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Sample records for level ecological study

  1. Aligning molecular studies of mycorrhizal fungal diversity with ecologically important levels of diversity in ecosystems

    PubMed Central

    Sanders, Ian R; Rodriguez, Alia

    2016-01-01

    Arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi (AMF) occur in the roots of most plants and are an ecologically important component of the soil microbiome. Richness of AMF taxa is a strong driver of plant diversity and productivity, thus providing a rationale for characterizing AMF diversity in natural ecosystems. Consequently, a large number of molecular studies on AMF community composition are currently underway. Most published studies, at best, only address species or genera-level resolution. However, several experimental studies indicate that variation in plant performance is large among plants colonised by different individuals of one AMF species. Thus, there is a potential disparity between how molecular community ecologists are currently describing AMF diversity and the level of AMF diversity that may actually be ecologically relevant. We propose a strategy to find many polymorphic loci that can define within-species genetic variability within AMF, or at any level of resolution desired within the Glomermycota. We propose that allele diversity at the intraspecific level could then be measured for target AMF groups, or at other levels of resolution, in environmental DNA samples. Combining the use of such markers with experimental studies on AMF diversity would help to elucidate the most important level(s) of AMF diversity in plant communities. Our goal is to encourage ecologists who are trying to explain how mycorrhizal fungal communities are structured to take an approach that could also yield meaningful information that is relevant to the diversity, functioning and productivity of ecosystems. PMID:27128992

  2. Maternal Mortality in Colombia in 2011: A Two Level Ecological Study

    PubMed Central

    Cárdenas-Cárdenas, Luz Mery; Cotes-Cantillo, Karol; Chaparro-Narváez, Pablo Enrique; Fernández-Niño, Julián Alfredo; Paternina-Caicedo, Angel; Castañeda-Orjuela, Carlos; De la Hoz-Restrepo, Fernando

    2015-01-01

    Objective Maternal mortality reduction is a Millennium Development Goal. In Colombia, there is a large disparity in the maternal mortality ratio (MMR) between and into departments (states) and also between municipalities. We examined socioeconomics variables at the municipal and departmental levels which could be associated to the municipal maternal mortality in Colombia. Methods A multilevel ecology study was carried out using different national data sources in Colombia. The outcome variable was the MMR at municipal level in 2011 with multidimensional poverty at municipal and department level as the principal independent variables and other measures of the social and economic characteristics at municipal and departmental level were also considered explicative variables (overall fertility municipal rate, percentage of local rural population, health insurance coverage, per capita territorial participation allocated to the health sector, transparency index and Gini coefficient). The association between MMR and socioeconomic contextual conditions at municipal and departmental level was assessed using a multilevel Poisson regression model. Results The MMR in the Colombian municipalities was associated significantly with the multidimensional poverty (relative ratio of MMR: 3.52; CI 95%: 1.09-11.38). This association was stronger in municipalities from departments with the highest poverty (relative ratio of MMR: 7.14; CI 95%: 2.01-25.35). Additionally, the MMR at municipal level was marginally associated with municipally health insurance coverage (relative ratio of MMR: 0.99; CI 95%: 0.98-1.00), and significantly with transparency index at departmental level (relative ratio of MMR: 0.98; CI 95%: 0.97-0.99). Conclusion Poverty and transparency in a contextual level were associated with the increase of the municipal MMR in Colombia. The results of this study are useful evidence for informing the public policies discussion and formulation processes with a differential

  3. Ecological baseline studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vickers, D.

    1980-01-01

    Environmental studies of Merritt Island are discussed. Five areas of the island's ecology are examined. They include: a terrestrial community analyses, a plant community study, a small mammal population study, a rainfall study, and an ichthyological analyses.

  4. Using the MitoB method to assess levels of reactive oxygen species in ecological studies of oxidative stress

    PubMed Central

    Salin, Karine; Auer, Sonya K.; Villasevil, Eugenia M.; Anderson, Graeme J.; Cairns, Andrew G.; Mullen, William; Hartley, Richard C.; Metcalfe, Neil B.

    2017-01-01

    In recent years evolutionary ecologists have become increasingly interested in the effects of reactive oxygen species (ROS) on the life-histories of animals. ROS levels have mostly been inferred indirectly due to the limitations of estimating ROS from in vitro methods. However, measuring ROS (hydrogen peroxide, H2O2) content in vivo is now possible using the MitoB probe. Here, we extend and refine the MitoB method to make it suitable for ecological studies of oxidative stress using the brown trout Salmo trutta as model. The MitoB method allows an evaluation of H2O2 levels in living organisms over a timescale from hours to days. The method is flexible with regard to the duration of exposure and initial concentration of the MitoB probe, and there is no transfer of the MitoB probe between fish. H2O2 levels were consistent across subsamples of the same liver but differed between muscle subsamples and between tissues of the same animal. The MitoB method provides a convenient method for measuring ROS levels in living animals over a significant period of time. Given its wide range of possible applications, it opens the opportunity to study the role of ROS in mediating life history trade-offs in ecological settings. PMID:28117373

  5. Outdoor air pollution, subtypes and severity of ischemic stroke – a small-area level ecological study

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Evidence linking outdoor air pollution and incidence of ischemic stroke subtypes and severity is limited. We examined associations between outdoor PM10 and NO2 concentrations modeled at a fine spatial resolution and etiological and clinical ischemic stroke subtypes and severity of ischemic stroke. Methods We used a small-area level ecological study design and a stroke register set up to capture all incident cases of first ever stroke (1995–2007) occurring in a defined geographical area in South London (948 census output areas; population of 267839). Modeled PM10 and NO2 concentrations were available at a very fine spatial scale (20 meter by 20 meter grid point resolution) and were aggregated to output area level using postcode population weighted averages. Ischemic stroke was classified using the Oxford clinical classification, the Trial of Org 10172 in Acute Stroke Treatment (TOAST) etiological classification, National Institutes of Health Stroke Scale (NIHSS) score and a pragmatic clinical severity classification based on Glasgow coma score, ability to swallow, urinary continence and death <2 days of stroke onset. Results Mean (SD) concentrations were 25.1 (1.2) ug/m3 (range 23.3-36.4) for PM10 and 41.4 (3.0) ug/m3 (range 35.4-68.0) for NO2. There were 2492 incident cases of ischemic stroke. We found no evidence of association between these pollutants and the incidence of ischemic stroke subtypes classified using the Oxford and TOAST classifications. We found no significant association with stroke severity using NIHSS severity categories. However, we found that outdoor concentrations of both PM10 and NO2 appeared to be associated with increased incidence of mild but not severe ischemic stroke, classified using the pragmatic clinical severity classification. For mild ischemic stroke, the rate ratio in the highest PM10 category by tertile was 1.20 (1.05-1.38) relative to the lowest category. The rate ratio in the highest NO2 category was 1.22 (1

  6. Audubon Ecology Study Program.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Audubon Society, New York, NY.

    The materials in the set include a student reader "The Story of Ecology," a leaders' guide, and a large, pictorial wall chart. The student reader is divided into 10 units relating to a definition of ecology, the sun and life, air and the water cycle, major divisions of the earth, plants and food chains, distribution of plants and animals,…

  7. Ecological concerns following Superstorm Sandy: stressor level and recreational activity levels affect perceptions of ecosystem

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Coastal habitats are vulnerable to storms, and with increasing urbanization, sea level rise, and storm frequency, some urban populations are at risk. This study examined perceptions of respondents in coastal and central New Jersey to Superstorm Sandy, including: 1) concerns about ecological resources and effects (open-ended question), 2) information sources for ecology of the coast (open-ended), and 3) ratings of a list of ecological services as a function of demographics, location (coastal, central Jersey), stressor level (power outages, high winds, flooding) and recreational rates. “Wildlife” and “fish” were the ecological concerns mentioned most often, while beaches and dunes were most often mentioned for environmental concerns. Television, radio, and web/internet were sources trusted for ecological information. The data indicate 1) stressor level was a better predictor of ratings of ecological services than geographical location, but days engaged in recreation contributed the most to variations in ratings, 2) ecological services were rated the highest by respondents with the highest stressor levels, and by those from the coast, compared to others, 3) Caucasians rated ecological services higher than all others, and 4) recreational rates were highest for coastal respondents, and ratings for ecological services increased with recreational rates. Only 20 % of respondents listed specific ecological services as one of their three most important environmental concerns. These data will be useful for increasing preparedness, enhancing educational strategies for shore protection, and providing managers and public policy makers with data essential to developing resiliency strategies. PMID:27011729

  8. Ecological concerns following Superstorm Sandy: stressor level and recreational activity levels affect perceptions of ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Burger, Joanna

    2015-06-01

    Coastal habitats are vulnerable to storms, and with increasing urbanization, sea level rise, and storm frequency, some urban populations are at risk. This study examined perceptions of respondents in coastal and central New Jersey to Superstorm Sandy, including: 1) concerns about ecological resources and effects (open-ended question), 2) information sources for ecology of the coast (open-ended), and 3) ratings of a list of ecological services as a function of demographics, location (coastal, central Jersey), stressor level (power outages, high winds, flooding) and recreational rates. "Wildlife" and "fish" were the ecological concerns mentioned most often, while beaches and dunes were most often mentioned for environmental concerns. Television, radio, and web/internet were sources trusted for ecological information. The data indicate 1) stressor level was a better predictor of ratings of ecological services than geographical location, but days engaged in recreation contributed the most to variations in ratings, 2) ecological services were rated the highest by respondents with the highest stressor levels, and by those from the coast, compared to others, 3) Caucasians rated ecological services higher than all others, and 4) recreational rates were highest for coastal respondents, and ratings for ecological services increased with recreational rates. Only 20 % of respondents listed specific ecological services as one of their three most important environmental concerns. These data will be useful for increasing preparedness, enhancing educational strategies for shore protection, and providing managers and public policy makers with data essential to developing resiliency strategies.

  9. A Simulated Stream Ecology Study.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zampella, Robert A.

    1979-01-01

    Describes a simulated field experience to study stream ecology in the classroom. Secondary students determine the composition of the stream community, describe the distribution of the benthic invertebrates, and design a food web. (Author/MA)

  10. The ecological module of BOATS-1.0: a bioenergetically constrained model of marine upper trophic levels suitable for studies of fisheries and ocean biogeochemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carozza, David Anthony; Bianchi, Daniele; Galbraith, Eric Douglas

    2016-04-01

    Environmental change and the exploitation of marine resources have had profound impacts on marine communities, with potential implications for ocean biogeochemistry and food security. In order to study such global-scale problems, it is helpful to have computationally efficient numerical models that predict the first-order features of fish biomass production as a function of the environment, based on empirical and mechanistic understandings of marine ecosystems. Here we describe the ecological module of the BiOeconomic mArine Trophic Size-spectrum (BOATS) model, which takes an Earth-system approach to modelling fish biomass at the global scale. The ecological model is designed to be used on an Earth-system model grid, and determines size spectra of fish biomass by explicitly resolving life history as a function of local temperature and net primary production. Biomass production is limited by the availability of photosynthetic energy to upper trophic levels, following empirical trophic efficiency scalings, and by well-established empirical temperature-dependent growth rates. Natural mortality is calculated using an empirical size-based relationship, while reproduction and recruitment depend on both the food availability to larvae from net primary production and the production of eggs by mature adult fish. We describe predicted biomass spectra and compare them to observations, and conduct a sensitivity study to determine how they change as a function of net primary production and temperature. The model relies on a limited number of parameters compared to similar modelling efforts, while retaining reasonably realistic representations of biological and ecological processes, and is computationally efficient, allowing extensive parameter-space analyses even when implemented globally. As such, it enables the exploration of the linkages between ocean biogeochemistry, climate, and upper trophic levels at the global scale, as well as a representation of fish biomass for

  11. The ecological module of BOATS-1.0: a bioenergetically-constrained model of marine upper trophic levels suitable for studies of fisheries and ocean biogeochemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Carozza, D. A.; Bianchi, D.; Galbraith, E. D.

    2015-12-01

    Environmental change and the exploitation of marine resources have had profound impacts on marine communities, with potential implications for ocean biogeochemistry and food security. In order to study such global-scale problems, it is helpful to have computationally efficient numerical models that predict the first-order features of fish biomass production as a function of the environment, based on empirical and mechanistic understandings of marine ecosystems. Here we describe the ecological module of the BiOeconomic mArine Trophic Size-spectrum (BOATS) model, which takes an Earth-system approach to modeling fish biomass at the global scale. The ecological model is designed to be used on an Earth System model grid, and determines size spectra of fish biomass by explicitly resolving life history as a function of local temperature and net primary production. Biomass production is limited by the availability of photosynthetic energy to upper trophic levels, following empirical trophic efficiency scalings, and by well-established empirical temperature-dependent growth rates. Natural mortality is calculated using an empirical size-based relationship, while reproduction and recruitment depend on both the food availability to larvae from net primary production and the production of eggs by mature adult fish. We describe predicted biomass spectra and compare them to observations, and conduct a sensitivity study to determine how the change as a function of net primary production and temperature. The model relies on a limited number of parameters compared to similar modeling efforts, while retaining realistic representations of biological and ecological processes, and is computationally efficient, allowing extensive parameter-space analyses even when implemented globally. As such, it enables the exploration of the linkages between ocean biogeochemistry, climate, and upper trophic levels at the global scale, as well as a representation of fish biomass for idealized studies

  12. Effect modification by drinking water hardness of the association between nitrate levels and gastric cancer: evidence from an ecological study.

    PubMed

    Chiu, Hui-Fen; Kuo, Chao-Hung; Tsai, Shang-Shyue; Chen, Chih-Cheng; Wu, Deng-Chuang; Wu, Trong-Neng; Yang, Chun-Yuh

    2012-01-01

    The objectives of this study were to (1) examine the relationship between nitrate levels in public water supplies and risk of death from gastric cancer and (2) determine whether calcium (Ca) and magnesium (Mg) levels in drinking water might modify the effects of nitrate on the risk of gastric cancer development. A matched cancer case-control study was used to investigate the relationship between the risk of death attributed to gastric cancer and exposure to nitrate in drinking water in Taiwan. All deaths due to gastric cancer in Taiwan residents from 2006 through 2010 were obtained from the Bureau of Vital Statistics of the Taiwan Provincial Department of Health. Deaths from other causes served as controls and were pair-matched to cancer cases by gender, year of birth, and year of death. Information on the levels of nitrate-nitrogen (NO(3)-N), Ca, and Mg in drinking water were collected from Taiwan Water Supply Corporation (TWSC). The municipality of residence for cancer cases and controls was presumed to be the source of the subject's NO(3)-N, Ca, and Mg exposure via drinking water. Relative to individuals whose NO(3)-N exposure levels were <0.38 ppm, the adjusted odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) for gastric cancer occurrence was 1.16 (1.05-1.29) for individuals who resided in municipalities served by drinking water with a NO(3)-N exposure ≥ 0.38 ppm. There was apparent evidence of an interaction between drinking water NO(3)-N levels and low Ca and Mg intake via drinking water. Our findings showed that the correlation between NO(3)-N exposure and risk of gastric cancer development was influenced by Ca and Mg levels in drinking water. This is the first study to report effects modification by Ca and Mg intake from drinking water on the relationship between NO(3)-N exposure and risk of gastric cancer occurrence. Increased knowledge of the mechanistic interactions between Ca, Mg, and NO(3)-N in reducing risk of gastric cancer development will aid in

  13. [Application of land economic ecological niche in landscape pattern analysis at county level: A case study of Jinghe County in Xinjiang, China].

    PubMed

    Yu, Hai-yang; Zhang, Fei; Wang, Juan; Zhou, Mei

    2015-12-01

    The theory of land economic ecological niche was used to analyze the regional landscape pattern in this article, with an aim to provide a new method for the characterization and representation of landscape pattern. The Jinghe County region, which is ecologically fragile, was selected as an example for the study, and the Landsat images of 1990, 1998, 2011 and 2013 were selected as remote sensing data. The land economic ecological niche of land use types calculated by ecostate-ecorole theory, combined with landscape ecology theory, was discussed in application of land economic ecological niche in county landscape pattern analysis. The results showed that, during the study period, the correlations between land economic ecological niche of farmland, construction land, and grassland with the parameters, including landscape patch number (NP), aggregated index (AI), fragmented index (FN) and fractal dimension (FD), were significant. Regional landscape was driven by the changes of land economic ecological niche, and the trend of economic development could be represented by land economic ecological niche change in Jinghe County. Land economic ecological niche was closely related with the land use types which could yield direct economic benefits, which could well explain the landscape pattern characteristics in Jinghe County when combined with the landscape indices.

  14. A truly ecological epigenetics study.

    PubMed

    Bossdorf, Oliver; Zhang, Yuanye

    2011-04-01

    Until a few years ago, epigenetics was a field of research that had nothing to do with ecology and that virtually no ecologist had ever heard of. This is now changing, as more and more ecologists learn about epigenetic processes and their potential ecological and evolutionary relevance, and a new research field of ecological epigenetics is beginning to take shape. One question that is particularly intriguing ecologists is to what extent epigenetic variation is an additional, and hitherto overlooked, source of natural variation in ecologically important traits. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Herrera & Bazaga (2011) provide one of the first attempts to truly address this question in an ecological setting. They study variation of DNA methylation in a wild population of the rare, long-lived violet Viola cazorlensis, and they use these data to explore interrelations between environmental, genetic and epigenetic variation, and in particular the extent to which these factors are related to long-term differences in herbivore damage among plants. They find substantial epigenetic variation among plant individuals. Interestingly, this epigenetic variation is significantly correlated with long-term differences in herbivory, but only weakly with herbivory-related DNA sequence variation, which suggests that besides habitat, substrate and genetic variation, epigenetic variation may be an additional, and at least partly independent, factor influencing plant–herbivore interactions in the field. Although the study by Herrera & Bazaga (2011) raises at least as many new questions as it answers, it is a pioneering example of how epigenetics can be incorporated into ecological field studies, and it illustrates the value and potential novel insights to be gained from such efforts.

  15. Social Studies: Ecology and Survival.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liftin, Elaine

    Designed as an elective course of study for grades seven through nine, this curriculum guide provides a study of the political, economic, and social aspects of ecological problems in the community, state, or nation. The focus is on the causes and effects of pollution and alternative courses of governmental and student (citizen) action. A suggested…

  16. An Ecological Study of Community-Level Correlates of Suicide Mortality Rates in the Flemish Region of Belgium, 1996-2005

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hooghe, Marc; Vanhoutte, Bram

    2011-01-01

    An ecological study of age-standardized suicide rates in Belgian communities (1996-2005) was conducted using spatial regression techniques. Community characteristics were significantly related to suicide rates. There was mixed support for the social integration perspective: single person households were associated with higher suicide rates, while…

  17. Current directions in screening-level ecological risk assessments

    SciTech Connect

    Carlsen, T M; Efroymson, R A

    2000-12-11

    Ecological risk assessment (ERA) is a tool used by many regulatory agencies to evaluate the impact to ecological receptors from changes in environmental conditions. Widespread use of ERAs began with the United States Environmental Protection Agency's Superfund program to assess the ecological impact from hazardous chemicals released to the environment. Many state hazardous chemical regulatory agencies have adopted the use of ERAs, and several state regulatory agencies are evaluating the use of ERAs to assess ecological impacts from releases of petroleum and gas-related products. Typical ERAs are toxicologically-based, use conservative assumptions with respect to ecological receptor exposure duration and frequency, often require complex modeling of transport and exposure and are very labor intensive. In an effort to streamline the ERA process, efforts are currently underway to develop default soil screening levels, to identify ecological screening criteria for excluding sites from formal risk assessment, and to create risk-based corrective action worksheets. This should help reduce the time spent on ERAs, at least for some sites. Work is also underway to incorporate bioavailability and spatial considerations into ERAs. By evaluating the spatial nature of contaminant releases with respect to the spatial context of the ecosystem under consideration, more realistic ERAs with respect to the actual impact to ecological receptors at the population, community or ecosystem scale should be possible. In addition, by considering the spatial context, it should be possible to develop mitigation and monitoring efforts to more appropriately address such sites within the context of an ecological framework.

  18. Sewage impacts coral reefs at multiple levels of ecological organization.

    PubMed

    Reopanichkul, Pasinee; Schlacher, Thomas A; Carter, R W; Worachananant, Suchai

    2009-09-01

    Against a backdrop of rising sea temperatures and ocean acidification which pose global threats to coral reefs, excess nutrients and turbidity continue to be significant stressors at regional and local scales. Because interventions usually require local data on pollution impacts, we measured ecological responses to sewage discharges in Surin Marine Park, Thailand. Wastewater disposal significantly increased inorganic nutrients and turbidity levels, and this degradation in water quality resulted in substantial ecological shifts in the form of (i) increased macroalgal density and species richness, (ii) lower cover of hard corals, and (iii) significant declines in fish abundance. Thus, the effects of nutrient pollution and turbidity can cascade across several levels of ecological organization to change key properties of the benthos and fish on coral reefs. Maintenance or restoration of ecological reef health requires improved wastewater management and run-off control for reefs to deliver their valuable ecosystems services.

  19. The Virtual Field Station (VFS): Using A Virtual Reality Environment for Ecological Fieldwork in A-Level Biological Studies--Case Study 3.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Poland, Roger; La Velle, Linda Baggott; Nichol, Jon

    2003-01-01

    Describes a teacher-generated case study on the effectiveness of a Virtual Field Station for teaching an A Level biology topic. Argues that a Virtual Field Centre is an effective substitute for actuality in terms of the development of student knowledge and understanding for examination purposes. Discuses how science education is rapidly developing…

  20. Particulate air pollution and chronic ischemic heart disease in the eastern United States: a county level ecological study using satellite aerosol data

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background There are several known factors that cause ischemic heart disease. However, the part played by air pollution still remains something of a mystery. Recent attention has focused on the chronic effect of particulate matter on heart disease. Satellite-derived aerosol optical depth (AOD) was found to be correlated with PM2.5 in the eastern US. The objective of this study was to examine if there is an association between aerosol air pollution as indicated by AOD and chronic ischemic heart disease (CIHD) in the eastern US. Methods An ecological geographic study method was employed. Race and age standardized mortality rate (SMR) of CIHD was computed for each of the 2306 counties for the time period 2003–2004. A mean AOD raster grid for the same period was derived from Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrometer (MODIS) aerosol data and the average AOD was calculated for each county. A bivariate Moran's I scatter plot, a map of local indicator of spatial association (LISA) clusters, and three regression models (ordinary least square, spatial lag, and spatial error) were used to analyze the relationship between AOD and CIHD SMR. Results The global Moran's I value is 0.2673 (p = 0.001), indicating an overall positive spatial correlation of CIHD SMR and AOD. The entire study area is dominated by spatial clusters of AOD against SMR (high AOD and high SMR in the east, and low AOD and low SMR in the west) (permutations = 999, p = 0.05). Of the three regression models, the spatial error model achieved the best fit (R2 = 0.28). The effect of AOD is positive and significant (beta = 0.7774, p = 0.01). Conclusion Aerosol particle pollution has adverse effect on CIHD mortality risk in the eastern US. High risk of CIHD mortality was found in areas with elevated levels of outdoor aerosol air pollution as indicated by satellite derived AOD. The evidence of the association would support targeting of policy interventions on such areas to reduce air pollution levels. Remote sensing

  1. Wildlife ecological screening levels for inhalation of volatile organic chemicals.

    PubMed

    Gallegos, Patricia; Lutz, Jill; Markwiese, James; Ryti, Randall; Mirenda, Rich

    2007-06-01

    For most chemicals, evaluation of ecological risk typically does not address inhalation because ingestion dominates exposure. However, burrowing ecological receptors have an increased exposure potential from inhalation at sites contaminated with volatile chemicals in the subsurface. Evaluation of ecological risk from contaminants like volatile organic chemicals (VOCs) is constrained by a lack of relevant ecological screening levels (ESLs). To address this need, inhalation ESLs were developed for 16 VOCs: Acetone, benzene, carbon tetrachloride, chloroform, chloromethane, dichlorodifluoromethane, 1,1-dichloroethane, 1,2-dichloroethane, 1,1-dichloroethene, methylene chloride, tetrachloroethene, toluene, 1,1,1-trichloroethane, trichloroethene, trichlorofluoromethane, and total xylene. These ESLs are based on Botta's pocket gopher (Thomomys bottae) as a representative fossorial receptor. The ESLs are presented with an emphasis on the process for developing inhalation toxicity reference values to illustrate the selection of suitable toxicity data and effect levels from the literature. The resulting ESLs provide a quantitative method for evaluating ecological risk of VOCs through comparison to relevant exposure data such as direct burrow-air measurements. The toxicity reference value development and ESL calculation processes and assumptions detailed here are provided as bases from which risk assessors can use or refine to suit site-specific needs with respect to toxicity and exposure inputs.

  2. [Ecological studies in environmental health: Beyond epidemiology].

    PubMed

    Blanco-Becerra, Luis C; Pinzón-Flórez, Carlos E; Idrovo, Álvaro J

    2015-08-01

    Ecological studies provide important and frequent sources of evidence of environmental health, since their unit of analysis is populations. This review summarizes the foundations of ecological studies with the premise that they can be performed using quantitative, qualitative or mixed methods. It presents the logic behind their design, their role in exploring causality, the variables and categories of analysis and the design principles and techniques used to collect data. Examples of ecological studies performed in Latin America are then presented, as well as some common methodological problems and options to address them. Lastly, the relevance of quantitative and qualitative ecological studies to environmental health as a way to overcome the dominance of conceptual and methodological individualism is highlighted, though ecological studies alone do not suffice for studying population health.

  3. ECOLOGICAL SOIL SCREENING LEVELS FOR SOIL INVERTEBRATES AND PLANTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecological Soil Screening Levels (Eco-SSLs) are being developed for 24 inorganic and inorganic chemicals for soil invertebrates and plants using procedures developed by a Task Group of the USEPA Eco-SSL Work Group. The Eco-SSL Work Group is a collaboration among USEPA, DoD, DOE, ...

  4. Spatially Explicit Landscape-Level Ecological Risks Induced by Land Use and Land Cover Change in a National Ecologically Representative Region in China.

    PubMed

    Gong, Jian; Yang, Jianxin; Tang, Wenwu

    2015-11-09

    Land use and land cover change is driven by multiple influential factors from environmental and social dimensions in a land system. Land use practices of human decision-makers modify the landscape of the land system, possibly leading to landscape fragmentation, biodiversity loss, or environmental pollution-severe environmental or ecological impacts. While landscape-level ecological risk assessment supports the evaluation of these impacts, investigations on how these ecological risks induced by land use practices change over space and time in response to alternative policy intervention remain inadequate. In this article, we conducted spatially explicit landscape ecological risk analysis in Ezhou City, China. Our study area is a national ecologically representative region experiencing drastic land use and land cover change, and is regulated by multiple policies represented by farmland protection, ecological conservation, and urban development. We employed landscape metrics to consider the influence of potential landscape-level disturbance for the evaluation of landscape ecological risks. Using spatiotemporal simulation, we designed scenarios to examine spatiotemporal patterns in landscape ecological risks in response to policy intervention. Our study demonstrated that spatially explicit landscape ecological risk analysis combined with simulation-driven scenario analysis is of particular importance for guiding the sustainable development of ecologically vulnerable land systems.

  5. Spatially Explicit Landscape-Level Ecological Risks Induced by Land Use and Land Cover Change in a National Ecologically Representative Region in China

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Jian; Yang, Jianxin; Tang, Wenwu

    2015-01-01

    Land use and land cover change is driven by multiple influential factors from environmental and social dimensions in a land system. Land use practices of human decision-makers modify the landscape of the land system, possibly leading to landscape fragmentation, biodiversity loss, or environmental pollution—severe environmental or ecological impacts. While landscape-level ecological risk assessment supports the evaluation of these impacts, investigations on how these ecological risks induced by land use practices change over space and time in response to alternative policy intervention remain inadequate. In this article, we conducted spatially explicit landscape ecological risk analysis in Ezhou City, China. Our study area is a national ecologically representative region experiencing drastic land use and land cover change, and is regulated by multiple policies represented by farmland protection, ecological conservation, and urban development. We employed landscape metrics to consider the influence of potential landscape-level disturbance for the evaluation of landscape ecological risks. Using spatiotemporal simulation, we designed scenarios to examine spatiotemporal patterns in landscape ecological risks in response to policy intervention. Our study demonstrated that spatially explicit landscape ecological risk analysis combined with simulation-driven scenario analysis is of particular importance for guiding the sustainable development of ecologically vulnerable land systems. PMID:26569270

  6. Paracoccidioidomycosis in Colombia: an ecological study.

    PubMed Central

    Calle, D.; Rosero, D. S.; Orozco, L. C.; Camargo, D.; Castañeda, E.; Restrepo, A.

    2001-01-01

    The natural habitat of Paracoccidioides brasiliensis, agent of paracoccidioidomycosis (PCM), remains unknown. This study is aimed at establishing associations between the ecological variables present in all Colombian municipalities and the incidence of PCM. Records of 940 patients were studied and several ecological variables analysed, as well as their association to amount of patients per total rural population in each municipality, determined through a multivariate analysis. All 940 patients came from 216 municipalities (20-3%), out of which, 93 were birthplace and place of long-term residence for 121 patients. The Incidence Rate Ratio (IRR) was determined for these 93 municipalities. The following variables fitted the model: altitude from 1,000 to 1,499 metres above sea level (IRR = 6.37), rainfall from 2000 to 2999 mm (IRR = 2.15), presence of humid forests (Holdridge) (IRR = 1.79) and coffee (IRR = 1.95), tobacco (IRR = 3.59) crops. These results indicate that these municipalities constitute reservareas for P. brasiliensis (Borelli). PMID:11349982

  7. Multi-level human evolution: ecological patterns in hominin phylogeny.

    PubMed

    Parravicini, Andrea; Pievani, Telmo

    2016-06-20

    Evolution is a process that occurs at many different levels, from genes to ecosystems. Genetic variations and ecological pressures are hence two sides of the same coin; but due both to fragmentary evidence and to the influence of a gene-centered and gradualistic approach to evolutionary phenomena, the field of paleoanthropology has been slow to take the role of macro-evolutionary patterns (i.e. ecological and biogeographical at large scale) seriously. However, several very recent findings in paleoanthropology stress both climate instability and ecological disturbance as key factors affecting the highly branching hominin phylogeny, from the earliest hominins to the appearance of cognitively modern humans. Allopatric speciation due to geographic displacement, turnover-pulses of species, adaptive radiation, mosaic evolution of traits in several coeval species, bursts of behavioral innovation, serial dispersals out of Africa, are just some of the macro-evolutionary patterns emerging from the field. The multilevel approach to evolution proposed by paleontologist Niles Eldredge is adopted here as interpretative tool, and has yielded a larger picture of human evolution that integrates different levels of evolutionary change, from local adaptations in limited ecological niches to dispersal phenotypes able to colonize an unprecedented range of ecosystems. Changes in global climate and Earth's surface most greatly affected human evolution. Precisely because it is cognitively hard for us to appreciate the long-term common destiny we share with the whole biosphere, it is particularly valuable to highlight the accumulating evidence that human evolution has been deeply affected by global ecological changes that transformed our African continent of origin.

  8. Interactions between temperature and nutrients across levels of ecological organization.

    PubMed

    Cross, Wyatt F; Hood, James M; Benstead, Jonathan P; Huryn, Alexander D; Nelson, Daniel

    2015-03-01

    Temperature and nutrient availability play key roles in controlling the pathways and rates at which energy and materials move through ecosystems. These factors have also changed dramatically on Earth over the past century as human activities have intensified. Although significant effort has been devoted to understanding the role of temperature and nutrients in isolation, less is known about how these two factors interact to influence ecological processes. Recent advances in ecological stoichiometry and metabolic ecology provide a useful framework for making progress in this area, but conceptual synthesis and review are needed to help catalyze additional research. Here, we examine known and potential interactions between temperature and nutrients from a variety of physiological, community, and ecosystem perspectives. We first review patterns at the level of the individual, focusing on four traits--growth, respiration, body size, and elemental content--that should theoretically govern how temperature and nutrients interact to influence higher levels of biological organization. We next explore the interactive effects of temperature and nutrients on populations, communities, and food webs by synthesizing information related to community size spectra, biomass distributions, and elemental composition. We use metabolic theory to make predictions about how population-level secondary production should respond to interactions between temperature and resource supply, setting up qualitative predictions about the flows of energy and materials through metazoan food webs. Last, we examine how temperature-nutrient interactions influence processes at the whole-ecosystem level, focusing on apparent vs. intrinsic activation energies of ecosystem processes, how to represent temperature-nutrient interactions in ecosystem models, and patterns with respect to nutrient uptake and organic matter decomposition. We conclude that a better understanding of interactions between temperature and

  9. Four opportunities for studies of ecological succession.

    PubMed

    Prach, Karel; Walker, Lawrence R

    2011-03-01

    Lessons learned from the study of ecological succession have much to offer contemporary environmental problem solving but these lessons are being underutilized. As anthropogenic disturbances increase, succession is more relevant than ever. In this review, we suggest that succession is particularly suitable to address concerns about biodiversity loss, climate change, invasive species, and ecological restoration. By incorporating modern experimental techniques and linking results across environmental gradients with meta-analyses, studies of succession can substantially improve our understanding of other ecological phenomena. Succession can help predict changes in biodiversity and ecosystem services impacted by invasive species and climate change and guide manipulative responses to these disruptions by informing restoration efforts. Succession is still a critical, integrative concept that is central to ecology.

  10. Levels of organization in biology: on the nature and nomenclature of ecology's fourth level.

    PubMed

    Lidicker, William Z

    2008-02-01

    Viewing the universe as being composed of hierarchically arranged systems is widely accepted as a useful model of reality. In ecology, three levels of organization are generally recognized: organisms, populations, and communities (biocoenoses). For half a century increasing numbers of ecologists have concluded that recognition of a fourth level would facilitate increased understanding of ecological phenomena. Sometimes the word "ecosystem" is used for this level, but this is arguably inappropriate. Since 1986, I and others have argued that the term "landscape" would be a suitable term for a level of organization defined as an ecological system containing more than one community type. However, "landscape" and "landscape level" continue to be used extensively by ecologists in the popular sense of a large expanse of space. I therefore now propose that the term "ecoscape" be used instead for this fourth level of organization. A clearly defined fourth level for ecology would focus attention on the emergent properties of this level, and maintain the spatial and temporal scale-free nature inherent in this hierarchy of organizational levels for living entities.

  11. Overcoming ecologic bias using the two-phase study design.

    PubMed

    Wakefield, Jon; Haneuse, Sebastien J-P A

    2008-04-15

    Ecologic (aggregate) data are widely available and widely utilized in epidemiologic studies. However, ecologic bias, which arises because aggregate data cannot characterize within-group variability in exposure and confounder variables, can only be removed by supplementing ecologic data with individual-level data. Here the authors describe the two-phase study design as a framework for achieving this objective. In phase 1, outcomes are stratified by any combination of area, confounders, and error-prone (or discretized) versions of exposures of interest. Phase 2 data, sampled within each phase 1 stratum, provide accurate measures of exposure and possibly of additional confounders. The phase 1 aggregate-level data provide a high level of statistical power and a cross-classification by which individuals may be efficiently sampled in phase 2. The phase 2 individual-level data then provide a control for ecologic bias by characterizing the within-area variability in exposures and confounders. In this paper, the authors illustrate the two-phase study design by estimating the association between infant mortality and birth weight in several regions of North Carolina for 2000-2004, controlling for gender and race. This example shows that the two-phase design removes ecologic bias and produces gains in efficiency over the use of case-control data alone. The authors discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the approach.

  12. Methodology Series Module 7: Ecologic Studies and Natural Experiments

    PubMed Central

    Setia, Maninder Singh

    2017-01-01

    In this module, we have discussed study designs that have not been covered in the previous modules – ecologic studies and natural experiments. In an ecologic study, the unit of analysis is a group or aggregate rather than the individual. It may be the characteristics of districts, states, or countries. For example, per capita income across countries, income quintiles across districts, and proportion of college graduates in states. If the data already exist (such as global measures and prevalence of diseases, data sets such as the National Family Health Survey, census data), then ecologic studies are cheap and data are easy to collect. However, one needs to be aware of the “ecologic fallacy.” The researcher should not interpret ecologic level results at the individual level. In “natural experiments,” the researcher does not assign the exposure (as is the case in interventional studies) to the groups in the study. The exposure is assigned by a natural process. This may be due to existing policies or services (example, one city has laws against specific vehicles and the other city does not); changes in services or policies; or introduction of new laws (such helmet for bikers and seat-belts for cars). We would like to encourage researchers to explore the possibility of using these study designs to conduct studies. PMID:28216721

  13. Ecological relevance of Sentinels' biomarker responses: a multi-level approach.

    PubMed

    Seabra Pereira, Camilo D; Abessa, Denis M S; Choueri, Rodrigo B; Almagro-Pastor, Victor; Cesar, Augusto; Maranho, Luciane A; Martín-Díaz, María Laura; Torres, Ronaldo J; Gusso-Choueri, Paloma K; Almeida, João E; Cortez, Fernando S; Mozeto, Antonio A; Silbiger, Helcy L N; Sousa, Eduinetty C P M; Del Valls, Tommas Angel; Bainy, Afonso C D

    2014-05-01

    In response to the need for more sensitive and rapid indicators of environmental quality, sublethal effects on the lowest levels of biological organization have been investigated. The ecological relevance of these responses assumes a prevailing role to assure effectiveness as indicator of ecological status. This study aimed to investigate the linkages between biomarker responses of caged bivalves and descriptive parameters of macrobenthic community structure. For this purpose a multi-level environmental assessment of marine and estuarine zones was performed in São Paulo coast, Brazil. Multivariate analysis was applied to identify linkages between biological responses and ecological indices, as well as to characterizing the studied stations. Individuals of the marine mussel Perna perna caged along Santos Bay showed signs of oxidative stress, lysosomal membrane destabilization, histological alterations and reduced embryonic development. The estuarine oyster Crassostrea rhizophorae caged along Santos Port Channel showed alterations on biotransformation enzymes and antioxidant system, DNA damage and lysosomal membrane destabilization. The benthic community analysis showed reduced richness and diversity in the same areas of the Santos bay and estuary where biomarker responses were altered. Our results revealed that xenobiotics are inducing physiological stress, which may lead to changes of the benthic community structure and deterioration of the ecological status over time. Integrating biomarker responses and ecological indexes improved certainty that alterations found at community level could be related to xenobiotic as stressors, which was very useful to improve the discriminatory power of the environmental assessment.

  14. Ecological interactions affecting population-level responses to chemical stress in Mesocyclops leuckarti.

    PubMed

    Kulkarni, Devdutt; Hommen, Udo; Schäffer, Andreas; Preuss, Thomas G

    2014-10-01

    Higher tiers of ecological risk assessment (ERA) consider population and community-level endpoints. At the population level, the phenomenon of density dependence is one of the most important ecological processes that influence population dynamics. In this study, we investigated how different mechanisms of density dependence would influence population-level ERA of the cyclopoid copepod Mesocyclops leuckarti under toxicant exposure. We used a combined approach of laboratory experiments and individual-based modelling. An individual-based model was developed for M. leuckarti to simulate population dynamics under triphenyltin exposure based on individual-level ecological and toxicological data from laboratory experiments. The study primarily aimed to-(1) determine which life-cycle processes, based on feeding strategies, are most significant in determining density dependence (2) explore how these mechanisms of density dependence affect extrapolation from individual-level effects to the population level under toxicant exposure. Model simulations showed that cannibalism of nauplii that were already stressed by TPT exposure contributed to synergistic effects of biotic and abiotic factors and led to a twofold stress being exerted on the nauplii, thereby resulting in a higher population vulnerability compared to the scenario without cannibalism. Our results suggest that in population-level risk assessment, it is easy to underestimate toxicity unless underlying ecological interactions including mechanisms of population-level density regulation are considered. This study is an example of how a combined approach of experiments and mechanistic modelling can lead to a thorough understanding of ecological processes in ecotoxicology and enable a more realistic ERA.

  15. The Ecology of Study Areas.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sommer, Robert

    This project was conducted to determine the conditions that make a satisfying study environment in colleges and universities and to relay the findings to those who design and manage educational spaces. The investigation focused upon the process of studying and its relation to environmental setting, and data was primarily gathered through site…

  16. ECOLOGICAL SOIL SCREENING LEVELS (ECO-SSLS) FOR SUPERFUND

    EPA Science Inventory

    The US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) has established ecological soil screening values for 24 soil contaminants frequently of ecological concern for terrestrial plants and animals at hazardous waste sites. The Eco-SSL derivation process represents the collaborative effor...

  17. The ecological study of memory.

    PubMed Central

    Neisser, U

    1997-01-01

    The study of memory has long been dominated by the structural tradition, and especially by the experimental analysis of mechanisms of information processing. That dominance may soon be brought to an end by the progress of neuroscience, which offers more direct ways of studying the mechanisms in question. At that point functional issues may move to centre stage. Those issues include the act of remembering and its social functions, the skills and presuppositions of the remembered, the interaction of those skills and presuppositions with the particular material being remembered, and the determinants of accuracy and confabulation in recall. PMID:9415921

  18. Forest Community: An Ecological Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zipko, Stephen J.

    1974-01-01

    Discusses science activities designed to examine a balanced community in an unspoiled wooded section, including the study of physical and floral characteristics, shrubs, small and large trees, and animals. Indicates that the students' awareness of man's place in nature and nature's place in man is enhanced through such activities. (CC)

  19. Ecological-level associations between highly processed food intakes and plasma phospholipid elaidic acid concentrations: results from a cross-sectional study within the European prospective investigation into cancer and nutrition (EPIC).

    PubMed

    Chajès, Véronique; Biessy, Carine; Byrnes, Graham; Deharveng, Geneviève; Saadatian-Elahi, Mitra; Jenab, Mazda; Peeters, Petra H M; Ocké, Marga; Bueno-de-Mesquita, H Bas; Johansson, Ingegerd; Hallmans, Göran; Manjer, Jonas; Wirfält, Elisabet; Jakszyn, Paula; González, Carlos A; Huerta, Jose-Maria; Martinez, Carmen; Amiano, Pilar; Suárez, Laudina Rodriguez; Ardanaz, Eva; Tjønneland, Anne; Halkjaer, Jytte; Overvad, Kim; Jakobsen, Marianne Uhre; Berrino, Franco; Pala, Valeria; Palli, Domenico; Tumino, Rosario; Vineis, Paolo; de Magistris, Maria Santucci; Spencer, Elisabeth A; Crowe, Francesca L; Bingham, Sheila; Khaw, Kay-Tee; Linseisen, Jakob; Rohrmann, Sabine; Boeing, Heiner; Nöethlings, Ute; Olsen, Karina Standahl; Skeie, Guri; Lund, Eiliv; Trichopoulou, Antonia; Zilis, Dimosthenis; Oustoglou, Erifili; Clavel-Chapelon, Françoise; Riboli, Elio; Slimani, Nadia

    2011-11-01

    Elaidic acid is the main unnatural trans fatty acid isomer occurring during partial hydrogenation of vegetable oils used as ingredients for the formulation of processed foods. The main objective is to assess associations between processed food intakes and plasma phospholipid elaidic acid concentrations within the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition study. A cross-sectional study was used to determine fatty acid profiles in 3,003 subjects from 16 centers. Single 24-h dietary recalls (24-HDR) were collected using a standardized computerized interview program. Food intakes were computed according to their degree of processing (moderately/nonprocessed foods, processed staple foods, highly processed foods). Adjusted ecological and individual correlations were calculated between processed food intakes and plasma elaidic acid levels. At the population level, mean intakes of highly processed foods were strongly correlated with mean levels of plasma elaidic acid in men (P = 0.0016) and in women (P = 0.0012). At the individual level, these associations remained but at a much lower level in men (r = 0.08, P = 0.006) and in women (r = 0.09, P = 0.0001). The use of an averaged 24-HDR measure of highly processed food intakes is adequate for predicting mean levels of plasma elaidic acid among European populations.

  20. Interior Least Tern (Sternula antillarum) breeding distribution and ecology: implications for population-level studies and the evaluation of alternative management strategies on large, regulated rivers

    PubMed Central

    Lott, Casey A; Wiley, Robert L; Fischer, Richard A; Hartfield, Paul D; Scott, J Michael

    2013-01-01

    Interior Least Terns (Sternula antillarum) (ILT) are colonial, fish-eating birds that breed within active channels of large sand bed rivers of the Great Plains and in the Lower Mississippi Valley. Multipurpose dams, irrigation structures, and engineered navigation systems have been present on these rivers for many decades. Despite severe alteration of channels and flow regimes, regulation era floods have remained effective at maintaining bare sandbar nesting habitat on many river segments and ILT populations have been stable or expanding since they were listed as endangered in 1985. We used ILT breeding colony locations from 2002 to 2012 and dispersal information to identify 16 populations and 48 subpopulations. More than 90% of ILT and >83% of river km with suitable nesting habitat occur within the two largest populations. However, replicate populations remain throughout the entire historical, geophysical, and ecological range of ILT. Rapid colonization of anthropogenic habitats in areas that were not historically occupied suggests metapopulation dynamics. The highest likelihood of demographic connectivity among ILT populations occurs across the Southern Plains and the Lower Mississippi River, which may be demographically connected with Least Tern populations on the Gulf Coast. Paired ecological and bird population models are needed to test whether previously articulated threats limit ILT population growth and to determine if management intervention is necessary and where. Given current knowledge, the largest sources of model uncertainty will be: (1) uncertainty in relationships between high flow events and subsequent sandbar characteristics and (2) uncertainty regarding the frequency of dispersal among population subunits. We recommend research strategies to reduce these uncertainties. PMID:24223295

  1. The role of mesocosm studies in ecological risk analysis

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Boyle, Terence P.; Fairchild, James F.

    1997-01-01

    Mesocosms have been primarily used as research tools for the evaluation of the fate and effects of xenobiotic chemicals at the population, community, and ecosystem levels of biological organization. This paper provides suggestions for future applications of mesocosm research. Attention should be given to the configuration of mesocosm parameters to explicitly study regional questions of ecological interest. The initial physical, chemical, and biological conditions within mesocosms should be considered as factors shaping the final results of experiments. Certain fundamental questions such as the ecological inertia and resilience of systems with different initial ecological properties should be addressed. Researchers should develop closer working relationships with mathematical modelers in linking computer models to the outcomes of mesocosm studies. Mesocosm tests, linked with models, could enable managers and regulators to forecast the regional consequences of chemicals released into the environment.

  2. Advancing Ecological Models to Compare Scale in Multi-Level Educational Change

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Woo, David James

    2016-01-01

    Education systems as units of analysis have been metaphorically likened to ecologies to model change. However, ecological models to date have been ineffective in modelling educational change that is multi-scale and occurs across multiple levels of an education system. Thus, this paper advances two innovative, ecological frameworks that improve on…

  3. Trends and missing parts in the study of movement ecology

    PubMed Central

    Holyoak, Marcel; Casagrandi, Renato; Nathan, Ran; Revilla, Eloy; Spiegel, Orr

    2008-01-01

    Movement is important to all organisms, and accordingly it is addressed in a huge number of papers in the literature. Of nearly 26,000 papers referring to movement, an estimated 34% focused on movement by measuring it or testing hypotheses about it. This enormous amount of information is difficult to review and highlights the need to assess the collective completeness of movement studies and identify gaps. We surveyed 1,000 randomly selected papers from 496 journals and compared the facets of movement studied with a suggested framework for movement ecology, consisting of internal state (motivation, physiology), motion and navigation capacities, and external factors (both the physical environment and living organisms), and links among these components. Most studies simply measured and described the movement of organisms without reference to ecological or internal factors, and the most frequently studied part of the framework was the link between external factors and motion capacity. Few studies looked at the effects on movement of navigation capacity, or internal state, and those were mainly from vertebrates. For invertebrates and plants most studies were at the population level, whereas more vertebrate studies were conducted at the individual level. Consideration of only population-level averages promulgates neglect of between-individual variation in movement, potentially hindering the study of factors controlling movement. Terminology was found to be inconsistent among taxa and subdisciplines. The gaps identified in coverage of movement studies highlight research areas that should be addressed to fully understand the ecology of movement. PMID:19060194

  4. A Single-Granule-Level Approach Reveals Ecological Heterogeneity in an Upflow Anaerobic Sludge Blanket Reactor

    PubMed Central

    Mei, Ran; Narihiro, Takashi; Bocher, Benjamin T. W.; Yamaguchi, Takashi; Liu, Wen-Tso

    2016-01-01

    Upflow anaerobic sludge blanket (UASB) reactor has served as an effective process to treat industrial wastewater such as purified terephthalic acid (PTA) wastewater. For optimal UASB performance, balanced ecological interactions between syntrophs, methanogens, and fermenters are critical. However, much of the interactions remain unclear because UASB have been studied at a “macro”-level perspective of the reactor ecosystem. In reality, such reactors are composed of a suite of granules, each forming individual micro-ecosystems treating wastewater. Thus, typical approaches may be oversimplifying the complexity of the microbial ecology and granular development. To identify critical microbial interactions at both macro- and micro- level ecosystem ecology, we perform community and network analyses on 300 PTA–degrading granules from a lab-scale UASB reactor and two full-scale reactors. Based on MiSeq-based 16S rRNA gene sequencing of individual granules, different granule-types co-exist in both full-scale reactors regardless of granule size and reactor sampling depth, suggesting that distinct microbial interactions occur in different granules throughout the reactor. In addition, we identify novel networks of syntrophic metabolic interactions in different granules, perhaps caused by distinct thermodynamic conditions. Moreover, unseen methanogenic relationships (e.g. “Candidatus Aminicenantes” and Methanosaeta) are observed in UASB reactors. In total, we discover unexpected microbial interactions in granular micro-ecosystems supporting UASB ecology and treatment through a unique single-granule level approach. PMID:27936088

  5. Ecological performance of red drum (Sciaenops ocellatus) larvae exposed to environmental levels of the insecticide malathion.

    PubMed

    Del Carmen Alvarez, Maria; Fuiman, Lee A

    2006-05-01

    Malathion is a highly soluble organophosphate insecticide that is widely used in agriculture and mosquito eradication campaigns. Fish species, such as red drum (Sciaenops ocellatus), that use seagrass beds as nursery areas could be affected by runoff waters contaminated with malathion. We exposed red drum larvae at the size they reach in estuarine nursery areas to environmentally realistic and sublethal levels of malathion (0, 1, and 10 microg/L). We evaluated the effects of such exposure on ecologically significant behaviors (routine swimming and predator evasion), growth, and resting metabolism. Malathion exposure to relatively low but ecologically realistic concentrations did not affect routine behavior, escape behavior, resting metabolic rate, or growth, indicating that reported environmental levels may be safe for young fishes. However, a recent substantial increase in the use of malathion may elevate surface-water concentrations to levels above those tested in the present study.

  6. Summary Report: Risk Assessment Forum Technical Workshop on Population-level Ecological Risk Assessment

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    2008 technical workshop regarding development of additional guidelines or best practices for planning, implementing and interpreting ecological risk assessments that involve population-level assessment endpoints.

  7. Screening level ecological risk assessment for phenols in surface water of the Taihu Lake.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Wenjue; Wang, Donghong; Xu, Xiaowei; Luo, Qian; Wang, Bingyi; Shan, Xiaoquan; Wang, Zijian

    2010-08-01

    A number of approaches have been proposed for screening level ecological risk assessment. In this paper, we first established a mass spectrum library including 50 phenols using retention time locking (RTL) technology and deconvolution reporting software (DRS). Distribution of phenols in surface water of the Taihu Lake was screened. Among the 22 identified phenols, 14 phenols were quantified. The concentrations of total phenols ranged 675.2-3346.1 ng L(-1). The distributions of ecological effect quotients (EEQs) of 14 phenols were characterized in terms of the exposure concentration distributions (ECDs) and species sensitivity distributions (SSDs). Those phenols with EEQs exceeding the threshold proposed by Water Environment Research Foundation of Alexandria were selected as priorities. As a result, 2-nitrophenol (2-NP), p-chloro-m-xylenol (PCMX) and pyrocatechol were determined as potential ecological risk stressors in surface water of the Taihu Lake. Results of the present study suggested that the proposed approach is feasible for the screening level ecological risk assessment.

  8. Generalizing ecological site concepts of the Colorado Plateau for landscape-level applications

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Duniway, Michael C.; Nauman, Travis; Johanson, Jamin K.; Green, Shane; Miller, Mark E.; Bestelmeyer, Brandon T.

    2016-01-01

    Numerous ecological site descriptions in the southern Utah portion of the Colorado Plateau can be difficult to navigate, so we held a workshop aimed at adding value and functionality to the current ecological site system.We created new groups of ecological sites and drafted state-and-transition models for these new groups.We were able to distill the current large number of ecological sites in the study area (ca. 150) into eight ecological site groups that capture important variability in ecosystem dynamics.Several inventory and monitoring programs and landscape scale planning actions will likely benefit from more generalized ecological site group concepts.

  9. Ecological risk assessments for watersheds: Lessons learned from case studies

    SciTech Connect

    Marcy, S.K.M.

    1994-12-31

    The USEPA Office of Water and Risk Assessment Forum are co-sponsoring the development of watershed level ecological risk assessments in Big Darby Creek, OH, Clinch River, VA, Middle Platte River Wetlands, NE, Snake River, ID, and Waquoit Bay Estuary, MA. The case studies are testing the Agency`s Framework for Ecological Risk Assessment at a watershed scale for multiple stressors. During case study development much has been learned about how to apply and modify the principles in the Framework to landscape scale risk assessments. Insights include how to select appropriate assessment endpoints to drive the risk assessment, how to effectively increase involvement by risk management teams, and provide decision opportunities for managers throughout development. The case studies demonstrate diverse ways to conduct watershed risk assessments, and illustrate the importance of multiple risk hypotheses in conceptual models addressing the combined and relative risk of chemical, physical and biological stressors. Issues the case studies highlight include the need for a process to determine when watershed risk assessments are appropriate and at what level of complexity they should be performed, how to increase the use of the ecological risk assessments in management decision-making and how to determine the best risk reduction strategy. An update on the watershed case studies will be provided and the insights and issues stated above, discussed.

  10. Evaluating area-level spatial clustering of Salmonella Enteritidis infections and their socioeconomic determinants in the greater Toronto area, Ontario, Canada (2007 – 2009): a retrospective population-based ecological study

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background There have been only a few region-level ecological studies conducted in Canada investigating enteric infections in humans. Our study objectives were to 1) assess the spatial clustering of Salmonella enterica serotype Enteritidis (S. Enteritidis) human infections in the Greater Toronto Area, and 2) identify underlying area-level associations between S. Enteritidis infection rates and socioeconomic status (SES) indicators that might explain the clustering of infections. Methods Retrospective data on S. Enteritidis infections from 2007 to 2009 were obtained from Ontario’s reportable disease surveillance database and were grouped at the forward sortation area (FSA) - level. A spatial scan statistic was employed to identify FSA-level spatial clusters of high infection rates. Negative binomial regression was used to identify FSA-level associations between S. Enteritidis infection rates and SES indicators obtained from the 2006 Census of Canada. Global Moran’s I statistic was used to evaluate the final model for residual spatial clustering. Results A spatial cluster that included nine neighbouring FSAs was identified in downtown Toronto. A significant positive curvilinear relationship was observed between S. Enteritidis infection rates and FSA-level average number of children at home per census family. Areas with high and areas with low average median family income had higher infection rates than FSAs with medium average median family income. Areas with a high proportion of visible minority population had lower infection rates than FSAs with a medium proportion of visible minority population. The Moran’s I statistic was not significant, indicating that no residual spatial autocorrelation was present after accounting for the SES variables in the final model. Conclusions Our study demonstrated that FSAs with high and low average median family income, medium proportion of visible minority population, and high average number of children at home per census

  11. Towards quantitative ecological risk assessment of elevated carbon dioxide levels in the marine environment.

    PubMed

    de Vries, Pepijn; Tamis, Jacqueline E; Foekema, Edwin M; Klok, Chris; Murk, Albertinka J

    2013-08-30

    The environmental impact of elevated carbon dioxide (CO2) levels has become of more interest in recent years. This, in relation to globally rising CO2 levels and related considerations of geological CO2 storage as a mitigating measure. In the present study effect data from literature were collected in order to conduct a marine ecological risk assessment of elevated CO2 levels, using a Species Sensitivity Distribution (SSD). It became evident that information currently available from the literature is mostly insufficient for such a quantitative approach. Most studies focus on effects of expected future CO2 levels, testing only one or two elevated concentrations. A full dose-response relationship, a uniform measure of exposure, and standardized test protocols are essential for conducting a proper quantitative risk assessment of elevated CO2 levels. Improvements are proposed to make future tests more valuable and usable for quantitative risk assessment.

  12. Guidance Manual for Conducting Screening Level Ecological Risk Assessments at the INEL

    SciTech Connect

    R. L. VanHorn; N. L. Hampton; R. C. Morris

    1995-06-01

    This document presents reference material for conducting screening level ecological risk assessments (SLERAs)for the waste area groups (WAGs) at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory. Included in this document are discussions of the objectives of and processes for conducting SLERAs. The Environmental Protection Agency ecological risk assessment framework is closely followed. Guidance for site characterization, stressor characterization, ecological effects, pathways of contaminant migration, the conceptual site model, assessment endpoints, measurement endpoints, analysis guidance, and risk characterization are included.

  13. Ecological feasibility studies in restoration decision making.

    PubMed

    Hopfensperger, Kristine N; Engelhardt, Katharina A M; Seagle, Steven W

    2007-06-01

    The restoration of degraded systems is essential for maintaining the provision of valuable ecosystem services, including the maintenance of aesthetic values. However, restoration projects often fail to reach desired goals for a variety of ecologic, financial, and social reasons. Feasibility studies that evaluate whether a restoration effort should even be attempted can enhance restoration success by highlighting potential pitfalls and gaps in knowledge before the design phase of a restoration. Feasibility studies also can bring stakeholders together before a restoration project is designed to discuss potential disagreements. For these reasons, a feasibility study was conducted to evaluate the efficacy of restoring a tidal freshwater marsh in the Potomac River near Alexandria, Virginia. The study focused on science rather than engineering questions, and thus differed in approach from other feasibility studies that are mostly engineering driven. The authors report the framework they used to conduct a feasibility study to inform other potential restoration projects with similar goals. The seven steps of the framework encompass (1) initiation of a feasibility study, (2) compilation of existing data, (3) collection of current site information, (4) examination of case studies, (5) synthesis of information in a handbook, (6) meeting with selected stakeholders, and (7) evaluation of meeting outcomes. By conducting a feasibility study using the seven-step framework, the authors set the stage for conducting future compliance studies and enhancing the chance of a successful restoration.

  14. Organism and population-level ecological models for ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Ecological risk assessment typically focuses on animal populations as endpoints for regulatory ecotoxicology. Scientists at USEPA are developing models for animal populations exposed to a wide range of chemicals from pesticides to emerging contaminants. Modeled taxa include aquatic and terrestrial invertebrates, fish, amphibians, and birds, and employ a wide range of methods, from matrix-based projection models to mechanistic bioenergetics models and spatially explicit population models. not applicable

  15. Cascading ecological effects of low-level phosphorus enrichment in the Florida Everglades

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gaiser, E.E.; Trexler, J.C.; Richards, J.H.; Childers, D.L.; Lee, D.; Edwards, A.L.; Scinto, L.J.; Jayachandran, K.; Noe, G.B.; Jones, R.D.

    2005-01-01

    Few studies have examined long-term ecological effects of sustained low-level nutrient enhancement on wetland biota. To determine sustained effects of phosphorus (P) addition on Everglades marshes we added P at low levels (5, 15, and 30 ??g L-1 above ambient) for 5 yr to triplicate 100-m flow-through channels in pristine marsh. A cascade of ecological responses occurred in similar sequence among treatments. Although the rate of change increased with dosing level, treatments converged to similar enriched endpoints, characterized most notably by a doubling of plant biomass and elimination of native, calcareous periphyton mats. The full sequence of biological changes occurred without an increase in water total P concentration, which remained near ambient levels until Year 5. This study indicates that Everglades marshes have a near-zero assimilative capacity for P without a state change, that ecosystem responses to enrichment accumulate over time, and that downstream P transport mainly occurs through biota rather than the water column.

  16. Field Ecology Studies in the Rocky Mountains.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Robertson, Philip A.

    1978-01-01

    Describes a six-week field plant ecology course in Montana which is offered by the Botany Department at Southern Illinois University. The goals of the course, how it is taught, and student evaluation are also presented. (HM)

  17. Community Health Workers promoting physical activity: Targeting multiple levels of the Social Ecological Model

    PubMed Central

    Haughton, Jessica; Ayala, Guadalupe X.; Burke, Kari Herzog; Elder, John P.; Montañez, Jacqueline; Arredondo, Elva M.

    2015-01-01

    The effectiveness of Community Health Workers (CHWs) as health educators and health promoters among Latino populations is widely recognized. The Affordable Care Act created important opportunities to increase the role of CHWs in preventive health. This article describes the implementation of CHW-led, culturally specific, faith-based program to increase physical activity (PA) among churchgoing Latinas. The current study augments previous research by describing the recruitment, selection, training, and evaluation of CHWs for a PA intervention targeting multiple levels of the Social Ecological Model. PMID:26280587

  18. Calculating background levels for ecological risk parameters in toxic harbor sediment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Leadon, C.J.; McDonnell, T.R.; Lear, J.; Barclift, D.

    2007-01-01

    Establishing background levels for biological parameters is necessary in assessing the ecological risks from harbor sediment contaminated with toxic chemicals. For chemicals in sediment, the term contaminated is defined as having concentrations above background and significant human health or ecological risk levels. For biological parameters, a site could be considered contaminated if levels of the parameter are either more or less than the background level, depending on the specific parameter. Biological parameters can include tissue chemical concentrations in ecological receptors, bioassay responses, bioaccumulation levels, and benthic community metrics. Chemical parameters can include sediment concentrations of a variety of potentially toxic chemicals. Indirectly, contaminated harbor sediment can impact shellfish, fish, birds, and marine mammals, and human populations. This paper summarizes the methods used to define background levels for chemical and biological parameters from a survey of ecological risk investigations of marine harbor sediment at California Navy bases. Background levels for regional biological indices used to quantify ecological risks for benthic communities are also described. Generally, background stations are positioned in relatively clean areas exhibiting the same physical and general chemical characteristics as nearby areas with contaminated harbor sediment. The number of background stations and the number of sample replicates per background station depend on the statistical design of the sediment ecological risk investigation, developed through the data quality objective (DQO) process. Biological data from the background stations can be compared to data from a contaminated site by using minimum or maximum background levels or comparative statistics. In Navy ecological risk assessments (ERA's), calculated background levels and appropriate ecological risk screening criteria are used to identify sampling stations and sites with contaminated

  19. Ecology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Audubon Society, New York, NY.

    This set of teaching aids consists of nine Audubon Nature Bulletins, providing teachers and students with informational reading on various ecological topics. The bulletins have these titles: Schoolyard Laboratories, Owls and Predators, The Forest Community, Life in Freshwater Marshes, Camouflage in the Animal World, Life in the Desert, The…

  20. Community-level demographic consequences of urbanization: an ecological network approach.

    PubMed

    Rodewald, Amanda D; Rohr, Rudolf P; Fortuna, Miguel A; Bascompte, Jordi

    2014-11-01

    Ecological networks are known to influence ecosystem attributes, but we poorly understand how interspecific network structure affect population demography of multiple species, particularly for vertebrates. Establishing the link between network structure and demography is at the crux of being able to use networks to understand population dynamics and to inform conservation. We addressed the critical but unanswered question, does network structure explain demographic consequences of urbanization? We studied 141 ecological networks representing interactions between plants and nesting birds in forests across an urbanization gradient in Ohio, USA, from 2001 to 2011. Nest predators were identified by video-recording nests and surveyed from 2004 to 2011. As landscapes urbanized, bird-plant networks were more nested, less compartmentalized and dominated by strong interactions between a few species (i.e. low evenness). Evenness of interaction strengths promoted avian nest survival, and evenness explained demography better than urbanization, level of invasion, numbers of predators or other qualitative network metrics. Highly uneven networks had approximately half the nesting success as the most even networks. Thus, nest survival reflected how urbanization altered species interactions, particularly with respect to how nest placement affected search efficiency of predators. The demographic effects of urbanization were not direct, but were filtered through bird-plant networks. This study illustrates how network structure can influence demography at the community level and further, that knowledge of species interactions and a network approach may be requisite to understanding demographic responses to environmental change.

  1. Host-parasitoid spatial ecology: a plea for a landscape-level synthesis.

    PubMed

    Cronin, James T; Reeve, John D

    2005-11-07

    A growing body of literature points to a large-scale research approach as essential for understanding population and community ecology. Many of our advances regarding the spatial ecology of predators and prey can be attributed to research with insect parasitoids and their hosts. In this review, we focus on the progress that has been made in the study of the movement and population dynamics of hosts and their parasitoids in heterogeneous landscapes, and how this research approach may be beneficial to pest management programs. To date, few studies have quantified prey and predator rates and ranges of dispersal and population dynamics at the patch level--the minimum of information needed to characterize population structure. From host-parasitoid studies with sufficient data, it is clear that the spatial scale of dispersal can differ significantly between a prey and its predators, local prey extinctions can be attributed to predators and predator extinction risk at the patch level often exceeds that of the prey. It is also evident that populations can be organized as a single, highly connected (patchy) population or as semi-independent extinction-prone local populations that collectively form a persistent metapopulation. A prey and its predators can also differ in population structure. At the landscape level, agricultural studies indicate that predator effects on its prey often spill over between the crop and surrounding area (matrix) and can depend strongly on landscape structure (e.g. the proportion of suitable habitat) at scales extending well beyond the crop margins. In light of existing empirical data, predator-prey models are typically spatially unrealistic, lacking important details on boundary responses and movement behaviour within and among patches. The tools exist for conducting empirical and theoretical research at the landscape level and we hope that this review calls attention to fertile areas for future exploration.

  2. PROJECTING POPULATION-LEVEL RESPONSE OF PURPLE SEA URCHINS TO LEAD CONTAMINATION FOR AN ESTUARINE ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    As part of an ecological risk assessment case study at the Portsmouth naval Shipyard (PNS), Kittery, Maine, USA, the population level effects of lead exposure to purple sea urchin, Arbacia punctulata, were investigated using a stage-classified matrix population model. The model d...

  3. Defining Acceptable Levels for Ecological Indicators: An Approach for Considering Social Values

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smyth, Robyn L.; Watzin, Mary C.; Manning, Robert E.

    2007-03-01

    Ecological indicators can facilitate an adaptive management approach, but only if acceptable levels for those indicators have been defined so that the data collected can be interpreted. Because acceptable levels are an expression of the desired state of the ecosystem, the process of establishing acceptable levels should incorporate not just ecological understanding but also societal values. The goal of this research was to explore an approach for defining acceptable levels of ecological indicators that explicitly considers social perspectives and values. We used a set of eight indicators that were related to issues of concern in the Lake Champlain Basin. Our approach was based on normative theory. Using a stakeholder survey, we measured respondent normative evaluations of varying levels of our indicators. Aggregated social norm curves were used to determine the level at which indicator values shifted from acceptable to unacceptable conditions. For seven of the eight indicators, clear preferences were interpretable from these norm curves. For example, closures of public beaches because of bacterial contamination and days of intense algae bloom went from acceptable to unacceptable at 7-10 days in a summer season. Survey respondents also indicated that the number of fish caught from Lake Champlain that could be safely consumed each month was unacceptably low and the number of streams draining into the lake that were impaired by storm water was unacceptably high. If indicators that translate ecological conditions into social consequences are carefully selected, we believe the normative approach has considerable merit for defining acceptable levels of valued ecological system components.

  4. Ecological nanotoxicology: integrating nanomaterial hazard considerations across the subcellular, population, community, and ecosystems levels.

    PubMed

    Holden, Patricia A; Nisbet, Roger M; Lenihan, Hunter S; Miller, Robert J; Cherr, Gary N; Schimel, Joshua P; Gardea-Torresdey, Jorge L

    2013-03-19

    Research into the health and environmental safety of nanotechnology has seriously lagged behind its emergence in industry. While humans have often adopted synthetic chemicals without considering ancillary consequences, the lessons learned from worldwide pollution should motivate making nanotechnology compatible with environmental concerns. Researchers and policymakers need to understand exposure and harm of engineered nanomaterials (ENMs), currently nanotechnology's main products, to influence the ENM industry toward sustainable growth. Yet, how should research proceed? Standard toxicity testing anchored in single-organism, dose-response characterizations does not adequately represent real-world exposure and receptor scenarios and their complexities. Our approach is different: it derives from ecology, the study of organisms' interactions with each other and their environments. Our approach involves the characterization of ENMs and the mechanistic assessment of their property-based effects. Using high throughput/content screening (HTS/HCS) with cells or environmentally-relevant organisms, we measure the effects of ENMs on a subcellular or population level. We then relate those effects to mechanisms within dynamic energy budget (DEB) models of growth and reproduction. We reconcile DEB model predictions with experimental data on organism and population responses. Finally, we use microcosm studies to measure the potential for community- or ecosystem-level effects by ENMs that are likely to be produced in large quantities and for which either HTS/HCS or DEB modeling suggest their potential to harm populations and ecosystems. Our approach accounts for ecological interactions across scales, from within organisms to whole ecosystems. Organismal ENM effects, if propagated through populations, can alter communities comprising multiple populations (e.g., plant, fish, bacteria) within food webs. Altered communities can change ecosystem services: processes that cycle carbon

  5. Ecological Literacy through Critical/Place-Based Pedagogy in the Environmental Studies Program at a Small Liberal Arts College

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Beeman-Cadwallader, Nicole

    2014-01-01

    Few studies have critically examined pedagogical practices for ecological literacy at the tertiary level (Adomssent, Godemann, Michelsen, 2007). The purpose of this study is to critically examine how students and faculty in the Environmental Studies/Science programs at Trueblood College pursue ecological literacy through place-based pedagogy. Two…

  6. Ecological correlates of cortisol levels in two bat species with contrasting feeding habits.

    PubMed

    Lewanzik, Daniel; Kelm, Detlev H; Greiner, Sabine; Dehnhard, Martin; Voigt, Christian C

    2012-05-15

    The immediate release of adrenal glucocorticoids can be crucial for an animal's survival when facing a stressor, but constantly elevated or exceptionally high glucocorticoid levels are usually detrimental for health. Although baseline and maximal secretion of glucocorticoids are regulated within narrow ranges within species, plasma glucocorticoid levels vary largely across vertebrates. We asked what ecological factors affect baseline plasma cortisol levels (CortI) and maximum levels (CortMax) following a physiological challenge through administration of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH). Specifically, we studied whether seasonal fluctuations in food abundance correlate with the capacity of cortisol increases in two phyllostomid bat species with contrasting feeding habits: the sanguinivorous vampire bat (Desmodus rotundus) and the frugivorous short-tailed fruit bat (Carollia perspicillata). Both species coexist in habitats with various levels of seasonality (dry and rainforest). On a seasonal basis, resource abundance is more stable for vampire than for fruit bats, but previous studies suggested that daily foraging success may vary more for vampire than for fruit bats. CortI and CortMax varied seasonally in C. perspicillata from dry and rainforests, with the exception of CortMax in rainforest bats. Although we expected food availability to be stable year-round for vampire bats, we found CortI and CortMax of vampires to be higher during the rainy season than during the dry season. Also, we found CortMax to be higher in vampires from the rainforest than in those from the dry forest. CortMax of vampires were among the highest measured for a free-ranging mammal; a pattern that could be related to the species' vulnerability to starvation. We conclude that food availability modulates cortisol levels in free-ranging species that face seasonally fluctuating resources; in species, however, that benefit from food which is constantly abundant, other factors than food may

  7. Levels and ecological risk assessment of metals in soils from a typical e-waste recycling region in southeast China.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Weituo; Ding, Lei; Gu, Xiaowen; Luo, Jie; Liu, Yunlang; Guo, Li; Shi, Yi; Huang, Ting; Cheng, Shenggao

    2015-11-01

    Due to the high threat to human health and the ecosystem from metals, the levels and distribution of As, Hg, Cr, Co, Ni, Cu, Zn, Cd, Pb, Mn, V, Sn, Sb, Li and Be in various layers of soil from an e-waste recycling area in Guiyu, China were investigated. The extent of pollution from the metals in soil was assessed using enrichment factors (EFs) and the Nemerow pollution index (P N ). To determine the metals' integrated potential ecological risks, the potential ecological risk index (RI) was chosen. The concentrations of Hg, Ni, Cu, Cd, Pb, Sn and Sb were mainly enriched in the topsoil. EF values (2-5) of the elements Hg, Co, Ni, Zn, Sn, Li and Be revealed their moderate enrichment status in the topsoil, derived from e-waste recycling activities. P N presented a decreasing trend in different layers in the order topsoil (0-20 cm) > deep soil (100-150 cm) > middle soil (50-100 cm) > shallow soil (20-50 cm). With higher potential ecological risk factor (E(i)), Hg and Cd are the main contributors to the potential ecological risk. With respect to the RI, all the values in soil from the study area exceeded 300, especially for the soil at sites S2, S4, S5, S7 and S8, where RI was greater than 600. Therefore, immediate remediation of the contaminated soil is necessary to prevent the release of metals and potential ecological harm.

  8. Study of tourist motivation to Guangzhou urban ecological parks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Min; Wang, Fengtang

    2011-12-01

    Based on the push - pull theory, this article show the empirical studies of tourists' travel motivation to Guangzhou Ecological Park. We identified four push factors and three pull factors which are of the potential features of travel motivation, and on this basis, using analysis of variance to further test the significant differences of push and pull factors in the demographic characteristics of different groups. The conclusion has a certain reference value to the Ecological Park in Guangzhou to attract tourists.

  9. Study of tourist motivation to Guangzhou urban ecological parks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Min; Wang, Fengtang

    2012-01-01

    Based on the push - pull theory, this article show the empirical studies of tourists' travel motivation to Guangzhou Ecological Park. We identified four push factors and three pull factors which are of the potential features of travel motivation, and on this basis, using analysis of variance to further test the significant differences of push and pull factors in the demographic characteristics of different groups. The conclusion has a certain reference value to the Ecological Park in Guangzhou to attract tourists.

  10. [Preliminary study on ecological footprint in Bashang region of Zhangjiakou city].

    PubMed

    Hu, Mengchun; Zhang, Yongchun; Miao, Xubo; Shen, Weishou; Ma, Ronghua

    2003-02-01

    The ecological footprint and ecological carrying capacity in Bashang region of Zhangjiakou city were calculated with the statistical data of the region in 1999. Based on calculation, the balance between ecological footprint and ecological carrying capacity was analyzed, and the threshold values of the ecological carrying capacity and population capacity of the region at the current production level were determined. Strategies on reducing ecological deficit in this region were also brought forward.

  11. DEVELOPMENT OF TOXICITY REFERENCE VALUES FOR ECOLOGICAL SOIL SCREENING LEVELS (ECO-SSLS) FOR TERRESTRIAL WILDLIFE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecological Soil Screening Levels (Eco-SSLs) protective of terrestrial wildlife were developed by the USEPA Superfund. The wildlife Eco-SSL is the soil contaminant concentration where the Effect Dose (TRV) and Exposure Dose are equal (amount of contaminant in the diet that is take...

  12. DEVELOPMENT OF ECOLOGICAL SOIL SCREENING LEVELS FOR SOIL INVERTEBRATES AND PLANTS FROM PEER-REVIEWED LITERATURE

    EPA Science Inventory

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, as part of a collaborative effort among government and industry representatives, is developing Ecologic Soil Screening Levels (Eco-SSLs) for approximately 25 of the most common pollutants found at Superfund sites. As part of this effort, ...

  13. Umweltverschmutzung. German Ecology Packet: Resource Units and Materials for German Classes at All Levels.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Archer, Julie; And Others

    Supplementary resource materials for use in upper level secondary school German classes are presented in this text. Teachers who are seeking new content and are willing to adapt these instructional materials on ecology in Germany will find three self-contained units on: The Plight of the Polar Bear, Polluted Swimming Pools in Germany, and Dead…

  14. Hierarchical approaches to the study of ecological process and pattern

    SciTech Connect

    Waterhouse, J.C.; Farrell, M.P.; DeAngelis, D.L.

    1986-08-01

    An approach based on hierarchy theory is applied to problems involving the relationships between levels of analysis in ecology. The first problem involves ''emergence'' - the inability to predict the behavior of the whole from its parts. To analyze emergence, a hierarchical conceptual model is developed, which is then used to clarify several controversies involving emergence and to help assess the benefits and pitfalls of higher level analyses. If a taxonomic hierarchy can be assumed to reflect a hierarchy of ecological similarity of species, then higher taxonomic levels may be useful in detecting larger scale ecological patterns. Patterns shown by specific and generic level binary similarity coefficients are compared for chironomid species data from a polluted Ohio stream. The ecological similarity of congenerics is assessed using the trend in the species:genus ratio along the pollution gradient. A hierarchical approach assumes that a hierarchy of pattern reflects a hierarchy of process. Simulation models of New England and Australian rocky intertidal communities were used to show how this assumption may be violated. The model results indicate that three characteristics of the Australian rocky intertidal community may allow small-scale ''stochastic'' processes to have larger scale effects than in the New England community.

  15. Reproductive ecology of tree swallows (Tachycineta bicolor) with high levels of polychlorinated biphenyl contamination

    SciTech Connect

    McCarty, J.P.; Secord, A.L.

    1999-07-01

    Tree swallows(Tachycineta bicolor) breeding along the Hudson River forage extensively on PCB-contaminated insects that emerge from the river. The authors studied the reproductive ecology and behavior of tree swallows breeding at several sites along the Hudson River. Related work has shown that PCB levels in both eggs and chicks were among the highest ever reported in this species, with concentrations comparable to those found in aquatic organisms in the Hudson River. In 1994, reproductive success at PCB-contaminated sites was significantly impaired relative to other sites in New York. Reduced reproductive success was largely due to high levels of nest abandonment during incubation and reduced hatchability of eggs. In 1995, reproductive output was normal, but higher than expected rates of abandonment and supernormal clutches persisted. Growth and development of nestlings was not significantly impaired. Given the levels of contamination in this population, the success of most Hudson River tree swallows reinforces the importance of understanding interspecific differences in the effects of contaminants.

  16. Occam's shadow: levels of analysis in evolutionary ecology - where to next?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cooch, E.G.; Cam, E.; Link, W.A.

    2002-01-01

    Evolutionary ecology is the study of evolutionary processes, and the ecological conditions that influence them. A fundamental paradigm underlying the study of evolution is natural selection. Although there are a variety of operational definitions for natural selection in the literature, perhaps the most general one is that which characterizes selection as the process whereby heritable variation in fitness associated with variation in one or more phenotypic traits leads to intergenerational change in the frequency distribution of those traits. The past 20 years have witnessed a marked increase in the precision and reliability of our ability to estimate one or more components of fitness and characterize natural selection in wild populations, owing particularly to significant advances in methods for analysis of data from marked individuals. In this paper, we focus on several issues that we believe are important considerations for the application and development of these methods in the context of addressing questions in evolutionary ecology. First, our traditional approach to estimation often rests upon analysis of aggregates of individuals, which in the wild may reflect increasingly non-random (selected) samples with respect to the trait(s) of interest. In some cases, analysis at the aggregate level, rather than the individual level, may obscure important patterns. While there are a growing number of analytical tools available to estimate parameters at the individual level, and which can cope (to varying degrees) with progressive selection of the sample, the advent of new methods does not reduce the need to consider carefully the appropriate level of analysis in the first place. Estimation should be motivated a priori by strong theoretical analysis. Doing so provides clear guidance, in terms of both (i) assisting in the identification of realistic and meaningful models to include in the candidate model set, and (ii) providing the appropriate context under which the

  17. Ecological feedbacks can reduce population-level efficacy of wildlife fertility control

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ransom, Jason I.; Powers, Jenny G.; Hobbs, N. Thompson; Baker, Dan L.

    2014-01-01

    1. Anthropogenic stress on natural systems, particularly the fragmentation of landscapes and the extirpation of predators from food webs, has intensified the need to regulate abundance of wildlife populations with management. Controlling population growth using fertility control has been considered for almost four decades, but nearly all research has focused on understanding effects of fertility control agents on individual animals. Questions about the efficacy of fertility control as a way to control populations remain largely unanswered. 2. Collateral consequences of contraception can produce unexpected changes in birth rates, survival, immigration and emigration that may reduce the effectiveness of regulating animal abundance. The magnitude and frequency of such effects vary with species-specific social and reproductive systems, as well as connectivity of populations. Developing models that incorporate static demographic parameters from populations not controlled by contraception may bias predictions of fertility control efficacy. 3. Many population-level studies demonstrate that changes in survival and immigration induced by fertility control can compensate for the reduction in births caused by contraception. The most successful cases of regulating populations using fertility control come from applications of contraceptives to small, closed populations of gregarious and easily accessed species. 4. Fertility control can result in artificial selection pressures on the population and may lead to long-term unintentional genetic consequences. The magnitude of such selection is dependent on individual heritability and behavioural traits, as well as environmental variation. 5. Synthesis and applications. Understanding species' life-history strategies, biology, behavioural ecology and ecological context is critical to developing realistic expectations of regulating populations using fertility control. Before time, effort and funding are invested in wildlife

  18. Ecological feedbacks can reduce population-level efficacy of wildlife fertility control.

    PubMed

    Ransom, Jason I; Powers, Jenny G; Thompson Hobbs, N; Baker, Dan L

    2014-02-01

    Anthropogenic stress on natural systems, particularly the fragmentation of landscapes and the extirpation of predators from food webs, has intensified the need to regulate abundance of wildlife populations with management. Controlling population growth using fertility control has been considered for almost four decades, but nearly all research has focused on understanding effects of fertility control agents on individual animals. Questions about the efficacy of fertility control as a way to control populations remain largely unanswered.Collateral consequences of contraception can produce unexpected changes in birth rates, survival, immigration and emigration that may reduce the effectiveness of regulating animal abundance. The magnitude and frequency of such effects vary with species-specific social and reproductive systems, as well as connectivity of populations. Developing models that incorporate static demographic parameters from populations not controlled by contraception may bias predictions of fertility control efficacy.Many population-level studies demonstrate that changes in survival and immigration induced by fertility control can compensate for the reduction in births caused by contraception. The most successful cases of regulating populations using fertility control come from applications of contraceptives to small, closed populations of gregarious and easily accessed species.Fertility control can result in artificial selection pressures on the population and may lead to long-term unintentional genetic consequences. The magnitude of such selection is dependent on individual heritability and behavioural traits, as well as environmental variation.Synthesis and applications. Understanding species' life-history strategies, biology, behavioural ecology and ecological context is critical to developing realistic expectations of regulating populations using fertility control. Before time, effort and funding are invested in wildlife contraception, managers may

  19. Phylogeny, Seed Trait, and Ecological Correlates of Seed Germination at the Community Level in a Degraded Sandy Grassland

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Zhengning; Wang, Lixin; Liu, Zhimin; Li, Yanjuan; Liu, Qingqing; Liu, Bo

    2016-01-01

    Seed germination strongly affects plant population growth and persistence, and it can be dramatically influenced by phylogeny, seed traits, and ecological factors. In this study, we examined the relationships among seed mass, seed shape, and germination percentage (GP), and assessed the extent to which phylogeny, seed traits (seed mass, shape, and color) and ecological factors (ecotype, life form, adult longevity, dispersal type, and onset of flowering) influence GP at the community level. All analyses were conducted on the log-transformed values of seed mass and arcsine square root-transformed values of GP. We found that seed mass and GP were significantly negatively correlated, whereas seed shape and GP were significantly positively correlated. The three major factors contributing to differences in GP were phylogeny, dispersal type, and seed shape (explained 5.8, 4.9, and 3.1% of the interspecific variations independently, respectively), but GP also influenced by seed mass and onset of flowering. Thus, GP was constrained not only by phylogeny but also by seed traits and ecological factors. These results indicated that GP is shaped by short-term selective pressures, and long-term phylogenetic constrains. We suggest that correlates of phylogeny, seed traits, and ecology should be taken into account in comparative studies on seed germination strategies. PMID:27799934

  20. Ecologic studies of rodent reservoirs: their relevance for human health.

    PubMed Central

    Mills, J. N.; Childs, J. E.

    1998-01-01

    Within the past few years, the number of "new" human diseases associated with small-mammal reservoirs has increased dramatically, stimulating renewed interest in reservoir ecology research. A consistent, integrative approach to such research allows direct comparisons between studies, contributes to the efficient use of resources and data, and increases investigator safety. We outline steps directed toward understanding vertebrate host ecology as it relates to human disease and illustrate the relevance of each step by using examples from studies of hosts associated with rodent-borne hemorrhagic fever viruses. PMID:9866729

  1. A Novel Integrated Ecological Model for the study of Sustainability

    EPA Science Inventory

    In recent years, there has been a growing interest among various sections of the society in the study of sustainability. Recently, a generalized mathematical model depicting a combined economic-ecological-social system has been proposed to help in the formal study of sustainabili...

  2. Landowners' Perspectives on Coordinated, Landscape-Level Invasive Species Control: The Role of Social and Ecological Context

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niemiec, Rebecca M.; Pech, Roger P.; Norbury, Grant L.; Byrom, Andrea E.

    2017-03-01

    To achieve biodiversity gains, landowner engagement in coordinated invasive species control programs across private lands is needed. Understanding landowners' perspectives toward such coordinated control efforts is crucial to facilitating engagement. We conducted in person and mail surveys of 68 landowners in and adjacent to the area of a proposed invasive predator control program in New Zealand. We find that, similar to previous studies, landowners consider the potential socioeconomic and ecological benefits of invasive species control and express a strong desire to enhance native biodiversity. However, we also find that landowners take into account the complexity of the local social and ecological context in which a program will unfold in three ways: they consider (1) the level of contribution by other landowners and urban residents who are benefiting from collective control efforts; (2) the potential for the program to upset the local "ecological balance", leading to increases in other pests; and (3) the probability that the program will be successful given the likelihood of others participating and control tactics being effective. We suggest that managers of coordinated invasive species control efforts may benefit from devoting time and resources toward addressing beliefs about social and ecological context, rather than solely providing financial subsidies and information about control tactics or the impacts of invasive species.

  3. Landowners' Perspectives on Coordinated, Landscape-Level Invasive Species Control: The Role of Social and Ecological Context.

    PubMed

    Niemiec, Rebecca M; Pech, Roger P; Norbury, Grant L; Byrom, Andrea E

    2017-03-01

    To achieve biodiversity gains, landowner engagement in coordinated invasive species control programs across private lands is needed. Understanding landowners' perspectives toward such coordinated control efforts is crucial to facilitating engagement. We conducted in person and mail surveys of 68 landowners in and adjacent to the area of a proposed invasive predator control program in New Zealand. We find that, similar to previous studies, landowners consider the potential socioeconomic and ecological benefits of invasive species control and express a strong desire to enhance native biodiversity. However, we also find that landowners take into account the complexity of the local social and ecological context in which a program will unfold in three ways: they consider (1) the level of contribution by other landowners and urban residents who are benefiting from collective control efforts; (2) the potential for the program to upset the local "ecological balance", leading to increases in other pests; and (3) the probability that the program will be successful given the likelihood of others participating and control tactics being effective. We suggest that managers of coordinated invasive species control efforts may benefit from devoting time and resources toward addressing beliefs about social and ecological context, rather than solely providing financial subsidies and information about control tactics or the impacts of invasive species.

  4. Ecologically relevant geomorphic attributes of streams are impaired by even low levels of watershed effective imperviousness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vietz, Geoff J.; Sammonds, Michael J.; Walsh, Christopher J.; Fletcher, Tim D.; Rutherfurd, Ian D.; Stewardson, Michael J.

    2014-02-01

    Urbanization almost inevitably results in changes to stream morphology. Understanding the mechanisms for such impacts is a prerequisite to minimizing stream degradation and achieving restoration goals. However, investigations of urban-induced changes to stream morphology typically use indicators of watershed urbanization that may not adequately represent degrading mechanisms and commonly focus on geomorphic attributes such as channel dimensions that may be of little significance to the ecological goals for restoration. We address these shortcomings by testing if a measure characterizing urban stormwater drainage system connections to streams (effective imperviousness, EI) is a better predictor of change to ecologically relevant geomorphic attributes than a more general measure of urban density (total imperviousness, TI). We test this for 17 sites in independent watersheds across a gradient of urbanization. We found that EI was a better predictor of all geomorphic variables tested than was TI. Bank instability was positively correlated with EI, while width/depth (a measure of channel incision), bedload sediment depth, and frequency of bars, benches, and large wood were negatively correlated. Large changes in all geomorphic variables were detected at very low levels of EI (< 2-3%). Excess urban stormwater runoff, as represented by EI, drives geomorphic change in urban streams, highlighting the dominant role of the stormwater drainage system in efficiently transferring stormwater runoff from impervious surfaces to the stream, as found for ecological indicators. It is likely that geomorphic condition of streams in urbanizing watersheds, particularly those attributes of ecological relevance, can only be maintained if excess urban stormwater flows are kept out of streams through retention and harvesting. The extent to which EI can be reduced within urban and urbanizing watersheds, through techniques such as distributed stormwater harvesting and infiltration, and the

  5. Human Ecology. Study Guide and Course Outline.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zaki, Gamal

    An inservice course offered to elementary and secondary teachers and other concerned citizens in Rhode Island was presented in fifteen television programs. This study guide includes a description of the fifteen sessions. For each there is given a brief introduction and summary, an outline, questions for further study, and a bibliography of…

  6. [Stable isotopes of carbon and nitrogen in soil ecological studies].

    PubMed

    Tiunov, A V

    2007-01-01

    The development of stable isotope techniques is one of the main methodological advances in ecology of the last decades of the 20th century. Many biogeochemical processes are accompanied by changes in the ratio between stable isotopes of carbon and nitrogen (12C/13C and 14N/15N), which allows different ecosystem components and different ecosystems to be distinguished by their isotopic composition. Analysis of isotopic composition makes it possible to trace matter and energy flows through biological systems and to evaluate the rate of many ecological processes. The main concepts and methods of stable isotope ecology and patterns of stable isotope fractionation during organic matter decomposition are considered with special emphasis on the fractionation of isotopes in food chains and the use of stable isotope studies of trophic relationships between soil animals in the field.

  7. Integration of the Problem of Medical Ecology on the Level of the Highly Urbanized Region

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rozenberg, Gennadiy S.; Lazareva, Natalya V.; Simonov, Yury V.; Lifirenko, Natalya G.; Sarapultseva, Lilija A.

    2016-01-01

    The urgency of the analyzed issue is due to the study of the basic issues of medical ecology: the dynamics of demographic indicators, the correlation of somatic and reproductive public health, depending on the influence of physical factors of the urban environment on public health on the basis of medical and geographic mapping. The article aims at…

  8. Ecological study of Vibrio cholerae in Vellore.

    PubMed Central

    Jesudason, M. V.; Balaji, V.; Mukundan, U.; Thomson, C. J.

    2000-01-01

    Vellore is endemic for cholera due to Vibrio cholerae O1 and O139. In a previous study the prevalence of Vibrio cholerae in drinking water, lakes and sewage outfalls in a single 2-months period in Vellore, India was determined. In addition water samples from three sites were also tested for the presence of V. cholerae O1 and O139 by fluorescent antibody staining. This follow on study has examined how the environmental distribution of V. cholerae at the same sites alters over a 12-month period and the relationship to the clinical pattern of cholera in Vellore. Samples of water were collected from fixed sites at three water bodies each month between April 1997 and March 1998. Bacteria isolated from samples were identified by standard biochemical tests and isolated strains of V. cholerae tested for their ability to agglutinate O1 and O139 antisera. Samples were also tested for the presence of V. cholerae O1 and O139 by fluorescent antibody staining. The clinical isolation rate of V. cholerae in Vellore, maximum temperature and rainfall were also studied. The results demonstrate the presence in the environment of viable but non-cultivable (VNC) V. cholerae in 10 of 12 months of the study year as well as their viability. Their prevalence in the environment also correlated with the isolation of these pathogens from clinical samples over the same study period. PMID:10813143

  9. Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) in Studies of Substance Use

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shiffman, Saul

    2009-01-01

    Ecological momentary assessment (EMA) is particularly suitable for studying substance use, because use is episodic and thought to be related to mood and context. This article reviews EMA methods in substance use research, focusing on tobacco and alcohol use and relapse, where EMA has been most applied. Common EMA designs combine event-based…

  10. Science and ecological literacy in undergraduate field studies education

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mapp, Kim J.

    There is an ever-increasing number of issues that face our world today; from climate change, water and food scarcity, to pollution and resource extraction. Science and ecology play fundamental roles in these problems, and yet the understanding of these fields is limited in our society (Miller, 2002; McBride, Brewer, Berkowitz, and Borrie, 2013). Across the nation students are finishing their undergraduate degrees and are expected to enter the workforce and society with the skills needed to succeed. The deficit of science and ecological literacy in these students has been recognized and a call for reform begun (D'Avanzo, 2003 and NRC, 2009). This mixed-methods study looked at how a field studies course could fill the gap of science and ecological literacy in undergraduates. Using grounded theory, five key themes were data-derived; definitions, systems thinking, human's role in the environment, impetus for change and transference. These themes where then triangulated for validity and reliability through qualitative and quantitative assessments. A sixth theme was also identified, the learning environment. Due to limited data to support this themes' development and reliability it is discussed in Chapter 5 to provide recommendations for further research. Key findings show that this field studies program influenced students' science and ecological literacy through educational theory and practice.

  11. Ecological risk assessment as a watershed management tool -- Case study of middle Snake River, Idaho

    SciTech Connect

    Cirone, P.A.; Yearsley, J.; Filbin, G.J.; Norton, D.; Falter, C.M.; Minshall, W.; Brandt, D.

    1995-12-31

    Ecological risk assessment is a scientific tool designed to evaluate the ecological effects of human activities. Historically, risk assessments have been used as a tool to assess risks to human health from environmental exposures to toxic pollutants, or to assess the ecological effects of toxic releases. The middle Snake River has been used as one of five EPA case studies to demonstrate the applicability of risk assessment at the watershed level for assessing the relative effects of multiple stressors on key ecological components of the aquatic ecosystem. The state and federal resource managers and the public identified restoration and protection of native cold water salmonid species and rare and endangered invertebrate species as a management goal. The risk assessment sought to characterize the significance of reduced water flow, sedimentation, and increased nutrients on these ecological components through a process of problem formulation, stressor-effects analysis, and risk characterization. The desired outcome of the assessment is to identify conditions that must be attained to support the management goal as one step in evaluating management options for ecological protection in the watershed.

  12. Complex distribution patterns, ecology and coexistence of ploidy levels of Allium oleraceum (Alliaceae) in the Czech Republic

    PubMed Central

    Duchoslav, Martin; Šafářová, Lenka; Krahulec, František

    2010-01-01

    Background and Aims Despite extensive study of polyploidy, its origin, and ecogeographical differences between polyploids and their diploid progenitors, few studies have addressed ploidy-level structure and patterns of ecogeographical differentiation at various spatial scales using detailed sampling procedures. The pattern of coexistence of polyploids in the geophyte Allium oleraceum at the landscape and locality scale and their ecology were studied. Methods Flow cytometry and root-tip squashes were used to identify the ploidy level of 4347 plants from 325 populations sampled from the Czech Republic using a stratified random sampling procedure. Ecological differentiation among ploidy levels was tested by comparing sets of environmental variables recorded at each locality. Key Results Across the entire sampling area, pentaploids (2n = 5x = 40) predominated, while hexaploids (2n = 6x = 48) and tetraploids (2n = 4x = 32) were less frequent. The distribution of tetra- and hexaploids was partially sympatric (in the eastern part) to parapatric (in the western part of the Czech Republic) whereas pentaploids were sympatric with other cytotypes. Plants of different ploidy levels were found to be ecologically differentiated and the ruderal character of cytotypes increased in the direction 4x → 5x → 6x with the largest realized niche differences between tetra- and hexaploids. Most populations contained only one ploidy level (77 %), 22 % had two (all possible combinations) and 1 % were composed of three ploidy levels. The majority of 4x + 5x and 5x + 6x mixed populations occurred in sympatry with uniform populations of the participating cytotypes in sites with ecologically heterogeneous or marginal environment, suggesting secondary contact between cytotypes. Some mixed 4x + 6x populations dominated by tetraploids being sympatric and intermixed with uniform 4x populations might represent primary zones of cytotype contact. Almost no mixed accessions were observed on the fine

  13. Peak HIV prevalence: a useful outcome variable for ecological studies.

    PubMed

    Kenyon, Chris; Colebunders, Robert; Voeten, Helene; Lurie, Mark

    2013-05-01

    A key question for ecological studies with HIV as the outcome variable is what measure of HIV prevalence to use. In this study we compared the strengths and weaknesses of a variety of measures of HIV prevalence, focusing on peak HIV prevalence and HIV prevalence measured at the same time as the exposure variable. We explored the theoretical problems with each of the two measures of HIV prevalence. We then investigated the difference that substituting one variable for the other made to two published ecological studies. One published study found a strong relationship between migration intensity and HIV prevalence measured at the time the migration was measured. When we repeated the analysis using peak HIV prevalence as the outcome variable, there was no evidence of an association. The second study found evidence of a strong relationship between concurrency and peak HIV prevalence. On repetition of the analysis (but utilizing HIV prevalence at the time the concurrency was measured as the outcome variable) there was no longer a significant association. The choice of HIV measure as outcome variable in ecological studies makes a large difference to the study results. The choice of peak HIV prevalence as outcome variable offers the advantage of avoiding the HIV introduction time bias.

  14. Threatened and endangered subspecies with vulnerable ecological traits also have high susceptibility to sea level rise and habitat fragmentation.

    PubMed

    Benscoter, Allison M; Reece, Joshua S; Noss, Reed F; Brandt, Laura A; Mazzotti, Frank J; Romañach, Stephanie S; Watling, James I

    2013-01-01

    The presence of multiple interacting threats to biodiversity and the increasing rate of species extinction make it critical to prioritize management efforts on species and communities that maximize conservation success. We implemented a multi-step approach that coupled vulnerability assessments evaluating threats to Florida taxa such as climate change, sea-level rise, and habitat fragmentation with in-depth literature surveys of taxon-specific ecological traits. The vulnerability, adaptive capacity, and ecological traits of 12 threatened and endangered subspecies were compared to non-listed subspecies of the same parent species. Overall, the threatened and endangered subspecies showed high vulnerability and low adaptive capacity, in particular to sea level rise and habitat fragmentation. They also exhibited larger home ranges and greater dispersal limitation compared to non-endangered subspecies, which may inhibit their ability to track changing climate in fragmented landscapes. There was evidence for lower reproductive capacity in some of the threatened or endangered taxa, but not for most. Taxa located in the Florida Keys or in other low coastal areas were most vulnerable to sea level rise, and also showed low levels of adaptive capacity, indicating they may have a lower probability of conservation success. Our analysis of at-risk subspecies and closely related non-endangered subspecies demonstrates that ecological traits help to explain observed differences in vulnerability and adaptive capacity. This study points to the importance of assessing the relative contributions of multiple threats and evaluating conservation value at the species (or subspecies) level when resources are limited and several factors affect conservation success.

  15. Threatened and endangered subspecies with vulnerable ecological traits Also have high susceptibility to sea level rise and habitat fragmentation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Benscoter, Allison M.; Reece, Joshua S.; Noss, Reed F.; Brandt, Laura B.; Mazzotti, Frank J.; Romañach, Stephanie S.; Watling, James I.

    2013-01-01

    The presence of multiple interacting threats to biodiversity and the increasing rate of species extinction make it critical to prioritize management efforts on species and communities that maximize conservation success. We implemented a multi-step approach that coupled vulnerability assessments evaluating threats to Florida taxa such as climate change, sea-level rise, and habitat fragmentation with in-depth literature surveys of taxon-specific ecological traits. The vulnerability, adaptive capacity, and ecological traits of 12 threatened and endangered subspecies were compared to non-listed subspecies of the same parent species. Overall, the threatened and endangered subspecies showed high vulnerability and low adaptive capacity, in particular to sea level rise and habitat fragmentation. They also exhibited larger home ranges and greater dispersal limitation compared to non-endangered subspecies, which may inhibit their ability to track changing climate in fragmented landscapes. There was evidence for lower reproductive capacity in some of the threatened or endangered taxa, but not for most. Taxa located in the Florida Keys or in other low coastal areas were most vulnerable to sea level rise, and also showed low levels of adaptive capacity, indicating they may have a lower probability of conservation success. Our analysis of at-risk subspecies and closely related non-endangered subspecies demonstrates that ecological traits help to explain observed differences in vulnerability and adaptive capacity. This study points to the importance of assessing the relative contributions of multiple threats and evaluating conservation value at the species (or subspecies) level when resources are limited and several factors affect conservation success.

  16. Ecological study of social fragmentation, poverty, and suicide

    PubMed Central

    Whitley, Elise; Gunnell, David; Dorling, Daniel; Smith, George Davey

    1999-01-01

    Objectives To investigate the association between suicide and area based measures of deprivation and social fragmentation. Design Ecological study. Setting 633 parliamentary constituencies of Great Britain as defined in 1991. Main outcome measures Age and sex specific mortality rates for suicide and all other causes for 1981-92. Results Mortality from suicide and all other causes increased with increasing Townsend deprivation score, social fragmentation score, and abstention from voting in all age and sex groups. Suicide mortality was most strongly related to social fragmentation, whereas deaths from other causes were more closely associated with Townsend score. Constituencies with absolute increases in social fragmentation and Townsend scores between 1981 and 1991 tended to have greater increases in suicide rates over the same period. The relation between change in social fragmentation and suicide was largely independent of Townsend score, whereas the association with Townsend score was generally reduced after adjustment for social fragmentation. Conclusions Suicide rates are more strongly associated with measures of social fragmentation than with poverty at a constituency level. Key messagesPlace of residence may affect health, and mortality from most common diseases tends to be higher in areas characterised by low socioeconomic positionResearch dating back over 100 years suggests that social fragmentation may influencesuicideIn the 1980s and 1990s, parliamentary constituencies with high levels of social fragmentation had high rates of suicide, independent of deprivationConstituencies with the greatest increases in social fragmentation between 1981 and 1991 also had the greatest increases in suicide rates over the same periodAny targeting of suicide prevention may be more effective if aimed at socially fragmented rather than deprived areas PMID:10521194

  17. The human dimensions of climate change: A micro-level assessment of views from the ecological modernization, political economy and human ecology perspectives.

    PubMed

    Adua, Lazarus; York, Richard; Schuelke-Leech, Beth-Anne

    2016-03-01

    Understanding the manifold human and physical dimensions of climate change has become an area of great interest to researchers in recent decades. Using a U.S. nationally-representative data set and drawing on the ecological modernization, political economy, and human ecology perspectives, this study examines the impacts of energy efficiency technologies, affluence, household demographics, and biophysical characteristics on residential CO2 emissions. Overall, the study provides mixed support for the ecological modernization perspective. While several findings are consistent with the theory's expectation that modern societies can harness technology to mitigate human impacts on the environment, others directly contradict it. Also, the theory's prediction of an inverted U-shaped relationship between affluence and environmental impacts is contradicted. The evidence is somewhat more supportive of the political economy and human ecology perspectives, with affluence, some indicators of technology, household demographics, and biophysical characteristics emerging as important drivers of residential CO2 emissions.

  18. Evolutionary and ecological approaches to the study of personality

    PubMed Central

    Réale, Denis; Dingemanse, Niels J.; Kazem, Anahita J. N.; Wright, Jonathan

    2010-01-01

    This introduction to the themed issue on Evolutionary and ecological approaches to the study of personality provides an overview of conceptual, theoretical and methodological progress in research on animal personalities over the last decade, and places the contributions to this volume in context. The issue has three main goals. First, we aimed to bring together theoreticians to contribute to the development of models providing adaptive explanations for animal personality that could guide empiricists, and stimulate exchange of ideas between the two groups of researchers. Second, we aimed to stimulate cross-fertilization between different scientific fields that study personality, namely behavioural ecology, psychology, genomics, quantitative genetics, neuroendocrinology and developmental biology. Third, we aimed to foster the application of an evolutionary framework to the study of personality. PMID:21078646

  19. Ecological Effects of Sea Level Rise: Advancing coastal management through integrated research and engagement

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kidwell, D. M.

    2012-12-01

    Rising sea level represents a significant threat to coastal communities and ecosystems through land loss, altered habitats, and increased vulnerability to coastal storms and inundation. This threat is exemplified in the northern Gulf of Mexico where low topography, expansive marshes, and a prevalence of tropical storms have already resulted in extensive coastal impacts. The development of robust predictive capabilities that incorporate complex biological processes with physical dynamics are critical for informed planning and restoration efforts for coastal ecosystems. Looking to build upon existing predictive modeling capabilities and allow for use of multiple model (i.e., ensemble) approaches, NOAA initiated the Ecological Effects of Sea Level Rise program in 2010 to advance physical/biological integrative modeling capabilities in the region with a goal to provide user friendly predictive tools for coastal ecosystem management. Focused on the northern Gulf of Mexico, this multi-disciplinary project led by the University of Central Florida will use in situ field studies to parameterize physical and biological models. These field studies will also result in a predictive capability for overland sediment delivery and transport that will further enhance marsh, oyster, and submerged aquatic vegetation models. Results from this integrated modeling effort are envisioned to inform management strategies for reducing risk, restoration and breakwater guidelines, and resource sustainability for project planning, among other uses. In addition to the science components, this project incorporates significant engagement of the management community through a management applications principle investigator and an advisory management committee. Routine engagement between the science team and the management committee, including annual workshops, are focused on ensuring the development of applicable, relevant, and useable products and tools at the conclusion of this project. Particular

  20. ELF communications system ecological monitoring program. Small vertebrate studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beaver, Donald L.; Hill, Richard W.; Hill, Susan D.

    1994-10-01

    The U.S. Navy has completed a program monitoring flora, fauna, and ecological relationships tor possible effects from electromagnetic fields produced by its Extremely Low Frequency (ELF) Communications System. This report documents studies of small mammals and nesting birds conducted near its transmitting antenna in Michigan. From 1982 through 1993 researchers from the Michigan State University (MSU) monitored organismal and population aspects of vertebrates in areas near (treatment) and far (control) from the Michigan antenna. They examined the reproductive, developmental, behavioral, and physiological characteristics of representative vertebrate species. Studied species were the deer mouse, chipmunk, tree swallow, and blackcapped - chickadee. Investigators had also monitored ecological aspects of the mammalian community until 1988 when this study element was discontinued due to highly variable results. In a different project, ornithologists from the University of Minnesota-Duluth monitored the ecological characteristics of the bird community near the ELF System. The MSU research team used several statistical tests to examine data; however, nested analysis of variance was the most often used test. Based on the results of their study, they conclude that the EM fields produced by the Naval Radio Transmitting Facility-Republic, Michigan did not affect small vertebrates.

  1. Polychlorinated biphenyls and Hudson River white perch: implications for population-level ecological risk assessment and risk management.

    PubMed

    Barnthouse, Lawrence W; Glaser, David; DeSantis, Liane

    2009-07-01

    Risk assessments and risk management decisions concerning risks to wild fish populations resulting from exposures to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and related chemicals have been based primarily on observations of effects of chemicals on individual organisms. Although the development and application of population-level ecological risk-assessment methods is proceeding at a rapid pace, the organism-level approach is still being justified by arguments that population-level ecological risk assessment is in an early stage of development and has not been shown to be reliable. This article highlights the importance of including population-level effects in risk-management decision-making, by examining the effects of exposures to PCBs on fish populations inhabiting the Hudson River, New York, USA, a system in which data have been collected for approximately 30 y concerning both concentrations of PCBs in sediment and fish tissue and the abundance and reproduction of exposed fish populations. We previously tested hypotheses concerning the effects of PCBs on the striped bass population of the Hudson River, and found that the available data conflicted with all of these hypotheses. Here, we report results of similar analyses of effects of historic PCB exposures on the Hudson River white perch population, using an extended data set that recently became available. As with striped bass, we found no correlation between maternal PCB tissue concentrations and any measure of reproductive success in Hudson River white perch during the 30-y period covered by the data set. Together with results of studies performed on fish populations exposed to PCBs at other sites, our results clearly demonstrate that physiological and genetic adaptation, biological compensation, and other ecological processes influence responses of fish populations to PCB exposures and should be considered in risk management decision-making.

  2. Students' exposure and career aspirations in ecology: A study using semi-structured interviews to gain knowledge of public school students

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, Heather C.

    Ecology as a field is dominated by white males, McCarter (2003) has noted that women and minorities are underrepresented in the discipline of ecology across the United States. The contribution of this research is to assess and quantify, in a scientific manner, students' exposure, and career aspirations towards ecology; 226 student responses were coded from semi-structured interviews. The main objectives of this study, using student interviews, were the following: (1) assess the importance of exposure to ecology and ecological related topics to: gender, ethnicity, region, grades in science, grades in non-science, grade level, and interest in ecology career. (2) determine if early exposure to ecology (i.e. gained in high school) and ecological related topics is related to an increased interest of students continuing in an ecologically related field and (3) assess if high school students who have been involved in more outdoor related activities such as camping, hiking, hunting, and/or fishing, will be more likely to be interested in an ecological career. Overall, the results indicated that students interviewed for this study generally responded in a positive manner, and were generally interested in ecology. Some students were even interested in pursuing a career in ecology. The study revealed significant differences in the exposure of ecology between school locations, girls and boys, and whites and non-whites. The results of this research and avenues for future research are discussed.

  3. Polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) concentration in soil from San Luis Potosi, Mexico: levels and ecological and human health risk characterization.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Vázquez, Francisco J; Orta-García, Sandra T; Ochoa-Martínez, Ángeles C; Pruneda-Álvarez, Lucia G; Ruiz-Vera, Tania; Jiménez-Avalos, Jorge Armando; González-Palomo, Ana K; Pérez-Maldonado, Iván N

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to assess the levels of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in soils from the city of San Luis Potosi in Mexico and perform an ecological and human health risk characterization. In order to confirm the presence of PBDEs, outdoor surface soil samples were collected and the concentrations of PBDEs in urban, industrial, agricultural, and brick kiln industry areas were determined. The mean total PBDEs levels obtained in the study sites were 25.0 ± 39.5 μg/kg (geometric mean ± standard deviation) in the brick kiln industry zone; 34.5 ± 36.0 μg/kg in the urban zone; 8.00 ± 7.10 μg/kg in the industrial zone and 16.6 ± 15.3 μg/kg in the agricultural zone. The ecological and human health risk characterization showed relatively low-hazard quotient values. However, the moderately high PBDEs levels found in soils highlight the necessity to establish a systematic monitoring process for PBDEs in environmental and biological samples.

  4. Composition profiles, levels, distributions and ecological risk assessments of trihalomethanes in surface water from a typical estuary of Bohai Bay, China.

    PubMed

    Niu, Zhiguang; Li, Xiaonan; Zhang, Ying

    2017-01-31

    To characterize the spatiotemporal distribution and potential ecological risk for trihalomethanes (THMs) in the surface water of a river estuary, surface water samples were collected over five consecutive months (from March to July 2016) from four sites in the Haihe River estuary of Bohai Bay. The potential ecological risks of THMs were evaluated quantitatively based on a species sensitivity distribution (SSD) model. The results demonstrate that trichloromethane (TCM) was the predominant THM in surface water of the Haihe River estuary (2.93±1.98μg/L) followed by tribromomethane (TBM) (0.42±0.33μg/L), bromodichloromethane (BDCM) (0.14±0.06μg/L) and dibromochloromethane (DBCM) (0.09±0.10μg/L). The concentration of TCM was higher in summer than that in spring, while TBM displayed the opposite trend. The TCM concentration decreased from the estuary to the adjacent sea. However, the levels of TBM and DBCM in the adjacent sea were higher than those in the estuary. The ecological risks of THMs in surface water of Haihe River were notably low, and the ecological risks of THMs in freshwater were generally higher than those in seawater. Compared with other contaminants in water and surface sediment from rivers and coastal areas, the ecological risk levels of THMs in surface water can be considered low. This study is a contribution to the progress of ecological risk assessment of THMs.

  5. Africanized honey bees (Apis mellifera) have low infestation levels of the mite Varroa destructor in different ecological regions in Mexico.

    PubMed

    Medina-Flores, C A; Guzmán-Novoa, E; Hamiduzzaman, M M; Aréchiga-Flores, C F; López-Carlos, M A

    2014-02-21

    Honey bee (Apis mellifera) colonies of African and European descent were compared for levels of Varroa destructor infestation in 3 different ecological regions in Mexico. The 300 colonies that were studied were located in subtropical, temperate sub-humid, and temperate dry climates. The morphotype and mitotype of adult bees as well as their rates of infestation by varroa mites were determined. Additionally, the number of combs with brood and covered with bees was recorded for each colony. The highest frequency of colonies that were classified as African-derived was found in the subtropical environment, whereas the lowest occurred in the temperate dry region. Overall, the colonies of African genotype had significantly lower mite infestation rates (3.5±0.34%) than the colonies of European genotype (4.7±0.49%) regardless of the region sampled. Significant effects of genotype and region on Varroa infestation rates were evident, and there were no differences in bee population or capped brood between genotypes. Mite infestation levels were significantly lower in the colonies of the temperate dry region than in the colonies of the other 2 regions. These results are discussed within the context of results from studies that were previously conducted in Brazil. This is the first study that demonstrates the effects of Africanization and ecological environment on V. destructor infestation rates in honey bee colonies in North America.

  6. How phylogeny and foraging ecology drive the level of chemosensory exploration in lizards and snakes.

    PubMed

    Baeckens, S; Van Damme, R; Cooper, W E

    2017-03-01

    The chemical senses are crucial for squamates (lizards and snakes). The extent to which squamates utilize their chemosensory system, however, varies greatly among taxa and species' foraging strategies, and played an influential role in squamate evolution. In lizards, 'Scleroglossa' evolved a state where species use chemical cues to search for food (active foragers), whereas 'Iguania' retained the use of vision to hunt prey (ambush foragers). However, such strict dichotomy is flawed as shifts in foraging modes have occurred in all clades. Here, we attempted to disentangle effects of foraging ecology from phylogenetic trait conservatism as leading cause of the disparity in chemosensory investment among squamates. To do so, we used species' tongue-flick rate (TFR) in the absence of ecological relevant chemical stimuli as a proxy for its fundamental level of chemosensory investigation, that is baseline TFR. Based on literature data of nearly 100 species and using phylogenetic comparative methods, we tested whether and how foraging mode and diet affect baseline TFR. Our results show that baseline TFR is higher in active than ambush foragers. Although baseline TFRs appear phylogenetically stable in some lizard taxa, that is a consequence of concordant stability of foraging mode: when foraging mode shifts within taxa, so does baseline TFR. Also, baseline TFR is a good predictor of prey chemical discriminatory ability, as we established a strong positive relationship between baseline TFR and TFR in response to prey. Baseline TFR is unrelated to diet. Essentially, foraging mode, not phylogenetic relatedness, drives convergent evolution of similar levels of squamate chemosensory investigation.

  7. Selection of ecologic covariates in the American Cancer Society study.

    PubMed

    Willis, Alette; Krewski, Daniel; Jerrett, Michael; Goldberg, Mark S; Burnett, Richard T

    The American Cancer Society (ACS) Study of the effects of long-term exposure to ambient air pollution on mortality used metropolitan areas to assign exposures to individual cohort members (Pope et al., 1995); these authors did not, however, control for any other place-specific variables in their analysis. Consequently, the study has been criticized on the basis that the association observed between air pollution and mortality may be confounded by other unmeasured ecologic covariates. To address this criticism, the reanalysis team selected a set of place-specific variables that measured determinants of health ranging from the biophysical environment to the social environment and the healthcare system. This article outlines the process by which place-specific ecologic covariates were selected; data measuring these variables were obtained and geographic boundaries for places were delineated. Issues involved in obtaining and using geographically based ecological data are examined within the context of the reanalysis of the ACS study. Both the ecological fallacy and the atomistic fallacy are addressed and an argument is made for the importance of studying the effects of place-specific variables that are integral or contextual in nature. Issues relating to the Modifiable Areal Unit Problem (MAUP) are explored with reference to using ZIP codes and data from a variety of sources. It is argued that differences in the geographical scale of variability for various pollutants may prove to be the key to distinguishing between their relative impacts on health and that multilevel analyses are essential for understanding the impact of social and environmental determinants of health. A number of determinants of health are then briefly examined in terms of their association with mortality, the appropriateness of their being measured at the metropolitan scale, and the availability of data for the 1980s from U.S. sources. Finally, the article presents the database of place

  8. Will the Effects of Sea-Level Rise Create Ecological Traps for Pacific Island Seabirds?

    PubMed

    Reynolds, Michelle H; Courtot, Karen N; Berkowitz, Paul; Storlazzi, Curt D; Moore, Janet; Flint, Elizabeth

    2015-01-01

    More than 18 million seabirds nest on 58 Pacific islands protected within vast U.S. Marine National Monuments (1.9 million km2). However, most of these seabird colonies are on low-elevation islands and sea-level rise (SLR) and accompanying high-water perturbations are predicted to escalate with climate change. To understand how SLR may impact protected islands and insular biodiversity, we modeled inundation and wave-driven flooding of a globally important seabird rookery in the subtropical Pacific. We acquired new high-resolution Digital Elevation Models (DEMs) and used the Delft3D wave model and ArcGIS to model wave heights and inundation for a range of SLR scenarios (+0.5, +1.0, +1.5, and +2.0 m) at Midway Atoll. Next, we classified vegetation to delineate habitat exposure to inundation and identified how breeding phenology, colony synchrony, and life history traits affect species-specific sensitivity. We identified 3 of 13 species as highly vulnerable to SLR in the Hawaiian Islands and quantified their atoll-wide distribution (Laysan albatross, Phoebastria immutabilis; black-footed albatross, P. nigripes; and Bonin petrel, Pterodroma hypoleuca). Our models of wave-driven flooding forecast nest losses up to 10% greater than passive inundation models at +1.0 m SLR. At projections of + 2.0 m SLR, approximately 60% of albatross and 44% of Bonin petrel nests were overwashed displacing more than 616,400 breeding albatrosses and petrels. Habitat loss due to passive SLR may decrease the carrying capacity of some islands to support seabird colonies, while sudden high-water events directly reduce survival and reproduction. This is the first study to simulate wave-driven flooding and the combined impacts of SLR, groundwater rise, and storm waves on seabird colonies. Our results highlight the need for early climate change planning and restoration of higher elevation seabird refugia to prevent low-lying protected islands from becoming ecological traps in the face of rising

  9. Will the Effects of Sea-Level Rise Create Ecological Traps for Pacific Island Seabirds?

    PubMed Central

    Reynolds, Michelle H.; Courtot, Karen N.; Berkowitz, Paul; Storlazzi, Curt D.; Moore, Janet; Flint, Elizabeth

    2015-01-01

    More than 18 million seabirds nest on 58 Pacific islands protected within vast U.S. Marine National Monuments (1.9 million km2). However, most of these seabird colonies are on low-elevation islands and sea-level rise (SLR) and accompanying high-water perturbations are predicted to escalate with climate change. To understand how SLR may impact protected islands and insular biodiversity, we modeled inundation and wave-driven flooding of a globally important seabird rookery in the subtropical Pacific. We acquired new high-resolution Digital Elevation Models (DEMs) and used the Delft3D wave model and ArcGIS to model wave heights and inundation for a range of SLR scenarios (+0.5, +1.0, +1.5, and +2.0 m) at Midway Atoll. Next, we classified vegetation to delineate habitat exposure to inundation and identified how breeding phenology, colony synchrony, and life history traits affect species-specific sensitivity. We identified 3 of 13 species as highly vulnerable to SLR in the Hawaiian Islands and quantified their atoll-wide distribution (Laysan albatross, Phoebastria immutabilis; black-footed albatross, P. nigripes; and Bonin petrel, Pterodroma hypoleuca). Our models of wave-driven flooding forecast nest losses up to 10% greater than passive inundation models at +1.0 m SLR. At projections of + 2.0 m SLR, approximately 60% of albatross and 44% of Bonin petrel nests were overwashed displacing more than 616,400 breeding albatrosses and petrels. Habitat loss due to passive SLR may decrease the carrying capacity of some islands to support seabird colonies, while sudden high-water events directly reduce survival and reproduction. This is the first study to simulate wave-driven flooding and the combined impacts of SLR, groundwater rise, and storm waves on seabird colonies. Our results highlight the need for early climate change planning and restoration of higher elevation seabird refugia to prevent low-lying protected islands from becoming ecological traps in the face of rising

  10. Will the effects of sea-level rise create ecological traps for Pacific Island seabirds?

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Reynolds, Michelle H.; Courtot, Karen; Berkowitz, Paul; Storlazzi, Curt; Moore, Janet; Flint, Elizabeth

    2015-01-01

    More than 18 million seabirds nest on 58 Pacific islands protected within vast U.S. Marine National Monuments (1.9 million km2). However, most of these seabird colonies are on low-elevation islands and sea-level rise (SLR) and accompanying high-water perturbations are predicted to escalate with climate change. To understand how SLR may impact protected islands and insular biodiversity, we modeled inundation and wave-driven flooding of a globally important seabird rookery in the subtropical Pacific. We acquired new high-resolution Digital Elevation Models (DEMs) and used the Delft3D wave model and ArcGIS to model wave heights and inundation for a range of SLR scenarios (+0.5, +1.0, +1.5, and +2.0 m) at Midway Atoll. Next, we classified vegetation to delineate habitat exposure to inundation and identified how breeding phenology, colony synchrony, and life history traits affect species-specific sensitivity. We identified 3 of 13 species as highly vulnerable to SLR in the Hawaiian Islands and quantified their atoll-wide distribution (Laysan albatross, Phoebastria immutabilis; black-footed albatross, P. nigripes; and Bonin petrel, Pterodroma hypoleuca). Our models of wave-driven flooding forecast nest losses up to 10% greater than passive inundation models at +1.0 m SLR. At projections of + 2.0 m SLR, approximately 60% of albatross and 44% of Bonin petrel nests were overwashed displacing more than 616,400 breeding albatrosses and petrels. Habitat loss due to passive SLR may decrease the carrying capacity of some islands to support seabird colonies, while sudden high-water events directly reduce survival and reproduction. This is the first study to simulate wave-driven flooding and the combined impacts of SLR, groundwater rise, and storm waves on seabird colonies. Our results highlight the need for early climate change planning and restoration of higher elevation seabird refugia to prevent low-lying protected islands from becoming ecological traps in the face of

  11. Ecological and physiological factors affecting brood patch area and prolactin levels in arctic-nesting geese

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Jonsson, J.E.; Afton, A.D.; Alisauskas, R.T.; Bluhm, C.K.; El Halawani, M.E.

    2006-01-01

    We investigated effects of ecological and physiological factors on brood patch area and prolactin levels in free-ranging Lesser Snow Geese (Chen caerulescens caerulescens; hereafter "Snow Geese") and Ross's Geese (C. rossii). On the basis of the body-size hypothesis, we predicted that the relationships between prolactin levels, brood patch area, and body condition would be stronger in Ross's Geese than in the larger Snow Geese. We found that brood patch area was positively related to clutch volume and inversely related to prolactin levels in Ross's Geese, but not in Snow Geese. Nest size, nest habitat, and first egg date did not affect brood patch area in either species. Prolactin levels increased as incubation progressed in female Snow Geese, but this relationship was not significant in Ross's Geese. Prolactin levels and body condition (as indexed by size-adjusted body mass) were inversely related in Ross's Geese, but not in Snow Geese. Our findings are consistent with the prediction that relationships between prolactin levels, brood patch area, and body condition are relatively stronger in Ross's Geese, because they mobilize endogenous reserves at faster rates than Snow Geese. ?? The American Ornithologists' Union, 2006. Printed in USA.

  12. [Ecology and ecologies].

    PubMed

    Valera, Luca

    2011-01-01

    Ecology (from the Greek words οιχοσ, "house" and λογια "study of") is the science of the "house", since it studies the environments where we live. There are three main ways of thinking about Ecology: Ecology as the study of interactions (between humans and the environment, between humans and living beings, between all living beings, etc.), Ecology as the statistical study of interactions, Ecology as a faith, or rather as a science that requires a metaphysical view. The history of Ecology shows us how this view was released by the label of "folk sense" to gain the epistemological status of science, a science that strives to be interdisciplinary. So, the aim of Ecology is to study, through a scientific methodology, the whole natural world, answering to very different questions, that arise from several fields (Economics, Biology, Sociology, Philosophy, etc.). The plurality of issues that Ecology has to face led, during the Twentieth-century, to branch off in several different "ecologies". As a result, each one of these new approaches chose as its own field a more limited and specific portion of reality.

  13. ELF communications system ecological monitoring program: Michigan bird studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hanowski, Joann M.; Niemi, Gerald J.; Blake, John G.

    1994-10-01

    The U.S. Navy has completed a program monitoring flora, fauna, and ecological relationships for possible effects from electromagnetic fields produced by its Extremely Low Frequency (ELF) Communications System. This report documents studies of the resident and migratory birds in Michigan. Researchers from the University of Minnesota,Duluth (UMD) used a line-transect method to simultaneously census the avian community present in areas near (treatment) and far (reference) from the Michigan transmitter. Monthly censuses (May to September) were performed annually from 1986 through 1993. Data collected over the entire period of study were analyzed using repeated analysis of variance. Study parameters included total species richness, species abundance, abundance of common bird species, and abundance of birds within selected guilds. Analyses showed a few statistically significant changes in the intersite relationship of parameters over time; however, the pattern of changes was not related to EM exposures. The number of significant changes was small, and not greater than that expected to occur by chance alone. Study results in Michigan are similar to those obtained by UMD for surveys performed near the Wisconsin transmitter UMD researchers conclude no effects on avian ecology from operation of the ELF Communications System.

  14. Molecular ecology studies of species radiations: current research gaps, opportunities, and challenges.

    PubMed

    de la Harpe, Marylaure; Paris, Margot; Karger, Dirk N; Rolland, Jonathan; Kessler, Michael; Salamin, Nicolas; Lexer, Christian

    2017-03-18

    Understanding the drivers and limits of species radiations is a crucial goal of evolutionary genetics and molecular ecology, yet research on this topic has been hampered by the notorious difficulty of connecting micro- and macro-evolutionary approaches to studying the drivers of diversification. To chart the current research gaps, opportunities, and challenges of molecular ecology approaches to studying radiations, we examine the literature in the journal Molecular Ecology and re-visit recent high-profile examples of evolutionary genomic research on radiations. We find that available studies of radiations are highly unevenly distributed among taxa, with many ecologically important and species-rich organismal groups remaining severely understudied, including arthropods, plants, and fungi. Most studies employed molecular methods suitable over either short or long evolutionary time scales, such as microsatellites or Restriction site Associated DNA sequencing (RAD-seq) in the former case and conventional amplicon sequencing of organellar DNA in the latter. The potential of molecular ecology studies to address and resolve patterns and processes around the species level in radiating groups of taxa is currently limited primarily by sample size and a dearth of information on radiating nuclear genomes as opposed to organellar ones. Based on our literature survey and personal experience, we suggest possible ways forward in the coming years. We touch on the potential and current limitations of whole genome sequencing (WGS) in studies of radiations. We suggest that WGS and targeted ('capture') resequencing emerge as the methods of choice for scaling up the sampling of populations, species, and genomes, including currently understudied organismal groups and the genes or regulatory elements expected to matter most to species radiations. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  15. Dog ecology and population studies in Lagos State, Nigeria.

    PubMed

    Hambolu, Sunday Emmanuel; Dzikwi, Asabe A; Kwaga, Jacob K P; Kazeem, Haruna M; Umoh, Jarlath U; Hambolu, Dupe A

    2014-02-14

    Dog population dynamics have a major impact upon the effectiveness of rabies control strategies. As such, understanding domestic dog ecology has been recognized as central to the design of effective rabies control programmes. This study was conducted to determine the dog ecology in Lagos State using compound dog count and street dog count in the three senatorial districts (Lagos West, East and Central) of Lagos State from February, 2011 to January, 2012. A total of 546 questionnaires were distributed for the compound dog count and all were completed and returned. Various aspects of dog ecology were determined, including size, sex, breed of the dog population, management of dogs and rabies awareness among the respondents. Out of the 546 compounds surveyed, 518 (94.87%) owned at least one dog. A total of 1,427 dogs were counted from the street counts while a total of 1,447 dogs (2.8 dogs/compound) were counted from the compound count. The dogs comprised of 583 males and 864 females, out of which 64.10% are confined. The dog vaccination coverage in the dog population surveyed was 64.10% and administered majorly (91.30%) by veterinarians. Security (60%) and pets (26%) were the major reasons for keeping dogs. Majority (88.80%) of the respondents were aware of rabies and its mode of transmission, but still believed in the use of concoctions (40.40%), herbs (19.90%) and consumption of the organ of the offending dog (11.50%) for the treatment of rabies. The findings of this study showed a male: female ratio of dog to be 1:1.5 and a dog: human ratio of 1:5.6. There was also a responsible dog ownership as majority of the respondents do confine, vaccinate and provide food for their dogs. Vaccination coverage of the total dog population was however below the 70-80% target recommended by the World Health Organization to achieve herd immunity.

  16. Nested Levels of Adaptive Divergence: The Genetic Basis of Craniofacial Divergence and Ecological Sexual Dimorphism

    PubMed Central

    Parsons, Kevin J.; Wang, Jason; Anderson, Graeme; Albertson, R. Craig

    2015-01-01

    Exemplary systems for adaptive divergence are often characterized by their large degrees of phenotypic variation. This variation represents the outcome of generations of diversifying selection. However, adaptive radiations can also contain a hierarchy of differentiation nested within them where species display only subtle phenotypic differences that still have substantial effects on ecology, function, and ultimately fitness. Sexual dimorphisms are also common in species displaying adaptive divergence and can be the result of differential selection between sexes that produce ecological differences between sexes. Understanding the genetic basis of subtle variation (between certain species or sexes) is therefore important for understanding the process of adaptive divergence. Using cichlids from the dramatic adaptive radiation of Lake Malawi, we focus on understanding the genetic basis of two aspects of relatively subtle phenotypic variation. This included a morphometric comparison of the patterns of craniofacial divergence between two ecologically similar species in relation to the larger adaptive radiation of Malawi, and male–female morphological divergence between their F2 hybrids. We then genetically map craniofacial traits within the context of sex and locate several regions of the genome that contribute to variation in craniofacial shape that is relevant to sexual dimorphism within species and subtle divergence between closely related species, and possibly to craniofacial divergence in the Malawi radiation as a whole. To enhance our search for candidate genes we take advantage of population genomic data and a genetic map that is anchored to the cichlid genome to determine which genes within our QTL regions are associated with SNPs that are alternatively fixed between species. This study provides a holistic understanding of the genetic underpinnings of adaptive divergence in craniofacial shape. PMID:26038365

  17. Study on the Change of Landscape and Ecology of Sitou Forestland by Using Remotely Sensed and Ecological Investigation Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wei, Chiang; Lee, Chin-Ling; Liao, Huan-Chang; Tien, Pei-Ling; Huang, Yi-Ru; Tseng, Yu-San; Lai, Jing Rong; Shen, Chieh-Wen

    Due to natural disasters and anthropogenic disturbances in recent years, the landscape in Central Taiwan suffered certain kind of changes. In particular, landslides caused by earthquake and heavy rainfall, improper use and development in slope land enlarge and speed up the change of forest landscape. Few studies were focused on the interactions and relationships between change of ecosystem and landscape in Taiwan after natural disturbances in recent years. In this study, a pioneering research is accomplished by using Landscape Indices (LI) derived from FORMOSAT II Satellite imagery and GIS spatial coverage to describe the possible pattern of change between landscape and ecology. Located at the mountainous area in central Taiwan, ranging from 800 to 1,800 meter and comprising 2,349 hectares in size, Sitou Tract of the National Taiwan University Experimental Forest is selected as the study site. Four satellite images through 2004 to 2007 are used to compute LI, and analyzed with ecological investigation collected from five ground sites. The preliminary result shows that by using remotely sensed data and ground investigation, it is feasible to monitor and assess the relationship between change of landscape and ecology in forests. It indicates that the recovery and restoration of vegetation after the human and natural disturbances highly correlates with the value of NDVI (Normalized Differential Vegetation Index), the composition and diversity of birds and insects are highly correlated with the diversity of patches. The values of SHDI (Shannon Diversity Index), SIDI (Simpson Diversity Index), SHEI (Shannon Evenness Index) and SIEI (Simpson Evenness Index) show that the diversity of landscape is growing while the evenness of landscape remains stable between 2004 and 2007. The ecological investigation in 2006 and 2007 indicated that the species and relative abundance is decreasing. The proof for the obvious relationship between the change of ecology and landscape metrics

  18. Unmanned Aircraft Systems complement biologging in spatial ecology studies.

    PubMed

    Mulero-Pázmány, Margarita; Barasona, Jose Ángel; Acevedo, Pelayo; Vicente, Joaquín; Negro, Juan José

    2015-11-01

    The knowledge about the spatial ecology and distribution of organisms is important for both basic and applied science. Biologging is one of the most popular methods for obtaining information about spatial distribution of animals, but requires capturing the animals and is often limited by costs and data retrieval. Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) have proven their efficacy for wildlife surveillance and habitat monitoring, but their potential contribution to the prediction of animal distribution patterns and abundance has not been thoroughly evaluated. In this study, we assess the usefulness of UAS overflights to (1) get data to model the distribution of free-ranging cattle for a comparison with results obtained from biologged (GPS-GSM collared) cattle and (2) predict species densities for a comparison with actual density in a protected area. UAS and biologging derived data models provided similar distribution patterns. Predictions from the UAS model overestimated cattle densities, which may be associated with higher aggregated distributions of this species. Overall, while the particular researcher interests and species characteristics will influence the method of choice for each study, we demonstrate here that UAS constitute a noninvasive methodology able to provide accurate spatial data useful for ecological research, wildlife management and rangeland planning.

  19. Toward Guidelines for Population-level Ecological Risk Assessment: Results of a U.S. EPA Risk Assessment Forum Workshop

    EPA Science Inventory

    The choice of levels of biological organization reflected in ecological risk assessment (ERA) is receiving increasing attention. Most ERAs conducted for chemicals by the U.S. EPA, and indeed by most organizations worldwide, focus on organism-level attributes (e.g., survival, gro...

  20. A Critical Review of Some Ecological Studies on Scientific Journals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yamazaki, Shigeaki

    There have been hot discussions about the number and the rate of growth of scientific journals. The purpose of this review is intended to provide a critical assessment of those ecological studies on scientific journals. In 1961, Price presented his famous graph curve, and noted that rate of growth of journals had been fairly consisted at 5 per cent annum for nearly 300 years. But Price's graph curve has some primary error, and the author suggest to examine carefully his study. There is another problem that the loose definition of scientific journals is used. The author try to give a clear definition on the term ‘scientific journals’, and try to reestimate historically the growth rate in numbers of current scientific journals, referring several reliable studies previously conducted. The Author's estimation is about 1.85 per cent a year from the last of 18 century.

  1. ELF communications system ecological monitoring program: Aquatic ecosystem studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burton, Thomas M.; Stout, R. J.; Winterstein, Scott; Coon, Thomas; Novinger, Doug

    1994-11-01

    The U.S. Navy has completed a program that monitored biota and ecological miationships for possible effects from electromagnetic (EM) fields produced by its Extremely Low Frequency (ELF) Communications System. This report documents the results and conclusions of aquatic studies conducted near its transmitting antenna in Michigan. From 1982 through 1993 researchers from the Michigan State University (MSU) monitored aquatic flora and fauna on matched reaches of the Ford River. A treatment site was located immediately adjacent to the antenna, whereas a control site was situated at a distance downstream. Functional and structural components of the periphyton, insect, and fish communities were monitored. The research team also measured ambient factors such as temperature, discharge, and water quality indicators. Data were analyzed using a variety of statistical tests; however, BACI techniques were emphasized. Results indicated a relative increase in algal biomass at the treatment site after the antenna became fully operational, but no changes in any other parameter or organism. MSU concludes that algal biomass was affected by ELF EM exposure. Since neither the other ecological characteristics of the periphyton nor the insect and fish communities showed any effects, MSU infers little EM impact to riverine habitats.

  2. Level and ecological risk of four common metals in surface water along the Qinhuangdao coastal areas, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Liping; Lei, Kun; Qiao, Yanzhen; Hao, Chenlin

    2017-01-01

    Heavy metals have been a widespread environmental contamination. Due to their associated ecological risk, the presence in water environment has attracted broad attention to public. Here 4 most common metals including copper (Cu), lead (Pb), cadmium (Cd) and zinc (Zn) were determined in surface water along the Qinhuangdao coastal areas, China. And their ecological risk was assessed using species sensitivity distribution (SSD) method. Total 12 stations were designed near the main estuary in the study area. The results showed that the concentrations of Cu, Pb, Cd and Zn of surface water were in the range of 847.81-1602.81µg/L, 0.42-1.59µg/L, 1.82-7.99µg/L and 26.9 -59.36µg/L, respectively. According to the National Seawater Quality Standard of China (GB3097-1997), Cu concentration in each station was much higher than the standard value of IV level (50µg/L), thus Cu could not even met the lowest level of water quality. In contrast, Pb met the I or II level of water quality, Cd and Zn met the II or III level. The HC5 (hazardous concentration for 5% of species) of each metal was obtained from their corresponding SSD curve. In case of Cu and Zn, the concentration at all sites exceeded their HC5 values, suggesting both of them had adverse effect on the aquatic organism, especially Cu. While Pb concentration at all sites was much lower than its HC5 value, thus Pb had no negative effect on aquatic life. In case of Cd, the concentration at 5 sites was higher than its HC5 value, and the other 7 sites was lower than its HC5 value, suggesting that adverse effect only occur at partial region in the study area. The RQ (risk quotient) value of Cu varied between 1355.41 and 2621.28, far larger than 1, indicating that 100% of sites had a much higher risk. The RQ of Zn varied between 6.06 and 13.88 (>1) indicating that Zn had a high risk in the study area. In case of Cd, the RQ ranged from 0.94 to 4.41 and about 92% of sites were larger than 1, suggesting that Cd had a high risk

  3. Using ecology to inform physiology studies: implications of high population density in the laboratory.

    PubMed

    Newman, Amy E M; Edmunds, Nicholas B; Ferraro, Shannon; Heffell, Quentin; Merritt, Gillian M; Pakkala, Jesse J; Schilling, Cory R; Schorno, Sarah

    2015-03-15

    Conspecific density is widely recognized as an important ecological factor across the animal kingdom; however, the physiological impacts are less thoroughly described. In fact, population density is rarely mentioned as a factor in physiological studies on captive animals and, when it is infrequently addressed, the animals used are reared and housed at densities far above those in nature, making the translation of results from the laboratory to natural systems difficult. We survey the literature to highlight this important ecophysiological gap and bring attention to the possibility that conspecific density prior to experimentation may be a critical factor influencing results. Across three taxa: mammals, birds, and fish, we present evidence from ecology that density influences glucocorticoid levels, immune function, and body condition with the intention of stimulating discussion and increasing consideration of population density in physiology studies. We conclude with several directives to improve the applicability of insights gained in the laboratory to organisms in the natural environment.

  4. Packaging and distributing ecological data from multisite studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Olson, R. J.; Voorhees, L. D.; Field, J. M.; Gentry, M. J.

    1996-01-01

    Studies of global change and other regional issues depend on ecological data collected at multiple study areas or sites. An information system model is proposed for compiling diverse data from dispersed sources so that the data are consistent, complete, and readily available. The model includes investigators who collect and analyze field measurements, science teams that synthesize data, a project information system that collates data, a data archive center that distributes data to secondary users, and a master data directory that provides broader searching opportunities. Special attention to format consistency is required, such as units of measure, spatial coordinates, dates, and notation for missing values. Often data may need to be enhanced by estimating missing values, aggregating to common temporal units, or adding other related data such as climatic and soils data. Full documentation, an efficient data distribution mechanism, and an equitable way to acknowledge the original source of data are also required.

  5. Ecological and sociological considerations of wind energy: A multidisciplinary study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bicknell, Lucas John

    Wind energy is quickly becoming a critical technology for providing Americans with renewable energy, and rapid construction of wind facilities may have impacts on both wildlife and human communities. Understanding both the social and ecological issues related to wind energy development could provide a framework for effectively meeting human energy needs while conserving species biodiversity. In this research I looked at two aspects of wind energy development: public attitudes toward wind energy development and wind facility impacts on local bat populations. These papers present aspects of wind energy development that have been the subject of increasing study. This preliminary research is intended to demonstrate the responsibility we have to making well-informed decisions as we continue to expand wind energy development. Additionally, I hope to generate interest in interdisciplinary study as a means to broaden the scope of research by making use of the diverse tools available within different disciplines.

  6. Dog Ecology and Population Studies in Lagos State, Nigeria

    PubMed Central

    Hambolu, Sunday E.; Dzikwi, Asabe A.; Kwaga, Jacob K.P.; Kazeem, Haruna M.; Umoh, Jarlath U.; Hambolu, Dupe A.

    2014-01-01

    Dog population dynamics have a major impact upon the effectiveness of rabies control strategies. As such, understanding domestic dog ecology has been recognized as central to the design of effective rabies control programmes. This study was conducted to determine the dog ecology in Lagos State using compound dog count and street dog count in the three senatorial districts (Lagos West, East and Central) of Lagos State from February, 2011 to January, 2012. A total of 546 questionnaires were distributed for the compound dog count and all were completed and returned. Various aspects of dog ecology were determined, including size, sex, breed of the dog population, management of dogs and rabies awareness among the respondents. Out of the 546 compounds surveyed, 518 (94.87%) owned at least one dog. A total of 1,427 dogs were counted from the street counts while a total of 1,447 dogs (2.8 dogs/compound) were counted from the compound count. The dogs comprised of 583 males and 864 females, out of which 64.10% are confined. The dog vaccination coverage in the dog population surveyed was 64.10% and administered majorly (91.30%) by veterinarians. Security (60%) and pets (26%) were the major reasons for keeping dogs. Majority (88.80%) of the respondents were aware of rabies and its mode of transmission, but still believed in the use of concoctions (40.40%), herbs (19.90%) and consumption of the organ of the offending dog (11.50%) for the treatment of rabies. The findings of this study showed a male: female ratio of dog to be 1:1.5 and a dog: human ratio of 1:5.6. There was also a responsible dog ownership as majority of the respondents do confine, vaccinate and provide food for their dogs. Vaccination coverage of the total dog population was however below the 70-80% target recommended by the World Health Organization to achieve herd immunity. PMID:24576383

  7. The legacy of Biosphere 2 for the study of biospherics and closed ecological systems.

    PubMed

    Allen, J P; Nelson, M; Alling, A

    2003-01-01

    The unprecedented challenges of creating Biosphere 2, the world's first laboratory for biospherics, the study of global ecology and long-term closed ecological system dynamics, led to breakthrough developments in many fields, and a deeper understanding of the opportunities and difficulties of material closure. This paper will review accomplishments and challenges, citing some of the key research findings and publications that have resulted from the experiments in Biosphere 2. Engineering accomplishments included development of a technique for variable volume to deal with pressure differences between the facility and outside environment, developing methods of atmospheric leak detection and sealing, while achieving new standards of closure, with an annual atmospheric leakrate of less than 10%, or less than 300 ppm per day. This degree of closure permitted detailed tracking of carbon dioxide, oxygen, and trace gases such as nitrous oxide and ethylene over the seasonal variability of two years. Full closure also necessitated developing new approaches and technologies for complete air, water, and wastewater recycle and reuse within the facility. The development of a soil-based highly productive agricultural system was a first in closed ecological systems, and much was learned about managing a wide variety of crops using non-chemical means of pest and disease control. Closed ecological systems have different temporal biogeochemical cycling and ranges of atmospheric components because of their smaller reservoirs of air, water and soil, and higher concentration of biomass, and Biosphere 2 provided detailed examination and modeling of these accelerated cycles over a period of closure which measured in years. Medical research inside Biosphere 2 included the effects on humans of lowered oxygen: the discovery that human productivity can be maintained with good health with lowered atmospheric oxygen levels could lead to major economies on the design of space stations and

  8. The legacy of biosphere 2 for the study of biospherics and closed ecological systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allen, J. P.; Nelson, M.; Alling, A.

    The unprecedented challenges of creating Biosphere 2, the world's first laboratory for biospherics, the study of global ecology and long-term closed ecological system dynamics, led to breakthrough developments in many fields, and a deeper understanding of the opportunities and difficulties of material closure. This paper will review accomplishments and challenges, citing some of the key research findings and publications that have resulted from the experiments in Biosphere 2. Engineering accomplishments included development of a technique for variable volume to deal with pressure differences between the facility and outside environment, developing methods of atmospheric leak detection and sealing, while achieving new standards of closure, with an annual atmospheric leakrate of less than 10%, or less than 300 ppm per day. This degree of closure permitted detailed tracking of carbon dioxide, oxygen, and trice gases such as nitrous oxide and ethylene over the seasonal variability of two years. Full closure also necessitated developing new approaches and technologies for complete air, water, and wastewater recycle and reuse within the facility. The development of a soil-based highly productive agricultural system was a first in closed ecological systems, and much was learned about managing a wide variety of crops using non-chemical means of pest and disease control. Closed ecological systems have different temporal biogeochemical cycling and ranges of atmospheric components because of their smaller reservoirs of air, water and soil, and higher concentration of biomass, and Biosphere 2 provided detailed examination and modeling of these accelerated cycles over a period of closure which measured in years. Medical research inside Biosphere 2 included the effects on humans of lowered oxygen: the discovery that human productivity can be maintained with good health with lowered atmospheric oxygen levels could lead to major economies on the design of space stations and

  9. Association Between Air Temperature and Cancer Death Rates in Florida: An Ecological Study.

    PubMed

    Hart, John

    2015-01-01

    Proponents of global warming predict adverse events due to a slight warming of the planet in the last 100 years. This ecological study tests one of the possible arguments that might support the global warming theory - that it may increase cancer death rates. Thus, average daily air temperature is compared to cancer death rates at the county level in a U.S. state, while controlling for variables of smoking, race, and land elevation. The study revealed that lower cancer death rates were associated with warmer temperatures. Further study is indicated to verify these findings.

  10. Ecological momentary assessment (EMA) in studies of substance use.

    PubMed

    Shiffman, Saul

    2009-12-01

    Ecological momentary assessment (EMA) is particularly suitable for studying substance use, because use is episodic and thought to be related to mood and context. This article reviews EMA methods in substance use research, focusing on tobacco and alcohol use and relapse, where EMA has been most applied. Common EMA designs combine event-based reports of substance use with time-based assessments. Approaches to data organization and analysis have been very diverse, particularly regarding their treatment of time. Compliance with signaled assessments is often high. Compliance with recording of substance use appears good but is harder to validate. Treatment applications of EMA are emerging. EMA captures substance use patterns not measured by questionnaires or retrospective data and holds promise for substance use research.

  11. Lab experiments for the study of social-ecological systems.

    PubMed

    Janssen, Marco A; Holahan, Robert; Lee, Allen; Ostrom, Elinor

    2010-04-30

    Governance of social-ecological systems is a major policy problem of the contemporary era. Field studies of fisheries, forests, and pastoral and water resources have identified many variables that influence the outcomes of governance efforts. We introduce an experimental environment that involves spatial and temporal resource dynamics in order to capture these two critical variables identified in field research. Previous behavioral experiments of commons dilemmas have found that people are willing to engage in costly punishment, frequently generating increases in gross benefits, contrary to game-theoretical predictions based on a static pay-off function. Results in our experimental environment find that costly punishment is again used but lacks a gross positive effect on resource harvesting unless combined with communication. These findings illustrate the importance of careful generalization from the laboratory to the world of policy.

  12. Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) in Studies of Substance Use

    PubMed Central

    Shiffman, Saul

    2010-01-01

    Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) is particularly suitable for studying substance use, because use is episodic and thought to be related to mood and context. This paper reviews EMA methods in substance use research, focusing on tobacco and alcohol use and relapse, where EMA has most been applied. Common EMA designs combine event-based reports of substance use with time-based assessments. Approaches to data organization and analysis have been very diverse, particularly regarding their treatment of time. Compliance with signaled assessments is often high. Compliance with recording of substance use appears good, but is harder to validate. Treatment applications of EMA are emerging. EMA captures substance use patterns not measured by questionnaires or retrospective data, and hold promise for substance use research. PMID:19947783

  13. Effect of hypoxia and anoxia on invertebrate behaviour: ecological perspectives from species to community level

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riedel, B.; Pados, T.; Pretterebner, K.; Schiemer, L.; Steckbauer, A.; Haselmair, A.; Zuschin, M.; Stachowitsch, M.

    2014-03-01

    Coastal hypoxia and anoxia have become a global key stressor to marine ecosystems, with almost 500 dead zones recorded worldwide. By triggering cascading effects from the individual organism to the community- and ecosystem level, oxygen depletions threaten marine biodiversity and can alter ecosystem structure and function. By integrating both physiological function and ecological processes, animal behaviour is ideal for assessing the stress state of benthic macrofauna to low dissolved oxygen. The initial response of organisms can serve as an early warning signal, while the successive behavioural reactions of key species indicate hypoxia levels and help assess community degradation. Here we document the behavioural responses of a representative spectrum of benthic macrofauna in the natural setting in the Northern Adriatic Sea (Mediterranean). We experimentally induced small-scale anoxia with a benthic chamber in 24 m depth to overcome the difficulties in predicting the onset of hypoxia, which often hinders full documentation in the field. The behavioural reactions were documented with a time-lapse camera. Oxygen depletion elicited significant and repeatable changes in general (visibility, locomotion, body movement and posture, location) and species-specific reactions in virtually all organisms (302 individuals from 32 species and 2 species groups). Most atypical (stress) behaviours were associated with specific oxygen thresholds: arm-tipping in the ophiuroid Ophiothrix quinquemaculata, for example, with the onset of mild hypoxia (< 2 mL O2 L-1), the emergence of polychaetes on the sediment surface with moderate hypoxia (< 1 mL O2 L-1), the emergence of the infaunal sea urchin Schizaster canaliferus on the sediment with severe hypoxia (< 0.5 mL O2 L-1) and heavy body rotations in sea anemones with anoxia. Other species changed their activity patterns, for example the circadian rhythm in the hermit crab Paguristes eremita or the bioherm-associated crab Pisidia

  14. Effect of hypoxia and anoxia on invertebrate behaviour: ecological perspectives from species to community level

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riedel, B.; Pados, T.; Pretterebner, K.; Schiemer, L.; Steckbauer, A.; Haselmair, A.; Zuschin, M.; Stachowitsch, M.

    2013-08-01

    Coastal hypoxia and anoxia have become a global key stressor to marine ecosystems, with almost 500 dead zones recorded wordwide. By triggering cascading effects from the individual organism to the community and ecosystem-level, oxygen depletions threat marine biodiversity and can alter ecosystem structure and function. By integrating both physiological function and ecological processes, animal behaviour is ideal for assessing the stress state of benthic macrofauna to low dissolved oxygen. The initial response of organisms can serve as an early-warning signal, while the successive behavioural reactions of key species indicate hypoxia levels and help assess community degradation. Here we document the behavioural responses of a representative spectrum of benthic macrofauna in the natural setting in the Northern Adriatic Sea, Mediterranean. We experimentally induced small-scale anoxia with a benthic chamber in 24 m depth to overcome the difficulties in predicting the onset of hypoxia, which often hinders full documentation in the field. The behavioural reactions were documented with a time-lapse camera. Oxygen depletion elicited significant and repeatable changes in general (visibility, locomotion, body movement and posture, location) and species-specific reactions in virtually all organisms (302 individuals from 32 species and 2 species groups). Most atypical (stress) behaviours were associated with specific oxygen thresholds: arm-tipping in the ophiuroid Ophiothrix quinquemaculata, for example, with the onset of mild hypoxia (< 2 mL O2 L-1), the emergence of polychates on the sediment surface with moderate hypoxia (< 1 mL O2 L-1), the emergence of the infaunal sea urchin Schizaster canaliferus on the sediment with severe hypoxia (< 0.5 mL O2 L-1) and heavy body rotations in sea anemones with anoxia. Other species changed their activity patterns, i.e. circadian rhythm in the hermit crab Paguristes eremita or the bioherm-associated crab Pisidia longimana. Intra- and

  15. [Applications of stable isotope analysis in the trophic ecology studies of cephalopods].

    PubMed

    Li, Yun-Kai; Gong, Yi; Chen, Xin-Jun

    2014-05-01

    Cephalopods play an important role in marine food webs, however, knowledge about their complex life history, especially their feeding ecology, remains limited. With the rapidly increasing use of stable isotope analysis (SIA) in ecology, it becomes a powerful tool and complement of traditional methods for investigating the trophic ecology and migration patterns of invertebrates. Here, after summarizing the current methods for trophic ecology investigation of cephalopods, applications of SIA in studying the trophic ecology of cephalopods were reviewed, including the key issues such as standardization of available tissues for SIA analyzing, diet shift and migration patterns of cephalopods, with the aim of advancing its application in the biology of cephalopods in the future.

  16. Comparative Study of the Natural Habitat Behaviors of Children with Autism and Children with Down Syndrome: An Ecological Approach.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ruble, Lisa Ann

    A study involving eight boys with autism and eight boys with Down syndrome (ages 6-10) with similar adaptive behavior levels used an ecological approach to study the in-depth structure of the behavior stream. Narrative records were collected and analyzed based on duration and frequency of behaviors. Each record was analyzed by marking the behavior…

  17. [Ecological compensation based on farmers' willingness: A case study of Jingsan County in Hubei Province, China].

    PubMed

    Yu, Liang-liang; Cai, Yin-ying

    2015-01-01

    Farmland protection is a pressing issue in China' s major agricultural regions because of the strategic importance of these regions for national food security. This study quantified the appropriate ecological compensation criteria for farmland protection by way of estimating farmers' opportunity cost and willingness to adopt environment-friendly farming practices. Based on survey data collected from Jingsan County, Hubei Province, a Tobit model was constructed to identify factors affecting farmers' willingness to accept (WTA). The result showed that with appropriate economic compensation for farmland protection, 77.1% and 64.7% of the surveyed households were willing to reduce usage of fertilizers and pesticides. When the reduced rates of fertilizer and pesticide increased from <10% to >50%, farmers' opportunity costs of production respectively increased from 1198 and 5850 yuan to 9698 and 9750 yuan per hectare per year, and their WTA increased from 4750 and 7313 yuan to 9781 and 12393 yuan per hectare per year. Farmers' opportunity cost and WTA in reducing pesticide inputs were larger than those in reducing the same rate of fertilizer inputs, and in each case farmers' WTA was greater than their opportunity cost. A farm' s distance from township, farmers' knowledge about the ecology of farmland, and their expectation to improve the ecological environment of farmland had positive, significant effect on the farmers' WTA to reducing fertilization, while farmers' education level and the overall economic condition of the village had significantly negative effect. The proportion of agriculture income, farmers' knowledge about the ecology of farmland, and their expectation to improve the ecological environment of farmland had positive, significant effect on the farmers' WTA to reducing pesticide, while household' cash income and the overall economic condition of the village had significantly negative effect.

  18. Discovering ecologically relevant knowledge from published studies through geosemantic searching

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    It is easier to search the globe for research on genes of a local plant or animal than to find local field research on that plant’s ecology. While internet applications can find the closest coffee shop, it is difficult to find where the nearest relevant research was conducted. As a result, ecologi...

  19. A Methodology to Evaluate Ecological Resources and Risk Using Two Case Studies at the Department of Energy's Hanford Site.

    PubMed

    Burger, Joanna; Gochfeld, Michael; Bunn, Amoret; Downs, Janelle; Jeitner, Christian; Pittfield, Taryn; Salisbury, Jennifer; Kosson, David

    2017-03-01

    An assessment of the potential risks to ecological resources from remediation activities or other perturbations should involve a quantitative evaluation of resources on the remediation site and in the surrounding environment. We developed a risk methodology to rapidly evaluate potential impact on ecological resources for the U.S. Department of Energy's Hanford Site in southcentral Washington State. We describe the application of the risk evaluation for two case studies to illustrate its applicability. The ecological assessment involves examining previous sources of information for the site, defining different resource levels from 0 to 5. We also developed a risk rating scale from non-discernable to very high. Field assessment is the critical step to determine resource levels or to determine if current conditions are the same as previously evaluated. We provide a rapid assessment method for current ecological conditions that can be compared to previous site-specific data, or that can be used to assess resource value on other sites where ecological information is not generally available. The method is applicable to other Department of Energy's sites, where its development may involve a range of state regulators, resource trustees, Tribes and other stakeholders. Achieving consistency across Department of Energy's sites for valuation of ecological resources on remediation sites will assure Congress and the public that funds and personnel are being deployed appropriately.

  20. A Methodology to Evaluate Ecological Resources and Risk Using Two Case Studies at the Department of Energy's Hanford Site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burger, Joanna; Gochfeld, Michael; Bunn, Amoret; Downs, Janelle; Jeitner, Christian; Pittfield, Taryn; Salisbury, Jennifer; Kosson, David

    2017-03-01

    An assessment of the potential risks to ecological resources from remediation activities or other perturbations should involve a quantitative evaluation of resources on the remediation site and in the surrounding environment. We developed a risk methodology to rapidly evaluate potential impact on ecological resources for the U.S. Department of Energy's Hanford Site in southcentral Washington State. We describe the application of the risk evaluation for two case studies to illustrate its applicability. The ecological assessment involves examining previous sources of information for the site, defining different resource levels from 0 to 5. We also developed a risk rating scale from non-discernable to very high. Field assessment is the critical step to determine resource levels or to determine if current conditions are the same as previously evaluated. We provide a rapid assessment method for current ecological conditions that can be compared to previous site-specific data, or that can be used to assess resource value on other sites where ecological information is not generally available. The method is applicable to other Department of Energy's sites, where its development may involve a range of state regulators, resource trustees, Tribes and other stakeholders. Achieving consistency across Department of Energy's sites for valuation of ecological resources on remediation sites will assure Congress and the public that funds and personnel are being deployed appropriately.

  1. Development of stressor-response models for an ecological risk assessment case study

    SciTech Connect

    Nacci, D.E.; Munns, W.R.; Cayula, S.; Serbst, J.; Johnston, R.K.; Walker, H.A.

    1994-12-31

    An estuarine ecological risk assessment for the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard (Kittery, ME) is being conducted following the US EPA`s Framework for Ecological Risk Assessment (ERA). As part of the Analysis phase of the ERA, laboratory studies were conducted to develop stressor-response models for lead, the primary contaminant of concern. Thirty-day exposures to adult sea urchins, Arbacia punctulata, occurred via food or suspended sediment. Exposure media were amended with lead sulfate to 10--100 or 100--300 times uncontaminated levels for the Feeding or Sediment Experiments, respectively. The sea urchin experimental model was selected because it permitted the measurement of biological endpoints with significance at the population level (e.g., adult survival and reproduction success), including those used in standard marine bioassays (i.e., fertilization and larval development). Feeding Experiment treatments produced few effects. Sediment Experiment treatments resulted in reductions in survival, growth and reproductive output of exposed adults and were directly toxic to early lifestages. However, in uncontaminated sea water, gametes from Sediment Experiment adults fertilized and completed larval development normally. Data from these experimental systems will be used to produce models relating lead exposure to specific biological responses and, ultimately, ecological risk.

  2. The need to integrate laboratory- and ecosystem-level research for assessment of the ecological impact of radiation.

    PubMed

    Bréchignac, François

    2016-10-01

    Despite the fact that the Chernobyl and Fukushima accidents have both stimulated research on the environmental impact of radiation, interpretations about the occurrence of ecological effects in the contaminated areas still do not converge. In an effort to improve the situation and progress toward better general scientific understanding of ecological impacts of radiation, reasons that may explain the disagreements and discrepancies are explored. The divergence in interpretations of the impacts from both nuclear accidents arises from differences in methodological and conceptual inference strategies (a cultural issue) more so than fundamental differences in the processes governing ecological harm. Improved integration of scientific communities that use different study approaches should be encouraged to better understand and monitor the determination of the ecological impacts of radiation. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2016;12:673-676. © 2016 SETAC.

  3. Hydrodynamic and Ecological Assessment of Nearshore Restoration: A Modeling Study

    SciTech Connect

    Yang, Zhaoqing; Sobocinski, Kathryn L.; Heatwole, Danelle W.; Khangaonkar, Tarang; Thom, Ronald M.; Fuller, Roger

    2010-04-10

    Along the Pacific Northwest coast, much of the estuarine habitat has been diked over the last century for agricultural land use, residential and commercial development, and transportation corridors. As a result, many of the ecological processes and functions have been disrupted. To protect coastal habitats that are vital to aquatic species, many restoration projects are currently underway to restore the estuarine and coastal ecosystems through dike breaches, setbacks, and removals. Information on physical processes and hydrodynamic conditions are critical for the assessment of the success of restoration actions. Restoration of a 160- acre property at the mouth of the Stillaguamish River in Puget Sound has been proposed. The goal is to restore native tidal habitats and estuary-scale ecological processes by removing the dike. In this study, a three-dimensional hydrodynamic model was developed for the Stillaguamish River estuary to simulate estuarine processes. The model was calibrated to observed tide, current, and salinity data for existing conditions and applied to simulate the hydrodynamic responses to two restoration alternatives. Responses were evaluated at the scale of the restoration footprint. Model data was combined with biophysical data to predict habitat responses at the site. Results showed that the proposed dike removal would result in desired tidal flushing and conditions that would support four habitat types on the restoration footprint. At the estuary scale, restoration would substantially increase the proportion of area flushed with freshwater (< 5 ppt) at flood tide. Potential implications of predicted changes in salinity and flow dynamics are discussed relative to the distribution of tidal marsh habitat.

  4. Understanding Children and Adolescents’ Victimizations at Multiple Levels: An Ecological Review of the Literature

    PubMed Central

    Sabri, Bushra; Hong, Jun Sung; Campbell, Jacquelyn C.; Cho, Hyunkag

    2013-01-01

    This article examines children and adolescent exposure to violence in various contexts. A systematic review of the literature was conducted to identify the definitions and types of violence reported in studies on victimization using the ecological systems framework. Sources included research studies and/or reports from scholarly journals (n = 140), books (n = 9), conference/workshops (n = 5), and web sources, such as Uniform Crime Reports (n = 23). The findings indicated that research differed in terminologies, conceptual and operational definitions, sample sizes and age group classification for children and adolescents. Further, studies lacked focus on the co-occurrence and inter-relatedness of victimization, and how these factors might affect the outcomes. Many studies employed a cross-sectional design, which limits strong conclusions about the temporal order of victimization experiences and outcomes. Future research efforts need more consistency among researchers in conceptual and operational definitions and the use of more rigorous designs. Increased holistic assessments are critical for effective prevention and intervention strategies for at-risk children and adolescents PMID:24065867

  5. [Study on ecological risk assessment technology of fluoride pollution from arid oasis soil].

    PubMed

    Xue, Su-Yin; Li, Ping; Wang, Sheng-Li; Nan, Zhong-Ren

    2014-03-01

    According to translocation regulation of fluoride in the typical oasis soil-plant system under field, an ecological risk assessment model of fluoride was established, and this model was used to assess ecological risk to fluoride pollution from suburban oasis soils in Baiyin City, which was specifically expressed with the potential ecological risk of bioavailability (ER(bc)) model to assess ecological risk of fluoride pollution in oasis regions. Results showed that the ecological risk indices of fluoride pollution from this region were 1.37-24.81, the level of risk at most sites was high to very high, the average ecological risk index was 11.28, belonged to very high risk. This indicated that in the suburb soil of Baiyin City needs to be concerned about the remediation of fluoride pollution.

  6. Investigating Cooperative Behavior in Ecological Settings: An EEG Hyperscanning Study.

    PubMed

    Toppi, Jlenia; Borghini, Gianluca; Petti, Manuela; He, Eric J; De Giusti, Vittorio; He, Bin; Astolfi, Laura; Babiloni, Fabio

    2016-01-01

    The coordinated interactions between individuals are fundamental for the success of the activities in some professional categories. We reported on brain-to-brain cooperative interactions between civil pilots during a simulated flight. We demonstrated for the first time how the combination of neuroelectrical hyperscanning and intersubject connectivity could provide indicators sensitive to the humans' degree of synchronization under a highly demanding task performed in an ecological environment. Our results showed how intersubject connectivity was able to i) characterize the degree of cooperation between pilots in different phases of the flight, and ii) to highlight the role of specific brain macro areas in cooperative behavior. During the most cooperative flight phases pilots showed, in fact, dense patterns of interbrain connectivity, mainly linking frontal and parietal brain areas. On the contrary, the amount of interbrain connections went close to zero in the non-cooperative phase. The reliability of the interbrain connectivity patterns was verified by means of a baseline condition represented by formal couples, i.e. pilots paired offline for the connectivity analysis but not simultaneously recorded during the flight. Interbrain density was, in fact, significantly higher in real couples with respect to formal couples in the cooperative flight phases. All the achieved results demonstrated how the description of brain networks at the basis of cooperation could effectively benefit from a hyperscanning approach. Interbrain connectivity was, in fact, more informative in the investigation of cooperative behavior with respect to established EEG signal processing methodologies applied at a single subject level.

  7. Investigating Cooperative Behavior in Ecological Settings: An EEG Hyperscanning Study

    PubMed Central

    Petti, Manuela; He, Eric J.; De Giusti, Vittorio; He, Bin; Astolfi, Laura; Babiloni, Fabio

    2016-01-01

    The coordinated interactions between individuals are fundamental for the success of the activities in some professional categories. We reported on brain-to-brain cooperative interactions between civil pilots during a simulated flight. We demonstrated for the first time how the combination of neuroelectrical hyperscanning and intersubject connectivity could provide indicators sensitive to the humans’ degree of synchronization under a highly demanding task performed in an ecological environment. Our results showed how intersubject connectivity was able to i) characterize the degree of cooperation between pilots in different phases of the flight, and ii) to highlight the role of specific brain macro areas in cooperative behavior. During the most cooperative flight phases pilots showed, in fact, dense patterns of interbrain connectivity, mainly linking frontal and parietal brain areas. On the contrary, the amount of interbrain connections went close to zero in the non-cooperative phase. The reliability of the interbrain connectivity patterns was verified by means of a baseline condition represented by formal couples, i.e. pilots paired offline for the connectivity analysis but not simultaneously recorded during the flight. Interbrain density was, in fact, significantly higher in real couples with respect to formal couples in the cooperative flight phases. All the achieved results demonstrated how the description of brain networks at the basis of cooperation could effectively benefit from a hyperscanning approach. Interbrain connectivity was, in fact, more informative in the investigation of cooperative behavior with respect to established EEG signal processing methodologies applied at a single subject level. PMID:27124558

  8. The industrial ecology of asset management: A case study

    SciTech Connect

    Hunsaker, D.B. Jr.; Curlee, T.R.; Ensminger, J.T.; Rivera, R.G.; Yuracko, K.L.

    1996-09-01

    Closure of materials cycles (one key goal in industrial ecology) to produces environmental and economic benefits. An interdisciplinary team of scientists and engineers at ORNL developed a life-cycle approach to examine the environmental and economic aspects of using purchased metal boxes for disposal of low-level radioactive waste vs a proposed process of fabricating boxes from metal already contaminated and destined for disposal as LLRW. This proposal would plug a leak in the steel materials cycle in which steel is removed from the commercial cycle for permanent disposal with LLRW. It was found that fabricating boxes out of the contaminated metal could (1)result in a direct savings of $80 million over prompt total disposal of the metal; (2)add an additional 100 jobs and about $10M/year to the regional economy compared to direct disposal; (3) result in lower particulate matter and SO{sub 2} emissions; (4) face reduced regulatory barriers; and (5)face public acceptance issues in local communities due to perceptions of risk from private sector metal recycling operations.

  9. Inferential consequences of modeling rather than measuring snow accumulation in studies of animal ecology

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cross, Faul C.; Klaver, Robert W.; Brennan, Angela; Creel, Scott; Beckmann, Jon P.; Higgs, Megan D.; Scurlock, Brandon M.

    2013-01-01

    Abstract. It is increasingly common for studies of animal ecology to use model-based predictions of environmental variables as explanatory or predictor variables, even though model prediction uncertainty is typically unknown. To demonstrate the potential for misleading inferences when model predictions with error are used in place of direct measurements, we compared snow water equivalent (SWE) and snow depth as predicted by the Snow Data Assimilation System (SNODAS) to field measurements of SWE and snow depth. We examined locations on elk (Cervus canadensis) winter ranges in western Wyoming, because modeled data such as SNODAS output are often used for inferences on elk ecology. Overall, SNODAS predictions tended to overestimate field measurements, prediction uncertainty was high, and the difference between SNODAS predictions and field measurements was greater in snow shadows for both snow variables compared to non-snow shadow areas. We used a simple simulation of snow effects on the probability of an elk being killed by a predator to show that, if SNODAS prediction uncertainty was ignored, we might have mistakenly concluded that SWE was not an important factor in where elk were killed in predatory attacks during the winter. In this simulation, we were interested in the effects of snow at finer scales (2) than the resolution of SNODAS. If bias were to decrease when SNODAS predictions are averaged over coarser scales, SNODAS would be applicable to population-level ecology studies. In our study, however, averaging predictions over moderate to broad spatial scales (9–2200 km2) did not reduce the differences between SNODAS predictions and field measurements. This study highlights the need to carefully evaluate two issues when using model output as an explanatory variable in subsequent analysis: (1) the model’s resolution relative to the scale of the ecological question of interest and (2) the implications of prediction uncertainty on inferences when using model

  10. Inferential consequences of modeling rather than measuring snow accumulation in studies of animal ecology.

    PubMed

    Brennan, Angela; Cross, Paul C; Higgs, Megan; Beckmann, Jon P; Klaver, Robert W; Scurlock, Brandon M; Creel, Scott

    2013-04-01

    It is increasingly common for studies of animal ecology to use model-based predictions of environmental variables as explanatory or predictor variables, even though model prediction uncertainty is typically unknown. To demonstrate the potential for misleading inferences when model predictions with error are used in place of direct measurements, we compared snow water equivalent (SWE) and snow depth as predicted by the Snow Data Assimilation System (SNODAS) to field measurements of SWE and snow depth. We examined locations on elk (Cervus canadensis) winter ranges in western Wyoming, because modeled data such as SNODAS output are often used for inferences on elk ecology. Overall, SNODAS predictions tended to overestimate field measurements, prediction uncertainty was high, and the difference between SNODAS predictions and field measurements was greater in snow shadows for both snow variables compared to non-snow shadow areas. We used a simple simulation of snow effects on the probability of an elk being killed by a predator to show that, if SNODAS prediction uncertainty was ignored, we might have mistakenly concluded that SWE was not an important factor in where elk were killed in predatory attacks during the winter. In this simulation, we were interested in the effects of snow at finer scales (< 1 km2) than the resolution of SNODAS. If bias were to decrease when SNODAS predictions are averaged over coarser scales, SNODAS would be applicable to population-level ecology studies. In our study, however, averaging predictions over moderate to broad spatial scales (9-2200 km2) did not reduce the differences between SNODAS predictions and field measurements. This study highlights the need to carefully evaluate two issues when using model output as an explanatory variable in subsequent analysis: (1) the model's resolution relative to the scale of the ecological question of interest and (2) the implications of prediction uncertainty on inferences when using model predictions

  11. Relationships between black tea consumption and key health indicators in the world: an ecological study

    PubMed Central

    Beresniak, Ariel; Duru, Gerard; Berger, Genevieve; Bremond-Gignac, Dominique

    2012-01-01

    Objectives The aim of this study was to investigate potential statistical relationships between black tea consumption and key health indicators in the world. The research question is: Does tea consumption is correlated with one or more epidemiological indicators? Design Ecological study using a systematic data-mining approach in which the unit of the analysis is a population of one country. Setting Six variables, black tea consumption data and prevalence data of respiratory diseases, infectious diseases, cancer, cardiovascular diseases and diabetes, have been studied at a global level. Participants Data from 50 participating countries in the World Health Survey were investigated. Primary and secondary outcomes measures Level of statistical relationships between variables. Results Principal component analysis established a very high contribution of the black tea consumption parameter on the third axis (81%). The correlation circle confirmed that the ‘black tea’ vector was negatively correlated with the diabetes vector and was not correlated with any of the other four health indicators. A linear correlation model then confirmed a significant statistical correlation between high black tea consumption and low diabetes prevalence. Conclusions This innovative study establishes a linear statistical correlation between high black tea consumption and low diabetes prevalence in the world. These results are consistent with biological and physiological studies conducted on the effect of black tea on diabetes and confirm the results of a previous ecological study in Europe. Further epidemiological research and randomised studies are necessary to investigate the causality. PMID:23138107

  12. The pros and cons of ecological risk assessment based on data from different levels of biological organization.

    PubMed

    Rohr, Jason R; Salice, Christopher J; Nisbet, Roger M

    2016-10-01

    Ecological risk assessment (ERA) is the process used to evaluate the safety of manufactured chemicals to the environment. Here we review the pros and cons of ERA across levels of biological organization, including suborganismal (e.g., biomarkers), individual, population, community, ecosystem and landscapes levels. Our review revealed that level of biological organization is often related negatively with ease at assessing cause-effect relationships, ease of high-throughput screening of large numbers of chemicals (it is especially easier for suborganismal endpoints), and uncertainty of the ERA because low levels of biological organization tend to have a large distance between their measurement (what is quantified) and assessment endpoints (what is to be protected). In contrast, level of biological organization is often related positively with sensitivity to important negative and positive feedbacks and context dependencies within biological systems, and ease at capturing recovery from adverse contaminant effects. Some endpoints did not show obvious trends across levels of biological organization, such as the use of vertebrate animals in chemical testing and ease at screening large numbers of species, and other factors lacked sufficient data across levels of biological organization, such as repeatability, variability, cost per study and cost per species of effects assessment, the latter of which might be a more defensible way to compare costs of ERAs than cost per study. To compensate for weaknesses of ERA at any particular level of biological organization, we also review mathematical modeling approaches commonly used to extrapolate effects across levels of organization. Finally, we provide recommendations for next generation ERA, submitting that if there is an ideal level of biological organization to conduct ERA, it will only emerge if ERA is approached simultaneously from the bottom of biological organization up as well as from the top down, all while employing

  13. Assessing the regional ecological security: methodology and a case study for the western Jilin Province, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Xiaoyan; Xue, Linfu; Wang, Xikui

    2008-10-01

    Ecological security can be investigated in both broad sense and narrow sense. Because of the wide area and regional discrepancy in influencing factors and ecological background, the investigation on regional environment hasn't been done systematically. Assessment on regional security in fragile region is important content of sustainable development. The western Jilin Province lines in the semi-arid agro-pastoral interweaving belt (APIB),within which agriculture and animal husbandry interplay or frequently alternate with each other. Study on the regional ecological security of this region offer the scientific support for protecting the regional environment and sustainability. This article set up the Pressure-State-Response model according to the interaction between human and environmental system, and assessed the ecological safety degree in the western part of Jilin Province in year 2000, using compound model and Grid method based on GIS and RS. The Ecological Security Index (ESI) was calculated by multilayer synthesis with liner weighting function method, which divided the area into the following five different conditions: highly damaged, moderately damaged, early stages of damage, relative safely, and safety, regarding change of environmental key point as the threshold value that varied under the stress of human activity. The results show that eco-environment in study area is at medial level. The early stage of damage and relative safely level occupies the largest area proportion accounting for 68.61%. Furthermore, the condition in the eastern part is better than that of the western part and the most serious degradation is found in the middle part of the study area. When talking about the ten counties in the region, highly damaged area accounts for a very small percentage. The county that has the widest area of relatively secured area is Qian'an, and that of the smallest is Da'an. The areas of highly damaged area in Tongyu, Zhenlai and Da'an have exceeded 10% and

  14. Organism and population-level ecological models for chemical risk assessment

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecological risk assessment typically focuses on animal populations as endpoints for regulatory ecotoxicology. Scientists at USEPA are developing models for animal populations exposed to a wide range of chemicals from pesticides to emerging contaminants. Modeled taxa include aquat...

  15. Ecological genomics meets community-level modelling of biodiversity: mapping the genomic landscape of current and future environmental adaptation.

    PubMed

    Fitzpatrick, Matthew C; Keller, Stephen R

    2015-01-01

    Local adaptation is a central feature of most species occupying spatially heterogeneous environments, and may factor critically in responses to environmental change. However, most efforts to model the response of species to climate change ignore intraspecific variation due to local adaptation. Here, we present a new perspective on spatial modelling of organism-environment relationships that combines genomic data and community-level modelling to develop scenarios regarding the geographic distribution of genomic variation in response to environmental change. Rather than modelling species within communities, we use these techniques to model large numbers of loci across genomes. Using balsam poplar (Populus balsamifera) as a case study, we demonstrate how our framework can accommodate nonlinear responses of loci to environmental gradients. We identify a threshold response to temperature in the circadian clock gene GIGANTEA-5 (GI5), suggesting that this gene has experienced strong local adaptation to temperature. We also demonstrate how these methods can map ecological adaptation from genomic data, including the identification of predicted differences in the genetic composition of populations under current and future climates. Community-level modelling of genomic variation represents an important advance in landscape genomics and spatial modelling of biodiversity that moves beyond species-level assessments of climate change vulnerability.

  16. ECOLOGIC STUDY OF MESOSCALE ENVIRONMENTS WITH EXCESS DISEASE PREVALENCE

    EPA Science Inventory

    This work employs an ecologic epidemiological approach to assess the relationship between environmental stressors and excess disease prevalence in small communities. Specifically, the childhood leukemia cluster in Fallon Nevada is used as an example; heavy metals (tungsten and c...

  17. Controlled Ecological Life Support Systems (CELSS) conceptual design option study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oleson, Melvin; Olson, Richard L.

    1986-01-01

    Results are given of a study to explore options for the development of a Controlled Ecological Life Support System (CELSS) for a future Space Station. In addition, study results will benefit the design of other facilities such as the Life Sciences Research Facility, a ground-based CELSS demonstrator, and will be useful in planning longer range missions such as a lunar base or manned Mars mission. The objectives were to develop weight and cost estimates for one CELSS module selected from a set of preliminary plant growth unit (PGU) design options. Eleven Space Station CELSS module conceptual PGU designs were reviewed, components and subsystems identified and a sensitivity analysis performed. Areas where insufficient data is available were identified and divided into the categories of biological research, engineering research, and technology development. Topics which receive significant attention are lighting systems for the PGU, the use of automation within the CELSS system, and electric power requirements. Other areas examined include plant harvesting and processing, crop mix analysis, air circulation and atmosphere contaminant flow subsystems, thermal control considerations, utility routing including accessibility and maintenance, and nutrient subsystem design.

  18. Distance makes the difference in thermography for ecological studies.

    PubMed

    Faye, E; Dangles, O; Pincebourde, S

    2016-02-01

    Surface temperature drives many ecological processes and infrared thermography is widely used by ecologists to measure the thermal heterogeneity of different species' habitats. However, the potential bias in temperature readings caused by distance between the surface to be measured and the camera is still poorly acknowledged. We examined the effect of distance from 0.3 to 80m on a variety of thermal metrics (mean temperature, standard deviation, patch richness and aggregation) under various weather conditions and for different structural complexity of the studied surface types (various surfaces with vegetation). We found that distance is a key modifier of the temperature measured by a thermal infrared camera. A non-linear relationship between distance and mean temperature, standard deviation and patch richness led to a rapid under-estimation of the thermal metrics within the first 20m and then only a slight decrease between 20 and 80m from the object. Solar radiation also enhanced the bias with increasing distance. Therefore, surface temperatures were under-estimated as distance increased and thermal mosaics were homogenized at long distances with a much stronger bias in the warmer than the colder parts of the distributions. The under-estimation of thermal metrics due to distance was explained by atmospheric composition and the pixel size effect. The structural complexity of the surface had little effect on the surface temperature bias. Finally, we provide general guidelines for ecologists to minimize inaccuracies caused by distance from the studied surface in thermography.

  19. Genetic and ecological studies of animals in Chernobyl and Fukushima.

    PubMed

    Mousseau, Timothy A; Møller, Anders P

    2014-01-01

    Recent advances in genetic and ecological studies of wild animal populations in Chernobyl and Fukushima have demonstrated significant genetic, physiological, developmental, and fitness effects stemming from exposure to radioactive contaminants. The few genetic studies that have been conducted in Chernobyl generally show elevated rates of genetic damage and mutation rates. All major taxonomic groups investigated (i.e., birds, bees, butterflies, grasshoppers, dragonflies, spiders, mammals) displayed reduced population sizes in highly radioactive parts of the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. In Fukushima, population censuses of birds, butterflies, and cicadas suggested that abundances were negatively impacted by exposure to radioactive contaminants, while other groups (e.g., dragonflies, grasshoppers, bees, spiders) showed no significant declines, at least during the first summer following the disaster. Insufficient information exists for groups other than insects and birds to assess effects on life history at this time. The differences observed between Fukushima and Chernobyl may reflect the different times of exposure and the significance of multigenerational mutation accumulation in Chernobyl compared to Fukushima. There was considerable variation among taxa in their apparent sensitivity to radiation and this reflects in part life history, physiology, behavior, and evolutionary history. Interestingly, for birds, population declines in Chernobyl can be predicted by historical mitochondrial DNA base-pair substitution rates that may reflect intrinsic DNA repair ability.

  20. Ecological study of dietary and smoking links to lymphoma

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grant, W. B.

    2000-01-01

    The ecological approach is used to investigate dietary and smoking links to lymphoma. International mortality rate data for 1986 and 1994 by gender and age group are compared with national dietary supply values of various food components for up to 10 years prior to the mortality data as well as per capita cigarette consumption rates 5 and 15 years earlier. The non-fat portion of milk, 3-9 years prior to the 1986 mortality data and 4 years prior to the 1994 data, was found to have the highest association with lymphoma, with r as high as 0.89. The results imply that 70 percent of lymphoma mortality may be related to this dietary component. Cigarette smoking in 1980 was found to have a weaker association with 1994 lymphoma mortality rates, being most important for younger men and statistically insignificant for younger women. The non-fat milk result is consistent with both case-control studies and a Norwegian prospective study, and with the often-observed finding that abnormal calcium metabolism, hypercalciuria, and dysregulated calcitriol production are common in normocalcemic patients with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL). It is hypothesized that excess dietary calcium from milk is a significant risk factor for lymphoma.

  1. Eye-Size Variability in Deep-Sea Lanternfishes (Myctophidae): An Ecological and Phylogenetic Study

    PubMed Central

    de Busserolles, Fanny; Fitzpatrick, John L.; Paxton, John R.; Marshall, N. Justin; Collin, Shaun P.

    2013-01-01

    One of the most common visual adaptations seen in the mesopelagic zone (200–1000 m), where the amount of light diminishes exponentially with depth and where bioluminescent organisms predominate, is the enlargement of the eye and pupil area. However, it remains unclear how eye size is influenced by depth, other environmental conditions and phylogeny. In this study, we determine the factors influencing variability in eye size and assess whether this variability is explained by ecological differences in habitat and lifestyle within a family of mesopelagic fishes characterized by broad intra- and interspecific variance in depth range and luminous patterns. We focus our study on the lanternfish family (Myctophidae) and hypothesise that lanternfishes with a deeper distribution and/or a reduction of bioluminescent emissions have smaller eyes and that ecological factors rather than phylogenetic relationships will drive the evolution of the visual system. Eye diameter and standard length were measured in 237 individuals from 61 species of lanternfishes representing all the recognised tribes within the family in addition to compiling an ecological dataset including depth distribution during night and day and the location and sexual dimorphism of luminous organs. Hypotheses were tested by investigating the relationship between the relative size of the eye (corrected for body size) and variations in depth and/or patterns of luminous-organs using phylogenetic comparative analyses. Results show a great variability in relative eye size within the Myctophidae at all taxonomic levels (from subfamily to genus), suggesting that this character may have evolved several times. However, variability in eye size within the family could not be explained by any of our ecological variables (bioluminescence and depth patterns), and appears to be driven solely by phylogenetic relationships. PMID:23472203

  2. Migration intensity has no effect on peak HIV prevalence: an ecological study

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Correctly identifying the determinants of generalized HIV epidemics is crucial to bringing down ongoing high HIV incidence in these countries. High rates of migration are believed to be an important determinant of HIV prevalence. This study has two aims. Firstly, it evaluates the ecological association between levels of internal and international migration and national peak HIV prevalence using thirteen variables from a variety of sources to capture various aspects of internal and international migration intensity. Secondly, it examines the relationship between circular migration and HIV at an individual and population-level in South Africa. Methods Linear regression was used to analyze the association between the various measures of migration intensity and peak national HIV prevalence for 141 countries and HIV prevalence by province and ethnic group in South Africa. Results No evidence of a positive ecological association between national migration intensity and HIV prevalence was found. This remained the case when the analyses were limited to the countries of sub-Saharan Africa. On the whole, countries with generalized HIV epidemics had lower rates of internal and external migration. Likewise, no association was found between migration and HIV positivity at an individual or group-level in South Africa. Conclusion These results do not support the thesis that migration measured at the country level plays a significant role in determining peak HIV prevalence. PMID:24961725

  3. Correlates between feeding ecology and mercury levels in historical and modern arctic foxes (Vulpes lagopus).

    PubMed

    Bocharova, Natalia; Treu, Gabriele; Czirják, Gábor Árpád; Krone, Oliver; Stefanski, Volker; Wibbelt, Gudrun; Unnsteinsdóttir, Ester Rut; Hersteinsson, Páll; Schares, Gereon; Doronina, Lilia; Goltsman, Mikhail; Greenwood, Alex D

    2013-01-01

    Changes in concentration of pollutants and pathogen distribution can vary among ecotypes (e.g. marine versus terrestrial food resources). This may have important implications for the animals that reside within them. We examined 1) canid pathogen presence in an endangered arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) population and 2) relative total mercury (THg) level as a function of ecotype ('coastal' or 'inland') for arctic foxes to test whether the presence of pathogens or heavy metal concentration correlate with population health. The Bering Sea populations on Bering and Mednyi Islands were compared to Icelandic arctic fox populations with respect to inland and coastal ecotypes. Serological and DNA based pathogen screening techniques were used to examine arctic foxes for pathogens. THg was measured by atomic absorption spectrometry from hair samples of historical and modern collected arctic foxes and samples from their prey species (hair and internal organs). Presence of pathogens did not correlate with population decline from Mednyi Island. However, THg concentration correlated strongly with ecotype and was reflected in the THg concentrations detected in available food sources in each ecotype. The highest concentration of THg was found in ecotypes where foxes depended on marine vertebrates for food. Exclusively inland ecotypes had low THg concentrations. The results suggest that absolute exposure to heavy metals may be less important than the feeding ecology and feeding opportunities of top predators such as arctic foxes which may in turn influence population health and stability. A higher risk to wildlife of heavy metal exposure correlates with feeding strategies that rely primarily on a marine based diet.

  4. New Frontiers in Nematode Ecology

    PubMed Central

    Ferris, Howard

    1993-01-01

    Future areas of emphasis for research and scholarship in nematode ecology are indicated by pressing agricultural and environmental issues, by new directions in applied nematology, and by current technological advances. Studies in nematode ecology must extend beyond observation, counting, and simple statistical analysis. Experimentation and the testing of hypotheses are needed for understanding the biological mechanisms of ecological systems. Opportunities for fruitful experimentation in nematode ecology are emerging at the ecosystem, community, population, and individual levels. Nematode ecologists will best promote their field of study by closely monitoring and participating in the advances, initiatives, developments, and directions in the larger field of ecology. PMID:19279783

  5. Ecological carrying capacity assessment of diving site: A case study of Mabul Island, Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Li-Ye; Chung, Shan-Shan; Qiu, Jian-Wen

    2016-12-01

    Despite considered a non-consumptive use of the marine environment, diving-related activities can cause damages to coral reefs. It is imminent to assess the maximum numbers of divers that can be accommodated by a diving site before it is subject to irreversible deterioration. This study aimed to assess the ecological carrying capacity of a diving site in Mabul Island, Malaysia. Photo-quadrat line transect method was used in the benthic survey. The ecological carrying capacity was assessed based on the relationship between the number of divers and the proportion of diver damaged hard corals in Mabul Island. The results indicated that the proportion of diver damaged hard corals occurred exponentially with increasing use. The ecological carrying capacity of Mabul Island is 15,600-16,800 divers per diving site per year at current levels of diver education and training with a quarterly threshold of 3900-4200 per site. Our calculation shows that management intervention (e.g. limiting diving) is justified at 8-14% of hard coral damage. In addition, the use of coral reef dominated diving sites should be managed according to their sensitivity to diver damage and the depth of the reefs.

  6. Factors associated with hospitalisations in chronic conditions deemed avoidable: ecological study in the Spanish healthcare system

    PubMed Central

    Angulo-Pueyo, Ester; Ridao-López, Manuel; Martínez-Lizaga, Natalia; García-Armesto, Sandra; Peiró, Salvador; Bernal-Delgado, Enrique

    2017-01-01

    Objectives Potentially avoidable hospitalisations have been used as a proxy for primary care quality. We aimed to analyse the ecological association between contextual and systemic factors featured in the Spanish healthcare system and the variation in potentially avoidable hospitalisations for a number of chronic conditions. Methods A cross-section ecological study based on the linkage of administrative data sources from virtually all healthcare areas (n=202) and autonomous communities (n=16) composing the Spanish National Health System was performed. Potentially avoidable hospitalisations in chronic conditions were defined using the Spanish validation of the Agency for Health Research and Quality (AHRQ) preventable quality indicators. Using 2012 data, the ecological association between potentially avoidable hospitalisations and factors featuring healthcare areas and autonomous communities was tested using multilevel negative binomial regression. Results In 2012, 151 468 admissions were flagged as potentially avoidable in Spain. After adjusting for differences in age, sex and burden of disease, the only variable associated with the outcome was hospitalisation intensity for any cause in previous years (incidence risk ratio 1.19 (95% CI 1.13 to 1.26)). The autonomous community of residence explained a negligible part of the residual unexplained variation (variance 0.01 (SE 0.008)). Primary care supply and activity did not show any association. Conclusions The findings suggest that the variation in potentially avoidable hospitalisations in chronic conditions at the healthcare area level is a reflection of how intensively hospitals are used in a healthcare area for any cause, rather than of primary care characteristics. Whether other non-studied features at the healthcare area level or primary care level could explain the observed variation remains uncertain. PMID:28237952

  7. An ecological study on suicide and homicide in Brazil.

    PubMed

    Bando, Daniel Hideki; Lester, David

    2014-04-01

    The objective was to evaluate correlations between suicide, homicide and socio-demographic variables by an ecological study. Mortality and socio-demographic data were collected from official records of the Ministry of Health and IBGE (2010), aggregated by state (27). The data were analyzed using correlation techniques, factor analysis, principal component analysis with a varimax rotation and multiple linear regression. Suicide age-adjusted rates for the total population, men and women were 5.0, 8.0, and 2.2 per 100,000 inhabitants respectively. The suicide rates ranged from 2.7 in Pará to 9.1 in Rio Grande do Sul. Homicide for the total population, men and women were 27.2, 50.8, and 4.5 per 100,000, respectively. The homicide rates ranged from 13.0 in Santa Catarina to 68.9 in Alagoas. Suicide and homicide were negatively associated, the significance persisted among men. Unemployment was negatively correlated with suicide and positively with homicide. Different socio-demographic variables were found to correlate with suicide and homicide in the regressions. Suicide showed a pattern suggesting that, in Brazil, it is related to high socioeconomic status. Homicide seemed to follow the pattern found in other countries, associated with lower social and economic status.

  8. ELF communications system ecological monitoring program: Upland flora studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mroz, Glenn D.; Cattelino, Peter J.; Gale, Margaret R.; Jones, Elizabeth A.; Jurgensen, Martin F.

    1994-10-01

    The U.S. Navy has completed a program monitoring flora, fauna, and ecological relationships for possible effects from electromagnetic (EM) fields produced by its Extremely Low Frequency (ELF) Communications System. This report documents studies of upland flora conducted near the Navy's transmitting antenna in Michigan. From 1982 through 1993 researchers from the Michigan Technological University (MTU) monitored tree, herb, and fungal species dominant in areas near (treatment) and far (control) from the ELF antenna. Above-ground parameters included the productivity, physiology, and phenology of trees, as well as the morphology and phenology of an herb. Below-ground, the important association between tree roots and fungi were monitored. Investigators also measured ambient weather conditions, soil nutrients, and EM field intensities. The MTU research team used analysis of variance and covariance to examine the data. When site-by-year interactions were significant, correlations and regressions were used to determine whether residuals were related to EM exposure. Results suggest a possible subtle EM effect to the cambial and stemwood growth of some tree species but not to any other parameter. MTU investigators conclude no short-term, adverse effects on forest health from exposure to EM fields produced by the Naval Radio Transmitting Facility-Republic, Michigan.

  9. Integrated Modeling for the Assessment of Ecological Impacts of Sea Level Rise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hagen, S. C.; Lewis, G.; Bartel, R.; Batten, B.; Huang, W.; Morris, J.; Slinn, D. N.; Sparks, J.; Walters, L.; Wang, D.; Weishampel, J.; Yeh, G.

    2010-12-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) has the potential to affect a variety of coastal habitats with a myriad of deleterious ecological effects and to overwhelm human settlements along the coast. SLR should be given serious consideration when more than half of the U.S. population lives within 50 miles of the coast. SLR effects will be felt along coastal beaches and in estuarine waters, with consequences to barrier islands, submerged aquatic vegetation beds, sand and mud flats, oyster reefs, and tidal and freshwater wetlands. Managers of these coastal resources must be aware of potential consequences of SLR and adjust their plans accordingly to protect and preserve the resources under their care. The Gulf Coast provides critical habitats for a majority of the commercially important species in the Gulf of Mexico, which depend on inshore waters for either permanent residence or nursery area. The ecosystem services provided by these coastal habitats are at risk from rising sea level. Our team will assess the risk to coasts and coastal habitats from SLR in a 5-year project. We will apply existing models of circulation and transport from the watershed to the sea. The ultimate prediction will be of sediment loadings to the estuary as a result of overland flow, shoreline and barrier island erosion, and salinity transport, all of which will be used to model the evolution of intertidal marshes (MEM II). Over the five-year course of our research we will be simulating hydrodynamics and transport for all three NERRS reserves, including: Apalachicola, Weeks Bay and Grand Bay. The project will result in products whereby managers will be able to assess marshes, oyster reefs, submerged aquatic vegetation, predict wetland stability and indentify restoration locations for marsh and oyster habitats. In addition, we will produce Decision Support tools that will enable managers to predict future coastal erosion rates for management-specified shorelines. Project outcomes will enable the management

  10. Diary of a Dabbler: Ecological Influences on an EFL Teacher's Efforts to Study Japanese Informally

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Casanave, Christine Pearson

    2012-01-01

    In this diary study, the author draws from journals written over the course of 8 years working as an English instructor at a Japanese university, with the aim of documenting the influences on her desire to invest effort in the self-study of Japanese (what she refers to as the "ecology of effort"). An ecological perspective reveals the…

  11. Backyard Ecology.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Elser, Monica; Musheno, Birgit; Saltz, Charlene

    2003-01-01

    Describes the Ecology Explorers, the community education component of Arizona State University's Central Arizona Phoenix Long-Term Ecological Research project, which offers teacher internship programs that link university researchers, K-12 teachers, and students in studying urban ecology. Explains that student neighborhoods are dynamic ecosystems…

  12. Level 2 software reuse study

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Herman, Scott E.

    1989-01-01

    The Space Station Freedom Program (SSFP) Level 2 Software Reuse Study group was formed by Bob Nelson (NASA SSFP) from members of the Information Systems Program Support Contract (PSC) team. The objectives of the study were to identify existing software reuse libraries, to identify existing reusability processes and experiences, to identify reusability analysis tools and users, and to provide recommendations for a software reusability process for the SSFP. To date the following have been delivered: (1) definitions of commonality and reuse, (2) a report on existing software reuse libraries and library management systems, (3) a report on reuse process and methodology gleaned from software reuse experts, and (4) a report on software attributes for measuring commonality and reusability. Three implementation alternatives for a repository of reusable components were identified: centralized at the SSE Development Facility (SSEDF), a distributed approach across the network of Software Production Facilities, and a directory approach. A number of findings from the reuse study and several reuse strategy considerations were presented.

  13. Morphologically Cryptic Amphipod Species Are "Ecological Clones" at Regional but Not at Local Scale: A Case Study of Four Niphargus Species.

    PubMed

    Fišer, Žiga; Altermatt, Florian; Zakšek, Valerija; Knapič, Tea; Fišer, Cene

    2015-01-01

    Recent studies indicate that morphologically cryptic species may be ecologically more different than would be predicted from their morphological similarity and phylogenetic relatedness. However, in biodiversity research it often remains unclear whether cryptic species should be treated as ecologically equivalent, or whether detected differences have ecological significance. In this study, we assessed the ecological equivalence of four morphologically cryptic species of the amphipod genus Niphargus. All species live in a small, isolated area on the Istrian Peninsula in the NW Balkans. The distributional ranges of the species are partially overlapping and all species are living in springs. We reconstructed their ecological niches using morphological traits related to feeding, bioclimatic niche envelope and species' preference for epi-hypogean habitats. The ecological meaning of differences in niches was evaluated using distributional data and co-occurrence frequencies. We show that the species comprise two pairs of sister species. All species differ from each other and the degree of differentiation is not related to phylogenetic relatedness. Moreover, low co-occurrence frequencies in sympatric zones imply present or past interspecific competition. This pattern suggests that species are not differentiated enough to reduce interspecific competition, nor ecologically equivalent to co-exist via neutral dynamics. We tentatively conclude that the question of ecological equivalence relates to the scale of the study: at a fine scale, species' differences may influence dynamics in a local community, whereas at the regional level these species likely play roughly similar ecological roles.

  14. Morphologically Cryptic Amphipod Species Are “Ecological Clones” at Regional but Not at Local Scale: A Case Study of Four Niphargus Species

    PubMed Central

    Fišer, Žiga; Altermatt, Florian; Zakšek, Valerija; Knapič, Tea; Fišer, Cene

    2015-01-01

    Recent studies indicate that morphologically cryptic species may be ecologically more different than would be predicted from their morphological similarity and phylogenetic relatedness. However, in biodiversity research it often remains unclear whether cryptic species should be treated as ecologically equivalent, or whether detected differences have ecological significance. In this study, we assessed the ecological equivalence of four morphologically cryptic species of the amphipod genus Niphargus. All species live in a small, isolated area on the Istrian Peninsula in the NW Balkans. The distributional ranges of the species are partially overlapping and all species are living in springs. We reconstructed their ecological niches using morphological traits related to feeding, bioclimatic niche envelope and species’ preference for epi-hypogean habitats. The ecological meaning of differences in niches was evaluated using distributional data and co-occurrence frequencies. We show that the species comprise two pairs of sister species. All species differ from each other and the degree of differentiation is not related to phylogenetic relatedness. Moreover, low co-occurrence frequencies in sympatric zones imply present or past interspecific competition. This pattern suggests that species are not differentiated enough to reduce interspecific competition, nor ecologically equivalent to co-exist via neutral dynamics. We tentatively conclude that the question of ecological equivalence relates to the scale of the study: at a fine scale, species’ differences may influence dynamics in a local community, whereas at the regional level these species likely play roughly similar ecological roles. PMID:26226375

  15. Ciguatera fish poisoning in la Habana, Cuba: a study of local social-ecological resilience.

    PubMed

    Morrison, Karen; Aguiar Prieto, Pablo; Castro Domínguez, Arnaldo; Waltner-Toews, David; Fitzgibbon, John

    2008-09-01

    Following the collapse of the Cuban economy in the early 1990s, epidemiologists in the Cuban Ministry of Health noticed dramatic increases in reported outbreaks of ciguatera fish poisoning (CFP) in some coastal communities. This article summarizes the results of a comparative case study which applied an ecosystem approach to human health to investigate this issue. Situated learning and complexity theories were used to interpret the results of the investigation. CFP outbreaks are influenced by a complex set of interactions between ecological and socioeconomic processes. This study found that the level of organization of the local sports fishing community and the degree of degradation of the local nearshore marine ecosystem appear to be key factors influencing the diverging levels of CFP outbreaks recorded in the 1990s in the communities studied.

  16. Socioeconomic factors, morbidity and drug utilization--an ecological study.

    PubMed

    Henricson, K; Stenberg, P; Rametsteiner, G; Ranstam, J; Hanson, B S; Melander, A

    1998-07-01

    The aim of the present study was to elucidate the relations between demographic and socioeconomic factors, morbidity and the utilization of major drug groups in an urban Swedish population. The study was performed as an ecological analysis during November 1991 in the 17 different districts of Malmö, the third largest Swedish city (235,000 inhabitants). The material comprised 86,228 ACT-coded drug items which corresponded to 76% of all prescriptions dispensed during the study month. Of these, 43,032, dispensed to patients aged 15-64 years, were analysed in the present work. Age standardized drug utilization was expressed as the number of dispensed Defined Daily Doses per 1000 inhabitants per day. Morbidity was measured in terms of reimbursed days on sick leave. The sociodemographic parameters used were socioeconomic status (SES), employment rate, median income per family, households on social allowance, and ethnicity. For four of the five major pharmacological groups (ATC-groups A, C, J, N and R, i.e. alimentation, circulation, infectious diseases, nervous system and respiration), most pronouncedly group N and least so group R, utilization correlated positively with not only the extent of morbidity but also with an unfavourable socioeconomic situation, high proportion of immigrants, and households on social allowance or with low income and/or with a low employment rate. The utilization of antibiotics (group J), however, instead correlated negatively with these parameters. For all five drug groups, these trends were similar among men and women, albeit with varying strength. In conclusion, socioeconomic factors may have a profound influence on the utilization of several major drug groups. At least in the case of antibiotics, the consequence of this influence is irrational drug use.

  17. An ecologic analysis of county-level PM2.5 concentrations and lung cancer incidence and mortality.

    PubMed

    Vinikoor-Imler, Lisa C; Davis, J Allen; Luben, Thomas J

    2011-06-01

    Few studies have explored the relationship between PM2.5 and lung cancer incidence. Although results are mixed, some studies have demonstrated a positive relationship between PM2.5 and lung cancer mortality. Using an ecologic study design, we examined the county-level associations between PM2.5 concentrations (2002-2005) and lung cancer incidence and mortality in North Carolina (2002-2006). Positive trends were observed between PM2.5 concentrations and lung cancer incidence and mortality; however, the R2 for both were <0.10. The slopes for the relationship between PM2.5 and lung cancer incidence and mortality were 1.26 (95% CI 0.31, 2.21, p-value 0.01) and 0.73 (95% CI 0.09, 1.36, p-value 0.03) per 1 μg/m3 PM2.5, respectively. These associations were slightly strengthened with the inclusion of variables representing socioeconomic status and smoking. Although variability is high, thus reflecting the importance of tobacco smoking and other etiologic agents that influence lung cancer incidence and mortality besides PM2.5, a positive trend is observed between PM2.5 and lung cancer incidence and mortality. This suggests the possibility of an association between PM2.5 concentrations and lung cancer incidence and mortality.

  18. Ecological risk assessment of trace elements in sediment: A case study from Limpopo, South Africa.

    PubMed

    Dahms, S; Baker, N J; Greenfield, R

    2017-01-01

    This study aimed to determine the ecological risk posed by metals, in sediments from the Nyl River system in Limpopo, South Africa. Metals were extracted from sediment samples by aqua regia microwave digestion and were analysed using standard ICP-OES techniques. The ecological risk indices applied to the data included Contamination Factor, Pollution Load Index, Geo-accumulation Index and Enrichment Factor. The results showed that the levels of Ni at STW and NYL in the HF period exceeded the Canadian Sediment Quality Guidelines by a factor of 1.36 and 1.83 respectively whereas NYL and MDD had 2.57 and 1.32 times the allowed limit of Ni in the LF period. During the HF period, the GC site exceeded the allowed limit of Zn by a factor of 1.04 and NYL had 1.21 times the allowed Zn in the LF period. The levels of metals are generally low near the origin of the river and increase moving downstream. The levels of metals in the Nyl River floodplain, a Ramsar accredited wetland, were high with CF scores ranging between 0.905 and 5.82, Igeo values with a range of -0.541 to 2.441 and EF scores ranging from 0.959 to 6.171. and posed a greater risk than the other sites. This indicated that the wetland is performing its ecological function by trapping and removing toxins from the water body. The Pollution Load Index determined that the Golf Course (PLI=4.586) and STW (PLI=2.617) sites were polluted only in the low flow period whereas the Nyl River floodplain (HF PLI=79.845; LF PLI=30378.768) and Moorddrift Dam (HF PLI=1.903; LF PLI=9.256) sites were polluted in high flow and low flow periods.

  19. Low levels of hybridization between sympatric Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus) and Dolly Varden char (Salvelinus malma) highlights their genetic distinctiveness and ecological segregation

    PubMed Central

    May-McNally, Shannan L; Quinn, Thomas P; Taylor, Eric B

    2015-01-01

    Understanding the extent of interspecific hybridization and how ecological segregation may influence hybridization requires comprehensively sampling different habitats over a range of life history stages. Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus) and Dolly Varden (S. malma) are recently diverged salmonid fishes that come into contact in several areas of the North Pacific where they occasionally hybridize. To better quantify the degree of hybridization and ecological segregation between these taxa, we sampled over 700 fish from multiple lake (littoral and profundal) and stream sites in two large, interconnected southwestern Alaskan lakes. Individuals were genotyped at 12 microsatellite markers, and genetic admixture (Q) values generated through Bayesian-based clustering revealed hybridization levels generally lower than reported in a previous study (<0.6% to 5% of samples classified as late-generation hybrids). Dolly Varden and Arctic char tended to make different use of stream habitats with the latter apparently abandoning streams for lake habitats after 2–3 years of age. Our results support the distinct biological species status of Dolly Varden and Arctic char and suggest that ecological segregation may be an important factor limiting opportunities for hybridization and/or the ecological performance of hybrid char. PMID:26356310

  20. Low levels of hybridization between sympatric Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus) and Dolly Varden char (Salvelinus malma) highlights their genetic distinctiveness and ecological segregation.

    PubMed

    May-McNally, Shannan L; Quinn, Thomas P; Taylor, Eric B

    2015-08-01

    Understanding the extent of interspecific hybridization and how ecological segregation may influence hybridization requires comprehensively sampling different habitats over a range of life history stages. Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus) and Dolly Varden (S. malma) are recently diverged salmonid fishes that come into contact in several areas of the North Pacific where they occasionally hybridize. To better quantify the degree of hybridization and ecological segregation between these taxa, we sampled over 700 fish from multiple lake (littoral and profundal) and stream sites in two large, interconnected southwestern Alaskan lakes. Individuals were genotyped at 12 microsatellite markers, and genetic admixture (Q) values generated through Bayesian-based clustering revealed hybridization levels generally lower than reported in a previous study (<0.6% to 5% of samples classified as late-generation hybrids). Dolly Varden and Arctic char tended to make different use of stream habitats with the latter apparently abandoning streams for lake habitats after 2-3 years of age. Our results support the distinct biological species status of Dolly Varden and Arctic char and suggest that ecological segregation may be an important factor limiting opportunities for hybridization and/or the ecological performance of hybrid char.

  1. An ecologic study of dietary links to prostate cancer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grant, W. B.

    1999-01-01

    BACKGROUND: The etiology of prostate cancer has not been fully resolved in the scientific and medical literature, although the non-fat portion of milk and calcium are emerging as leading dietary risk factors, with lycopene (found in tomatoes) and vitamin D apparently being risk reduction factors. METHODS: The ecologic (multi-country statistical) approach is used to study dietary links to prostate cancer. Mortality data from 1986 for various age groups in 41 countries are compared with national consumer macronutrient supply values for 1983 and tomato supply values for 1985. RESULTS: For 28 countries with more than five Kcal/day of tomatoes in the consumer supply, a linear combination of non-fat milk (risk factor) and tomatoes (risk reduction factor) was found to have the highest statistical association with prostate cancer mortality rates for men over the age of 35, with the Pearson regression coefficient (R2) for those aged 65-74 years = 0.67 and p < 0.001. For the 13 countries with fewer than six Kcal/day of tomatoes, non-fat milk had the highest association (R2 = 0.92, p < 0.001 for men aged 65-74 years). For 41 countries combined, the non-fat portion of milk had the highest association with prostate cancer mortality rates (R2 = 0.73, p < 0.001 for men aged 65-74 years). CONCLUSIONS: These results support the results of several cohort studies which found the non-fat portion of milk to have the highest association with prostate cancer, likely due to the calcium, and tomatoes to reduce the risk of prostate cancer, most likely due to lycopene.

  2. Targeted Acoustic Data Processing for Ocean Ecological Studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sidorovskaia, N.; Li, K.; Tiemann, C.; Ackleh, A. S.; Tang, T.; Ioup, G. E.; Ioup, J. W.

    2015-12-01

    The Gulf of Mexico is home to many species of deep diving marine mammals. In recent years several ecological studies have collected large volumes of Passive Acoustic Monitoring (PAM) data to investigate the effects of anthropogenic activities on protected and endangered marine mammal species. To utilize these data to their fullest potential for abundance estimates and habitat preference studies, automated detection and classification algorithms are needed to extract species acoustic encounters from a continuous stream of data. The species which phonate in overlapping frequency bands represent a particular challenge. This paper analyzes the performance of a newly developed automated detector for the classification of beaked whale clicks in the Northern Gulf of Mexico. Current used beaked whale classification algorithms rely heavily on experienced human operator involvement in manually associating potential events with a particular species of beaked whales. Our detection algorithm is two-stage: the detector is triggered when the species-representative phonation band energy exceeds the baseline detection threshold. Then multiple event attributes (temporal click duration, central frequency, frequency band, frequency sweep rate, Choi-Williams distribution shape indices) are measured. An attribute vector is then used to discriminate among different species of beaked whales present in the Gulf of Mexico and Risso's dolphins which were recognized to mask the detections of beaked whales in the case of widely used energy-band detectors. The detector is applied to the PAM data collected by the Littoral Acoustic Demonstration Center to estimate abundance trends of beaked whales in the vicinity of the 2010 oil spill before and after the disaster. This algorithm will allow automated processing with minimal operator involvement for new and archival PAM data. [The research is supported by a BP/GOMRI 2015-2017 consortium grant.

  3. Insights into population ecology from long-term studies of red grouse Lagopus lagopus scoticus.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Padilla, Jesus; Redpath, Steve M; Zeineddine, Mohammed; Mougeot, François

    2014-01-01

    Long-term studies have been the backbone of population ecology. The red grouse Lagopus lagopus scoticus is one species that has contributed widely to this field since the 1950s. This paper reviews the trajectory and profound impact that these studies have had. Red grouse research has combined long-term studies of marked individuals with demographic studies over wide geographical areas and replicated individual- and population-level manipulations. A main focus has been on understanding the causes of population cycles in red grouse, and in particular the relative importance of intrinsic (behaviour) and extrinsic (climate, food limitation and parasite) mechanisms. Separate studies conducted in different regions initially proposed either the nematode parasite Trichostrongylus tenuis or changes in male aggressiveness in autumn as drivers of population cycles. More recent experiments suggest that parasites are not a necessary cause for cycles and have highlighted that behavioural and parasite-mediated mechanisms are interrelated. Long-term experiments show that parasites and aggressiveness interact. Two outstanding questions remain to be tested experimentally. First, what intrinsic mechanism causes temporal variation in patterns of male aggressiveness? The current favoured mechanism is related to patterns of kin structuring although there are alternative hypotheses. Second, how do the dual, interacting mechanisms, affect population dynamics? Red grouse studies have had an important impact on the field of population ecology, in particular through highlighting: (1) the impact of parasites on populations; (2) the role of intrinsic mechanisms in cyclic dynamics and (3) the need to consider multiple, interacting mechanisms.

  4. Concentration Levels and Ecological Risks of Persistent Organic Pollutants in the Surface Sediments of Tianjin Coastal Area, China

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Xiaoxia; Chen, Chaoqi; Zhang, Shu; Hou, Zhen; Yang, Junjun

    2013-01-01

    Sediments were sampled from different surface water bodies in Tianjin coastal area, China, and persistent organic pollutants (POPs) including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), organochlorine pesticides (OCPs), polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) were measured using GC/MS or GC/ECD. The purposes were to investigate the concentration levels of the POPs and to assess their ecological risks. The results showed that all the 16 priority PAHs were detected from the 10 sediments sampled with the total concentrations of the 16 PAHs ranging from 274.06 μg/kg to 2656.65 μg/kg, while the concentrations of the halogenated POPs were generally low except in the Dagu waste discharging river where the total concentrations of 24 OCPs, 35 PCBs, and 14 PBDEs were 3103.36 μg/kg, 87.31 μg/kg, and 13.88 μg/kg, respectively. In the studied sediments, PAHs exhibited risks to benthonic organisms; particularly the concentrations of naphthalene and/or acenaphthene exceeded their probable effect concentrations in several locations. In comparison, only in the Dagu waste discharging river, OCPs exhibited risks with the concentrations of heptachlor epoxide and lindane exceeding their probable effect concentrations. PCBs and PBDEs posed rare risks in the studied area. PMID:23401668

  5. A Longitudinal Study of Students' Conceptualization of Ecological Processes.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hellden, Gustav F.

    During the last decades, an increasing awareness has developed that humankind will have to make important decisions about the environment which will demand substantive knowledge of critical ecological phenomena such as the production and decomposition of biomass (World Commission on Environment and Development, 1987). As a biology teacher the…

  6. Ecological Validity in Eye-Tracking: An Empirical Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Spinner, Patti; Gass, Susan M.; Behney, Jennifer

    2013-01-01

    Eye-trackers are becoming increasingly widespread as a tool to investigate second language (L2) acquisition. Unfortunately, clear standards for methodology--including font size, font type, and placement of interest areas--are not yet available. Although many researchers stress the need for ecological validity--that is, the simulation of natural…

  7. Ecological Methods in the Study of Administrative Behavior.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scott, Myrtle; Eklund, Susan J.

    Qualitative/naturalistic inquiry intends to discover whatever naturally occurring order exists rather than to test various theories or conceptual frameworks held by the investigator. Naturalistic, ecological data are urgently needed concerning the behavior of educational administrators. Such data can considerably change the knowledge base of the…

  8. Introducing Future Engineers to Sustainable Ecology Problems: A Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Filipkowski, A.

    2011-01-01

    The problem of Earth environmental destruction by human activities is becoming dangerous. Engineers responsible for the production of any goods should be well aware of the negative influence of their activities on the state of the planet. This is why the understanding of ecological problems is essential for people responsible for production and…

  9. A Study of the St. Lawrence River Ecological Habitat

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mesires, Maria

    2010-01-01

    Save the River, a grassroots advocacy group established in 1978, lobbies for policies to preserve the upper St. Lawrence River and uses the community's help to keep an eye on the existing habitats. Recently, they procured the Fresh Sound Foundation grant to support the development of new K-12 ecology curricula by local area teachers to educate…

  10. Supercharged Snails for Stream Ecology & Water-Quality Studies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stewart, Arthur J.; Ryon, Michael G.

    2003-01-01

    Gill-breathing freshwater snails (Family "Pleuroceridae") are ecologically important, abundant in many streams in the United States, and easy to collect and maintain under classroom conditions. These snails can be used in classroom tests to demonstrate effects of pollutants on aquatic organisms. In more advanced classes, students can cage the…

  11. An Exploratory Study of Elementary Preservice Teachers' Understanding of Ecology Using Concept Maps

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zak, Kevin M.; Munson, Bruce H.

    2008-01-01

    Classroom teachers serve a critical role in developing environmentally literate citizens. In this study, the authors assessed K-8 preservice teachers' understanding of basic ecological concepts. Participants (N = 56) constructed concept maps describing the inter-relationships among 16 ecological concepts. The authors analyzed the concept maps to…

  12. Method for Studying a Human Ecology: An Adaptation of the Grounded Theory Tradition.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McCaslin, Mark L.; Scott, Karen Wilson

    Constructivist grounded theory is focused on discovery through understanding data in a human ecology. The procedures outlined in this paper are designed to guide the beginning theorist through the process of creating a theory grounded in data that is a product of the human ecology under study. These new procedures extend grounded theory, providing…

  13. Animal behaviour shapes the ecological effects of ocean acidification and warming: moving from individual to community-level responses.

    PubMed

    Nagelkerken, Ivan; Munday, Philip L

    2016-03-01

    Biological communities are shaped by complex interactions between organisms and their environment as well as interactions with other species. Humans are rapidly changing the marine environment through increasing greenhouse gas emissions, resulting in ocean warming and acidification. The first response by animals to environmental change is predominantly through modification of their behaviour, which in turn affects species interactions and ecological processes. Yet, many climate change studies ignore animal behaviour. Furthermore, our current knowledge of how global change alters animal behaviour is mostly restricted to single species, life phases and stressors, leading to an incomplete view of how coinciding climate stressors can affect the ecological interactions that structure biological communities. Here, we first review studies on the effects of warming and acidification on the behaviour of marine animals. We demonstrate how pervasive the effects of global change are on a wide range of critical behaviours that determine the persistence of species and their success in ecological communities. We then evaluate several approaches to studying the ecological effects of warming and acidification, and identify knowledge gaps that need to be filled, to better understand how global change will affect marine populations and communities through altered animal behaviours. Our review provides a synthesis of the far-reaching consequences that behavioural changes could have for marine ecosystems in a rapidly changing environment. Without considering the pervasive effects of climate change on animal behaviour we will limit our ability to forecast the impacts of ocean change and provide insights that can aid management strategies.

  14. USDOE study: Human health and ecological risk assessment for produced water discharges

    SciTech Connect

    Meinhold, A.F.; Holtzman, S.; DePhillips, M.; Hamilton, L.D.

    1994-12-31

    Produced water generated during the production of oil and gas can contain high concentrations of radionuclides, organics and heavy metals. There are concerns about potential human health and ecological impacts from the discharge of these contaminants to the Gulf of Mexico. Data collected in the United States Department of Energy (USDOE) field study are being used in a series of human health and ecological risk assessments. These assessments will support scientifically-based regulation and risk management. This presentation: summarizes risk assessments performed for produced water discharges; describes how uncertainties in these assessments are guiding data collection efforts in the USDOE field study; and outlines ongoing risk assessment studies. In these studies, risk assessment is treated as an iterative process. An initial screening-level assessment is performed to identify important contaminants, transport and exposure pathways, and parameters. These intermediate results are used to guide data collection efforts and refinements to the analysis. At this stage in the analysis, risk is described in terms of probabilities; the uncertainties in each measured or modeled parameter are considered explicitly.

  15. Bioremediation in marine ecosystems: a computational study combining ecological modeling and flux balance analysis.

    PubMed

    Taffi, Marianna; Paoletti, Nicola; Angione, Claudio; Pucciarelli, Sandra; Marini, Mauro; Liò, Pietro

    2014-01-01

    The pressure to search effective bioremediation methodologies for contaminated ecosystems has led to the large-scale identification of microbial species and metabolic degradation pathways. However, minor attention has been paid to the study of bioremediation in marine food webs and to the definition of integrated strategies for reducing bioaccumulation in species. We propose a novel computational framework for analysing the multiscale effects of bioremediation at the ecosystem level, based on coupling food web bioaccumulation models and metabolic models of degrading bacteria. The combination of techniques from synthetic biology and ecological network analysis allows the specification of arbitrary scenarios of contaminant removal and the evaluation of strategies based on natural or synthetic microbial strains. In this study, we derive a bioaccumulation model of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) in the Adriatic food web, and we extend a metabolic reconstruction of Pseudomonas putida KT2440 (iJN746) with the aerobic pathway of PCBs degradation. We assess the effectiveness of different bioremediation scenarios in reducing PCBs concentration in species and we study indices of species centrality to measure their importance in the contaminant diffusion via feeding links. The analysis of the Adriatic sea case study suggests that our framework could represent a practical tool in the design of effective remediation strategies, providing at the same time insights into the ecological role of microbial communities within food webs.

  16. A Socio-Ecological Approach for Identifying and Contextualising Spatial Ecosystem-Based Adaptation Priorities at the Sub-National Level

    PubMed Central

    Bourne, Amanda; Holness, Stephen; Holden, Petra; Scorgie, Sarshen; Donatti, Camila I.; Midgley, Guy

    2016-01-01

    Climate change adds an additional layer of complexity to existing sustainable development and biodiversity conservation challenges. The impacts of global climate change are felt locally, and thus local governance structures will increasingly be responsible for preparedness and local responses. Ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) options are gaining prominence as relevant climate change solutions. Local government officials seldom have an appropriate understanding of the role of ecosystem functioning in sustainable development goals, or access to relevant climate information. Thus the use of ecosystems in helping people adapt to climate change is limited partially by the lack of information on where ecosystems have the highest potential to do so. To begin overcoming this barrier, Conservation South Africa in partnership with local government developed a socio-ecological approach for identifying spatial EbA priorities at the sub-national level. Using GIS-based multi-criteria analysis and vegetation distribution models, the authors have spatially integrated relevant ecological and social information at a scale appropriate to inform local level political, administrative, and operational decision makers. This is the first systematic approach of which we are aware that highlights spatial priority areas for EbA implementation. Nodes of socio-ecological vulnerability are identified, and the inclusion of areas that provide ecosystem services and ecological resilience to future climate change is innovative. The purpose of this paper is to present and demonstrate a methodology for combining complex information into user-friendly spatial products for local level decision making on EbA. The authors focus on illustrating the kinds of products that can be generated from combining information in the suggested ways, and do not discuss the nuance of climate models nor present specific technical details of the model outputs here. Two representative case studies from rural South Africa

  17. A Socio-Ecological Approach for Identifying and Contextualising Spatial Ecosystem-Based Adaptation Priorities at the Sub-National Level.

    PubMed

    Bourne, Amanda; Holness, Stephen; Holden, Petra; Scorgie, Sarshen; Donatti, Camila I; Midgley, Guy

    2016-01-01

    Climate change adds an additional layer of complexity to existing sustainable development and biodiversity conservation challenges. The impacts of global climate change are felt locally, and thus local governance structures will increasingly be responsible for preparedness and local responses. Ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) options are gaining prominence as relevant climate change solutions. Local government officials seldom have an appropriate understanding of the role of ecosystem functioning in sustainable development goals, or access to relevant climate information. Thus the use of ecosystems in helping people adapt to climate change is limited partially by the lack of information on where ecosystems have the highest potential to do so. To begin overcoming this barrier, Conservation South Africa in partnership with local government developed a socio-ecological approach for identifying spatial EbA priorities at the sub-national level. Using GIS-based multi-criteria analysis and vegetation distribution models, the authors have spatially integrated relevant ecological and social information at a scale appropriate to inform local level political, administrative, and operational decision makers. This is the first systematic approach of which we are aware that highlights spatial priority areas for EbA implementation. Nodes of socio-ecological vulnerability are identified, and the inclusion of areas that provide ecosystem services and ecological resilience to future climate change is innovative. The purpose of this paper is to present and demonstrate a methodology for combining complex information into user-friendly spatial products for local level decision making on EbA. The authors focus on illustrating the kinds of products that can be generated from combining information in the suggested ways, and do not discuss the nuance of climate models nor present specific technical details of the model outputs here. Two representative case studies from rural South Africa

  18. Ecological network analysis of an urban water metabolic system: model development, and a case study for Beijing.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Yan; Yang, Zhifeng; Fath, Brian D

    2010-09-15

    Using ecological network analysis, we analyzed the network structure and ecological relationships in an urban water metabolic system. We developed an ecological network model for the system, and used Beijing as an example of analysis based on the model. We used network throughflow analysis to determine the flows among components, and measured both indirect and direct flows. Using a network utility matrix, we determined the relationships and degrees of mutualism among six compartments--1) local environment, 2) rainwater collection, 3) industry, 4) agriculture, 5) domestic sector, and 6) wastewater recycling--which represent producer, consumer, and reducer trophic levels. The capacity of producers to provide water for Beijing decreased from 2003 to 2007, and consumer demand for water decreased due to decreasing industrial and agricultural demand; the recycling capacity of reducers also improved, decreasing the discharge pressure on the environment. The ecological relationships associated with the local environment or the wastewater recycling sector changed little from 2003 to 2007. From 2003 to 2005, the main changes in the ecological relationships among components of Beijing's water metabolic system mostly occurred between the local environment, the industrial and agricultural sectors, and the domestic sector, but by 2006 and 2007, the major change was between the local environment, the agricultural sector, and the industrial sector. The other ecological relationships did not change during the study period. Although Beijing's mutualism indices remained generally stable, the ecological relationships among compartments changed greatly. Our analysis revealed ways to further optimize this system and the relationships among compartments, thereby optimizing future urban water resources development.

  19. Drinking water contamination and the incidence of leukemia: An ecologic study

    SciTech Connect

    Fagliano, J.; Berry, M.; Bove, F.; Burke, T. )

    1990-10-01

    An ecologic study was performed to examine the relation between the incidence of leukemias and the occurrence of volatile organic chemical (VOC) contamination of drinking water supplies within a study area comprised of subpopulations differentially exposed to drinking water VOCs (trichloroethylene and related solvents). Populations served by community water supplies were classified into exposure categories according to VOC contamination status based on 1984-85 sampling data. Leukemia incidence data (1979-84) were collected from a population-based cancer registry. For females, the standardized incidence ratio was elevated only in towns in the highest of three exposure categories. No association was observed in males in any of the exposure categories. A Poisson regression analysis of the data, using finer exposure strata, indicated an increase in risk among females with increasing level of contamination which appeared to be distributed evenly across all age strata. The rate ratio for females at the highest exposure stratum for total non-THM VOCs compared to the least exposed stratum was 1.68. The observed association appears to suggest that drinking water contaminated with VOCs may increase the incidence of leukemia among exposed females, but caution is advised in the interpretation of these results because of the uncertainties inherent in ecologic studies.

  20. Drinking water contamination and the incidence of leukemia: an ecologic study.

    PubMed

    Fagliano, J; Berry, M; Bove, F; Burke, T

    1990-10-01

    An ecologic study was performed to examine the relation between the incidence of leukemias and the occurrence of volatile organic chemical (VOC) contamination of drinking water supplies within a study area comprised of subpopulations differentially exposed to drinking water VOCs (trichloroethylene and related solvents). Populations served by community water supplies were classified into exposure categories according to VOC contamination status based on 1984-85 sampling data. Leukemia incidence data (1979-84) were collected from a population-based cancer registry. For females, the standardized incidence ratio was elevated only in towns in the highest of three exposure categories. No association was observed in males in any of the exposure categories. A Poisson regression analysis of the data, using finer exposure strata, indicated an increase in risk among females with increasing level of contamination which appeared to be distributed evenly across all age strata. The rate ratio for females at the highest exposure stratum for total non-THM VOCs compared to the least exposed stratum was 1.68. The observed association appears to suggest that drinking water contaminated with VOCs may increase the incidence of leukemia among exposed females, but caution is advised in the interpretation of these results because of the uncertainties inherent in ecologic studies.

  1. Ecological Factors and Adolescent Marijuana Use: Results of a Prospective Study in Santiago, Chile

    PubMed Central

    Delva, Jorge; Lee, Wonhyung; Sanchez, Ninive; Andrade, Fernando H.; Grogan-Kaylor, Andrew; Sanhueza, Guillermo; Ho, Michelle

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: Despite the growing evidence that ecological factors contribute to substance use, the relationship of ecological factors and illicit drugs such as marijuana use is not well understood, particularly among adolescents in Latin America. Guided by social disorganization and social stress theories, we prospectively examined the association of disaggregated neighborhood characteristics with marijuana use among adolescents in Santiago, Chile, and tested if these relationships varied by sex. Methods: Data for this study are from 725 community-dwelling adolescents participating in the Santiago Longitudinal Study, a study of substance using behaviors among urban adolescents in Santiago, Chile. Adolescents completed a two-hour interviewer administered questionnaire with questions about drug use and factors related to drug using behaviors. Results: As the neighborhood levels of drug availability at baseline increased, but not crime or noxious environment, adolescents had higher odds of occasions of marijuana use at follow up, approximately 2 years later (odds ratio [OR] = 1.39; 95% CI = 1.16–1.66), even after controlling for the study’s covariates. No interactions by sex were significant. Discussion: The findings suggest that “poverty”, “crime”, and “drug problems” may not be synonyms and thus can be understood discretely. As Latin American countries re-examine their drug policies, especially those concerning decriminalizing marijuana use, the findings suggest that attempts to reduce adolescent marijuana use in disadvantaged neighborhoods may do best if efforts are concentrated on specific features of the “substance abuse environment”. PMID:24662965

  2. Ecological periodic tables for benthic macrofaunal usage of estuarine habitats : Insights from a case study in Tillamook bay, Oregon, USA

    EPA Science Inventory

    This study validates the ecological relevance of estuarine habitat types to the benthic macrofaunal community and, together with previous similar studies, suggests they can serve as elements in ecological periodic tables of benthic macrofaunal usage in the bioregion. We compared...

  3. Assessing Conifer Ray Parenchyma for Ecological Studies: Pitfalls and Guidelines

    PubMed Central

    von Arx, Georg; Arzac, Alberto; Olano, José M.; Fonti, Patrick

    2015-01-01

    Ray parenchyma is an essential tissue for tree functioning and survival. This living tissue plays a major role for storage and transport of water, nutrients, and non-structural carbohydrates (NSC), thus regulating xylem hydraulics and growth. However, despite the importance of rays for tree carbon and water relations, methodological challenges hamper knowledge about ray intra- and inter-tree variability and its ecological meaning. In this study we provide a methodological toolbox for soundly quantifying spatial and temporal variability of different ray features. Anatomical ray features were surveyed in different cutting planes (cross-sectional, tangential, and radial) using quantitative image analysis on stem-wood micro-sections sampled from 41 mature Scots pines (Pinus sylvestris). The percentage of ray surface (PERPAR), a proxy for ray volume, was compared among cutting planes and between early- and latewood to assess measurement-induced variability. Different tangential ray metrics were correlated to assess their similarities. The accuracy of cross-sectional and tangential measurements for PERPAR estimates as a function of number of samples and the measured wood surface was assessed using bootstrapping statistical technique. Tangential sections offered the best 3D insight of ray integration into the xylem and provided the most accurate estimates of PERPAR, with 10 samples of 4 mm2 showing an estimate within ±6.0% of the true mean PERPAR (relative 95% confidence interval, CI95), and 20 samples of 4 mm2 showing a CI95 of ±4.3%. Cross-sections were most efficient for establishment of time series, and facilitated comparisons with other widely used xylem anatomical features. Earlywood had significantly lower PERPAR (5.77 vs. 6.18%) and marginally fewer initiating rays than latewood. In comparison to tangential sections, PERPAR was systematically overestimated (6.50 vs. 4.92%) and required approximately twice the sample area for similar accuracy. Radial cuttings

  4. Studies on marine oil spills and their ecological damage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mei, Hong; Yin, Yanjie

    2009-09-01

    The sources of marine oil spills are mainly from accidents of marine oil tankers or freighters, marine oil-drilling platforms, marine oil pipelines, marine oilfields, terrestrial pollution, oil-bearing atmosphere, and offshore oil production equipment. It is concluded upon analysis that there are two main reasons for marine oil spills: (I) The motive for huge economic benefits of oil industry owners and oil shipping agents far surpasses their sense of ecological risks. (II) Marine ecological safety has not become the main concern of national security. Oil spills are disasters because humans spare no efforts to get economic benefits from oil. The present paper draws another conclusion that marine ecological damage caused by oil spills can be roughly divided into two categories: damage to marine resource value (direct value) and damage to marine ecosystem service value (indirect value). Marine oil spills cause damage to marine biological, fishery, seawater, tourism and mineral resources to various extents, which contributes to the lower quality and value of marine resources.

  5. Ecological niche transferability using invasive species as a case study.

    PubMed

    Fernández, Miguel; Hamilton, Healy

    2015-01-01

    Species distribution modeling is widely applied to predict invasive species distributions and species range shifts under climate change. Accurate predictions depend upon meeting the assumption that ecological niches are conserved, i.e., spatially or temporally transferable. Here we present a multi-taxon comparative analysis of niche conservatism using biological invasion events well documented in natural history museum collections. Our goal is to assess spatial transferability of the climatic niche of a range of noxious terrestrial invasive species using two complementary approaches. First we compare species' native versus invasive ranges in environmental space using two distinct methods, Principal Components Analysis and Mahalanobis distance. Second we compare species' native versus invaded ranges in geographic space as estimated using the species distribution modeling technique Maxent and the comparative index Hellinger's I. We find that species exhibit a range of responses, from almost complete transferability, in which the invaded niches completely overlap with the native niches, to a complete dissociation between native and invaded ranges. Intermediate responses included expansion of dimension attributable to either temperature or precipitation derived variables, as well as niche expansion in multiple dimensions. We conclude that the ecological niche in the native range is generally a poor predictor of invaded range and, by analogy, the ecological niche may be a poor predictor of range shifts under climate change. We suggest that assessing dimensions of niche transferability prior to standard species distribution modeling may improve the understanding of species' dynamics in the invaded range.

  6. White Paper: Summary of the NOAA Workshop - Ecological Effect of Sea Level Rise in the Florida Panhandle and Coastal Alabama: Research and Modeling Needs

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Center for Sponsored Coastal Ocean Research (CSCOR) is addressing current and future impacts to ecological systems due to the long term effect of sea level rise due to climate change and subsidence on coastal ecosystems through the peer-reviewed research program, the Ecologic...

  7. [Assessment of landscape ecological security and optimization of landscape pattern based on spatial principal component analysis and resistance model in arid inland area: A case study of Ganzhou District, Zhangye City, Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Pan, Jing-hu; Liu, Xiao

    2015-10-01

    Starting from ecological environment of inland river in arid area, the distribution of ecological security pattern of Ganzhou District was obtained by using the theory of landscape ecology, spatial principal component analysis (SPCA) and GIS techniques. Ten factors such as altitude, slope, soil erosion, vegetation coverage, and distance from road, were selected as the constraint conditions. According to the minimum cumulative resistance (MCR) model of landscape, the ecological corridor and nodes were established to optimize the structure and function of ecological function network. The results showed that the comprehensive ecological security situation of the research area was on the average. Area of moderate level of security was 1318.7 km2, being the largest and accounting for 36.7% of the research area. The area of low level of security was mainly located in the northern part and accounted for 19.9% of the study area. With points, lines and surfaces being interlaced, a regional ecological network was constructed, which was consisted of six ecological corridor, 14 ecological nodes, a large ecological source region and a plurality of small area source region, and could effectively improve ecological security level of the study area.

  8. The population ecology of infectious diseases: pertussis in Thailand as a case study.

    PubMed

    Blackwood, J C; Cummings, D A T; Broutin, H; Iamsirithaworn, S; Rohani, P

    2012-12-01

    Many of the fundamental concepts in studying infectious diseases are rooted in population ecology. We describe the importance of population ecology in exploring central issues in infectious disease research including identifying the drivers and dynamics of host-pathogen interactions and pathogen persistence, and evaluating the success of public health policies. The use of ecological concepts in infectious disease research is demonstrated with simple theoretical examples in addition to an analysis of case notification data of pertussis, a childhood respiratory disease, in Thailand as a case study. We stress that further integration of these fields will have significant impacts in infectious diseases research.

  9. Sensitivity of ecological soil-screening levels for metals to exposure model parameterization and toxicity reference values.

    PubMed

    Sample, Bradley E; Fairbrother, Anne; Kaiser, Ashley; Law, Sheryl; Adams, Bill

    2014-10-01

    Ecological soil-screening levels (Eco-SSLs) were developed by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) for the purposes of setting conservative soil screening values that can be used to eliminate the need for further ecological assessment for specific analytes at a given site. Ecological soil-screening levels for wildlife represent a simplified dietary exposure model solved in terms of soil concentrations to produce exposure equal to a no-observed-adverse-effect toxicity reference value (TRV). Sensitivity analyses were performed for 6 avian and mammalian model species, and 16 metals/metalloids for which Eco-SSLs have been developed. The relative influence of model parameters was expressed as the absolute value of the range of variation observed in the resulting soil concentration when exposure is equal to the TRV. Rank analysis of variance was used to identify parameters with greatest influence on model output. For both birds and mammals, soil ingestion displayed the broadest overall range (variability), although TRVs consistently had the greatest influence on calculated soil concentrations; bioavailability in food was consistently the least influential parameter, although an important site-specific variable. Relative importance of parameters differed by trophic group. Soil ingestion ranked 2nd for carnivores and herbivores, but was 4th for invertivores. Different patterns were exhibited, depending on which parameter, trophic group, and analyte combination was considered. The approach for TRV selection was also examined in detail, with Cu as the representative analyte. The underlying assumption that generic body-weight-normalized TRVs can be used to derive protective levels for any species is not supported by the data. Whereas the use of site-, species-, and analyte-specific exposure parameters is recommended to reduce variation in exposure estimates (soil protection level), improvement of TRVs is more problematic.

  10. Sensitivity of ecological soil-screening levels for metals to exposure model parameterization and toxicity reference values

    PubMed Central

    Sample, Bradley E; Fairbrother, Anne; Kaiser, Ashley; Law, Sheryl; Adams, Bill

    2014-01-01

    Ecological soil-screening levels (Eco-SSLs) were developed by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) for the purposes of setting conservative soil screening values that can be used to eliminate the need for further ecological assessment for specific analytes at a given site. Ecological soil-screening levels for wildlife represent a simplified dietary exposure model solved in terms of soil concentrations to produce exposure equal to a no-observed-adverse-effect toxicity reference value (TRV). Sensitivity analyses were performed for 6 avian and mammalian model species, and 16 metals/metalloids for which Eco-SSLs have been developed. The relative influence of model parameters was expressed as the absolute value of the range of variation observed in the resulting soil concentration when exposure is equal to the TRV. Rank analysis of variance was used to identify parameters with greatest influence on model output. For both birds and mammals, soil ingestion displayed the broadest overall range (variability), although TRVs consistently had the greatest influence on calculated soil concentrations; bioavailability in food was consistently the least influential parameter, although an important site-specific variable. Relative importance of parameters differed by trophic group. Soil ingestion ranked 2nd for carnivores and herbivores, but was 4th for invertivores. Different patterns were exhibited, depending on which parameter, trophic group, and analyte combination was considered. The approach for TRV selection was also examined in detail, with Cu as the representative analyte. The underlying assumption that generic body-weight–normalized TRVs can be used to derive protective levels for any species is not supported by the data. Whereas the use of site-, species-, and analyte-specific exposure parameters is recommended to reduce variation in exposure estimates (soil protection level), improvement of TRVs is more problematic. Environ Toxicol Chem 2014

  11. “Real time” genetic manipulation: a new tool for ecological field studies

    PubMed Central

    Schäfer, Martin; Brütting, Christoph; Gase, Klaus; Reichelt, Michael; Baldwin, Ian; Meldau, Stefan

    2014-01-01

    Summary Field experiments with transgenic plants often reveal the functional significance of genetic traits important for plant performance in their natural environments. Until now, only constitutive overexpression, ectopic expression and gene silencing methods have been used to analyze gene-related phenotypes in natural habitats. These methods do not allow sufficient control over gene expression to study ecological interactions in real-time, genetic traits playing essential roles in development, or dose-dependent effects. We applied the sensitive dexamethasone (DEX)-inducible pOp6/LhGR expression system to the ecological model plant Nicotiana attenuata and established a lanolin-based DEX application method to facilitate ectopic gene expression and RNAi mediated gene silencing in the field and under challenging conditions (e.g. high temperature, wind and UV radiation). Fully established field-grown plants were used to silence phytoene desaturase and thereby cause photobleaching only in specific plant sectors, and to activate expression of the cytokinin (CK) biosynthesis gene isopentenyl transferase (ipt). We used ipt expression to analyze the role of CK’s in both the glasshouse and field to understand resistance to the native herbivore Tupiocoris notatus, which attack plants at small spatial scales. By spatially restricting ipt expression and elevating CK levels in single leaves, T. notatus damage increased, demonstrating CK’s role in this plant-herbivore interaction at a small scale. As the arena of most ecological interactions is highly constrained in time and space, these tools will advance the genetic analysis of dynamic traits that matter for plant performance in nature. PMID:23906159

  12. 'Real time' genetic manipulation: a new tool for ecological field studies.

    PubMed

    Schäfer, Martin; Brütting, Christoph; Gase, Klaus; Reichelt, Michael; Baldwin, Ian; Meldau, Stefan

    2013-11-01

    Field experiments with transgenic plants often reveal the functional significance of genetic traits that are important for the performance of the plants in their natural environments. Until now, only constitutive overexpression, ectopic expression and gene silencing methods have been used to analyze gene-related phenotypes in natural habitats. These methods do not allow sufficient control over gene expression for the study of ecological interactions in real time, of genetic traits that play essential roles in development, or of dose-dependent effects. We applied the sensitive dexamethasone (DEX)-inducible pOp6/LhGR expression system to the ecological model plant Nicotiana attenuata and established a lanolin-based DEX application method to facilitate ectopic gene expression and RNA interference-mediated gene silencing in the field and under challenging conditions (e.g. high temperature, wind and UV radiation). Fully established field-grown plants were used to silence phytoene desaturase and thereby cause photobleaching only in specific plant sectors, and to activate expression of the cytokinin (CK) biosynthesis gene isopentenyl transferase (ipt). We used ipt expression to analyze the role of CKs in both the glasshouse and the field to understand resistance to the native herbivore Tupiocoris notatus, which attacks plants at small spatial scales. By spatially restricting ipt expression and elevating CK levels in single leaves, damage by T. notatus increased, demonstrating the role of CKs in this plant-herbivore interaction at a small scale. As the arena of most ecological interactions is highly constrained in time and space, these tools will advance the genetic analysis of dynamic traits that matter for plant performance in nature.

  13. Implementation of basic studies in the ecological restoration of surface-mined land

    SciTech Connect

    Tischew, S.; Kirmer, A.

    2007-06-15

    This paper focuses on attempts to encourage a new state of the art in the ecological restoration of surface-mined land in Germany. On most of these sites, the application of traditional recultivation methods often destroys valuable ecological potential by leveling of the surface, ameliorating of nutrient-poor substrates, and seeding or planting of species not suited to the present habitat conditions. Many studies have shown that even highly disturbed ecosystems, such as large mining areas, can regenerate spontaneously over long-term periods. Colonization processes were influenced by the availability of diaspore sources as well as the suitability of sites for establishment. The predictability of succession could be improved by the identification of switch points in successional pathways depending on age and conditions of the sites. Based on the developmental potential, orientation by nature and biodiversity are selected as main targets for priority areas for nature conservation in mining sites. On priority areas restoration measures must be restricted to the use of near-natural methods (e.g., application of fresh, diaspore-rich plant clipping material, dumping of overburden with seed bank and vegetative propagules, seeding of site-specific, local seed mixtures) that are very successful in preventing erosion and accelerating vegetation development. Despite the success of these methods, the transfer of knowledge between scientists, practitioners, and administrative organizations has proved to be insufficient. Therefore, one of the main tasks in ecological restoration must be the inclusion of all stakeholders involved in decision-making processes and the establishment of a network of excellence to enhance the exchange of knowledge.

  14. Population-level ecological risk assessment of planar polychlorinated aromatic hydrocarbons in great cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo) around Tokyo Bay, Japan.

    PubMed

    Murata, Mariko; Masunaga, Shigeki; Nakanishi, Junko

    2003-10-01

    Assessment of population-level ecological risk posed by planar polychlorinated aromatic hydrocarbons (p-PCAHs; including polychlorinated dibenzo-p-dioxins, polychlorinated dibenzofurans, and dioxintike polychlorinated biphenyls) in sediment of Tokyo Bay (Japan) and rivers via fish ingestion to the great cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo) population was conducted by means of a probabilistic approach. Population decline risk was used as an indicator of population-level effects and compared with other indicators of effects. The increment of egg mortality risk posed by current p-PCAH levels was estimated to be 11.7%. This risk was interpreted in terms of both the increase of the risk of population decline in a 10-year period on a recently abundant cormorant population, and the reduction in population growth rate (r). Population decline risks of 20% and below were estimated to be 16% for the reference population and 32% for the exposed population, whereas the reduction in r was estimated to be 10%. The risk expressed in terms of population viability is a more susceptible measure and a more easily understandable indicator than both egg mortality risk as an individual-level risk and the reduction in r. Translating the effects due to pollutants into the risk on population viability will make ecological risk assessment more conductive to risk management.

  15. Associations between green space and health in English cities: an ecological, cross-sectional study.

    PubMed

    Bixby, Honor; Hodgson, Susan; Fortunato, Léa; Hansell, Anna; Fecht, Daniela

    2015-01-01

    Green space has been identified as a modifiable feature of the urban environment and associations with physiological and psychological health have been reported at the local level. This study aims to assess whether these associations between health and green space are transferable to a larger scale, with English cities as the unit of analysis. We used an ecological, cross-sectional study design. We classified satellite-based land cover data to quantify green space coverage for the 50 largest cities in England. We assessed associations between city green space coverage with risk of death from all causes, cardiovascular disease, lung cancer and suicide between 2002 and 2009 using Poisson regression with random effect. After adjustment for age, income deprivation and air pollution, we found that at the city level the risk of death from all causes and a priori selected causes, for men and women, did not significantly differ between the greenest and least green cities. These findings suggest that the local health effects of urban green space observed at the neighbourhood level in some studies do not transfer to the city level. Further work is needed to establish how urban residents interact with local green space, in order to ascertain the most relevant measures of green space.

  16. Biochemical Study of Mixed Culture Prototype in a Closed Ecological System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tischer, R. G.

    1960-01-01

    Since June 1, 1960, the date of initiation of this research project, efforts have been directed toward studying cultural and fermentation patterns and the methodology of pure culture isolation of prototype microorganisms to be employed in closed ecological systems.

  17. STABLE ISOTOPES IN ECOLOGICAL STUDIES: NEW DEVELOPMENTS IN MIXING MODELS (URUGUAY)

    EPA Science Inventory

    Stable isotopes are increasingly being used as tracers in ecological studies. One application uses isotopic ratios to quantify the proportional contributions of multiple sources to a mixture. Examples include pollution sources for air or water bodies, food sources for animals, ...

  18. Ecological studies related to construction of the Defense Waste Processing Facility on the Savannah River Site

    SciTech Connect

    Scott, D.E.; Pechmann, J.H.K.; Knox, J.N.; Estes, R.A.; McGregor, J.H.; Bailey, K.

    1988-12-01

    The Savannah River Ecology Laboratory has completed 10 years of ecological studies related to the construction of the Defense Waste Processing Facility (DWPF) on the Savannah River Site. This progress report examines water quality studies on streams peripheral to the DWPF construction site and examines the effectiveness of refuge ponds'' in ameliorating the effects of construction on local amphibians. Individual papers on these topics are indexed separately. 93 refs., 15 figs., 15 tabs. (MHB)

  19. Wetlands in the ecological risk assessment process: A case study

    SciTech Connect

    Saban, L.B.

    1995-12-31

    In the past few years, the ecological risk assessment (ERA) process as outlined in the EPA document Framework for Ecological Risk Assessment has been successfully used to assess risk to birds, mammals, aquatic organisms, plants, and to a limited extent, reptiles and amphibians, but has only recently been applied to wetlands. Due to the unique role that wetlands play in the environment as sources and sinks for nutrients, sediment retention, high productivity, habitat transition zones, aquifer recharge, high diversity and richness of biota, and aesthetic value, it is important to consider the entire wetland system in the ERA process. Because nearly sixty percent of Superfund sites are located in or near wetlands, a comprehensive approach is proposed to evaluate potential risks to flora and fauna in these wetland environments. Using the delineation and functional assessment techniques developed by wetland scientists, an estuarine wetland in western Washington was evaluated within the scope of ERA`S. The ERA was applied to the wetland using functional assessments as an integral part of the problem formulation phase of the risk assessment process. Applying the ERA process to wetlands enhances the functional assessment process and helps to define critical elements to evaluate within wetland systems. The results of this risk assessment help to define patches within a landscape that are potentially at risk and how to prioritize remedial actions.

  20. Applications of the rep-PCR DNA fingerprinting technique to study microbial diversity, ecology and evolution.

    PubMed

    Ishii, Satoshi; Sadowsky, Michael J

    2009-04-01

    A large number of repetitive DNA sequences are found in multiple sites in the genomes of numerous bacteria, archaea and eukarya. While the functions of many of these repetitive sequence elements are unknown, they have proven to be useful as the basis of several powerful tools for use in molecular diagnostics, medical microbiology, epidemiological analyses and environmental microbiology. The repetitive sequence-based PCR or rep-PCR DNA fingerprint technique uses primers targeting several of these repetitive elements and PCR to generate unique DNA profiles or 'fingerprints' of individual microbial strains. Although this technique has been extensively used to examine diversity among variety of prokaryotic microorganisms, rep-PCR DNA fingerprinting can also be applied to microbial ecology and microbial evolution studies since it has the power to distinguish microbes at the strain or isolate level. Recent advancement in rep-PCR methodology has resulted in increased accuracy, reproducibility and throughput. In this minireview, we summarize recent improvements in rep-PCR DNA fingerprinting methodology, and discuss its applications to address fundamentally important questions in microbial ecology and evolution.

  1. Exploring the mechanisms of ecological land change based on the spatial autoregressive model: a case study of the Poyang Lake Eco-Economic Zone, China.

    PubMed

    Xie, Hualin; Liu, Zhifei; Wang, Peng; Liu, Guiying; Lu, Fucai

    2013-12-31

    Ecological land is one of the key resources and conditions for the survival of humans because it can provide ecosystem services and is particularly important to public health and safety. It is extremely valuable for effective ecological management to explore the evolution mechanisms of ecological land. Based on spatial statistical analyses, we explored the spatial disparities and primary potential drivers of ecological land change in the Poyang Lake Eco-economic Zone of China. The results demonstrated that the global Moran's I value is 0.1646 during the 1990 to 2005 time period and indicated significant positive spatial correlation (p < 0.05). The results also imply that the clustering trend of ecological land changes weakened in the study area. Some potential driving forces were identified by applying the spatial autoregressive model in this study. The results demonstrated that the higher economic development level and industrialization rate were the main drivers for the faster change of ecological land in the study area. This study also tested the superiority of the spatial autoregressive model to study the mechanisms of ecological land change by comparing it with the traditional linear regressive model.

  2. [The results of complex social and ecologic study in the city of Ufa].

    PubMed

    Zakharov, I D; Magasumov, A M; Simonova, N I; Eĭdel'man, Ia L; Simenido, Iu V

    1997-01-01

    The authors present results of social and ecologic study carried out in Ufa. The results describe the course of ecologically important processes and phenomena in correlation with the public subjective understanding. Public health is influenced by hygienic parameters of food and water quality as well as a complex of social, economic and psychologic factors. Weak correlation between those parameters and ambient air pollution necessitates more accurate approach to ecologic mapping of cities and to manipulation with data on lower atmosphere pollution with chemical hazards.

  3. Ecological studies on the mosquito vectors of Japanese encephalitis

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, C. J.; Chen, P. S.

    1973-01-01

    These studies were conducted in China (Province of Taiwan) to assess the populations of known and potential mosquito vectors of Japanese encephalitis in a typical endemic area, and to evaluate a variety of sampling techniques, some of which were new. Culex annulus was found to be the predominant vector species in the study area during the epidemic season; C. tritaeniorhynchus was never abundant, and C. fuscocephalus was rare. C. annulus and C. tritaeniorhynchus were active throughout the year, although populations were at a low level during the cool season. The results show that attention must be given to C. annulus as a possible vector where it is present in JE foci. The collection of mosquitos during the early evening hours from buffalo bait tethered outdoors was found to be the most efficient and sensitive means of monitoring vector populations throughout the year. During the JE epidemic season remarkable results were obtained with a vacuum sweep-net. PMID:4367779

  4. [Assessment and early warning of land ecological security in rapidly urbanizing coastal area: A case study of Caofeidian new district, Hebei, China].

    PubMed

    Zhang, Li; Chen, Ying; Wang, Shu-tao; Men, Ming-xin; Xu, Hao

    2015-08-01

    Assessment and early warning of land ecological security (LES) in rapidly urbanizing coastal area is an important issue to ensure sustainable land use and effective maintenance of land ecological security. In this study, an index system for the land ecological security of Caofeidian new district was established based on the Pressure-State-Response (P-S-R) model. Initial assessment units of 1 km x 1 km created with the remote sensing data and GIS methods were spatially interpolated to a fine pixel size of 30 m x 30 m, which were combined with the early warning method (using classification tree method) to evaluate the land ecological security of Caofeidian in 2005 and 2013. The early warning level was classed into four categories: security with degradation potential, sub-security with slow degradation, sub-security with rapid degradation, and insecurity. Result indicated that, from 2005 to 2013, the average LES of Caofeidian dropped from 0.55 to 0.52, indicating a degradation of land ecological security from medium security level to medium-low security level. The areas at the levels of insecurity with rapid degradation were mainly located in the rapid urbanization areas, illustrating that rapid expansion of urban construction land was the key factor to the deterioration of the regional land ecological security. Industrial District, Shilihai town and Nanpu saltern, in which the lands at the levels of insecurity and sub-security with rapid degradation or slow degradation accounted for 58.3%, 98.9% and 81.2% of their respective districts, were at the stage of high early warning. Thus, land ecological security regulation for these districts should be strengthened in near future. The study could provide a reference for land use planning and ecological protection of Caofeidian new district.

  5. A study of ecological red-line area partitioning in the Chishui River Basin in Guizhou

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, S. F.; An, Y. L.

    2016-08-01

    Maintaining ecosystem balance and realizing the strategic goal of sustainable development are key objectives in the field of environmental sciences. Accordingly, drawing ecological red lines in sensitive and vulnerable environmental areas and important ecological function areas, determining the distribution range of ecological red-line areas, providing scientific guidance for developmental activities, and effectively managing the ecological environment are significant work tasks supported by policy guidance from the State Council and from knowledge gained in educational circles. Taking the Chishui River Basin in Guizhou as the study object, this research selected water and soil loss sensitivity, as well as assessments of karst rocky desertification sensitivity as background assessments of the eco-environment. Furthermore, the functions of soil conservation, water conservation, and biodiversity protection were integrated with exploitation-prohibited areas, and an organic combination of ecological needs and social service functions was created. Spatial comprehensive overlay analysis and processing revealed that the combination marked nine major ecological red-line areas in a total area of 5,030.58 km2, which occupied 44.16% of the total basin area. By combining the current eco-environmental situation of the Chishui River Basin with the marked out red-line areas, this research proposed corresponding ecological red-line area management suggestions. These suggestions are expected to provide a scientific foundation for eco-environmental protection and subsequent scientific research in Chishui River Basin.

  6. On the application of multilevel modeling in environmental and ecological studies

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Qian, S.S.; Cuffney, T.F.; Alameddine, I.; McMahon, G.; Reckhow, K.H.

    2010-01-01

    This paper illustrates the advantages of a multilevel/hierarchical approach for predictive modeling, including flexibility of model formulation, explicitly accounting for hierarchical structure in the data, and the ability to predict the outcome of new cases. As a generalization of the classical approach, the multilevel modeling approach explicitly models the hierarchical structure in the data by considering both the within- and between-group variances leading to a partial pooling of data across all levels in the hierarchy. The modeling framework provides means for incorporating variables at different spatiotemporal scales. The examples used in this paper illustrate the iterative process of model fitting and evaluation, a process that can lead to improved understanding of the system being studied. ?? 2010 by the Ecological Society of America.

  7. An ecological study for Sri Lanka about health effects of coconut.

    PubMed

    Athauda, L K; Wickremasinghe, A R; Kumarendran, B; Kasturiratne, A

    2015-09-01

    An ecological correlation study was conducted to determine the association between consumption of coconut products and cardiovascular disease (CVD) deaths in Sri Lanka. Data on coconut consumption patterns from 1961 to 2006 were abstracted from the FAO database, and mortality data from reports of the Department of Census and Statistics, and UN databases. Correlational and regression analyses were carried out. There was no increase in the per capita consumption of coconut products from 1961 to 2006 (range 54.1-76.2kg/ capita/year). The CVD death rates and the proportionate mortality rate due to CVD increased from 1961 to 2006. CVD death rates were significantly associated with per capita GDP, percentage of urban population, and elderly dependency ratio but not consumption of coconut products after adjusting for the other variables (R2=0.94). The results do not provide evidence at the population level that consumption of coconut products increases mortality due to cardiovascular diseases.

  8. Contrasting effects of rising CO2 on primary production and ecological stoichiometry at different nutrient levels.

    PubMed

    Verspagen, Jolanda M H; Van de Waal, Dedmer B; Finke, Jan F; Visser, Petra M; Huisman, Jef

    2014-08-01

    Although rising CO2 concentrations are thought to promote the growth and alter the carbon : nutrient stoichiometry of primary producers, several studies have reported conflicting results. To reconcile these contrasting results, we tested the following hypotheses: rising CO2 levels (1) will increase phytoplankton biomass more at high nutrient loads than at low nutrient loads, but (2) will increase their carbon : nutrient stoichiometry more at low than at high nutrient loads. We formulated a mathematical model to predict dynamic changes in phytoplankton population density, elemental stoichiometry and inorganic carbon chemistry in response to rising CO2 . The model was tested in chemostat experiments with the freshwater cyanobacterium Microcystis aeruginosa. The model predictions and experimental results confirmed the hypotheses. Our findings provide a novel theoretical framework to understand and predict effects of rising CO2 concentrations on primary producers and their nutritional quality as food for herbivores under different nutrient conditions.

  9. Studying the Complex Communities of Ants and Their Symbionts Using Ecological Network Analysis.

    PubMed

    Ivens, Aniek B F; von Beeren, Christoph; Blüthgen, Nico; Kronauer, Daniel J C

    2016-01-01

    Ant colonies provide well-protected and resource-rich environments for a plethora of symbionts. Historically, most studies of ants and their symbionts have had a narrow taxonomic scope, often focusing on a single ant or symbiont species. Here we discuss the prospects of studying these assemblies in a community ecology context using the framework of ecological network analysis. We introduce three basic network metrics that we consider particularly relevant for improving our knowledge of ant-symbiont communities: interaction specificity, network modularity, and phylogenetic signal. We then discuss army ant symbionts as examples of large and primarily parasitic communities, and symbiotic sternorrhynchans as examples of generally smaller and primarily mutualistic communities in the context of these network analyses. We argue that this approach will provide new and complementary insights into the evolutionary and ecological dynamics between ants and their many associates, and will facilitate comparisons across different ant-symbiont assemblages as well as across different types of ecological networks.

  10. Ecological speciation in the tropics: insights from comparative genetic studies in Amazonia

    PubMed Central

    Beheregaray, Luciano B.; Cooke, Georgina M.; Chao, Ning L.; Landguth, Erin L.

    2015-01-01

    Evolution creates and sustains biodiversity via adaptive changes in ecologically relevant traits. Ecologically mediated selection contributes to genetic divergence both in the presence or absence of geographic isolation between populations, and is considered an important driver of speciation. Indeed, the genetics of ecological speciation is becoming increasingly studied across a variety of taxa and environments. In this paper we review the literature of ecological speciation in the tropics. We report on low research productivity in tropical ecosystems and discuss reasons accounting for the rarity of studies. We argue for research programs that simultaneously address biogeographical and taxonomic questions in the tropics, while effectively assessing relationships between reproductive isolation and ecological divergence. To contribute toward this goal, we propose a new framework for ecological speciation that integrates information from phylogenetics, phylogeography, population genomics, and simulations in evolutionary landscape genetics (ELG). We introduce components of the framework, describe ELG simulations (a largely unexplored approach in ecological speciation), and discuss design and experimental feasibility within the context of tropical research. We then use published genetic datasets from populations of five codistributed Amazonian fish species to assess the performance of the framework in studies of tropical speciation. We suggest that these approaches can assist in distinguishing the relative contribution of natural selection from biogeographic history in the origin of biodiversity, even in complex ecosystems such as Amazonia. We also discuss on how to assess ecological speciation using ELG simulations that include selection. These integrative frameworks have considerable potential to enhance conservation management in biodiversity rich ecosystems and to complement historical biogeographic and evolutionary studies of tropical biotas. PMID:25653668

  11. Ecological speciation in the tropics: insights from comparative genetic studies in Amazonia.

    PubMed

    Beheregaray, Luciano B; Cooke, Georgina M; Chao, Ning L; Landguth, Erin L

    2014-01-01

    Evolution creates and sustains biodiversity via adaptive changes in ecologically relevant traits. Ecologically mediated selection contributes to genetic divergence both in the presence or absence of geographic isolation between populations, and is considered an important driver of speciation. Indeed, the genetics of ecological speciation is becoming increasingly studied across a variety of taxa and environments. In this paper we review the literature of ecological speciation in the tropics. We report on low research productivity in tropical ecosystems and discuss reasons accounting for the rarity of studies. We argue for research programs that simultaneously address biogeographical and taxonomic questions in the tropics, while effectively assessing relationships between reproductive isolation and ecological divergence. To contribute toward this goal, we propose a new framework for ecological speciation that integrates information from phylogenetics, phylogeography, population genomics, and simulations in evolutionary landscape genetics (ELG). We introduce components of the framework, describe ELG simulations (a largely unexplored approach in ecological speciation), and discuss design and experimental feasibility within the context of tropical research. We then use published genetic datasets from populations of five codistributed Amazonian fish species to assess the performance of the framework in studies of tropical speciation. We suggest that these approaches can assist in distinguishing the relative contribution of natural selection from biogeographic history in the origin of biodiversity, even in complex ecosystems such as Amazonia. We also discuss on how to assess ecological speciation using ELG simulations that include selection. These integrative frameworks have considerable potential to enhance conservation management in biodiversity rich ecosystems and to complement historical biogeographic and evolutionary studies of tropical biotas.

  12. Climate Change, Sea-Level Rise and Implications for Coastal and Estuarine Shoreline Management with Particular Reference to the Ecology of Intertidal Benthic Macrofauna in NW Europe.

    PubMed

    Fujii, Toyonobu

    2012-11-05

    In many European estuaries, extensive areas of intertidal habitats consist of bare mudflats and sandflats that harbour a very high abundance and biomass of macrobenthic invertebrates. The high stocks of macrobenthos in turn provide important food sources for the higher trophic levels such as fish and shorebirds. Climate change and associated sea-level rise will have potential to cause changes in coastal and estuarine physical properties in a number of ways and thereby influence the ecology of estuarine dependent organisms. Although the mechanisms involved in biological responses resulting from such environmental changes are complex, the ecological effects are likely to be significant for the estuarine benthic macrofauna and hence the consumers they support. This paper reviews the utilisation patterns of estuarine intertidal habitats by shorebirds, fish and crustaceans, as well as factors affecting the distribution, abundance and biomass of estuarine macrobenthos that is known to be important food source for these estuarine predators. This study also provides simple conceptual models of the likely impacts of sea-level rise on the physical and biological elements of estuarine intertidal habitats, and implications of these results are discussed in the context of sustainable long term flood and coastal management in estuarine environments.

  13. Climate Change, Sea-Level Rise and Implications for Coastal and Estuarine Shoreline Management with Particular Reference to the Ecology of Intertidal Benthic Macrofauna in NW Europe

    PubMed Central

    Fujii, Toyonobu

    2012-01-01

    In many European estuaries, extensive areas of intertidal habitats consist of bare mudflats and sandflats that harbour a very high abundance and biomass of macrobenthic invertebrates. The high stocks of macrobenthos in turn provide important food sources for the higher trophic levels such as fish and shorebirds. Climate change and associated sea-level rise will have potential to cause changes in coastal and estuarine physical properties in a number of ways and thereby influence the ecology of estuarine dependent organisms. Although the mechanisms involved in biological responses resulting from such environmental changes are complex, the ecological effects are likely to be significant for the estuarine benthic macrofauna and hence the consumers they support. This paper reviews the utilisation patterns of estuarine intertidal habitats by shorebirds, fish and crustaceans, as well as factors affecting the distribution, abundance and biomass of estuarine macrobenthos that is known to be important food source for these estuarine predators. This study also provides simple conceptual models of the likely impacts of sea-level rise on the physical and biological elements of estuarine intertidal habitats, and implications of these results are discussed in the context of sustainable long term flood and coastal management in estuarine environments. PMID:24832510

  14. An Ecological Study of Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction, Part 1

    PubMed Central

    McGrath, Timothy M.; Waddington, Gordon; Scarvell, Jennie M.; Ball, Nick; Creer, Rob; Woods, Kevin; Smith, Damian; Adams, Roger

    2016-01-01

    Background: Additional high-quality prospective studies are needed to better define the objective criteria used in relation to return-to-sport decisions after synthetic (ligament advanced reinforcement system [LARS]) and autograft (hamstring tendon [2ST/2GR]) anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction in active populations. Purpose: To prospectively investigate and describe the recovery of objective clinical outcomes after autograft (2ST/2GR) and synthetic (LARS) ACL reconstructions, as well as to investigate the relationship between these clinimetric test outcomes and return-to-sport activity (Tegner activity scale [TAS] score) at 12 and 24 months postoperatively. Study Design: Case series; Level of evidence, 4. Methods: A total of 64 patients who underwent ACL reconstruction (32 LARS, 32 2ST/2GR autograft) and 32 healthy reference participants were assessed for joint laxity (KT-1000 arthrometer), clinical outcome (2000 International Knee Documentation Committee [IKDC] knee examination), and activity (TAS score) preoperatively and at 12, 16, 20, and 24 weeks and 12 and 24 months postoperatively. Results: There was no significant correlation observed between clinical results using the 2000 IKDC knee examination and TAS score at 24 months (r s = 0.188, P = .137), nor were results for side-to-side difference (r s = 0.030, P = .814) or absolute KT-1000 arthrometer laxity of the surgical leg at 24 months postoperatively (r s = 0.076, P = .553) correlated with return-to-sport activity. Nonetheless, return-to-sport rates within the surgical cohort were 81% at 12 months and 83% at 24 months, respectively. No statistically significant differences were observed between physiological laxity of the uninjured knee within the surgical group compared with healthy knees within the reference group (P = .522). Conclusion: The results indicate that although relatively high levels of return-to-sport outcomes were achieved at 24 months compared with those previously reported in

  15. An Ecological Study of Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction, Part 2

    PubMed Central

    McGrath, Timothy M.; Waddington, Gordon; Scarvell, Jennie M.; Ball, Nick; Creer, Rob; Woods, Kevin; Smith, Damian; Adams, Roger

    2017-01-01

    Background: Additional high-quality prospective studies are needed to better define the objective criteria used in relation to return-to-sport decisions after anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction in active populations. Purpose: To investigate prospectively the relationship between functional performance test results at 24 weeks postoperative and return-to-sport activity (Tegner activity score) at 12 and 24 months, respectively, after synthetic (ligament advanced reinforcement system [LARS]) and autograft (doubled semitendinosus/gracilis [2ST/2GR]) ACL reconstructions. Study Design: Case series; Level of evidence, 4. Methods: A total of 64 patients who underwent ACL reconstruction (32 LARS, 32 2ST/2GR autograft; mean age, 27.9 years; body mass index [BMI], 24.9 kg/m2) were assessed preoperatively and at staged intervals postoperatively up to 24 weeks for isokinetic testing of quadriceps and hamstring average power per repetition at 60 deg/s and 180 deg/s, a battery of hop tests, peak vertical ground-reaction force (vGRF), and time to peak vGRF (in seconds) during a step- and jump-down task onto a force platform and peak speed (m/s) using a global positioning system (GPS unit) during a running task. A cohort of 32 healthy matched participants (mean age, 26.31 years; BMI, 25.7 kg/m2) were also tested to act as reference. Pearson correlation was calculated to assess correlation of each performance measure at 24 weeks postoperative with activity outcomes (Tegner score) at 12 and 24 months. Results: The strongest correlation between physical performance tests and return-to-sport outcomes was observed with peak speed during running. Large correlations were also observed for hamstring isokinetic power and hop test for distance. Moderate correlations were observed for timed hop, peak vGRF during a jump-down task, and quadriceps isokinetic power. No statistical correlations were observed for time to peak vGRF during a step-down and jump-down task as well as peak v

  16. Multidimensional approaches for studying plant defence against insects: from ecology to omics and synthetic biology.

    PubMed

    Barah, Pankaj; Bones, Atle M

    2015-02-01

    The biggest challenge for modern biology is to integrate multidisciplinary approaches towards understanding the organizational and functional complexity of biological systems at different hierarchies, starting from the subcellular molecular mechanisms (microscopic) to the functional interactions of ecological communities (macroscopic). The plant-insect interaction is a good model for this purpose with the availability of an enormous amount of information at the molecular and the ecosystem levels. Changing global climatic conditions are abruptly resetting plant-insect interactions. Integration of discretely located heterogeneous information from the ecosystem to genes and pathways will be an advantage to understand the complexity of plant-insect interactions. This review will present the recent developments in omics-based high-throughput experimental approaches, with particular emphasis on studying plant defence responses against insect attack. The review highlights the importance of using integrative systems approaches to study plant-insect interactions from the macroscopic to the microscopic level. We analyse the current efforts in generating, integrating and modelling multiomics data to understand plant-insect interaction at a systems level. As a future prospect, we highlight the growing interest in utilizing the synthetic biology platform for engineering insect-resistant plants.

  17. Automated experimentation in ecological networks

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background In ecological networks, natural communities are studied from a complex systems perspective by representing interactions among species within them in the form of a graph, which is in turn analysed using mathematical tools. Topological features encountered in complex networks have been proved to provide the systems they represent with interesting attributes such as robustness and stability, which in ecological systems translates into the ability of communities to resist perturbations of different kinds. A focus of research in community ecology is on understanding the mechanisms by which these complex networks of interactions among species in a community arise. We employ an agent-based approach to model ecological processes operating at the species' interaction level for the study of the emergence of organisation in ecological networks. Results We have designed protocols of interaction among agents in a multi-agent system based on ecological processes occurring at the interaction level between species in plant-animal mutualistic communities. Interaction models for agents coordination thus engineered facilitate the emergence of network features such as those found in ecological networks of interacting species, in our artificial societies of agents. Conclusions Agent based models developed in this way facilitate the automation of the design an execution of simulation experiments that allow for the exploration of diverse behavioural mechanisms believed to be responsible for community organisation in ecological communities. This automated way of conducting experiments empowers the study of ecological networks by exploiting the expressive power of interaction models specification in agent systems. PMID:21554669

  18. Ecological risk assessment guidance for preparation of remedial investigation/feasibility study work plans

    SciTech Connect

    Pentecost, E.D.; Vinikour, W.S.

    1993-08-01

    This guidance document (1) provides instructions on preparing the components of an ecological work plan to complement the overall site remedial assessment investigation/feasibility study (RI/FS) work plan and (2) directs the user on how to implement ecological tasks identified in the plan. Under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA), as amended by the Superfired Amendments and Reauthorization Act of 1986 (SARA), an RI/FS work plan win have to be developed as part of the site-remediation scoping the process. Specific guidance on the RI/FS process and the preparation of work plans has been developed by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA 1988a). This document provides guidance to US Department of Energy (DOE) staff and contractor personnel for incorporation of ecological information into environmental remediation planning and decision making at CERCLA sites. An overview analysis of early ecological risk assessment methods (i.e., in the 1980s) at Superfund sites was conducted by the EPA (1989a). That review provided a perspective of attention given to ecological issues in some of the first RI/FS studies. By itself, that reference is of somewhat limited value; it does, however, establish a basis for comparison of past practices in ecological risk with current, more refined methods.

  19. Health Risks to Ecological Workers on Contaminated Sites - the Department of Energy as a Case Study

    PubMed Central

    Burger, Joanna; Gochfeld, Michael

    2016-01-01

    Background At most contaminated sites the risk to workers focuses on those ‘hazardous waste workers’ directly exposed to chemicals or radionuclides, and to the elaborate approaches implemented to protecting their health and safety. Ecological workers generally are not considered. Objectives To explore the risks to the health and safety of ecological workers on sites with potential chemical and radiological exposures before, during or after remediation of contamination. To use the U.S. Department of Energy as a case study, and to develop concepts that apply generally to sites contaminated with hazardous or nuclear wastes, Methods Develop categories of ecological workers, describe their usual jobs, and provide information on the kinds of risks they face. Ecological activities include continued surveillance and monitoring work on any sites with residual contamination, subject to institutional controls and engineered barriers following closure as well as the restoration. Results The categories of ecological workers and their tasks include 1) Ecological characterization, mapping and monitoring, 2) biodiversity studies, 2) Contaminant fate and transport, 3) On-going industrial activities 4) Remediation activities (environmental management), 5) Environmental restoration, 6) Post-cleanup surveillance and monitoring, and 7) Post-closure future site activities. There are a set of functional activities that can occur with different frequencies and intensities, including visual inspection, collecting biological samples, collecting media physical samples, collecting biological debris, restoration planting, and maintaining ecosystems. Conclusions Ecological workers face different exposures and risks than other environmental cleanup workers. Many of their tasks mimic shift work with long hours leading to fatigue, and they are exposed to biological as well as chemical/radiological hazards. DOE and other entities need to examine the risks to ecological workers on site with an

  20. Ecological risk caused by land use change in the coastal zone: a case study in the Yellow River Delta High-Efficiency Ecological Economic Zone

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Di, X. H.; Wang, Y. D.; Hou, X. Y.

    2014-03-01

    China's coastal zone plays an important role in ecological services production and social-economic development; however, extensive and intensive land resource utilization and land use change have lead to high ecological risk in this area during last decade. Regional ecological risk assessment can provide fundamental knowledge and scientific basis for better understanding of the relationship between regional landscape ecosystem and human activities or climate changes, facilitating the optimization strategy of land use structure and improving the ecological risk prevention capability. In this paper, the Yellow River Delta High-Efficiency Ecological Economic Zone is selected as the study site, which is undergoing a new round of coastal zone exploitation and has endured substantial land use change in the past decade. Land use maps of 2000, 2005 and 2010 were generated based on Landsat images by visual interpretation method, and the ecological risk index was then calculated. The index was 0.3314, 0.3461 and 0.3176 in 2000, 2005 and 2010 respectively, which showed a positive transition of regional ecological risk in 2005.

  1. [System construction of early warning for ecological security at cultural and natural heritage mixed sites and its application: a case study of Wuyishan Scenery District].

    PubMed

    You, Wei-Bin; He, Dong-Jin; Qin, De-Hua; Ji, Zhi-Rong; Wu, Li-Yun; Yu, Jian-An; Chen, Bing-Rong; Tan, Yong

    2014-05-01

    This paper proposed a new concept of ecological security for protection by a comprehensive analysis of the contents and standards of world heritage sites. A frame concept model named "Pressure-State-Control" for early warning of ecological security at world heritage mixed sites was constructed and evaluation indicators of this frame were also selected. Wuyishan Scenery District was chosen for a case study, which has been severely disturbed by natural and artificial factors. Based on the frame model of "Pressure-State-Control" and by employing extension analysis, the matter-element model was established to assess the ecological security status of this cultural and natural world heritage mixed site. The results showed that the accuracy of ecological security early warning reached 84%. Early warning rank was I level (no alert status) in 1997 and 2009, but that in 2009 had a higher possibility to convert into II level. Likewise, the early-warning indices of sensitive ranks were different between 1997 and 2009. Population density, population growth rate, area index for tea garden, cultivated land owned per capita, level of drought, and investment for ecological and environmental construction were the main limiting factors to hinder the development of ecological security from 2009 to future. In general, the status of Wuyishan Scenery District ecological security was relatively good and considered as no alert level, while risk conditions also existed in terms of a few early-warning indicators. We still need to pay more attention to serious alert indicators and adopt effective prevention and control measures to maintain a good ecological security status of this heritage site.

  2. Ecological studies of polyploidy in the 100 years following its discovery

    PubMed Central

    Ramsey, Justin; Ramsey, Tara S.

    2014-01-01

    Polyploidy is a mutation with profound phenotypic consequences and thus hypothesized to have transformative effects in plant ecology. This is most often considered in the context of geographical and environmental distributions—as achieved from divergence of physiological and life-history traits—but may also include species interactions and biological invasion. This paper presents a historical overview of hypotheses and empirical data regarding the ecology of polyploids. Early researchers of polyploidy (1910s–1930s) were geneticists by training but nonetheless savvy to its phenotypic effects, and speculated on the importance of genome duplication to adaptation and crop improvement. Cytogenetic studies in the 1930s–1950s indicated that polyploids are larger (sturdier foliage, thicker stems and taller stature) than diploids while cytogeographic surveys suggested that polyploids and diploids have allopatric or parapatric distributions. Although autopolyploidy was initially regarded as common, influential writings by North American botanists in the 1940s and 1950s argued for the principle role of allopolyploidy; according to this view, genome duplication was significant for providing a broader canvas for hybridization rather than for its phenotypic effects per se. The emphasis on allopolyploidy had a chilling effect on nascent ecological work, in part due to taxonomic challenges posed by interspecific hybridization. Nonetheless, biosystematic efforts over the next few decades (1950s–1970s) laid the foundation for ecological research by documenting cytotype distributions and identifying phenotypic correlates of polyploidy. Rigorous investigation of polyploid ecology was achieved in the 1980s and 1990s by population biologists who leveraged flow cytometry for comparative work in autopolyploid complexes. These efforts revealed multi-faceted ecological and phenotypic differences, some of which may be direct consequences of genome duplication. Several classical

  3. Ecological studies on the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) on the Savannah River Plant

    SciTech Connect

    Seigel, R.A.; Brandt, L.A.; Knight, J.L.; Novak, S.S.

    1986-06-01

    The American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) is the largest vertebrate of the Savannah River Plant (SRP), reaching a maximum length of 3.7 meters (12 feet) and weighing up to 175 kg (385 pounds). Currently, populations in coastal South Carolina are considered Threatened, whereas populations in inland areas (such as the SRP) are still Endangered. Because of their legal status and economic and ecological importance, it is important to determine the environmental impacts of SRP operations on the local alligator population. The major objectives under the Endangered Species Program of the Comprehensive Cooling Water Study (CCWS) were as follows: (1) document and compare the present status and distribution of alligators on the SRP to previous surveys, in order to determine long-term changes in population abundance; (2) establish baseline population and ecological parameters of the Steel Creek population so that the ecological effects of L-Reactor operations can be determined, and (3) conduct ecological research on the immediate impacts of thermal effluents on American alligators. Gladden et al., (1985) summarized data on previous population surveys, temporal changes in the Par Pond population, preliminary results of the Steel Creek surveys and Savannah River Ecology Laboratory (SREL) research on the effects of thermal effluents. This report summarizes the current status of the SRP population, presents data on the abundance, movement patterns and activity cycles of the Steel Creek population, and presents additional data on the effect of cooling water releases on alligator ecology and behavior.

  4. The effect of outdoor air pollution on mortality risk: an ecological study from Santiago, Chile.

    PubMed

    Salinas, M; Vega, J

    1995-01-01

    The aim of this ecological study was to investigate the effect of outdoor air pollution on the mortality risk of metropolitan inhabitants in Santiago de Chile. Cause-specific deaths by the day for the years 1988-1991 in Santiago de Chile were extracted from mortality data tapes of the National Center for Statistics. Deaths from accidents were excluded. Total and some specific respiratory diseases deaths were compared calculating the risk of death by municipality and month of the year using age-adjusted standardized mortality ratios (SMRs) controlling for socioeconomic level. Daily counts of deaths were regressed using a Poisson model on the total and fine suspended particles, SO2, CO and ozone on the preceding day, controlling for temperature and humidity. A clear pattern in the geographical distribution of risk of death, both for general mortality and specific respiratory causes (pneumonia, COPD and asthma) was found using SMR, with higher values in the most polluted areas regardless of socioeconomic and living conditions. A highly significant positive association was found between total mortality and both fine suspended particles and CO level. The association remained significant for those days with fine suspended particles levels below 150 micrograms/dl suggesting a no-threshold effect for the total number of deaths. These results are in agreement with previously reported associations, and they add to the body of evidence showing that particulate pollution is associated with increases daily mortality.

  5. Influence of ecological factors and of land use on mercury levels in fish in the Tapajós River basin, Amazon.

    PubMed

    Sampaio da Silva, D; Lucotte, M; Paquet, S; Davidson, R

    2009-05-01

    Mercury (Hg) contamination of riparian communities and of environmental compartments of the Amazon can be directly related to the occupation of the territory. The objective of this study was to identify the characteristics of aquatic environments that are associated with high levels of Hg in ichthyofauna. Our research aimed at determining the influence of variables related to fish ecology, types of aquatic environment, fishing activities by local riparian populations, and watershed use on the levels of contamination of ichthyofauna. Six sites were sampled during two distinct periods of the hydrological cycle: at the beginning of descending waters and during low waters. We focused on ten dominant fish species representing four trophic levels: Curimata inornata, Geophagus proximus, Schizodon vittatum, Leporinus fasciatus, Anostomoides laticeps, Hemiodus unimaculatus, Caenotropus labyrinthicus, Hoplias malabaricus, Plagioscion squamosissimus, Acestrorhynchus falcirostris. The study sites, which included lotic and lentic habitats, are exploited year-round by local riparian communities. Spatial variations in Hg contamination in ichthyofauna were determined by factorial analysis of variance taking into account fish diets, seasons, and sampling sites. Multiple regressions were used to check the influence of ecological and anthropogenic variables and variables related to watershed uses, on Hg levels in key species representing the four trophic groups. Each variable was checked independently. Next, multiple regressions were used to verify the concomitant influence of selected variables. Independently of the study site and the phase of the hydrologic cycle, fish Hg contamination followed the trend piscivores>omnivores>herbivores>detritivores. In all the aquatic study sites, Hg levels measured in predatory species were often higher than the 500 ng/g fresh weight threshold. Mean Hg levels in key species were significantly higher during descending waters in lotic environments

  6. Metagenome-based analysis: a promising direction for plankton ecological studies.

    PubMed

    Yan, QingYun; Yu, YuHe

    2011-01-01

    The plankton community plays an especially important role in the functioning of aquatic ecosystems and also in biogeochemical cycles. Since the beginning of marine research expeditions in the 1870 s, an enormous number of planktonic organisms have been described and studied. Plankton investigation has become one of the most important areas of aquatic ecological study, as well as a crucial component of aquatic environmental evaluation. Nonetheless, traditional investigations have mainly focused on morphospecies composition, abundances and dynamics, which primarily depend on morphological identification and counting under microscopes. However, for many species/groups, with few readily observable characteristics, morphological identification and counting have historically been a difficult task. Over the past decades, microbiologists have endeavored to apply and extend molecular techniques to address questions in microbial ecology. These culture-independent studies have generated new insights into microbial ecology. One such strategy, metagenome-based analysis, has also proved to be a powerful tool for plankton research. This mini-review presents a brief history of plankton research using morphological and metagenome-based approaches and the potential applications and further directions of metagenomic analyses in plankton ecological studies are discussed. The use of metagenome-based approaches for plankton ecological study in aquatic ecosystems is encouraged.

  7. Assessment of the U. S. outer continental shelf environmental studies program. 2. Ecology. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1992-01-01

    In 1986, the Minerals Management Service (MMS) requested that the National Research Council (NRC) evaluate the adequacy and applicability of studies conducted in the Environmental Studies Program (ESP), review the general state of knowledge in the appropriate disciplines, and recommend future studies. Under the auspices of the NRC Board on Environmental Studies and Toxicology, the Committee to Review the Outer Continental Shelf Environmental Studies Program was formed to conduct the assignment. Three panels-dealing with ecology, physical oceanography, and socioeconomics--were established to review specific aspects of the assessment. The Ecology Panel investigated the main questions of ecological relevance to OCS oil and gas activities and ecological aspects of the ESP. The panel was divided into three working groups: on marine birds, mammals, turtles, and endangered species; on benthic processes; and on fisheries and ecosystems. The panel conducted workshops on each of those topics, focused on the progress of the ESP in assessing the environmental impacts of OCS oil and gas activities, evaluated shortcomings of the ESP, and identified future information needs. The report, the second in a series, presents the findings and recommendations of the Ecology Panel.

  8. Social differences in avoidable mortality between small areas of 15 European cities: an ecological study

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Health and inequalities in health among inhabitants of European cities are of major importance for European public health and there is great interest in how different health care systems in Europe perform in the reduction of health inequalities. However, evidence on the spatial distribution of cause-specific mortality across neighbourhoods of European cities is scarce. This study presents maps of avoidable mortality in European cities and analyses differences in avoidable mortality between neighbourhoods with different levels of deprivation. Methods We determined the level of mortality from 14 avoidable causes of death for each neighbourhood of 15 large cities in different European regions. To address the problems associated with Standardised Mortality Ratios for small areas we smooth them using the Bayesian model proposed by Besag, York and Mollié. Ecological regression analysis was used to assess the association between social deprivation and mortality. Results Mortality from avoidable causes of death is higher in deprived neighbourhoods and mortality rate ratios between areas with different levels of deprivation differ between gender and cities. In most cases rate ratios are lower among women. While Eastern and Southern European cities show higher levels of avoidable mortality, the association of mortality with social deprivation tends to be higher in Northern and lower in Southern Europe. Conclusions There are marked differences in the level of avoidable mortality between neighbourhoods of European cities and the level of avoidable mortality is associated with social deprivation. There is no systematic difference in the magnitude of this association between European cities or regions. Spatial patterns of avoidable mortality across small city areas can point to possible local problems and specific strategies to reduce health inequality which is important for the development of urban areas and the well-being of their inhabitants. PMID:24618273

  9. Collective trauma in northern Sri Lanka: a qualitative psychosocial-ecological study

    PubMed Central

    Somasundaram, Daya

    2007-01-01

    Background Complex situations that follow war and natural disasters have a psychosocial impact on not only the individual but also on the family, community and society. Just as the mental health effects on the individual psyche can result in non pathological distress as well as a variety of psychiatric disorders; massive and widespread trauma and loss can impact on family and social processes causing changes at the family, community and societal levels. Method This qualitative, ecological study is a naturalistic, psychosocial ethnography in Northern Sri Lanka, while actively involved in psychosocial and community mental health programmes among the Tamil community. Participatory observation, key informant interviews and focus group discussion with community level relief and rehabilitation workers and government and non-governmental officials were used to gather data. The effects on the community of the chronic, man-made disaster, war, in Northern Sri Lanka were compared with the contexts found before the war and after the tsunami. Results Fundamental changes in the functioning of the family and the community were observed. While the changes after the tsunami were not so prominent, the chronic war situation caused more fundamental social transformations. At the family level, the dynamics of single parent families, lack of trust among members, and changes in significant relationships, and child rearing practices were seen. Communities tended to be more dependent, passive, silent, without leadership, mistrustful, and suspicious. Additional adverse effects included the breakdown in traditional structures, institutions and familiar ways of life, and deterioration in social norms and ethics. A variety of community level interventions were tried. Conclusion Exposure to conflict, war and disaster situations impact on fundamental family and community dynamics resulting in changes at a collective level. Relief, rehabilitation and development programmes to be effective will

  10. Violent relationships at the social-ecological level: A multi-mediation model to predict adolescent victimization by peers, bullying and depression in early and late adolescence

    PubMed Central

    Oriol, Xavier; Miranda, Rafael; Acosta, Hedy C.; Mendoza, Michelle C.; Torres-Vallejos, Javier

    2017-01-01

    Background From the social-ecological perspective, exposure to violence at the different developmental levels is fundamental to explain the dynamics of violence and victimization in educational centers. The following study aims at analyzing how these relationships are produced in the Peruvian context, where structural violence situations exist. Methods A multi-mediation structural model with 21,416 Peruvian adolescents (M = 13.69; SD = 0.71) was conducted to determine the influence of violence in the school environment on violence perceived within school and violence exercised by teachers. In addition, it was also intended to determine whether these violent relationships predict depression through loneliness, and bullying through peer victimization. The existence of differences between early and late adolescence was also verified. Results Results confirm that violence in the school setting has high influence on violence exercised by adolescents and teachers within the school. Teacher violence is the most important predictor of depression through loneliness, and encourages peer victimization and the emergence of aggressive behavior. Exposure to violence exercised by support sources—teachers and classmates—explains more than 90% of the total variance explained in bullying behavior. Differences were found between early and late adolescence models. Conclusion The high prevalence of structural violence in school settings facilitates the bullying/victimization dynamics within school. From a social-ecological perspective, this result suggests the importance of network cooperation at a mesosystem level, with teachers from educational centers playing a crucial role in the prevention of bullying/victimization. PMID:28358905

  11. Adverse Outcome Pathways and Ecological Risk Assessment: Bridging to Population Level Effects

    EPA Science Inventory

    The viability of populations of plants and animals is a key focus for environmental regulation. Population-level responses integrate the cumulative effects of chemical stressors on individuals as those individuals interact with and are affected by their con-specifics, competitor...

  12. Adverse Outcome Pathways and Ecological Risk Assessment: Bridging to Population Level Effects, Journal Article

    EPA Science Inventory

    The viability of populations of plants and animals is a key focus for environmental regulation. Population-level responses integrate the cumulative effects of chemical stressors on individuals as those individuals interact with and are affected by their con-specifics, competitor...

  13. Herbarium-based studies on taxonomy, biogeography and ecology of Psilochilus (Orchidaceae)

    PubMed Central

    Naczk, Aleksandra M.; Jaskuła, Radomir

    2016-01-01

    Background Psilochilus is a poorly studied orchid genus distributed from southern Mexico to south-eastern Brazil. A taxonomic revision of this Neotropical endemic based on morphological data is presented. Material and Methods Over 170 dried herbarium specimens and flowers preserved in liquid of Psilochilus were analyzed. Morphological variation among examined taxa was described based on multivariate analysis. To evaluate the similarity between niches occupied by various Psilochilus species ecological niche modeling (ENM) was applied. Species richness and the distribution patterns of Psilochilus representatives were analyzed based on squares of 5° latitude and longitude while similarities among floras between biogeographical units were measured using the Bray-Curtis index for presence/absence data. Results and Discussion A new species of the P. physurifolius-complex is described based on Central American material. Psilochilus crenatifolius is reduced to the rank of variety as P. macrophyllus var. crenatifolius. A key to 18 accepted Psilochilus species is provided. The illustrations of perianth segments of all recognized taxa are presented. The climatic niches preferred by the particular Psilochilus representatives are well separated based on ecological niche modeling analysis. Their distribution is limited mainly by the isothermality and temperature seasonality. The highest Psilochilus species richness is observed in the North Andean, Panamanian, Brazilian Planalto and Central American biogeographical provinces. A high level of endemism is observed in all those regions as well as Yungas biogeographical province. Most Psilochilus species occur in areas above 800 m of elevation. The populations were most often reported from the tropical rain forest and tropical moist deciduous forest. PMID:27843710

  14. A Methodology to Evaluate Ecological Resources and Risk Using Two Case Studies at the Department of Energy’s Hanford Site

    SciTech Connect

    Burger, Joanna; Gochfeld, Michael; Bunn, Amoret; Downs, Janelle; Jeitner, Christian; Pittfield, Taryn; Salisbury, Jennifer; Kosson, David

    2016-11-30

    An assessment of the potential risks to ecological resources from remediation activities or other perturbations should involve a quantitative evaluation of resources on the remediation site and in the surrounding environment. We developed a risk methodology to rapidly evaluate potential impact on ecological resources for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Hanford Site in southcentral Washington State. We describe the application of the risk evaluation for two case studies to illustrate its applicability. The ecological assessment involves examining previous sources of information for the site, defining different resource levels from 0 to 5. We also developed a risk rating scale from nondiscernable to very high. Field assessment is the critical step to determine resource levels or to determine if current conditions are the same as previously evaluated. We provide a rapid assessment method for current ecological conditions that can be compared to previous site-specific data, or that can be used to assess resource value on other sites where ecological information is not generally available. The method is applicable to other Department of Energy’s sites, where its development may involve a range of state regulators, resource trustees, Tribes and other stakeholders. Achieving consistency across Department of Energy’s sites for valuation of ecological resources on remediation sites will assure Congress and the public that funds and personnel are being deployed appropriately.

  15. Comprehensive Cooling Water Study: Volume 7, Ecology of Par Pond, Savannah River Plant: Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Wilde, E.W.

    1987-10-01

    The Comprehensive Cooling Water Study (CCWS) was initiated in 1983 to evaluate the environmental effects of the intake and release of cooling water on the structure and function of aquatic ecosystems at the Savannah River Plant. The initial report (Gladden et al., 1985) described the results from the first year of the study. This document is the final report and concludes the program. The report comprises eight volumes. The first is a summary of environmental effects. The other seven volumes address water quality, radionuclide and heavy metal transport, wetlands, aquatic ecology, Federally endangered species, ecology of Par Pond, and waterfowl. 222 refs., 31 figs., 67 tabs.

  16. Case Study: Crazy about Cryptids--An Ecological Hunt for Nessie and Other Legendary Creatures

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rowe, Matthew P.

    2015-01-01

    This column provides original articles on innovations in case study teaching, assessment of the method, as well as case studies with teaching notes. This hybrid case has three overarching and interrelated goals. First, it can be used to familiarize students with a range of ecological concepts and terms. Second, it is intended to engage students in…

  17. [Analyzing spatial-temporal dynamics of the ecological niche: a marten (Martes martes) population case study].

    PubMed

    Puzachenko, Iu G; Zheltukhin, A S; Sandlerskiĭ, R B

    2010-01-01

    A potential of discriminant analysis is demonstrated in a case study of the common marten (Martes martes L., 1758) ecological niche within the Central Forest Reserve and its buffer zone. The analysis is aimed at identifying how the probability to encounter a marten's footprint along a walking route depends on the relief and other parameters of the environment discerned by remote sensing. The analyses that were done individually for each of the eleven months from a three-year observation period have revealed the pattern of the species spatial distribution and a measure of its association with the environment to be dependent, to a large extent, on the weather conditions. In general, associations with the environment do increase under unfavorable conditions. The methods are suggested that integrate outcomes of the monthly analyses into a general map of habitat types. The technique presented has wide application opportunities in studying the ecology of populations and solving problems of practical ecology.

  18. Examining Ecological and Ecosystem Level Impacts of Aquatic Invasive Species in Lake Michigan Using An Ecosystem Productivity Model, LM-Eco

    EPA Science Inventory

    Ecological and ecosystem-level impacts of aquatic invasive species in Lake Michigan were examined using the Lake Michigan Ecosystem Model (LM-Eco). The LM-Eco model includes a detailed description of trophic levels and their interactions within the lower food web of Lake Michiga...

  19. Constructing ecologies.

    PubMed

    Cropp, Roger; Norbury, John

    2012-02-07

    We synthesize the generic properties of ecologically realistic multi-trophic level models and define criteria for ecological realism. We define an "ecospace" in which all ecologically realistic dynamics are confined, and construct "resource rays" that define the resources available to each species at every point in the ecospace. Resource rays for a species are lines from a vertex of maximum resource to the opposite boundary where no resources are available. The growth functions of all biota normally decrease along their resource rays, and change sign from positive to negative. This property prescribes that each species must have a zero isosurface within the ecospace. We illustrate our conditions on a highly cited three trophic level model from population dynamics, showing how to extend this system biologically consistently to a closed ecological system. Our synthesis extends the concept of carrying capacity of population models to explicitly include exhaustion of limiting resources, and so allows for population biology models to be considered as ecologically closed systems with respect to a key limiting nutrient. This approach unifies many theoretical and applied models in a common biogeochemical framework, facilitates better understanding of the key structures of complex ecologies, and suggests strategies for efficient design of experiments.

  20. PhD-level education in Wageningen: the approach at graduate school Production Ecology and Resource Conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Temme, Arnaud; van de Vijver, Claudius; Jetten, Theo; Suselbeek, Lennart

    2016-04-01

    Wageningen University's PhD programme is organized by Graduate Schools that are defined based on topics. The C.T. de Wit Graduate School for Production Ecology and Resource Conservation (PE&RC) focussed on topics ranging from ecology and soil science to crop modelling. The Graduate School's offering of PhD courses comprises methodological courses, topical courses, skills courses and international on-site courses. All courses are characterized by a high degree of ownership by PhD candidates themselves. In many cases, candidates apply the skills that they learn on datasets from their own studies, during the course. This allows them to get hands-on experience while working towards their own results. The international on-site courses uniquely bring together Wageningen PhD candidates from a wide range of disciplines to jointly discuss and learn with local PhD candidates. Candidates also highly value the extensive attention for candidates' wellbeing during their time in Wageningen, for instance through PhD weekends.

  1. Transition to Postgraduate Study: Postgraduate Ecological Systems and Identity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tobbell, Jane; O'Donnell, Victoria L.

    2013-01-01

    This paper explores and examines the distal and proximal systems which construct social science postgraduate study in the UK and analyses the emergent identities of postgraduate students as they negotiate the multiple and interacting practices in their transition to study. The data represent part of a one-year research project, funded by the…

  2. Assessment of ecological security based on soil and water conservation: a case study from Gansu Province, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Z. J.; Tian, Q.; Song, L. L.

    2016-08-01

    In this study, the analytic hierarchy process (ahp), ecological security index(S) and PSR model were used to evaluate Gansu's ecological security based on the large number of survey data. The results indicated that Gansu's ecological security index increased from 0.31 in 1986 to 0.66 in 2013, which reflected ecological security was in sensitive state (0.7༞S≥⃒0.5). The main reason was that national policy on protecting the ecological environment has played a crucial role, especially the national project of returning farmland to forest and grass carried out in recent years. Moreover, the environmental issues such as the higher PM2.5, sand storms and climate extremes, had significantly improved people's environmental awareness in the study area. The regional difference of ecological security index was significant in Gansu Provinces, and the part of Yangtze river basin was higher than the part of Yellow River basin, whiles the in-land river basin was the lowest value. In a world, Gansu's ecological security had improved in recent years, but there was strong need for paying more attention to policy for ecological environment protection and increasing the propaganda to ensure the Gansu's ecological security in the future. This study will provide a scientific basis for the sustainable development of regional social economy and ecological environment.

  3. The Population Ecology of Technology: An Empirical Study of US Biotechnology Patents from 1976 to 2003.

    PubMed

    van den Oord, Ad; van Witteloostuijn, Arjen

    2017-01-01

    A detailed understanding of technological change as an evolutionary process is currently not well understood. To increase our understanding, we build upon theory from organizational ecology to develop a model of endogenous technological growth and determine to what extent the pattern of technological growth can be attributed to the structural or systemic characteristics of the technology itself. Through an empirical investigation of patent data in the biotechnology industry from 1976 to 2003, we find that a technology's internal (i.e., density and diversity) ecological characteristics have a positive effect on its growth rate. The niche's external characteristics of crowding and status have a negative effect on its growth rate. Hence, applying theory from organizational ecology increases our understanding of technological change as an evolutionary process. We discuss the implications of our findings for the study of technological growth and evolution, and suggest avenues for further research.

  4. The Population Ecology of Technology: An Empirical Study of US Biotechnology Patents from 1976 to 2003

    PubMed Central

    van den Oord, Ad; van Witteloostuijn, Arjen

    2017-01-01

    A detailed understanding of technological change as an evolutionary process is currently not well understood. To increase our understanding, we build upon theory from organizational ecology to develop a model of endogenous technological growth and determine to what extent the pattern of technological growth can be attributed to the structural or systemic characteristics of the technology itself. Through an empirical investigation of patent data in the biotechnology industry from 1976 to 2003, we find that a technology’s internal (i.e., density and diversity) ecological characteristics have a positive effect on its growth rate. The niche’s external characteristics of crowding and status have a negative effect on its growth rate. Hence, applying theory from organizational ecology increases our understanding of technological change as an evolutionary process. We discuss the implications of our findings for the study of technological growth and evolution, and suggest avenues for further research. PMID:28081570

  5. Incorporating ecological risk assessment into remedial investigation/feasibility study work plans

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1994-06-01

    This guidance document (1) provides instructions on preparing the components of an ecological work plan to complement the overall site remedial investigation/feasibility study (RI/FS) work plan and (2) directs the user on how to implement ecological tasks identified in the plan. Under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA), as amended by the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act of 1986 (SARA), and RI/FS work plan will have to be developed as part of the site-remediation scoping process. Specific guidance on the RI/FS process and the preparation of work plans has been developed by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA 1988a). This document provides guidance to US Department of Energy (DOE) staff and contractor personnel for incorporation of ecological information into environmental remediation planning and decision making at CERCLA sites.

  6. [A study on feeding ecology and migration patterns of Dosidicus gigas off Peru using stable isotope analysis].

    PubMed

    Gong, Yi; Chen, Xin-jun; Li, Yun-kai; Han, Meng-jie

    2015-09-01

    As a pelagic cephalopod and one of the main target species of Chinese distant water fishery, jumbo squids (Dosidicus gigas) play a major role in the marine ecosystems of the eastern Pacific. Understanding the feeding ecology and migration patterns of jumbo squids is of importance for better utilizing the resources. The isotopic signatures of gladius, have been proved to be a powerful tool to reveal high resolution and ontogenic variations in individual foraging strategies of squids; which is an archival tissue with no elemental turnover after formation. In this study, the growth equation of gladius proostracum was established based on the age information determined by statolith. Gladius was cut successionally by the growth curve of gladius proostracum, the stable isotopic values of the gladius profiles were determined, and the feeding ecology and migration patterns of jumbo squids during its growth process were investigated. Results showed that the jumbo squids began to migrate after 180 days of postnatal, and their trophic levels tended to decrease throughout the life span. These results demonstrated the feasibility of using continuous sampling hard tissue to study the feeding ecology and habitat transfer of jumbo squids.

  7. Smartphone-based ecological momentary assessment for Chinese patients with depression: An exploratory study in Taiwan.

    PubMed

    Hung, Shan; Li, Min-Shan; Chen, Yen-Lin; Chiang, Jung-Hsien; Chen, Ying-Yeh; Hung, Galen Chin-Lun

    2016-10-01

    Mobile mental health has a potential to improve the recognition and management of Chinese patients with depression. Currently, evidence regarding ecological momentary assessment (EMA) for depressive disorder mostly originates from Western studies. Herein, we examined the validity of smartphone-based EMA for depression in Chinese patients and explored the determinants of use. A smartphone application, iHOPE, was used to perform daily EMA of depression, anxiety, sleep and cognitive performance. Outpatients with depressive disorder were recruited to use iHOPE for 8 weeks. Clinical characteristics and smartphone use patterns were assessed at baseline. We enrolled 59 Chinese patients with depression. In 8 weeks, participants interacted with iHOPE for an average of 10.8 (SD=12.3) days; a trend of decreased frequency of use (p=0.03) was observed. Scores of HAM-D at baseline was associated with, of the first 2 weeks, scores of PHQ-9 (p=0.005), EMA of depression (p=0.003) and anxiety (p<0.001), and poorer sleep quality (p=0.023). Among the demographic, clinical and smartphone-use variables examined, only limited internet package for smartphone (<500M per month) predicted higher use of iHOPE (p=0.04). The present study provides initial evidence for the feasibility of smartphone-based EMA in Chinese patients with depression. Level of engagement needs to be improved before determining its clinical usefulness.

  8. Heterozygote Advantage Probably Maintains Rhesus Factor Blood Group Polymorphism: Ecological Regression Study

    PubMed Central

    Flegr, Jaroslav

    2016-01-01

    Rhesus factor polymorphism has been an evolutionary enigma since its discovery in 1939. Carriers of the rarer allele should be eliminated by selection against Rhesus positive children born to Rhesus negative mothers. Here I used an ecologic regression study to test the hypothesis that Rhesus factor polymorphism is stabilized by heterozygote advantage. The study was performed in 65 countries for which the frequencies of RhD phenotypes and specific disease burden data were available. I performed multiple multivariate covariance analysis with five potential confounding variables: GDP, latitude (distance from the equator), humidity, medical care expenditure per capita and frequencies of smokers. The results showed that the burden associated with many diseases correlated with the frequencies of particular Rhesus genotypes in a country and that the direction of the relation was nearly always the opposite for the frequency of Rhesus negative homozygotes and that of Rhesus positive heterozygotes. On the population level, a Rhesus-negativity-associated burden could be compensated for by the heterozygote advantage, but for Rhesus negative subjects this burden represents a serious problem. PMID:26811928

  9. Undertaking an Ecological Approach to Advance Game-Based Learning: A Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shah, Mamta; Foster, Aroutis

    2014-01-01

    Systematic incorporation of digital games in schools is largely unexplored. This case study explored the ecological conditions necessary for implementing a game-based learning course by examining the interaction between three domains (the innovator, the innovation, and the context). From January-April 2012, one in-service teacher learned and…

  10. Revitalizing Traditional Ecological Knowledge: A Study in an Alpine Rural Community

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ianni, Elena; Geneletti, Davide; Ciolli, Marco

    2015-07-01

    This study aims to contribute to the debate on the value and the role of ecological knowledge in modern conservation strategies, with reference to the results of a case study conducted in the community of Montagne, located within a World Heritage site in the Italian Alps. This community is a paradigmatic example of the multiple transformations experienced by cultural landscapes in Alpine areas under the influence of global change. This study seeks to understand whether ecological knowledge is still in place in the community, and what the relationship is between the knowledge transmission and land use and social changes that have occurred in recent decades. To that end, the community is described by identifying the key variables (social, institutional, and ecological) that have historically shaped the landscape and the future priorities of the residents. Forest expansion, the most significant change in land use in the last 60 years, is analyzed using aerial photos; changes in biodiversity-related knowledge in the community are quantified by analyzing the inter-generational differences in plant species recognition. Results are discussed in the context of the current situation of the Montagne community, and the recommendation is made that policies and actions to promote traditional ecological knowledge protection or recovery in Europe be viewed as an important part of the recovery of community sovereignty and vitality. Lastly, concrete actions that can be implemented in our case study are proposed.

  11. The Cultural Ecology of Scholar-Practitioner Leaders: An Ethnographic Study of Leadership

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jenlink, Patrick M.

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this critical ethnographic study was to examine the nature and meaning of cultural ecology in relation to preparing scholar-practitioner leaders. The ethnography focused on how the discourses and practices within the disciplinary setting of leadership preparation shape the identity of social scholar-practitioner leaders. The…

  12. Ignorance of Hedonic Adaptation to Hemodialysis: A Study Using Ecological Momentary Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Riis, Jason; Loewenstein, George; Baron, Jonathan; Jepson, Christopher; Fagerlin, Angela; Ubel, Peter A.

    2005-01-01

    Healthy people generally underestimate the self-reported well-being of people with disabilities and serious illnesses. The cause of this discrepancy is in dispute, and the present study provides evidence for 2 causes. First, healthy people fail to anticipate hedonic adaptation to poor health. Using an ecological momentary assessment measure of…

  13. Science and Ecological Economics: Integrating of the Study of Humans and the Rest of Nature

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Costanza, Robert

    2009-01-01

    Ecological economics is a transdisciplinary field that seeks to integrate the study of humans and the rest of nature as the basis for the creation of a sustainable and desirable future. It seeks to dissolve the barriers between the traditional disciplines and achieve a true "consilience" of all the sciences and humanities. This consilient,…

  14. STABLE ISOTOPES IN ECOLOGICAL STUDIES: EXPANDING THE SCOPE OF MIXING MODELS

    EPA Science Inventory

    Stable isotopes are increasingly being used as tracers in ecological studies. One common application uses isotopic ratios to quantify the proportional contributions of multiple sources to a mixture. Examples include pollution sources for air or water bodies, food sources for an...

  15. Organisms for Teaching: "Artemia salina": An Easily Cultured Invertebrate Ideally Suited for Ecological Studies.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ward-Booth, Kirsty; Reiss, Michael

    1988-01-01

    This paper includes a general account of the biology of the brine shrimp, instructions on how the organism may be cultured, the results of some experiments on the ecology and population biology of the species, and some suggestions for further studies. (Author/CW)

  16. Daily Emotional Dynamics in Depressed Youth: A Cell Phone Ecological Momentary Assessment Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Silk, Jennifer S.; Forbes, Erika E.; Whalen, Diana J.; Jakubcak, Jennifer L.; Thompson, Wesley K.; Ryan, Neal D.; Axelson, David A.; Birmaher, Boris; Dahl, Ronald E.

    2011-01-01

    This study used a new cell phone ecological momentary assessment approach to investigate daily emotional dynamics in 47 youths with major depressive disorder (MDD) and 32 no-psychopathology controls (CON) (ages 7-17 years). Information about emotional experience in the natural environment was obtained using answer-only cell phones, while MDD…

  17. Research Plan for Study of Biological and Ecological Effects of the Solar Power Satellite Transmission System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Newsom, B. D.

    1978-01-01

    A programmatic research plan for a three year study is presented to generate knowledge on effects of the continuous wave 2.45 GHz microwave power transmission that the Solar Power Satellite might have on biological and ecological elements, within and around the rectenna receiving site.

  18. Algal culture studies related to a Closed Ecological Life Support System (CELSS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Radmer, R. O.; Ollinger, O.; Venables, A.; Fernandez, E.

    1982-01-01

    Studies with algal cultures which relate to closed ecological life support systems (CELSS) are discussed. A description of a constant cell density apparatus for continuous culture of algae is included. Excretion of algal by-products, and nitrogen utilization and excretion are discussed.

  19. Ecological studies on the American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) on the Savannah River Plant. Comprehensive Cooling Water Study: Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Seigel, R.A.; Brandt, L.A.; Knight, J.L.; Novak, S.S.

    1986-06-01

    The American alligator (Alligator mississippiensis) is the largest vertebrate of the Savannah River Plant (SRP), reaching a maximum length of 3.7 meters (12 feet) and weighing up to 175 kg (385 pounds). Currently, populations in coastal South Carolina are considered Threatened, whereas populations in inland areas (such as the SRP) are still Endangered. Because of their legal status and economic and ecological importance, it is important to determine the environmental impacts of SRP operations on the local alligator population. The major objectives under the Endangered Species Program of the Comprehensive Cooling Water Study (CCWS) were as follows: (1) document and compare the present status and distribution of alligators on the SRP to previous surveys, in order to determine long-term changes in population abundance; (2) establish baseline population and ecological parameters of the Steel Creek population so that the ecological effects of L-Reactor operations can be determined, and (3) conduct ecological research on the immediate impacts of thermal effluents on American alligators. Gladden et al., (1985) summarized data on previous population surveys, temporal changes in the Par Pond population, preliminary results of the Steel Creek surveys and Savannah River Ecology Laboratory (SREL) research on the effects of thermal effluents. This report summarizes the current status of the SRP population, presents data on the abundance, movement patterns and activity cycles of the Steel Creek population, and presents additional data on the effect of cooling water releases on alligator ecology and behavior.

  20. An Experimental Ecological Study of a Garden Compost Heap.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Curds, Tracy

    1985-01-01

    A quantitative study of the fauna of a garden compost heap shows it to be similar to that of organisms found in soil and leaf litter. Materials, methods, and results are discussed and extensive tables of fauna lists, wet/dry masses, and statistical analyses are presented. (Author/DH)

  1. Comprehensive Cooling Water Study: Volume 5, Aquatic ecology, Savannah River Plant: Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Specht, W.L.

    1987-10-01

    The Comprehensive Cooling Water Study (CCWS) was initiated in 1983 to evaluate the environmental effects of the intake and release of cooling water on the structure and function of aquatic ecosystems at the Savannah River Plant. The initial report (Gladden et al., 1985) described the results from the first year of the study. This document is the final report and concludes the program. The report comprises eight volumes. The first is a summary of environmental effects. The other seven volumes address water quality, radionuclide and heavy metal transport, wetlands, aquatic ecology, Federally endangered species, ecology of Par Pond, and waterfowl. This report documents the results of the Aquatic Ecology Program of the Comprehensive Cooling Water Study. The purpose of the Aquatic Ecology Program was to determine the environmental impacts of cooling water intake and release on the biological communities of SRP streams and swamps and the Savannah River, and the significance of these impacts on the SRP environment. 171 refs., 132 figs., 165 tabs.

  2. Cognitive ecology.

    PubMed

    Hutchins, Edwin

    2010-10-01

    Cognitive ecology is the study of cognitive phenomena in context. In particular, it points to the web of mutual dependence among the elements of a cognitive ecosystem. At least three fields were taking a deeply ecological approach to cognition 30 years ago: Gibson's ecological psychology, Bateson's ecology of mind, and Soviet cultural-historical activity theory. The ideas developed in those projects have now found a place in modern views of embodied, situated, distributed cognition. As cognitive theory continues to shift from units of analysis defined by inherent properties of the elements to units defined in terms of dynamic patterns of correlation across elements, the study of cognitive ecosystems will become an increasingly important part of cognitive science.

  3. An ecological study of bacteriophages of Vibrio natriegens.

    PubMed

    Zachary, A

    1978-03-01

    Effects of temperature and anaerobic conditions on the replication of two bacteriophages, nt-1 and nt-6, of the estuarine bacterium Vibrio natriegens were studied. Reduction in temperature resulted in longer latent periods and reduced burst sizes for both phages. Replication under anaerobic conditions resulted in longer latent periods; however, phage nt-6 had a reduced burst size, whereas phage nt-1 had an increased burst size, resulting in a rate of phage production nearly equal to that observed under aerobic conditions. Therefore the distribution of the phages in marsh areas could be influenced by temperature and anaerobiosis.

  4. A screening level probabilistic ecological risk assessment of PAHs in sediments of San Francisco Bay

    SciTech Connect

    Febbo, E.J.; Arnold, W.R.; Biddinger, G.R.

    1995-12-31

    As part of the Regional Monitoring Program administered by the San Francisco Estuary Institute (SFEI), sediment samples were collected at 20 stations in San Francisco Bay and analyzed to determine concentrations of 43 PAHs. These data were obtained from SFEI and used to calculate the potential risk to aquatic organisms using probabilistic modeling and Monte Carlo statistical procedures. Sediment chemistry data were used in conjunction with a sediment equilibrium model, a bioconcentration model, biota-sediment accumulation factors, and critical body burden effects concentrations to assess potential risk to bivalves. Bivalves were the chosen receptors because they lack a well-developed enzymatic system for metabolizing PAHs. Thus, they more readily accumulate PAHs and represent a species at greater risk than other taxa, such as fish and crustaceans. PAHs considered in this study span a broad range of octanol-water partition coefficients. Results indicate that risk of non-polar narcotic effects from PAHs was low in the Northern Bay Area, but higher in the South Bay near the more urbanized sections of the drainage basin.

  5. Ecological study of peat landforms in Canada and Alaska

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Glaser, Paul H.

    1989-01-01

    Over 20 percent of the land surface of Canada and Alaska is covered by peatlands, which may be defined as any waterlogged ecosystem with a minimum thickness of 20 cm of organic matter in the soil. Past investigations have demonstrated the value of aerial photographs in identifying the major vegetation types and analyzing the biotic and hydrogeologic processes that control the development of these peatlands. In the present study, LANDSAT TM imagery was used in conjunction with field studies to determine the utility of this satellite sensor for detecting these important processes. Although the vegetation landforms within these major peat basins are visible on aerial photographs, LANDSAT TM imagery provides essential new evidence for their analysis. Spectral data from the LANDSAT TM system provides: (1) synoptic views of the patterns across large portions of these peat basins, indicating important physiographic controls on peatland development, (2) more sensitive detection of the major vegetation types, allowing rapid quantitative estimates to be made of their distribution and aerial extent, (3) discrimination of bog areas with potentially rapid or slow rates of peat accumulation, (4) identification of discharge zones for groundwater, which apparently represents the most important source of alkalinity in these peat basins, and (5) detection of flow patterns in water tracks that appear nearly uniform on standard aerial photographs.

  6. Sweetened Drink and Snacking Cues in Adolescents: A Study Using Ecological Momentary Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Grenard, Jerry L.; Stacy, Alan W.; Shiffman, Saul; Baraldi, Amanda N.; MacKinnon, David P.; Lockhart, Ginger; Kisbu-Sakarya, Yasemin; Boyle, Sarah; Beleva, Yuliyana; Koprowski, Carol; Ames, Susan L.; Reynolds, Kim D.

    2013-01-01

    The objective of this study was to identify physical, social, and intrapersonal cues that were associated with the consumption of sweetened beverages and sweet and salty snacks among adolescents from lower SES neighborhoods. Students were recruited from high schools with a minimum level of 25% free or reduced cost lunches. Using Ecological Momentary Assessment, participants (N=158) were trained to answer brief questionnaires on handheld PDA devices: (a) each time they ate or drank, (b) when prompted randomly, and (c) once each evening. Data were collected over 7 days for each participant. Participants reported their location (e.g., school grounds, home), mood, social environment, activities (e.g., watching TV, texting), cravings, food cues (e.g., saw a snack), and food choices. Results showed that having unhealthy snacks or sweet drinks among adolescents was associated with being at school, being with friends, feeling lonely or bored, craving a drink or snack, and being exposed to food cues. Surprisingly, sweet drink consumption was associated with exercising. Watching TV was associated with consuming sweet snacks but not with salty snacks or sweet drinks. These findings identify important environmental and intrapersonal cues to poor snacking choices that may be applied to interventions designed to disrupt these food-related, cue-behavior linked habits. PMID:23583312

  7. Study on mating ecology and sex ratio of three internally ovipositing fig wasps of Ficus curtipes.

    PubMed

    Zhang, F P; Yang, D R

    2010-04-01

    Studies on mating ecology and sex allocation in fig-parasitizing wasps ovipositing from outside the fig have given valuable insights into known factors that are responsible for the theory of sex ratio. Similarly, internally ovipositing fig-parasitizing wasps and fig-pollinating wasps provide interesting models for comparative analysis. In addition to the fig-pollinating wasp Eupristina sp., we found that Ficus curtipes hosts two species of internally ovipositing fig-parasitizing wasps: D. yangi and Lipothymus sp. Eupristina sp. males showed less aggression. Eupristina sp. has wingless males that mate only within the natal patch, providing excellent examples of full local-mate competition. D. yangi males showed high levels of aggression and lethal combat. D. yangi has winged males but mate mostly within the natal patch. Only a few matings occur after male dispersal. Its sex ratio was lower than the prediction of partial local mate competition theory. Wingless male Lipothymus sp., which mate partly after dispersal, did not present fatal fight. Therefore, the mating behaviour of D. yangi and Lipothymus sp. did not follow predicted patterns, based on wing morph. The mating pattern of D. yangi and Lipothymus sp. should follow the partial local mate competition theory. Furthermore, there was not a significant correlation between the proportion of males and the proportion of fruit parasitized in both winged D. yangi males and wingless Lipothymus sp. males.

  8. Sweetened drink and snacking cues in adolescents: a study using ecological momentary assessment.

    PubMed

    Grenard, Jerry L; Stacy, Alan W; Shiffman, Saul; Baraldi, Amanda N; MacKinnon, David P; Lockhart, Ginger; Kisbu-Sakarya, Yasemin; Boyle, Sarah; Beleva, Yuliyana; Koprowski, Carol; Ames, Susan L; Reynolds, Kim D

    2013-08-01

    The objective of this study was to identify physical, social, and intrapersonal cues that were associated with the consumption of sweetened beverages and sweet and salty snacks among adolescents from lower SES neighborhoods. Students were recruited from high schools with a minimum level of 25% free or reduced cost lunches. Using ecological momentary assessment, participants (N=158) were trained to answer brief questionnaires on handheld PDA devices: (a) each time they ate or drank, (b) when prompted randomly, and (c) once each evening. Data were collected over 7days for each participant. Participants reported their location (e.g., school grounds, home), mood, social environment, activities (e.g., watching TV, texting), cravings, food cues (e.g., saw a snack), and food choices. Results showed that having unhealthy snacks or sweet drinks among adolescents was associated with being at school, being with friends, feeling lonely or bored, craving a drink or snack, and being exposed to food cues. Surprisingly, sweet drink consumption was associated with exercising. Watching TV was associated with consuming sweet snacks but not with salty snacks or sweet drinks. These findings identify important environmental and intrapersonal cues to poor snacking choices that may be applied to interventions designed to disrupt these food-related, cue-behavior linked habits.

  9. Microclimatic variation within sleeve cages used in ecological studies.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Lori A; Rieske, Lynne K

    2014-01-01

    Sleeve cages for enclosing or excluding arthropods are essential components of field studies evaluating trophic interactions. Microclimatic variation in sleeve cages was evaluated to characterize its potential effects on subsequent long-term experiments. Two sleeve cage materials, polyester and nylon, and two cage sizes, 400 and 6000 cm(2), were tested on eastern hemlock, Tsuga canadensis (L.) Carrière. Temperature and relative humidity inside and outside cages, and the cost and durability of the cage materials, were compared. Long-term effects of the sleeve cages were observed by measuring new growth on T. canadensis branches. The ultimate goal was to identify a material that minimizes bag-induced microclimatic variation. Bagged branches whose microclimates mimic those of surrounding unbagged branches should have minimal effects on plant growth and may prove ideal venues for assessing herbivore and predator behavior under natural conditions. No differences were found in temperature or humidity between caging materials. Small cages had higher average temperatures than large cages, especially in the winter, but this difference was confounded by the fact that small cages were positioned higher in trees than large cages. Differences in plant growth were detected. Eastern hemlock branches enclosed within polyester cages produced fewer new growth tips than uncaged controls. Both polyester and nylon cages reduced the length of new shoot growth relative to uncaged branches. In spite of higher costs, nylon cages were superior to polyester with respect to durability and ease of handling.

  10. A comparative analysis reveals weak relationships between ecological factors and beta diversity of stream insect metacommunities at two spatial levels

    PubMed Central

    Heino, Jani; Melo, Adriano S; Bini, Luis Mauricio; Altermatt, Florian; Al-Shami, Salman A; Angeler, David G; Bonada, Núria; Brand, Cecilia; Callisto, Marcos; Cottenie, Karl; Dangles, Olivier; Dudgeon, David; Encalada, Andrea; Göthe, Emma; Grönroos, Mira; Hamada, Neusa; Jacobsen, Dean; Landeiro, Victor L; Ligeiro, Raphael; Martins, Renato T; Miserendino, María Laura; Md Rawi, Che Salmah; Rodrigues, Marciel E; Roque, Fabio de Oliveira; Sandin, Leonard; Schmera, Denes; Sgarbi, Luciano F; Simaika, John P; Siqueira, Tadeu; Thompson, Ross M; Townsend, Colin R

    2015-01-01

    The hypotheses that beta diversity should increase with decreasing latitude and increase with spatial extent of a region have rarely been tested based on a comparative analysis of multiple datasets, and no such study has focused on stream insects. We first assessed how well variability in beta diversity of stream insect metacommunities is predicted by insect group, latitude, spatial extent, altitudinal range, and dataset properties across multiple drainage basins throughout the world. Second, we assessed the relative roles of environmental and spatial factors in driving variation in assemblage composition within each drainage basin. Our analyses were based on a dataset of 95 stream insect metacommunities from 31 drainage basins distributed around the world. We used dissimilarity-based indices to quantify beta diversity for each metacommunity and, subsequently, regressed beta diversity on insect group, latitude, spatial extent, altitudinal range, and dataset properties (e.g., number of sites and percentage of presences). Within each metacommunity, we used a combination of spatial eigenfunction analyses and partial redundancy analysis to partition variation in assemblage structure into environmental, shared, spatial, and unexplained fractions. We found that dataset properties were more important predictors of beta diversity than ecological and geographical factors across multiple drainage basins. In the within-basin analyses, environmental and spatial variables were generally poor predictors of variation in assemblage composition. Our results revealed deviation from general biodiversity patterns because beta diversity did not show the expected decreasing trend with latitude. Our results also call for reconsideration of just how predictable stream assemblages are along ecological gradients, with implications for environmental assessment and conservation decisions. Our findings may also be applicable to other dynamic systems where predictability is low. PMID:25859329

  11. Compliance to a Cell Phone-Based Ecological Momentary Assessment Study: The Effect of Time and Personality Characteristics

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Courvoisier, Delphine S.; Eid, Michael; Lischetzke, Tanja

    2012-01-01

    Ecological momentary assessment (EMA) is a method that is now widely used to study behavior and mood in the settings in which they naturally occur. It maximizes ecological validity and avoids the limitations of retrospective self-reports. Compliance patterns across time have not been studied. Consistent compliance patterns could lead to data not…

  12. Comprehensive Evaluation of Urban Sprawl on Ecological Environment Using Multi-Source Data: a Case Study of Beijing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Hao; Ning, Xiaogang; Zhu, Weiwei; Li, Fei

    2016-06-01

    With urban population growing and urban sprawling, urban ecological environment problems appear. Study on spatiotemporal characteristics of urban sprawl and its impact on ecological environment is useful for ecological civilization construction. Although a lot of work has been conducted on urban sprawl and its impact on ecological environment, resolution of images to extract urban boundary was relatively coarse and most studies only focused on certain indicators of ecological environment, rather than comprehensive evaluation of urban ecological environmental impact. In this study, high-resolution remote sensing images of Beijing from aerial photography in 2002 and 2013 respectively are employed to extract urban boundary with manual interpretation. Fractional Vegetation Coverage (FVC), Water Density (WD), Impervious Surfaces Coverage (ISC), Net Primary Production (NPP), and Land Surface Temperature (LST) are adopted to represent ecological environment. The ecological environment indicators are measured with some general algorithms by combining Landsat images, GIS data and metrological data of 243 day, 2001 and 244 day, 2013. In order to evaluate the impact of urban sprawl on ecological environment, pseudo changes due to metrological variation and other noise in this time period are removed after images calibration. The impact of urban sprawl on ecological environment is evaluated at different scales of urban extent, Beijing ring road and watershed. Results show that Beijing had been undergoing a rapid urbanization from 2002 to 2013, with urban area increase from 600 square kilometres to 987 square kilometres. All ecological environment indicators except LST became terrible in urban sprawl region, with carbon reduction of approximate 40508 tons. The Beiyun River watershed of Beijing degraded seriously since ISC increased to 0.59. Gratifyingly, ecological environment indicators including NDVI, NPP, and LST inside of 4th Ring Road became well.

  13. Level and Contamination Assessment of Soil along an Expressway in an Ecologically Valuable Area in Central Poland

    PubMed Central

    Radziemska, Maja; Fronczyk, Joanna

    2015-01-01

    Express roads are a potential source of heavy metal contamination in the surrounding environment. The Warsaw Expressway (E30) is one of the busiest roads in the capital of Poland and cuts through the ecologically valuable area (Mazowiecki Natural Landscape Park). Soil samples were collected at distances of 0.5, 4.5 and 25 m from the expressway. The concentrations of cadmium (Cd), copper (Cu), nickel (Ni), lead (Pb), and zinc (Zn) were determined in the soils by the flame atomic absorption spectrometry method (FAAS). Soils located in the direct proximity of the analyzed stretch of road were found to have the highest values of pH and electrical conductivity (EC), which decreased along with an increase in the distance from the expressway. The contents of Cd, Cu and Zn were found to be higher than Polish national averages, whereas the average values of Ni and Pb were not exceeded. The pollution level was estimated based on the geo-accumulation index (Igeo), and the pollution index (PI). The results of Igeo and PI indexes revealed the following orders: Cu < Zn < Ni < Cd < Pb and Cu < Ni < Cd < Zn < Pb, and comparison with geochemical background values showed higher concentration of zinc, lead and cadmium. PMID:26512684

  14. Level and Contamination Assessment of Soil along an Expressway in an Ecologically Valuable Area in Central Poland.

    PubMed

    Radziemska, Maja; Fronczyk, Joanna

    2015-10-23

    Express roads are a potential source of heavy metal contamination in the surrounding environment. The Warsaw Expressway (E30) is one of the busiest roads in the capital of Poland and cuts through the ecologically valuable area (Mazowiecki Natural Landscape Park). Soil samples were collected at distances of 0.5, 4.5 and 25 m from the expressway. The concentrations of cadmium (Cd), copper (Cu), nickel (Ni), lead (Pb), and zinc (Zn) were determined in the soils by the flame atomic absorption spectrometry method (FAAS). Soils located in the direct proximity of the analyzed stretch of road were found to have the highest values of pH and electrical conductivity (EC), which decreased along with an increase in the distance from the expressway. The contents of Cd, Cu and Zn were found to be higher than Polish national averages, whereas the average values of Ni and Pb were not exceeded. The pollution level was estimated based on the geo-accumulation index (Igeo), and the pollution index (PI). The results of Igeo and PI indexes revealed the following orders: Cu < Zn < Ni < Cd < Pb and Cu < Ni < Cd < Zn < Pb, and comparison with geochemical background values showed higher concentration of zinc, lead and cadmium.

  15. Applications of C and N stable isotopes to ecological and environmental studies in seagrass ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Lepoint, Gilles; Dauby, Patrick; Gobert, Sylvie

    2004-12-01

    Stable isotopes of carbon and nitrogen are increasingly used in marine ecosystems, for ecological and environmental studies. Here, we examine some applications of stable isotopes as ecological integrators or tracers in seagrass ecosystem studies. We focus on both the use of natural isotope abundance as food web integrators or environmental tracers and on the use of stable isotopes as experimental tools. As ecosystem integrators, stable isotopes have helped to elucidate the general structure of trophic webs in temperate, Mediterranean and tropical seagrass ecosystems. As environmental tracers, stable isotopes have proven their utility in sewage impact measuring and mapping. However, to make such environmental studies more comprehensible, future works on understanding of basic reasons for variations of N and C stable isotopes in seagrasses should be encouraged. At least, as experimental tracers, stable isotopes allow the study of many aspects of N and C cycles at the scale of a plant or at the scale of the seagrass ecosystem.

  16. Increasing Public Access to Scientific Research through Stakeholder Involvement: Ecological Effects of Sea Level Rise in the Northern Gulf of Mexico

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hagen, S. C.; Stephens, S. H.; DeLorme, D. E.; Ruple, D.; Graham, L.

    2013-12-01

    Sea level rise (SLR) has the potential to have a myriad of deleterious effects on coastal ecology and human infrastructure. Stakeholders, including managers of coastal resources, must be aware of potential consequences of SLR and adjust their plans accordingly to protect and preserve the resources under their care. Members of the public, particularly those who live or work in coastal areas, should also be informed about the results of scientific research on the effects of SLR. However, research results are frequently published in venues or formats to which resource managers and the broader public have limited access. It is imperative for scientists to move beyond traditional publication venues in order to more effectively disseminate the results of their research (Dennison, W. 2007, Estu. Coast. Shelf Sci. 77, 185). One potentially effective way to advance public access to research is to incorporate stakeholder involvement into the research project process in order to target study objectives and tailor communication products toward stakeholder needs (Lemos, M. & Morehouse, B. 2005, Glob. Env. Chg. 15, 57). However, it is important to manage communication and clarify participant expectations during this type of research (Gawith, M. et al. 2009, Glob. Env. Chg. 19, 113). This presentation describes the process being undertaken by an ongoing 5-year multi-disciplinary NOAA-funded project, Ecological Effects of Sea Level Rise in the Northern Gulf of Mexico (EESLR-NGOM), to improve accessibility and utility of scientific research results through stakeholder engagement. The EESLR-NGOM project is assessing the ecological risks from SLR along the Mississippi, Alabama and Florida Panhandle coasts, coastal habitats, and floodplains. It has incorporated stakeholder involvement throughout the research process so as to better target and tailor the emerging research products to meet resource managers' needs, as well as to facilitate eventual public dissemination of results. An

  17. The inter-relationship among economic activities, environmental degradation, material consumption and population health in low-income countries: a longitudinal ecological study

    PubMed Central

    Chuang, Ying-Chih; Huang, Ya-Li; Hu, Ching-Yao; Chen, Ssm-Ching; Tseng, Kuo-Chien

    2015-01-01

    Objectives The theory of ecological unequal exchange explains how trade and various forms of economic activity create the problem of environmental degradation, and lead to the deterioration of population health. Based on this theory, our study examined the inter-relationship among economic characteristics, ecological footprints, CO2 emissions, infant mortality rates and under-5 mortality rates in low-income countries. Design A longitudinal ecological study design. Setting Sixty-six low-income countries from 1980 to 2010 were included in the analyses. Data for each country represented an average of 23 years (N=1497). Data sources Data were from the World Development Indicators, UN Commodity Trade Statistics Database, Global Footprint Network and Polity IV Project. Analyses Linear mixed models with a spatial power covariance structure and a correlation that decreased over time were constructed to accommodate the repeated measures. Statistical analyses were conducted separately by sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America and other regions. Results After controlling for country-level sociodemographic characteristics, debt and manufacturing, economic activities were positively associated with infant mortality rates and under-5 mortality rates in sub-Saharan Africa. By contrast, export intensity and foreign investment were beneficial for reducing infant and under-5 mortality rates in Latin America and other regions. Although the ecological footprints and CO2 emissions did not mediate the relationship between economic characteristics and health outcomes, export intensity increased CO2 emissions, but reduced the ecological footprints in sub-Saharan Africa. By contrast, in Asia, the Middle East and North Africa, although export intensity was positively associated with the ecological footprints and also CO2 emissions, the percentage of exports to high-income countries was negatively associated with the ecological footprints. Conclusions This study suggested that environmental

  18. A pilot study of Aboriginal health promotion from an ecological perspective

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background For health promotion to be effective in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities, interventions (and their evaluation) need to work within a complex social environment and respect Indigenous knowledge, culture and social systems. At present, there is a lack of culturally appropriate evaluation methods available to practitioners that are capable of capturing this complexity. As an initial response to this problem, we used two non-invasive methods to evaluate a community-directed health promotion program, which aimed to improve nutrition and physical activity for members of the Aboriginal community of the Goulburn-Murray region of northern Victoria, Australia. The study addressed two main questions. First, for members of an Aboriginal sporting club, what changes were made to the nutrition environment in which they meet and how is this related to national guidelines for minimising the risk of chronic disease? Second, to what degree was the overall health promotion program aligned with an ecological model of health promotion that addresses physical, social and policy environments as well as individual knowledge and behaviour? Methods Rather than monitoring individual outcomes, evaluation methods reported on here assessed change in the nutrition environment (sports club food supply) as a facilitator of dietary change and the 'ecological' nature of the overall program (that is, its complexity with respect to numbers of targets, settings and strategies). Results There were favourable changes towards the provision of a food supply consistent with Australian guidelines at the sports club. The ecological analysis indicated that the design and implementation of the program were consistent with an ecological model of health promotion. Conclusions The evaluation was useful for assessing the impact of the program on the nutrition environment and for understanding the ecological nature of program activities. PMID:21961906

  19. Site study plan for ecology, Deaf Smith County Site, Texas: Environmental Field Program: Preliminary Draft

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1987-06-01

    The Ecology Site Study Plan describes a field program consisting of studies which include surveys for endangered, threatened, and candidate species; vegetation characterization, including mapping and cover typing, plant succession, wetlands description, and preexisting stresses; and wildlife community characterization, including availability and quality of habitats and descriptions of mammal, bird, reptile, amphibian, and invertebrate populations. The plan for each study describes the need for the study, study design, data management and use, schedule and personnel requirements, and quality assurance. These studies will provide data needed to satisfy requirements contained in, or derived from, the Salt Repository Project Requirements Document (SRP-RD). 83 refs., 3 tabs.

  20. Rapid Industrial Development, Competition, and Relative Economic Status: A Study in Human Ecology. Working Paper RID 73.10.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Summers, Gene F.; Clemente, Frank

    The document has 3 goals (1) to examine the distribution of economic benefits of industrial development as reflected by the concept of competition in human ecology; (2) to provide an empirical test of the ecological model, and (3) to relate the findings to public policy. Two Illinois study areas were identified. First, as an experimental region,…

  1. Using Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) to Assess Situation-Level Predictors of Alcohol Use and Alcohol-Related Consequences.

    PubMed

    Wray, Tyler B; Merrill, Jennifer E; Monti, Peter M

    2014-01-01

    Ecological momentary assessment (EMA) has afforded several important advances in the field of alcohol research, including testing prominent models of alcohol abuse etiology in "high resolution." Using high-tech methods for signaling and/or assessment, such as mobile electronic diaries, personal data assistants, and smartphones, EMA approaches potentially can improve understanding of precipitants of drinking, drinking patterns, and consequences. For example, EMA has been used to study complex drinking patterns and dynamic predictors of drinking in near-real time. Compared with other methods, EMA can better sample and capture changes in these phenomena that occur in relatively short time frames. EMA also has several potential applications in studying the consequences of alcohol use, including physical, interpersonal, behavioral, and legal problems. However, even with all these potential capabilities, EMA research in the alcohol field still is associated with some limitations, including the potential for measurement reactivity and problems with acceptability and compliance. Despite these limitations, electronically based EMA methods are versatile and are capable of capturing data relevant to a variety of momentary influences on both alcohol use and consequences. Therefore, it will be exciting to fully realize the potential of future applications of EMA technologies, particularly if the associated costs can be reduced.

  2. Ecological versus case-control studies for testing a linear-no threshold dose-response relationship.

    PubMed

    Cohen, B L

    1990-09-01

    The two basic problems with ecological studies are (A) individuals studied are not necessarily the individuals who are at risk, and (B) they are very vulnerable to confounding factors. It is shown that where the study is designed to test a linear-no threshold dose-response theory, (A) does not apply. Where the ecological study deals with the average dose and response in a large number of US counties, the available data and computer capability for reducing effects of confounders are so powerful that (B) may be no more important for the ecological than for a case-control study. The migration problem is treated and found to be relatively unimportant.

  3. Are Oligotypes Meaningful Ecological and Phylogenetic Units? A Case Study of Microcystis in Freshwater Lakes.

    PubMed

    Berry, Michelle A; White, Jeffrey D; Davis, Timothy W; Jain, Sunit; Johengen, Thomas H; Dick, Gregory J; Sarnelle, Orlando; Denef, Vincent J

    2017-01-01

    Oligotyping is a computational method used to increase the resolution of marker gene microbiome studies. Although oligotyping can distinguish highly similar sequence variants, the resulting units are not necessarily phylogenetically and ecologically informative due to limitations of the selected marker gene. In this perspective, we examine how oligotyping data is interpreted in recent literature, and we illustrate some of the method's constraints with a case study of the harmful bloom-forming cyanobacterium Microcystis. We identified three Microcystis oligotypes from a western Lake Erie bacterial community 16S rRNA gene (V4 region) survey that had previously clustered into one OTU. We found the same three oligotypes and two additional sequence variants in 46 Microcystis cultures isolated from Michigan inland lakes spanning a trophic gradient. In Lake Erie, shifts in Microcystis oligotypes corresponded to spatial nutrient gradients and temporal transitions in bloom toxicity. In the cultures, Microcystis oligotypes showed preferential distributions for different trophic states, but genomic data revealed that the oligotypes identified in Lake Erie did not correspond to toxin gene presence. Thus, oligotypes could not be used for inferring toxic ecotypes. Most strikingly, Microcystis oligotypes were not monophyletic. Our study supports the utility of oligotyping for distinguishing sequence types along certain ecological features, while it stresses that 16S rRNA gene sequence types may not reflect ecologically or phylogenetically cohesive populations. Therefore, we recommend that studies employing oligotyping or related tools consider these caveats during data interpretation.

  4. Managers' summary - ecological studies of the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range, 1992-1997

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Singer, F.J.; Schoenecker, K.A.

    2000-01-01

    Ecological Studies of the Pryor Mountain Wild Horse Range, 1992-1997 provides a synthesis of key findings of landscape-scale, interdisciplinary studies of the effects of wild horses and native ungulates on a rugged, mountain ecosystem. This is perhaps the most comprehensive study of a wild horse herd conducted. This was a complex study and one involving a truly interagency approach. Six agencies either provided input to research priority setting, funding, or both. The agencies included the Bureau of Land Management, National Park Service, U.S. Geological Survey, Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks, Wyoming Game and Fish Department, and U.S. Forest Service. The major research direction and effort came from the U.S. Geological Survey and Natural Resources Ecology Lab, Colorado State University with Montana State University and the University of Kentucky also participating. Ungulate monitoring was conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey, Biological Resources Division, Bureau of Land Management, Billings Field Office and the Montana Fish and Wildlife Parks, with funding by Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area. Many other individuals and groups were involved and deserve credit. The report printing was made possible with funds from the Bureau of Land Management, Wild Horse and Burro Program, Washington Office. This report was prepared by the Information Management Project, Midcontinent Ecological Science Center, U.S. Geological Survey.

  5. Are Oligotypes Meaningful Ecological and Phylogenetic Units? A Case Study of Microcystis in Freshwater Lakes

    PubMed Central

    Berry, Michelle A.; White, Jeffrey D.; Davis, Timothy W.; Jain, Sunit; Johengen, Thomas H.; Dick, Gregory J.; Sarnelle, Orlando; Denef, Vincent J.

    2017-01-01

    Oligotyping is a computational method used to increase the resolution of marker gene microbiome studies. Although oligotyping can distinguish highly similar sequence variants, the resulting units are not necessarily phylogenetically and ecologically informative due to limitations of the selected marker gene. In this perspective, we examine how oligotyping data is interpreted in recent literature, and we illustrate some of the method’s constraints with a case study of the harmful bloom-forming cyanobacterium Microcystis. We identified three Microcystis oligotypes from a western Lake Erie bacterial community 16S rRNA gene (V4 region) survey that had previously clustered into one OTU. We found the same three oligotypes and two additional sequence variants in 46 Microcystis cultures isolated from Michigan inland lakes spanning a trophic gradient. In Lake Erie, shifts in Microcystis oligotypes corresponded to spatial nutrient gradients and temporal transitions in bloom toxicity. In the cultures, Microcystis oligotypes showed preferential distributions for different trophic states, but genomic data revealed that the oligotypes identified in Lake Erie did not correspond to toxin gene presence. Thus, oligotypes could not be used for inferring toxic ecotypes. Most strikingly, Microcystis oligotypes were not monophyletic. Our study supports the utility of oligotyping for distinguishing sequence types along certain ecological features, while it stresses that 16S rRNA gene sequence types may not reflect ecologically or phylogenetically cohesive populations. Therefore, we recommend that studies employing oligotyping or related tools consider these caveats during data interpretation. PMID:28337183

  6. Administrative Job Level Study and Factoring System.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Portland Community Coll., OR.

    The administrative job classification system and generic job descriptions presented in this report were developed at Portland Community College (PCC) as management tools. After introductory material outlining the objectives of and criteria used in the administrative job-level study, and offering information on the administrative job factoring…

  7. Metabolomics and Natural-Products Strategies to Study Chemical Ecology in Nematodes

    PubMed Central

    Edison, Arthur S.; Clendinen, Chaevien S.; Ajredini, Ramadan; Beecher, Chris; Ponce, Francesca V.; Stupp, Gregory S.

    2015-01-01

    This review provides an overview of two complementary approaches to identify biologically active compounds for studies in chemical ecology. The first is activity-guided fractionation and the second is metabolomics, particularly focusing on a new liquid chromatography–mass spectrometry-based method called isotopic ratio outlier analysis. To illustrate examples using these approaches, we review recent experiments using Caenorhabditis elegans and related free-living nematodes. PMID:26141866

  8. Metabolomics and Natural-Products Strategies to Study Chemical Ecology in Nematodes.

    PubMed

    Edison, Arthur S; Clendinen, Chaevien S; Ajredini, Ramadan; Beecher, Chris; Ponce, Francesca V; Stupp, Gregory S

    2015-09-01

    This review provides an overview of two complementary approaches to identify biologically active compounds for studies in chemical ecology. The first is activity-guided fractionation and the second is metabolomics, particularly focusing on a new liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry-based method called isotopic ratio outlier analysis. To illustrate examples using these approaches, we review recent experiments using Caenorhabditis elegans and related free-living nematodes.

  9. A socio-ecological model for unintentional injuries in minorities: a case study of Arab Israeli children.

    PubMed

    Baron-Epel, Orna; Ivancovsky, Michal

    2015-01-01

    Minority children have often been reported to be at high risk of injury. The higher levels of reported unintentional injuries among Arab children compared to Jewish children in Israel are mainly due to pedestrian traffic crashes, falls and burns. Arab children aged 1-4 years have a higher relative risk of injury compared to Jews. We suggest a socio-ecological model to explain these differences in risk based on individual, interpersonal, community and societal ecological levels of society. Each level is divided into social and physical environments and behaviour. Two main factors may contribute to the high rates of injury among Arab children: the quality of the physical environment in which the children live and play and the levels of child supervision. Socio-economic status may contribute to these differences at all ecological levels of society. This approach could be useful for researchers and practitioners to analyse similar issues in other communities and help develop appropriate interventions.

  10. Studying the neurobiology of human social interaction: Making the case for ecological validity.

    PubMed

    Hogenelst, Koen; Schoevers, Robert A; aan het Rot, Marije

    2015-01-01

    With this commentary we make the case for an increased focus on the ecological validity of the measures used to assess aspects of human social functioning. Impairments in social functioning are seen in many types of psychopathology, negatively affecting the lives of psychiatric patients and those around them. Yet the neurobiology underlying abnormal social interaction remains unclear. As an example of human social neuroscience research with relevance to biological psychiatry and clinical psychopharmacology, this commentary discusses published experimental studies involving manipulation of the human brain serotonin system that included assessments of social behavior. To date, these studies have mostly been laboratory-based and included computer tasks, observations by others, or single-administration self-report measures. Most laboratory measures used so far inform about the role of serotonin in aspects of social interaction, but the relevance for real-life interaction is often unclear. Few studies have used naturalistic assessments in real life. We suggest several laboratory methods with high ecological validity as well as ecological momentary assessment, which involves intensive repeated measures in naturalistic settings. In sum, this commentary intends to stimulate experimental research on the neurobiology of human social interaction as it occurs in real life.

  11. Case study of building of conservation coalitions to conserve ecological interactions.

    PubMed

    Chen, Gao; Luo, Shihong; Mei, Nianshu; Shen, Dingfang; Sun, Weibang

    2015-12-01

    We engaged experts in various fields of study (pollination ecology, chemical ecology, and ethnobotany), invited community participation, and provided environmental education in an effort to conserve an endangered birthwort (Aristolochia delavayi) and a vulnerable pipevine swallowtail (Byasa daemonius). Scientists studied the uptake and sequestration of the secondary metabolites aristolochic acids from A. delavayi leaves by different stages of pipevine swallowtail as a defense mechanism; low fruit set of the myophilous A. delavayi due to pollinator limitation; and the emission of chemical signals that attract parasitic wasps by the prepupae of B. daemonius. The results of these studies were part of an education program delivered by personnel of non-governmental organizations. The program was devised to deliver information to the public about the health risks of consuming A. delavayi individuals (aristolochic-acid-associated cancers) and to establish a bridge between the public and scientific research. Following delivery of the program, the behavior of residents changed considerably. Community residents were involved in management activities, including participation in a program to promote understanding of ecological interactions between A. delavayi and B. daemonius; designing an in situ conservation site; monitoring A. delavayi and B. daemonius individuals; and promoting the natural fruit set of A. delavayi by scattering animal excrement to attract fly pollinators. The integration of scientific information and community participation appears to have resulted in an increase in abundance of threatened A. delavayi and B. daemonius populations. We believe the involvement of local people in conservation is necessary for successful species conservation.

  12. A Multicountry Ecological Study of Cancer Incidence Rates in 2008 with Respect to Various Risk-Modifying Factors

    PubMed Central

    Grant, William B.

    2013-01-01

    Observational and ecological studies are generally used to determine the presence of effect of cancer risk-modifying factors. Researchers generally agree that environmental factors such as smoking, alcohol consumption, poor diet, lack of physical activity, and low serum 25-hdyroxyvitamin D levels are important cancer risk factors. This ecological study used age-adjusted incidence rates for 21 cancers for 157 countries (87 with high-quality data) in 2008 with respect to dietary supply and other factors, including per capita gross domestic product, life expectancy, lung cancer incidence rate (an index for smoking), and latitude (an index for solar ultraviolet-B doses). The factors found to correlate strongly with multiple types of cancer were lung cancer (direct correlation with 12 types of cancer), energy derived from animal products (direct correlation with 12 types of cancer, inverse with two), latitude (direct correlation with six types, inverse correlation with three), and per capita gross national product (five types). Life expectancy and sweeteners directly correlated with three cancers, animal fat with two, and alcohol with one. Consumption of animal products correlated with cancer incidence with a lag time of 15–25 years. Types of cancer which correlated strongly with animal product consumption, tended to correlate weakly with latitude; this occurred for 11 cancers for the entire set of countries. Regression results were somewhat different for the 87 high-quality country data set and the 157-country set. Single-country ecological studies have inversely correlated nearly all of these cancers with solar ultraviolet-B doses. These results can provide guidance for prevention of cancer. PMID:24379012

  13. An ecological study of Bithynia snails, the first intermediate host of Opisthorchis viverrini in northeast Thailand.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yi-Chen; Ho, Richard Cheng Yong; Feng, Chen-Chieh; Namsanor, Jutamas; Sithithaworn, Paiboon

    2015-01-01

    Infection with the food-borne trematodiasis, liver fluke Opisthorchis viverrini, is a major public health concern in Southeast Asia. While epidemiology and parasitic incidence in humans are well studied, ecological information on the O. viverrini intermediate hosts remains limited. This study aimed to investigate the factors affecting the distribution and abundance of the first intermediate host, Bithynia siamensis goniomphalos snails. Water quality and snails were sampled in 31 sites in Muang District, Khon Kaen Province, Thailand from June 2012 to January 2013 to characterize the B.s. goniomphalos snail habitats. Species relative abundance and Shannon's diversity and evenness indices were employed to describe snail compositions and diversities across different habitat types. Statistical analyses were conducted to examine the extent to which the water quality variables and species interactions account for the relative abundance of B.s. goniomphalos snails. The results showed that the freshwater habitats of ponds, streams and rice paddies possessed significantly different abiotic water qualities, with water temperature and pH showing distinct statistical differences (P<0.05). Different habitats had different snail diversity and species evenness, with high B.s. goniomphalos snail abundance at rice paddy habitats. The differences in snail abundance might be due to the distinct sets of abiotic water qualities associated with each habitat types. The relative abundance of B.s. goniomphalos snails was found to be negatively correlated with that of Filopaludina martensi martensi snails (r=-0.46, P<0.05), underscoring the possible influence of species interaction on B.s. goniomphalos snail population. Field work observations revealed that rice planting seasons and irrigation could regulate snail population dynamics at rice paddy habitats. This study provides new ecological insights into the factors affecting Bithynia snail distribution and abundance. It bridges the

  14. Identifying ecological barriers in marine environment: The case study of Dasyatis marianae.

    PubMed

    Costa, Tiego L A; Pennino, M Grazia; Mendes, Liana F

    2017-04-01

    Ecological barriers are important determinants of the evolution and distributions marine organisms, and a challenge for evolutionary ecologists seeking to understand population structure in the sea. Dasyatis marianae is an endemic Brazilian species that indicates certain restrictions on its distribution probably due to marine barriers. In this study, Bayesian hierarchical spatial models, jointly with environmental and occurrence species data, are used to identify, which elements could generate these barriers on Dasyatis marianae distribution. Results show that salinity and temperature are the most important drivers that play an essential role to limit the distribution of this species. Indeed, low salinity values restrict Dasyatis marianae distribution in the north of the Brazilian coast, while in the south are colder temperatures. These results highlight the need to better define the distribution of marine species, especially for the ones affected by ecological barriers that are more sensitive to environmental changes.

  15. The importance of ecological studies in the control of tsetse flies*

    PubMed Central

    Glover, P. E.

    1967-01-01

    The author reviews recent ecological research on tsetse flies in East Africa and Northern Nigeria, particularly in connexion with the flies' sensory reactions, and stresses the importance of an accurate knowledge of their daytime and night-time resting-sites and of identifying the sources of their blood meals in order to elucidate the reservoirs of trypanosomiasis. The epidemiology of the disease is considered in the light of studies of trypanosome infections in host and fly. The control of tsetse flies must be based on the practical application of ecological knowledge by methods involving either a direct attack upon the fly (such as trapping or the use of insecticides) or an indirect attack (such as bush clearing or game destruction to eliminate the fly's habitat or food supply); these methods are dealt with in some detail. The author concludes with a discussion of modern trends in research, and a number of lines of research are suggested. PMID:4874781

  16. Using molecular biology to study mycorrhizal fungal community ecology: Limits and perspectives.

    PubMed

    Chagnon, Pierre-Luc; Bainard, Luke D

    2015-01-01

    Molecular tools have progressively replaced morphological approaches to characterize microbial communities in nature. Arbuscular mycorrhizal (AM) fungi are no exception to this rule. Yet, one challenge posed by these symbionts is that they colonize simultaneously both plant roots and soil, which complicates their detection and quantification. In most studies conducted to date, AM fungal communities have been characterized from roots only, soil only or spores only. Here, we discuss the pitfalls associated to drawing ecological inferences using such datasets. We also conclude by arguing that molecular biology will contribute most to advance knowledge in AM fungal ecology if it is integrated into broader perspectives taking into account the natural history of these organisms. This calls for a better merging of molecular and morphological approaches, and the establishment of intensive, long-term research programs.

  17. Deconstructing the relationships between phylogenetic diversity and ecology: a case study on ecosystem functioning.

    PubMed

    Davies, T Jonathan; Urban, Mark C; Rayfield, Bronwyn; Cadotte, Marc W; Peres-Neto, Pedro R

    2016-09-01

    Recent studies have supported a link between phylogenetic diversity and various ecological properties including ecosystem function. However, such studies typically assume that phylogenetic branches of equivalent length are more or less interchangeable. Here we suggest that there is a need to consider not only branch lengths but also their placement on the phylogeny. We demonstrate how two common indices of network centrality can be used to describe the evolutionary distinctiveness of network elements (nodes and branches) on a phylogeny. If phylogenetic diversity enhances ecosystem function via complementarity and the representation of functional diversity, we would predict a correlation between evolutionary distinctiveness of network elements and their contribution to ecosystem process. In contrast, if one or a few evolutionary innovations play key roles in ecosystem function, the relationship between evolutionary distinctiveness and functional contribution may be weak or absent. We illustrate how network elements associated with high functional contribution can be identified from regressions between phylogenetic diversity and productivity using a well-known empirical data set on plant productivity from the Cedar Creek Long-Term Ecological Research. We find no association between evolutionary distinctiveness and ecosystem functioning, but we are able to identify phylogenetic elements associated with species of known high functional contribution within the Fabaceae. Our perspective provides a useful guide in the search for ecological traits linking diversity and ecosystem function, and suggests a more nuanced consideration of phylogenetic diversity is required in the conservation and biodiversity-ecosystem-function literature.

  18. Factors associated with maternal mortality in Sub-Saharan Africa: an ecological study

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background Maternal health is one of the major worldwide health challenges. Currently, the unacceptably high levels of maternal mortality are a common subject in global health and development discussions. Although some countries have made remarkable progress, half of the maternal deaths in the world still take place in Sub-Saharan Africa where little or no progress has been made. There is no single simple, straightforward intervention that will significantly decrease maternal mortality alone; however, there is a consensus on the importance of a strong health system, skilled delivery attendants, and women's rights for maternal health. Our objective was to describe and determine different factors associated with the maternal mortality ratio in Sub-Saharan countries. Methods An ecological multi-group study compared variables between many countries in Sub-Saharan Africa using data collected between 1997 and 2006. The dependent variable was the maternal mortality ratio, and Health care system-related, educational and economic indicators were the independent variables. Information sources included the WHO, World Bank, UNICEF and UNDP. Results Maternal mortality ratio values in Sub-Saharan Africa were demonstrated to be high and vary enormously among countries. A relationship between the maternal mortality ratio and some educational, sanitary and economic factors was observed. There was an inverse and significant correlation of the maternal mortality ratio with prenatal care coverage, births assisted by skilled health personnel, access to an improved water source, adult literacy rate, primary female enrolment rate, education index, the Gross National Income per capita and the per-capita government expenditure on health. Conclusions Education and an effective and efficient health system, especially during pregnancy and delivery, are strongly related to maternal death. Also, macro-economic factors are related and could be influencing the others. PMID:20003411

  19. Comparing Selections of Environmental Variables for Ecological Studies: A Focus on Terrain Attributes

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Craig J.; Devillers, Rodolphe; Lucieer, Vanessa L.; Edinger, Evan N.

    2016-01-01

    Selecting appropriate environmental variables is a key step in ecology. Terrain attributes (e.g. slope, rugosity) are routinely used as abiotic surrogates of species distribution and to produce habitat maps that can be used in decision-making for conservation or management. Selecting appropriate terrain attributes for ecological studies may be a challenging process that can lead users to select a subjective, potentially sub-optimal combination of attributes for their applications. The objective of this paper is to assess the impacts of subjectively selecting terrain attributes for ecological applications by comparing the performance of different combinations of terrain attributes in the production of habitat maps and species distribution models. Seven different selections of terrain attributes, alone or in combination with other environmental variables, were used to map benthic habitats of German Bank (off Nova Scotia, Canada). 29 maps of potential habitats based on unsupervised classifications of biophysical characteristics of German Bank were produced, and 29 species distribution models of sea scallops were generated using MaxEnt. The performances of the 58 maps were quantified and compared to evaluate the effectiveness of the various combinations of environmental variables. One of the combinations of terrain attributes–recommended in a related study and that includes a measure of relative position, slope, two measures of orientation, topographic mean and a measure of rugosity–yielded better results than the other selections for both methodologies, confirming that they together best describe terrain properties. Important differences in performance (up to 47% in accuracy measurement) and spatial outputs (up to 58% in spatial distribution of habitats) highlighted the importance of carefully selecting variables for ecological applications. This paper demonstrates that making a subjective choice of variables may reduce map accuracy and produce maps that do not

  20. Pike Esox lucius as an emerging model organism for studies in ecology and evolutionary biology: a review.

    PubMed

    Forsman, A; Tibblin, P; Berggren, H; Nordahl, O; Koch-Schmidt, P; Larsson, P

    2015-08-01

    The pike Esox lucius is a large, long-lived, iteroparous, top- predator fish species with a circumpolar distribution that occupies a broad range of aquatic environments. This study reports on a literature search and demonstrates that the publication rate of E. lucius research increases both in absolute terms and relative to total scientific output, and that the focus of investigation has changed over time from being dominated by studies on physiology and disease to being gradually replaced by studies on ecology and evolution. Esox lucius can be exploited as a model in future research for identifying causes and consequences of phenotypic and genetic variation at the levels of individuals, populations and species as well as for investigating community processes.

  1. Population-Level Metrics of Trophic Structure Based on Stable Isotopes and Their Application to Invasion Ecology

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Michelle C.; Donohue, Ian; Jackson, Andrew L.; Britton, J. Robert; Harper, David M.; Grey, Jonathan

    2012-01-01

    Biological invasions are a significant driver of human-induced global change and many ecosystems sustain sympatric invaders. Interactions occurring among these invaders have important implications for ecosystem structure and functioning, yet they are poorly understood. Here we apply newly developed metrics derived from stable isotope data to provide quantitative measures of trophic diversity within populations or species. We then use these to test the hypothesis that sympatric invaders belonging to the same functional feeding group occupy a smaller isotopic niche than their allopatric counterparts. Two introduced, globally important, benthic omnivores, Louisiana swamp crayfish (Procambarus clarkii) and carp (Cyprinus carpio), are sympatric in Lake Naivasha, Kenya. We applied our metrics to an 8-year data set encompassing the establishment of carp in the lake. We found a strong asymmetric interaction between the two invasive populations, as indicated by inverse correlations between carp abundance and measures of crayfish trophic diversity. Lack of isotopic niche overlap between carp and crayfish in the majority of years indicated a predominantly indirect interaction. We suggest that carp-induced habitat alteration reduced the diversity of crayfish prey, resulting in a reduction in the dietary niche of crayfish. Stable isotopes provide an integrated signal of diet over space and time, offering an appropriate scale for the study of population niches, but few isotope studies have retained the often insightful information revealed by variability among individuals in isotope values. Our population metrics incorporate such variation, are robust to the vagaries of sample size and are a useful additional tool to reveal subtle dietary interactions among species. Although we have demonstrated their applicability specifically using a detailed temporal dataset of species invasion in a lake, they have a wide array of potential ecological applications. PMID:22363724

  2. Design of an ecological momentary assessment study of exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields and non-specific physical symptoms

    PubMed Central

    Bogers, Rik P; Bolte, John F B; Houtveen, Jan H; Lebret, Erik; van Strien, Rob T; Schipper, C Maarten A; Alkadhimi, Mehdi; Baliatsas, Christos; van Kamp, Irene

    2013-01-01

    Introduction Idiopathic Environmental Intolerance (IEI) attributed to electromagnetic fields (EMF) refers to self-reported sensitivity mainly characterised by the attribution of non-specific physical symptoms to low-level EMF exposure emitted from sources such as mobile phones. Scientific studies have not provided evidence for the existence of IEI-EMF, but these studies did not resemble the real-life situation or suffered from poor exposure characterisation and biased recall of health symptoms. To improve existing methods for the study of IEI-EMF, an Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) study is designed. Methods and analysis The study is an EMA study in which respondents carry personal exposure metres (exposimeters) that measure radiofrequency (RF) EMF, with frequent assessment of health symptoms and perceived EMF exposure through electronic diary registration during five consecutive days. Participants will be a selection from an epidemiological study who report to be sensitive to RF EMF. The exposimeters measure electric field strength in 12 frequency bands. Diary questions include the occurrence and severity of 10 non-specific physical symptoms, mood states and perceived exposure to (sources of) EMF. The relationship of actual and perceived EMF exposure and mood with non-specific physical symptoms will be analysed using multilevel regression analysis with time-shift models. Discussion The study has several advantages over previous studies, including assessment of personal EMF exposure and non-specific physical symptoms by an ecological method with a minimised chance of recall bias. The within-person design reduces confounding by time-stable factors (eg, personal characteristics). In the conduct of the study and the analysis and interpretation of its outcomes, some methodological issues including a high participant burden, reactivity, compliance to the study protocol and the potential of chance findings due to multiple statistical testing will be accounted for

  3. Eliciting and Representing High-Level Knowledge Requirements to Discover Ecological Knowledge in Flower-Visiting Data

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Observations of individual organisms (data) can be combined with expert ecological knowledge of species, especially causal knowledge, to model and extract from flower–visiting data useful information about behavioral interactions between insect and plant organisms, such as nectar foraging and pollen transfer. We describe and evaluate a method to elicit and represent such expert causal knowledge of behavioral ecology, and discuss the potential for wider application of this method to the design of knowledge-based systems for knowledge discovery in biodiversity and ecosystem informatics. PMID:27851814

  4. Constructing Ecological Networks Based on Habitat Quality Assessment: A Case Study of Changzhou, China

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Yu; Ma, Lei; Liu, Jiaxun; Zhuang, Zhuzhou; Huang, Qiuhao; Li, Manchun

    2017-01-01

    Fragmentation and reduced continuity of habitat patches threaten the environment and biodiversity. Recently, ecological networks are increasingly attracting the attention of researchers as they provide fundamental frameworks for environmental protection. This study suggests a set of procedures to construct an ecological network. First, we proposed a method to construct a landscape resistance surface based on the assessment of habitat quality. Second, to analyze the effect of the resistance surface on corridor simulations, we used three methods to construct resistance surfaces: (1) the method proposed in this paper, (2) the entropy coefficient method, and (3) the expert scoring method. Then, we integrated habitat patches and resistance surfaces to identify potential corridors using graph theory. These procedures were tested in Changzhou, China. Comparing the outputs of using different resistance surfaces demonstrated that: (1) different landscape resistance surfaces contribute to how corridors are identified, but only slightly affect the assessment of the importance of habitat patches and potential corridors; (2) the resistance surface, which is constructed based on habitat quality, is more applicable to corridor simulations; and (3) the assessment of the importance of habitat patches is fundamental for ecological network optimization in the conservation of critical habitat patches and corridors. PMID:28393879

  5. Bridging the theoretical divide in Holocene landscape studies: social and ecological approaches to ancient Oaxacan landscapes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Joyce, Arthur A.; Goman, Michelle

    2012-11-01

    In this article we discuss two theoretical approaches to landscape studies in archaeology: the ecological and social/symbolic. We suggest that an integrated approach can provide a more effective means through which archaeologists and earth scientists can model the complex interplay between people and the environment. Our perspective views peoples' engagements with the landscape as simultaneously ecological and social, material and symbolic. To illustrate this synthetic approach we discuss our research from the highland and lowland regions of the Mexican state of Oaxaca using archaeological, ethnographic, ethnohistorical, paleoecological, and geomorphological data. In highland Oaxaca we examine the ways in which political and religious principles were embedded in the landscape as well as the social, symbolic, and material dimensions of anthropogenic landscape change during the Formative period. For the coastal lowlands, we discuss the social and ecological implications of the transition to sedentism and the effects of anthropogenic landscape change during the Formative period. We also examine the interplay between politics and land use during the Classic and Postclassic periods.

  6. Thermal ecology of montane Atelopus (Anura: Bufonidae): A study of intrageneric diversity.

    PubMed

    Rueda Solano, Luis Alberto; Navas, Carlos A; Carvajalino-Fernández, Juan Manuel; Amézquita, Adolfo

    2016-05-01

    Harlequin frogs (Bufonidae: Atelopus) are among the most threatened frog genus in the world and reach very high elevations in the tropical Andes and the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta (SNSM). Learning about their thermal ecology is essential to infer sensitivity to environmental changes, particularly climate warming. We report on the activity temperature and thermoregulatory behavior of three high-elevation species of harlequin frogs, Atelopus nahumae, Atelopus laetissimus and Atelopus carrikeri. The first two mentioned live in streams in Andean rain forests, whereas A. carrikeri inhabits paramo streams in the SNSM. We studied the thermal ecology of these species in tree localities differing in altitude, and focused on activity body, operative, substrate and air temperature. A main trend was lower body temperature as elevation increased, so that differences among species were largely explained by differences in substrate temperature. However, this temperature variation was much lower in forest species than paramo species. The Atelopus species included in this work proved to be thermoconformers, a trend that not extended to all congenerics at high elevation. This diversity in thermal ecology poses important questions when discussing the impact of climate warming for high-elevation harlequin frogs. For example, forest species show narrow thermal ranges and, if highly specialized, may be more susceptible to temperature change. Paramo species such as A. carrikeri, in contrast, may be more resilient to temperature change.

  7. Ecological epigenetics.

    PubMed

    Kilvitis, Holly J; Alvarez, Mariano; Foust, Christy M; Schrey, Aaron W; Robertson, Marta; Richards, Christina L

    2014-01-01

    Biologists have assumed that heritable variation due to DNA sequence differences (i.e., genetic variation) allows populations of organisms to be both robust and adaptable to extreme environmental conditions. Natural selection acts on the variation among different genotypes and ultimately changes the genetic composition of the population. While there is compelling evidence about the importance of genetic polymorphisms, evidence is accumulating that epigenetic mechanisms (e.g., chromatin modifications, DNA methylation) can affect ecologically important traits, even in the absence of genetic variation. In this chapter, we review this evidence and discuss the consequences of epigenetic variation in natural populations. We begin by defining the term epigenetics, providing a brief overview of various epigenetic mechanisms, and noting the potential importance of epigenetics in the study of ecology. We continue with a review of the ecological epigenetics literature to demonstrate what is currently known about the amount and distribution of epigenetic variation in natural populations. Then, we consider the various ecological contexts in which epigenetics has proven particularly insightful and discuss the potential evolutionary consequences of epigenetic variation. Finally, we conclude with suggestions for future directions of ecological epigenetics research.

  8. Ancient DNA from marine mammals: studying long-lived species over ecological and evolutionary timescales.

    PubMed

    Foote, Andrew D; Hofreiter, Michael; Morin, Phillip A

    2012-01-20

    Marine mammals have long generation times and broad, difficult to sample distributions, which makes inferring evolutionary and demographic changes using field studies of extant populations challenging. However, molecular analyses from sub-fossil or historical materials of marine mammals such as bone, tooth, baleen, skin, fur, whiskers and scrimshaw using ancient DNA (aDNA) approaches provide an opportunity for investigating such changes over evolutionary and ecological timescales. Here, we review the application of aDNA techniques to the study of marine mammals. Most of the studies have focused on detecting changes in genetic diversity following periods of exploitation and environmental change. To date, these studies have shown that even small sample sizes can provide useful information on historical genetic diversity. Ancient DNA has also been used in investigations of changes in distribution and range of marine mammal species; we review these studies and discuss the limitations of such 'presence only' studies. Combining aDNA data with stable isotopes can provide further insights into changes in ecology and we review past studies and suggest future potential applications. We also discuss studies reconstructing inter- and intra-specific phylogenies from aDNA sequences and discuss how aDNA sequences could be used to estimate mutation rates. Finally, we highlight some of the problems of aDNA studies on marine mammals, such as obtaining sufficient sample sizes and calibrating for the marine reservoir effect when radiocarbon-dating such wide-ranging species.

  9. Ecological effects on streams from forest fertilization; literature review and conceptual framework for future study in the western Cascades

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Anderson, C.W.

    2002-03-19

    Studies of the responses of stream biota to fertilization have been rare and have targeted either immediate, toxicity-based responses or used methods insensitive to ongoing ecological processes. This report reviews water-quality studies following forest fertilizations, emphasizing Cascade streams in the Pacific Northwest and documented biological responses in those streams. A conceptual model predicting potential ecological response to fertilization, which includes effects on algal growth and primary production, is presented. In this model, applied fertilizer nitrogen reaching streams is mostly exported during winter. However, some nitrogen retained in soils or stream and riparian areas may become available to aquatic biota during spring and summer. Biological responses may be minimal in small streams nearest to application because of light limitation, but may be elevated downstream where light is sufficient to allow algal growth. Ultimately, algal response could be greatest in downstream reaches, although ambient nutrient concentrations remain low due to uptake and benthic nutrient recycling. Ground-water flow paths and hyporheic processing could be critical in determining the fate of applied nitrogen. A framework is provided for testing this response in the Little River watershed, a tributary to the North Umpqua River, Oregon, at basic and intensive levels of investigation.

  10. A phylogeographic study of the endemic rodent Eliurus carletoni (Rodentia: Nesomyinae) in an ecological transition zone of Northern Madagascar.

    PubMed

    Rakotoarisoa, Jean-Eric; Raheriarisena, Martin; Goodman, Steven M

    2013-01-01

    We conducted a mitochondrial phylogeographic study of the endemic dry forest rodent Eliurus carletoni (Rodentia: Nesomyinae) in an ecological transition zone of northern Madagascar (Loky-Manambato) and 2 surrounding regions (Ankarana and Analamerana). The main goal was to assess the evolutionary consequences on this taxon of the complex landscape features and Quaternary ecological vicissitudes. Three haplogroups were identified from the 215 specimens obtained from 15 populations. High levels of genetic diversity and significant genetic differentiation among populations were observed. The different geographical subdivisions of the study area by regions, by river catchment zones, and the physical distance between populations are not correlated with genetic patterns. In contrast, population structure is mostly explained by the geographic distribution of the samples among existing forest blocks. E. carletoni experienced a genetic bottleneck between 18 750 and 7500 years BP, which correlates with periods when moister climates existed on the island. Overall, our data suggest that the complex genetic patterns of E. carletoni can be explained by Quaternary climatic vicissitudes that resulted in habitat fluctuations between dry and humid forests, as well as subsequent human-induced fragmentation of forest habitat.

  11. Measures to restore metallurgical mine wasteland using ecological restoration technologies: A case study at Longnan Rare Earth Mine

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rao, Yunzhang; Gu, Ruizhi; Guo, Ruikai; Zhang, Xueyan

    2017-01-01

    Whereas mining activities produce the raw materials that are crucial to economic growth, such activities leave extensive scarring on the land, contributing to the waste of valuable land resources and upsetting the ecological environment. The aim of this study is therefore to investigate various ecological technologies to restore metallurgical mine wastelands. These technologies include measures such as soil amelioration, vegetation restoration, different vegetation planting patterns, and engineering technologies. The Longnan Rare Earth Mine in the Jiangxi Province of China is used as the case study. The ecological restoration process provides a favourable reference for the restoration of a metallurgical mine wasteland.

  12. Benefits of studies of overwintering birds for understanding resident bird ecology and promoting development of conservation capacity.

    PubMed

    Latta, Steven C; Faaborg, John

    2009-04-01

    Funding of ecological research and monitoring of Neotropical migratory birds on their overwintering grounds has benefited both migratory and permanent-resident species. Using examples from our work in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, we demonstrate that ecological research of overwintering migrants often provides information about the ecology and demography of little-known tropical resident birds. Critically important long-term monitoring in Puerto Rico with a focus on winter residents has provided information on the relationships between annual rainfall and fluctuations in resident bird populations and survival rates. It also has alerted local biologists to declines in resident bird populations, including a decline apparently driven by the entry of a brood parasite. But migrant-focused research may also have had an underappreciated effect on the development of conservation capacity and conservation efforts in host countries. Investments in research on Neotropical migrants overwintering on Hispaniola have resulted in a huge increase in field training of students and wildlife professionals, promoted conservation awareness at local and national levels, played an important role in the growth and professionalization of key environmental organizations, spawned a growing ecotourism industry for bird-watching, and driven national park management planning and conservation efforts for all bird species. We encourage funding organizations and agencies to consider the broader impacts of funding migratory-bird research and monitoring efforts, and we encourage researchers in the tropics to use protocols that provide the most information about all the birds that use the study areas involved and to be aware of important opportunities that they may have to build capacity in host countries.

  13. High-Level Waste Melter Study Report

    SciTech Connect

    Perez Jr, Joseph M; Bickford, Dennis F; Day, Delbert E; Kim, Dong-Sang; Lambert, Steven L; Marra, Sharon L; Peeler, David K; Strachan, Denis M; Triplett, Mark B; Vienna, John D; Wittman, Richard S

    2001-07-13

    At the Hanford Site in Richland, Washington, the path to site cleanup involves vitrification of the majority of the wastes that currently reside in large underground tanks. A Joule-heated glass melter is the equipment of choice for vitrifying the high-level fraction of these wastes. Even though this technology has general national and international acceptance, opportunities may exist to improve or change the technology to reduce the enormous cost of accomplishing the mission of site cleanup. Consequently, the U.S. Department of Energy requested the staff of the Tanks Focus Area to review immobilization technologies, waste forms, and modifications to requirements for solidification of the high-level waste fraction at Hanford to determine what aspects could affect cost reductions with reasonable long-term risk. The results of this study are summarized in this report.

  14. ATRAZINE ECOLOGICAL EFFECTS ASSESSMENT FOR OPP LEVEL OF CONCERN AND OW WATER QUALITY CRITERION FOR AQUATIC LIFE

    EPA Science Inventory

    Atrazine is a relatively water-soluble and persistent herbicide that can reach concentrations of possible ecological concern for aquatic plants in vulnerable watersheds in regions with high agricultural usage of atrazine. As a consequence, the U.S. EPA Office of Water is current...

  15. Trajectories of legitimate peripheral participation: Ethnographic case studies of learning ecology

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowen, Gervase Michael Reynolds

    1999-09-01

    Current reform documents in education call for elementary and high school students to engage in "authentic" scientific practices. In the past several years a number of authors have suggested that science education research and curriculum development could benefit from insights gained by research in the social studies of science that documents and theorizes science as it is actually done. Yet, although practices of laboratory science are well understood and provide a foundation from which educational practices could be drawn, little is known about the practices of the science disciplines which deal with field research and how people are enculturated into those practices. This dissertation is constituted by a series of research papers on different (although inter-related) topics, in which I examine the enculturation into the practices of field ecology and the world-view that is associated with that enculturation. To better understand the practices of field ecology and how they develop, I conducted several projects: (i) a video ethnography of a second-year university ecology class and observations on research experiences undergraduates experience; (ii) ethnographic research with ecologists conducting field research; (iii) observations of graduate student and professional ecologists as they participated in conferences, engaged in interaction in their laboratory and social settings, and presented/discussed their findings in various settings; (iv) interviews with graduate student and professional ecologists discussing their field research experiences; (v) videotaped interviews with practicing researchers and under/graduate science and non-science students as they interpreted various ecology-related inscriptions; (vi) an analysis of the inscriptions and textual information present in the various texts (textbooks and journals) used to teach students about ecology; and, (vii) observations of elementary school students engaged in practices congruent with those of field

  16. Managing for No Net Loss of Ecological Services: An Approach for Quantifying Loss of Coastal Wetlands due to Sea Level Rise.

    PubMed

    Kassakian, Jennifer; Jones, Ann; Martinich, Jeremy; Hudgens, Daniel

    2017-01-02

    Sea level rise has the potential to substantially alter the extent and nature of coastal wetlands and the critical ecological services they provide. In making choices about how to respond to rising sea level, planners are challenged with weighing easily quantified risks (e.g., loss of property value due to inundation) against those that are more difficult to quantify (e.g., loss of primary production or carbon sequestration services provided by wetlands due to inundation). Our goal was to develop a cost-effective, appropriately-scaled, model-based approach that allows planners to predict, under various sea level rise and response scenarios, the economic cost of wetland loss-with the estimates proxied by the costs of future restoration required to maintain the existing level of wetland habitat services. Our approach applies the Sea Level Affecting Marshes Model to predict changes in wetland habitats over the next century, and then applies Habitat Equivalency Analysis to predict the cost of restoration projects required to maintain ecological services at their present, pre-sea level rise level. We demonstrate the application of this approach in the Delaware Bay estuary and in the Indian River Lagoon (Florida), and discuss how this approach can support future coastal decision-making.

  17. Possibilities of the Integration of the Method of the Ecologically Oriented Independent Scientific Research in the Study Process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grizans, Jurijs; Vanags, Janis

    2010-01-01

    The aim of this paper is to analyse possibilities of the integration of the method of the ecologically oriented independent scientific research in the study process. In order to achieve the set aim, the following scientific research methods were used: analysis of the conceptual guidelines for the development of environmentally oriented entrepreneurship, interpretation of the experts' evaluation of the ecologically oriented management, analysis of the results of the students' ecologically oriented independent scientific research, as well as monographic and logically constructive methods. The results of the study give an opportunity to make conclusions and to develop conceptual recommendations on how to introduce future economics and business professionals with the theoretical and practical aspects of ecologically oriented management during the study process.

  18. Ecological bias in studies of the short-term effects of air pollution on health

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shaddick, Gavin; Lee, Duncan; Wakefield, Jonathan

    2013-06-01

    There has been a great deal of research into the short-term effects of air pollution on health with a large number of studies modelling the association between aggregate disease counts and environmental exposures measured at point locations, for example via air pollution monitors. In such cases, the standard approach is to average the observed measurements from the individual monitors and use this in a log-linear health model. Hence such studies are ecological in nature being based on spatially aggregated health and exposure data. Here we investigate the potential for bias in the estimates of the effects on health when estimating the short-term effects of air pollution on health. Such ecological bias may occur if a simple summary measure, such as a daily mean, is not a suitable summary of a spatially variable pollution surface. We assess the performance of commonly used models when confronted with such issues using simulation studies and compare their performance with a model specifically designed to acknowledge the effects of exposure aggregation. In addition to simulation studies, we apply the models to a case study of the short-term effects of particulate matter on respiratory mortality using data from Greater London for the period 2002-2005. We found a significant increased risk of 3% (95% CI 1-5%) associated with the average of the previous three days exposure to particulate matter (per 10 μg m-3 PM10).

  19. [Dynamic monitoring of ecological environment in loess hilly and gully region of Loess Plateau based on remote sensing: A case study on Fuxian County in Shaanxi Province. Northwest China].

    PubMed

    Li, Fen-ling; Chang, Qin-rui; Shen, Jian; Liu, Jing

    2015-12-01

    Based on the principal component analysis (PCA), four ecological evaluation indicators including vegetation index, wet index, land surface temperature and soil index were combined to evaluate the ecological environment quality of Fuxian County in hilly and gully area of Loess Plateau from year 1995 to 2014. The results showed that the RSEI integrated RS and PCA method could reveal regional ecological changes objectively and quantitatively. The level of overall regional ecological status in Fuxian County was good with a high vegetation fraction and rich biodiversity. The synthetical ecological environment quality index increased from 3.17 to 3.53 indicating the ecological environment had been improved greatly in recent 20 years. The area with best ecological environment quality was located in Niuwu town. The magnitude of change increased progressively from northwest to southeast, and the biggest change occurred in Jiaodao and Nandaode towns. From 1995 to 2014, the areas with decreased and increased ecological environment quality were 16.7% and 42.7% of the study area, respectively, and the improved regions were mainly distributed in plateau and hilly area in the center, rocky low mountainous area in northeast and the Ziwuling Nature Reserve area in southwest of the county.

  20. [Landscape ecological security assessment of Beijing City based on RS and GIS].

    PubMed

    Song, Yu-qin; Cao, Ming-lan

    2010-11-01

    By using RS, GIS, and landscape ecology methods, and based on the landscape structure, function, vitality, ecological sensitivity, and landscape pressure, an evaluation index system of landscape ecological security was constructed to analyze the landscape ecological security level and its spatiotemporal distribution pattern in Beijing City in 1988-2004. During the study period, the ecological service value of Beijing City was on a relatively high level, while the landscape vigor index and landscape pressure were on a relatively low level. The stability of landscape structure dropped, and the ecological sensitivity was also on a relatively low level. In 1998 and 2004, the landscape ecological security index of Beijing City was on a medium level, with the average value being 0.410 and 0.403, respectively, suggesting a slight deterioration in the landscape ecological security during the study period.

  1. Nitrates in municipal drinking water and non-Hodgkin lymphoma: an ecological cancer case-control study in Taiwan.

    PubMed

    Chang, Chih-Ching; Tsai, Shang-Shyue; Wu, Trong-Neng; Yang, Chun-Yuh

    2010-01-01

    The relationship between nitrate levels in drinking water and increased risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) development has been inconclusive. A matched cancer case-control and a nitrate ecology study was used to investigate the association between mortality attributed to NHL and nitrate exposure from Taiwan's drinking water. All deaths due to NHL in Taiwan residents from 2000 through 2006 were obtained from the Bureau of Vital Statistics of the Taiwan Provincial Department of Health. Controls were deaths from other causes and were pair-matched to the cases by gender, year of birth, and year of death. Each matched control was selected randomly from the set of possible controls for each case. Data on nitrate-nitrogen (NO(3)-N) levels of drinking water throughout Taiwan were collected from the Taiwan Water Supply Corporation (TWSC). The municipality of residence for cancer cases and controls was presumed to be the source of the subject's nitrate exposure via drinking water. The adjusted odds ratios (OR) for NHL death for those with high nitrate levels in their drinking water, as compared to the lowest tertile, were 1.02 (0.87-1.2) and 1.05 (0.89-1.24), respectively. The results of the present study show that there was no statistically significant association between nitrates in drinking water at levels in this investigation and increased risk of death attributed to NHL.

  2. Nitrate in drinking water and risk of death from bladder cancer: an ecological case-control study in Taiwan.

    PubMed

    Chiu, Hui-Fen; Tsai, Shang-Shyue; Yang, Chun-Yuh

    2007-06-01

    The relationship between nitrate levels in drinking water and bladder cancer development is controversial. A matched cancer case-control with nitrate ecology study was used to investigate the association between bladder cancer mortality occurrence and nitrate exposure from Taiwan drinking water. All bladder cancer deaths of Taiwan residents from 1999 through 2003 were obtained from the Bureau of Vital Statistics of the Taiwan Provincial Department of Health. Controls were deaths from other causes and were pair-matched to the cases by gender, year of birth,and year of death. Each matched control was selected randomly from the set of possible controls for each cancer case. Data on nitrate-nitrogen (NO3-N) levels in drinking water throughout Taiwan were collected from Taiwan Water Supply Corporation (TWSC). The municipality of residence for cancer cases and controls was assumed to be the source of the subject's nitrate exposure via drinking water. The adjusted odds ratios for bladder cancer death for those with high nitrate levels in their drinking water were 1.76 (1.28-2.42) and 1.96 (1.41-2.72) as compared to the lowest tertile. The results of the present study show that there was a significant positive relationship between the levels of nitrate in drinking water and risk of death from bladder cancer.

  3. Adrenocorticotrophic Hormone Levels in Ground Based Studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Campbell, B. O.

    1972-01-01

    Baseline values of immunoreactive ACTH were established in the normal healthy adult. Normal levels of ACTH secretion were determined for both the male and the female in circulating plasma and serum. The data obtained in these studies are particularly significant in that the sampling was carefully controlled; only healthy employed individuals of both sexes were tested in a routine work situation that would not be considered conducive to stress. It has been found that alterations in the classically described circadian rhythm of ACTH secretion can occur when activities (such as work/rest cycles) are imposed on the individual studied. These changes can be demonstrated even when there is no appreciable change noted in the rhythm of hydrocortisone secretion.

  4. Low level tank waste disposal study

    SciTech Connect

    Mullally, J.A.

    1994-09-29

    Westinghouse Hanford Company (WHC) contracted a team consisting of Los Alamos Technical Associates (LATA), British Nuclear Fuel Laboratories (BNFL), Southwest Research Institute (SwRI), and TRW through the Tank Waste Remediation System (TWRS) Technical Support Contract to conduct a study on several areas concerning vitrification and disposal of low-level-waste (LLW). The purpose of the study was to investigate how several parameters could be specified to achieve full compliance with regulations. The most restrictive regulation governing this disposal activity is the National Primary Drinking Water Act which sets the limits of exposure to 4 mrem per year for a person drinking two liters of ground water daily. To fully comply, this constraint would be met independently of the passage of time. In addition, another key factor in the investigation was the capability to retrieve the disposed waste during the first 50 years as specified in Department of Energy (DOE) Order 5820.2A. The objective of the project was to develop a strategy for effective long-term disposal of the low-level waste at the Hanford site.

  5. Geographical variation in glaucoma prescribing trends in England 2008–2012: an observational ecological study

    PubMed Central

    Wormald, Richard; Khaw, Peng Tee

    2016-01-01

    Objectives To explore (1) the national trend in population-adjusted prescription rates for glaucoma and ocular hypertension (OHT) in England and (2) any geographical variation in glaucoma/OHT prescribing trends and its association with established risk factors for primary open-angle glaucoma (POAG) at the population level. Design Observational ecological study. Setting Primary care in England 2008–2012. Participants All patients who received 1 or more of the 37 778 660 glaucoma/OHT prescription items between 2008 and 2012. Primary and secondary outcome measure methods Glaucoma/OHT prescription statistics for England and its constituent primary care trusts (PCTs) between 2008 and 2012 were divided by annual population estimates to give prescription rates per 100 000 population aged ≥40 years. To examine regional differences, prescription rates and the change in prescription rates between 2008 and 2012 for PCTs were separately entered into multivariable linear regression models with the population proportion aged ≥60 years; the proportion of males; the proportion of West African Diaspora (WAD) ethnicity; PCT funding per capita; Index of Multiple Deprivation 2010 score and its domains. Results Between 2008 and 2012, glaucoma/OHT prescriptions increased from 28 029 to 31 309 items per 100 000 population aged ≥40 years. Between PCTs, nearly a quarter of the variation in prescription rates in 2008 and 2012 could be attributed to age, WAD ethnicity and male gender. The change in prescription rates between 2008 and 2012 was only modestly correlated with age (p=0.003, β=0.234), and income deprivation (p=0.035, β=−0.168). Conclusions Increased population-adjusted glaucoma/OHT prescription rates in the study period were likely due to increased detection of POAG and OHT cases at risk of POAG. Between PCTs, regional variation in overall prescription rates was partly attributable to demographic risk factors for POAG, although the change in

  6. Mood dysregulation and affective instability in emerging adults with childhood maltreatment: An ecological momentary assessment study.

    PubMed

    Teicher, Martin H; Ohashi, Kyoko; Lowen, Steven B; Polcari, Ann; Fitzmaurice, Garrett M

    2015-11-01

    Childhood maltreatment increases risk for mood, anxiety, substance use and personality disorders and is associated with alterations in structure, function and connectivity of brain regions involved in emotional regulation. We sought to assess whether maltreatment was specifically associated with disturbances in positive or negative mood regulation. Ecological momentary ratings were collected with a wristwatch-like device with joy-stick (Seiko ecolog) approximately six times per day over a week in 60 unmedicated participants (22 control, 38 maltreated, 18-25 years old). Forty-five percent of maltreated subjects had a history of major depression but all were currently euthymic. Principal component analysis with varimax rotation was used to provide orthogonal measures of positive and negative valence, which were analyzed for indices of variability, circadian rhythmicity and persistence, using linear and non-linear hierarchical modeling and Hurst analysis. Groups did not differ in mean levels of positive or negative affect. Maltreated subjects had increased variability and circadian and hemicircadian abnormalities in ratings of positive but not negative affect. Conversely, they had higher estimated Hurst exponents for negative but not positive affect ratings indicating a greater degree of persistence. Abnormalities in variability, rhythmicity and persistence were present in both maltreated subjects with and without histories of major depression. These findings suggest that both positive and negative valence systems may be dysregulated in individuals with childhood maltreatment. However the nature of the dysregulation appears to differ fundamentally in these domains, as positive mood ratings were more variable and negative ratings more persistent.

  7. Conserving the Greater Sage-grouse: A social-ecological systems case study from the California-Nevada region

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Duvall, Alison L; Metcalf, Alexander L.; Coates, Peter S.

    2016-01-01

    The Endangered Species Act (ESA) continues to serve as one of the most powerful and contested federal legislative mandates for conservation. In the midst of heated debates, researchers, policy makers, and conservation practitioners champion the importance of cooperative conservation and social-ecological systems approaches, which forge partnerships at multiple levels and scales to address complex ecosystem challenges. However, few real-world examples exist to demonstrate how multifaceted collaborations among stakeholders who share a common goal of conserving at-risk species may be nested within a systems framework to achieve social and ecological goals. Here, we present a case study of Greater Sage-grouse (Centrocercus urophasianus) conservation efforts in the “Bi-State” region of California and Nevada, United States. Using key-informant interviews, we explored dimensions and drivers of this landscape-scale conservation effort. Three themes emerged from the interviews, including 1) ESA action was transformed into opportunity for system-wide conservation; 2) a diverse, locally based partnership anchored collaboration and engagement across multiple levels and scales; and 3) best-available science combined with local knowledge led to “certainty of effectiveness and implementation”—the criteria used by the US Fish and Wildlife Service to evaluate conservation efforts when making listing decisions. Ultimately, collaborative conservation through multistakeholder engagement at various levels and scales led to proactive planning and implementation of conservation measures and precluded the need for an ESA listing of the Bi-State population of Greater Sage-grouse. This article presents a potent example of how a systems approach integrating policy, management, and learning can be used to successfully overcome the conflict-laden and “wicked” challenges that surround at-risk species conservation.

  8. [Urban ecological risk assessment: a review].

    PubMed

    Wang, Mei-E; Chen, Wei-Ping; Peng, Chi

    2014-03-01

    With the development of urbanization and the degradation of urban living environment, urban ecological risks caused by urbanization have attracted more and more attentions. Based on urban ecology principles and ecological risk assessment frameworks, contents of urban ecological risk assessment were reviewed in terms of driven forces, risk resources, risk receptors, endpoints and integrated approaches for risk assessment. It was suggested that types and degrees of urban economical and social activities were the driven forces for urban ecological risks. Ecological functional components at different levels in urban ecosystems as well as the urban system as a whole were the risk receptors. Assessment endpoints involved in changes of urban ecological structures, processes, functional components and the integrity of characteristic and function. Social-ecological models should be the major approaches for urban ecological risk assessment. Trends for urban ecological risk assessment study should focus on setting a definite protection target and criteria corresponding to assessment endpoints, establishing a multiple-parameter assessment system and integrative assessment approaches.

  9. Ecological studies of bison in the Greater Yellowstone Area: Development and implementation

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gogan, Peter J.; Mack, John A.; Brewster, Wayne G.; Olexa, Edward M.; Clark, Wendy E.

    2001-01-01

    Bison (Bison bison) of the Greater Yellowstone Area (GYA) are perhaps best known to the scientific community from the classic study of Meagher (1973) that reviewed their ecological status and management from the time of establishment of Yellowstone National Park in 1872 through the last National Park Service (NPS) removals of bison within the park in 1966. Since cessation of herd reductions in the park, bison numbers within Yellowstone increased (Dobson and Meagher 1996), as did range use (Meagher 1989b), including increased frequency and magnitude of movements beyond the park boundaries in winter (Meagher 1989a; Pac and Frey 1991; Cheville et al. 1998).

  10. Simulation of regionally ecological land based on a cellular automation model: a case study of Beijing, China.

    PubMed

    Xie, Hualin; Kung, Chih-Chun; Zhang, Yanting; Li, Xiubin

    2012-08-01

    Ecological land is like the "liver" of a city and is very useful to public health. Ecological land change is a spatially dynamic non-linear process under the interaction between natural and anthropogenic factors at different scales. In this study, by setting up natural development scenario, object orientation scenario and ecosystem priority scenario, a Cellular Automation (CA) model has been established to simulate the evolution pattern of ecological land in Beijing in the year 2020. Under the natural development scenario, most of ecological land will be replaced by construction land and crop land. But under the scenarios of object orientation and ecosystem priority, the ecological land area will increase, especially under the scenario of ecosystem priority. When considering the factors such as total area of ecological land, loss of key ecological land and spatial patterns of land use, the scenarios from priority to inferiority are ecosystem priority, object orientation and natural development, so future land management policies in Beijing should be focused on conversion of cropland to forest, wetland protection and prohibition of exploitation of natural protection zones, water source areas and forest parks to maintain the safety of the regional ecosystem.

  11. Simulation of Regionally Ecological Land Based on a Cellular Automation Model: A Case Study of Beijing, China

    PubMed Central

    Xie, Hualin; Kung, Chih-Chun; Zhang, Yanting; Li, Xiubin

    2012-01-01

    Ecological land is like the “liver” of a city and is very useful to public health. Ecological land change is a spatially dynamic non-linear process under the interaction between natural and anthropogenic factors at different scales. In this study, by setting up natural development scenario, object orientation scenario and ecosystem priority scenario, a Cellular Automation (CA) model has been established to simulate the evolution pattern of ecological land in Beijing in the year 2020. Under the natural development scenario, most of ecological land will be replaced by construction land and crop land. But under the scenarios of object orientation and ecosystem priority, the ecological land area will increase, especially under the scenario of ecosystem priority. When considering the factors such as total area of ecological land, loss of key ecological land and spatial patterns of land use, the scenarios from priority to inferiority are ecosystem priority, object orientation and natural development, so future land management policies in Beijing should be focused on conversion of cropland to forest, wetland protection and prohibition of exploitation of natural protection zones, water source areas and forest parks to maintain the safety of the regional ecosystem. PMID:23066410

  12. Administrative Ecology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McGarity, Augustus C., III; Maulding, Wanda

    2007-01-01

    This article discusses how all four facets of administrative ecology help dispel the claims about the "impossibility" of the superintendency. These are personal ecology, professional ecology, organizational ecology, and community ecology. Using today's superintendency as an administrative platform, current literature describes a preponderance of…

  13. Are the serious problems in cancer survival partly rooted in gatekeeper principles? An ecologic study

    PubMed Central

    Vedsted, Peter; Olesen, Frede

    2011-01-01

    Background It is puzzling to note that British and Danish citizens have a poorer cancer prognosis than citizens from other countries, and this study hypothesises that their low cancer survival could be partly rooted in the gatekeeper function undertaken by general practice in these two countries. Aim To test the association between principles of gatekeeper systems and cancer survival. Design and setting An ecologic study with data from EUROCARE-4 and primary care structure. Method This hypothesis was tested in an ecologic study on the association between three principles of gatekeeper systems and cancer survival in 19 European countries for which valid and full data were available. Results It was found that healthcare systems with a gatekeeper system do have a significantly lower 1-year relative cancer survival than systems without such gatekeeperfunctions. Conclusion The possible mechanisms behind this finding are discussed, and while all the positive aspects of gatekeeping are recognised, it is strongly recommended that further research be conducted to confirm or reject the study hypothesis on this possible serious adverse effect of gatekeeping. PMID:21801563

  14. Clade-level Spatial Modelling of HPAI H5N1 Dynamics in the Mekong Region Reveals New Patterns and Associations with Agro-Ecological Factors.

    PubMed

    Artois, Jean; Newman, Scott H; Dhingra, Madhur S; Chaiban, Celia; Linard, Catherine; Cattoli, Giovanni; Monne, Isabella; Fusaro, Alice; Xenarios, Ioannis; Engler, Robin; Liechti, Robin; Kuznetsov, Dmitri; Pham, Thanh Long; Nguyen, Tung; Pham, Van Dong; Castellan, David; Von Dobschuetz, Sophie; Claes, Filip; Dauphin, Gwenaëlle; Inui, Ken; Gilbert, Marius

    2016-07-25

    The highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N1 virus has been circulating in Asia since 2003 and diversified into several genetic lineages, or clades. Although the spatial distribution of its outbreaks was extensively studied, differences in clades were never previously taken into account. We developed models to quantify associations over time and space between different HPAI H5N1 viruses from clade 1, 2.3.4 and 2.3.2 and agro-ecological factors. We found that the distribution of clades in the Mekong region from 2004 to 2013 was strongly regionalised, defining specific epidemiological zones, or epizones. Clade 1 became entrenched in the Mekong Delta and was not supplanted by newer clades, in association with a relatively higher presence of domestic ducks. In contrast, two new clades were introduced (2.3.4 and 2.3.2) in northern Viet Nam and were associated with higher chicken density and more intensive chicken production systems. We suggest that differences in poultry production systems in these different epizones may explain these associations, along with differences in introduction pressure from neighbouring countries. The different distribution patterns found at the clade level would not be otherwise apparent through analysis treating all outbreaks equally, which requires improved linking of disease outbreak records and genetic sequence data.

  15. Clade-level Spatial Modelling of HPAI H5N1 Dynamics in the Mekong Region Reveals New Patterns and Associations with Agro-Ecological Factors

    PubMed Central

    Artois, Jean; Newman, Scott H.; Dhingra, Madhur S.; Chaiban, Celia; Linard, Catherine; Cattoli, Giovanni; Monne, Isabella; Fusaro, Alice; Xenarios, Ioannis; Engler, Robin; Liechti, Robin; Kuznetsov, Dmitri; Pham, Thanh Long; Nguyen, Tung; Pham, Van Dong; Castellan, David; Von Dobschuetz, Sophie; Claes, Filip; Dauphin, Gwenaëlle; Inui, Ken; Gilbert, Marius

    2016-01-01

    The highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) H5N1 virus has been circulating in Asia since 2003 and diversified into several genetic lineages, or clades. Although the spatial distribution of its outbreaks was extensively studied, differences in clades were never previously taken into account. We developed models to quantify associations over time and space between different HPAI H5N1 viruses from clade 1, 2.3.4 and 2.3.2 and agro-ecological factors. We found that the distribution of clades in the Mekong region from 2004 to 2013 was strongly regionalised, defining specific epidemiological zones, or epizones. Clade 1 became entrenched in the Mekong Delta and was not supplanted by newer clades, in association with a relatively higher presence of domestic ducks. In contrast, two new clades were introduced (2.3.4 and 2.3.2) in northern Viet Nam and were associated with higher chicken density and more intensive chicken production systems. We suggest that differences in poultry production systems in these different epizones may explain these associations, along with differences in introduction pressure from neighbouring countries. The different distribution patterns found at the clade level would not be otherwise apparent through analysis treating all outbreaks equally, which requires improved linking of disease outbreak records and genetic sequence data. PMID:27453195

  16. . Ecological conceptual models: a framework and case study on ecosystem management for South Florida sustainability

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Gentile, J.H.; Harwell, M.A.; Cropper, W.; Harwell, C. C.; DeAngelis, Donald L.; Davis, S.; Ogden, J.C.; Lirman, D.

    2001-01-01

    The Everglades and South Florida ecosystems are the focus of national and international attention because of their current degraded and threatened state. Ecological risk assessment, sustainability and ecosystem and adaptive management principles and processes are being used nationally as a decision and policy framework for a variety of types of ecological assessments. The intent of this study is to demonstrate the application of these paradigms and principles at a regional scale. The effects-directed assessment approach used in this study consists of a retrospective, eco-epidemiological phase to determine the causes for the current conditions and a prospective predictive risk-based assessment using scenario analysis to evaluate future options. Embedded in these assessment phases is a process that begins with the identification of goals and societal preferences which are used to develop an integrated suite of risk-based and policy relevant conceptual models. Conceptual models are used to illustrate the linkages among management (societal) actions, environmental stressors, and societal/ecological effects, and provide the basis for developing and testing causal hypotheses. These models, developed for a variety of landscape units and their drivers, stressors, and endpoints, are used to formulate hypotheses to explain the current conditions. They are also used as the basis for structuring management scenarios and analyses to project the temporal and spatial magnitude of risk reduction and system recovery. Within the context of recovery, the conceptual models are used in the initial development of performance criteria for those stressors that are determined to be most important in shaping the landscape, and to guide the use of numerical models used to develop quantitative performance criteria in the scenario analysis. The results will be discussed within an ecosystem and adaptive management framework that provides the foundation for decision making.

  17. Studies on the Ecological Adaptability of Growing Rice with Floating Bed on the Dilute Biogas Slurry.

    PubMed

    Kang, Qun; Li, Rui; Du, Qi; Cheng, Bowen; Liao, Zhiqi; Sun, Chengcheng; Li, Zhaohua

    2016-01-01

    This study aimed to explore the ecological adaptability and the possibility of growing rice with floating bed on the dilute biogas slurry. The results of the experiments show that the growth stage, rice plant height, and rice yield and quality were significantly affected by multiple dilutions; rice plants cultivated with 45 multiple dilutions had better ecological adaptability than others. In the 45 multiple dilutions' group, the yield of rice was 13.3 g/bucket (8 rice plants), milled rice rate was 63.1%, and the content of crude protein in the rice was 6.3%. The concentrations of heavy metals in the rice cultivated with 30 multiple dilutions' slurry, such as total lead, cadmium, mercury, chromium, and arsenic, were all below the national standard. The study shows that it is possible and safe to cultivate rice plants with no soil but diluted biogas slurry. In the experiments, the yield, milled rice rate, and crude protein of the rice cultivated with slurry were not as much as those of rice cultivated with regular way in soil. This study provides the basic theoretical support for the development of biogas projects and the potential achievement of organic farming in special agricultural facilities and circular economy.

  18. Cavity types and microclimate: implications for ecological, evolutionary, and conservation studies.

    PubMed

    Amat-Valero, M; Calero-Torralbo, M A; Václav, R; Valera, F

    2014-11-01

    The abiotic conditions of the immediate environment of organisms are key factors for a better understanding of ecological and evolutionary processes. Yet, information in this regard is biased towards some habitat types, landscapes, and organisms. Here, we present a 2-year comparative study of the microclimatic properties (temperature, relative humidity, and their fluctuation) of three cavity types (nest boxes, cavities in bridges, and burrows in sandy cliffs) in an arid environment. We found marked and consistent months-long differences in microclimate among the three cavity types. Nest boxes were colder than the other cavity types, with temperature oscillations being an order of magnitude higher than in other cavity types. In contrast, microclimate was very stable in burrows and cavities in bridges, the former being generally warmer and drier than the latter. We also discuss the biological implications of microclimatic conditions and its variation in different cavity types by presenting two case studies, namely the temperature-humidity index and water vapor pressure during the hatching period of an endotherm and the chilling period during the diapause of an ectotherm ectoparasite. We stress the need for comparative studies of the same organisms subjected to different microclimates given the important ecological, evolutionary, and conservation implications.

  19. Studies on the Ecological Adaptability of Growing Rice with Floating Bed on the Dilute Biogas Slurry

    PubMed Central

    Du, Qi; Cheng, Bowen; Liao, Zhiqi; Sun, Chengcheng

    2016-01-01

    This study aimed to explore the ecological adaptability and the possibility of growing rice with floating bed on the dilute biogas slurry. The results of the experiments show that the growth stage, rice plant height, and rice yield and quality were significantly affected by multiple dilutions; rice plants cultivated with 45 multiple dilutions had better ecological adaptability than others. In the 45 multiple dilutions' group, the yield of rice was 13.3 g/bucket (8 rice plants), milled rice rate was 63.1%, and the content of crude protein in the rice was 6.3%. The concentrations of heavy metals in the rice cultivated with 30 multiple dilutions' slurry, such as total lead, cadmium, mercury, chromium, and arsenic, were all below the national standard. The study shows that it is possible and safe to cultivate rice plants with no soil but diluted biogas slurry. In the experiments, the yield, milled rice rate, and crude protein of the rice cultivated with slurry were not as much as those of rice cultivated with regular way in soil. This study provides the basic theoretical support for the development of biogas projects and the potential achievement of organic farming in special agricultural facilities and circular economy. PMID:27882324

  20. An Ecological Study of Food Desert Prevalence and 4th Grade Academic Achievement in New York State School Districts

    PubMed Central

    Frndak, Seth E.

    2014-01-01

    Background This ecological study examines the relationship between food desert prevalence and academic achievement at the school district level. Design and methods Sample included 232 suburban and urban school districts in New York State. Multiple open-source databases were merged to obtain: 4th grade science, English and math scores, school district demographic composition (NYS Report Card), regional socioeconomic indicators (American Community Survey), school district quality (US Common Core of Data), and food desert data (USDA Food Desert Atlas). Multiple regression models assessed the percentage of variation in achievement scores explained by food desert variables, after controlling for additional predictors. Results The proportion of individuals living in food deserts significantly explained 4th grade achievement scores, after accounting for additional predictors. School districts with higher proportions of individuals living in food desert regions demonstrated lower 4th grade achievement across science, English and math. Conclusions Food deserts appear to be related to academic achievement at the school district level among urban and suburban regions. Further research is needed to better understand how food access is associated with academic achievement at the individual level. Significance for public health The prevalence of food deserts in the United States is of national concern. As poor nutrition in United States children continues to spark debate, food deserts are being evaluated as potential sources of low fruit and vegetable intake and high obesity rates. Cognitive development and IQ have been linked to nutrition patterns, suggesting that children in food desert regions may have a disadvantage academically. This research evaluates if an ecological relationship between food desert prevalence and academic achievement at the school district level can be demonstrated. Results suggest that food desert prevalence may relate to poor academic performance at

  1. The role of geographical ecological studies in identifying diseases linked to UVB exposure and/or vitamin D

    PubMed Central

    Grant, William B.

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Using a variety of approaches, researchers have studied the health effects of solar ultraviolet (UV) radiation exposure and vitamin D. This review compares the contributions from geographical ecological studies with those of observational studies and clinical trials. Health outcomes discussed were based on the author's knowledge and include anaphylaxis/food allergy, atopic dermatitis and eczema, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, autism, back pain, cancer, dental caries, diabetes mellitus type 1, hypertension, inflammatory bowel disease, lupus, mononucleosis, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson disease, pneumonia, rheumatoid arthritis, and sepsis. Important interactions have taken place between study types; sometimes ecological studies were the first to report an inverse correlation between solar UVB doses and health outcomes such as for cancer, leading to both observational studies and clinical trials. In other cases, ecological studies added to the knowledge base. Many ecological studies include other important risk-modifying factors, thereby minimizing the chance of reporting the wrong link. Laboratory studies of mechanisms generally support the role of vitamin D in the outcomes discussed. Indications exist that for some outcomes, UVB effects may be independent of vitamin D. This paper discusses the concept of the ecological fallacy, noting that it applies to all epidemiological studies. PMID:27195055

  2. The role of geographical ecological studies in identifying diseases linked to UVB exposure and/or vitamin D.

    PubMed

    Grant, William B

    2016-01-01

    Using a variety of approaches, researchers have studied the health effects of solar ultraviolet (UV) radiation exposure and vitamin D. This review compares the contributions from geographical ecological studies with those of observational studies and clinical trials. Health outcomes discussed were based on the author's knowledge and include anaphylaxis/food allergy, atopic dermatitis and eczema, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, autism, back pain, cancer, dental caries, diabetes mellitus type 1, hypertension, inflammatory bowel disease, lupus, mononucleosis, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson disease, pneumonia, rheumatoid arthritis, and sepsis. Important interactions have taken place between study types; sometimes ecological studies were the first to report an inverse correlation between solar UVB doses and health outcomes such as for cancer, leading to both observational studies and clinical trials. In other cases, ecological studies added to the knowledge base. Many ecological studies include other important risk-modifying factors, thereby minimizing the chance of reporting the wrong link. Laboratory studies of mechanisms generally support the role of vitamin D in the outcomes discussed. Indications exist that for some outcomes, UVB effects may be independent of vitamin D. This paper discusses the concept of the ecological fallacy, noting that it applies to all epidemiological studies.

  3. Ecological relevance of biomarkers in monitoring studies of macro-invertebrates and fish in Mediterranean rivers.

    PubMed

    Colin, Nicole; Porte, Cinta; Fernandes, Denise; Barata, Carlos; Padrós, Francesc; Carrassón, Maite; Monroy, Mario; Cano-Rocabayera, Oriol; de Sostoa, Adolfo; Piña, Benjamín; Maceda-Veiga, Alberto

    2016-01-01

    Mediterranean rivers are probably one of the most singular and endangered ecosystems worldwide due to the presence of many endemic species and a long history of anthropogenic impacts. Besides a conservation value per se, biodiversity is related to the services that ecosystems provide to society and the ability of these to cope with stressors, including climate change. Using macro-invertebrates and fish as sentinel organisms, this overview presents a synthesis of the state of the art in the application of biomarkers (stress and enzymatic responses, endocrine disruptors, trophic tracers, energy and bile metabolites, genotoxic indicators, histopathological and behavioural alterations, and genetic and cutting edge omic markers) to determine the causes and effects of anthropogenic stressors on the biodiversity of European Mediterranean rivers. We also discuss how a careful selection of sentinel species according to their ecological traits and the food-web structure of Mediterranean rivers could increase the ecological relevance of biomarker responses. Further, we provide suggestions to better harmonise ecological realism with experimental design in biomarker studies, including statistical analyses, which may also deliver a more comprehensible message to managers and policy makers. By keeping on the safe side the health status of populations of multiple-species in a community, we advocate to increase the resilience of fluvial ecosystems to face present and forecasted stressors. In conclusion, this review provides evidence that multi-biomarker approaches detect early signs of impairment in populations, and supports their incorporation in the standardised procedures of the Water Frame Work Directive to better appraise the status of European water bodies.

  4. Ecology, Microbial

    SciTech Connect

    Konopka, Allan

    2009-03-19

    Microbial ecology is a relatively young discipline within the field of microbiology. Its modern history spans just the past 60 years, and the field is defined by its emphasis on understanding the interactions of microbes with their environment, rather than their behavior under artificial laboratory conditions. Because microbes are ubiquitous, microbial ecologists study a broad diversity of habitats that range from aquatic to terrestrial to plant- or animal-associated. This has made it a challenge to identify unifying principles within the field. One approach is to recognize that although the activity of microbes in nature have effects at the macroscale, they interact with their physical, chemical and biological milieu at a scale of micrometers. At this scale, several different microbial ecosystems can be defined, based upon association with particles, the presence of environmental gradients and the continuous availability of water. Principles applicable to microbial ecology reflect not only their population ecology and physiological ecology, but also their broad versatility and quantitative importance in the biosphere as biogeochemical catalysts and capacity for rapid physiological and evolutionary responses.

  5. Ecology, Microbial

    SciTech Connect

    Konopka, Allan

    2009-05-15

    Microbial ecology is a relatively young discipline within the field of microbiology. Its modern history spans just the past 60 years, and the field is defined by its emphasis on understanding the interactions of microbes with their environment, rather than their behavior under artificial laboratory conditions. Because microbes are ubiquitous, microbial ecologists study a broad diversity of habitats that range from aquatic to terrestrial to plant- or animal-associated. This has made it a challenge to identify unifying principles within the field. One approach is to recognize that although the activity of microbes in nature have effects at the macroscale, they interact with their physical, chemical and biological milieu at a scale of micrometers. At this scale, several different microbial ecosystems can be defined, based upon association with particles, the presence of environmental gradients and the continuous availability of water. Principles applicable to microbial ecology reflect not only their population ecology and physiological ecology, but also their broad versatility and quantitative importance in the biosphere as biogeochemical catalysts and capacity for rapid physiological and evolutionary responses.

  6. A comparative ecological study of selected cancers in Kanawha County, West Virginia

    SciTech Connect

    Day, R.; Talbott, E.O.; Marsh, G.M.; Case, B.W. )

    1992-01-01

    This study compares mortality rates for selected causes of death in Kanawha County, West Virginia, to rates reported in a number of geographically defined populations for 1950-1984. Specific conditions selected for study included cancers of the biliary passages and liver, the bladder and other urinary organs, and the central nervous system (CNS), as well as leukemia and aleukemia, lymphosarcoma and reticulosarcoma, Hodgkin's disease, and cancer of all other lymphopoietic tissue. The analysis made use of several techniques for the investigation of ecological data, including the modeling of rates using Poission regression. The primary findings of this study concern two subgroups of cancers of the lymphatic and hematopoietic tissue: (1) leukemia and aleukemia, and (2) lymphosarcoma and reticulosarcoma. For both subgroups of cancers, white male residents of Kanawha County show evidence of significantly elevated mortality rates over the 35-year period of this study.

  7. Assessment of Regional Sustainability Based on Modified Ecological Footprint: A Case Study of Suzhou, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Haizhen; Li, Aimei; Ye, Tian

    2010-11-01

    Ecological Footprint (EF) is an effective method to measure quantitatively sustainable development. However original EF analysis of sustainability at the regional scale provides easily misinterpreted information, which could not reflect truly the pressure of the regional population on the local ecosystem due to the regional import and export. A regional ecosystem could support the local population consumption entirely depending on import, while shift the ecological pressure to other regions and the local ecosystems is thus well preserved. To assess sustainability of a region exactly, two concepts of the consumptive EF and productive EF were put forward. As we acknowledged that original EF only measures human demand for biological goods and services, and does not capture other aspects of social or economic sustainability. Therefore, to assess comprehensively regional sustainability, we attempted to combine several social indicators including unit GDP (Gross Domestic Product) EF, integrated development satisfaction, comprehensive pressure index with the indicator of EF. Also the application to a municipal was discussed. The time series of EF of study area were accounted and the sustainable development status were assessed from 1993 to 2002. Based on the result of EF analysis and the realities of study area, the feasibility of amendments proposed were assessed. Results showed that the amendments proposed were reasonable and feasible, and the resized model could better evaluate the sustainability of a region.

  8. The genome sequence of Barbarea vulgaris facilitates the study of ecological biochemistry

    PubMed Central

    Byrne, Stephen L.; Erthmann, Pernille Østerbye; Agerbirk, Niels; Bak, Søren; Hauser, Thure Pavlo; Nagy, Istvan; Paina, Cristiana; Asp, Torben

    2017-01-01

    The genus Barbarea has emerged as a model for evolution and ecology of plant defense compounds, due to its unusual glucosinolate profile and production of saponins, unique to the Brassicaceae. One species, B. vulgaris, includes two ‘types’, G-type and P-type that differ in trichome density, and their glucosinolate and saponin profiles. A key difference is the stereochemistry of hydroxylation of their common phenethylglucosinolate backbone, leading to epimeric glucobarbarins. Here we report a draft genome sequence of the G-type, and re-sequencing of the P-type for comparison. This enables us to identify candidate genes underlying glucosinolate diversity, trichome density, and study the genetics of biochemical variation for glucosinolate and saponins. B. vulgaris is resistant to the diamondback moth, and may be exploited for “dead-end” trap cropping where glucosinolates stimulate oviposition and saponins deter larvae to the extent that they die. The B. vulgaris genome will promote the study of mechanisms in ecological biochemistry to benefit crop resistance breeding. PMID:28094805

  9. Connecting scales: achieving in-field pest control from areawide and landscape ecology studies.

    PubMed

    Schellhorn, Nancy A; Parry, Hazel R; Macfadyen, Sarina; Wang, Yongmo; Zalucki, Myron P

    2015-02-01

    Areawide management has a long history of achieving solutions that target pests, however, there has been little focus on the areawide management of arthropod natural enemies. Landscape ecology studies that show a positive relationship between natural enemy abundance and habitat diversity demonstrate landscape-dependent pest suppression, but have not yet clearly linked their findings to pest management or to the suite of pests associated with crops that require control. Instead the focus has often been on model systems of single pest species and their natural enemies. We suggest that management actions to capture pest control from natural enemies may be forth coming if: (i) the suite of response and predictor variables focus on pest complexes and specific management actions; (ii) the contribution of "the landscape" is identified by assessing the timing and numbers of natural enemies immigrating and emigrating to and from the target crop, as well as pests; and (iii) pest control thresholds aligned with crop development stages are the benchmark to measure impact of natural enemies on pests, in turn allowing for comparison between study regions, and generalizations. To achieve pest control we will need to incorporate what has been learned from an ecological understanding of model pest and natural enemy systems and integrate areawide landscape management with in-field pest management.

  10. Integrating ICT at the Faculty Level: A Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Altun, Sadegul Akbaba; Kalayci, Esin; Avci, Ummuhan

    2011-01-01

    ICT integration can be realized at various levels: It can be at a state level (central government); at an institutional level (Higher Education Councils); at an organizational level (universities and schools); at a faculty level; at a department level, or at an individual level. Thus, ICT integration can be studied at macro level as a system, or…

  11. No simple answers for ecological immunology: relationships among immune indices at the individual level break down at the species level in waterfowl

    PubMed Central

    Matson, Kevin D; Cohen, Alan A; Klasing, Kirk C; Ricklefs, Robert E; Scheuerlein, Alexander

    2005-01-01

    Understanding immune function in the context of other life-history traits is crucial to understand the evolution of life histories, at both the individual and species levels. As the interest in assessing immune function for these comparative purposes grows, an important question remains unanswered: can immune function be broadly characterized using one or two simple measures? Often, interpretation of individual assays is ambiguous and relationships among different measures of immune function remain poorly understood. Thus, we employed five protocols to measure 13 variables of immune function in ten species of waterfowl (Anseriformes). All assays were based on a single blood sample subdivided into leukocyte (blood smear) and plasma (frozen until analysis) components. All assays were run using samples from every individual, and a nested analysis was used to partition variation/covariation at the levels of species and individuals within species. We detected positive correlations between functionally related measures of immunity within species, but these were absent from comparisons between species. A canonical correlation analysis revealed no significant relationships between the plasma and leukocyte assays at the levels of both individual and species, suggesting that these measures of immunity are neither competitive nor synergistic. We conclude that one measure of each assay type may be required to maximally characterize immune function in studies of a single species, while the same is not true in studies among species. PMID:16618674

  12. Association between gastric cancer mortality and nitrate content of drinking water: ecological study on small area inequalities.

    PubMed

    Sandor, J; Kiss, I; Farkas, O; Ember, I

    2001-01-01

    The carcinogenic feature of N-nitroso compounds has been well established. Similarly, the transformation of ingested nitrate to N-nitroso compounds in the stomach has been thoroughly documented, nevertheless nitrates' carcinogenic effect has not been proved convincingly in human. The present study was aimed to investigate a population of small villages provided by drinking water with high and widely variable nitrate content (72 mg/l median, 290.7 mg/l 95-percentile concentration). Empirical Bayes estimates for settlement-specific age-, sex-, and year-standardised mortality ratios of gastric cancer (GC) were related to the settlement level average nitrate concentrations in drinking water controlling for confounding effects of smoking, ethnicity and education. The log-transformed average nitrate concentration showed significant positive association with stomach cancer mortality in linear regression analysis (p = 0.014). The settlements were aggregated according to the nitrate concentration into 10-percentile groups and the standardised mortality ratios (SMRs) were calculated. Those groups with higher than 88 mg/l average nitrate concentration showed substantial risk elevation and the log-transformed exposure variables proved to be significant predictors of mortality (p = 0.032) at this level of aggregation also. The association seemed to be fairly strong (r2 = 0.46). Although this investigation constituting an ecological study has certain limitations, it supports the hypothesis that the high level of nitrate in drinking water is involved in the development of GC.

  13. Ecological Schoolyards.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Danks, Sharon Gamson

    2000-01-01

    Presents design guidelines and organizational and site principles for creating schoolyards where students can learn about ecology. Principles for building schoolyard ecological systems are described. (GR)

  14. [Maternal mortality and impact of dengue in Southeast Brazil: an ecological study, 2001-2005].

    PubMed

    Mota, Anne Karin Madureira da; Miranda Filho, Adalberto Luiz; Saraceni, Valéria; Koifman, Sergio

    2012-06-01

    The aim of this study was to explore the distribution of reproductive outcomes following dengue virus infection during pregnancy (2001-2005). An ecological epidemiological study was conducted in all counties with more than 80,000 inhabitants in Southeast Brazil. The study explored the correlation between dengue incidence rates in women 15-39 years of age and selected mortality indicators (maternal, fetal, perinatal, neonatal, early neonatal, and infant) in these counties, and Spearman correlation coefficients were calculated. A positive correlation was observed between median dengue incidence in women 15-39 years of age and median maternal mortality (r = 0.88; 95%CI: 0.51; 1.00), with a determination coefficient R² = 0.78. The correlation between dengue incidence in childbearing-age women and reproductive outcomes in Southeast Brazil suggests that dengue infection during pregnancy can negatively impact its outcome and increase maternal mortality.

  15. Simulation and experimental studies of operators` decision styles and crew composition while using an ecological and traditional user interface for the control room of a nuclear power plant

    SciTech Connect

    Meshkati, N.; Buller, B.J.; Azadeh, M.A.

    1995-04-01

    The goal of this research is threefold: (1) use of the Skill-, Rule-, and Knowledge-based levels of cognitive control -- the SRK framework -- to develop an integrated information processing conceptual framework (for integration of workstation, job, and team design); (2) to evaluate the user interface component of this framework -- the Ecological display; and (3) to analyze the effect of operators` individual information processing behavior and decision styles on handling plant disturbances plus their performance on, and preference for, Traditional and Ecological user interfaces. A series of studies were conducted. In Part I, a computer simulation model and a mathematical model were developed. In Part II, an experiment was designed and conducted at the EBR-II plant of the Argonne National Laboratory-West in Idaho Falls, Idaho. It is concluded that: the integrated SRK-based information processing model for control room operations is superior to the conventional rule-based model; operators` individual decision styles and the combination of their styles play a significant role in effective handling of nuclear power plant disturbances; use of the Ecological interface results in significantly more accurate event diagnosis and recall of various plant parameters, faster response to plant transients, and higher ratings of subject preference; and operators` decision styles affect on both their performance and preference for the Ecological interface.

  16. Heavy metal levels in dune sands from Matanzas urban resorts and Varadero beach (Cuba): Assessment of contamination and ecological risks.

    PubMed

    Díaz Rizo, Oscar; Buzón González, Fran; Arado López, Juana O; Denis Alpízar, Otoniel

    2015-12-30

    Concentrations of chromium (Cr), nickel (Ni), copper (Cu), zinc (Zn) and lead (Pb) in dune sands from six urban and suburban Matanzas (Cuba) resorts and Varadero beach were estimated by X-ray fluorescence analysis. Ranges of metal contents in dune sands show a strong variation across the studied locations (in mg/kg(-1)): 20-2964 for Cr, 17-183 for Ni, 17-51 for Cu, 18-88 for Zn and 5-29 for Pb. The values of contamination factors and contamination degrees how that two of the studied Matanzas's resorts (Judio and Chirry) are strongly polluted. The comparison with Sediment Quality Guidelines shows that dune sands from Judio resort represent a serious risk for humans, due to polluted Cr and Ni levels, while sands from the rest of the studied resorts, including Varadero beach, do not represent any risk for public use.

  17. Depressive symptoms and baseline prefrontal EEG alpha activity: a study utilizing Ecological Momentary Assessment.

    PubMed

    Putnam, Katherine M; McSweeney, Lauren B

    2008-02-01

    Prefrontal cortex (PFC) electroencephalography (EEG) alpha asymmetry has been found in individuals with major depression. However, EEG activity has never been examined in regard to specific depressive symptoms. We examine the relationship between resting baseline PFC alpha activity and both rumination and self-esteem in a depressed outpatient group (N=6) and a healthy control group (N=7) using high-density EEG sampling and multiple longitudinal self report measures, i.e. Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA). Symptom measures were collected five times daily for 7 days, i.e. 35 assessments. Using a mixed-level analysis, significant Group x Hemisphere interactions for PFC sites and both rumination and self-esteem were found. Within the depressed group, lower bilateral PFC activity predicted higher levels of rumination, and lower right PFC activity predicted higher levels of self-esteem. There were no significant effects for the control group. Results indicate that specific symptoms of depression are uniquely associated with patterns of PFC EEG alpha activity.

  18. Drosophila yakuba mayottensis, a new model for the study of incipient ecological speciation.

    PubMed

    Yassin, Amir

    2017-01-02

    A full understanding of how ecological factors drive the fixation of genetic changes during speciation is obscured by the lack of appropriate models with clear natural history and powerful genetic toolkits. In a recent study, we described an early stage of ecological speciation in a population of the generalist species Drosophila yakuba (melanogaster subgroup) on the island of Mayotte (Indian Ocean). On this island, flies are strongly associated with the toxic fruits of noni (Morinda citrifolia) and show a partial degree of pre-zygotic reproductive isolation. Here, I mine the nuclear and mitochondrial genomes and provide a full morphological description of this population. Only 29 nuclear sites (< 4 × 10(-7) of the genome) are fixed in this population and absent from 3 mainland populations and the closest relative D. santomea, but no mitochondrial or morphological character distinguish Mayotte flies from the mainland. This result indicates that physiological and behavioral traits may evolve faster than morphology at the early stages of speciation. Based on these differences, the Mayotte population is designated as a new subspecies, Drosophila yakuba mayottensis subsp. nov., and its strong potential in understanding the genetics of speciation and plant-insect interactions is discussed.

  19. Ecological validity and the study of publics: The case for organic public engagement methods.

    PubMed

    Gehrke, Pat J

    2014-01-01

    This essay argues for a method of public engagement grounded in the criteria of ecological validity. Motivated by what Hammersly called the responsibility that comes with intellectual authority: "to seek, as far as possible, to ensure the validity of their conclusions and to participate in rational debate about those conclusions" (1993: 29), organic public engagement follows the empirical turn in citizenship theory and in rhetorical studies of actually existing publics. Rather than shaping citizens into either the compliant subjects of the cynical view or the deliberatively disciplined subjects of the idealist view, organic public engagement instead takes Asen's advice that "we should ask: how do people enact citizenship?" (2004: 191). In short, organic engagement methods engage publics in the places where they already exist and through those discourses and social practices by which they enact their status as publics. Such engagements can generate practical middle-range theories that facilitate future actions and decisions that are attentive to the local ecologies of diverse publics.

  20. Incorporating ecological data and associated uncertainty in bioaccumulation modeling: methodology development and case study.

    PubMed

    De Laender, Frederik; Van Oevelen, Dick; Middelburg, Jack J; Soetaert, Karline

    2009-04-01

    Bioaccumulation models predict internal concentrations of hydrophobic chemicals by incorporating key gain/loss processes reflecting the ecology of the exposed species and the characteristics of the chemical. Here, we propose a new methodology that uses ecological data and the principle of mass balance in food webs to estimate bioaccumulation in food webs. To this end, we combine linear inverse models (LIMs) that estimate food web flows based on mass balance with a mechanistic bioaccumulation model (OMEGA). In a case study we show that uncertainty ranges on bioaccumulation predictions were on average estimated a factor of 4 lower by LIM-OMEGA than by an OMEGA application that does not consider mass balance within food webs, most notably for chemicals with log Kow > 5, reflecting an increasing importance of uptake through food ingestion for those chemicals. Ranges of internal concentrations predicted by LIM-OMEGA were smaller in enclosures with fish, as strong predation pressure from the latter on mesozooplankton constrains food web flows and thus bioaccumulation.

  1. Daily emotional dynamics in depressed youth: a cell phone ecological momentary assessment study.

    PubMed

    Silk, Jennifer S; Forbes, Erika E; Whalen, Diana J; Jakubcak, Jennifer L; Thompson, Wesley K; Ryan, Neal D; Axelson, David A; Birmaher, Boris; Dahl, Ronald E

    2011-10-01

    This study used a new cell phone ecological momentary assessment approach to investigate daily emotional dynamics in 47 youths with major depressive disorder (MDD) and 32 no-psychopathology controls (CON) (ages 7-17 years). Information about emotional experience in the natural environment was obtained using answer-only cell phones, while MDD youths received an 8-week course of cognitive behavioral therapy and/or psychopharmacological treatment. Compared with CON youths, MDD youths reported more intense and labile global negative affect; greater sadness, anger, and nervousness; and a lower ratio of positive to negative affect. These differences increased with pubertal maturation. MDD youths spent more time alone and less time with their families than CON youths. Although differences in emotional experiences were found across social contexts, MDD youths were more negative than CON youths in all contexts examined. As the MDD participants progressed through treatment, diagnostic group differences in the intensity and lability of negative affect decreased, but there were no changes in the ratio of positive to negative affect or in measures of social context. We discuss methodological innovations and advantages of this approach, including improved ecological validity and access to information about variability in emotions, change in emotions over time, the balance of positive and negative emotions, and the social context of emotional experience.

  2. Sub-federal ecological modernization: A case study of Colorado's new energy economy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giannakouros, Stratis

    European nations have often employed policies of explicit government intervention as a preferred means of addressing environmental and economic challenges. These policies have ranged from grey industrial policies focused solely on industrial growth, competitiveness and innovation to policies of stronger ecological modernization, which seek to align industrial interests with environmental protection. In recent years these policies have been mobilized to address the threat of climate change and promote environmental innovation. While some US Administrations have similarly recognized the need to address these challenges, the particular historical and political institutional dynamics of the US have meant that explicit government intervention has been eschewed in favor of more indirect strategies when dealing with economic and environmental challenges. This is evident in the rise of sub-federal policies at the level of US states. Supported by federal laboratories and public research, US states have adopted policies that look very much like sub-federal versions of industrial or ecological modernization policy. This thesis uses the Colorado case to highlight the importance of sub-federal institutions in addressing environmental and economic challenges in the US and explore its similarities to, and differences from, European approaches. To achieve this goal it first develops an analytical scheme within which to place policy initiatives on a continuum from grey industrial policy to strong ecological modernization policy by identifying key institutions that are influential in each policy type. This analytical scheme is then applied to the transitional renewable energy policy period from 2004-2012 in the state of Colorado. This period starts with the adoption of a renewable energy portfolio in 2004 and includes the `new energy economy' period from 2007-2010 as well as the years since. Looking at three key turning points this paper interprets the `new energy economy' strategy

  3. Association between payments from manufacturers of pharmaceuticals to physicians and regional prescribing: cross sectional ecological study

    PubMed Central

    Agrawal, Shantanu; King, Marissa; Venkatesh, Arjun K; Krumholz, Harlan M; McKee, Douglas; Brown, Douglas; Ross, Joseph S

    2016-01-01

    greater prescribing of marketed drugs than payments for food and beverages or educational materials (484 v 110, P<0.001). Conclusions and study limitations Payments by the manufacturers of pharmaceuticals to physicians were associated with greater regional prescribing of marketed drugs among Medicare Part D beneficiaries. Payments to specialists and payments for speaker and consulting fees were predominantly associated with greater regional prescribing of marketed drugs than payments to non-specialists or payments for food and beverages, gifts, or educational materials. As a cross sectional, ecological study, we cannot prove causation between payments to physicians and increased prescribing. Furthermore, our findings should be interpreted only at the regional level. Our study is limited to prescribing by physicians and the two drug classes studied. PMID:27540015

  4. Giving Back: Collaborations with Others in Ecological Studies on the Nevada National Security Site - 13058

    SciTech Connect

    Wade, Scott A.; Knapp, Kathryn S.; Wills, Cathy A.

    2013-07-01

    Formerly named the Nevada Test Site, the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS) was the historical site for nuclear weapons testing from the 1950's to the early 1990's. The site was renamed in 2010 to reflect the diversity of nuclear, energy, and homeland security activities now conducted at the site. Biological and ecological programs and research have been conducted on the site for decades to address the impacts of radiation and to take advantage of the relatively undisturbed and isolated lands for gathering basic information on the occurrence and distribution of native plants and animals. Currently, the Office of the Assistant Manager for Environmental Management of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), National Nuclear Security Administration Nevada Site Office (NNSA/NSO) oversees the radiological biota monitoring and ecological compliance programs on the NNSS. The top priority of these programs are compliance with federal and state regulations. They focus on performing radiological dose assessments for the public who reside near the NNSS and for populations of plants and animals on the NNSS and in protecting important species and habitat from direct impacts of mission activities. The NNSS serves as an invaluable outdoor laboratory. The geographic and ecological diversity of the site offers researchers many opportunities to study human influences on ecosystems. NNSA/NSO has pursued collaborations with outside agencies and organizations to be able to conduct programs and studies that enhance radiological biota monitoring and ecosystem preservation when budgets are restrictive, as well as to provide valuable scientific information to the human health and natural resource communities at large. NNSA/NSO is using one current collaborative study to better assess the potential dose to the off-site public from the ingestion of game animals, the most realistic pathway for off-site public exposure at this time from radionuclide contamination on the NNSS. A second

  5. Giving Back: Collaborations with Others in Ecological Studies on the Nevada National Security Site

    SciTech Connect

    Scott A. Wade; Kathryn S. Knapp; Cathy A. Wills

    2013-02-24

    Formerly named the Nevada Test Site, the Nevada National Security Site (NNSS) was the historical site for nuclear weapons testing from the 1950s to the early 1990s. The site was renamed in 2010 to reflect the diversity of nuclear, energy, and homeland security activities now conducted at the site. Biological and ecological programs and research have been conducted on the site for decades to address the impacts of radiation and to take advantage of the relatively undisturbed and isolated lands for gathering basic information on the occurrence and distribution of native plants and animals. Currently, the Office of the Assistant Manager for Environmental Management of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), National Nuclear Security Administration Nevada Site Office (NNSA/NSO) oversees the radiological biota monitoring and ecological compliance programs on the NNSS. The top priority of these programs are compliance with federal and state regulations. They focus on performing radiological dose assessments for the public who reside near the NNSS and for populations of plants and animals on the NNSS and in protecting important species and habitat from direct impacts of mission activities. The NNSS serves as an invaluable outdoor laboratory. The geographic and ecological diversity of the site offers researchers many opportunities to study human influences on ecosystems. NNSA/NSO has pursued collaborations with outside agencies and organizations to be able to conduct programs and studies that enhance radiological biota monitoring and ecosystem preservation when budgets are restrictive, as well as to provide valuable scientific information to the human health and natural resource communities at large. NNSA/NSO is using one current collaborative study to better assess the potential dose to the off-site public from the ingestion of game animals, the most realistic pathway for off-site public exposure at this time from radionuclide contamination on the NNSS. A second

  6. Ecology and Energy Action Pack.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McDonald's Corp., Oak Brook, IL.

    One of five McDonald's Action Packs, these elementary school-level instructional materials are for use as an introduction to existing units of study, supplements to a textbook, or a source of special projects for environmental education. Contents include these six units: Make Your Own Ecology Mini-spinner, Let's Look at a Food Chain, Drip the…

  7. Methodological approaches for studying the microbial ecology of drinking water distribution systems.

    PubMed

    Douterelo, Isabel; Boxall, Joby B; Deines, Peter; Sekar, Raju; Fish, Katherine E; Biggs, Catherine A

    2014-11-15

    The study of the microbial ecology of drinking water distribution systems (DWDS) has traditionally been based on culturing organisms from bulk water samples. The development and application of molecular methods has supplied new tools for examining the microbial diversity and activity of environmental samples, yielding new insights into the microbial community and its diversity within these engineered ecosystems. In this review, the currently available methods and emerging approaches for characterising microbial communities, including both planktonic and biofilm ways of life, are critically evaluated. The study of biofilms is considered particularly important as it plays a critical role in the processes and interactions occurring at the pipe wall and bulk water interface. The advantages, limitations and usefulness of methods that can be used to detect and assess microbial abundance, community composition and function are discussed in a DWDS context. This review will assist hydraulic engineers and microbial ecologists in choosing the most appropriate tools to assess drinking water microbiology and related aspects.

  8. Distribution of Brazilian dermatologists according to geographic location, population and HDI of municipalities: an ecological study*

    PubMed Central

    Schmitt, Juliano Vilaverde; Miot, Hélio Amante

    2014-01-01

    This study investigated the geographic distribution of dermatologists in Brazilian municipalities in relation to the population, regions of the country and human development index. We conducted an ecological study based on data from the 2010 census, the 2010 human development index, and the records of the Brazilian Society of Dermatology. 5565 municipalities and 6718 dermatologists were surveyed. Only 504 (9.1%) municipalities had dermatologists, and accounted for 56.2% of the Brazilian population. The smallest population size and lowest HDI rate that best discriminated municipalities that did not have dermatologists were found to be 28,000 and 0.71, respectively. The average population density of dermatologists in cities was 1/23.000 inhabitants, and variations were independently associated with the HDI, the population of the municipalities and the region of the country. PMID:25387516

  9. Spatial ecology across scales.

    PubMed

    Hastings, Alan; Petrovskii, Sergei; Morozov, Andrew

    2011-04-23

    The international conference 'Models in population dynamics and ecology 2010: animal movement, dispersal and spatial ecology' took place at the University of Leicester, UK, on 1-3 September 2010, focusing on mathematical approaches to spatial population dynamics and emphasizing cross-scale issues. Exciting new developments in scaling up from individual level movement to descriptions of this movement at the macroscopic level highlighted the importance of mechanistic approaches, with different descriptions at the microscopic level leading to different ecological outcomes. At higher levels of organization, different macroscopic descriptions of movement also led to different properties at the ecosystem and larger scales. New developments from Levy flight descriptions to the incorporation of new methods from physics and elsewhere are revitalizing research in spatial ecology, which will both increase understanding of fundamental ecological processes and lead to tools for better management.

  10. [Ecological footprint and available ecological capacity in Chongqing region].

    PubMed

    Sun, Fan; Mong, Linbing

    2005-07-01

    Based on the statistical data of Chongqing, the ecological footprint of Chongqing was calculated in this paper. The results showed that the per capita ecological footprint was 1.653566 hm2, per capita ecological capacity was 0.280393 hm2, and ecological surplus of deficit was 1.373173 hm2. The per capita ecological footprint was 0.5335 hm2 (47.64%) higher but the per capita ecological capacity was 0.5196 hm2 (64.95%) lower, and the ecological surplus of deficit was about 3.43 times of the average national level. These results showed that the ecological footprint of Chongqing was beyond the available ecological capacity, and its social and economic development was not sustainable. The strategies on reducing ecological deficit in this region, such as reducing ecosystem population, increasing public finance income, and controlling environmental pollution, were also put forward.

  11. An epidemiological and ecological study of human alveolar echinococcosis transmission in south Gansu, China.

    PubMed

    Craig, P S; Giraudoux, P; Shi, D; Bartholomot, B; Barnish, G; Delattre, P; Quere, J P; Harraga, S; Bao, G; Wang, Y; Lu, F; Ito, A; Vuitton, D A

    2000-11-02

    Human alveolar echinococcosis (AE) is usually a rare, highly pathogenic zoonotic disease, transmitted across the northern hemisphere between fox and rodent hosts. In China the first cases were described in 1965; however very few epidemiological studies have been undertaken since. Following identification in 1991 of a serious focus of human AE in south Gansu province, detailed village-based community and ecological studies were carried out between 1994 and 1997. Hepatic ultrasound mass screening with serological testing (five tests) identified 84/2482 new AE cases (3%). An overall prevalence of 4.1% (135/3331) was recorded for the area when previous cases were also included. Based on a seropositive result only, without an ultrasound scan indication, no additional AE cases were identified. Of the evolutive AE cases, 96% were seropositive in at least one test, while up 15-20% of individuals who exhibited hepatic calcified lesions and 12-15% exhibiting hepatic nodular lesions were seropositive for specific Em2 or Em18 antibodies. Village (n=31) human AE prevalence rates varied from 0 to 15.8%. Questionnaire analysis indicated that total number of dogs owned over a period was a risk factor (P<0.006), but not a history of red fox hunting (P>0.6). Rodent ecology studies revealed an association between density indices of voles (Microtus limnophilus) and village AE prevalence rates, on the one hand, and village landscape characterised by a ratio of scrub/grassland to total area above 50% (P<0.005). Long-term transmission of Echinococcus multilocularis and risk of zoonotic infection of south Gansu farmers may be related ultimately to a process of deforestation driven by agriculture. This in turn probably results in creation of optimal peri-domestic habitats for rodents that serve as intermediate host species (such as M. limnophilus) and subsequent development of a peri-domestic cycle involving dogs.

  12. Studying the evolutionary ecology of cognition in the wild: a review of practical and conceptual challenges.

    PubMed

    Morand-Ferron, Julie; Cole, Ella F; Quinn, John L

    2016-05-01

    Cognition is defined as the processes by which animals collect, retain and use information from their environment to guide their behaviour. Thus cognition is essential in a wide range of behaviours, including foraging, avoiding predators and mating. Despite this pivotal role, the evolutionary processes shaping variation in cognitive performance among individuals in wild populations remain very poorly understood. Selection experiments in captivity suggest that cognitive traits can have substantial heritability and can undergo rapid evolution. However only a handful of studies have attempted to explore how cognition influences life-history variation and fitness in the wild, and direct evidence for the action of natural or sexual selection on cognition is still lacking, reasons for which are diverse. Here we review the current literature with a view to: (i) highlighting the key practical and conceptual challenges faced by the field; (ii) describing how to define and measure cognitive traits in natural populations, and suggesting which species, populations and cognitive traits might be examined to greatest effect; emphasis is placed on selecting traits that are linked to functional behaviour; (iii) discussing how to deal with confounding factors such as personality and motivation in field as well as captive studies; (iv) describing how to measure and interpret relationships between cognitive performance, functional behaviour and fitness, offering some suggestions as to when and what kind of selection might be predicted; and (v) showing how an evolutionary ecological framework, more generally, along with innovative technologies has the potential to revolutionise the study of cognition in the wild. We conclude that the evolutionary ecology of cognition in wild populations is a rapidly expanding interdisciplinary field providing many opportunities for advancing the understanding of how cognitive abilities have evolved.

  13. Testing low cost OEM CO2 sensors for outdoor ecological studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Macintyre, C. M.; Risk, D. A.

    2011-12-01

    IR (Infrared) gas sensors are used extensively in CO2 research but price and power requirement often limits low-cost distributed sensing. In the past three years, sensors have been introduced to the industrial market at prices as low as $100 US for air-handling and automotive application. These inexpensive sensors are small in size, and have low power demand making them potentially ideal for low-cost distributed deployments. However, the sensors are only tested and calibrated for indoor use and for industrial standards and may not show their true potential for outdoor ecological studies. This poster summarizes the results of a sensor inter-comparison test, to document functionality, response time, electrical noise, precision, and accuracy, under varying moistures and temperatures broadly representative of a wide range of outdoor settings. The three selected sensors were placed in a closed loop system with a valving system using a LiCor Li-7000 as reference, controlled by a CR1000 datalogger that controlled CO2 and moisture concentrations content within the cell on the basis of LiCor readings. To achieve different temperatures, the tests were repeated at room temperature, inside a freezer (-18°C) and incubator (40°C). The tests involved repeatedly stepping the sensors from 2000 ppm CO2 to 400 ppm CO2 in 200 ppm or 400 ppm increments, at various moisture contents, and under the various temperature regimes. Vaisala 222 and 343 sensors were also part of the test group as comparators, as both are used widely in ecological research. The OEM sensors displayed good linearity, fast response time, and results comparable to Vaisala probes. In most cases the sensors performed beyond our expectations with notably less electrical noise than the Vaisala sensors and excellent power thriftiness. Some sensors showed better response to extreme moisture and temperature conditions. Provided that suitable protective embodiments were built around them, and that they are deployed in an

  14. The fourth level of social structure in a multi-level society: ecological and social functions of clans in hamadryas baboons.

    PubMed

    Schreier, Amy L; Swedell, Larissa

    2009-11-01

    Hamadryas baboons are known for their complex, multi-level social structure consisting of troops, bands, and one-male units (OMUs) [Kummer, 1968. Social organization of hamadryas baboons. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press. 189p]. Abegglen [1984. On socialization in hamadryas baboons: a field study. Lewisburg, PA: Bucknell University Press. 207p.] observed a fourth level of social structure comprising several OMUs that rested near one another on sleeping cliffs, traveled most closely together during daily foraging, and sometimes traveled as subgroups independently from the rest of the band. Abegglen called these associations "clans" and suggested that they consisted of related males. Here we confirm the existence of clans in a second wild hamadryas population, a band of about 200 baboons at the Filoha site in lowland Ethiopia. During all-day follows from December 1997 through September 1998 and March 2005 through February 2006, data were collected on activity patterns, social interactions, nearest neighbors, band fissions, and takeovers. Association indices were computed for each dyad of leader males, and results of cluster analyses indicated that in each of the two observation periods this band comprised two large clans ranging in size from 7 to 13 OMUs. All band fissions occurred along clan lines, and most takeovers involved the transfer of females within the same clan. Our results support the notion that clans provide an additional level of flexibility to deal with the sparse distribution of resources in hamadryas habitats. The large clan sizes at Filoha may simply be the largest size that the band can split into and still obtain enough food during periods of food scarcity. Our results also suggest that both male and female relationships play a role in the social cohesion of clans and that males exchange females within clans but not between them.

  15. Differentiation of bacterial feeding nematodes in soil ecological studies by means of arbitrarily primed PCR

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Van Der Knaap, Esther; Rodriguez, Russell J.; Freckman, Diana W.

    1993-01-01

    Arbitrarily-primed polymerase chain reaction (ap-PCR) was used to differentiate closely related bacterial-feeding nematodes of the genera: Caenorhabditis, Acrobeloides, Cephalobus and Zeldia. Average percentage similarity of bands generated by ap-PCR with seven different primers between 14 isolates of Caenorhabditis elegans was ⪢ 90%, whereas between C. elegans, C. briggsae and C. remanei similarity was < 20%. Based on intra- and inter-specific similarity between Caenorhabditis isolates, analysis of Acrobeloides, Cephalobus and Zeldia isolates revealed either similar or different genotypes. Distinct genotypes were verified by morphological analyses. In addition, the genotypes obtained from single egg-derived nematode populations were also obtained from ap-PCR analysis of single worms. Due to the difficulty of identification of soil nematodes, the ap-PCR offers potential as a rapid and reliable technique to assess biodiversity. Ap-PCR will make it feasible, for the first time, to study the ecological interactions of unique nematode genotypes in soil habitats.

  16. Calling for an ecological approach to studying climate change and infectious diseases

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Lafferty, Kevin D.

    2009-01-01

    My Concepts and Synthesis paper (Lafferty 2009),which inspired this Forum, echoed the premise that earlyreviews about climate change exaggerated claims thatinfectious diseases will increase in the future (Randolph2009). The paper sparked five well-reasoned commen-taries from ecologists with considerable expertise ininfectious diseases (Dobson 2009, Harvell et al. 2009,Ostfeld 2009, Pascual and Bouma 2009, Randolph2009). These reviews illustrate several examples andcase studies which corr elate i ncreases in infectiousdisease with existing climate variation, though alterna-tive explanations exist for many of these patterns(Dobson 2009, Harvell et al. 2009, Ostfeld 2009, Pascualand Bouma 2009, Randolph 2009). A common messageis that an ecological approach is increasingly relevant tothe challenging topic of infectious disease.

  17. Quantifying Competitive Exclusion and Competitive Release in Ecological Communities: A Conceptual Framework and a Case Study

    PubMed Central

    Henkin, Zalmen; Kadmon, Ronen

    2016-01-01

    A fundamental notion in community ecology is that local species diversity reflects some balance between the contrasting forces of competitive exclusion and competitive release. Quantifying this balance is not trivial, and requires data on the magnitude of both processes in the same system, as well as appropriate methodology to integrate and interpret such data. Here we present a novel framework for empirical studies of the balance between competitive exclusion and competitive release and demonstrate its applicability using data from a Mediterranean annual grassland where grazing is a major mechanism of competitive release. Empirical data on the balance between competitive exclusion and competitive release are crucial for understanding observed patterns of variation in local species diversity and the proposed approach provides a simple framework for the collection, interpretation, and synthesis of such data. PMID:27536943

  18. Quantifying Competitive Exclusion and Competitive Release in Ecological Communities: A Conceptual Framework and a Case Study.

    PubMed

    Segre, Hila; DeMalach, Niv; Henkin, Zalmen; Kadmon, Ronen

    2016-01-01

    A fundamental notion in community ecology is that local species diversity reflects some balance between the contrasting forces of competitive exclusion and competitive release. Quantifying this balance is not trivial, and requires data on the magnitude of both processes in the same system, as well as appropriate methodology to integrate and interpret such data. Here we present a novel framework for empirical studies of the balance between competitive exclusion and competitive release and demonstrate its applicability using data from a Mediterranean annual grassland where grazing is a major mechanism of competitive release. Empirical data on the balance between competitive exclusion and competitive release are crucial for understanding observed patterns of variation in local species diversity and the proposed approach provides a simple framework for the collection, interpretation, and synthesis of such data.

  19. Ecological consequences of biological invasions: three invertebrate case studies in the north-eastern Baltic Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kotta, Jonne; Kotta, Ilmar; Simm, Mart; Lankov, Ain; Lauringson, Velda; Põllumäe, Arno; Ojaveer, Henn

    2006-05-01

    Population dynamics and ecological impacts of the cirriped Balanus improvisus, the polychaete Marenzelleria neglecta and the cladoceran Cercopagis pengoi were investigated in the north-eastern Baltic Sea. After an increase during the first decade of invasion, the density of M. neglecta and C. pengoi declined afterwards. The studied abiotic environmental variables did not explain the interannual variability in the seasonal cycles of M. neglecta and C. pengoi indicating that the species are at their initial phase of invasion. The population dynamics of B. improvisus was best described by water temperature. B. improvisus promoted the growth of the green alga Enteromorpha intestinalis. M. neglecta enhanced the content of sediment chlorophyll a and reduced growth and survival of the polychaete Hediste diversicolor and growth of the amphipod Monoporeia affinis. Concurrent with the invasion of C. pengoi the abundance of small-sized cladocerans declined, especially above the thermocline. C. pengoi had become an important food for nine-spined stickleback, bleak, herring and smelt.

  20. Mood states preceding and following compulsive buying episodes: an ecological momentary assessment study.

    PubMed

    Müller, Astrid; Mitchell, James E; Crosby, Ross D; Cao, Li; Johnson, Joshua; Claes, Laurence; de Zwaan, Martina

    2012-12-30

    This study examined the extent to which patterns of mood and daily stress experienced by individuals with compulsive buying (CB) are associated with CB episodes by using Ecological Momentary Assessment. The comparison of mood and the impact of daily stress on days on which CB occurred to those days on which CB episodes did not occur did not reveal any significant differences. Within-day analysis indicated that negative affect increased significantly and positive affect decreased significantly prior to a CB episode. There was also evidence of a significant decrease in negative affect following a CB episode. Positive affect did not change significantly after a CB episode. The findings suggest that CB episodes hold negative reinforcing properties for individuals with CB. Treatment of patients with CB should focus on functional assessment of the affective antecedents and consequences of CB episodes and the identification of alternative, more functional behaviors to deal with these affective states.

  1. Sporadic cases of community acquired legionnaires' disease: an ecological study to identify new sources of contamination

    PubMed Central

    Che, D; Decludt, B; Campese, C; Desenclos, J

    2003-01-01

    Study objective: To explore the relation between incidence of sporadic and community acquired legionnaires' disease and exposure to potentially contaminated industrial aerosols. Design: Geographical ecological approach using the postcode as the statistical unit. A multivariate Poisson regression model was used to model the relation between exposure to industrial aerosols and legionnaires' disease. Setting: Metropolitan France. Main results: More than 1000 sources of industrial exposure (aerosol and plume of smoke) were identified in 42 French departments. After adjusting for confounding factors, there was a statistically increased incidence of legionnaires' disease in postcodes with plume of smoke in comparison with postcodes without (RR=1.45, 95% CI=1.12 to 1.87), and in postcodes with more than one aerosol in comparison with postcodes without (RR=1.37, 95% CI=1.04 to 1.79). Conclusion: These findings highlight that any industrial systems generating water aerosols should be regarded as potential sources of contamination for legionnaires' disease. PMID:12775798

  2. Ecological survey for the siting of the Mixed and Low-Level Waste Treatment Facility and the Idaho Waste Processing Facility

    SciTech Connect

    Hoskinson, R.L.

    1994-05-01

    This report summarizes the results of field ecological surveys conducted by the Center for Integrated Environmental Technologies (CIET) on the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory (INEL) at four candidate locations for the siting of the Mixed and Low-Level Waste Treatment Facility (MLLWTF) and the Idaho Waste Processing Facility (IWPF). The purpose of these surveys was to comply with all Federal laws and Executive Orders to identify and evaluate any potential environmental impacts because of the project. The boundaries of the candidate location were marked with blaze-orange lath survey marker stakes by the project management. Global Positioning System (GPS) measurements of the marker stakes were made, and input to the Arc/Info{reg_sign} geographic information system (GIS). Field surveys were conducted to assess any potential impact to any important species, important habitats, and to any environmental study areas. The GIS location data was overlayed onto the INEL vegetation map and an analysis of vegetation classes on the locations was done. Results of the field surveys indicate use of Candidate Location {number_sign}1 by pygmy rabbits (Sylvilagus idahoensis) and expected use by them of Candidate Locations {number_sign}3 and {number_sign}9. Pygmy rabbits are categorized as a C2 species by the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). Two other C2 species, the ferruginous hawk (Buteo regalis) and the loggerhead shrike (Lanius ludovicianus) would also be expected to frequent the candidate locations. Candidate Location {number_sign}5 at the north end of the INEL is in the winter range of a large number of pronghorn antelope (Antilocapra americana).

  3. [Study on medicinal plant allelopathy and soil sickness based on ecological niche].

    PubMed

    Sun, Hao; Huang, Lu-ming; Huang, Lu-qi; Guo, Lan-ping; Zhou, Jie; Lv, Dong-mei; Zeng, Yan

    2008-09-01

    Based on the conception and theory of ecological niche, authors analyzed the cause of the allelopathy and soil sickness of medicinal plants and the relationship between them. Methods to resolve problems in the cultivating medicinal plant was found, that is to construct the ecological niche based on allelopathy theory and avoid the soil sickness.

  4. Writing to Learn Ecology: A Study of Three Populations of College Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Balgopal, Meena M.; Wallace, Alison M.; Dahlberg, Steven

    2012-01-01

    Being an ecologically literate citizen involves making decisions that are based on ecological knowledge and accepting responsibility for personal actions. Using writing-to-learn activities in college science courses, we asked students to consider personal dilemmas that they or others might have in response to how human choices can impact coastal…

  5. Data Explorations in Ecology: Salt Pollution as a Case Study for Teaching Data Literacy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harris, Cornelia; Berkowitz, Alan R.; Alvarado, Angelita

    2012-01-01

    Does working with first- and second-hand ecological data improve students' knowledge of ecological ideas, motivation and engagement in science, data exploration, and citizenship skills (students' ability to make informed decisions)? We have been exploring this question with high school science teachers in New York State for the past year using a…

  6. A Case Study: Using Authentic Scientific Data for Teaching and Learning of Ecology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wyner, Yael

    2013-01-01

    This article describes a culminating assignment for students enrolled in a human ecology course in a Masters in Science Education program. The goal of this assignment was for students to use published scientific data to link daily life, human impact, and sustainability to ecological function. This activity required students to consider the…

  7. Applications of contaminant fate and bioaccumulation models in assessing ecological risks of chemicals: A case study for gasoline hydrocarbons

    SciTech Connect

    MacLeod, Matthew; McKone, Thomas E.; Foster, Karen L.; Maddalena, Randy L.; Parkerton, Thomas F.; Mackay, Don

    2004-02-01

    Mass balance models of chemical fate and transport can be applied in ecological risk assessments for quantitative estimation of concentrations in air, water, soil and sediment. These concentrations can, in turn, be used to estimate organism exposures and ultimately internal tissue concentrations that can be compared to mode-of-action-based critical body residues that correspond to toxic effects. From this comparison, risks to the exposed organism can be evaluated. To illustrate the practical utility of fate models in ecological risk assessments of commercial products, the EQC model and a simple screening level biouptake model including three organisms, (a bird, a mammal and a fish) is applied to gasoline. In this analysis, gasoline is divided into 24 components or ''blocks'' with similar environmental fate properties that are assumed to elicit ecotoxicity via a narcotic mode of action. Results demonstrate that differences in chemical properties and mode of entry into the environment lead to profound differences in the efficiency of transport from emission to target biota. We discuss the implications of these results and insights gained into the regional fate and ecological risks associated with gasoline. This approach is particularly suitable for assessing mixtures of components that have similar modes of action. We conclude that the model-based methodologies presented are widely applicable for screening level ecological risk assessments that support effective chemicals management.

  8. Pressure studies of deep levels in semiconductors

    SciTech Connect

    Samara, G.A.

    1989-01-01

    The effects of pressure on the energetics and kinetics of electron emission and capture processes by several important deep levels in Si are discussed. The results yield the first quantitative measures of the breathing mode lattice relaxations accompanying these processes. 2 refs., 1 fig.

  9. [Results of the studies on radiation ecology and radiation biology at the Institute of Biology of Komi Science Center of Ural division of Russian Academy of Science (on 40th anniversary of the Department of Radiation Ecology)].

    PubMed

    Taskaev, A I; Kudiasheva, A G; Popova, O N; Materiĭ, L D; Shuktomova, I I; Frolova, N P; Kozubov, G M; Zaĭnullin, V G; Ermakova, O V; Rakin, A O; Bashlykova, L A

    2000-01-01

    Information about the foundation and history of the Radiation Ecology Department and results of the researches on the effect of increased background radiation level on plant and animal populations, migration of radionuclides in natural biocoenosies with increased radiation level are presented.

  10. Impacts of road network expansion on landscape ecological risk in a megacity, China: A case study of Beijing.

    PubMed

    Mo, Wenbo; Wang, Yong; Zhang, Yingxue; Zhuang, Dafang

    2017-01-01

    Road networks affect the spatial structure of urban landscapes, and with continuous expansion, it will also exert more widespread influences on the regional ecological environment. With the support of geographic information system (GIS) technology, based on the application of various spatial analysis methods, this study analyzed the spatiotemporal changes of road networks and landscape ecological risk in the research area of Beijing to explore the impacts of road network expansion on ecological risk in the urban landscape. The results showed the following: 1) In the dynamic processes of change in the overall landscape pattern, the changing differences in landscape indices of various landscape types were obvious and were primarily related to land-use type. 2) For the changes in a time series, the expansion of the road kernel area was consistent with the extension of the sub-low-risk area in the urban center, but some differences were observed during different stages of development. 3) For the spatial position, the expanding changes in the road kernel area were consistent with the grade changes of the urban central ecological risk, primarily because both had a certain spatial correlation with the expressways. 4) The influence of road network expansion on the ecological risk in the study area had obvious spatial differences, which may be closely associated with the distribution of ecosystem types.

  11. Ground level environmental protein concentrations in various ecuadorian environments: potential uses of aerosolized protein for ecological research

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Staton, Sarah J.R.; Woodward, Andrea; Castillo, Josemar A.; Swing, Kelly; Hayes, Mark A.

    2014-01-01

    Large quantities of free protein in the environment and other bioaerosols are ubiquitous throughout terrestrial ground level environments and may be integrative indicators of ecosystem status. Samples of ground level bioaerosols were collected from various ecosystems throughout Ecuador, including pristine humid tropical forest (pristine), highly altered secondary humid tropical forest (highly altered), secondary transitional very humid forest (regrowth transitional), and suburban dry montane deforested (suburban deforested). The results explored the sensitivity of localized aerosol protein concentrations to spatial and temporal variations within ecosystems, and their value for assessing environmental change. Ecosystem specific variations in environmental protein concentrations were observed: pristine 0.32 ± 0.09 μg/m3, highly altered 0.07 ± 0.05 μg/m3, regrowth transitional 0.17 ± 0.06 μg/m3, and suburban deforested 0.09 ± 0.04 μg/m3. Additionally, comparisons of intra-environmental differences in seasonal/daily weather (dry season 0.08 ± 0.03 μg/m3 and wet season 0.10 ± 0.04 μg/m3), environmental fragmentation (buffered 0.19 ± 0.06 μg/m3 and edge 0.15 ± 0.06 μg/m3), and sampling height (ground level 0.32 ± 0.09 μg/m3 and 10 m 0.24 ± 0.04 μg/m3) demonstrated the sensitivity of protein concentrations to environmental conditions. Local protein concentrations in altered environments correlated well with satellite-based spectral indices describing vegetation productivity: normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) (r2 = 0.801), net primary production (NPP) (r2 = 0.827), leaf area index (LAI) (r2 = 0.410). Moreover, protein concentrations distinguished the pristine site, which was not differentiated in spectral indices, potentially due to spectral saturation typical of highly vegetated environments. Bioaerosol concentrations represent an inexpensive method to increase understanding of environmental changes, especially in densely vegetated

  12. Soil Microarthropods and Their Relationship to Higher Trophic Levels in the Pedregal de San Angel Ecological Reserve, Mexico

    PubMed Central

    Callejas-Chavero, Alicia; Castaño-Meneses, Gabriela; Razo-González, María; Pérez-Velázquez, Daniela; Palacios-Vargas, José G.; Flores-Martínez, Arturo

    2015-01-01

    Soil fauna is essential for ecosystem dynamics as it is involved in biogeochemical processes, promotes nutrient availability, and affects the animal communities associated with plants. In this study, we examine the possible relationship between the soil microarthropod community on foliage production and quality of the shrub Pittocaulon praecox. We also examine the arthropods associated to its foliage, particularly the size of the main herbivores and of their natural enemies, at two sites with contrasting vegetation cover and productivity. The diversity of soil microarthropods was assessed from soil samples collected monthly under P. praecox individuals over 13 mo. Specimens collected were identified to species or morphospecies. Shrub foliage productivity was evaluated through the amount of litter produced. Resource quality was assessed by the mean content (percentage by weight) of N, C, S, and P of 30 leaves from each shrub. The mean size of herbivores and their natural enemies were determined by measuring 20 adult specimens of each of the most abundant species. We found a higher species richness of soil microarthropods and foliar arthropods in the open site, although the diversity of foliage arthropods was lower in the closed site. Shrubs growing in the closed site tend to produce more, larger, and nutritionally poorer (lower nitrogen content) leaves than open site. Herbivores and their natural enemies were also larger in the closed site. We found a significant positive relationship between the diversity and species richness of foliar arthropods and the nitrogen content of leaves. In general, species richness and diversity of both the foliar and soil fauna, as well as the size of organisms belonging to higher trophic levels, were affected by vegetation cover and primary productivity at each site. These findings highlight the need to simultaneously consider at least four trophic levels (soil organisms, plants, herbivores, and natural enemies) to better understand

  13. Association of rule of law and health outcomes: an ecological study

    PubMed Central

    Pinzon-Rondon, Angela Maria; Attaran, Amir; Botero, Juan Carlos; Ruiz-Sternberg, Angela Maria

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To explore whether the rule of law is a foundational determinant of health that underlies other socioeconomic, political and cultural factors that have been associated with health outcomes. Setting Global project. Participants Data set of 96 countries, comprising 91% of the global population. Primary and secondary outcome measures The following health indicators, infant mortality rate, maternal mortality rate, life expectancy, and cardiovascular disease and diabetes mortality rate, were included to explore their association with the rule of law. We used a novel Rule of Law Index, gathered from survey sources, in a cross-sectional and ecological design. The Index is based on eight subindices: (1) Constraints on Government Powers; (2) Absence of Corruption; (3) Order and Security; (4) Fundamental Rights; (5) Open Government; (6) Regulatory Enforcement, (7) Civil Justice; and (8) Criminal Justice. Results The rule of law showed an independent association with infant mortality rate, maternal mortality rate, life expectancy, and cardiovascular disease and diabetes mortality rate, after adjusting for the countries’ level of per capita income, their expenditures in health, their level of political and civil freedom, their Gini measure of inequality and women's status (p<0.05). Rule of law remained significant in all the multivariate models, and the following adjustment for potential confounders remained robust for at least one or more of the health outcomes across all eight subindices of the rule of law. Findings show that the higher the country's level of adherence to the rule of law, the better the health of the population. Conclusions It is necessary to start considering the country's adherence to the rule of law as a foundational determinant of health. Health advocates should consider the improvement of rule of law as a tool to improve population health. Conversely, lack of progress in rule of law may constitute a structural barrier to health improvement

  14. Ecological studies related to construction of the Defense Waste Processing Facility on the Savannah River Site

    SciTech Connect

    Pechmann, J.H.K.; Scott, D.E.; McGregor, J.H.; Estes, R.A.; Chazal, A.C.

    1993-02-01

    The Defense Waste Processing Facility (DWPF) was built on the Savannah River Site (SRS) during the mid-1980's. The Savannah River Ecology Laboratory (SREL) has completed 12 years of ecological studies related to the construction of the DWPF complex. Prior to construction, the 600-acre site (S-Area) contained a Carolina bay and the headwaters of a stream. Research conducted by the SREL has focused primarily on four questions related to these wetlands: (1) Prior to construction, what fauna and flora were present at the DWPF site and at similar, yet undisturbed, alternative sites (2) By comparing the Carolina bay at the DWPF site (Sun Bay) with an undisturbed control Carolina bay (Rainbow Bay), what effect is construction having on the organisms that inhabited the DWPF site (3) By comparing control streams with streams on the periphery of the DWPF site, what effect is construction having on the peripheral streams (4) How effective have efforts been to lessen the impacts of construction, both with respect to erosion control measures and the construction of refuge ponds'' as alternative breeding sites for amphibians that formerly bred at Sun Bay Through the long-term census-taking of biota at the DWPF site and Rainbow Bay, SREL has begun to evaluate the impact of construction on the biota and the effectiveness of mitigation efforts. Similarly, the effects of erosion from the DWPF site on the water quality of S-Area peripheral streams are being assessed. This research provides supporting data relevant to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, the Endangered Species Act of 1973, Executive Orders 11988 (Floodplain Management) and 11990 (Protection of Wetlands), and United States Department of Energy (DOE) Guidelines for Compliance with Floodplain/Wetland Environmental Review Requirements (10CFR1022).

  15. Morphological, hydrological, biogeochemical and ecological changes and challenges in river restoration - the Thur River case study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schirmer, M.; Luster, J.; Linde, N.; Perona, P.; Mitchell, E. A. D.; Barry, D. A.; Hollender, J.; Cirpka, O. A.; Schneider, P.; Vogt, T.; Radny, D.; Durisch-Kaiser, E.

    2014-06-01

    River restoration can enhance river dynamics, environmental heterogeneity and biodiversity, but the underlying processes governing the dynamic changes need to be understood to ensure that restoration projects meet their goals, and adverse effects are prevented. In particular, we need to comprehend how hydromorphological variability quantitatively relates to ecosystem functioning and services, biodiversity as well as ground- and surface water quality in restored river corridors. This involves (i) physical processes and structural properties, determining erosion and sedimentation, as well as solute and heat transport behavior in surface water and within the subsurface; (ii) biogeochemical processes and characteristics, including the turnover of nutrients and natural water constituents; and (iii) ecological processes and indicators related to biodiversity and ecological functioning. All these aspects are interlinked, requiring an interdisciplinary investigation approach. Here, we present an overview of the recently completed RECORD (REstored CORridor Dynamics) project in which we combined physical, chemical, and biological observations with modeling at a restored river corridor of the perialpine Thur River in Switzerland. Our results show that river restoration, beyond inducing morphologic changes that reshape the river bed and banks, triggered complex spatial patterns of bank infiltration, and affected habitat type, biotic communities and biogeochemical processes. We adopted an interdisciplinary approach of monitoring the continuing changes due to restoration measures to address the following questions: How stable is the morphological variability established by restoration? Does morphological variability guarantee an improvement in biodiversity? How does morphological variability affect biogeochemical transformations in the river corridor? What are some potential adverse effects of river restoration? How is river restoration influenced by catchment-scale hydraulics

  16. Study on O2-supplying characteristics of Azolla in Controlled Ecological Life Support System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Min; Deng, Sufang; Yang, Youquang; Huang, Yibing; Liu, Zhongzhu

    Azolla has high growth and propagation rate, strong photosynthetic O2-releasing ability and rich nutrient value. It is able to be used as salad-type vegetable, and can also be cultured on wet bed in multi-layer condition. Hence, it possesses a potential functioning as providing O2, fresh vegetable and absorbing CO2 for Controlled Ecological Life Support System in space. In this study, we try to make clear the O2-providing characteristics of Azolla in controlled close chamber under manned condition in order to lay a foundation for Azolla as a biological component in the next ground simulated experiment and space application. A closed test cham-ber of Controlled Ecological Life Support System and Azolla wet-culturing devices were built to measure the changes of atmospheric O2-CO2 concentration inside chamber under "Azolla-fish -men" coexisting condition. The results showed that, the amount of O2 consumption is 80.49 83.07 ml/h per kilogram fish, the amount of CO2 emissions is 70.49 73.56 ml/(kg • h); O2 consumption of trial volunteers is 19.71 L/h, the volume of respiration release CO2 18.90 L/h .Artificial light intensity of Azolla wet culture under 70009000 Lx, people respiration and Azolla photosynthesis complemented each other, the atmospheric O2-CO2 concentration inside chamber maintained equilibration. Elevated atmospheric CO2 concentrations in close chamber have obvious effects on enhancing Azolla net photosynthesis efficiency. This shows that Azolla has strong photosynthetic O2-releasing ability, which equilibrates the O2-CO2 concentration inside chamber in favor of human survival, and then verifies the prospect of Azolla in space application.

  17. Screening-level ecological and human health risk assessment of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in stormwater detention pond sediments of Coastal South Carolina, USA.

    PubMed

    Weinstein, John E; Crawford, Kevin D; Garner, Thomas R; Flemming, Alan J

    2010-06-15

    Screening-level ecological and human health assessments were performed for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) contamination in the sediments of 19 stormwater detention ponds located in coastal South Carolina. For ecological screening benchmarks, we used threshold and probable effect concentrations (TEC and PEC) derived from consensus-based sediment quality guidelines for individual PAH analytes and equilibrium partitioning sediment benchmarks-toxic units (SigmaESB-TU) derived for PAH mixtures. For human health benchmarks, we used preliminary remediation goals (PRGs). Sediments of five stormwater ponds (four commercial ponds and one residential pond with a large drainage area) exceeded PEC values for several PAH analytes and the SigmaESB-TU safe value of 1 for PAH mixtures. These same five stormwater ponds also exceeded the PRG values for five carcinogenic PAH analytes. These results suggest that the PAH levels in sediments from certain commercial and residential ponds have the potential to pose moderate to high risks for adverse, chronic effects to benthic organisms in situ and an increased risk of cancer to humans ex situ following excavation and on-site disposal. We recommend that sediment from these stormwater ponds be tested prior to excavation to determine the appropriate method of disposal. We also recommend that regulatory agencies enforce guidelines for periodic sediment removal as this should reduce both in situ and ex situ risks resulting from sediment PAH exposure.

  18. Emotional Reactivity and Regulation in Anxious and Nonanxious Youth: A Cell-Phone Ecological Momentary Assessment Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tan, Patricia Z.; Forbes, Erika E.; Dahl, Ronald E.; Ryan, Neal D.; Siegle, Greg J.; Ladouceur, Cecile D.; Silk, Jennifer S.

    2012-01-01

    Background: Reviews have highlighted anxious youths' affective disturbances, specifically, elevated negative emotions and reliance on ineffective emotion regulation strategies. However, no study has examined anxious youth's emotional reactivity and regulation in real-world contexts. Methods: This study utilized an ecological momentary assessment…

  19. A Study in Ecological Psychology: The Behavior Objects Used by Three-Year-Old Children from Three Income Groups.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Ellen

    This ecological study is one part of a broad research effort to understand the backgrounds and characteristics of culturally disadvantaged children. The study attempted to provide empirical data which could be used to describe differences in home environments and behavior of three young children from deprived and non-deprived homes. Focus was on…

  20. Conceptualizing and Estimating Process Speed in Studies Employing Ecological Momentary Assessment Designs: A Multilevel Variance Decomposition Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shiyko, Mariya P.; Ram, Nilam

    2011-01-01

    Researchers have been making use of ecological momentary assessment (EMA) and other study designs that sample feelings and behaviors in real time and in naturalistic settings to study temporal dynamics and contextual factors of a wide variety of psychological, physiological, and behavioral processes. As EMA designs become more widespread,…

  1. The Development of the Functional Literacy Experience Scale Based upon Ecological Theory (FLESBUET) and Validity-Reliability Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Özenç, Emine Gül; Dogan, M. Cihangir

    2014-01-01

    This study aims to perform a validity-reliability test by developing the Functional Literacy Experience Scale based upon Ecological Theory (FLESBUET) for primary education students. The study group includes 209 fifth grade students at Sabri Taskin Primary School in the Kartal District of Istanbul, Turkey during the 2010-2011 academic year.…

  2. ECOLOGICAL RISK ASSESSMENT

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Ecological Soil Screening Level (Eco-SSL) Work Group, composed of scientists and risk assessors from EPA, Environment Canada, DOE, Army, Navy, Air Force, states, industry, academia, and consulting companies, has been working on the development of scientifically sound, ecologi...

  3. Comparison of pollution levels on the Mississippi Gulf Coast during the 2010 Gulf BP oil spill to ecological and health-based standards.

    PubMed

    Beasley, Jerry; Reddy, Ramata S; Tchounwou, Paul; Kafoury, Ramzi

    2012-01-01

    To evaluate the possible impact that the BP Deepwater Horizon Gulf oil spill might have had on pollution levels in the State of Mississippi, the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ), and the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) analyzed surface water and ambient air quality pollutant data taken from MDEQ and EPA monitoring sites on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The data were compared with acute, chronic, and human health air and water quality standards to determine whether the pollutant levels occurring during the oil spill could cause ecological and/or human health effects. The water quality data indicated levels of nickel, vanadium, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and semivolatile organic compounds analyzed remained below acute and chronic levels for both aquatic life and human health. The air quality sampling data showed that the levels of VOCs and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons associated with the oil spill were well below EPA chronic and human health screening levels. A comparison of the air quality monitoring data taken before and after the oil spill showed that the concentrations of ozone and fine particulate matter were elevated for brief periods but remained below actionable levels.

  4. A Two-Year Ecological Study of Norway Rats (Rattus norvegicus) in a Brazilian Urban Slum

    PubMed Central

    Panti-May, Jesús A.; Carvalho-Pereira, Ticiana S. A.; Serrano, Soledad; Pedra, Gabriel G.; Taylor, Josh; Pertile, Arsinoê C.; Minter, Amanda; Airam, Vladimir; Carvalho, Mayara; Júnior, Nivison N.; Rodrigues, Gorete; Reis, Mitermayer G.; Ko, Albert I.; Childs, James E.; Begon, Mike; Costa, Federico

    2016-01-01

    The Norway or brown rat (Rattus norvegicus) is among the most ubiquitous of rodents. However, the lack of studies describing Norway rat populations from tropical areas have limited our understanding regarding their demography and seasonal dynamics. In this study, we describe seasonal pattern in the abundance, reproductive parameters, and morphometrics of Norway rat populations in Salvador, Brazil. Rodents were trapped over four seasonal trapping periods (2013–2014) from three valleys. A total of 802 Norway rats were trapped over the course of the study over 7653 trap-nights. Norway rat abundance was high, but there was no significant differences between seasons. The reproductive parameters (e.g. frequency of pregnant and lactating females) did not show statistical differences between seasons. Female rats collected in the rainy season were heavier and older than females from the dry season. Salvador rats had a high incidence of pregnancy and birth rate (estimated birth rate of 79 young per year) compared to previous studies. The information generated is critical for the understanding of the ecology of Norway rat, the main reservoir of Leptospira in Salvador. However, future studies examining the effect of rodent control programs aimed at reducing populations, and determining rates of recovery, will further clarify our understanding of population dynamics. PMID:27015422

  5. A Two-Year Ecological Study of Norway Rats (Rattus norvegicus) in a Brazilian Urban Slum.

    PubMed

    Panti-May, Jesús A; Carvalho-Pereira, Ticiana S A; Serrano, Soledad; Pedra, Gabriel G; Taylor, Josh; Pertile, Arsinoê C; Minter, Amanda; Airam, Vladimir; Carvalho, Mayara; Júnior, Nivison N; Rodrigues, Gorete; Reis, Mitermayer G; Ko, Albert I; Childs, James E; Begon, Mike; Costa, Federico

    2016-01-01

    The Norway or brown rat (Rattus norvegicus) is among the most ubiquitous of rodents. However, the lack of studies describing Norway rat populations from tropical areas have limited our understanding regarding their demography and seasonal dynamics. In this study, we describe seasonal pattern in the abundance, reproductive parameters, and morphometrics of Norway rat populations in Salvador, Brazil. Rodents were trapped over four seasonal trapping periods (2013-2014) from three valleys. A total of 802 Norway rats were trapped over the course of the study over 7653 trap-nights. Norway rat abundance was high, but there was no significant differences between seasons. The reproductive parameters (e.g. frequency of pregnant and lactating females) did not show statistical differences between seasons. Female rats collected in the rainy season were heavier and older than females from the dry season. Salvador rats had a high incidence of pregnancy and birth rate (estimated birth rate of 79 young per year) compared to previous studies. The information generated is critical for the understanding of the ecology of Norway rat, the main reservoir of Leptospira in Salvador. However, future studies examining the effect of rodent control programs aimed at reducing populations, and determining rates of recovery, will further clarify our understanding of population dynamics.

  6. Marine ecological-risk assessment pilot study for Allen Harbor, Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island. Professional paper

    SciTech Connect

    Johnston, R.K.; Munns, W.R.; Mueller, C.; Nelson, W.G.; Pesch, G.G.

    1992-01-01

    An ecological risk assessment framework was applied to characterize aquatic risks associated with hazardous waste disposal at Naval Construction Battalion Center (NCBC) Davisville, Rhode Island. An initial screening phase (I) assessed exposure and related that exposure to toxicological endpoints for bivalves, amphipods, sea urchins, and biomarker assays. Results showed little evidence of major contamination in sediments or tissues except for relatively high levels of polychlorinated biphenols (PBC), butyltins compounds (TBT), and fecal coliforms observed in Allen Harbor. Effects were detected in mussel physiology, sea urchin fertilization and development, biomarker responses, and soft shell clam histology. Possible sources of contamination and toxicity from the landfill leachate, surface runoff, and recreational boating were examined using a temporaland spatial sampling scheme. Chemical and toxicological information obtained implicated all three sources as affecting Allen Harbor water quality. Laboratory bioassays of landfill exposure media, employing a variety of marine species using acute and chronic endpoints, are being used to provide data for the development of an exposure-response model for risk to the marine environment. The model will define current risk and provide an interpretive framework for long-term monitoring.

  7. The influence of ecology on chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) cultural behavior: a case study of five Ugandan chimpanzee communities.

    PubMed

    Gruber, Thibaud; Potts, Kevin B; Krupenye, Christopher; Byrne, Maisie-Rose; Mackworth-Young, Constance; McGrew, William C; Reynolds, Vernon; Zuberbühler, Klaus

    2012-11-01

    The influence of ecology on the development of behavioral traditions in animals is controversial, particularly for chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes), for which it is difficult to rule out environmental influences as a cause of widely observed community-specific behavioral differences. Here, we investigated 3 potential scenarios that could explain the natural variation in a key extractive tool behavior, "fluid-dip," among several communities of chimpanzees of the Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii subspecies in Uganda. We compared data from previous behavioral ecological studies, field experiments, and long-term records of chimpanzee tool-using behavior. We focused on the quality of the available food, dietary preferences, and tool sets of 5 different communities, and carried out a standardized field experiment to test systematically for the presence of fluid-dip in 4 of these communities. Our results revealed major differences in habitat, available diet, and tool use behavior between geographically close communities. However, these differences in ecology and feeding behavior failed to explain the differences in tool use across communities. We conclude that ecological variables may lead both to innovation and loss of behavioral traditions, while contributing little to their transmission within the community. Instead, as soon as a behavioral tradition is established, sociocognitive factors likely play a key maintenance role as long as the ecological conditions do not change sufficiently for the tradition to be abandoned.

  8. Prevalence of asthma symptoms in schoolchildren, and climate in west European countries: an ecologic study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arnedo-Pena, Alberto; García-Marcos, Luis; Bercedo-Sanz, Alberto; Aguinaga-Ontoso, Inés; González-Díaz, Carlos; García-Merino, Águeda; Busquets-Monge, Rosa; Suárez-Varela, Maria Morales; Batlles-Garrido, Juan; Blanco-Quirós, Alfredo A.; López-Silvarrey, Angel; García-Hernández, Gloria; Fuertes, Jorge

    2013-09-01

    The aim of the present study was to estimate the associations between the prevalence of asthma symptoms in schoolchildren and meteorological variables in west European countries that participated in the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Children (ISAAC), Phase III 1997-2003. An ecologic study was carried out. The prevalence of asthma was obtained from this study from 48 centers in 14 countries, and meteorological variables from those stations closest to ISAAC centers, together with other socioeconomic and health care variables. Multilevel mixed-effects linear regression models were used. For schoolchildren aged 6-7 years, the prevalence rate of asthma decreased with an increase in mean annual sunshine hours, showed a positive association with rainy weather, and warm temperature, and a negative one with relative humidity and physician density (PD). Current wheeze prevalence was stronger in autumn/winter seasons and decreased with increasing PD. Severe current wheeze decreased with PD. For schoolchildren aged 13-14 years, the prevalence rates of asthma and current wheeze increased with rainy weather, and these rates decreased with increased PD. Current wheeze, as measured by a video questionnaire, was inversely associated with sunny weather, and nurse density. Severe current wheeze prevalence was stronger during autumn/winter seasons, decreased with PD, and indoor chlorinated public swimming pool density, and increased with rainy weather. Meteorological factors, including sunny and rainy weather, and PD may have some effect on the prevalence rates of asthma symptoms in children from west European countries.

  9. Associations between national tuberculosis program budgets and tuberculosis outcomes: an ecological study

    PubMed Central

    Chapple, Will; Katz, Alan Roy; Li, Dongmei

    2012-01-01

    Introduction The objective of this study is to explore the associations between national tuberculosis program (NTP) budget allocation and tuberculosis related outcomes in the World Health Organization's 22 high burden countries from 2007–2009. Methods This ecological study used mixed effects and generalized estimating equation models to identify independent associations between NTP budget allocations and various tuberculosis related outcomes. Models were adjusted for a number of independent variables previously noted to be associated with tuberculosis incidence. Results Increasing the percent of the NTP budget for advocacy, communication and social mobilization was associated with an increase in the case detection rate. Increasing TB-HIV funding was associated with an increase in HIV testing among TB patients. Increasing the percent of the population covered by the Directly Observed Therapy (DOT) program was associated with an increase in drug susceptibility testing. Laboratory funding was positively associated with tuberculosis notification. Increasing the budgets for first line drugs, management and multi-drug resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB) was associated with a decrease in smear positive deaths. Conclusion Effective TB control is a complex and multifaceted challenge. This study revealed a number of budget allocation related factors associated with improved TB outcome parameters. If confirmed with future longitudinal studies, these findings could help guide NTP managers with allocation decisions. PMID:23024825

  10. ELF communications system ecological monitoring program: Litter decomposition and microflora studies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bruhn, Johann N.; Bagley, Susan T.; Pickens, James B.

    1994-10-01

    The U.S. Navy has completed a program monitoring flora, fauna, and ecological relationships for possible effects from electromagnetic fields produced by its Extremely Low Frequency (ELF) Communications System. This report documents studies of litter decomposition and soil microflora conducted near its transmitting antenna in Michigan. From 1982 through 1993 researchers from the Michigan Technological University (MTU) monitored overall litter decomposition, as well as microflora (bacteria and fungi) important both as processors of organic material and causative agents of tree disease. Studies were performed in areas near (treatment) and far (control) from the ELF antenna Study parameters included total number of streptomycete individuals and species; mass loss of maple, oak, and pine leaf litter; and frequency of red pine mortality from Armillaria root disease. The MTU research team used several statistical models; however, nested analysis of covariance was the most frequently used test. Based on the results of their study, MTU investigators conclude that the EM fields produced by the Naval Radio Transmitting Facility-Republic, Michigan did not affect soil bacteria populations or the spread of the root disease. Loss of foliar mass suggests a statistically significant, but modest, increase in the rate of litter decomposition, possibly associated with electromagnetic exposure.

  11. The Study on Ecological Treatment of Saline Lands to Mitigate the Effects of Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Jiancang; Zhu, Jiwei; Wang, Tao

    2010-05-01

    The soil water and salt movement is influenced strongly by the frequent droughts, floods and climate change. Additionally, as continued population growth, large-scale reclaiming of arable land and long-term unreasonable irrigation, saline land is increasing at the rate of 1,000,000~15,000,000 mu each year all over the world. In the tradition management, " drainage as the main " measure has series of problem, which appears greater project, more occupation of land, harmful for water saving and downstream pollution. To response the global climate change, it has become the common understanding, which promote energy-saving and environment protection, reflect the current model, explore the ecological management model. In this paper, we take severe saline land—Lubotan in Shaanxi Province as an example. Through nearly 10 years harnessing practice and observing to meteorology, hydrology, soil indicators of climate, we analyze the influence of climate change to soil salinity movement at different seasons and years, then put forward and apply a new model of saline land harnessing to mitigate the Effects of Climate Change and self-rehabilitate entironment. This model will be changed "drainage" to "storage", through the establishment engineering of " storage as the main ", taken comprehensive measures of " project - biology - agriculture ", we are changing saline land into arable land. Adapted to natural changes of climate, rainfall, irrigation backwater, groundwater level, reduced human intervention to achieve system dynamic equilibrium. During the ten years, the salt of plough horizon has reduced from 0.74% to 0.20%, organic matter has increased from 0.7% to 0.92%, various indicators of soil is begining to go better. At the same time, reduced the water for irrigation, drainage pollution and investment costs. Through the model, reformed severe saline land 18,900 mu, increased new cultivated land 16,500 mu, comprehensive efficient significant, ensured the coordinated

  12. Ecological baseline studies in Los Alamos and Guaje Canyons County of Los Alamos, New Mexico. A two-year study

    SciTech Connect

    Foxx, T.S.

    1995-11-01

    During the summers of 1993 and 1994, the Biological Resource Evaluations Team (BRET) of the Environmental Protection Group (ESH-8) conducted baseline studies within two canyon systems, Los Alamos and Guaje Canyons. Biological data was collected within each canyon to provide background and baseline information for Ecological Risk models. Baseline studies included establishment of permanent vegetation plots within each canyon along the elevational gradient. Then, in association with the various vegetation types, surveys were conducted for ground dwelling insects, birds, and small mammals. The stream channels associated with the permanent vegetation plots were characterized and aquatic macroinvertebrates collected within the stream monthly throughout a six-month period. The Geographic Position System (GPS) in combination with ARC INFO was used to map the study areas. Considerable data was collected during these surveys and are summarized in individual chapters.

  13. Developing an Internet- and Mobile-Based System to Measure Cigarette Use Among Pacific Islanders: An Ecological Momentary Assessment Study

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Nasya; Sabado-Liwag, Melanie Dee; Orne, Annette; Toilolo, Tupou; Cen, Steven; May, Vanessa; Lee, Cevadne; Pang, Victor Kaiwi; Rainer, Michelle A; Vaivao, Dorothy Etimani S; Lepule, Jonathan Tana; Tanjasiri, Sora Park; Palmer, Paula Healani

    2016-01-01

    Background Recent prevalence data indicates that Pacific Islanders living in the United States have disproportionately high smoking rates when compared to the general populace. However, little is known about the factors contributing to tobacco use in this at-risk population. Moreover, few studies have attempted to determine these factors utilizing technology-based assessment techniques. Objective The objective was to develop a customized Internet-based Ecological Momentary Assessment (EMA) system capable of measuring cigarette use among Pacific Islanders in Southern California. This system integrated the ubiquity of text messaging, the ease of use associated with mobile phone apps, the enhanced functionality offered by Internet-based Cell phone-optimized Assessment Techniques (ICAT), and the high survey completion rates exhibited by EMA studies that used electronic diaries. These features were tested in a feasibility study designed to assess whether Pacific Islanders would respond to this method of measurement and whether the data gathered would lead to novel insights regarding the intrapersonal, social, and ecological factors associated with cigarette use. Methods 20 young adult smokers in Southern California who self-identified as Pacific Islanders were recruited by 5 community-based organizations to take part in a 7-day EMA study. Participants selected six consecutive two-hour time blocks per day during which they would be willing to receive a text message linking them to an online survey formatted for Web-enabled mobile phones. Both automated reminders and community coaches were used to facilitate survey completion. Results 720 surveys were completed from 840 survey time blocks, representing a completion rate of 86%. After adjusting for gender, age, and nicotine dependence, feeling happy (P=<.001) or wanting a cigarette while drinking alcohol (P=<.001) were positively associated with cigarette use. Being at home (P=.02) or being around people who are not

  14. A preliminary report on ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) recovered from forensic entomological studies conducted in different ecological habitats in Malaysia.

    PubMed

    Chen, C D; Nazni, W A; Lee, H L; Hashim, R; Abdullah, N A; Ramli, R; Lau, K W; Heo, C C; Goh, T G; Izzul, A A; Sofian-Azirun, M

    2014-06-01

    This study reported the ant species that were recovered from monkey carcasses in three different ecological habitats in Malaysia. The study was conducted from 9 May - 10 October 2007, 6 May - 6 August 2008 and 26 May - 14 July 2009 in forested area (Gombak, Selangor), coastal area (Tanjong Sepat, Selangor) and highland area (Bukit Cincin, Pahang), respectively. Monkey carcass was used as a model for human decomposition in this study. A total of 4 replicates were used in each of the study sites. Ants were observed to prey on eggs, larvae, pupae and newly emerged flies. This study found that ant species could be found at all stages of decomposition, indicating that ants were not a significant indicator for faunal succession. However, different species of ants were obtained from monkey carcasses placed in different ecological habitats. Cardiocondyla sp. was only found on carcasses placed in the coastal area; while Pheidole longipes, Hypoponera sp. and Pachycondyla sp. were solely found on carcasses placed in the highland area. On the other hand, Pheidologeton diversus and Paratrechina longicornis were found in several ecological habitats. These data suggests that specific ant species can act as geographic indicators for different ecological habitats in forensic entomology cases in Malaysia.

  15. Inventory of Selected Freshwater-Ecology Studies From the New England Coastal Basins (Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island), 1937-1997

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1999-01-01

    following ecological subjects of field study relevant to the NAWQA program: algae, macroinvertebrates, fish , habitat, and tissue or sediment...Coastal Basins by decade and ecological topic [--, no citations found] Decade Algae Macroinvertebrates Fish Habitat Tissue Sediment 1930’s 2 -- 2 2...management survey: Rhode Island Department of Fish and Wildlife, Fisheries Report 1, 59 p. Table 6. Citations of selected ecological studies in the New

  16. Bladder cancer mortality and private well use in New England: An ecological study

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ayotte, J.D.; Baris, D.; Cantor, K.P.; Colt, J.; Robinson, G.R.; Lubin, J.H.; Karagas, M.; Hoover, R.N.; Fraumeni, J.F.; Silverman, D.T.

    2006-01-01

    Study objective: To investigate the possible relation between bladder cancer mortality among white men and women and private water use in New England, USA, where rates have been persistently raised and use of private water supplies (wells) common. Design: Ecological study relating age adjusted cancer mortality rates for white men and women during 1985-1999 and proportion of persons using private water supplies in 1970. After regressing mortality rates on population density, Pearson correlation coefficients were computed between residual rates and the proportion of the population using private water supplies, using the state economic area as the unit of calculation. Calculations were conducted within each of 10 US regions. Setting: The 504 state economic areas of the contiguous United States. Participants: Mortality analysis of 11 cancer sites, with the focus on bladder cancer. Main results: After adjusting for the effect of population density, there was a statistically significant positive correlation between residual bladder cancer mortality rates and private water supply use among both men and women in New England (men, r=0.42; women, r=0.48) and New York/New Jersey (men, r=0.49; women, r=0.62). Conclusions: Use of well water from private sources, or a close correlate, may be an explanatory variable for the excess bladder cancer mortality in New England. Analytical studies are underway to clarify the relation between suspected water contaminants, particularly arsenic, and raised bladder cancer rates in northern New England.

  17. Frontiers of torenia research: innovative ornamental traits and study of ecological interaction networks through genetic engineering.

    PubMed

    Nishihara, Masahiro; Shimoda, Takeshi; Nakatsuka, Takashi; Arimura, Gen-Ichiro

    2013-06-26

    Advances in research in the past few years on the ornamental plant torenia (Torenia spps.) have made it notable as a model plant on the frontier of genetic engineering aimed at studying ornamental characteristics and pest control in horticultural ecosystems. The remarkable advantage of torenia over other ornamental plant species is the availability of an easy and high-efficiency transformation system for it. Unfortunately, most of the current torenia research is still not very widespread, because this species has not become prominent as an alternative to other successful model plants such as Arabidopsis, snapdragon and petunia. However, nowadays, a more global view using not only a few selected models but also several additional species are required for creating innovative ornamental traits and studying horticultural ecosystems. We therefore introduce and discuss recent research on torenia, the family Scrophulariaceae, for secondary metabolite bioengineering, in which global insights into horticulture, agriculture and ecology have been advanced. Floral traits, in torenia particularly floral color, have been extensively studied by manipulating the flavonoid biosynthetic pathways in flower organs. Plant aroma, including volatile terpenoids, has also been genetically modulated in order to understand the complicated nature of multi-trophic interactions that affect the behavior of predators and pollinators in the ecosystem. Torenia would accordingly be of great use for investigating both the variation in ornamental plants and the infochemical-mediated interactions with arthropods.

  18. Ecological studies on Al-Khadoud Spring, Al-Hassa, Saudi Arabia.

    PubMed

    Al-Kahtani, Mohammed A; Youssef, Ashraf M; Fathi, Adel A

    2007-11-15

    Al-Khadoud spring is one of the most important water resources in Al-Hassa Governorate, Saudi Arabia. However, much of its biotic information is still unknown. This study presented preliminary ecological information of this aquatic body. Regarding to macrophytes, a total of eight species were observed along the study sites. These species include two submerged aquatic plants (Potamogeton pectinatus L. and Ceratophyllum demersum L.). The common distributed species are Phragmites australis (Cav.) Trimex Steud and Cyperus rotundus (L.). On the other hand, a total of 20 algal genera were recorded with 7 genera of Chlorophyceae, 8 of Bacillariophyceae, 4 of Cyanophyceae and one of Euglenophyceae. The common phytoplankton occurred in all three investigated sites were Chlorella vulgaris, Mougeotia sp., Oscillatoria sp. and Actinastrum sp. Regarding to the biotic fauna, different forms of unicellular zooplankton such as Paramecium and Amoeba were recorded. Invertebrates such as freshwater insects and some freshwater snails were documented in the study sites including Melanodies tuberculata, Melanopsis praemorsa and Lymnaea auricularia. As regard to vertebrates, one species of fish, Aphanius dispar, dominate the spring basin and its extended channels.

  19. Microbial ecology studies of spontaneous fermentation: starter culture selection for prickly pear wine production.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Lerma, G K; Gutiérrez-Moreno, K; Cárdenas-Manríquez, M; Botello-Álvarez, E; Jiménez-Islas, H; Rico-Martínez, R; Navarrete-Bolaños, J L

    2011-08-01

    A procedure for designing starter cultures for fermentation is illustrated for prickly pear wine production. The illustration includes kinetic studies on inoculated and spontaneous fermentation, microorganism identification studies based on molecular biology tools, and microbial ecology studies, which led to the selection of strains that are capable of synthesizing alcohol and desirable volatile compounds. Results show that a mixed starter inoculum containing Pichia fermentans and Saccharomyces cerevisiae leads to a fermented product that contains 8.37% alcohol (v/v). The gas chromatography and mass spectrometry (GC-MS) analysis shows the presence of 9 major volatile compounds (Isobutanol, Isopentanol, Ethyl acetate, Isoamyl acetate, Ethyl octanoate, Ethyl decanoate, Ethyl 9-decanoate, β-Phenylethyl acetate, and Phenylethyl alcohol) that have ethereal, fruity, aromatic notes that are considered to be essential for a fine wine flavor. These compounds harmonically synergize with the alcohol to produce a fermented product with a unique flavor and taste. Several assays using the mixed culture show that the process is stable, predictable, controllable, and reproducible. Moreover, the results show that a mixed culture leads to a broader range of aromatic products than that produced by a single, pure culture. Therefore, we conclude that combinations of Saccharomyces strains and non-Saccharomyces strains can be used to obtain high-quality fermented beverages from prickly pear juice.

  20. Experience sampling and ecological momentary assessment studies in psychopharmacology: A systematic review.

    PubMed

    Bos, Fionneke M; Schoevers, Robert A; aan het Rot, Marije

    2015-11-01

    Experience sampling methods (ESM) and ecological momentary assessment (EMA) offer insight into daily life experiences, including symptoms of mental disorders. The application of ESM/EMA in psychopharmacology can be a valuable addition to more traditional measures such as retrospective self-report questionnaires because they may help reveal the impact of psychotropic medication on patients' actual experiences. In this paper we systematically review the existing literature on the use of ESM/EMA in psychopharmacology research. To this end, we searched the PsycInfo and Medline databases for all available ESM/EMA studies on the use of psychotropic medication in patients with DSM-III-R and DSM-IV disorders. Dissertations were excluded. We included 18 studies that applied ESM/EMA to study the effects of medication on patients with major depressive disorder, substance use disorder, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, psychotic disorder, and anxiety disorder. We found that ESM/EMA may allow researchers and clinicians to track patients during different phases of treatment: before treatment to predict outcome, during treatment to examine the effects of treatment on symptoms and different aspects of daily life experience, and after treatment to detect vulnerability for relapse. Moreover, ESM/EMA can potentially help determine how long and in what contexts medications are effective. Thus, ESM/EMA may benefit both researchers and clinicians and might prove to be an effective tool for improving the treatment of psychiatric patients.

  1. Frontiers of torenia research: innovative ornamental traits and study of ecological interaction networks through genetic engineering

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Advances in research in the past few years on the ornamental plant torenia (Torenia spps.) have made it notable as a model plant on the frontier of genetic engineering aimed at studying ornamental characteristics and pest control in horticultural ecosystems. The remarkable advantage of torenia over other ornamental plant species is the availability of an easy and high-efficiency transformation system for it. Unfortunately, most of the current torenia research is still not very widespread, because this species has not become prominent as an alternative to other successful model plants such as Arabidopsis, snapdragon and petunia. However, nowadays, a more global view using not only a few selected models but also several additional species are required for creating innovative ornamental traits and studying horticultural ecosystems. We therefore introduce and discuss recent research on torenia, the family Scrophulariaceae, for secondary metabolite bioengineering, in which global insights into horticulture, agriculture and ecology have been advanced. Floral traits, in torenia particularly floral color, have been extensively studied by manipulating the flavonoid biosynthetic pathways in flower organs. Plant aroma, including volatile terpenoids, has also been genetically modulated in order to understand the complicated nature of multi-trophic interactions that affect the behavior of predators and pollinators in the ecosystem. Torenia would accordingly be of great use for investigating both the variation in ornamental plants and the infochemical-mediated interactions with arthropods. PMID:23803155

  2. An Ecological Approach to Prospective and Retrospective Timing of Long Durations: A Study Involving Gamers

    PubMed Central

    Tobin, Simon; Bisson, Nicolas; Grondin, Simon

    2010-01-01

    To date, most studies comparing prospective and retrospective timing have failed to use long durations and tasks with a certain degree of ecological validity. The present study assessed the effect of the timing paradigm on playing video games in a “naturalistic environment” (gaming centers). In addition, as it involved gamers, it provided an opportunity to examine the effect of gaming profile on time estimation. A total of 116 participants were asked to estimate prospectively or retrospectively a video game session lasting 12, 35 or 58 minutes. The results indicate that time is perceived as longer in the prospective paradigm than in the retrospective one, although the variability of estimates is the same. Moreover, the 12-minute session was perceived as longer, proportionally, than the 35- and 58-minute sessions. The study also revealed that the number of hours participants spent playing video games per week was a significant predictor of time estimates. To account for the main findings, the differences between prospective and retrospective timing are discussed in quantitative terms using a proposed theoretical framework, which states that both paradigms use the same cognitive processes, but in different proportions. Finally, the hypothesis that gamers play more because they underestimate time is also discussed. PMID:20174648

  3. Bladder cancer mortality and private well use in New England: an ecological study

    PubMed Central

    Ayotte, Joseph D; Baris, Dalsu; Cantor, Kenneth P; Colt, Joanne; Robinson, Gilpin R; Lubin, Jay H; Karagas, Margaret; Hoover, Robert N; Fraumeni, Joseph F; Silverman, Debra T

    2006-01-01

    Study objective To investigate the possible relation between bladder cancer mortality among white men and women and private water use in New England, USA, where rates have been persistently raised and use of private water supplies (wells) common. Design Ecological study relating age adjusted cancer mortality rates for white men and women during 1985–1999 and proportion of persons using private water supplies in 1970. After regressing mortality rates on population density, Pearson correlation coefficients were computed between residual rates and the proportion of the population using private water supplies, using the state economic area as the unit of calculation. Calculations were conducted within each of 10 US regions. Setting The 504 state economic areas of the contiguous United States. Participants Mortality analysis of 11 cancer sites, with the focus on bladder cancer. Main results After adjusting for the effect of population density, there was a statistically significant positive correlation between residual bladder cancer mortality rates and private water supply use among both men and women in New England (men, r = 0.42; women, r = 0.48) and New York/New Jersey (men, r = 0.49; women, r = 0.62). Conclusions Use of well water from private sources, or a close correlate, may be an explanatory variable for the excess bladder cancer mortality in New England. Analytical studies are underway to clarify the relation between suspected water contaminants, particularly arsenic, and raised bladder cancer rates in northern New England. PMID:16415269

  4. Ecological Study of HIV Infection and Hypertension in Sub-Saharan Africa: Is There a Double Burden of Disease?

    PubMed Central

    Angkurawaranon, C.; Nitsch, D; Larke, N; Rehman, A. M.; Smeeth, L.; Addo, J.

    2016-01-01

    An ecological correlation study of the prevalence of hypertension with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) prevalence in sub-Saharan Africa was conducted to determine the extent to which these conditions coincide at country level. Methods Data on prevalence of hypertension were derived from a systematic search of literature published between 1975 and 2014 with corresponding national estimates on HIV prevalence and antiretroviral therapy (ART) coverage from the Demographic and Health Surveys and the joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS databases. National estimates on gross national income (GNI) and under-five mortality were obtained from the World Bank database. Linear regression analyses using robust standard errors (allowing for clustering at country level) were carried out for associations of age-standardised hypertension prevalence ratios (standardized to rural Uganda’s hypertension prevalence data) with HIV prevalence, adjusted for national indicators, year of study and sex of the study population. Results In total, 140 estimates of prevalence of hypertension representing 25 nations were sex-and area-matched with corresponding HIV prevalence. A two-fold increase in HIV prevalence was associated with a 9.29% increase in age, sex and study year-adjusted prevalence ratio for hypertension (95% CI 2.0 to 16.5, p = 0.01), which increased to 16.3% (95% CI 9.3 to 21.1) after adjusting for under-five mortality, GNI per capita and ART coverage. Conclusions Countries with a pronounced burden of HIV may also have an increased burden of non-communicable diseases such as hypertension with potential economic and health systems implications. PMID:27855194

  5. What is dental ecology?

    PubMed

    Cuozzo, Frank P; Sauther, Michelle L

    2012-06-01

    Teeth have long been used as indicators of primate ecology. Early work focused on the links between dental morphology, diet, and behavior, with more recent years emphasizing dental wear, microstructure, development, and biogeochemistry, to understand primate ecology. Our study of Lemur catta at the Beza Mahafaly Special Reserve, Madagascar, has revealed an unusual pattern of severe tooth wear and frequent tooth loss, primarily the result of consuming a fallback food for which these primates are not dentally adapted. Interpreting these data was only possible by combining our areas of expertise (dental anatomy [FC] and primate ecology [MS]). By integrating theoretical, methodological, and applied aspects of both areas of research, we adopted the term "dental ecology"-defined as the broad study of how teeth respond to the environment. Specifically, we view dental ecology as an interpretive framework using teeth as a vehicle for understanding an organism's ecology, which builds upon earlier work, but creates a new synthesis of anatomy and ecology that is only possible with detailed knowledge of living primates. This framework includes (1) identifying patterns of dental pathology and tooth use-wear, within the context of feeding ecology, behavior, habitat variation, and anthropogenic change, (2) assessing ways in which dental development and biogeochemical signals can reflect habitat, environmental change and/or stress, and (3) how dental microstructure and macro-morphology are adapted to, and reflect feeding ecology. Here we define dental ecology, provide a short summary of the development of this perspective, and place our new work into this context.

  6. Ecological Misconceptions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Munson, Bruce H.

    1994-01-01

    Presents a summary of the research literature on students' ecological conceptions and the implications of misconceptions. Topics include food webs, ecological adaptation, carrying capacity, ecosystem, and niche. (Contains 35 references.) (MKR)

  7. Ecotoxicogenomics to Support Ecological Risk Assessment: A Case Study with Bisphenol A in Fish

    EPA Science Inventory

    Toxicogenomic approaches are being increasingly applied in the field of ecotoxicology. Given the growing availability of ecotoxicogenomic data, the Agency and the broader scientific community are actively engaged in considering how best to use those data to support ecological ris...

  8. Terrestrial Ecology Guide.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Morrison, James W., Ed.; Hall, James A., Ed.

    This collection of study units focuses on the study of the ecology of land habitats. Considered are such topics as map reading, field techniques, forest ecosystem, birds, insects, small mammals, soils, plant ecology, preparation of terrariums, air pollution, photography, and essentials of an environmental studies program. Each unit contains…

  9. Revisiting the Affect Regulation Model of Binge Eating: A Meta-Analysis of Studies Using Ecological Momentary Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haedt-Matt, Alissa A.; Keel, Pamela K.

    2011-01-01

    The affect regulation model of binge eating, which posits that patients binge eat to reduce negative affect (NA), has received support from cross-sectional and laboratory-based studies. Ecological momentary assessment (EMA) involves momentary ratings and repeated assessments over time and is ideally suited to identify temporal antecedents and…

  10. Using Bronfenbrenner's Ecological Theory to Understand Community Partnerships: A Historical Case Study of One Urban High School

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Leonard, Jack

    2011-01-01

    Although the value of school-community partnerships is unquestioned, the reasons for success and failure are not sufficiently understood. This mixed-methods case study examines 60 years of partnering at one urban high school, using Bronfenbrenner's ecological systems theory to better understand the effect on student development as measured by…

  11. Studying Behavioral Ecology on High School & College Campuses: A Practical Guide to Measuring Foraging Behavior Using Urban Wildlife

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baker, Mohammad A. Abu; Emerson, Sara E.; Brown, Joel S.

    2015-01-01

    We present a practical field exercise for ecology and animal behavior classes that can be carried out on campus, using urban wildlife. Students document an animal's feeding behavior to study its interactions with the surrounding environment. In this approach, an animal's feeding behavior is quantified at experimental food patches placed within its…

  12. The Preparation of Gelatine-Embedded Soil and Litter Sections and Their Application to Some Soil Ecological Studies.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Anderson, J. M.

    1978-01-01

    A method is described for preparing large gelatine-embedded soil sections for ecological studies. Sampling methods reduce structural disturbance of the samples to a minimum and include freezing the samples in the field to kill soil invertebrates in their natural microhabitats. Projects are suggested for upper secondary school students. (Author/BB)

  13. The Effect of Recycling Education on High School Students' Conceptual Understanding about Ecology: A Study on Matter Cycle

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ugulu, Ilker; Yorek, Nurettin; Baslar, Suleyman

    2015-01-01

    The objective of this study is to analyze and determine whether a developed recycling education program would lead to a positive change in the conceptual understanding of ecological concepts associated with matter cycles by high school students. The research was conducted on 68 high school 10th grade students (47 female and 21 male students). The…

  14. The Ecological Footprint as an Educational Tool for Sustainability: A Case Study Analysis in an Israeli Public High School

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gottlieb, Dan; Vigoda-Gadot, Eran; Haim, Abraham; Kissinger, Meidad

    2012-01-01

    Education is widely acknowledged to be a means for advancing environmental sustainability. Many schools have recently introduced the idea of sustainability into their educational agenda and curriculum. This study uses an innovative method of communicating the principle of sustainability, the "Ecological Footprint" Analysis, which…

  15. Support for NATO Advanced Study Institute on molecular ecology of aquatic microbes, August 28--September 9, 1994. Final report

    SciTech Connect

    Joint, I.

    1995-06-16

    This is a summary paper for a NATO Advanced Study Institute sponsored meeting entitled `The Molecular Ecology of Aquatic Microbes` held in Luccia, Italy from August 28 to September 9, 1994. A full reference book for the proceedings is to be published later.

  16. The Association between Physical Fitness and Academic Achievement in Texas State House Legislative Districts: An Ecologic Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Janak, Jud C.; Gabriel, Kelley P.; Oluyomi, Abiodun O.; Peréz, Adriana; Kohl, Harold W.; Kelder, Steven H.

    2014-01-01

    Background: The association of physical fitness with cognitive function in children and adolescents is unclear. The purpose of this ecological study was to describe the association between academic achievement, body mass index (BMI), and cardiovascular fitness (CVF) in a large sample of elementary, middle, and high school students in Texas.…

  17. Hurricane Impacts on Ecological Services and Economic Values of Coastal Urban Forest: A Case Study of Pensacola, Florida

    EPA Science Inventory

    As urbanized areas continue to grow and green spaces dwindle, the importance of urban forests increases for both ecologically derived health benefits and for their potential to mitigate climate change. This study examined pre- and post- hurricane conditions of Pensacola's urban f...

  18. Factors influencing the prevalence and infestation levels of Varroa destructor in honeybee colonies in two highland agro-ecological zones of Uganda.

    PubMed

    Chemurot, Moses; Akol, Anne M; Masembe, Charles; de Smet, Lina; Descamps, Tine; de Graaf, Dirk C

    2016-04-01

    Varroa mites are ecto-parasites of honeybees and are a threat to the beekeeping industry. We identified the haplotype of Varroa mites and evaluated potential factors that influence their prevalence and infestation levels in the eastern and western highland agro-ecological zones of Uganda. This was done by collecting samples of adult worker bees between December 2014 and September 2015 in two sampling moments. Samples of bees were screened for Varroa using the ethanol wash method and the mites were identified by molecular techniques. All DNA sequences obtained from sampled mite populations in the two zones were 100 % identical to the Korean Haplotype (AF106899). Mean mite prevalence in the apiaries was 40 and 53 % for the western and eastern zones, respectively, during the first sampling. Over the second sampling, mean mite prevalence increased considerably in the western (59 %) but not in the eastern (51 %) zone. Factors that were associated with Varroa mite infestation levels include altitude, nature of apiary slope and apiary management practices during the first sampling. Our results further showed that Varroa mites were spreading from lower to higher elevations. Feral colonies were also infested with Varroa mites at infestation levels not significantly different from those in managed colonies. Colony productivity and strength were not correlated to mite infestation levels. We recommend a long-term Varroa mite monitoring strategy in areas of varying landscape and land use factors for a clear understanding of possible changes in mite infestation levels among African honeybees for informed decision making.

  19. Assessing the ecological security of the Tibetan plateau: methodology and a case study for Lhaze County.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yan-Zhi; Zou, Xue-Yong; Cheng, Hong; Jia, Hai-Kun; Wu, Yong-Qiu; Wang, Gui-Yong; Zhang, Chun-Lai; Gao, Shang-Yu

    2006-07-01

    A system for assessing the ecological security of Lhaze County in China's Tibetan Autonomous Region was developed using a pressure-state-response model and the analytic hierarchy process. We then used this model to comprehensively evaluate the status of ecological security in Lhaze County. Our results showed that the ecological environment in Lhaze County has deteriorated from an 'early stages of damage status' in the 1980s to 'moderately damaged status' today. This deterioration has become a major barrier to local economic development and social advancement. Natural and social aspects related to the population explosion, resource exploitation, and climate change that led to this ecological deterioration are discussed. Furthermore, we have suggested proposals for improving the ecological environment that include controlling population growth and enhancing the system of laws that protect the environment, upgrading 3 882.6 ha of low-yield farmland, planting 2 425.8, 548.8, and 1 207.4 ha of shelter belts for farmland protection, soil and water conservation, and fuelwood, respectively, and seeding 2 358.1 ha of artificial grassland. In the meantime, we propose strengthening the controls that limit soil and water loss, and optimizing industrial sectors that aspire to achieve high-efficiency, ecologically responsible agriculture.

  20. Spatial distribution of psychotic disorders in an urban area of France: an ecological study

    PubMed Central

    Pignon, Baptiste; Schürhoff, Franck; Baudin, Grégoire; Ferchiou, Aziz; Richard, Jean-Romain; Saba, Ghassen; Leboyer, Marion; Kirkbride, James B.; Szöke, Andrei

    2016-01-01

    Previous analyses of neighbourhood variations of non-affective psychotic disorders (NAPD) have focused mainly on incidence. However, prevalence studies provide important insights on factors associated with disease evolution as well as for healthcare resource allocation. This study aimed to investigate the distribution of prevalent NAPD cases in an urban area in France. The number of cases in each neighbourhood was modelled as a function of potential confounders and ecological variables, namely: migrant density, economic deprivation and social fragmentation. This was modelled using statistical models of increasing complexity: frequentist models (using Poisson and negative binomial regressions), and several Bayesian models. For each model, assumptions validity were checked and compared as to how this fitted to the data, in order to test for possible spatial variation in prevalence. Data showed significant overdispersion (invalidating the Poisson regression model) and residual autocorrelation (suggesting the need to use Bayesian models). The best Bayesian model was Leroux’s model (i.e. a model with both strong correlation between neighbouring areas and weaker correlation between areas further apart), with economic deprivation as an explanatory variable (OR = 1.13, 95% CI [1.02–1.25]). In comparison with frequentist methods, the Bayesian model showed a better fit. The number of cases showed non-random spatial distribution and was linked to economic deprivation. PMID:27189529

  1. Hydrology and ecology of pinyon-juniper woodlands: Conceptual framework and field studies

    SciTech Connect

    Wilcox, B.P.; Breshears, D.D.

    1994-09-01

    Pinyon-juniper woodlands represent an important ecosystem in the semiarid western United States. Concern over the sustainability of, and management approaches for, these woodlands is increasing. As in other semiarid environments, water dynamics and vegetation patterns in pinyon-juniper woodlands are highly interrelated. An understanding of these relationships can aid in evaluating various management strategies. In this paper we describe a conceptual framework designed to increase our understanding of water and vegetation in pinyon-juniper woodlands. The framework comprises five different scales, at each of which the landscape is divided into {open_quotes}functional units{close_quotes} on the basis of hydrologic characteristics. The hydrologic behavior of each unit and the connections between units are being evaluated using an extensive network of hydrological and ecological field studies on the Pajarito Plateau in northern New Mexico. Data from these studies, coupled with application of the conceptual model, have led to the development of a number of hypotheses concerning the interrelationships of water and vegetation in pinyon-juniper woodlands.

  2. Chemical mixtures and environmental effects: a pilot study to assess ecological exposure and effects in streams

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Buxton, Herbert T.; Reilly, Timothy J.; Kuivila, Kathryn; Kolpin, Dana W.; Bradley, Paul M.; Villeneuve, Daniel L.; Mills, Marc A.

    2015-01-01

    Assessment and management of the risks of exposure to complex chemical mixtures in streams are priorities for human and environmental health organizations around the world. The current lack of information on the composition and variability of environmental mixtures and a limited understanding of their combined effects are fundamental obstacles to timely identification and prevention of adverse human and ecological effects of exposure. This report describes the design of a field-based study of the composition and biological activity of chemical mixtures in U.S. stream waters affected by a wide range of human activities and contaminant sources. The study is a collaborative effort by the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Scientists sampled 38 streams spanning 24 States and Puerto Rico. Thirty-four of the sites were located in watersheds impacted by multiple contaminant sources, including industrial and municipal wastewater discharges, crop and animal agricultural runoff, urban runoff, and other point and nonpoint contaminant sources. The remaining four sites were minimally development reference watersheds. All samples underwent comprehensive chemical and biological characterization, including sensitive and specific direct analysis for over 700 dissolved organic and inorganic chemicals and field parameters, identification of unknown contaminants (environmental diagnostics), and a variety of bioassays to evaluate biological activity and toxicity.

  3. Water quality assessment of aquatic ecosystems using ecological criteria - case study in Bulgaria.

    PubMed

    Damyanova, Sonya; Ivanova, Iliana; Ignatova, Nadka

    2014-11-02

    Four aquatic ecosystems (two rivers and two dams) situated in the western part of Bulgaria were investigated over a three years' period. The River Egulya and Petrohan dam are situated in mountainous regions at about 1000 m altitude, and are not influenced by any anthropogenic sources. Petrohan dam is a site for long-term ecosystem research as a part of Bulgarian long-term ecological research network. The other two systems belong to populated industrial areas. The River Martinovska flows through a region with former long-term mining activity, while Ogosta dam is near a battery production factory. Both the geochemical and geographical ecosystems' conditions are different, and their social usage as well. Ogosta dam water is used for irrigation and Petrohan dam for electric supply. The ecosystem sensitivity to heavy metals was evaluated by a critical load approach. Two criteria were used for risk assessment: critical load exceedance and microbial toxicity test. All studied ecosystems were more sensitive to cadmium than to lead deposition. The potential risk of Cd damage is higher for Petrohan dam and the River Egulya, where critical load exceedance was calculated for two years. Pseudomonas putida growth inhibition test detected a lack of toxicity for all studied ecosystems at the time of investigation with the exception of the low water September sample of the River Martinovska. The fast bacterial test is very suitable for a regular measurement of water toxicity because of its simplicity, lack of sophisticated equipment and clear results.

  4. Water quality assessment of aquatic ecosystems using ecological criteria – case study in Bulgaria

    PubMed Central

    Damyanova, Sonya; Ivanova, Iliana; Ignatova, Nadka

    2014-01-01

    Four aquatic ecosystems (two rivers and two dams) situated in the western part of Bulgaria were investigated over a three years’ period. The River Egulya and Petrohan dam are situated in mountainous regions at about 1000 m altitude, and are not influenced by any anthropogenic sources. Petrohan dam is a site for long-term ecosystem research as a part of Bulgarian long-term ecological research network. The other two systems belong to populated industrial areas. The River Martinovska flows through a region with former long-term mining activity, while Ogosta dam is near a battery production factory. Both the geochemical and geographical ecosystems’ conditions are different, and their social usage as well. Ogosta dam water is used for irrigation and Petrohan dam for electric supply. The ecosystem sensitivity to heavy metals was evaluated by a critical load approach. Two criteria were used for risk assessment: critical load exceedance and microbial toxicity test. All studied ecosystems were more sensitive to cadmium than to lead deposition. The potential risk of Cd damage is higher for Petrohan dam and the River Egulya, where critical load exceedance was calculated for two years. Pseudomonas putida growth inhibition test detected a lack of toxicity for all studied ecosystems at the time of investigation with the exception of the low water September sample of the River Martinovska. The fast bacterial test is very suitable for a regular measurement of water toxicity because of its simplicity, lack of sophisticated equipment and clear results. PMID:26019591

  5. Radon in Drinking Water and Cancer Mortality: An Ecological Study in Japan

    SciTech Connect

    Yoshinaga, Shinji; Ishikawa, Tetsuo; Tokonami, Shinji; Mizoue, Tetsuya; Narazaki, Yukinori; Mizuno, Shoichi; Akiba, Suminori

    2008-08-07

    There is limited information on the health effects of radon in drinking water in spite of their potential exposures. We conducted an ecological study in a small town in Japan where the groundwater with high concentrations of radon is supplied as utilities. A total of 607 cancer deaths were ascertained by vital statistics in that town from 1972 to 1997. Standardized mortality ratios on the basis of national rates were 1.01 (95% confidence interval; 0.93-1.09) for all cancers, 1.10 (0.95-1.28) for stomach cancer, 0.88 (0.70-1.10) for lung cancer, and 1.14 (0.87-1.48) for liver cancer. Mortality from liver cancer was significantly higher than that of two surrounding control cities combined, with a relative risk of 1.40 (1.04-1.89) based on Poisson regression analysis. Lack of information on possible confounders including diet, alcohol drinking, smoking and hepatitis virus infection, is the main limitation of the study, which precludes the evaluation of causal associations.

  6. Radon in Drinking Water and Cancer Mortality: An Ecological Study in Japan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoshinaga, Shinji; Ishikawa, Tetsuo; Tokonami, Shinji; Mizoue, Tetsuya; Narazaki, Yukinori; Mizuno, Shoichi; Akiba, Suminori

    2008-08-01

    There is limited information on the health effects of radon in drinking water in spite of their potential exposures. We conducted an ecological study in a small town in Japan where the groundwater with high concentrations of radon is supplied as utilities. A total of 607 cancer deaths were ascertained by vital statistics in that town from 1972 to 1997. Standardized mortality ratios on the basis of national rates were 1.01 (95% confidence interval; 0.93-1.09) for all cancers, 1.10 (0.95-1.28) for stomach cancer, 0.88 (0.70-1.10) for lung cancer, and 1.14 (0.87-1.48) for liver cancer. Mortality from liver cancer was significantly higher than that of two surrounding control cities combined, with a relative risk of 1.40 (1.04-1.89) based on Poisson regression analysis. Lack of information on possible confounders including diet, alcohol drinking, smoking and hepatitis virus infection, is the main limitation of the study, which precludes the evaluation of causal associations.

  7. [The application of ecological momentary assessment to the study of compulsive buying].

    PubMed

    Silbermann, Andrea; Henkel, Andreas; Müller, Astrid; de Zwaan, Martina

    2008-12-01

    Although compulsive buying is a disorder that has begun to receive attention from researchers in recent years, relatively little is known about the relationship between compulsive buying, mood, and daily stressful events. In our pilot study ecological momentary assessment (EMA) was used to examine the described relationships for the first time. 26 patients, who met criteria for compulsive buying, self-monitored their pathological behaviour, their momentary mood and the occurrence of stressful events four times a day on a handheld computer for a period of two weeks. On days with excessive buying behaviour patients reported significantly more daily stressful events compared to days without pathological buying. Before the buying episode patients recorded significantly more positive emotions. The most common consequence of compulsive buying was a significant decrease of positive affects. Thus the results of the current study suggest that mood states and daily stressful events are associated with compulsive buying behaviour. Although mood got worse immediately after excessive buying, this negative consequence did not reduce the frequency of pathological behaviour. This could implicate a high presence-orientation and impulsivity of the patients.

  8. Carbon Dioxide Emissions and Change in Prevalence of Obesity and Diabetes in the United States: An Ecological Study

    PubMed Central

    Zheutlin, Alexander R.; Adar, Sara D.; Park, Sung Kyun

    2014-01-01

    Recent studies suggest that increasing levels of the greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide (CO2), may influence weight gain and thus may play a role in rising trends in obesity and diabetes. We conducted an ecological study to examine the associations between CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion and changes in the prevalence of obesity and diabetes in the United States. County-level data on CO2 emissions, prevalence of obesity and diagnosed diabetes, other sociodemographic factors and neighborhood characteristics related to urbanicity, and fine particles (PM2.5) between 2004 and 2008 were obtained from the Vulcan Project, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and American Community Survey. Linear mixed effect modeling of 3019 counties for the associations between average CO2 emissions and changes in diabetes and obesity prevalence between 2004 and 2008 was performed. The average obesity and diabetes prevalence increased between 2004 and 2008 by 3.65% (SD: 1.88%) and 1.65% (SD: 1.70%), respectively. A marginally significant positive association between CO2 emission and changes in obesity prevalence was found with adjustment for sociodemographic factors, indicators of urbanicity and spatial autocorrelation (p-trend=0.06). The association became weaker and nonsignificant with further adjustment for PM2.5 (p-trend=0.17). There was a significant positive association between CO2 emission and changes in diabetes prevalence before controlling for PM2.5 (p-trend=0.05) but the association became null after controlling for PM2.5 (p-trend=0.49), suggesting PM2.5 is a critical confounder in the association between CO2 emission and changes in diabetes prevalence. This study does not support the hypothesis that CO2 emissions, a leading driver of climate change, may be linked to increasing trends in obesity and diabetes, though there was an indication of possible link between CO2 and obesity. PMID:25108606

  9. Carbon dioxide emissions and change in prevalence of obesity and diabetes in the United States: an ecological study.

    PubMed

    Zheutlin, Alexander R; Adar, Sara D; Park, Sung Kyun

    2014-12-01

    Recent studies suggest that increasing levels of the greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide (CO2), may influence weight gain and thus may play a role in rising trends in obesity and diabetes. We conducted an ecological study to examine the associations between CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion and changes in the prevalence of obesity and diabetes in the United States. County-level data on CO2 emissions, prevalence of obesity and diagnosed diabetes, other sociodemographic factors and neighborhood characteristics related to urbanicity, and fine particles (PM2.5) between 2004 and 2008 were obtained from the Vulcan Project, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and American Community Survey. Linear mixed effect modeling of 3019 counties for the associations between average CO2 emissions and changes in diabetes and obesity prevalence between 2004 and 2008 was performed. The average obesity and diabetes prevalence increased between 2004 and 2008 by 3.65% (SD: 1.88%) and 1.65% (SD: 1.70%), respectively. A marginally significant positive association between CO2 emission and changes in obesity prevalence was found with adjustment for sociodemographic factors, indicators of urbanicity and spatial autocorrelation (p-trend=0.06). The association became weaker and nonsignificant with further adjustment for PM2.5 (p-trend=0.17). There was a significant positive association between CO2 emission and changes in diabetes prevalence before controlling for PM2.5 (p-trend=0.05) but the association became null after controlling for PM2.5 (p-trend=0.49), suggesting that PM2.5 is a critical confounder in the association between CO2 emission and changes in diabetes prevalence. This study does not support the hypothesis that CO2 emissions, a leading driver of climate change, may be linked to increasing trends in obesity and diabetes, though there was an indication of possible link between CO2 and obesity.

  10. Which Species Are We Researching and Why? A Case Study of the Ecology of British Breeding Birds

    PubMed Central

    McKenzie, Ailsa J.; Robertson, Peter A.

    2015-01-01

    Our ecological knowledge base is extensive, but the motivations for research are many and varied, leading to unequal species representation and coverage. As this evidence is used to support a wide range of conservation, management and policy actions, it is important that gaps and biases are identified and understood. In this paper we detail a method for quantifying research effort and impact at the individual species level, and go on to investigate the factors that best explain between-species differences in outputs. We do this using British breeding birds as a case study, producing a ranked list of species based on two scientific publication metrics: total number of papers (a measure of research quantity) and h-index (a measure of the number of highly cited papers on a topic – an indication of research quality). Widespread, populous species which are native, resident and in receipt of biodiversity action plans produced significantly higher publication metrics. Guild was also significant, birds of prey the most studied group, with pigeons and doves the least studied. The model outputs for both metrics were very similar, suggesting that, at least in this example, research quantity and quality were highly correlated. The results highlight three key gaps in the evidence base, with fewer citations and publications relating to migrant breeders, introduced species and species which have experienced contractions in distribution. We suggest that the use of publication metrics in this way provides a novel approach to understanding the scale and drivers of both research quantity and impact at a species level and could be widely applied, both taxonomically and geographically. PMID:26154759

  11. Ecological speciation in marine v. freshwater fishes.

    PubMed

    Puebla, O

    2009-10-01

    Absolute barriers to dispersal are not common in marine systems, and the prevalence of planktonic larvae in marine taxa provides potential for gene flow across large geographic distances. These observations raise the fundamental question in marine evolutionary biology as to whether geographic and oceanographic barriers alone can account for the high levels of species diversity observed in marine environments such as coral reefs, or whether marine speciation also operates in the presence of gene flow between diverging populations. In this respect, the ecological hypothesis of speciation, in which reproductive isolation results from divergent or disruptive natural selection, is of particular interest because it may operate in the presence of gene flow. Although important insights into the process of ecological speciation in aquatic environments have been provided by the study of freshwater fishes, comparatively little is known about the possibility of ecological speciation in marine teleosts. In this study, the evidence consistent with different aspects of the ecological hypothesis of speciation is evaluated in marine fishes. Molecular approaches have played a critical role in the development of speciation hypotheses in marine fishes, with a role of ecology suggested by the occurrence of sister clades separated by ecological factors, rapid cladogenesis or the persistence of genetically and ecologically differentiated species in the presence of gene flow. Yet, ecological speciation research in marine fishes is still largely at an exploratory stage. Cases where the major ingredients of ecological speciation, namely a source of natural divergent or disruptive selection, a mechanism of reproductive isolation and a link between the two have been explicitly documented are few. Even in these cases, specific predictions of the ecological hypothesis of speciation remain largely untested. Recent developments in the study of freshwater fishes illustrate the potential for

  12. The Social-Ecological Ideal.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gaidamak, A.; Tiittanen, T.

    1992-01-01

    Argues that it is essential for preschool education to explore environmental and ecological values. Discusses cognitive development of socio-ecological knowledge at three age levels. Asserts that folk tales provide good examples of ecological values because beauty usually triumphs over ugliness and good over evil. (CFR)

  13. [Ecological monitoring in agro-ecological systems].

    PubMed

    Baĭkov, B D

    1983-01-01

    The fundamental principles of the ecologic monitoring in the antropogenic ecosystems are dealt with. Analyzed are the structure and function of the agroecologic systems, and, on the basis of the particular aspects established a concept is developed of the ecologic control at autoecologic and biocoenologic level. An analysis is likewise made of the ecologic sequelae resulting from the chemical war launched by the American aggressors in Vietnam and the specific trends therefrom in the substantiation of the ecologic monitoring. Stated is the necessity of profound investigations to establish the bioaccumulation of dioxine, a poisonous agent which was contained in herbicides and defoliants used in the war, and which was distinguished by exclusively high toxicity, producing teratogenic and cancerogenic effects and possessing high resistance in the environment.

  14. Environmental exposure to gasoline and leukemia in children and young adults--an ecology study.

    PubMed

    Nordlinder, R; Järvholm, B

    1997-01-01

    Benzene is an established cause of leukemia in adults, especially acute non-lymphocytic leukemia (ANLL). A few studies have indicated that exposure to gasoline is a cause of childhood leukemia. The purpose of this study was to investigate if environmental exposure to benzene from gasoline and car exhaust was associated with leukemia in children and young adults. The exposure to gasoline and car exhaust was estimated by the number of cars per area. In this ecology study, data on the incidence of cancer in each municipality of Sweden during an 11-year period (1975-1985) were compared with the number of cars per area. Data on the incidence of cancer for persons aged 0-24 years at diagnosi