interactions, and can alter plant community composition and invasion when species have different rooting depths and different responses to soil moisture.

  14. Can species-specific differences in foliar chemistry influence leaf litter decomposition in grassland species?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sanaullah, M.; Chabbi, A.; Rumpel, C.

    2009-04-01

    The influence of litter quality on its rate of decomposition is a crucial aspect of C cycle. In this study we concentrated on grassland ecosystems where leaf litter is one of the major sources of C input. To quantify the contribution of initial leaf chemistry within different plant species, the decomposition of chemically different leaf litter of three grassland species (Lolium perenne, Festuca arundinacea and Dactylis glomerata) was monitored, using the litter bag technique. Litter of different maturity stages i.e. green (fresh leaves) and brown litter (brown leaves were still attached to the plant), were incubated on bare soil surface. Samples were taken at different time intervals (0, 2, 4, 8, 20 and 44 weeks) and were analyzed for mass loss, organic C and N contents and stable isotopic signatures (C and N). Changes in litter chemistry were addressed by determining lignin-derived phenols after CuO oxidation and non-cellulosic polysaccharides after acid hydrolysis followed by gas chromatography. Green litter was chemically different from brown litter due to higher initial N and lower lignin contents. While in grassland species, both L. perenne and D. glomerata were similar in their initial chemical composition compared with F. arundinacea. Green litter showed higher rate of degradation. In green litter, Percent lignin remaining of initial (% OI) followed the similar decomposition pattern as of C remaining indicating lignin as controlling factor in decomposition. Constant Acid-to-Aldehyde ratios of lignin-derived phenols (vanillyl and syringyl) did not suggest any transformation in lignin structures. In green litter, increase in non-cellulosic polysaccharides ratios (C6/C5 and deoxy/C5) proposed microbial-derived sugars, while there was no significant increase in these ratios in brown litter. In conclusion, due to the differences in initial chemical composition (initial N and lignin contents), green litter decomposition was higher than brown litter in all

  15. Improving our understanding of environmental controls on the distribution of C3 and C4 grasses.

    PubMed

    Pau, Stephanie; Edwards, Erika J; Still, Christopher J

    2013-01-01

    A number of studies have demonstrated the ecological sorting of C3 and C4 grasses along temperature and moisture gradients. However, previous studies of C3 and C4 grass biogeography have often inadvertently compared species in different and relatively unrelated lineages, which are associated with different environmental settings and distinct adaptive traits. Such confounded comparisons of C3 and C4 grasses may bias our understanding of ecological sorting imposed strictly by photosynthetic pathway. Here, we used MaxEnt species distribution modeling in combination with satellite data to understand the functional diversity of C3 and C4 grasses by comparing both large clades and closely related sister taxa. Similar to previous work, we found that C4 grasses showed a preference for regions with higher temperatures and lower precipitation compared with grasses using the C3 pathway. However, air temperature differences were smaller (2 °C vs. 4 °C) and precipitation and % tree cover differences were larger (1783 mm vs. 755 mm, 21.3% vs. 7.7%, respectively) when comparing C3 and C4 grasses within the same clade vs. comparing all C4 and all C3 grasses (i.e., ignoring phylogenetic structure). These results were due to important differences in the environmental preferences of C3 BEP and PACMAD clades (the two main grass clades). Winter precipitation was found to be more important for understanding the distribution and environmental niche of C3 PACMADs in comparison with both C3 BEPs and C4 taxa, for which temperature was much more important. Results comparing closely related C3 -C4 sister taxa supported the patterns derived from our modeling of the larger clade groupings. Our findings, which are novel in comparing the distribution and niches of clades, demonstrate that the evolutionary history of taxa is important for understanding the functional diversity of C3 and C4 grasses, and should have implications for how grasslands will respond to global change.

  16. Comparison of mammalian mitochondrial ribosomal ribonucleic acid from different species.

    PubMed

    Mitra, R S; Bartoov, B; Monahan, J; Freeman, K B

    1972-08-01

    Mitochondrial ribosomal RNA species from mouse L cells, rat liver, rat hepatoma, hamster BHK-21 cells and human KB cells were examined by electrophoresis on polyacrylamide-agarose gels and sedimentation in sucrose density gradients. The S(E) (electrophoretic mobility) and S values of mitochondrial rRNA of all species were highly dependent on temperature and ionic strength of the medium; the S(E) values increased and the S values decreased with an increase in temperature at a low ionic strength. At an ionic strength of 0.3 at 23-25 degrees C or an ionic strength of 0.01 at 3-4 degrees C the S and S(E) values were almost the same being about 16.2-18.0 and 12.3-13.6 for human and mouse mitochondrial rRNA. The molecular weights under these conditions were calculated to be 3.8x10(5)-4.3x10(5) and 5.9x10(5)-6.8x10(5), depending on the technique used. At 25 degrees C in buffers of low ionic strength mouse mitochondrial rRNA species had a lower electrophoretic mobility than those of human and hamster. Under these conditions the smaller mitochondrial rRNA species of hamster had a lower electrophoretic mobility than that of human but the larger component had an identical mobility. Mouse and rat mitochondrial rRNA species had identical electrophoretic mobilities. Complex differences between human and mouse mitochondrial rRNA species were observed on sedimentation in sucrose density gradients under various conditions of temperature and ionic strength. Mouse L-cell mitochondrial rRNA was eluted after cytoplasmic rRNA on a column of methylated albumin-kieselguhr.

  17. Breeding bird community colonization of sown stands of native grasses in North Dakota

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Higgins, K.F.; Arnold, T.W.; Barta, R.M.

    1984-01-01

    Breeding passerine birds were studied in three native grass plantings of predominantly western wheatgrass (Agropyron smithii) and green needlegrass (Stipa viridula) in south-central North Dakota during 1982-1984. A total of eight different species of passerines readily colonized this relatively new type of wildlife habitat during the second, third. and fourth growing seasons.

  18. Structural differences in chromosomes distinguish species in the tomato clade.

    PubMed

    Anderson, L K; Covey, P A; Larsen, L R; Bedinger, P; Stack, S M

    2010-07-01

    The tomato clade of Solanaceae is composed of 12 species that are all diploid with the same chromosome number and morphology. Species in the tomato clade are considered to have evolved primarily by genic changes rather than large-scale chromosomal rearrangements because pachytene chromosomes in F(1) hybrids synapse normally along their lengths and linkage maps of intra- and inter-specific hybrids are co-linear. However, small inversions have been reported between tomato and some of its wild relatives. Therefore, we reevaluated 5 F(1) hybrids using high-resolution, electron microscopic examination of pachytene chromosome (= synaptonemal complex) spreads to determine whether any minor structural changes had occurred among species in the tomato clade, which were not easily visible using light microscopic analysis of conventional chromosome squashes. Our study revealed a number of unexpected synaptic configurations such as mismatched kinetochores, inversion loops and reciprocal translocations. Most of these structural differences were in or close to heterochromatin that has comparatively few genes and little recombination, so they would be expected to have little effect on the evident colinearity of linkage maps, especially in euchromatin. However, these results demonstrate that substantial changes in chromosome structure have occurred among species within the tomato clade.

  19. Subtropical grass pollen allergens are important for allergic respiratory diseases in subtropical regions

    PubMed Central

    2012-01-01

    Background Grass pollen allergens are a major cause of allergic respiratory disease but traditionally prescribing practice for grass pollen allergen-specific immunotherapy has favoured pollen extracts of temperate grasses. Here we aim to compare allergy to subtropical and temperate grass pollens in patients with allergic rhinitis from a subtropical region of Australia. Methods Sensitization to pollen extracts of the subtropical Bahia grass (Paspalum notatum), Johnson grass (Sorghum halepense) and Bermuda grass (Cynodon dactylon) as well as the temperate Ryegrass (Lolium perenne) were measured by skin prick in 233 subjects from Brisbane. Grass pollen-specific IgE reactivity was tested by ELISA and cross-inhibition ELISA. Results Patients with grass pollen allergy from a subtropical region showed higher skin prick diameters with subtropical Bahia grass and Bermuda grass pollens than with Johnson grass and Ryegrass pollens. IgE reactivity was higher with pollen of Bahia grass than Bermuda grass, Johnson grass and Ryegrass. Patients showed asymmetric cross-inhibition of IgE reactivity with subtropical grass pollens that was not blocked by temperate grass pollen allergens indicating the presence of species-specific IgE binding sites of subtropical grass pollen allergens that are not represented in temperate grass pollens. Conclusions Subtropical grass pollens are more important allergen sources than temperate grass pollens for patients from a subtropical region. Targeting allergen-specific immunotherapy to subtropical grass pollen allergens in patients with allergic rhinitis in subtropical regions could improve treatment efficacy thereby reducing the burden of allergic rhinitis and asthma. PMID:22409901

  20. Differentiation of plant age in grasses using remote sensing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Knox, Nichola M.; Skidmore, Andrew K.; van der Werff, Harald M. A.; Groen, Thomas A.; de Boer, Willem F.; Prins, Herbert H. T.; Kohi, Edward; Peel, Mike

    2013-10-01

    Phenological or plant age classification across a landscape allows for examination of micro-topographical effects on plant growth, improvement in the accuracy of species discrimination, and will improve our understanding of the spatial variation in plant growth. In this paper six vegetation indices used in phenological studies (including the newly proposed PhIX index) were analysed for their ability to statistically differentiate grasses of different ages in the sequence of their development. Spectra of grasses of different ages were collected from a greenhouse study. These were used to determine if NDVI, NDWI, CAI, EVI, EVI2 and the newly proposed PhIX index could sequentially discriminate grasses of different ages, and subsequently classify grasses into their respective age category. The PhIX index was defined as: (AVNIRn+log(ASWIR2n))/(AVNIRn-log(ASWIR2n)), where AVNIRn and ASWIR2n are the respective normalised areas under the continuum removed reflectance curve within the VNIR (500-800 nm) and SWIR2 (2000-2210 nm) regions. The PhIX index was found to produce the highest phenological classification accuracy (Overall Accuracy: 79%, and Kappa Accuracy: 75%) and similar to the NDVI, EVI and EVI2 indices it statistically sequentially separates out the developmental age classes. Discrimination between seedling and dormant age classes and the adult and flowering classes was problematic for most of the tested indices. Combining information from the visible near infrared (VNIR) and shortwave infrared region (SWIR) region into a single phenological index captures the phenological changes associated with plant pigments and the ligno-cellulose absorption feature, providing a robust method to discriminate the age classes of grasses. This work provides a valuable contribution into mapping spatial variation and monitoring plant growth across savanna and grassland ecosystems.

  1. A grass molecular identification system for forensic botany: a critical evaluation of the strengths and limitations.

    PubMed

    Ward, Jodie; Gilmore, Simon R; Robertson, James; Peakall, Rod

    2009-11-01

    Plant material is frequently encountered in criminal investigations but often overlooked as potential evidence. We designed a DNA-based molecular identification system for 100 Australian grasses that consisted of a series of polymerase chain reaction assays that enabled the progressive identification of grasses to different taxonomic levels. The identification system was based on DNA sequence variation at four chloroplast and two mitochondrial loci. Seventeen informative indels and 68 single-nucleotide polymorphisms were utilized as molecular markers for subfamily to species-level identification. To identify an unknown sample to subfamily level required a minimum of four markers or nine markers for species identification. The accuracy of the system was confirmed by blind tests. We have demonstrated "proof of concept" of a molecular identification system for trace botanical samples. Our evaluation suggests that the adoption of a system that combines this approach with DNA sequencing could assist the morphological identification of grasses found as forensic evidence.

  2. Ensilage characteristics of three tropical grasses as influenced by stage of growth and addition of molasses.

    PubMed

    Tjandraatmadja, M; Norton, B W; Mac Rae, I C

    1994-01-01

    When molasses was added during ensilage of three tropical grasses [hamil grass (Panicum maximum cv. Hamil), pangola grass (Digitaria decumbens) and setaria (Setaria sphacelata cv. Kazungula)] the final pH, concentration of fermentation acids (except lactic acid) and NH3-N content were all similar after 100 days of incubation. Pangola grass silage had significantly higher lactic acid content (66 g/kg dry matter) than the other two. Adding either 4 or 8% (w/w) molasses reduced NH3-N, volatile fatty acid content and pH but increased lactic acid content in the final silages. Numbers of lactic acid bacteria remained approximately constant during the course of the fermentation, although large differences were noted in the species composition of the populations. At the time of ensiling, only Pediococcus spp. and Leuconostoc spp. were detected. By 5 days, the homo-fermentative population, notably Lactobacillus plantarum, dominated (43%) and remained dominant. Hetero-fermentative rods were only detected in the 100-day silage, where they represented 29% of the strains isolated. Homo-fermenters were more abundant in pangola (60%) and setaria (47%) silages than hamil (27%) silages. Homo-fermenter populations were lowest in the 12-week forage. Molasses additions increased homo-fermenter populations. Pangola grass gave the best quality silage but, since the water-soluble carbohydrate content in the grasses was insufficient to promote a strong lactic fermentation, the addition of 20 to 30 kg molasses/tonne should achieve satisfactory preservation.

  3. Molecular cloning of the MARCH family in grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idellus) and their response to grass carp reovirus challenge.

    PubMed

    Ou, Mi; Huang, Rong; Xiong, Lv; Luo, Lifei; Chen, Geng; Liao, Lanjie; Li, Yongming; He, Libo; Zhu, Zuoyan; Wang, Yaping

    2017-02-20

    Grass carp (Ctenopharyngodon idellus) is an economical aquaculture species in China, and the Grass Carp Reovirus (GCRV) that causes hemorrhagic disease seriously affects the grass carp cultivation industry. Substantial evidence indicates that there is an association between the membrane-associated RING-CH family of E3 ligase (MARCH) family and immune defense in mammals, while functional studies on non-mammalian MARCH proteins are limited. In order to know the characteristics of the MARCH genes in C. idellus, eight MARCH genes (MARCH1, 2, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 11) were cloned and the open reading frames (ORF) were identified in grass carp. All MARCH proteins in grass carp contained an RING-CH domain, which is characteristic of the MARCH protein. The phylogenetic analysis revealed that different MARCH proteins gathered into their separate clusters. All eight members of the MARCH gene family were detected in all tissues sampled, but the relative expression level differed. In addition, the mRNA expression of all the MARCHs was regulated at different levels in the immune organs after a GCRV challenge, and they responded robustly in both the intestine and liver. The mRNA expression of MARCH8, MHC II, TfR, IL1RAP, EGR1, and DUSP1 in the intestine after GCRV infection was analyzed, and the results showed that MARCH8 could negatively regulate TfR, IL1RAP, EGR1, and DUSP1, which signaled via the MAPK or NF-κB-activation pathways that play vital roles in immunity. Our findings identified a novel gene family in C. idellus and provided novel evidence that MARCH genes are inducible and involved in the immune response. Moreover, MARCH8 might function to negatively regulate immune receptors in C. idellus. Therefore, the MARCH might play a vital role in regulating the immune response of C. idellus.

  4. Therapeutic Applications of Rose Hips from Different Rosa Species.

    PubMed

    Mármol, Inés; Sánchez-de-Diego, Cristina; Jiménez-Moreno, Nerea; Ancín-Azpilicueta, Carmen; Rodríguez-Yoldi, María Jesús

    2017-05-25

    Rosa species, rose hips, are widespread wild plants that have been traditionally used as medicinal compounds for the treatment of a wide variety of diseases. The therapeutic potential of these plants is based on its antioxidant effects caused by or associated with its phytochemical composition, which includes ascorbic acid, phenolic compounds and healthy fatty acids among others. Over the last few years, medicinal interest in rose hips has increased as a consequence of recent research that has studied its potential application as a treatment for several diseases including skin disorders, hepatotoxicity, renal disturbances, diarrhoea, inflammatory disorders, arthritis, diabetes, hyperlipidaemia, obesity and cancer. In this review, the role of different species of Rosa in the prevention of treatment of various disorders related to oxidative stress, is examined, focusing on new therapeutic approaches from a molecular point of view.

  5. Therapeutic Applications of Rose Hips from Different Rosa Species

    PubMed Central

    Mármol, Inés; Sánchez-de-Diego, Cristina; Jiménez-Moreno, Nerea; Ancín-Azpilicueta, Carmen; Rodríguez-Yoldi, María Jesús

    2017-01-01

    Rosa species, rose hips, are widespread wild plants that have been traditionally used as medicinal compounds for the treatment of a wide variety of diseases. The therapeutic potential of these plants is based on its antioxidant effects caused by or associated with its phytochemical composition, which includes ascorbic acid, phenolic compounds and healthy fatty acids among others. Over the last few years, medicinal interest in rose hips has increased as a consequence of recent research that has studied its potential application as a treatment for several diseases including skin disorders, hepatotoxicity, renal disturbances, diarrhoea, inflammatory disorders, arthritis, diabetes, hyperlipidaemia, obesity and cancer. In this review, the role of different species of Rosa in the prevention of treatment of various disorders related to oxidative stress, is examined, focusing on new therapeutic approaches from a molecular point of view. PMID:28587101

  6. Phytochemical changes in leaves of subtropical grasses and fynbos shrubs at elevated atmospheric CO 2 concentrations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hattas, D.; Stock, W. D.; Mabusela, W. T.; Green, I. R.

    2005-07-01

    The effects of elevated atmospheric CO 2 concentrations on plant polyphenolic, tannin, nitrogen, phosphorus and total nonstructural carbohydrate concentrations were investigated in leaves of subtropical grass and fynbos shrub species. The hypothesis tested was that carbon-based secondary compounds would increase when carbon gain is in excess of growth requirements. This premise was tested in two ecosystems involving plants with different photosynthetic mechanisms and growth strategies. The first ecosystem comprised grasses from a C 4-dominated, subtropical grassland, where three plots were subjected to three different free air CO 2 enrichment treatments, i.e., elevated (600 to 800 μmol mol -1), intermediate (400 μmol mol -1) and ambient atmospheric CO 2. One of the seven grass species, Alloteropsis semialata, had a C 3 photosynthetic pathway while the other grasses were all C 4. The second ecosystem was simulated in a microcosm experiment where three fynbos species were grown in open-top chambers at ambient and 700 μmol mol -1 atmospheric CO 2 in low nutrient acid sands typical of south western coastal and mountain fynbos ecosystems. Results showed that polyphenolics and tannins did not increase in the grass species under elevated CO 2 and only in Leucadendron laureolum among the fynbos species. Similarly, foliar nitrogen content of grasses was largely unaffected by elevated CO 2, and among the fynbos species, only L. laureolum and Leucadendron xanthoconus showed changes in foliar nitrogen content under elevated CO 2, but these were of different magnitude. The overall decrease in nitrogen and phosphorus and consequent increase in C:N and C:P ratio in both ecosystems, along with the increase in polyphenolics and tannins in L. laureolum in the fynbos ecosystem, may negatively affect forage quality and decomposition rates. It is concluded that fast growing grasses do not experience sink limitation and invest extra carbon into growth rather than polyphenolics and

  7. [Fatty acids in different edible fish species from Mexico].

    PubMed

    Castro González, María Isabel; Rodríguez, Ana Gabriela Maafs; Galindo Gómez, Carlos

    2013-12-01

    Different biotic and abiotic factors determine the fatty acid (FA) composition of fish tissues and organs. This information is useful for humans due to the fact that fish consumption is associated with health benefits. The aim of the present study was to identify the variation in the concentration of fatty acids, according to different factors, among ten edible marine fish species in Mexico, collected from June to December 2009 in the largest fish market in Mexico City: Euthynnus alletteratus, Sciaenops ocellatus, Bairdiella chrysoura, Sphyraena guachancho, Symphurus elongatus, Istiophorus platypterus, Ophichthus rex, Eugerres plumieri, Eucinostomus entomelas and Oreochromrnis mossambicus. Lipid content was gravimetrically quantified, the fatty acids were determined using a gas chromatograph and the results were statistically analyzed. Total lipid content ranged from 0.93 to 1.95 g/100 g in E. entomelas and O. urolepis hornorum, respectively. E. alletteratus, B. chrysoura, S. elongatus, I. platypterus, O. rex and E. plumieri presented the following order in FA concentration: Polyunsaturated FA (PUFA)>Saturated FA (SFA)>Monounsaturated FA (MUFA). S. ocellatus, S. guachancho and E. entomelas presented SFA>PUFA>MUFA; and only O. mossambicus presented SFA>MUFA>PUFA. O. mossambicus had the highest concentration (mg/100 g) of SFA (559.40) and MUFA (442.60), while B. chrysoura presented the highest content (mg/100 g) of PUFA (663.03), n-3 PUFA (514.03), EPA+DHA (506.10) and n-6 PUFA (145.80). Biotic and abiotic factors of the analyzed fish significantly influenced their FA concentration. Subtropical species presented 42.1% more EPA+DHA than tropical specie. Values presented here will vary according to the changes in the ecosystem and characteristics of each fish species, however the information generated in the present study is useful for improving fish consumption recommendations.

  8. Accumulation of mercury in selected plant species grown in soils contaminated with different mercury compounds

    SciTech Connect

    Su, Yi; Han, Fengxiang; Shiyab, Safwan; Chen, Jian; Monts, David L.

    2007-07-01

    The objective of our research is to screen and search for suitable plant species for phyto-remediation of mercury-contaminated soil. Currently our effort is specifically focused on mercury removal from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) sites, where mercury contamination is a major concern. In order to cost effectively implement mercury remediation efforts, it is necessary now to obtain an improved understanding of biological means of removing mercury and mercury compounds.. Phyto-remediation is a technology that uses various plants to degrade, extract, contain, or immobilize contaminants from soil and water. In particular, phyto-extraction is the uptake of contaminants by plant roots and translocation within the plants to shoots or leaves. Contaminants are generally removed by harvesting the plants. We have investigated phyto-extraction of mercury from contaminated soil by using some of the known metal-accumulating plants since no natural plant species with mercury hyper-accumulating properties has yet been identified. Different natural plant species have been studied for mercury uptake, accumulation, toxicity and overall mercury removal efficiency. Various mercury compounds, such as HgS, HgCl{sub 2}, and Hg(NO{sub 3}){sub 2}, were used as contaminant sources. Different types of soil were examined and chosen for phyto-remediation experiments. We have applied microscopy and diffuse reflectance spectrometry as well as conventional analytical chemistry to monitor the phyto-remediation processes of mercury uptake, translocation and accumulation, and the physiological impact of mercury contaminants on selected plant species. Our results indicate that certain plant species, such as beard grass (Polypogon monospeliensis), accumulated a very limited amount of mercury in the shoots (<65 mg/kg), even though root mercury accumulation is significant (maximum 2298 mg/kg). Consequently, this plant species may not be suitable for mercury phyto-remediation. Other plant species

  9. Mineral concentration in selected native temperate grasses with potential use as biofuel feedstock.

    PubMed

    El-Nashaar, H M; Griffith, S M; Steiner, J J; Banowetz, G M

    2009-07-01

    Stands of native grasses along roadways, in buffer strips, riparian zones and grass prairies have potential utility as feedstock for bioenergy production. The sustainability of harvesting these stands is reliant, in part, on knowledge of the mineral concentration of the harvested grasses because removal of mineral nutrients such as phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) can impact subsequent biomass production and ecosystem services associated with these stands. Mineral content of biomass, particularly that of silicon (Si), chlorine (Cl), and sulfur (S) also impacts thermochemical conversion approaches that convert grasses into bioproducts. This study quantified Cl, S, Si, P and K in Bromus marginatus, Elymus glaucus, Poa secunda, Pseudoroegneria, Elymus lanceolatus, Elymus trachycaulus, Leymus cinereus, Leymus triticoides, and Pseudoroegneria spicata collected at three growth developmental stages from four plant introduction stations located in the western US. Differences (P< or =0.05) in mineral concentrations were associated with developmental stage, species, and location. Variability was greatest in Si concentrations which ranged from 1847 to 28620 mg kg(-1), similar to those recorded in other grasses. Variability in Cl and S concentrations also occurred, but at less magnitude than that of Si. Concentrations of P and K, two mineral fertilizer components, varied approximately threefold among these grasses. Differences in mineral concentrations among these grasses were not completely dependent upon soil mineral content. Long-term evaluations of available soil mineral concentrations under contrasting management practices are needed to quantify how local conditions impact mineral cycling, and in turn, the sustainability of harvesting these stands. The data presented here establish baselines for these species in locations subject to contrasting environmental and microbiological conditions that affect mineral cycling and availability.

  10. Rye grass is associated with fewer non-contact anterior cruciate ligament injuries than bermuda grass

    PubMed Central

    Orchard, J; Chivers, I; Aldous, D; Bennell, K; Seward, H

    2005-01-01

    Objective: To assess the contribution of ground variables including grass type to the rate of anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury in the Australian Football League (AFL), specifically which factors are primarily responsible for previously observed warm season and early season biases for ACL injuries. Methods: Grass types used at the major AFL venues from 1992 to 2004 were established by consultation with ground managers, and ground hardness and other weather variables were measured prospectively. Results: There were 115 ACL injuries occurring in matches during the survey time period, 88 with a non-contact mechanism. In multivariate analysis, use of bermuda (couch) grass as opposed to rye grass, higher grade of match, and earlier stage of the season were independent risk factors for non-contact ACL injury. Ground hardness readings did not show a significant association with ACL injury risk, whereas weather variables of high evaporation and low prior rainfall showed univariate association with injury risk but could not be entered into a logistic regression equation. Discussion: Rye grass appears to offer protection against ACL injury compared with bermuda (couch) grass fields. The likely mechanism is reduced "trapping" of football boots by less thatch. Grass species as a single consideration cannot fully explain the ACL early season bias, but is probably responsible for the warm season bias seen in the AFL. Weather variables previously identified as predictors are probably markers for predominance of bermuda over rye grass in mixed fields. PMID:16183765

  11. Population and species differences in treeline tree species germination in response to climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kueppers, L. M.; Faist, A.; Castanha, C.

    2009-12-01

    The ability of plant species to recruit within and beyond their current geographic ranges in response to climate warming may be constrained by population differences in response. A number of studies have highlighted the degree to which genotype and environment are strongly linked in forest trees (i.e., provenances), but few studies have examined whether these local adaptations are at all predictive of population or species response to change. We report the results of lab germination experiments using high and low elevation populations of both limber pine (Pinus flexilis) and Engelmann spruce (Picea engelmannii), which are important treeline species in the Rocky Mountains. Seeds collected in 2008 were germinated under two different temperature regimes (ambient and +5°C) and two different moisture regimes, and followed for 17 weeks. For both species and source elevations, warmer temperatures advanced the timing of emergence by up to 20 days, whereas the effects of moisture were less consistent. At harvest, high elevation limber pine had less root and shoot biomass, and a slightly lower root:shoot ratio, under the +5°C treatment, whereas low elevation limber pine seedling mass was not sensitive to temperature. Whether these differences persist under field conditions will be tested in a field experiment now established at Niwot Ridge, CO. The ability to accurately predict tree seedling recruitment and ultimately shifts in treeline position with climate change will improve our ability to model changes in surface albedo, water cycling and carbon cycling, all of which can generate feedbacks to regional and global climate.

  12. Immune responsiveness to phytohemagglutinin displays species but not sex differences in three anuran species

    PubMed Central

    Jin, Chenchen; Qu, Kangshan; Caviedes-Vidal, Enrique

    2017-01-01

    Phytohemagglutinin (PHA)-induced skin swelling response is widely used as a rough surrogate of integrative cell-mediated and innate immunity across multiple vertebrate taxa due to its simplification and feasibility. However, little is known whether there are sex and interspecific differences of immune responsiveness to PHA in ectotherms, especially for anurans. Therefore, we studied sex and species differences of PHA response in three anurans, Asiatic toads (Bufo gargarizans), Dark-spotted frogs (Pelophylax nigromaculatus) and Mongolian toads (Pseudepidalea raddei), captured in northern regions of Anhui Province (China). Footpad thickness was measured prior to (0 h) and after (6, 12, 24, 48 and 72 h) a PHA injection and normalized against saline injection in the opposite footpad. Body mass was recorded at the beginning (0 h) and end of each assay (72 h). Results showed effects of PHA assay, sex and taxa on body mass. Relative maximum swelling response (PHAmax) ranged from 18.58–29.75%, 9.77 to 20.56% and 21.97 to 31.78% and its occurrence over time was apparent 10.6–19.72 h , 7.74–14.01 h and 17.39–23.94 h postinjection for Asiatic toads, Dark-spotted frogs and Mongolian toads, respectively. Finally, the magnitude or timing of PHAmax in Dark-spotted frogs was significantly thinner and faster than in Mongolian toads, and Asiatic toads had an in-between value, not different from the other two species. The magnitude of PHAmax was significantly positively correlated with the timing of PHAmax considering individuals altogether, but not when analyzed within species. Our results indicate that male and female anuran species respond similarly to PHA antigen stimulation, but the magnitude and timing of PHAmax is species-specific. Briefly, we provide new evidence for the suitability of PHA assay in non-model anuran species with different body sizes, and exhort the need to further investigate the nature of PHA assay at the hematological and histological levels in order

  13. Hyperspectral optical imaging of two different species of lepidoptera

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Medina, José Manuel; Nascimento, Sérgio Miguel Cardoso; Vukusic, Pete

    2011-05-01

    In this article, we report a hyperspectral optical imaging application for measurement of the reflectance spectra of photonic structures that produce structural colors with high spatial resolution. The measurement of the spectral reflectance function is exemplified in the butterfly wings of two different species of Lepidoptera: the blue iridescence reflected by the nymphalid Morpho didius and the green iridescence of the papilionid Papilio palinurus. Color coordinates from reflectance spectra were calculated taking into account human spectral sensitivity. For each butterfly wing, the observed color is described by a characteristic color map in the chromaticity diagram and spreads over a limited volume in the color space. The results suggest that variability in the reflectance spectra is correlated with different random arrangements in the spatial distribution of the scales that cover the wing membranes. Hyperspectral optical imaging opens new ways for the non-invasive study and classification of different forms of irregularity in structural colors.

  14. Hyperspectral optical imaging of two different species of lepidoptera

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    In this article, we report a hyperspectral optical imaging application for measurement of the reflectance spectra of photonic structures that produce structural colors with high spatial resolution. The measurement of the spectral reflectance function is exemplified in the butterfly wings of two different species of Lepidoptera: the blue iridescence reflected by the nymphalid Morpho didius and the green iridescence of the papilionid Papilio palinurus. Color coordinates from reflectance spectra were calculated taking into account human spectral sensitivity. For each butterfly wing, the observed color is described by a characteristic color map in the chromaticity diagram and spreads over a limited volume in the color space. The results suggest that variability in the reflectance spectra is correlated with different random arrangements in the spatial distribution of the scales that cover the wing membranes. Hyperspectral optical imaging opens new ways for the non-invasive study and classification of different forms of irregularity in structural colors. PMID:21711872

  15. Iodine Emissions from Seaweeds: Species-dependent and Seasonal Differences

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Adams, Thomas; Ball, Stephen; Leblanc, Catherine; Potin, Philippe

    2015-04-01

    Emissions of iodine from macroalgae into the marine boundary layer (MBL) significantly impact tropospheric chemistry and the biogeochemical cycling of iodine. Gas-phase iodine chemistry perturbs the usual HOx and NOx radical cycles, provides additional sink reactions for tropospheric ozone, and modifies atmospheric oxidizing capacity. Iodine oxides (IxOywith x ≥ 2) formed through the reaction of iodine atoms with ozone nucleate new aerosol particles which, if they grow sufficiently, can act as cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) and so influence the local climate in coastal regions. Some seaweeds, such as brown algae, are important bio-accumulators of iodine. They specifically induce iodine metabolism to protect themselves against oxidative stress, both as a defence mechanism and when exposed to air around low tide. Indeed the dominant emission source of iodine into the atmosphere in coastal regions comes from intertidal macroalgal beds, particularly those of kelp species. We present results from an extensive laboratory study of molecular iodine (I2) emissions from five seaweed species (two Fucales, Ascophyllum nodosum and Fucus vesiculosus, and three kelp species, Laminaria digitata, L. hyperborea and Saccharina latissima). Eighty-four incubation experiments were performed at the Station Biologique in Roscoff (Brittany, France) between September 2012 and June 2013 to quantify species-dependent I2 emission rates in response to progressive air exposure, mimicking low tide, and to investigate any seasonal differences. Measurements were conducted on 'fresh' biological samples: Ascophyllum and Fucus thalli were collected whilst still submerged on an ebbing tide, transported in seawater to the laboratory and analysed immediately; kelp samples were collected by boat, stored in an outside aquarium in running seawater and analysed within a few days. I2 emissions were quantified at high time resolution by broadband cavity enhanced absorption spectrometry (1σ detection limit

  16. Characteristics of Staphylococcus aureus strains isolated from different animal species.

    PubMed

    Devriese, L A; Oeding, P

    1976-11-01

    Staphylococcus aureus strains originating from humans, cows, poultry, pigs, dogs and pigeons were characterised according to the biotyping scheme of Hájek and Marsálek (1971). All strains obtained from poultry, dogs and pigeons and the majority of bovine, human and porcine strains were classifiable as belonging to different biotypes. Two types were found to be present among poultry strains isolated in Europe and Japan. The porcine strains formed a heterogenic collection. One biotype predominated in the other host species. The characteristic S aureus wall teichoic acid (beta-N-acetylglucosaminyl ribitol teichoic acid) was present in nearly all poultry and pig strains. Strains from dogs and pigeons were found to present several properties which were not in agreement with the species description given for S aureus. They did not produce acetoin from glucose and their capacity to produce acid from mannitol in anaerobic conditions was very weak or absent. They were often negative in the clumping factor (slide coagulase) test and usually did not produce hyaluronidase. The production of acid from glucose in anaerobic conditions was slower and less intensive in these strains than in the S aureus strains from other origins. The results of this study support the concept of subdividing the species S aureus into biotypes or ecotypes.

  17. Protocols for Robust Herbicide Resistance Testing in Different Weed Species

    PubMed Central

    Panozzo, Silvia; Scarabel, Laura; Collavo, Alberto; Sattin, Maurizio

    2015-01-01

    Robust protocols to test putative herbicide resistant weed populations at whole plant level are essential to confirm the resistance status. The presented protocols, based on whole-plant bioassays performed in a greenhouse, can be readily adapted to a wide range of weed species and herbicides through appropriate variants. Seed samples from plants that survived a field herbicide treatment are collected and stored dry at low temperature until used. Germination methods differ according to weed species and seed dormancy type. Seedlings at similar growth stage are transplanted and maintained in the greenhouse under appropriate conditions until plants have reached the right growth stage for herbicide treatment. Accuracy is required to prepare the herbicide solution to avoid unverifiable mistakes. Other critical steps such as the application volume and spray speed are also evaluated. The advantages of this protocol, compared to others based on whole plant bioassays using one herbicide dose, are related to the higher reliability and the possibility of inferring the resistance level. Quicker and less expensive in vivo or in vitro diagnostic screening tests have been proposed (Petri dish bioassays, spectrophotometric tests), but they provide only qualitative information and their widespread use is hindered by the laborious set-up that some species may require. For routine resistance testing, the proposed whole plant bioassay can be applied at only one herbicide dose, so reducing the costs. PMID:26167668

  18. Protocols for Robust Herbicide Resistance Testing in Different Weed Species.

    PubMed

    Panozzo, Silvia; Scarabel, Laura; Collavo, Alberto; Sattin, Maurizio

    2015-07-02

    Robust protocols to test putative herbicide resistant weed populations at whole plant level are essential to confirm the resistance status. The presented protocols, based on whole-plant bioassays performed in a greenhouse, can be readily adapted to a wide range of weed species and herbicides through appropriate variants. Seed samples from plants that survived a field herbicide treatment are collected and stored dry at low temperature until used. Germination methods differ according to weed species and seed dormancy type. Seedlings at similar growth stage are transplanted and maintained in the greenhouse under appropriate conditions until plants have reached the right growth stage for herbicide treatment. Accuracy is required to prepare the herbicide solution to avoid unverifiable mistakes. Other critical steps such as the application volume and spray speed are also evaluated. The advantages of this protocol, compared to others based on whole plant bioassays using one herbicide dose, are related to the higher reliability and the possibility of inferring the resistance level. Quicker and less expensive in vivo or in vitro diagnostic screening tests have been proposed (Petri dish bioassays, spectrophotometric tests), but they provide only qualitative information and their widespread use is hindered by the laborious set-up that some species may require. For routine resistance testing, the proposed whole plant bioassay can be applied at only one herbicide dose, so reducing the costs.

  19. Species differences in amphibian olfactory neuron reactivity to a monoclonal antibody.

    PubMed

    Crowe, M J; Pixley, S K

    1992-05-01

    A monoclonal antibody immunostained a subpopulation of olfactory sensory neurons in cryostat sections of the olfactory mucosa of the grass frog, Rana pipiens, and the bullfrog, Rana catesbeiana. However, in the olfactory tissues of the African clawed frog, Xenopus laevis, only mucus and mucus-secreting components were stained, and no cell-specific immunoreactivity was seen in the tiger salamander, Ambystoma tigrinum. This antibody is a useful marker of olfactory neuronal subpopulations in some amphibians and illustrates the difficulties in cross-species immunocytochemistry.

  20. Comparing optical properties of different species of diatoms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maibohm, C.; Friis, S. M. M.; Su, Y.; Rottwitt, K.

    2015-03-01

    Diatoms are single cellular algae encapsulated in an external wall of micro-structured porous silica called the frustule. Diatoms are present in all water environments and contribute with 20-25 % of the global primary production of oxygen by photosynthesis. The appearance of the frustule is very species dependent with huge variety in size, shape, and microstructure. We have experimentally investigated optical properties of frustules of several species of diatoms to further understand light harvesting properties together with common traits, effects and differences between the different frustules. We have observed, when incident light interacts with the micro-structured frustule it is multiple diffracted giving rise to wavelength dependent multiple focal points and other optical effects. Experimental results have been simulated and well confirmed by free space FFT propagation routine analysis software. The software uses parameters which are extracted from experimental images as basis for simulation and allows us to extract the influence of the different elements of the frustule. The information could be used both for predicting optical properties of diatoms and by changing frustule parameters, maybe by altering growth conditions of the diatoms tailor their optical properties.

  1. Species differences in biliary excretion of benzo(a)pyrene

    SciTech Connect

    Weyand, E.H.; Bevan, D.R.

    1986-05-01

    Biliary excretion of benzo(a)pyrene (B(a)P) was investigated in rats, hamsters, and guinea pigs following intratracheal administration. (/sup 3/H)-B(a)P, in amounts of approximately 150 ng or 350 ..mu..g, was instilled into lungs and amounts of radioactivity excreted in bile were monitored for six hrs following administration. Differences in biliary excretion of (/sup 3/H)-B(a)P and/or metabolites among species were observed at low doses but not at high doses. Six hours after instillation of a low dose of B(a)P, 70, 54, and 62% of the dose was excreted in bile of rats, hamsters, and guinea pigs, respectively. Upon administration of the higher dose of B(a)P, approximately 50% of the dose was excreted in bile in six hrs by all species. Thus, rats and guinea pigs exhibit differences in biliary excretion of low and high doses of B(a)P whereas hamsters do not. Profiles of phase II metabolites in rats and hamsters were similar at both low and high doses, with the majority of metabolites being glucuronides and thioether conjugates. However, differences in relative amounts of these conjugates were observed between the two doses, with a shift towards a greater proportion of glucuronides at the higher dose. Metabolites in bile from guinea pigs were primarily thioether conjugates, which accounted for 88% of metabolites at the low dose and 95% at the high dose.

  2. Fruit Phenolic Composition of Different Elderberry Species and Hybrids.

    PubMed

    Mikulic-Petkovsek, Maja; Ivancic, Anton; Todorovic, Biljana; Veberic, Robert; Stampar, Franci

    2015-10-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate a detailed composition and content of phenolic compounds in fruits of 4 elderberry species (Sambucus nigra, S. cerulea, S. ebulus, and S racemosa) and 8 interspecific hybrids. Hydroxycinnamic acids (HCAs) represented the major share of phenolics in analyzed elderberries; caffeoylquinic and p-coumaroylquinic acids were most abundant. Flavanols (catechin, epicatechin, and different procyanidins) were the second major phenolic group detected in range from 2% to 30% of total analyzed phenolics. From the group of flavonols, 13 different quercetin glycosides, 7 kaempferol glycosides, and 8 isorhamnetin glycosides have been quantified. Rutin was the major flavonol in all studied genotypes. S. ebulus was characterized by the highest level of total HCAs, catechin, epicatechin, and most flavonols. Some elderberry hybrids, for example JA × RAC, CER × NI, and JA × (JA × NI), are perspective for further studies because they have high content of phenolic compounds. The results of research could contribute to breed cultivars, which may prove interesting for food-processing industries. Different levels of phenolic compounds have been measured in fruit of analyzed elderberry species and interspecific hybrids. Natural evaluation of elderberry genetic resources, the identification of phenolic compounds, and assessment of their properties are of great interest to breeders and directly valid for pharmaceutical and food industry. © 2015 Institute of Food Technologists®

  3. Different stereoselectivity in the reduction of pulegone by Mentha species.

    PubMed

    Fuchs, S; Beck, T; Mosandl, A

    2001-04-01

    Aqueous solutions of [2H]-labeled pulegone enantiomers were fed to Mentha spicata ssp. spicata L. and Mentha spicata ssp. crispata L. shoot tip and first leaf pair. After solid phase microextraction the essential oil was analysed with enantioselective multidimensional gas chromatography/mass spectrometry. Both Mentha spicata species were able to convert labelled (1R)- and (1S)-pulegone at the same rate into the corresponding menthone and isomenthone, indicating an unspecific process. The reduction of both pulegone enantiomers preferably led to the cis-stereoisomers. The observed stereoselectivity is completely different from those of pulegone reduction by Mentha x piperita L.

  4. Possible species differences between Sarcocystis from mule deer and cattle.

    PubMed

    Hudkins-Vivion, G; Kistner, T P; Fayer, R

    1976-01-01

    In preliminary studies with Sarcocystis from bovine (Bos taurus) and mule deer (Odocoileus hemionus hemionus), a coccidia-free laboratory dog (Canis familiaris) and captive coyote (Canis latrans) were fed flesh from a local Sarcocystis-infected bovine and later flesh from an infected mule deer from Eastern Oregon. Sporocysts were passed in the feces of both canine hosts 10-15 days after ingestion of infected meat. There was a statistical difference in the size of sporocysts derived from bovine and deer. It was concluded that the Sarcocystis from bovine and mule deer probably constitute distinct species with a life cycle dependent on the respective ruminant host and a canine host.

  5. Cotrapping different species in ion traps using multiple radio frequencies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Trypogeorgos, Dimitris; Foot, Christopher J.

    2016-08-01

    We consider the stability of systems subjected to periodic parametric driving in the context of ions confined by oscillating electric fields. The behavior of these systems can be understood in terms of a pseudopotential approximation and resonances arising from parametric excitation. We investigate the key properties of a way of operating a linear Paul trap with two radio frequencies that simultaneously confines two species with extremely different charge-to-mass ratios. The theoretical calculations have been verified by molecular dynamics simulations and normal modes analysis.

  6. Soluble phenolic compounds in fresh and ensiled orchard grass (Dactylis glomerata L.), a common species in permanent pastures with potential as a biomass feedstock.

    PubMed

    Hauck, Barbara; Gallagher, Joe A; Morris, S Michael; Leemans, David; Winters, Ana L

    2014-01-15

    High-value coproducts can greatly improve the feasibility of utilizing plant feedstocks for biorefining and biofuel production. Plant polyphenolics have potential application in the pharmaceutical and cosmetic industries. Orchard grass varieties have been noted for accumulation of polyphenolic compounds, and the current study determined the soluble phenol profile and content in the orchard grass variety 'Abertop'. Hydroxycinnamates and flavonoids were monitored during the transition from vegetative to flowering stage at maximum crop yield. Caffeic acid derivatives, related to bioactives in the Asian medicinal herb Salvia miltiorrhiza , and novel hydroxycinnamate-flavone conjugates were also identified in extracts. Harvest yields of hydroxycinnamates and flavonoids ranged from 2.6 to 4.0 kg/ha and from 2.1 to 5.1 kg/ha, respectively. Abundant compounds showed high levels of antioxidant activity comparable with that of trolox. Minimal changes in soluble phenol content and composition were observed after ensiling with the exception of increases in caffeic acid, a caffeic acid derivative, and a caffeic acid breakdown product, dihydroxystyrene.

  7. Metabolomic Analyses of Leishmania Reveal Multiple Species Differences and Large Differences in Amino Acid Metabolism

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Lijie; Zhang, Tong; Watson, David G.; Silva, Ana Marta; Coombs, Graham H.

    2015-01-01

    Comparative genomic analyses of Leishmania species have revealed relatively minor heterogeneity amongst recognised housekeeping genes and yet the species cause distinct infections and pathogenesis in their mammalian hosts. To gain greater information on the biochemical variation between species, and insights into possible metabolic mechanisms underpinning visceral and cutaneous leishmaniasis, we have undertaken in this study a comparative analysis of the metabolomes of promastigotes of L. donovani, L. major and L. mexicana. The analysis revealed 64 metabolites with confirmed identity differing 3-fold or more between the cell extracts of species, with 161 putatively identified metabolites differing similarly. Analysis of the media from cultures revealed an at least 3-fold difference in use or excretion of 43 metabolites of confirmed identity and 87 putatively identified metabolites that differed to a similar extent. Strikingly large differences were detected in their extent of amino acid use and metabolism, especially for tryptophan, aspartate, arginine and proline. Major pathways of tryptophan and arginine catabolism were shown to be to indole-3-lactate and arginic acid, respectively, which were excreted. The data presented provide clear evidence on the value of global metabolomic analyses in detecting species-specific metabolic features, thus application of this technology should be a major contributor to gaining greater understanding of how pathogens are adapted to infecting their hosts. PMID:26368322

  8. Host preference and suitability of grasses for Oebalus pugnax

    PubMed Central

    Awuni, GA; Gore, J; Cook, D; Bond, JA; Musser, FR; Adams, CA

    2014-01-01

    The rice stink bug, Oebalus pugnax (Fabricius) (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae: Carpocorini), though graminaceous, discriminates among its numerous host grass species. This could represent a feeding preference, it could be related to host suitability for growth and development. To clarify the role of host grass discrimination, two laboratory studies were conducted: (1) free-choice tests to evaluate preferences of O. pugnax among 11 wild host grass species found in three rice-producing counties of the central Mississippi Delta (MS, USA), and (2) no-choice tests to evaluate the impact of rice (Oryza sativa L.), junglerice [Echinochloa colona (L.) Link], and dallisgrass (Paspalum dilatatum Poir.) (all Poaceae), on the development of O. pugnax from second instar to adult. In the free-choice test, four experiments were conducted, each with four sets of host grass species and observed 1, 2, 4, 8, and 16 h after release in cages. Approximately 4 h was necessary for O. pugnax to settle on preferred host grasses. Oebalus pugnax showed a feeding preference for junglerice over all 10 other grass species. Bahiagrass, Paspalum notatum Flueggé, was the least preferred. The no-choice tests showed significant effect of host grass species on O. pugnax mean development time of nymphal survival to adults. Survival of nymphs was lower and mean development time was longer on dallisgrass compared to rice and junglerice. Knowledge of O. pugnax rate of growth and development on host grasses could be useful in the future development of rice integrated pest management strategies. PMID:25635144

  9. Host preference and suitability of grasses for Oebalus pugnax.

    PubMed

    Awuni, Ga; Gore, J; Cook, D; Bond, Ja; Musser, Fr; Adams, Ca

    2014-08-01

    The rice stink bug, Oebalus pugnax (Fabricius) (Hemiptera: Pentatomidae: Carpocorini), though graminaceous, discriminates among its numerous host grass species. This could represent a feeding preference, it could be related to host suitability for growth and development. To clarify the role of host grass discrimination, two laboratory studies were conducted: (1) free-choice tests to evaluate preferences of O. pugnax among 11 wild host grass species found in three rice-producing counties of the central Mississippi Delta (MS, USA), and (2) no-choice tests to evaluate the impact of rice (Oryza sativa L.), junglerice [Echinochloa colona (L.) Link], and dallisgrass (Paspalum dilatatum Poir.) (all Poaceae), on the development of O. pugnax from second instar to adult. In the free-choice test, four experiments were conducted, each with four sets of host grass species and observed 1, 2, 4, 8, and 16 h after release in cages. Approximately 4 h was necessary for O. pugnax to settle on preferred host grasses. Oebalus pugnax showed a feeding preference for junglerice over all 10 other grass species. Bahiagrass, Paspalum notatum Flueggé, was the least preferred. The no-choice tests showed significant effect of host grass species on O. pugnax mean development time of nymphal survival to adults. Survival of nymphs was lower and mean development time was longer on dallisgrass compared to rice and junglerice. Knowledge of O. pugnax rate of growth and development on host grasses could be useful in the future development of rice integrated pest management strategies.

  10. H-Isotopic Fractionation During Biosynthesis of Leaf Waxes in C3 Plants: Trees vs. Grasses

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toney, J. L.; Hou, J.; Huang, Y.

    2006-12-01

    Recent studies indicate that hydrogen isotope (D/H) ratios of higher-plant leaf waxes in lake sediments have great potential to be used as a proxy for reconstructing past source water isotope composition and/or relative humidity on continents. However, hydrogen isotopic fractionation during biosynthesis of leaf waxes in various terrestrial plants remains poorly understood. A recent study of 7 terrestrial and aquatic plant types from a single site in Massachusetts shows that D/H ratios among different plant types can vary as much as 70‰, with the largest difference occurring between tree and grasses (Hou et al., in review). This variability may have been caused by different degrees of evapotranspiration among different plant types (e.g., trees vs. grasses), but could also be attributed to different biosynthetic isotopic fractionation. We designed a series of growth chamber experiments to trace the sources of hydrogen isotopic difference between trees and grasses. Five tree species [white ash (Fraxinus pennsylvanica), red oak (Quercus rubra), red maple (Acer rubrum), spruce (Picea sp.) and white cedar (Thuja occidentalis)] and three grass species [orchard grass (Dactylis glomerata), timothy weed (Phleum pratense), Foxtail (Setaria sp.)] were grown in a growth chamber under controlled conditions. Plants were irrigated with the same source water. We tracked hydrogen isotopic variation of water from source water to stem water to leaf water, and eventually to leaf waxes. Fifty-three leaf and stem samples were harvested. Water from these samples was vacuum-extracted and analyzed for D/H ratios, and compared with D/H ratios of corresponding leaf waxes. Our results allow us to determine whether evapotranspiration rates or intrinsic isotopic fractionation during biosynthesis was the dominant factor controlling the H isotopic ratios of leaf waxes in trees and grasses. Our results are also helpful for interpreting hydrogen isotopic variations of sedimentary leaf waxes.

  11. Species-specific differences in X chromosome inactivation in mammals.

    PubMed

    Sado, Takashi; Sakaguchi, Takehisa

    2013-10-01

    In female mammals, the dosage difference in X-linked genes between XX females and XY males is compensated for by inactivating one of the two X chromosomes during early development. Since the discovery of the X inactive-specific transcript (XIST) gene in humans and its subsequent isolation of the mouse homolog, Xist, in the early 1990s, the molecular basis of X chromosome inactivation (X-inactivation) has been more fully elucidated using genetically manipulated mouse embryos and embryonic stem cells. Studies on X-inactivation in other mammals, although limited when compared with those in the mice, have revealed that, while their inactive X chromosome shares many features with those in the mice, there are marked differences in not only some epigenetic modifications of the inactive X chromosome but also when and how X-inactivation is initiated during early embryonic development. Such differences raise the issue about what extent of the molecular basis of X-inactivation in the mice is commonly shared among others. Recognizing similarities and differences in X-inactivation among mammals may provide further insight into our understanding of not only the evolutionary but also the molecular aspects for the mechanism of X-inactivation. Here, we reviewed species-specific differences in X-inactivation and discussed what these differences may reveal.

  12. Genetics of species differences in sailfin and shortfin mollies.

    PubMed

    Loveless, S A; Bridges, W C; Ptacek, M B

    2010-10-01

    Premating reproductive isolation is a strong barrier to hybridization in natural populations, but little is known about the genetic mechanisms that allow changes in mating signals to develop and whether different components of a mating signal can evolve in concert when sexual selection favors phenotypic associations between them. In this study, we report results suggesting that changes in a behavioural trait (courtship display) and multiple phenotypically associated morphological traits (dorsal fin characters and length of the gonopodium) have contributed to divergence in mating signals used by sailfin mollies. Through the use of reciprocal F1 and backcross hybrids, we show that morphological traits important in separating sailfin from shortfin molly species have a genetic basis and are inherited in an autosomal, additive manner. We also report significant associations between the size of certain morphological traits (length of the dorsal fin and length of the gonopodium) and the tendency of males to perform courtship displays or gonopodial thrusts. In particular, higher courtship display rates were associated with increased dorsal fin length but decreased gonopodium length, characteristics most similar to sailfin species. Such phenotypic associations between different components of a mating signal suggest that selective forces can act in concert on multiple aspects of the signal, hence, promoting divergence and speciation in sailfin mollies.

  13. An outbreak of lethal adenovirus infection among different otariid species.

    PubMed

    Inoshima, Yasuo; Murakami, Tomoaki; Ishiguro, Naotaka; Hasegawa, Kazuhiro; Kasamatsu, Masahiko

    2013-08-30

    An outbreak of fatal fulminant hepatitis at a Japanese aquarium involved 3 otariids: a California sea lion (Zalophus californianus), a South African fur seal (Arctocephalus pusillus) and a South American sea lion (Otaria flavescens). In a span of about a week in February 2012, 3 otariids showed diarrhea and were acutely low-spirited; subsequently, all three animals died within a period of 3 days. Markedly increased aspartate amino transferase and alanine amino transferase activities were observed. Necrotic hepatitis and eosinophilic intranuclear inclusion bodies in liver hepatocytes and intestinal epithelial cells were observed in the South American sea lion on histological examination. Otarine adenovirus DNA was detected from the livers of all three animals by polymerase chain reaction and determination of the sequences showed that all were identical. These results suggest that a single otarine adenovirus strain may have been the etiological agent of this outbreak of fatal fulminant hepatitis among the different otariid species, and it may be a lethal threat to wild and captive otariids. This is the first evidence of an outbreak of lethal adenovirus infection among different otariid species.

  14. Pests in ornamental grasses

    USDA-ARS?s Scientific Manuscript database

    Ornamental perennial grasses are becoming increasingly popular in the landscape due to their beauty and ease of care. Although few pest problems are encountered in ornamental grasses, they are not immune to insects and disease. Two lined spittlebugs (Prosapia bicincta) can cause damage to ornament...

  15. Chapter 18. Grasses

    Treesearch

    Stephen B. Monsen; Richard Stevens; Nancy Shaw

    2004-01-01

    Grasses are adapted to a wide range of edaphic and climatic conditions and are found in nearly all plant communities. In the Western United States, grasses are seeded on disturbances to provide forage (Hull and Holmgren 1964; Vallentine 1989), wildlife habitat (Plummer and others 1968), and watershed stability (Cornelius 1946; Hafenrichter and others 1949; Piper 1934;...

  16. Physiological and morphological responses of Ischaemum rugosum Salisb. (wrinkled grass) to different nitrogen rates and rice seeding rates.

    PubMed

    Awan, Tahir Hussain; Chauhan, Bhagirath Singh; Cruz, Pompe C Sta

    2014-01-01

    Ischaemum rugosum is a competitive weed in direct-seeded rice systems. Developing integrated weed management strategies that promote the suppression of weeds by crop density, cultivar selection, and nutrition requires better understanding of the extent to which rice interferes with the growth of this weed and how it responds to resource limitation due to rice interference. The growth of I. rugosum was studied when grown with four rice seeding rates (0, 25, 50, and 100 kg ha(-1)) and four nitrogen (N) rates (0, 50, 100, and 150 kg ha(-1)). Compared to the weed plants grown alone, weed tiller number was reduced by 63-80%, leaf number by 68-77%, leaf area by 69-77%, leaf biomass by 72-84%, and inflorescence biomass by 81-93% at the rice seeding rates of 25-100 kg ha(-1). All these parameters increased with increasing rates of N from 0 to 150 kg ha(-1). At weed maturity, I. rugosum plants were 100% taller than rice at 0 kg N ha(-1), whereas, with added N, the weeds were only 50% taller than rice. Weed biomass increased by 82-160%, whereas rice biomass increased by 92-229%, with the application of 50-150 kg N ha(-1). Added N favored rice biomass production more than it did the weed. Rice interference reduced the height and biomass of I. rugosum, but did not suppress its growth completely. I. rugosum showed the ability to reduce the effects of rice interference by increasing leaf area, leaf weight ratio, and specific leaf area, and by decreasing the root-shoot weight ratio in comparison to the weed plants grown alone. The results suggest that rice crop interference alone may reduce I. rugosum growth but may not provide complete control of this weed. The need for integrated weed management practices to effectively control this weed species is highlighted.

  17. Grass Cell Walls: A Story of Cross-Linking

    PubMed Central

    Hatfield, Ronald D.; Rancour, David M.; Marita, Jane M.

    2017-01-01

    Cell wall matrices are complex composites mainly of polysaccharides, phenolics (monomers and polymers), and protein. We are beginning to understand the synthesis of these major wall components individually, but still have a poor understanding of how cell walls are assembled into complex matrices. Valuable insight has been gained by examining intact components to understand the individual elements that make up plant cell walls. Grasses are a prominent group within the plant kingdom, not only for their important roles in global agriculture, but also for the complexity of their cell walls. Ferulate incorporation into grass cell wall matrices (C3 and C4 types) leads to a cross-linked matrix that plays a prominent role in the structure and utilization of grass biomass compared to dicot species. Incorporation of p-coumarates as part of the lignin structure also adds to the complexity of grass cell w