Science.gov

Sample records for local biodiversity action

  1. Biodiversity conservation in local planning.

    PubMed

    Miller, James R; Groom, Martha; Hess, George R; Steelman, Toddi; Stokes, David L; Thompson, Jan; Bowman, Troy; Fricke, Laura; King, Brandon; Marquardt, Ryan

    2009-02-01

    Local land-use policy is increasingly being recognized as fundamental to biodiversity conservation in the United States. Many planners and conservation scientists have called for broader use of planning and regulatory tools to support the conservation of biodiversity at local scales. Yet little is known about the pervasiveness of these practices. We conducted an on-line survey of county, municipal, and tribal planning directors (n =116) in 3 geographic regions of the United States: metropolitan Seattle, Washington; metropolitan Des Moines, Iowa; and the Research Triangle, North Carolina. Our objectives were to gauge the extent to which local planning departments address biodiversity conservation and to identify factors that facilitate or hinder conservation actions in local planning. We found that biodiversity conservation was seldom a major consideration in these departments. Staff time was mainly devoted to development mandates and little time was spent on biodiversity conservation. Regulations requiring conservation actions that might benefit biodiversity were uncommon, with the exception of rules governing water quality in all 3 regions and the protection of threatened and endangered species in the Seattle region. Planning tools that could enhance habitat conservation were used infrequently. Collaboration across jurisdictions was widespread, but rarely focused on conservation. Departments with a conservation specialist on staff tended to be associated with higher levels of conservation actions. Jurisdictions in the Seattle region also reported higher levels of conservation action, largely driven by state and federal mandates. Increased funding was most frequently cited as a factor that would facilitate greater consideration of biodiversity in local planning. There are numerous opportunities for conservation biologists to play a role in improving conservation planning at local scales.

  2. Identifying local-scale wilderness for on-ground conservation actions within a global biodiversity hotspot

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Shiwei; Wu, Ruidong; Hua, Chaolang; Ma, Jianzhong; Wang, Wenli; Yang, Feiling; Wang, Junjun

    2016-01-01

    Protecting wilderness areas (WAs) is a crucial proactive approach to sustain biodiversity. However, studies identifying local-scale WAs for on-ground conservation efforts are still very limited. This paper investigated the spatial patterns of wilderness in a global biodiversity hotspot – Three Parallel Rivers Region (TPRR) in southwest China. Wilderness was classified into levels 1 to 10 based on a cluster analysis of five indicators, namely human population density, naturalness, fragmentation, remoteness, and ruggedness. Only patches characterized by wilderness level 1 and ≥1.0 km2 were considered WAs. The wilderness levels in the northwest were significantly higher than those in the southeast, and clearly increased with the increase in elevation. The WAs covered approximately 25% of TPRR’s land, 89.3% of which was located in the >3,000 m elevation zones. WAs consisted of 20 vegetation types, among which temperate conifer forest, cold temperate shrub and alpine ecosystems covered 79.4% of WAs’ total area. Most WAs were still not protected yet by existing reserves. Topography and human activities are the primary influencing factors on the spatial patterns of wilderness. We suggest establishing strictly protected reserves for most large WAs, while some sustainable management approaches might be more optimal solutions for many highly fragmented small WAs. PMID:27181186

  3. Identifying local-scale wilderness for on-ground conservation actions within a global biodiversity hotspot

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lin, Shiwei; Wu, Ruidong; Hua, Chaolang; Ma, Jianzhong; Wang, Wenli; Yang, Feiling; Wang, Junjun

    2016-05-01

    Protecting wilderness areas (WAs) is a crucial proactive approach to sustain biodiversity. However, studies identifying local-scale WAs for on-ground conservation efforts are still very limited. This paper investigated the spatial patterns of wilderness in a global biodiversity hotspot – Three Parallel Rivers Region (TPRR) in southwest China. Wilderness was classified into levels 1 to 10 based on a cluster analysis of five indicators, namely human population density, naturalness, fragmentation, remoteness, and ruggedness. Only patches characterized by wilderness level 1 and ≥1.0 km2 were considered WAs. The wilderness levels in the northwest were significantly higher than those in the southeast, and clearly increased with the increase in elevation. The WAs covered approximately 25% of TPRR’s land, 89.3% of which was located in the >3,000 m elevation zones. WAs consisted of 20 vegetation types, among which temperate conifer forest, cold temperate shrub and alpine ecosystems covered 79.4% of WAs’ total area. Most WAs were still not protected yet by existing reserves. Topography and human activities are the primary influencing factors on the spatial patterns of wilderness. We suggest establishing strictly protected reserves for most large WAs, while some sustainable management approaches might be more optimal solutions for many highly fragmented small WAs.

  4. Children prioritize virtual exotic biodiversity over local biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Ballouard, Jean-Marie; Brischoux, François; Bonnet, Xavier

    2011-01-01

    Environmental education is essential to stem current dramatic biodiversity loss, and childhood is considered as the key period for developing awareness and positive attitudes toward nature. Children are strongly influenced by the media, notably the internet, about biodiversity and conservation issues. However, most media focus on a few iconic, appealing, and usually exotic species. In addition, virtual activities are replacing field experiences. This situation may curb children knowledge and concerns about local biodiversity. Focusing our analyses on local versus exotic species, we examined the level of knowledge and the level of diversity of the animals that French schoolchildren are willing to protect, and whether these perceptions are mainly guided by information available in the internet. For that, we collected and compared two complementary data sets: 1) a questionnaire was administered to schoolchildren to assess their knowledge and consideration to protect animals, 2) an internet content analysis (i.e. Google searching sessions using keywords) was performed to assess which animals are the most often represented. Our results suggest that the knowledge of children and their consideration to protect animal are mainly limited to internet contents, represented by a few exotic and charismatic species. The identification rate of local animals by schoolchildren was meager, suggesting a worrying disconnection from their local environment. Schoolchildren were more prone to protect "virtual" (unseen, exotic) rather than local animal species. Our results reinforce the message that environmental education must also focus on outdoor activities to develop conservation consciousness and concerns about local biodiversity.

  5. Children Prioritize Virtual Exotic Biodiversity over Local Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Ballouard, Jean-Marie; Brischoux, François; Bonnet, Xavier

    2011-01-01

    Environmental education is essential to stem current dramatic biodiversity loss, and childhood is considered as the key period for developing awareness and positive attitudes toward nature. Children are strongly influenced by the media, notably the internet, about biodiversity and conservation issues. However, most media focus on a few iconic, appealing, and usually exotic species. In addition, virtual activities are replacing field experiences. This situation may curb children knowledge and concerns about local biodiversity. Focusing our analyses on local versus exotic species, we examined the level of knowledge and the level of diversity of the animals that French schoolchildren are willing to protect, and whether these perceptions are mainly guided by information available in the internet. For that, we collected and compared two complementary data sets: 1) a questionnaire was administered to schoolchildren to assess their knowledge and consideration to protect animals, 2) an internet content analysis (i.e. Google searching sessions using keywords) was performed to assess which animals are the most often represented. Our results suggest that the knowledge of children and their consideration to protect animal are mainly limited to internet contents, represented by a few exotic and charismatic species. The identification rate of local animals by schoolchildren was meager, suggesting a worrying disconnection from their local environment. Schoolchildren were more prone to protect “virtual” (unseen, exotic) rather than local animal species. Our results reinforce the message that environmental education must also focus on outdoor activities to develop conservation consciousness and concerns about local biodiversity. PMID:21829710

  6. Biodiversity Lab: Using Local Resources.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gillie, Lynn L.

    1997-01-01

    Examining living organisms in one's own backyard is a key first step toward appreciating the scope and importance of biological diversity throughout the world. The goals of this lab are to involve students in exploring the biodiversity around them, appreciating its scope, and asking questions of new organisms that they may never have noticed…

  7. Local land-use planning to conserve biodiversity: planners' perspectives on what works.

    PubMed

    Stokes, David L; Hanson, Marian F; Oaks, Deborah D; Straub, Jaime E; Ponio, Aileen V

    2010-04-01

    Because habitat loss due to urbanization is a primary threat to biodiversity, and land-use decisions in urbanizing areas are mainly made at the local level, land-use planning by municipal planning departments has a potentially important--but largely unrealized--role in conserving biodiversity. To understand planners' perspectives on the factors that facilitate and impede biodiversity conservation in local planning, we interviewed directors of 17 municipal planning departments in the greater Seattle (Washington, U.S.A.) area and compared responses of planners from similar-sized jurisdictions that were "high" and "low performing" with respect to incorporation of biodiversity conservation in local planning. Planners from low-performing jurisdictions regarded mandates from higher governmental levels as the primary drivers of biodiversity conservation, whereas those from high-performing jurisdictions regarded community values as the main drivers, although they also indicated that mandates were important. Biodiversity conservation was associated with presence of local conservation flagship elements (e.g., salmonids) and human-centered benefits of biodiversity conservation (e.g., quality of life). Planners from high- and low-performing jurisdictions favored different planning mechanisms for biodiversity conservation, perhaps reflecting differences in funding and staffing. High performers reported more collaborations with other entities on biodiversity issues. Planners' comments indicated that the term biodiversity may be problematic in the context of local planning. The action most planners recommended to increase biodiversity conservation in local planning was public education. These results suggest that to advance biodiversity conservation in local land-use planning, conservation biologists should investigate and educate the public about local conservation flagships and human benefits of local biodiversity, work to raise ecological literacy and explain biodiversity more

  8. Macroecology of biodiversity: disentangling local and regional effects.

    PubMed

    Pärtel, Meelis; Bennett, Jonathan A; Zobel, Martin

    2016-07-01

    Contents 404 I. 404 II. 404 III. 405 IV. 406 V. 407 VI. 408 409 References 409 SUMMARY: Macroecology of biodiversity disentangles local and regional drivers of biodiversity by exploring large-scale biodiversity relationships with environmental or biotic gradients, generalizing local biodiversity relationships across regions, or comparing biodiversity patterns among species groups. A macroecological perspective is also important at local scales: a full understanding of local biodiversity drivers, including human impact, demands that regional processes be taken into account. This requires knowledge of which species could inhabit a site (the species pool), including those that are currently absent (dark diversity). Macroecology of biodiversity is currently advancing quickly owing to an unprecedented accumulation of biodiversity data, new sampling techniques and analytical methods, all of which better equip us to face current and future challenges in ecology and biodiversity conservation.

  9. Local scale effects of disease on biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Smith, Katherine F; Behrens, Michael D; Sax, Dov F

    2009-06-01

    To date, ecologists and conservation biologists have focused much of their attention on the population and ecosystem effects of disease at regional scales and the role that diseases play in global species extinction. Far less research has been dedicated to identifying the effects that diseases can have on local scale species assemblages. We examined the role of infectious disease in structuring local biodiversity. Our intention was to illustrate how variable outcomes can occur by focusing on three case studies: the influence of chestnut blight on forest communities dominated by chestnut trees, the influence of red-spot disease on urchin barrens and kelp forests, and the influence of sylvatic plague on grassland communities inhabited by prairie dogs. Our findings reveal that at local scales infectious disease seems to play an important, though unpredictable, role in structuring species diversity. Through our case studies, we have shown that diseases can cause drastic population declines or local extirpations in keystone species, ecosystem engineers, and otherwise abundant species. These changes in local diversity may be very important, particularly when considered alongside potentially corresponding changes in community structure and function, and we believe that future efforts to understand the importance of disease to species diversity should have an increased focus on these local scales.

  10. Digital Geogames to Foster Local Biodiversity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schaal, Sonja; Schaal, Steffen; Lude, Armin

    2015-01-01

    The valuing of biodiversity is considered to be a first step towards its conservation. Therefore, the aim of the BioDiv2Go project is to combine sensuous experiences discovering biodiversity with mobile technology and a game-based learning approach. Following the competence model for environmental education (Roczen et al, 2014), Geogames (location…

  11. The Biodiversity Community Action Project: An STS Investigation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aidin, Amirshokoohi; Mahsa, Kazempour

    2010-01-01

    The Biodiversity Community Action Project is a stimulating and vigorous project that allows students to gain an in-depth understanding of the interconnection between organisms and their environments as well as the connection of science to their lives and society. It addresses key content standards in the National Science Education Standards and…

  12. Biodiversity in School Grounds: Auditing, Monitoring and Managing an Action Plan

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mansell, Michelle

    2010-01-01

    The idea of using site biodiversity action plans to introduce biodiversity management initiatives into school grounds is outlined. Selected parts of a case study, involving the use of such an action plan to record, monitor and plan for biodiversity on a university campus, are described and ideas for applying a similar plan to a school setting are…

  13. Global effects of land use on local terrestrial biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Newbold, Tim; Hudson, Lawrence N; Hill, Samantha L L; Contu, Sara; Lysenko, Igor; Senior, Rebecca A; Börger, Luca; Bennett, Dominic J; Choimes, Argyrios; Collen, Ben; Day, Julie; De Palma, Adriana; Díaz, Sandra; Echeverria-Londoño, Susy; Edgar, Melanie J; Feldman, Anat; Garon, Morgan; Harrison, Michelle L K; Alhusseini, Tamera; Ingram, Daniel J; Itescu, Yuval; Kattge, Jens; Kemp, Victoria; Kirkpatrick, Lucinda; Kleyer, Michael; Correia, David Laginha Pinto; Martin, Callum D; Meiri, Shai; Novosolov, Maria; Pan, Yuan; Phillips, Helen R P; Purves, Drew W; Robinson, Alexandra; Simpson, Jake; Tuck, Sean L; Weiher, Evan; White, Hannah J; Ewers, Robert M; Mace, Georgina M; Scharlemann, Jörn P W; Purvis, Andy

    2015-04-02

    Human activities, especially conversion and degradation of habitats, are causing global biodiversity declines. How local ecological assemblages are responding is less clear--a concern given their importance for many ecosystem functions and services. We analysed a terrestrial assemblage database of unprecedented geographic and taxonomic coverage to quantify local biodiversity responses to land use and related changes. Here we show that in the worst-affected habitats, these pressures reduce within-sample species richness by an average of 76.5%, total abundance by 39.5% and rarefaction-based richness by 40.3%. We estimate that, globally, these pressures have already slightly reduced average within-sample richness (by 13.6%), total abundance (10.7%) and rarefaction-based richness (8.1%), with changes showing marked spatial variation. Rapid further losses are predicted under a business-as-usual land-use scenario; within-sample richness is projected to fall by a further 3.4% globally by 2100, with losses concentrated in biodiverse but economically poor countries. Strong mitigation can deliver much more positive biodiversity changes (up to a 1.9% average increase) that are less strongly related to countries' socioeconomic status.

  14. Understanding local-scale drivers of biodiversity outcomes in terrestrial protected areas.

    PubMed

    Barnes, Megan D; Craigie, Ian D; Dudley, Nigel; Hockings, Marc

    2016-09-02

    Conservation relies heavily on protected areas (PAs) maintaining their key biodiversity features to meet global biodiversity conservation goals. However, PAs have had variable success, with many failing to fully maintain their biodiversity features. The current literature concerning what drives variability in PA performance is rapidly expanding but unclear, sometimes contradictory, and spread across multiple disciplines. A clear understanding of the drivers of successful biodiversity conservation in PAs is necessary to make them fully effective. Here, we conduct a comprehensive assessment of the current state of knowledge concerning the drivers of biological outcomes within PAs, focusing on those that can be addressed at local scales. We evaluate evidence in support of potential drivers to identify those that enable more successful outcomes and those that impede success and provide a synthetic review. Interactions are discussed where they are known, and we highlight gaps in understanding. We find that elements of PA design, management, and local and national governance challenges, species and system ecology, and sociopolitical context can all influence outcomes. Adjusting PA management to focus on actions and policies that influence the key drivers identified here could improve global biodiversity outcomes.

  15. Local Perspectives on Environmental Insecurity and Its Influence on Illegal Biodiversity Exploitation.

    PubMed

    Gore, Meredith L; Lute, Michelle L; Ratsimbazafy, Jonah H; Rajaonson, Andry

    2016-01-01

    Environmental insecurity is a source and outcome of biodiversity declines and social conflict. One challenge to scaling insecurity reduction policies is that empirical evidence about local attitudes is overwhelmingly missing. We set three objectives: determine how local people rank risk associated with different sources of environmental insecurity; assess perceptions of environmental insecurity, biodiversity exploitation, myths of nature and risk management preferences; and explore relationships between perceptions and biodiversity exploitation. We conducted interviews (N = 88) with residents of Madagascar's Torotorofotsy Protected Area, 2014. Risk perceptions had a moderate effect on perceptions of environmental insecurity. We found no effects of environmental insecurity on biodiversity exploitation. Results offer one if not the first exploration of local perceptions of illegal biodiversity exploitation and environmental security. Local people's perception of risk seriousness associated with illegal biodiversity exploitation such as lemur hunting (low overall) may not reflect perceptions of policy-makers (considered to be high). Discord is a key entry point for attention.

  16. Biodiversity

    SciTech Connect

    Wilson, E.O.; Peter, F.M.

    1988-01-01

    In tropical forests, on coral reefs, and in other threatened habitats, countless plant, animal, and microbial species face possible extinction - their names unknown, their numbers uncounted, their value unreckoned. Although popular attention has focused on the plight of more visible and widely known species like the whooping crane or the African elephant, most-experts agree that the loss of less-obvious organisms could be much more devastating. This is the subject of the volume. It calls attention to a most urgent global problem: the rapidly accelerating loss of plant and animal species to increasing human-population pressure and the demands of economic development. The book explores biodiversity from a wide variety of viewpoints.

  17. Recent Trends in Local-Scale Marine Biodiversity Reflect Community Structure and Human Impacts.

    PubMed

    Elahi, Robin; O'Connor, Mary I; Byrnes, Jarrett E K; Dunic, Jillian; Eriksson, Britas Klemens; Hensel, Marc J S; Kearns, Patrick J

    2015-07-20

    The modern biodiversity crisis reflects global extinctions and local introductions. Human activities have dramatically altered rates and scales of processes that regulate biodiversity at local scales. Reconciling the threat of global biodiversity loss with recent evidence of stability at fine spatial scales is a major challenge and requires a nuanced approach to biodiversity change that integrates ecological understanding. With a new dataset of 471 diversity time series spanning from 1962 to 2015 from marine coastal ecosystems, we tested (1) whether biodiversity changed at local scales in recent decades, and (2) whether we can ignore ecological context (e.g., proximate human impacts, trophic level, spatial scale) and still make informative inferences regarding local change. We detected a predominant signal of increasing species richness in coastal systems since 1962 in our dataset, though net species loss was associated with localized effects of anthropogenic impacts. Our geographically extensive dataset is unlikely to be a random sample of marine coastal habitats; impacted sites (3% of our time series) were underrepresented relative to their global presence. These local-scale patterns do not contradict the prospect of accelerating global extinctions but are consistent with local species loss in areas with direct human impacts and increases in diversity due to invasions and range expansions in lower impact areas. Attempts to detect and understand local biodiversity trends are incomplete without information on local human activities and ecological context.

  18. Biodiversity

    SciTech Connect

    Dobson, A. ); Carper, R. )

    1993-10-30

    Traditional herbalists act as a first-level screen for plants which may contain chemicals with significant pharmaceutical potential. Unfortunately, the destruction of rain forests is likely to lead to the extinction of many plant species before their potential can be explored. 165,000 km[sup 2] of tropical forest and 90,000 km[sup 2] of range land are destroyed or degraded each year, an annual attrition rate of about 1% for tropical forest. If these losses continue until only land set aside in parks is left, 66% of plant and 69% of animal species may be lost. The burning of forests to clear land for human settlement also makes a significant contribution to the greenhouse gases that are raising global mean temperatures. There are synergisms--here between rainforest destruction, loss of biodiversity, and global climate change--with potential impacts on health. Some aspects will be explored more fully in the contributions on vector-borne diseases and direct impacts and in the collaborative review of monitoring with which the series ends.

  19. Overlooked Mountain Rock Pools in Deserts Are Critical Local Hotspots of Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Vale, Cândida Gomes; Pimm, Stuart L.; Brito, José Carlos

    2015-01-01

    Background The world is undergoing exceptional biodiversity loss. Most conservation efforts target biodiversity hotspots at large scales. Such approach overlooks small-sized local hotspots, which may be rich in endemic and highly threatened species. We explore the importance of mountain rock pools (gueltas) as local biodiversity hotspots in the Sahara-Sahel. Specifically, we considered how many vertebrates (total and endemics) use gueltas, what factors predict species richness, and which gueltas are of most priority for conservation. We expected to provide management recommendations, improve local biodiversity conservation, and simultaneously contribute with a framework for future enhancement of local communities’ economy. The identification of local hotspots of biodiversity is important for revaluating global conservation priorities. Methodology/Principal Findings We quantified the number of vertebrate species from each taxonomic group and endemics present in 69 gueltas in Mauritania, then compared these with species present in a surrounding area and recorded in the country. We evaluated the predictors of species number’s present in each guelta through a multiple regression model. We ranked gueltas by their priority for conservation taking into account the percentage of endemics and threats to each guelta. Within a mere aggregate extent of 43 ha, gueltas hold about 32% and 78% of the total taxa analysed and endemics of Mauritania, respectively. The number of species present in each guelta increased with the primary productivity and area of gueltas and occurrence of permanent water. Droughts and human activities threaten gueltas, while 64% of them are currently unprotected. Conclusion/Significance Gueltas are crucial for local biodiversity conservation and human activities. They require urgent management plans in Mauritania’s mountains. They could provide refugia under climate change being important for long-term conservation of Sahara-Sahel biodiversity

  20. Biological science learning model based on Turgo's local wisdom on managing biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Anwari, Nahdi, Maizer Said; Sulistyowati, Eka

    2016-02-01

    Local wisdom as product of local knowledge has been giving a local context in science development. Local wisdom is important to connect scientific theories and local conditions; hence science could be accessed by common people. Using local wisdom as a model for learning science enables students to build contextual learning, hence learning science becomes more meaningful and becomes more accessible for students in a local community. Based on this consideration, therefore, this research developed a model for learning biology based on Turgo's local wisdom on managing biodiversity. For this purpose, Turgo's biodiversity was mapped, and any local values that are co-existing with the biodiversity were recorded. All of these informations were, then, used as a hypohetical model for developing materials for teaching biology in a senior high school adjacent to Turgo. This research employed a qualitative method. We combined questionnaries, interviews and observation to gather the data. We found that Turgo community has been practicing local wisdom on using traditional plants for many uses, including land management and practicing rituals and traditional ceremonies. There were local values that they embrace which enable them to manage the nature wisely. After being cross-referenced with literature regarding educational philoshophy, educational theories and teachings, and biology curriculum for Indonesia's senior high school, we concluded that Turgo's local wisdom on managing biodiversity can be recommended to be used as learning materials and sources for biological learning in schools.

  1. Local Perspectives on Environmental Insecurity and Its Influence on Illegal Biodiversity Exploitation

    PubMed Central

    Gore, Meredith L.; Lute, Michelle L.; Ratsimbazafy, Jonah H.; Rajaonson, Andry

    2016-01-01

    Environmental insecurity is a source and outcome of biodiversity declines and social conflict. One challenge to scaling insecurity reduction policies is that empirical evidence about local attitudes is overwhelmingly missing. We set three objectives: determine how local people rank risk associated with different sources of environmental insecurity; assess perceptions of environmental insecurity, biodiversity exploitation, myths of nature and risk management preferences; and explore relationships between perceptions and biodiversity exploitation. We conducted interviews (N = 88) with residents of Madagascar’s Torotorofotsy Protected Area, 2014. Risk perceptions had a moderate effect on perceptions of environmental insecurity. We found no effects of environmental insecurity on biodiversity exploitation. Results offer one if not the first exploration of local perceptions of illegal biodiversity exploitation and environmental security. Local people’s perception of risk seriousness associated with illegal biodiversity exploitation such as lemur hunting (low overall) may not reflect perceptions of policy-makers (considered to be high). Discord is a key entry point for attention. PMID:27082106

  2. How to maximally support local and regional biodiversity in applied conservation? Insights from pond management.

    PubMed

    Lemmens, Pieter; Mergeay, Joachim; De Bie, Tom; Van Wichelen, Jeroen; De Meester, Luc; Declerck, Steven A J

    2013-01-01

    Biodiversity and nature values in anthropogenic landscapes often depend on land use practices and management. Evaluations of the association between management and biodiversity remain, however, comparatively scarce, especially in aquatic systems. Furthermore, studies also tend to focus on a limited set of organism groups at the local scale, whereas a multi-group approach at the landscape scale is to be preferred. This study aims to investigate the effect of pond management on the diversity of multiple aquatic organism groups (e.g. phytoplankton, zooplankton, several groups of macro-invertebrates, submerged and emergent macrophytes) at local and regional spatial scales. For this purpose, we performed a field study of 39 shallow man-made ponds representing five different management types. Our results indicate that fish stock management and periodic pond drainage are crucial drivers of pond biodiversity. Furthermore, this study provides insight in how the management of eutrophied ponds can contribute to aquatic biodiversity. A combination of regular draining of ponds with efforts to keep ponds free of fish seems to be highly beneficial for the biodiversity of many groups of aquatic organisms at local and regional scales. Regular draining combined with a stocking of fish at low biomass is also preferable to infrequent draining and lack of fish stock control. These insights are essential for the development of conservation programs that aim long-term maintenance of regional biodiversity in pond areas across Europe.

  3. Local versus landscape spatial influence on biodiversity: a case study across five European industrialized areas.

    PubMed

    Piano, E; Isaia, M; Falasco, E; La Morgia, V; Soldato, G; Bona, F

    2017-03-01

    Land use change-mostly habitat loss and fragmentation-has been recognized as one of the major drivers of biodiversity loss worldwide. According to the habitat amount hypothesis, these phenomena are mostly driven by the habitat area effect. As a result, species richness is a function of both the extent of suitable habitats and their availability in the surrounding landscape, irrespective of the dimension and isolation of patches of suitable habitat. In this context, we tested how the extent of natural areas, selected as proxies of suitable habitats for biodiversity, influences species richness in highly anthropogenic landscapes. We defined five circular sampling areas of 5 km radius, including both natural reserves and anthropogenic land uses, centred in five major industrial sites in France, Italy and Germany. We monitored different biodiversity indicators for both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, including breeding birds, diurnal butterflies, grassland vegetation, odonata, amphibians, aquatic plants and benthic diatoms. We studied the response of the different indicators to the extent of natural land uses in the sampling area (local effect) and in the surrounding landscape (landscape effect), identified as a peripheral ring encircling the sampling area. Results showed a positive response of five out of seven biodiversity indicators, with aquatic plants and odonata responding positively to the local effect, while birds, vegetation and diatoms showed a positive response to the landscape effect. Diatoms also showed a significant combined response to both effects. We conclude that surrounding landscapes act as important biodiversity sources, increasing the local biodiversity in highly anthropogenic contexts.

  4. Evaluating rapid participatory rural appraisal as an assessment of ethnoecological knowledge and local biodiversity patterns.

    PubMed

    Mueller, Jocelyn G; Assanou, Issoufou Hassane Bil; Dan Guimbo, Iro; Almedom, Astier M

    2010-02-01

    There is a pressing need to find both locally and globally relevant tools to measure and compare biodiversity patterns. Traditional ecological knowledge (TEK) is important to biodiversity monitoring, but has a contested role in preliminary biodiversity assessments. We examined rapid participatory rural appraisal (rPRA) (a tool commonly used for local needs assessments) as an alternative to surveys of vascular plants conducted by people with local knowledge. We used rPRA to determine the local-knowledge consensus on the average richness, diversity, and height of local grasses and trees in three habitats surrounding Boumba, Niger, bordering Park-W. We then conducted our own vascular plant surveys to collect information on plant richness, abundance, and structure. Using a qualitative ranking, we compared TEK-based assessments of diversity patterns with our survey-based assessments. The TEK-based assessments matched survey-based assessments on measures of height and density for grasses and trees and tree richness. The two assessments correlated poorly on herb richness and Simpson's D value for both trees and grasses. Plant life form and gender of the participant affected the way diversity patterns were described, which highlights the usefulness of TEK in explaining local realities and indicates limitations of using TEK as a large-scale assessment tool. Our results demonstrate that rPRA can serve to combine local-knowledge inquiry with scientific study at a cost lower than vascular plant surveys and demonstrates a useful blunt tool for preliminary biodiversity assessment.

  5. Biodiversity: Who Knows, Who Cares?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zemits, Birut

    2006-01-01

    Biodiversity is an abstract concept, attracting various responses from different people according to where they have come from and what ecosystems they have been closely linked to. In theory, most people would agree that protecting biodiversity is an important process, but in practice, few people commit to actions on a local level. This paper…

  6. Global meta-analysis reveals no net change in local-scale plant biodiversity over time

    PubMed Central

    Vellend, Mark; Baeten, Lander; Myers-Smith, Isla H.; Elmendorf, Sarah C.; Beauséjour, Robin; Brown, Carissa D.; De Frenne, Pieter; Verheyen, Kris; Wipf, Sonja

    2013-01-01

    Global biodiversity is in decline. This is of concern for aesthetic and ethical reasons, but possibly also for practical reasons, as suggested by experimental studies, mostly with plants, showing that biodiversity reductions in small study plots can lead to compromised ecosystem function. However, inferring that ecosystem functions will decline due to biodiversity loss in the real world rests on the untested assumption that such loss is actually occurring at these small scales in nature. Using a global database of 168 published studies and >16,000 nonexperimental, local-scale vegetation plots, we show that mean temporal change in species diversity over periods of 5–261 y is not different from zero, with increases at least as likely as declines over time. Sites influenced primarily by plant species’ invasions showed a tendency for declines in species richness, whereas sites undergoing postdisturbance succession showed increases in richness over time. Other distinctions among studies had little influence on temporal richness trends. Although maximizing diversity is likely important for maintaining ecosystem function in intensely managed systems such as restored grasslands or tree plantations, the clear lack of any general tendency for plant biodiversity to decline at small scales in nature directly contradicts the key assumption linking experimental results to ecosystem function as a motivation for biodiversity conservation in nature. How often real world changes in the diversity and composition of plant communities at the local scale cause ecosystem function to deteriorate, or actually to improve, remains unknown and is in critical need of further study. PMID:24167259

  7. Global meta-analysis reveals no net change in local-scale plant biodiversity over time.

    PubMed

    Vellend, Mark; Baeten, Lander; Myers-Smith, Isla H; Elmendorf, Sarah C; Beauséjour, Robin; Brown, Carissa D; De Frenne, Pieter; Verheyen, Kris; Wipf, Sonja

    2013-11-26

    Global biodiversity is in decline. This is of concern for aesthetic and ethical reasons, but possibly also for practical reasons, as suggested by experimental studies, mostly with plants, showing that biodiversity reductions in small study plots can lead to compromised ecosystem function. However, inferring that ecosystem functions will decline due to biodiversity loss in the real world rests on the untested assumption that such loss is actually occurring at these small scales in nature. Using a global database of 168 published studies and >16,000 nonexperimental, local-scale vegetation plots, we show that mean temporal change in species diversity over periods of 5-261 y is not different from zero, with increases at least as likely as declines over time. Sites influenced primarily by plant species' invasions showed a tendency for declines in species richness, whereas sites undergoing postdisturbance succession showed increases in richness over time. Other distinctions among studies had little influence on temporal richness trends. Although maximizing diversity is likely important for maintaining ecosystem function in intensely managed systems such as restored grasslands or tree plantations, the clear lack of any general tendency for plant biodiversity to decline at small scales in nature directly contradicts the key assumption linking experimental results to ecosystem function as a motivation for biodiversity conservation in nature. How often real world changes in the diversity and composition of plant communities at the local scale cause ecosystem function to deteriorate, or actually to improve, remains unknown and is in critical need of further study.

  8. A standard lexicon for biodiversity conservation: unified classifications of threats and actions.

    PubMed

    Salafsky, Nick; Salzer, Daniel; Stattersfield, Alison J; Hilton-Taylor, Craig; Neugarten, Rachel; Butchart, Stuart H M; Collen, Ben; Cox, Neil; Master, Lawrence L; O'Connor, Sheila; Wilkie, David

    2008-08-01

    An essential foundation of any science is a standard lexicon. Any given conservation project can be described in terms of the biodiversity targets, direct threats, contributing factors at the project site, and the conservation actions that the project team is employing to change the situation. These common elements can be linked in a causal chain, which represents a theory of change about how the conservation actions are intended to bring about desired project outcomes. If project teams want to describe and share their work and learn from one another, they need a standard and precise lexicon to specifically describe each node along this chain. To date, there have been several independent efforts to develop standard classifications for the direct threats that affect biodiversity and the conservation actions required to counteract these threats. Recognizing that it is far more effective to have only one accepted global scheme, we merged these separate efforts into unified classifications of threats and actions, which we present here. Each classification is a hierarchical listing of terms and associated definitions. The classifications are comprehensive and exclusive at the upper levels of the hierarchy, expandable at the lower levels, and simple, consistent, and scalable at all levels. We tested these classifications by applying them post hoc to 1191 threatened bird species and 737 conservation projects. Almost all threats and actions could be assigned to the new classification systems, save for some cases lacking detailed information. Furthermore, the new classification systems provided an improved way of analyzing and comparing information across projects when compared with earlier systems. We believe that widespread adoption of these classifications will help practitioners more systematically identify threats and appropriate actions, managers to more efficiently set priorities and allocate resources, and most important, facilitate cross-project learning and the

  9. Action Research Localization in China: Three Cases

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bai, Yimin

    2009-01-01

    Since the introduction of the action research into China in the 1980s, especially since the start of the twenty-first century, Chinese education researchers have been trying to localize it in relation to the backdrop of the national curriculum reform in basic education. This article presents three cases in which educators aimed for a conscious…

  10. Intersectoral action: local governments promoting health.

    PubMed

    Rantala, Riikka; Bortz, Martin; Armada, Francisco

    2014-06-01

    Many local governments around the world promote health through intersectoral action, but to date there has been little systematic evidence of these experiences. To bridge this gap, the World Health Organization Centre for Health Development conducted a study in 2011-2013 on intersectoral action for health (ISA) at local government level. A total of 25 cases were included in the final review. Various approaches were used to carry out ISA by local governments in low-, middle- and high-income countries. Several common facilitating factors and challenges were identified: national and international influences, the local political context, public participation and use of support mechanisms such as coordination structures, funding mechanisms and mandates, engaging sectors through vertical and horizontal collaboration, information sharing, monitoring and evaluation, and equity considerations. The literature on certain aspects of ISA, such as monitoring and evaluation and health equity, was found to be relatively thin. Also, the articles used for the study varied as regards their depth of information and often focused on the point of view of one sector. More in-depth studies of these issues covering multiple angles and different ISA mechanisms could be useful. Local governments can offer a unique arena for implementing intersectoral activities, especially because of their proximity to the people, but more practical guidance to better facilitate local government ISA processes is still needed.

  11. Local participation in biodiversity conservation initiatives: a comparative analysis of different models in South East Mexico.

    PubMed

    Méndez-López, María Elena; García-Frapolli, Eduardo; Pritchard, Diana J; Sánchez González, María Consuelo; Ruiz-Mallén, Isabel; Porter-Bolland, Luciana; Reyes-Garcia, Victoria

    2014-12-01

    In Mexico, biodiversity conservation is primarily implemented through three schemes: 1) protected areas, 2) payment-based schemes for environmental services, and 3) community-based conservation, officially recognized in some cases as Indigenous and Community Conserved Areas. In this paper we compare levels of local participation across conservation schemes. Through a survey applied to 670 households across six communities in Southeast Mexico, we document local participation during the creation, design, and implementation of the management plan of different conservation schemes. To analyze the data, we first calculated the frequency of participation at the three different stages mentioned, then created a participation index that characterizes the presence and relative intensity of local participation for each conservation scheme. Results showed that there is a low level of local participation across all the conservation schemes explored in this study. Nonetheless, the payment for environmental services had the highest local participation while the protected areas had the least. Our findings suggest that local participation in biodiversity conservation schemes is not a predictable outcome of a specific (community-based) model, thus implying that other factors might be important in determining local participation. This has implications on future strategies that seek to encourage local involvement in conservation.

  12. Biodiversity Monitoring at the Tonle Sap Lake of Cambodia: A Comparative Assessment of Local Methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Seak, Sophat; Schmidt-Vogt, Dietrich; Thapa, Gopal B.

    2012-10-01

    This paper assesses local biodiversity monitoring methods practiced in the Tonle Sap Lake of Cambodia. For the assessment we used the following criteria: methodological rigor, perceived cost, ease of use (user friendliness), compatibility with existing activities, and effectiveness of intervention. Constraints and opportunities for execution of the methods were also considered. Information was collected by use of: (1) key informant interview, (2) focus group discussion, and (3) researcher's observation. The monitoring methods for fish, birds, reptiles, mammals and vegetation practiced in the research area have their unique characteristics of generating data on biodiversity and biological resources. Most of the methods, however, serve the purpose of monitoring biological resources rather than biodiversity. There is potential that the information gained through local monitoring methods can provide input for long-term management and strategic planning. In order to realize this potential, the local monitoring methods should be better integrated with each other, adjusted to existing norms and regulations, and institutionalized within community-based organization structures.

  13. The PREDICTS database: a global database of how local terrestrial biodiversity responds to human impacts

    PubMed Central

    Hudson, Lawrence N; Newbold, Tim; Contu, Sara; Hill, Samantha L L; Lysenko, Igor; De Palma, Adriana; Phillips, Helen R P; Senior, Rebecca A; Bennett, Dominic J; Booth, Hollie; Choimes, Argyrios; Correia, David L P; Day, Julie; Echeverría-Londoño, Susy; Garon, Morgan; Harrison, Michelle L K; Ingram, Daniel J; Jung, Martin; Kemp, Victoria; Kirkpatrick, Lucinda; Martin, Callum D; Pan, Yuan; White, Hannah J; Aben, Job; Abrahamczyk, Stefan; Adum, Gilbert B; Aguilar-Barquero, Virginia; Aizen, Marcelo A; Ancrenaz, Marc; Arbeláez-Cortés, Enrique; Armbrecht, Inge; Azhar, Badrul; Azpiroz, Adrián B; Baeten, Lander; Báldi, András; Banks, John E; Barlow, Jos; Batáry, Péter; Bates, Adam J; Bayne, Erin M; Beja, Pedro; Berg, Åke; Berry, Nicholas J; Bicknell, Jake E; Bihn, Jochen H; Böhning-Gaese, Katrin; Boekhout, Teun; Boutin, Céline; Bouyer, Jérémy; Brearley, Francis Q; Brito, Isabel; Brunet, Jörg; Buczkowski, Grzegorz; Buscardo, Erika; Cabra-García, Jimmy; Calviño-Cancela, María; Cameron, Sydney A; Cancello, Eliana M; Carrijo, Tiago F; Carvalho, Anelena L; Castro, Helena; Castro-Luna, Alejandro A; Cerda, Rolando; Cerezo, Alexis; Chauvat, Matthieu; Clarke, Frank M; Cleary, Daniel F R; Connop, Stuart P; D'Aniello, Biagio; da Silva, Pedro Giovâni; Darvill, Ben; Dauber, Jens; Dejean, Alain; Diekötter, Tim; Dominguez-Haydar, Yamileth; Dormann, Carsten F; Dumont, Bertrand; Dures, Simon G; Dynesius, Mats; Edenius, Lars; Elek, Zoltán; Entling, Martin H; Farwig, Nina; Fayle, Tom M; Felicioli, Antonio; Felton, Annika M; Ficetola, Gentile F; Filgueiras, Bruno K C; Fonte, Steven J; Fraser, Lauchlan H; Fukuda, Daisuke; Furlani, Dario; Ganzhorn, Jörg U; Garden, Jenni G; Gheler-Costa, Carla; Giordani, Paolo; Giordano, Simonetta; Gottschalk, Marco S; Goulson, Dave; Gove, Aaron D; Grogan, James; Hanley, Mick E; Hanson, Thor; Hashim, Nor R; Hawes, Joseph E; Hébert, Christian; Helden, Alvin J; Henden, John-André; Hernández, Lionel; Herzog, Felix; Higuera-Diaz, Diego; Hilje, Branko; Horgan, Finbarr G; Horváth, Roland; Hylander, Kristoffer; Isaacs-Cubides, Paola; Ishitani, Masahiro; Jacobs, Carmen T; Jaramillo, Víctor J; Jauker, Birgit; Jonsell, Mats; Jung, Thomas S; Kapoor, Vena; Kati, Vassiliki; Katovai, Eric; Kessler, Michael; Knop, Eva; Kolb, Annette; Kőrösi, Ádám; Lachat, Thibault; Lantschner, Victoria; Le Féon, Violette; LeBuhn, Gretchen; Légaré, Jean-Philippe; Letcher, Susan G; Littlewood, Nick A; López-Quintero, Carlos A; Louhaichi, Mounir; Lövei, Gabor L; Lucas-Borja, Manuel Esteban; Luja, Victor H; Maeto, Kaoru; Magura, Tibor; Mallari, Neil Aldrin; Marin-Spiotta, Erika; Marshall, E J P; Martínez, Eliana; Mayfield, Margaret M; Mikusinski, Grzegorz; Milder, Jeffrey C; Miller, James R; Morales, Carolina L; Muchane, Mary N; Muchane, Muchai; Naidoo, Robin; Nakamura, Akihiro; Naoe, Shoji; Nates-Parra, Guiomar; Navarrete Gutierrez, Dario A; Neuschulz, Eike L; Noreika, Norbertas; Norfolk, Olivia; Noriega, Jorge Ari; Nöske, Nicole M; O'Dea, Niall; Oduro, William; Ofori-Boateng, Caleb; Oke, Chris O; Osgathorpe, Lynne M; Paritsis, Juan; Parra-H, Alejandro; Pelegrin, Nicolás; Peres, Carlos A; Persson, Anna S; Petanidou, Theodora; Phalan, Ben; Philips, T Keith; Poveda, Katja; Power, Eileen F; Presley, Steven J; Proença, Vânia; Quaranta, Marino; Quintero, Carolina; Redpath-Downing, Nicola A; Reid, J Leighton; Reis, Yana T; Ribeiro, Danilo B; Richardson, Barbara A; Richardson, Michael J; Robles, Carolina A; Römbke, Jörg; Romero-Duque, Luz Piedad; Rosselli, Loreta; Rossiter, Stephen J; Roulston, T'ai H; Rousseau, Laurent; Sadler, Jonathan P; Sáfián, Szabolcs; Saldaña-Vázquez, Romeo A; Samnegård, Ulrika; Schüepp, Christof; Schweiger, Oliver; Sedlock, Jodi L; Shahabuddin, Ghazala; Sheil, Douglas; Silva, Fernando A B; Slade, Eleanor M; Smith-Pardo, Allan H; Sodhi, Navjot S; Somarriba, Eduardo J; Sosa, Ramón A; Stout, Jane C; Struebig, Matthew J; Sung, Yik-Hei; Threlfall, Caragh G; Tonietto, Rebecca; Tóthmérész, Béla; Tscharntke, Teja; Turner, Edgar C; Tylianakis, Jason M; Vanbergen, Adam J; Vassilev, Kiril; Verboven, Hans A F; Vergara, Carlos H; Vergara, Pablo M; Verhulst, Jort; Walker, Tony R; Wang, Yanping; Watling, James I; Wells, Konstans; Williams, Christopher D; Willig, Michael R; Woinarski, John C Z; Wolf, Jan H D; Woodcock, Ben A; Yu, Douglas W; Zaitsev, Andrey S; Collen, Ben; Ewers, Rob M; Mace, Georgina M; Purves, Drew W; Scharlemann, Jörn P W; Purvis, Andy

    2014-01-01

    Biodiversity continues to decline in the face of increasing anthropogenic pressures such as habitat destruction, exploitation, pollution and introduction of alien species. Existing global databases of species’ threat status or population time series are dominated by charismatic species. The collation of datasets with broad taxonomic and biogeographic extents, and that support computation of a range of biodiversity indicators, is necessary to enable better understanding of historical declines and to project – and avert – future declines. We describe and assess a new database of more than 1.6 million samples from 78 countries representing over 28,000 species, collated from existing spatial comparisons of local-scale biodiversity exposed to different intensities and types of anthropogenic pressures, from terrestrial sites around the world. The database contains measurements taken in 208 (of 814) ecoregions, 13 (of 14) biomes, 25 (of 35) biodiversity hotspots and 16 (of 17) megadiverse countries. The database contains more than 1% of the total number of all species described, and more than 1% of the described species within many taxonomic groups – including flowering plants, gymnosperms, birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, beetles, lepidopterans and hymenopterans. The dataset, which is still being added to, is therefore already considerably larger and more representative than those used by previous quantitative models of biodiversity trends and responses. The database is being assembled as part of the PREDICTS project (Projecting Responses of Ecological Diversity In Changing Terrestrial Systems – http://www.predicts.org.uk). We make site-level summary data available alongside this article. The full database will be publicly available in 2015. PMID:25558364

  14. The PREDICTS database: a global database of how local terrestrial biodiversity responds to human impacts.

    PubMed

    Hudson, Lawrence N; Newbold, Tim; Contu, Sara; Hill, Samantha L L; Lysenko, Igor; De Palma, Adriana; Phillips, Helen R P; Senior, Rebecca A; Bennett, Dominic J; Booth, Hollie; Choimes, Argyrios; Correia, David L P; Day, Julie; Echeverría-Londoño, Susy; Garon, Morgan; Harrison, Michelle L K; Ingram, Daniel J; Jung, Martin; Kemp, Victoria; Kirkpatrick, Lucinda; Martin, Callum D; Pan, Yuan; White, Hannah J; Aben, Job; Abrahamczyk, Stefan; Adum, Gilbert B; Aguilar-Barquero, Virginia; Aizen, Marcelo A; Ancrenaz, Marc; Arbeláez-Cortés, Enrique; Armbrecht, Inge; Azhar, Badrul; Azpiroz, Adrián B; Baeten, Lander; Báldi, András; Banks, John E; Barlow, Jos; Batáry, Péter; Bates, Adam J; Bayne, Erin M; Beja, Pedro; Berg, Åke; Berry, Nicholas J; Bicknell, Jake E; Bihn, Jochen H; Böhning-Gaese, Katrin; Boekhout, Teun; Boutin, Céline; Bouyer, Jérémy; Brearley, Francis Q; Brito, Isabel; Brunet, Jörg; Buczkowski, Grzegorz; Buscardo, Erika; Cabra-García, Jimmy; Calviño-Cancela, María; Cameron, Sydney A; Cancello, Eliana M; Carrijo, Tiago F; Carvalho, Anelena L; Castro, Helena; Castro-Luna, Alejandro A; Cerda, Rolando; Cerezo, Alexis; Chauvat, Matthieu; Clarke, Frank M; Cleary, Daniel F R; Connop, Stuart P; D'Aniello, Biagio; da Silva, Pedro Giovâni; Darvill, Ben; Dauber, Jens; Dejean, Alain; Diekötter, Tim; Dominguez-Haydar, Yamileth; Dormann, Carsten F; Dumont, Bertrand; Dures, Simon G; Dynesius, Mats; Edenius, Lars; Elek, Zoltán; Entling, Martin H; Farwig, Nina; Fayle, Tom M; Felicioli, Antonio; Felton, Annika M; Ficetola, Gentile F; Filgueiras, Bruno K C; Fonte, Steven J; Fraser, Lauchlan H; Fukuda, Daisuke; Furlani, Dario; Ganzhorn, Jörg U; Garden, Jenni G; Gheler-Costa, Carla; Giordani, Paolo; Giordano, Simonetta; Gottschalk, Marco S; Goulson, Dave; Gove, Aaron D; Grogan, James; Hanley, Mick E; Hanson, Thor; Hashim, Nor R; Hawes, Joseph E; Hébert, Christian; Helden, Alvin J; Henden, John-André; Hernández, Lionel; Herzog, Felix; Higuera-Diaz, Diego; Hilje, Branko; Horgan, Finbarr G; Horváth, Roland; Hylander, Kristoffer; Isaacs-Cubides, Paola; Ishitani, Masahiro; Jacobs, Carmen T; Jaramillo, Víctor J; Jauker, Birgit; Jonsell, Mats; Jung, Thomas S; Kapoor, Vena; Kati, Vassiliki; Katovai, Eric; Kessler, Michael; Knop, Eva; Kolb, Annette; Kőrösi, Ádám; Lachat, Thibault; Lantschner, Victoria; Le Féon, Violette; LeBuhn, Gretchen; Légaré, Jean-Philippe; Letcher, Susan G; Littlewood, Nick A; López-Quintero, Carlos A; Louhaichi, Mounir; Lövei, Gabor L; Lucas-Borja, Manuel Esteban; Luja, Victor H; Maeto, Kaoru; Magura, Tibor; Mallari, Neil Aldrin; Marin-Spiotta, Erika; Marshall, E J P; Martínez, Eliana; Mayfield, Margaret M; Mikusinski, Grzegorz; Milder, Jeffrey C; Miller, James R; Morales, Carolina L; Muchane, Mary N; Muchane, Muchai; Naidoo, Robin; Nakamura, Akihiro; Naoe, Shoji; Nates-Parra, Guiomar; Navarrete Gutierrez, Dario A; Neuschulz, Eike L; Noreika, Norbertas; Norfolk, Olivia; Noriega, Jorge Ari; Nöske, Nicole M; O'Dea, Niall; Oduro, William; Ofori-Boateng, Caleb; Oke, Chris O; Osgathorpe, Lynne M; Paritsis, Juan; Parra-H, Alejandro; Pelegrin, Nicolás; Peres, Carlos A; Persson, Anna S; Petanidou, Theodora; Phalan, Ben; Philips, T Keith; Poveda, Katja; Power, Eileen F; Presley, Steven J; Proença, Vânia; Quaranta, Marino; Quintero, Carolina; Redpath-Downing, Nicola A; Reid, J Leighton; Reis, Yana T; Ribeiro, Danilo B; Richardson, Barbara A; Richardson, Michael J; Robles, Carolina A; Römbke, Jörg; Romero-Duque, Luz Piedad; Rosselli, Loreta; Rossiter, Stephen J; Roulston, T'ai H; Rousseau, Laurent; Sadler, Jonathan P; Sáfián, Szabolcs; Saldaña-Vázquez, Romeo A; Samnegård, Ulrika; Schüepp, Christof; Schweiger, Oliver; Sedlock, Jodi L; Shahabuddin, Ghazala; Sheil, Douglas; Silva, Fernando A B; Slade, Eleanor M; Smith-Pardo, Allan H; Sodhi, Navjot S; Somarriba, Eduardo J; Sosa, Ramón A; Stout, Jane C; Struebig, Matthew J; Sung, Yik-Hei; Threlfall, Caragh G; Tonietto, Rebecca; Tóthmérész, Béla; Tscharntke, Teja; Turner, Edgar C; Tylianakis, Jason M; Vanbergen, Adam J; Vassilev, Kiril; Verboven, Hans A F; Vergara, Carlos H; Vergara, Pablo M; Verhulst, Jort; Walker, Tony R; Wang, Yanping; Watling, James I; Wells, Konstans; Williams, Christopher D; Willig, Michael R; Woinarski, John C Z; Wolf, Jan H D; Woodcock, Ben A; Yu, Douglas W; Zaitsev, Andrey S; Collen, Ben; Ewers, Rob M; Mace, Georgina M; Purves, Drew W; Scharlemann, Jörn P W; Purvis, Andy

    2014-12-01

    Biodiversity continues to decline in the face of increasing anthropogenic pressures such as habitat destruction, exploitation, pollution and introduction of alien species. Existing global databases of species' threat status or population time series are dominated by charismatic species. The collation of datasets with broad taxonomic and biogeographic extents, and that support computation of a range of biodiversity indicators, is necessary to enable better understanding of historical declines and to project - and avert - future declines. We describe and assess a new database of more than 1.6 million samples from 78 countries representing over 28,000 species, collated from existing spatial comparisons of local-scale biodiversity exposed to different intensities and types of anthropogenic pressures, from terrestrial sites around the world. The database contains measurements taken in 208 (of 814) ecoregions, 13 (of 14) biomes, 25 (of 35) biodiversity hotspots and 16 (of 17) megadiverse countries. The database contains more than 1% of the total number of all species described, and more than 1% of the described species within many taxonomic groups - including flowering plants, gymnosperms, birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, beetles, lepidopterans and hymenopterans. The dataset, which is still being added to, is therefore already considerably larger and more representative than those used by previous quantitative models of biodiversity trends and responses. The database is being assembled as part of the PREDICTS project (Projecting Responses of Ecological Diversity In Changing Terrestrial Systems - http://www.predicts.org.uk). We make site-level summary data available alongside this article. The full database will be publicly available in 2015.

  15. Evaluating the success of conservation actions in safeguarding tropical forest biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Brooks, Thomas M; Wright, S Joseph; Sheil, Douglas

    2009-12-01

    We reviewed the evidence on the extent and efficacy of conservation of tropical forest biodiversity for each of the classes of conservation action defined by the new International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) classification. Protected areas are the most tested conservation approach, and a number of studies show they are generally effective in slowing deforestation. There is some documentation of the extent of sustainable timber management in tropical forest, but little information on other landscape-conservation tactics. The extent and effectiveness of ex situ species conservation is quite well known. Forty-one tropical-forest species now survive only in captivity. Other single-species conservation actions are not as well documented. The potential of policy mechanisms, such as international conventions and provision of funds, to slow extinctions in tropical forests is considerable, but the effects of policy are difficult to measure. Finally, interventions to promote tropical conservation by supporting education and livelihoods, providing incentives, and furthering capacity building are all thought to be important, but their extent and effectiveness remain poorly known. For birds, the best studied taxon, the sum of such conservation actions has averted one-fifth of the extinctions that would otherwise have occurred over the last century. Clearly, tropical forest conservation works, but more is needed, as is critical assessment of what works in what circumstances, if mass extinction is to be averted.

  16. Approaches to local climate action in Colorado

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Y. D.

    2011-12-01

    Though climate change is a global problem, the impacts are felt on the local scale; it follows that the solutions must come at the local level. Fortunately, many cities and municipalities are implementing climate mitigation (or climate action) policies and programs. However, they face many procedural and institutional barriers to their efforts, such of lack of expertise or data, limited human and financial resources, and lack of community engagement (Krause 2011). To address the first obstacle, thirteen in-depth case studies were done of successful model practices ("best practices") of climate action programs carried out by various cities, counties, and organizations in Colorado, and one outside Colorado, and developed into "how-to guides" for other municipalities to use. Research was conducted by reading documents (e.g. annual reports, community guides, city websites), email correspondence with program managers and city officials, and via phone interviews. The information gathered was then compiled into a series of reports containing a narrative description of the initiative; an overview of the plan elements (target audience and goals); implementation strategies and any indicators of success to date (e.g. GHG emissions reductions, cost savings); and the adoption or approval process, as well as community engagement efforts and marketing or messaging strategies. The types of programs covered were energy action plans, energy efficiency programs, renewable energy programs, and transportation and land use programs. Between the thirteen case studies, there was a range of approaches to implementing local climate action programs, examined along two dimensions: focus on climate change (whether it was direct/explicit or indirect/implicit) and extent of government authority. This benchmarking exercise affirmed the conventional wisdom propounded by Pitt (2010), that peer pressure (that is, the presence of neighboring jurisdictions with climate initiatives), the level of

  17. Social and ecological synergy: local rulemaking, forest livelihoods, and biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Persha, Lauren; Agrawal, Arun; Chhatre, Ashwini

    2011-03-25

    Causal pathways to achieve social and ecological benefits from forests are unclear, because there are few systematic multicountry empirical analyses that identify important factors and their complex relationships with social and ecological outcomes. This study examines biodiversity conservation and forest-based livelihood outcomes using a data set on 84 sites from six countries in East Africa and South Asia. We find both positive and negative relationships, leading to joint wins, losses, and trade-offs depending on specific contextual factors; participation in forest governance institutions by local forest users is strongly associated with jointly positive outcomes for forests in our study.

  18. Evolutionary biology in biodiversity science, conservation, and policy: a call to action.

    PubMed

    Hendry, Andrew P; Lohmann, Lúcia G; Conti, Elena; Cracraft, Joel; Crandall, Keith A; Faith, Daniel P; Häuser, Christoph; Joly, Carlos A; Kogure, Kazuhiro; Larigauderie, Anne; Magallón, Susana; Moritz, Craig; Tillier, Simon; Zardoya, Rafael; Prieur-Richard, Anne-Hélène; Walther, Bruno A; Yahara, Tetsukazu; Donoghue, Michael J

    2010-05-01

    Evolutionary biologists have long endeavored to document how many species exist on Earth, to understand the processes by which biodiversity waxes and wanes, to document and interpret spatial patterns of biodiversity, and to infer evolutionary relationships. Despite the great potential of this knowledge to improve biodiversity science, conservation, and policy, evolutionary biologists have generally devoted limited attention to these broader implications. Likewise, many workers in biodiversity science have underappreciated the fundamental relevance of evolutionary biology. The aim of this article is to summarize and illustrate some ways in which evolutionary biology is directly relevant. We do so in the context of four broad areas: (1) discovering and documenting biodiversity, (2) understanding the causes of diversification, (3) evaluating evolutionary responses to human disturbances, and (4) implications for ecological communities, ecosystems, and humans. We also introduce bioGENESIS, a new project within DIVERSITAS launched to explore the potential practical contributions of evolutionary biology. In addition to fostering the integration of evolutionary thinking into biodiversity science, bioGENESIS provides practical recommendations to policy makers for incorporating evolutionary perspectives into biodiversity agendas and conservation. We solicit your involvement in developing innovative ways of using evolutionary biology to better comprehend and stem the loss of biodiversity.

  19. Local scale comparisons of biodiversity as a test for global protected area ecological performance: a meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Coetzee, Bernard W T; Gaston, Kevin J; Chown, Steven L

    2014-01-01

    Terrestrial protected areas (PAs) are cornerstones of global biodiversity conservation. Their efficacy in terms of maintaining biodiversity is, however, much debated. Studies to date have been unable to provide a general answer as to PA conservation efficacy because of their typically restricted geographic and/or taxonomic focus, or qualitative approaches focusing on proxies for biodiversity, such as deforestation. Given the rarity of historical data to enable comparisons of biodiversity before/after PA establishment, many smaller scale studies over the past 30 years have directly compared biodiversity inside PAs to that of surrounding areas, which provides one measure of PA ecological performance. Here we use a meta-analysis of such studies (N = 86) to test if PAs contain higher biodiversity values than surrounding areas, and so assess their contribution to determining PA efficacy. We find that PAs generally have higher abundances of individual species, higher assemblage abundances, and higher species richness values compared with alternative land uses. Local scale studies in combination thus show that PAs retain more biodiversity than alternative land use areas. Nonetheless, much variation is present in the effect sizes, which underscores the context-specificity of PA efficacy.

  20. Assessment of Local Biodiversity Loss in Uranium Mining-Tales And Its Projections On Global Scale

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sharshenova, D.; Zhamangulova, N.

    2015-12-01

    In Min-Kush, northern Kyrgyzstan there are 8 mining tales with an estimate of 1 961 000 tones of industrial Uranium. Local ecosystem services have declined rapidly. We analyzed a terrestrial assemblage database of Uranium mine-tale to quantify local biodiversity responses to land use and environmental changes. In the worst-affected habitats species richness reduced by 95.7%, total abundance by 60.9% and rarefaction-based richness by 72.5%. We estimate that, regional mountain ecosystem affected by this pressure reduced average within-sample richness (by 17.01%), total abundance (16.5%) and rarefaction-based richness (14.5%). Business-as-usual scenarios are the widely practiced in the region and moreover, due to economic constraints country can not afford any mitigation scenarios. We project that biodiversity loss and ecosystem service impairment will spread in the region through ground water, soil, plants, animals and microorganisms at the rate of 1km/year. Entire Tian-Shan mountain chain will be in danger within next 5-10 years. Our preliminary data shows that local people live in this area developed various forms of cancer, and the rate of premature death is as high as 40%. Strong international scientific and socio-economic partnership is needed to develop models and predictions.

  1. Conservation Action Planning: Lessons learned from the St. Marys River watershed biodiversity conservation planning process

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Patterson, Tamatha A.; Grundel, Ralph

    2014-01-01

    Conservation Action Planning (CAP) is an adaptive management planning process refined by The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and embraced worldwide as the Open Standards for the Practice of Conservation. The CAP process facilitates open, multi-institutional collaboration on a common conservation agenda through organized actions and quantified results. While specifically designed for conservation efforts, the framework is adaptable and flexible to multiple scales and can be used for any collaborative planning effort. The CAP framework addresses inception; design and development of goals, measures, and strategies; and plan implementation and evaluation. The specific components of the CAP include defining the project scope and conservation targets; assessing the ecological viability; ascertaining threats and surrounding situation; identifying opportunities and designing strategies for action; and implementing actions and monitoring results. In 2007, TNC and a multidisciplinary graduate student team from the University of Michigan's School of Natural Resources and Environment initiated a CAP for the St. Marys River, the connecting channel between Lake Superior and Lake Huron, and its local watershed. The students not only gained experience in conservation planning, but also learned lessons that notably benefited the CAP process and were valuable for any successful collaborative effort—a dedicated core team improved product quality, accelerated the timeline, and provided necessary support for ongoing efforts; an academic approach in preparation for engagement in the planning process brought applicable scientific research to the forefront, enhanced workshop facilitation, and improved stakeholder participation; and early and continuous interactions with regional stakeholders improved cooperation and built a supportive network for collaboration.

  2. Plant Biodiversity. Plant Life in Action[TM]. Schlessinger Science Library. [Videotape].

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    2000

    What organisms have adapted to life in environments ranging from the ocean floor to desert sands, from frigid the tundra to the deepest, darkest jungle? None other than plants! From microscopic algae to the largest trees, millions of plant species have evolved in every habitat on the planet. In Plant Biodiversity, learn how plants developed in the…

  3. Can Environmental Education Actions Change Public Attitudes? An Example Using the Pond Habitat and Associated Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Sousa, Eunice; Quintino, Victor; Palhas, Jael; Rodrigues, Ana Maria; Teixeira, José

    2016-01-01

    Ponds provide vital ecological services. They are biodiversity hotspots and important breading sites for rare and endangered species, including amphibians and dragonflies. Nevertheless, their number is decreasing due to habitat degradation caused by human activities. The “Ponds with Life” environmental education project was developed to raise public awareness and engagement in the study of ponds by promoting the direct contact between the public and nature, researchers and pedagogical hands-on exploration activities. A pre-post- project survey was set-up to assess the effects of the project on the environmental consciousness, knowledge and attitude changes towards ponds and the associated biodiversity of school students aged 15 to 18. The survey questions were based on Likert scales and their pre-post project comparisons used an innovative multivariate hypothesis testing approach. The results showed that the project improved the students’ knowledge and attitudes towards ponds and associated biodiversity, especially the amphibians. Ponds can be found or constructed in urban areas and despite small sized, they proved to be interesting model habitats and living laboratories to foster environmental education, by encompassing a high number of species and a fast ecological succession. PMID:27148879

  4. Action Research for Educational Reform: Remodelling Action Research Theories and Practices in Local Contexts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Somekh, Bridget; Zeichner, Ken

    2009-01-01

    This paper explores how action research theories and practices are remodelled in local contexts and used to support educational reform. From an analysis of 46 publications from the period 2000-2008, five "variations" in the globalized theory and practice of action research are identified: action research in times of political upheaval and…

  5. Scientists, educators, and national standards: Action at the local level

    SciTech Connect

    1994-04-01

    This volume contains full papers presented at the Forum entitled Scientists, Educators, and National Standards- Action at the Local Level held April 14-15, 1994. Records for the database have been prepared for the individual reports contained herein.

  6. Adult Basic Skills: Developing a Local Action Plan.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Basic Skills Agency, London (England).

    This document presents advice from the United Kingdom's Basic Skills Agency regarding developing local action plans. The first 20% of the document defines basic skills and discusses the following action plan components: (1) an estimate of the area's need for basic skills training; (2) a target to reduce the area's estimated scale of need; (3)…

  7. Can Artificial Ecosystems Enhance Local Biodiversity? The Case of a Constructed Wetland in a Mediterranean Urban Context.

    PubMed

    De Martis, Gabriele; Mulas, Bonaria; Malavasi, Veronica; Marignani, Michela

    2016-05-01

    Constructed wetlands (CW) are considered a successful tool to treat wastewater in many countries: their success is mainly assessed observing the rate of pollution reduction, but CW can also contribute to the conservation of ecosystem services. Among the many ecosystem services provided, the biodiversity of CW has received less attention. The EcoSistema Filtro (ESF) of the Molentargius-Saline Regional Natural Park is a constructed wetland situated in Sardinia (Italy), built to filter treated wastewater, increase habitat diversity, and enhance local biodiversity. A floristic survey has been carried out yearly 1 year after the construction of the artificial ecosystem in 2004, observing the modification of the vascular flora composition in time. The flora of the ESF accounted for 54% of the whole Regional Park's flora; alien species amount to 12%; taxa of conservation concern are 6%. Comparing the data in the years, except for the biennium 2006/2007, we observed a continuous increase of species richness, together with an increase of endemics, species of conservation concern, and alien species too. Once the endemics appeared, they remained part of the flora, showing a good persistence in the artificial wetland. Included in a natural park, but trapped in a sprawling and fast growing urban context, this artificial ecosystem provides multiple uses, by preserving and enhancing biodiversity. This is particularly relevant considering that biodiversity can act as a driver of sustainable development in urban areas where most of the world's population lives and comes into direct contact with nature.

  8. Can Artificial Ecosystems Enhance Local Biodiversity? The Case of a Constructed Wetland in a Mediterranean Urban Context

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    De Martis, Gabriele; Mulas, Bonaria; Malavasi, Veronica; Marignani, Michela

    2016-05-01

    Constructed wetlands (CW) are considered a successful tool to treat wastewater in many countries: their success is mainly assessed observing the rate of pollution reduction, but CW can also contribute to the conservation of ecosystem services. Among the many ecosystem services provided, the biodiversity of CW has received less attention. The EcoSistema Filtro (ESF) of the Molentargius-Saline Regional Natural Park is a constructed wetland situated in Sardinia (Italy), built to filter treated wastewater, increase habitat diversity, and enhance local biodiversity. A floristic survey has been carried out yearly 1 year after the construction of the artificial ecosystem in 2004, observing the modification of the vascular flora composition in time. The flora of the ESF accounted for 54 % of the whole Regional Park's flora; alien species amount to 12 %; taxa of conservation concern are 6 %. Comparing the data in the years, except for the biennium 2006/2007, we observed a continuous increase of species richness, together with an increase of endemics, species of conservation concern, and alien species too. Once the endemics appeared, they remained part of the flora, showing a good persistence in the artificial wetland. Included in a natural park, but trapped in a sprawling and fast growing urban context, this artificial ecosystem provides multiple uses, by preserving and enhancing biodiversity. This is particularly relevant considering that biodiversity can act as a driver of sustainable development in urban areas where most of the world's population lives and comes into direct contact with nature.

  9. 7 CFR 245.10 - Action by local educational agencies.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ..., DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE CHILD NUTRITION PROGRAMS DETERMINING ELIGIBILITY FOR FREE AND REDUCED PRICE MEALS AND FREE MILK IN SCHOOLS § 245.10 Action by local educational agencies. (a) Each local educational..., or to provide free milk under the Special Milk Program, or to become a commodity-only school...

  10. 7 CFR 245.10 - Action by local educational agencies.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ..., DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE CHILD NUTRITION PROGRAMS DETERMINING ELIGIBILITY FOR FREE AND REDUCED PRICE MEALS AND FREE MILK IN SCHOOLS § 245.10 Action by local educational agencies. (a) Each local educational..., or to provide free milk under the Special Milk Program, or to become a commodity-only school...

  11. 7 CFR 245.10 - Action by local educational agencies.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ..., DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE CHILD NUTRITION PROGRAMS DETERMINING ELIGIBILITY FOR FREE AND REDUCED PRICE MEALS AND FREE MILK IN SCHOOLS § 245.10 Action by local educational agencies. (a) Each local educational..., or to provide free milk under the Special Milk Program, or to become a commodity-only school...

  12. 7 CFR 245.10 - Action by local educational agencies.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ..., DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE CHILD NUTRITION PROGRAMS DETERMINING ELIGIBILITY FOR FREE AND REDUCED PRICE MEALS AND FREE MILK IN SCHOOLS § 245.10 Action by local educational agencies. (a) Each local educational..., or to provide free milk under the Special Milk Program, or to become a commodity-only school...

  13. 7 CFR 245.10 - Action by local educational agencies.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ..., DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE CHILD NUTRITION PROGRAMS DETERMINING ELIGIBILITY FOR FREE AND REDUCED PRICE MEALS AND FREE MILK IN SCHOOLS § 245.10 Action by local educational agencies. (a) Each local educational..., or to provide free milk under the Special Milk Program, or to become a commodity-only school...

  14. Local biodiversity is higher inside than outside terrestrial protected areas worldwide

    PubMed Central

    Gray, Claudia L.; Hill, Samantha L. L.; Newbold, Tim; Hudson, Lawrence N.; Börger, Luca; Contu, Sara; Hoskins, Andrew J.; Ferrier, Simon; Purvis, Andy; Scharlemann, Jörn P. W.

    2016-01-01

    Protected areas are widely considered essential for biodiversity conservation. However, few global studies have demonstrated that protection benefits a broad range of species. Here, using a new global biodiversity database with unprecedented geographic and taxonomic coverage, we compare four biodiversity measures at sites sampled in multiple land uses inside and outside protected areas. Globally, species richness is 10.6% higher and abundance 14.5% higher in samples taken inside protected areas compared with samples taken outside, but neither rarefaction-based richness nor endemicity differ significantly. Importantly, we show that the positive effects of protection are mostly attributable to differences in land use between protected and unprotected sites. Nonetheless, even within some human-dominated land uses, species richness and abundance are higher in protected sites. Our results reinforce the global importance of protected areas but suggest that protection does not consistently benefit species with small ranges or increase the variety of ecological niches. PMID:27465407

  15. "Go local" island food network: using email networking to promote island foods for their health, biodiversity, and other "CHEEF" benefits.

    PubMed

    Englberger, L; Lorens, A; Pretrick, M E; Spegal, R; Falcam, I

    2010-04-01

    Dietary- and lifestyle-related diseases are problems of epidemic proportion in the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM). Public health resources to help prevent nutrition-related problems are limited. There is also concern about biodiversity, neglect of traditional staple foods, and threatened loss of traditional knowledge. A "Go Local" campaign was initiated to increase production and consumption of locally grown foods, for their Culture, Health, Environment, Economics, and Food security ("CHEEF") benefits. To provide updates and discuss local island food topics, the Island Food Community of Pohnpei launched an interagency email network in 2003. Interested members' email addresses were recorded in distribution lists, weekly/bi-weekly emails were sent and from these messages, a database was organized to record email topic details. An analysis of all emails up to July 2009 showed that membership had expanded to over 600 listed people from all FSM states, other Pacific Island countries and beyond. Information was shared on topics ranging from scientific findings of carotenoid content in local island food cultivars, to discussions on how daily habits related to island food use can be improved. Over 200 men and women, aged 22 to 80 years, contributed items, some indicating that they had shared emails to a further network at their workplace or community. In conclusion, this email network is a simple, cost-effective method to share information, create awareness, and mobilize island food promotion efforts with potential for providing health, biodiversity and other benefits of island foods to populations in the FSM and other countries.

  16. Formation of the residual stress field under local thermal actions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Burenin, A. A.; Dats, E. P.; Murashkin, E. V.

    2014-03-01

    The one-dimensional process of material deformation due to local heating and subsequent cooling is analyzed in the framework of the classical theory of elastoplastic deformations. The problem of formation of residual stresses in a thin plate made of an elastoplastic material under a given thermal action is solved. The graphs of fields of residual stresses and displacements are constructed.

  17. Faithful actions of locally compact quantum groups on classical spaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goswami, Debashish; Roy, Sutanu

    2017-03-01

    We construct examples of locally compact quantum groups coming from bicrossed product construction, including non-Kac ones, which can faithfully and ergodically act on connected classical (noncompact) smooth manifolds. However, none of these actions can be isometric in the sense of Goswami (Commun Math Phys 285(1):141-160, 2009), leading to the conjecture that the result obtained by Goswami and Joardar (Rigidity of action of compact quantum groups on compact, connected manifolds, 2013. arXiv:1309.1294) about nonexistence of genuine quantum isometry of classical compact connected Riemannian manifolds may hold in the noncompact case as well.

  18. A Meta-Analysis of Local Climate Change Adaptation Actions ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Local governments are beginning to take steps to address the consequences of climate change, such as sea level rise and heat events. However, we do not have a clear understanding of what local governments are doing -- the extent to which they expect climate change to affect their community, the types of actions they have in place to address climate change, and the resources at their disposal for implementation. Several studies have been conducted by academics, non-governmental organizations, and public agencies to assess the status of local climate change adaptation. This project collates the findings from dozens of such studies to conduct a meta-analysis of local climate change adaptation actions. The studies will be characterized along several dimensions, including (a) methods used, (b) timing and geographic scope, (c) topics covered, (d) types of adaptation actions identified, (e) implementation status, and (f) public engagement and environmental justice dimensions considered. The poster presents the project's rationale and approach and some illustrative findings from early analyses. [Note: The document being reviewed is an abstract in which a poster is being proposed. The poster will enter clearance if the abstract is accepted] The purpose of this poster is to present the research framework and approaches I am developing for my ORISE postdoctoral project, and to get feedback on early analyses.

  19. Does conservation on farmland contribute to halting the biodiversity decline?

    PubMed

    Kleijn, David; Rundlöf, Maj; Scheper, Jeroen; Smith, Henrik G; Tscharntke, Teja

    2011-09-01

    Biodiversity continues to decline, despite the implementation of international conservation conventions and measures. To counteract biodiversity loss, it is pivotal to know how conservation actions affect biodiversity trends. Focussing on European farmland species, we review what is known about the impact of conservation initiatives on biodiversity. We argue that the effects of conservation are a function of conservation-induced ecological contrast, agricultural land-use intensity and landscape context. We find that, to date, only a few studies have linked local conservation effects to national biodiversity trends. It is therefore unknown how the extensive European agri-environmental budget for conservation on farmland contributes to the policy objectives to halt biodiversity decline. Based on this review, we identify new research directions addressing this important knowledge gap.

  20. Avoiding coral reef functional collapse requires local and global action.

    PubMed

    Kennedy, Emma V; Perry, Chris T; Halloran, Paul R; Iglesias-Prieto, Roberto; Schönberg, Christine H L; Wisshak, Max; Form, Armin U; Carricart-Ganivet, Juan P; Fine, Maoz; Eakin, C Mark; Mumby, Peter J

    2013-05-20

    Coral reefs face multiple anthropogenic threats, from pollution and overfishing to the dual effects of greenhouse gas emissions: rising sea temperature and ocean acidification. While the abundance of coral has declined in recent decades, the implications for humanity are difficult to quantify because they depend on ecosystem function rather than the corals themselves. Most reef functions and ecosystem services are founded on the ability of reefs to maintain their three-dimensional structure through net carbonate accumulation. Coral growth only constitutes part of a reef's carbonate budget; bioerosion processes are influential in determining the balance between net structural growth and disintegration. Here, we combine ecological models with carbonate budgets and drive the dynamics of Caribbean reefs with the latest generation of climate models. Budget reconstructions using documented ecological perturbations drive shallow (6-10 m) Caribbean forereefs toward an increasingly fragile carbonate balance. We then projected carbonate budgets toward 2080 and contrasted the benefits of local conservation and global action on climate change. Local management of fisheries (specifically, no-take marine reserves) and the watershed can delay reef loss by at least a decade under "business-as-usual" rises in greenhouse gas emissions. However, local action must be combined with a low-carbon economy to prevent degradation of reef structures and associated ecosystem services.

  1. Inflationary magnetogenesis and non-local actions: the conformal anomaly

    SciTech Connect

    El-Menoufi, Basem Kamal

    2016-02-01

    We discuss the possibility of successful magnetogenesis during inflation by employing the one-loop effective action of massless QED. The action is strictly non-local and results from the long distance fluctuations of massless charged particles present at the inflationary scale. Most importantly, it encodes the conformal anomaly of QED which is crucial to avoid the vacuum preservation in classical electromagnetism. In particular, we find a blue spectrum for the magnetic field with spectral index n{sub B} ≅ 2 − α{sub e} where α{sub e} depends on both the number of e-folds during inflation as well as the coefficient of the one-loop beta function. In particular, the sign of the beta function has important bearing on the final result. A low reheating temperature is required for the present day magnetic field to be consistent with the lower bound inferred on the field in the intergalactic medium.

  2. Climate-smart management of biodiversity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nadeau, Christopher P.; Fuller, Angela K.; Rosenblatt, Daniel L.

    2015-01-01

    Determining where biodiversity is likely to be most vulnerable to climate change and methods to reduce that vulnerability are necessary first steps to incorporate climate change into biodiversity management plans. Here, we use a spatial climate change vulnerability assessment to (1) map the potential vulnerability of terrestrial biodiversity to climate change in the northeastern United States and (2) provide guidance on how and where management actions for biodiversity could provide long-term benefits under climate change (i.e., climate-smart management considerations). Our model suggests that biodiversity will be most vulnerable in Delaware, Maryland, and the District of Columbia due to the combination of high climate change velocity, high landscape resistance, and high topoclimate homogeneity. Biodiversity is predicted to be least vulnerable in Vermont, Maine, and New Hampshire because large portions of these states have low landscape resistance, low climate change velocity, and low topoclimate homogeneity. Our spatial climate-smart management considerations suggest that: (1) high topoclimate diversity could moderate the effects of climate change across 50% of the region; (2) decreasing local landscape resistance in conjunction with other management actions could increase the benefit of those actions across 17% of the region; and (3) management actions across 24% of the region could provide long-term benefits by promoting short-term population persistence that provides a source population capable of moving in the future. The guidance and framework we provide here should allow conservation organizations to incorporate our climate-smart management considerations into management plans without drastically changing their approach to biodiversity conservation.

  3. Assessing Local and Surrounding Threats to the Protected Area Network in a Biodiversity Hotspot: The Hengduan Mountains of Southwest China

    PubMed Central

    Ye, Xin; Liu, Guohua; Li, Zongshan; Wang, Hao; Zeng, Yuan

    2015-01-01

    Protected areas (PAs) not only serve as refuges of biodiversity conservation but are also part of large ecosystems and are vulnerable to change caused by human activity from surrounding lands, especially in biodiversity hotspots. Assessing threats to PAs and surrounding areas is therefore a critical step in effective conservation planning. We apply a threat framework as a means of quantitatively assessing local and surrounding threats to different types of PAs with gradient buffers, and to main ecoregions in the Hengduan Mountain Hotspot of southwest China. Our findings show that national protected areas (NPAs) have lower and significantly lower threat values (p<0.05) than provincial protected areas (PPAs) and other protected areas (OPAs), respectively, which indicates that NPAs are lands with a lower threat level and higher levels of protection and management. PAs have clear edge effects, as the proportion of areas with low threat levels decline dramatically in the 5-kilometer buffers just outside the PAs. However, NPAs suffered greater declines (58.3%) than PPAs (34.8%) and OPAs (33.4%) in the 5-kilometer buffers. Moreover, a significant positive correlation was found between the size of PAs and the proportion of areas with low threat levels that they contained in both PAs and PA buffers (p<0.01). To control or mitigate current threats at the regional scale, PA managers often require quantitative information related to threat intensities and spatial distribution. The threat assessment in the Hengduan Mountain Hotspot will be useful to policy makers and managers in their efforts to establish effective plans and target-oriented management strategies. PMID:26382763

  4. Assessing Local and Surrounding Threats to the Protected Area Network in a Biodiversity Hotspot: The Hengduan Mountains of Southwest China.

    PubMed

    Ye, Xin; Liu, Guohua; Li, Zongshan; Wang, Hao; Zeng, Yuan

    2015-01-01

    Protected areas (PAs) not only serve as refuges of biodiversity conservation but are also part of large ecosystems and are vulnerable to change caused by human activity from surrounding lands, especially in biodiversity hotspots. Assessing threats to PAs and surrounding areas is therefore a critical step in effective conservation planning. We apply a threat framework as a means of quantitatively assessing local and surrounding threats to different types of PAs with gradient buffers, and to main ecoregions in the Hengduan Mountain Hotspot of southwest China. Our findings show that national protected areas (NPAs) have lower and significantly lower threat values (p<0.05) than provincial protected areas (PPAs) and other protected areas (OPAs), respectively, which indicates that NPAs are lands with a lower threat level and higher levels of protection and management. PAs have clear edge effects, as the proportion of areas with low threat levels decline dramatically in the 5-kilometer buffers just outside the PAs. However, NPAs suffered greater declines (58.3%) than PPAs (34.8%) and OPAs (33.4%) in the 5-kilometer buffers. Moreover, a significant positive correlation was found between the size of PAs and the proportion of areas with low threat levels that they contained in both PAs and PA buffers (p<0.01). To control or mitigate current threats at the regional scale, PA managers often require quantitative information related to threat intensities and spatial distribution. The threat assessment in the Hengduan Mountain Hotspot will be useful to policy makers and managers in their efforts to establish effective plans and target-oriented management strategies.

  5. Endomorphins: localization, release and action on rat dorsal horn neurons.

    PubMed

    Dun, N J; Dun, S L; Wu, S Y; Williams, C A; Kwok, E H

    2000-01-01

    Endomorphin (Endo) 1 and 2, two tetrapeptides isolated from the bovine and human brain, have been proposed to be the endogenous ligand for the mu-opiate receptor. A multi-disciplinary study was undertaken to address the issues of localization, release and biological action of Endo with respect to the rat dorsal horn. First, immunohistochemical studies showed that Endo-1- or Endo-2-like immunoreactivity (Endo-1- or Endo-2-LI) is selectively expressed in fiber-like elements occupying the superficial layers of the rat dorsal horn, which also exhibit a high level of mu-opiate receptor immunoreactivity. Second, release of immunoreactive Endo-2-like substances (irEndo) from the in vitro rat spinal cords upon electrical stimulation of dorsal root afferent fibers was detected by the immobilized antibody microprobe technique. The site of release corresponded to laminae I and II where the highest density of Endo-2-LI fibers was localized. Lastly, whole-cell patch clamp recordings from substantia gelatinosa (SG) neurons of rat lumbar spinal cord slices revealed two distinct actions of exogenous Endo-1 and Endo-2: (1) depression of excitatory and/or inhibitory postsynaptic potentials evoked by stimulation of dorsal root entry zone, and (2) hyperpolarization of SG neurons. These two effects were prevented by the selective mu-opiate receptor antagonist beta-funaltrexamine. The localization of endomorphin-positive fibers in superficial layers of the dorsal horn and the release of irEndo upon stimulation of dorsal root afferents together with the observation that Endo inhibits the activity of SG neurons by interacting with mu-opiate receptors provide additional support of a role of Endo as the endogenous ligand for the mu-opiate receptor in the rat dorsal horn.

  6. Uncertainty in identifying local extinctions: the distribution of missing data and its effects on biodiversity measures.

    PubMed

    Boakes, Elizabeth H; Fuller, Richard A; McGowan, Philip J K; Mace, Georgina M

    2016-03-01

    Identifying local extinctions is integral to estimating species richness and geographic range changes and informing extinction risk assessments. However, the species occurrence records underpinning these estimates are frequently compromised by a lack of recorded species absences making it impossible to distinguish between local extinction and lack of survey effort-for a rigorously compiled database of European and Asian Galliformes, approximately 40% of half-degree cells contain records from before but not after 1980. We investigate the distribution of these cells, finding differences between the Palaearctic (forests, low mean human influence index (HII), outside protected areas (PAs)) and Indo-Malaya (grassland, high mean HII, outside PAs). Such cells also occur more in less peaceful countries. We show that different interpretations of these cells can lead to large over/under-estimations of species richness and extent of occurrences, potentially misleading prioritization and extinction risk assessment schemes. To avoid mistakes, local extinctions inferred from sightings records need to account for the history of survey effort in a locality.

  7. Conservation of Socioculturally Important Local Crop Biodiversity in the Oromia Region of Ethiopia: A Case Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Balemie, Kebu; Singh, Ranjay K.

    2012-09-01

    In this study, we surveyed diversity in a range of local crops in the Lume and Gimbichu districts of Ethiopia, together with the knowledge of local people regarding crop uses, socio-economic importance, conservation, management and existing threats. Data were collected using semistructured interviews and participant observation. The study identified 28 farmers' varieties of 12 crop species. Among these, wheat ( Triticum turgidum) and tef ( Eragrostis tef) have high intra-specific diversity, with 9 and 6 varieties respectively. Self-seed supply or seed saving was the main (80 %) source of seeds for replanting. Agronomic performance (yield and pest resistance), market demand, nutritional and use diversity attributes of the crop varieties were highlighted as important criteria for making decisions regarding planting and maintenance. Over 74 % of the informants grow a combination of "improved" and farmers' varieties. Of the farmers' varieties, the most obvious decline and/or loss was reported for wheat varieties. Introduction of improved wheat varieties, pest infestation, shortage of land, low yield performance and climate variability were identified as the principal factors contributing to this loss or decline. Appropriate interventions for future conservation and sustainable use of farmers' varieties were suggested.

  8. Using local biodiversity to prevent pollution transfers to environmental components of a Mediterranean semi-arid ecosystem

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heckenroth, Alma; Rabier, Jacques; Laffont-Schwob, Isabelle

    2014-05-01

    In arid and semi-arid Mediterranean coastal areas, metals and metalloids (MM) pollution coming from unreclaimed brownfields has increased the negative environmental stresses leading to ecosystems degradations as soil erosion and losses of organic matter and biodiversity. On these sites, maintaining or restoring a local vegetation cover is considered as a key step to stop the degradation cycle. Furthermore, in a context of high pollution occurring in natural areas, phytoremediation is considered as an attractive alternative to conventional soil remediation techniques, the first reducing pollution transfers, improving the soil quality. In protected or natural areas, it is also important to perceive then design phytoremediation as a way to assist ecosystems recovery, using the restoration ecology concepts. However, only few works in the literature deal with the potential use of native Mediterranean plant species for phytoremediation. On the South-East coast of Marseille (France), the activity of the former smelting factory of l'Escalette, ceased since 1925. However, its brownfield is still a source of pollution by trace metals and metalloids for abiotic and biotic components of the surrounding massif. This massif hosts a rich biodiversity with rare and protected plant species despite the metallic pollution and this area has been included in the recently created first peri-urban French National Park of Calanques. In this context, an integrated research project is being conducted with local actors and stakeholders, from the selection of native plant species, assessment and optimization of phytostabilization capacities of selected species, to the development of ecological engineering techniques well adapted to local constraints and phytostabilization field trials. The first part of this study has been conducted on two areas, corresponding to different pollution pattern, plant communities and environmental drivers: a halophytic area, characterized by typical coastal

  9. Coral reef resilience through biodiversity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rogers, Caroline S.

    2013-01-01

    Irrefutable evidence of coral reef degradation worldwide and increasing pressure from rising seawater temperatures and ocean acidification associated with climate change have led to a focus on reef resilience and a call to “manage” coral reefs for resilience. Ideally, global action to reduce emission of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases will be accompanied by local action. Effective management requires reduction of local stressors, identification of the characteristics of resilient reefs, and design of marine protected area networks that include potentially resilient reefs. Future research is needed on how stressors interact, on how climate change will affect corals, fish, and other reef organisms as well as overall biodiversity, and on basic ecological processes such as connectivity. Not all reef species and reefs will respond similarly to local and global stressors. Because reef-building corals and other organisms have some potential to adapt to environmental changes, coral reefs will likely persist in spite of the unprecedented combination of stressors currently affecting them. The biodiversity of coral reefs is the basis for their remarkable beauty and for the benefits they provide to society. The extraordinary complexity of these ecosystems makes it both more difficult to predict their future and more likely they will have a future.

  10. Biodiversity--from Sea to Shining Sea.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    St. Antoine, Sara; Runk, Julie Velasquez

    1996-01-01

    Describes teaching strategies that allow teachers to use the topic of biodiversity to talk about a range of social and scientific issues. Discusses biodiversity basics, local links to global biodiversity, mapping our ecoregions, and activity ideas. Presents activities that introduce students to different reasons for protecting biodiversity and…

  11. Increasing conservation management action by involving local people in natural resource monitoring.

    PubMed

    Danielsen, Finn; Mendoza, Marlynn M; Tagtag, Anson; Alviola, Phillip A; Balete, Danilo S; Jensen, Arne E; Enghoff, Martin; Poulsen, Michael K

    2007-11-01

    There is a need for a better understanding of the status of the environment. At the same time, concerns have been raised regarding alienation of the local populace from environmental decisions. One proposed solution is participatory environmental monitoring. When evaluating the usefulness of environmental monitoring, the focus may be on accuracy, as is usually done by scientists, or on efficiency in terms of conservation impact. To test whether investment in participatory biodiversity monitoring makes economic sense for obtaining data for management decisions, we compared the cost efficiency of participatory and conventional biodiversity monitoring methods in Philippine parks. We found that, from a government perspective, investment in monitoring that combines scientific with participatory methods is strikingly more effective than a similar level of investment in conventional scientific methods alone in generating conservation management interventions. Moreover, the local populace seemed to benefit from more secure de facto user rights over land and other resources. Participatory biodiversity monitoring not only represents a cost-effective alternative when conventional monitoring is impossible, but it is also an unexpectedly powerful complementary approach, capable of generating a much higher level of conservation management intervention, where conventional monitoring already takes place.

  12. Biodiversity Prospecting.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sittenfeld, Ana; Lovejoy, Annie

    1994-01-01

    Examines the use of biodiversity prospecting as a method for tropical countries to value biodiversity and contribute to conservation upkeep costs. Discusses the first agreement between a public interest organization and pharmaceutical company for the extraction of plant and animal materials in Costa Rica. (LZ)

  13. Agricultural Biodiversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Postance, Jim

    1998-01-01

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

  14. A Meta-Analysis of Local Climate Change Adaptation Actions

    EPA Science Inventory

    Local governments are beginning to take steps to address the consequences of climate change, such as sea level rise and heat events. However, we do not have a clear understanding of what local governments are doing -- the extent to which they expect climate change to affect their...

  15. Local Action for Global Change. World Education Reports, Number 29.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Garb, Gillian, Ed.; Baltz, Davis, Ed.

    1991-01-01

    This issue contains five articles that address environmental concerns. "Poverty and Environmental Decline" (Alan Durning) analyzes accelerating environmental decline and discusses the need for action at every level to reverse global deterioration. "Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Made Easy" (Cesar Galvan, Peter Kenmore)…

  16. Transfer Latent SVM for Joint Recognition and Localization of Actions in Videos.

    PubMed

    Liu, Cuiwei; Wu, Xinxiao; Jia, Yunde

    2016-11-01

    In this paper, we develop a novel transfer latent support vector machine for joint recognition and localization of actions by using Web images and weakly annotated training videos. The model takes training videos which are only annotated with action labels as input for alleviating the laborious and time-consuming manual annotations of action locations. Since the ground-truth of action locations in videos are not available, the locations are modeled as latent variables in our method and are inferred during both training and testing phrases. For the purpose of improving the localization accuracy with some prior information of action locations, we collect a number of Web images which are annotated with both action labels and action locations to learn a discriminative model by enforcing the local similarities between videos and Web images. A structural transformation based on randomized clustering forest is used to map the Web images to videos for handling the heterogeneous features of Web images and videos. Experiments on two public action datasets demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed model for both action localization and action recognition.

  17. Model-based source localization of extracellular action potentials.

    PubMed

    Somogyvári, Zoltán; Zalányi, László; Ulbert, István; Erdi, Péter

    2005-09-30

    A new model-based analysis method was set up for revealing information encrypted in extracellular spatial potential patterns of neocortical action potentials. Spikes were measured by extracellular linear multiple microelectrode in vivo cat's primary auditory cortex and were analyzed based on current source density (CSD) distribution models. Validity of the monopole and other point source approximations were tested on the measured potential patterns by numerical fitting. We have found, that point source models could not provide accurate description of the measured patterns. We introduced a new model of the CSD distribution on a spiking cell, called counter-current model (CCM). This new model was shown to provide better description of the spatial current distribution of the cell during the initial negative deflection of the extracellular action potential, from the onset of the spike to the negative peak. The new model was tested on simulated extracellular potentials. We proved numerically, that all the parameters of the model could be determined accurately based on measurements. Thus, fitting of the CCM allowed extraction of these parameters from the measurements. Due to model fitting, CSD could be calculated with much higher accuracy as done with the traditional method because distance dependence of the spatial potential patterns was explicitly taken into consideration in our method. Average CSD distribution of the neocortical action potentials was calculated and spatial decay constant of the dendritic trees was determined by applying our new method.

  18. 36 CFR 1010.17 - Actions to eliminate duplication with State and local procedures.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... duplication with State and local procedures. 1010.17 Section 1010.17 Parks, Forests, and Public Property PRESIDIO TRUST ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY § 1010.17 Actions to eliminate duplication with State and local... fullest extent possible to reduce duplication between NEPA and State and local requirements....

  19. Mapping Biodiversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    World Wildlife Fund, Washington, DC.

    This document features a lesson plan that examines how maps help scientists protect biodiversity and how plants and animals are adapted to specific ecoregions by comparing biome, ecoregion, and habitat. Samples of instruction and assessment are included. (KHR)

  20. Backyard Biodiversity.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thompson, Sarah S.

    2002-01-01

    Describes a field trip experience for the Earth Odyssey project for elementary school students focusing on biodiversity. Introduces the concept of diversity, field work, species richness, and the connection between animals and their habitat. (YDS)

  1. Sketches of Local Action Programs for School Environmental Education 12/73 to 6/74.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Project KARE, Blue Bell, PA.

    Twenty-two elementary and secondary schools from throughout the five-county Southeastern Pennsylvania region were selected by Project KARE (Knowledgeable Action to Restore our Environment) to receive grants for Local Action Programs (LAP) of environmental education during 1973-1974. This guide reviews these twenty-two programs including the…

  2. Is local participation always optimal for sustainable action? The costs of consensus-building in Local Agenda 21.

    PubMed

    Brandt, Urs Steiner; Svendsen, Gert Tinggaard

    2013-11-15

    Is local participation always optimal for sustainable action? Here, Local Agenda 21 is a relevant case as it broadly calls for consensus-building among stakeholders. Consensus-building is, however, costly. We show that the costs of making local decisions are likely to rapidly exceed the benefits. Why? Because as the number of participants grows, the more likely it is that the group will include individuals who have an extreme position and are unwilling to make compromises. Thus, the net gain of self-organization should be compared with those of its alternatives, for example voting, market-solutions, or not making any choices at all. Even though the informational value of meetings may be helpful to policy makers, the model shows that it also decreases as the number of participants increase. Overall, the result is a thought provoking scenario for Local Agenda 21 as it highlights the risk of less sustainable action in the future.

  3. Evolution in biodiversity policy – current gaps and future needs

    PubMed Central

    Santamaría, Luis; Méndez, Pablo F

    2012-01-01

    The intensity and speed of human alterations to the planet's ecosystems are yielding our static, ahistorical view of biodiversity obsolete. Human actions frequently trigger fast evolutionary responses, affect extant genetic variation and result in the establishment of new communities and co-evolutionary networks for which we lack past analogues. Contemporary evolution interplays with ecological changes to determine the response of organisms and ecosystems to anthropogenic pressures. Examples on wild species include responses to harvest (e.g. fisheries, hunting, angling), habitat loss and fragmentation (e.g. genetic effects of isolation), biotic exchange (e.g. evolutionary responses to control measures), climate change (e.g. local adaptation and its interplay with dispersal processes) and the responses of endangered species to conservation measures. A review of international and EU biodiversity policies showed numerous opportunities for the integration of evolutionary knowledge, with the realistic prospect of improving their efficacy. Such opportunities should be extended to other sectoral policies of direct relevance for biodiversity – notably nature conservation, fisheries, agriculture, water resources, spatial planning and climate change. These avenues for improvement are, however, challenged by the low level of enforcement of biodiversity policies, linked to the nonbinding nature of most biodiversity-policy documents, and the decreasing representation of biodiversity in EU's research policy. PMID:25568042

  4. A Low Carbon Development Guide for Local Government Actions in China

    SciTech Connect

    Zheng, Nina; Zhou, Nan; Price, Lynn; Ohshita, Stephanie

    2011-05-01

    Local level actions are crucial for achieving energy-saving and greenhouse gas emission reduction targets. Yet it is challenging to implement new policies and actions due to a lack of information, funding, and capacity. This is particularly the case in developing countries such as China. Even though national energy intensity and carbon intensity targets have been set, most local governments do not have the knowledge regarding actions to achieve the targets, the cost-effectiveness of policies, the possible impact of policies, or how to design and implement a climate action plan. This paper describes a guidebook that was developed to motivate and provide local governments in China with information to create an action plan to tackle climate change and increase energy efficiency. It provides a simple step-by-step description of how action plans can be established and essential elements to be included - from preparing a GHG emission inventory to implementation of the plan. The guidebook also provides a comprehensive list of successful policies and best practices found internationally and in China to encourage low carbon development in industry, buildings, transportation, electric power generation, agriculture and forestry. This paper also presents indicators that can be used to define low-carbon development, as well as to evaluate the effectiveness of actions taken at an aggregated (city) level, and at a sectoral or end use level. The guidebook can also be used for low carbon development by local governments in other developing countries.

  5. Local modulation of steroid action: rapid control of enzymatic activity

    PubMed Central

    Charlier, Thierry D.; Cornil, Charlotte A.; Patte-Mensah, Christine; Meyer, Laurence; Mensah-Nyagan, A. Guy; Balthazart, Jacques

    2015-01-01

    Estrogens can induce rapid, short-lived physiological and behavioral responses, in addition to their slow, but long-term, effects at the transcriptional level. To be functionally relevant, these effects should be associated with rapid modulations of estrogens concentrations. 17β-estradiol is synthesized by the enzyme aromatase, using testosterone as a substrate, but can also be degraded into catechol-estrogens via hydroxylation by the same enzyme, leading to an increase or decrease in estrogens concentration, respectively. The first evidence that aromatase activity (AA) can be rapidly modulated came from experiments performed in Japanese quail hypothalamus homogenates. This rapid modulation is triggered by calcium-dependent phosphorylations and was confirmed in other tissues and species. The mechanisms controlling the phosphorylation status, the targeted amino acid residues and the reversibility seem to vary depending of the tissues and is discussed in this review. We currently do not know whether the phosphorylation of the same amino acid affects both aromatase and/or hydroxylase activities or whether these residues are different. These processes provide a new general mechanism by which local estrogen concentration can be rapidly altered in the brain and other tissues. PMID:25852459

  6. Local Entropy, Metric Entropy and Topological Entropy for Countable Discrete Amenable Group Actions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ren, Xiankun; Sun, Wenxiang

    2016-06-01

    Let X be a compact metric space and G a countable infinite discrete amenable group acting on X. Like in the ℤ-action cases we define the notion of local entropy and by it we bound the difference between metric entropy and that of a partition, and bound the difference between topological entropy and that of a separated set, which generalize Theorems 1(1) and 1(2) in [Newhouse, 1989] from ℤ-actions to amenable group actions. We further prove that the entropy function hμ(G) is upper semi-continuous on ℳ(X,G) for an asymptotic entropy expansive amenable group action.

  7. Pacific issues of biodiversity, health and nutrition.

    PubMed

    Englberger, Lois; Lorens, Adelino; Guarino, Luigi; Taylor, Mary; Snowdon, Wendy; Maddison, Marie; Mieger, Judy; Thomson, Lex; Lippwe, Kipier; Rimon, Betarim; Fitzgerald, Maureen H; Tibon, Jorelik; Sohhrab, Sepehr; Ehmes, Okean; Rally, Jim; Shed, Patterson

    2007-09-01

    Neglect of traditional food systems has led to serious nutrition and health problems throughout the Pacific Islands. At the same time, there is concern about the loss of traditional knowledge, customs and culture related to local foods, and of biodiversity. However, there is still a great diversity of nutrient-rich local food crops in the Pacific, along with considerable knowledge about these foods, their methods of production, harvesting, storage, and preparation. An integrated approach is needed in order to make a meaningful impact on increased production, marketing/processing and use of local food crops and foods for better health and nutrition, requiring greater collaboration between the health sector and agencies in other sectors. Priorities for action include: documentation and assessment of traditional food systems, including analysis of local foods and crop varieties for their nutrient content; innovative means of increasing awareness of the values of local foods among the general public and policy makers; conservation of rare varieties of crops and food trees and protection of the environment; and an increased focus on small-scale processing and marketing of local foods. Overriding all of this is the urgent need to mainstream consideration of these important issues into relevant national and regional policies. The rubric "Biodiversity for Health and Nutrition" incorporates all of these issues and provides a framework within which all partner agencies can be involved.

  8. Biodiversity Performs!

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    World Wildlife Fund, Washington, DC.

    This document features a lesson plan in which students work in teams to act out different ecosystem services, describe several free services that biodiversity provides to human, and explain how these services make life on earth possible. Samples of instruction and assessment are included. (KHR)

  9. PROTECTING BIODIVERSITY

    EPA Science Inventory

    At present, over 40% of the earth's land surface has been converted from its natural state to one dominated by human activities such as agriculture and development. The destruction and degradation of natural habitats has been clearly linked to the loss of biodiversity. Biodiver...

  10. Biodiversity Management

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Biodiversity management is summarized for the global chickpea (Cicer arietinum) crop germplasm held in genebanks as ex situ collections. Morphological diversity is presented with the range of variation reported from the global collections. The largest collections are held at international agricult...

  11. Antarctica and the strategic plan for biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Chown, Steven L; Brooks, Cassandra M; Terauds, Aleks; Le Bohec, Céline; van Klaveren-Impagliazzo, Céline; Whittington, Jason D; Butchart, Stuart H M; Coetzee, Bernard W T; Collen, Ben; Convey, Peter; Gaston, Kevin J; Gilbert, Neil; Gill, Mike; Höft, Robert; Johnston, Sam; Kennicutt, Mahlon C; Kriesell, Hannah J; Le Maho, Yvon; Lynch, Heather J; Palomares, Maria; Puig-Marcó, Roser; Stoett, Peter; McGeoch, Melodie A

    2017-03-01

    The Strategic Plan for Biodiversity, adopted under the auspices of the Convention on Biological Diversity, provides the basis for taking effective action to curb biodiversity loss across the planet by 2020-an urgent imperative. Yet, Antarctica and the Southern Ocean, which encompass 10% of the planet's surface, are excluded from assessments of progress against the Strategic Plan. The situation is a lost opportunity for biodiversity conservation globally. We provide such an assessment. Our evidence suggests, surprisingly, that for a region so remote and apparently pristine as the Antarctic, the biodiversity outlook is similar to that for the rest of the planet. Promisingly, however, much scope for remedial action exists.

  12. Significant Local-Scale Plant-Insect Species Richness Relationship Independent of Abiotic Effects in the Temperate Cape Floristic Region Biodiversity Hotspot.

    PubMed

    Kemp, Jurene E; Ellis, Allan G

    2017-01-01

    Globally plant species richness is a significant predictor of insect richness. Whether this is the result of insect diversity responding directly to plant diversity, or both groups responding in similar ways to extrinsic factors, has been much debated. Here we assess this relationship in the Cape Floristic Region (CFR), a biodiversity hotspot. The CFR has higher plant diversity than expected from latitude (i.e., abiotic conditions), but very little is known about the diversity of insects residing in this region. We first quantify diversity relationships at multiple spatial scales for one of the dominant plant families in the CFR, the Restionaceae, and its associated insect herbivore community. Plant and insect diversity are significantly positively correlated at the local scales (10-50 m; 0.1-3 km), but not at the regional scales (15-20 km; 50-70 km). The local scale relationship remains significantly positively correlated even when accounting for the influence of extrinsic variables and other vegetation attributes. This suggests that the diversity of local insect assemblages may be more strongly influenced by plant species richness than by abiotic variables. Further, vegetation age and plant structural complexity also influenced insect richness. The ratio of insect species per plant species in the CFR is comparable to other temperate regions around the world, suggesting that the insect diversity of the CFR is high relative to other areas of the globe with similar abiotic conditions, primarily as a result of the unusually high plant diversity in the region.

  13. Significant Local-Scale Plant-Insect Species Richness Relationship Independent of Abiotic Effects in the Temperate Cape Floristic Region Biodiversity Hotspot

    PubMed Central

    Kemp, Jurene E.; Ellis, Allan G.

    2017-01-01

    Globally plant species richness is a significant predictor of insect richness. Whether this is the result of insect diversity responding directly to plant diversity, or both groups responding in similar ways to extrinsic factors, has been much debated. Here we assess this relationship in the Cape Floristic Region (CFR), a biodiversity hotspot. The CFR has higher plant diversity than expected from latitude (i.e., abiotic conditions), but very little is known about the diversity of insects residing in this region. We first quantify diversity relationships at multiple spatial scales for one of the dominant plant families in the CFR, the Restionaceae, and its associated insect herbivore community. Plant and insect diversity are significantly positively correlated at the local scales (10–50 m; 0.1–3 km), but not at the regional scales (15–20 km; 50–70 km). The local scale relationship remains significantly positively correlated even when accounting for the influence of extrinsic variables and other vegetation attributes. This suggests that the diversity of local insect assemblages may be more strongly influenced by plant species richness than by abiotic variables. Further, vegetation age and plant structural complexity also influenced insect richness. The ratio of insect species per plant species in the CFR is comparable to other temperate regions around the world, suggesting that the insect diversity of the CFR is high relative to other areas of the globe with similar abiotic conditions, primarily as a result of the unusually high plant diversity in the region. PMID:28076412

  14. Warfare in biodiversity hotspots.

    PubMed

    Hanson, Thor; Brooks, Thomas M; Da Fonseca, Gustavo A B; Hoffmann, Michael; Lamoreux, John F; Machlis, Gary; Mittermeier, Cristina G; Mittermeier, Russell A; Pilgrim, John D

    2009-06-01

    Conservation efforts are only as sustainable as the social and political context within which they take place. The weakening or collapse of sociopolitical frameworks during wartime can lead to habitat destruction and the erosion of conservation policies, but in some cases, may also confer ecological benefits through altered settlement patterns and reduced resource exploitation. Over 90% of the major armed conflicts between 1950 and 2000 occurred within countries containing biodiversity hotspots, and more than 80% took place directly within hotspot areas. Less than one-third of the 34 recognized hotspots escaped significant conflict during this period, and most suffered repeated episodes of violence. This pattern was remarkably consistent over these 5 decades. Evidence from the war-torn Eastern Afromontane hotspot suggests that biodiversity conservation is improved when international nongovernmental organizations support local protected area staff and remain engaged throughout the conflict. With biodiversity hotspots concentrated in politically volatile regions, the conservation community must maintain continuous involvement during periods of war, and biodiversity conservation should be incorporated into military, reconstruction, and humanitarian programs in the world's conflict zones.

  15. Limitations of outsourcing on-the-ground biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Iacona, Gwenllian D; Bode, Michael; Armsworth, Paul R

    2016-12-01

    To counteract global species decline, modern biodiversity conservation engages in large projects, spends billions of dollars, and includes many organizations working simultaneously within regions. To add to this complexity, the conservation sector has hierarchical structure, where conservation actions are often outsourced by funders (foundations, government, etc.) to local organizations that work on-the-ground. In contrast, conservation science usually assumes that a single organization makes resource allocation decisions. This discrepancy calls for theory to understand how the expected biodiversity outcomes change when interactions between organizations are accounted for. Here, we used a game theoretic model to explore how biodiversity outcomes are affected by vertical and horizontal interactions between 3 conservation organizations: a funder that outsourced its actions and 2 local conservation organizations that work on-the-ground. Interactions between the organizations changed the spending decisions made by individual organizations, and thereby the magnitude and direction of the conservation benefits. We showed that funders would struggle to incentivize recipient organizations with set priorities to perform desired actions, even when they control substantial amounts of the funding and employ common contracting approaches to enhance outcomes. Instead, biodiversity outcomes depended on priority alignment across the organizations. Conservation outcomes for the funder were improved by strategic interactions when organizational priorities were well aligned, but decreased when priorities were misaligned. Meanwhile, local organizations had improved outcomes regardless of alignment due to additional funding in the system. Given that conservation often involves the aggregate actions of multiple organizations with different objectives, strategic interactions between organizations need to be considered if we are to predict possible outcomes of conservation programs or

  16. 7 CFR 247.35 - Local agency appeals of State agency actions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 4 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Local agency appeals of State agency actions. 247.35 Section 247.35 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) FOOD AND NUTRITION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE CHILD NUTRITION PROGRAMS COMMODITY SUPPLEMENTAL FOOD PROGRAM §...

  17. 7 CFR 247.35 - Local agency appeals of State agency actions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 4 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Local agency appeals of State agency actions. 247.35 Section 247.35 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) FOOD AND NUTRITION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE CHILD NUTRITION PROGRAMS COMMODITY SUPPLEMENTAL FOOD PROGRAM §...

  18. 7 CFR 247.35 - Local agency appeals of State agency actions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 4 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Local agency appeals of State agency actions. 247.35 Section 247.35 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) FOOD AND NUTRITION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE CHILD NUTRITION PROGRAMS COMMODITY SUPPLEMENTAL FOOD PROGRAM §...

  19. 7 CFR 247.35 - Local agency appeals of State agency actions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 4 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Local agency appeals of State agency actions. 247.35 Section 247.35 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) FOOD AND NUTRITION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE CHILD NUTRITION PROGRAMS COMMODITY SUPPLEMENTAL FOOD PROGRAM §...

  20. Using Local Stories as a Call to Action on Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation in Minnesota

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phipps, M.

    2015-12-01

    Climate Generation: A Will Steger Legacy and the University of Minnesota's Regional Sustainability Development Partnerships (RSDP) have developed a novel approach to engaging rural Minnesotans on climate change issues. Through the use of personal, local stories about individuals' paths to action to mitigate and or adapt to climate change, Climate Generation and RSDP aim to spur others to action. Minnesota's Changing Climate project includes 12 Climate Convenings throughout rural Minnesota in a range of communities (tourism-based, agrarian, natural resources-based, university towns) to engage local populations in highly local conversations about climate change, its local impacts, and local solutions currently occurring. Climate Generation and RSDP have partnered with Molly Phipps Consulting to evaluate the efficacy of this approach in rural Minnesota. Data include pre and post convening surveys examining participants' current action around climate change, attitudes toward climate change (using questions from Maibach, Roser-Renouf, and Leiserowitz, 2009), and the strength of their social network to support their current and ongoing work toward mitigating and adapting to climate change. Although the Climate Convenings are tailored to each community, all include a resource fair of local organizations already engaging in climate change mitigation and adaptation activities which participants can participate in, a welcome from a trusted local official, a presentation on the science of climate change, sharing of local climate stories, and break-out groups where participants can learn how to get involved in a particular mitigation or adaptation strategy. Preliminary results have been positive: participants feel motivated to work toward mitigating and adapting to climate change, and more local stories have emerged that can be shared in follow-up webinars and on a project website to continue to inspire others to act.

  1. Predictive model for sustaining biodiversity in tropical countryside

    PubMed Central

    Mendenhall, Chase D.; Sekercioglu, Cagan H.; Brenes, Federico Oviedo; Ehrlich, Paul R.; Daily, Gretchen C.

    2011-01-01

    Growing demand for food, fuel, and fiber is driving the intensification and expansion of agricultural land through a corresponding displacement of native woodland, savanna, and shrubland. In the wake of this displacement, it is clear that farmland can support biodiversity through preservation of important ecosystem elements at a fine scale. However, how much biodiversity can be sustained and with what tradeoffs for production are open questions. Using a well-studied tropical ecosystem in Costa Rica, we develop an empirically based model for quantifying the “wildlife-friendliness” of farmland for native birds. Some 80% of the 166 mist-netted species depend on fine-scale countryside forest elements (≤60-m-wide clusters of trees, typically of variable length and width) that weave through farmland along hilltops, valleys, rivers, roads, and property borders. Our model predicts with ∼75% accuracy the bird community composition of any part of the landscape. We find conservation value in small (≤20 m wide) clusters of trees and somewhat larger (≤60 m wide) forest remnants to provide substantial support for biodiversity beyond the borders of tropical forest reserves. Within the study area, forest elements on farms nearly double the effective size of the local forest reserve, providing seminatural habitats for bird species typically associated with the forest. Our findings provide a basis for estimating and sustaining biodiversity in farming systems through managing fine-scale ecosystem elements and, more broadly, informing ecosystem service analyses, biodiversity action plans, and regional land use strategies. PMID:21911396

  2. Predictive model for sustaining biodiversity in tropical countryside.

    PubMed

    Mendenhall, Chase D; Sekercioglu, Cagan H; Brenes, Federico Oviedo; Ehrlich, Paul R; Daily, Gretchen C

    2011-09-27

    Growing demand for food, fuel, and fiber is driving the intensification and expansion of agricultural land through a corresponding displacement of native woodland, savanna, and shrubland. In the wake of this displacement, it is clear that farmland can support biodiversity through preservation of important ecosystem elements at a fine scale. However, how much biodiversity can be sustained and with what tradeoffs for production are open questions. Using a well-studied tropical ecosystem in Costa Rica, we develop an empirically based model for quantifying the "wildlife-friendliness" of farmland for native birds. Some 80% of the 166 mist-netted species depend on fine-scale countryside forest elements (≤ 60-m-wide clusters of trees, typically of variable length and width) that weave through farmland along hilltops, valleys, rivers, roads, and property borders. Our model predicts with ∼75% accuracy the bird community composition of any part of the landscape. We find conservation value in small (≤ 20 m wide) clusters of trees and somewhat larger (≤ 60 m wide) forest remnants to provide substantial support for biodiversity beyond the borders of tropical forest reserves. Within the study area, forest elements on farms nearly double the effective size of the local forest reserve, providing seminatural habitats for bird species typically associated with the forest. Our findings provide a basis for estimating and sustaining biodiversity in farming systems through managing fine-scale ecosystem elements and, more broadly, informing ecosystem service analyses, biodiversity action plans, and regional land use strategies.

  3. Uses of Local Plant Biodiversity among the Tribal Communities of Pangi Valley of District Chamba in Cold Desert Himalaya, India

    PubMed Central

    Rana, Pawan Kumar; Kumar, Puneet; Singhal, Vijay Kumar; Rana, Jai Chand

    2014-01-01

    Pangi Valley is the interior most tribal area in Himachal Pradesh of Northwest Himalaya. An ethnobotanical investigation is attempted to highlight the traditional knowledge of medicinal plants being used by the tribes of Pangi Valley. Various localities visited in the valley 2-3 times in a year and ethnobotanical information was collected through interviews with elderly people, women, shepherds, and local vaids during May 2009 to September 2013. This paper documented 67 plant species from 59 genera and 36 families along with their botanical name, local name, family name, habit, medicinal parts used, and traditional usage, including the use of 35 plants with new ethnomedicinal and other use from the study area for the first time. Wild plants represent an important part of their medicinal, dietary, handicraft, fuel wood, veterinary, and fodder components. These tribal inhabitants and migrants depend on the wild plant resources for food, medicines, fuel, fibre, timber, and household articles for their livelihood security. The present study documents and contributes significant ethnobotanical information from the remote high altitude and difficult region of the world, which remains cut off from rest of the world for 6-7 months due to heavy snowfall. PMID:24696658

  4. Spatiotemporal localization and categorization of human actions in unsegmented image sequences.

    PubMed

    Oikonomopoulos, Antonios; Patras, Ioannis; Pantic, Maja

    2011-04-01

    In this paper we address the problem of localization and recognition of human activities in unsegmented image sequences. The main contribution of the proposed method is the use of an implicit representation of the spatiotemporal shape of the activity which relies on the spatiotemporal localization of characteristic ensembles of feature descriptors. Evidence for the spatiotemporal localization of the activity is accumulated in a probabilistic spatiotemporal voting scheme. The local nature of the proposed voting framework allows us to deal with multiple activities taking place in the same scene, as well as with activities in the presence of clutter and occlusion. We use boosting in order to select characteristic ensembles per class. This leads to a set of class specific codebooks where each codeword is an ensemble of features. During training, we store the spatial positions of the codeword ensembles with respect to a set of reference points, as well as their temporal positions with respect to the start and end of the action instance. During testing, each activated codeword ensemble casts votes concerning the spatiotemporal position and extend of the action, using the information that was stored during training. Mean Shift mode estimation in the voting space provides the most probable hypotheses concerning the localization of the subjects at each frame, as well as the extend of the activities depicted in the image sequences. We present classification and localization results for a number of publicly available datasets, and for a number of sequences where there is a significant amount of clutter and occlusion.

  5. Enhancing local action planning through quantitative flood risk analysis: a case study in Spain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Castillo-Rodríguez, Jesica Tamara; Escuder-Bueno, Ignacio; Perales-Momparler, Sara; Ramón Porta-Sancho, Juan

    2016-07-01

    This article presents a method to incorporate and promote quantitative risk analysis to support local action planning against flooding. The proposed approach aims to provide a framework for local flood risk analysis, combining hazard mapping with vulnerability data to quantify risk in terms of expected annual affected population, potential injuries, number of fatalities, and economic damages. Flood risk is estimated combining GIS data of loads, system response, and consequences and using event tree modelling for risk calculation. The study area is the city of Oliva, located on the eastern coast of Spain. Results from risk modelling have been used to inform local action planning and to assess the benefits of structural and non-structural risk reduction measures. Results show the potential impact on risk reduction of flood defences and improved warning communication schemes through local action planning: societal flood risk (in terms of annual expected affected population) would be reduced up to 51 % by combining both structural and non-structural measures. In addition, the effect of seasonal population variability is analysed (annual expected affected population ranges from 82 to 107 %, compared with the current situation, depending on occupancy rates in hotels and campsites). Results highlight the need for robust and standardized methods for urban flood risk analysis replicability at regional and national scale.

  6. A Critical Assessment of Marine Aquarist Biodiversity Data and Commercial Aquaculture: Identifying Gaps in Culture Initiatives to Inform Local Fisheries Managers

    PubMed Central

    Murray, Joanna M.; Watson, Gordon J.

    2014-01-01

    It is widely accepted that if well managed, the marine aquarium trade could provide socio-economic stability to local communities while incentivising the maintenance of coral reefs. However, the trade has also been implicated as having potentially widespread environmental impacts that has in part driven developments in aquaculture to relieve wild collection pressures. This study investigates the biodiversity in hobbyist aquaria (using an online survey) and those species currently available from an aquaculture source (commercial data and hobbyist initiatives) in the context of a traffic light system to highlight gaps in aquaculture effort and identify groups that require fisheries assessments. Two hundred and sixty nine species including clown fish, damsels, dotty backs, angelfish, gobies, sea horses and blennies, have reported breeding successes by hobbyists, a pattern mirrored by the European and US commercial organisations. However, there is a mismatch (high demand and low/non-existent aquaculture) for a number of groups including tangs, starfish, anemones and hermit crabs, which we recommend are priority candidates for local stock assessments. Hobbyist perception towards the concept of a sustainable aquarium trade is also explored with results demonstrating that only 40% of respondents were in agreement with industry and scientists who believe the trade could be an exemplar of a sustainable use of coral reefs. We believe that a more transparent evidence base, including the publication of the species collected and cultured, will go some way to align the concept of a sustainable trade across industry stakeholders and better inform the hobbyist when purchasing their aquaria stock. We conclude by proposing that a certification scheme established with government support is the most effective way to move towards a self-regulating industry. It would prevent industry “greenwashing” from multiple certification schemes, alleviate conservation concerns, and, ultimately

  7. A critical assessment of marine aquarist biodiversity data and commercial aquaculture: identifying gaps in culture initiatives to inform local fisheries managers.

    PubMed

    Murray, Joanna M; Watson, Gordon J

    2014-01-01

    It is widely accepted that if well managed, the marine aquarium trade could provide socio-economic stability to local communities while incentivising the maintenance of coral reefs. However, the trade has also been implicated as having potentially widespread environmental impacts that has in part driven developments in aquaculture to relieve wild collection pressures. This study investigates the biodiversity in hobbyist aquaria (using an online survey) and those species currently available from an aquaculture source (commercial data and hobbyist initiatives) in the context of a traffic light system to highlight gaps in aquaculture effort and identify groups that require fisheries assessments. Two hundred and sixty nine species including clown fish, damsels, dotty backs, angelfish, gobies, sea horses and blennies, have reported breeding successes by hobbyists, a pattern mirrored by the European and US commercial organisations. However, there is a mismatch (high demand and low/non-existent aquaculture) for a number of groups including tangs, starfish, anemones and hermit crabs, which we recommend are priority candidates for local stock assessments. Hobbyist perception towards the concept of a sustainable aquarium trade is also explored with results demonstrating that only 40% of respondents were in agreement with industry and scientists who believe the trade could be an exemplar of a sustainable use of coral reefs. We believe that a more transparent evidence base, including the publication of the species collected and cultured, will go some way to align the concept of a sustainable trade across industry stakeholders and better inform the hobbyist when purchasing their aquaria stock. We conclude by proposing that a certification scheme established with government support is the most effective way to move towards a self-regulating industry. It would prevent industry "greenwashing" from multiple certification schemes, alleviate conservation concerns, and, ultimately

  8. Cellular localization of iron(II) polypyridyl complexes determines their anticancer action mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jingjing; Luo, Zuandi; Zhao, Zhennan; Xie, Lina; Zheng, Wenjie; Chen, Tianfeng

    2015-12-01

    Elucidation of relationship among cellular uptake, localization and biological activities of metal complexes could make great breakthrough in the understanding of their action mechanisms and provide useful information for rational design of metal-based anticancer drugs. Iron(II) complexes have emerged as potential anticancer drug candidates with application potential in cancer imaging and therapy. Herein, a series of iron(II) polypyridyl complexes with different lipophilicity were rationally designed, synthesized and identified as potent anticancer agents. The relationship between the cellular localization and molecular action mechanisms of the complexes was also elucidated. The results showed that, the increase in planarity of the Fe(II) polypyridyl complexes enhanced their lipophilicity and cellular uptake, leading to improved anticancer efficacy. The hydrophilic Fe(II) complex entered cancer cells through transferring receptor (TfR)-mediated endocytosis, and translocated to cell nucleus, where they induced S phase cell cycle arrest through triggering DNA damage-mediated p53 pathway. Interestingly, the hydrophobic Fe(II) complexes displayed higher anticancer efficacy than the hydrophilic ones, but shared the same uptake pathway (TfR-mediated endocytosis) in cancer cells. They accumulated and localized in cell cytoplasm, and induced G0/G1 cells cycle arrest through regulation of AKT pathway and activation of downstream effector proteins. These results support that the cellular localization of Fe(II) complexes regulated by their lipophilicity could affect the anticancer efficacy and action mechanisms. Taken together, this study may enhance our understanding on the rational design of the next-generation anticancer metal complexes.

  9. Global biodiversity: indicators of recent declines

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Butchart, Stuart H.M.; Walpole, Matt; Collen, Ben; Van Strien, Arco; Scharlemann, Jorn P.W.; Almond, Rosamunde E.A.; Baillie, Jonathan E.M.; Bomhard, Bastian; Brown, Claire; Bruno, John; Carpenter, Kent E.; Carr, Genevieve M.; Chanson, Janice; Chenery, Anna M.; Csirke, Jorge; Davidson, Nick C.; Dentener, Frank; Foster, Matt; Galli, Alessandro; Galloway, James N.; Genovesi, Piero; Gregory, Richard D.; Hockings, Marc; Kapos, Valerie; Lamarque, Jean-Francois; Leverington, Fiona; Loh, Jonathan; McGeoch, Melodie A.; McRae, Louise; Minasyan, Anahit; Morcillo, Monica Hernandez; Oldfield, Thomasina E.E.; Pauly, Daniel; Quader, Suhel; Revenga, Carmen; Sauer, John R.; Skolnik, Benjamin; Spear, Dian; Stanwell-Smith, Damon; Stuart, Simon N.; Symes, Andy; Tierney, Megan; Tyrrell, Tristan D.; Vie, Jean-Christophe; Watson, Reg

    2011-01-01

    In 2002, world leaders committed, through the Convention on Biological Diversity, to achieve a significant reduction in the rate of biodiversity loss by 2010. We compiled 31 indicators to report on progress toward this target. Most indicators of the state of biodiversity (covering species' population trends, extinction risk, habitat extent and condition, and community composition) showed declines, with no significant recent reductions in rate, whereas indicators of pressures on biodiversity (including resource consumption, invasive alien species, nitrogen pollution, overexploitation, and climate change impacts) showed increases. Despite some local successes and increasing responses (including extent and biodiversity coverage of protected areas, sustainable forest management, policy responses to invasive alien species, and biodiversity-related aid), the rate of biodiversity loss does not appear to be slowing.

  10. Independent component analysis of EEG dipole source localization in resting and action state of brain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Almurshedi, Ahmed; Ismail, Abd Khamim

    2015-04-01

    EEG source localization was studied in order to determine the location of the brain sources that are responsible for the measured potentials at the scalp electrodes using EEGLAB with Independent Component Analysis (ICA) algorithm. Neuron source locations are responsible in generating current dipoles in different states of brain through the measured potentials. The current dipole sources localization are measured by fitting an equivalent current dipole model using a non-linear optimization technique with the implementation of standardized boundary element head model. To fit dipole models to ICA components in an EEGLAB dataset, ICA decomposition is performed and appropriate components to be fitted are selected. The topographical scalp distributions of delta, theta, alpha, and beta power spectrum and cross coherence of EEG signals are observed. In close eyes condition it shows that during resting and action states of brain, alpha band was activated from occipital (O1, O2) and partial (P3, P4) area. Therefore, parieto-occipital area of brain are active in both resting and action state of brain. However cross coherence tells that there is more coherence between right and left hemisphere in action state of brain than that in the resting state. The preliminary result indicates that these potentials arise from the same generators in the brain.

  11. Local anaesthesia through the action of cocaine, the oral mucosa and the Vienna group.

    PubMed

    López-Valverde, A; de Vicente, J; Martínez-Domínguez, L; de Diego, R Gómez

    2014-07-11

    Local anaesthesia through the action of cocaine was introduced in Europe by the Vienna group, which includeed Freud, Koller and Königstein. Before using the alkaloid in animal or human experimentation all these scientists tested it on their oral mucosa - so-called self-experimentation. Some of them with different pathologies (that is, in the case of Freud), eventually became addicted to the alkaloid. Here we attempt to describe the people forming the so-called 'Vienna group', their social milieu, their experiences and internal disputes within the setting of a revolutionary discovery of the times.

  12. Endothelin: Visualization of mRNAs by in situ hybridization provides evidence for local action

    SciTech Connect

    MacCumber, M.W.; Ross, C.A.; Glaser, B.M.; Snyder, S.H. )

    1989-09-01

    Endothelin (ET) is a recently identified vasoactive peptide with three isoforms for which three genes have been cloned. The cellular sites of synthesis of this peptide have not yet been identified in vivo. Using Northern blot analysis, we have detected two forms of ET mRNA in rat tissues: a 3.7-kilobase form in the kidney, eye, and brain, a 2.5-kilobase form in the intestine, and both forms in the lung. We have localized these forms of ET mRNA in several rat tissues using in situ hybridization. In the 19-day rat fetus, ET mRNA is highest in the lung, intestine, and meninges. At high resolution, ET mRNA is localized in the lung to respiratory epithelial cells of bronchioles and apparently in blood vessels. In adult tissues, ET mRNA is present throughout the lung, in the renal medulla vasa recta, and in the iris of the eye. ET mRNA is synthesized in close proximity to ET binding sites in many organs (e.g., lung, kidney, intestine, and eye), suggesting a local action of this peptide. However, in other areas (e.g., heart and renal cortex), ET binding sites are present in the absence of ET mRNA, suggesting an action of ET from the bloodstream or from neurons. Northern blot analysis of ET mRNA in microvascular endothelial cells in culture indicates that ET is synthesized in small blood vessels and regulated similarly to its regulation in large vessels. Our results provide evidence that ET, like other regulatory peptides, may serve in several tissues as a neuromodulator or local hormone.

  13. Biodiversity and Industry Ecosystem Management

    PubMed

    COLEMAN

    1996-11-01

    / The term biodiversity describes the array of interacting, genetically distinct populations and species in a region, the communities they comprise, and the variety of ecosystems of which they are functioning parts. Ecosystem health, a closely related concept, is described in terms of a process identifying biological indicators, end points, and values. The decline of populations or species, an accelerating trend worldwide, can lead to simplification of ecosystem processes, thus threatening the stability and sustainability of ecosystem services directly relevant to human welfare in the chain of economic and ecological relationships. The challenge of addressing issues of such enormous scope and complexity has highlighted the limitations of ecology-as-science. Additionally, biosphere-scale conflicts seem to lie beyond the scope of conventional economics, leading to differences of opinion about the commodity value of biodiversity and of the services that intact ecosystems provide. In the face of these uncertainties, many scientists and economists have adopted principles that clearly assign burdens of proof to those who would promote the loss of biodiversity and that also establish "near-trump" (preeminent) status for ecological integrity. Electric utility facilities and operations impact biodiversity whenever construction, operation, or maintenance of generation, delivery, and support facilities alters landscapes and habitats and thereby impacts species. Although industry is accustomed to dealing with broad environmental concerns (such as global warming or acid rain), the biodiversity issue invokes hemisphere-wide, regional, local, and site-specific concerns all at the same time. Industry can proactively address these issues of scope and scale in two main ways: first, by aligning strategically with the broad research agenda put forth by informed scientists and institutions; and second, by supporting focused management processes whose results will contribute

  14. Designing for Online Collaborations and Local Environmental Action In Citizen Science: A Multiple Case Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kermish-Allen, Ruth

    Traditional citizen science projects have been based on the scientific communities need to gather vast quantities of high quality data, neglecting to ask what the project participants get in return. How can participants be seen more as collaborative partners in citizen science projects? Online communities for citizen science are expanding rapidly, giving participants the opportunity to take part in a wide range of activities, from monitoring invasive species to identifying far-off galaxies. These communities can bring together the virtual and physical worlds in new ways that are egalitarian, collaborative, applied, localized and globalized to solve real environmental problems. There are a small number of citizen science projects that leverage the affordances of an online community to connect, engage, and empower participants to make local change happen. This multiple case study applies a conceptual framework rooted in sociocultural learning theory, Non-Hierarchical Online Learning Communities (NHOLCs), to three online citizen communities that have successfully fostered online collaboration and on-the-ground environmental actions. The purpose of the study is to identify the range and variation of the online and programmatic functions available in each project. The findings lead to recommendations for designing these innovative communities, specifically the technological and programmatic components of online citizen science communities that support environmental actions in our backyards.

  15. National Regulations and Guidelines and the Local Follow-Up in the Chain of Actions in Special Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nilsen, Sven; Herlofsen, Camilla

    2012-01-01

    The topic of this article is the chain of actions in special education in Norwegian compulsory schooling. The main research question is: how do local practise concur with national regulations and guidelines in different phases of the chain of actions in special education? The study is carried out as an evaluation study. The criteria on which the…

  16. Antarctica and the strategic plan for biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Chown, Steven L.; Brooks, Cassandra M.; Terauds, Aleks; Le Bohec, Céline; van Klaveren-Impagliazzo, Céline; Whittington, Jason D.; Butchart, Stuart H. M.; Coetzee, Bernard W. T.; Collen, Ben; Convey, Peter; Gaston, Kevin J.; Gilbert, Neil; Gill, Mike; Höft, Robert; Johnston, Sam; Kennicutt, Mahlon C.; Kriesell, Hannah J.; Le Maho, Yvon; Lynch, Heather J.; Palomares, Maria; Puig-Marcó, Roser; Stoett, Peter; McGeoch, Melodie A.

    2017-01-01

    The Strategic Plan for Biodiversity, adopted under the auspices of the Convention on Biological Diversity, provides the basis for taking effective action to curb biodiversity loss across the planet by 2020—an urgent imperative. Yet, Antarctica and the Southern Ocean, which encompass 10% of the planet’s surface, are excluded from assessments of progress against the Strategic Plan. The situation is a lost opportunity for biodiversity conservation globally. We provide such an assessment. Our evidence suggests, surprisingly, that for a region so remote and apparently pristine as the Antarctic, the biodiversity outlook is similar to that for the rest of the planet. Promisingly, however, much scope for remedial action exists. PMID:28350825

  17. Collapse of biodiversity in fractured metacommunities

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, Charles; Mehta, Pankaj

    2014-03-01

    The increasing threat to global biodiversity from climate change, habitat destruction, and other anthropogenic factors motivates the search for features that increase the resistance of ecological communities to destructive disturbances. Recently, Gibson et al (Science 2013) observed that the damming of the Khlong Saeng river in Thailand caused a rapid collapse of biodiversity in the remaining tropical forests. Using a theoretical model that maps the distribution of coexisting species in an ecological community to a disordered system of Ising spins, we show that fracturing a metacommunity by inhibiting species dispersal leads to a collapse in biodiversity in the constituent local communities. The biodiversity collapse can be modeled as a diffusion on a rough energy landscape, and the resulting estimate for the rate of extinction highlights the role of species functional diversity in maintaining biodiversity following a disturbance.

  18. Mutual and asynchronous anticipation and action in sports as globally competitive and locally coordinative dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Fujii, Keisuke; Isaka, Tadao; Kouzaki, Motoki; Yamamoto, Yuji

    2015-01-01

    Humans interact by changing their actions, perceiving other’s actions and executing solutions in conflicting situations. Using oscillator models, nonlinear dynamics have been considered for describing these complex human movements as an emergence of self-organisation. However, these frameworks cannot explain the hierarchical structures of complex behaviours between conflicting inter-agent and adapting intra-agent systems, especially in sport competitions wherein mutually quick decision making and execution are required. Here we adopt a hybrid multiscale approach to model an attack-and-defend game during which both players predict the opponent’s movement and move with a delay. From both simulated and measured data, one synchronous outcome between two-agent (i.e. successful defence) can be described as one attractor. In contrast, the other coordination-breaking outcome (i.e. successful attack) cannot be explained using gradient dynamics because the asymmetric interaction cannot always assume a conserved physical quantity. Instead, we provide the asymmetric and asynchronous hierarchical dynamical models to discuss two-agent competition. Our framework suggests that possessing information about an opponent and oneself in local-coordinative and global-competitive scale enables us to gain a deeper understanding of sports competitions. We anticipate developments in the scientific fields of complex movement adapting to such uncontrolled environments. PMID:26538452

  19. Mutual and asynchronous anticipation and action in sports as globally competitive and locally coordinative dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fujii, Keisuke; Isaka, Tadao; Kouzaki, Motoki; Yamamoto, Yuji

    2015-11-01

    Humans interact by changing their actions, perceiving other’s actions and executing solutions in conflicting situations. Using oscillator models, nonlinear dynamics have been considered for describing these complex human movements as an emergence of self-organisation. However, these frameworks cannot explain the hierarchical structures of complex behaviours between conflicting inter-agent and adapting intra-agent systems, especially in sport competitions wherein mutually quick decision making and execution are required. Here we adopt a hybrid multiscale approach to model an attack-and-defend game during which both players predict the opponent’s movement and move with a delay. From both simulated and measured data, one synchronous outcome between two-agent (i.e. successful defence) can be described as one attractor. In contrast, the other coordination-breaking outcome (i.e. successful attack) cannot be explained using gradient dynamics because the asymmetric interaction cannot always assume a conserved physical quantity. Instead, we provide the asymmetric and asynchronous hierarchical dynamical models to discuss two-agent competition. Our framework suggests that possessing information about an opponent and oneself in local-coordinative and global-competitive scale enables us to gain a deeper understanding of sports competitions. We anticipate developments in the scientific fields of complex movement adapting to such uncontrolled environments.

  20. Conservation planning for biodiversity and wilderness: a real-world example.

    PubMed

    Ceauşu, Silvia; Gomes, Inês; Pereira, Henrique Miguel

    2015-05-01

    Several of the most important conservation prioritization approaches select markedly different areas at global and regional scales. They are designed to maximize a certain biodiversity dimension such as coverage of species in the case of hotspots and complementarity, or composite properties of ecosystems in the case of wilderness. Most comparisons between approaches have ignored the multidimensionality of biodiversity. We analyze here the results of two species-based methodologies-hotspots and complementarity-and an ecosystem-based methodology-wilderness-at local scale. As zoning of protected areas can increase the effectiveness of conservation, we use the data employed for the management plan of the Peneda-Gerês National Park in Portugal. We compare the approaches against four criteria: species representativeness, wilderness coverage, coverage of important areas for megafauna, and for regulating ecosystem services. Our results suggest that species- and ecosystem-based approaches select significantly different areas at local scale. Our results also show that no approach covers well all biodiversity dimensions. Species-based approaches cover species distribution better, while the ecosystem-based approach favors wilderness, areas important for megafauna, and for ecosystem services. Management actions addressing different dimensions of biodiversity have a potential for contradictory effects, social conflict, and ecosystem services trade-offs, especially in the context of current European biodiversity policies. However, biodiversity is multidimensional, and management and zoning at local level should reflect this aspect. The consideration of both species- and ecosystem-based approaches at local scale is necessary to achieve a wider range of conservation goals.

  1. Biodiversity and industry ecosystem management

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Coleman, William G.

    1996-11-01

    The term biodiversity describes the array of interacting, genetically distinct populations and species in a region, the communities they comprise, and the variety of ecosystems of which they are functioning parts. Ecosystem health, a closely related concept, is described in terms of a process identifying biological indicators, end points, and values. The decline of populations or species, an accelerating trend worldwide, can lead to simplification of ecosystem processes, thus threatening the stability and sustainability of ecosystem services directly relevant to human welfare in the chain of economic and ecological relationships. The challenge of addressing issues of such enormous scope and complexity has highlighted the limitations of ecology-as-science. Additionally, biosphere-scale conflicts seem to lie beyond the scope of conventional economics, leading to differences of opinion about the commodity value of biodiversity and of the services that intact ecosystems provide. In the face of these uncertainties, many scientists and economists have adopted principles that clearly assign burdens of proof to those who would promote the loss of biodiversity and that also establish “near-trump” (preeminent) status for ecological integrity. Electric utility facilities and operations impact biodiversity whenever construction, operation, or maintenance of generation, delivery, and support facilities alters landscapes and habitats and thereby impacts species. Although industry is accustomed to dealing with broad environmental concerns (such as global warming or acid rain), the biodiversity issue invokes hemisphere-wide, regional, local, and site-specific concerns all at the same time. Industry can proactively address these issues of scope and scale in two main ways: first, by aligning strategically with the broad research agenda put forth by informed scientists and institutions; and second, by supporting focused management processes whose results will contribute

  2. Biodiversity and industry ecosystem management

    SciTech Connect

    Coleman, W.G.

    1996-11-01

    Biodiversity describes the array of interacting, genetically distinct populations and species in a region, the communities they are functioning parts. Ecosystem health is a process identifying biological indicators, end points, and values. The decline of populations or species, an accelerating trend worldwide, can lead to simplification of ecosystem processes, thus threatening the stability an sustainability of ecosystem services directly relevant to human welfare in the chain of economic and ecological relationships. The challenge of addressing issues of such enormous scope and complexity has highlighted the limitations of ecology-as-science. Additionally, biosphere-scale conflicts seem to lie beyond the scope of conventional economics, leading to differences of opinion about the commodity value of biodiversity and of the services that intact ecosystems provide. In the fact of these uncertainties, many scientists and economists have adopted principles that clearly assign burdens of proof to those who would promote the loss of biodiversity and that also establish {open_quotes}near-trump{close_quotes} (preeminent) status for ecological integrity. Electric utility facilities and operations impact biodiversity whenever construction, operation, or maintenance of generation, delivery, and support facilities alters landscapes and habitats and thereby impacts species. Although industry is accustomed to dealing with broad environmental concerns (such as global warming or acid rain), the biodiversity issue invokes hemisphere-side, regional, local, and site-specific concerns all at the same time. Industry can proactively address these issues of scope and scale in two main ways: first, by aligning strategically with the broad research agenda put forth by informed scientists and institutions; and second, by supporting focused management processes whose results will contribute incrementally to the broader agenda of rebuilding or maintaining biodiversity. 40 refs., 8 figs.

  3. Action Enhances Acoustic Cues for 3-D Target Localization by Echolocating Bats.

    PubMed

    Wohlgemuth, Melville J; Kothari, Ninad B; Moss, Cynthia F

    2016-09-01

    Under natural conditions, animals encounter a barrage of sensory information from which they must select and interpret biologically relevant signals. Active sensing can facilitate this process by engaging motor systems in the sampling of sensory information. The echolocating bat serves as an excellent model to investigate the coupling between action and sensing because it adaptively controls both the acoustic signals used to probe the environment and movements to receive echoes at the auditory periphery. We report here that the echolocating bat controls the features of its sonar vocalizations in tandem with the positioning of the outer ears to maximize acoustic cues for target detection and localization. The bat's adaptive control of sonar vocalizations and ear positioning occurs on a millisecond timescale to capture spatial information from arriving echoes, as well as on a longer timescale to track target movement. Our results demonstrate that purposeful control over sonar sound production and reception can serve to improve acoustic cues for localization tasks. This finding also highlights the general importance of movement to sensory processing across animal species. Finally, our discoveries point to important parallels between spatial perception by echolocation and vision.

  4. Action Enhances Acoustic Cues for 3-D Target Localization by Echolocating Bats

    PubMed Central

    Wohlgemuth, Melville J.

    2016-01-01

    Under natural conditions, animals encounter a barrage of sensory information from which they must select and interpret biologically relevant signals. Active sensing can facilitate this process by engaging motor systems in the sampling of sensory information. The echolocating bat serves as an excellent model to investigate the coupling between action and sensing because it adaptively controls both the acoustic signals used to probe the environment and movements to receive echoes at the auditory periphery. We report here that the echolocating bat controls the features of its sonar vocalizations in tandem with the positioning of the outer ears to maximize acoustic cues for target detection and localization. The bat’s adaptive control of sonar vocalizations and ear positioning occurs on a millisecond timescale to capture spatial information from arriving echoes, as well as on a longer timescale to track target movement. Our results demonstrate that purposeful control over sonar sound production and reception can serve to improve acoustic cues for localization tasks. This finding also highlights the general importance of movement to sensory processing across animal species. Finally, our discoveries point to important parallels between spatial perception by echolocation and vision. PMID:27608186

  5. Biodiverse Planting for Carbon and Biodiversity on Indigenous Land

    PubMed Central

    Renwick, Anna R.; Robinson, Catherine J.; Martin, Tara G.; May, Tracey; Polglase, Phil; Possingham, Hugh P.; Carwardine, Josie

    2014-01-01

    Carbon offset mechanisms have been established to mitigate climate change through changes in land management. Regulatory frameworks enable landowners and managers to generate saleable carbon credits on domestic and international markets. Identifying and managing the associated co-benefits and dis-benefits involved in the adoption of carbon offset projects is important for the projects to contribute to the broader goal of sustainable development and the provision of benefits to the local communities. So far it has been unclear how Indigenous communities can benefit from such initiatives. We provide a spatial analysis of the carbon and biodiversity potential of one offset method, planting biodiverse native vegetation, on Indigenous land across Australia. We discover significant potential for opportunities for Indigenous communities to achieve carbon sequestration and biodiversity goals through biodiverse plantings, largely in southern and eastern Australia, but the economic feasibility of these projects depend on carbon market assumptions. Our national scale cost-effectiveness analysis is critical to enable Indigenous communities to maximise the benefits available to them through participation in carbon offset schemes. PMID:24637736

  6. Loss of Biodiversity and Climate Change as Presented in Biology Curricula for Ethiopian Schools: Implications for Action-Oriented Environmental Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dalelo, Aklilu

    2012-01-01

    Schools, as institutions for general education, are believed to have a responsibility to equip their students with the knowledge and commitment to take personally meaningful decisions and action to address the challenges posed by both lifestyle and societal conditions. Achieving this goal requires, among other things, adequate integration of the…

  7. Threats to China's Biodiversity by Contradictions Policy.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Heran; Cao, Shixiong

    2015-02-01

    China has among the highest biodiversities in the world, but faces extreme biodiversity losses due to the country's huge population and its recent explosive socioeconomic development. Despite huge efforts and investments by the government and Chinese society to conserve biodiversity, especially in recent decades, biodiversity losses may not have been reversed, and may even have been exacerbated by unintended consequences resulting from these projects. China's centralized approach to biodiversity conservation, with limited local participation, creates an inflexible and inefficient approach because of conflicts between local communities and national administrators over the benefits. Although community-based conservation may be an imperfect approach, it is an essential component of a successful future national conservation plan. Biodiversity conservation should be considered from the perspective of systems engineering and a governance structure that combines centralization with community-level conservation. In this paper, we describe China's complex challenge: how to manage interactions between humans and nature to find win-win solutions that can ensure long-term biodiversity conservation without sacrificing human concerns.

  8. Neoadjuvant therapy for localized prostate cancer: Examining mechanism of action and efficacy within the tumor

    PubMed Central

    Lou, David Y.; Fong, Lawrence

    2015-01-01

    Objectives Efforts to improve the clinical outcome for patients with localized high-risk prostate cancer have led to the development of neoadjuvant systemic therapies. We review the different modalities of neoadjuvant therapies for localized prostate cancer and highlight emerging treatment approaches including immunotherapy and targeted therapy. Methods We performed a PubMed search of clinical trials evaluating preoperative systemic therapies for treating high-risk prostate cancer published after 2000, and those studies with the highest clinical relevance to current treatment approaches were selected for review. The database at clinicaltrials.gov was queried for neoadjuvant studies in high-risk prostate cancer, and those evaluating novel targeted therapies and immunotherapies are spotlighted here. Results Neoadjuvant chemotherapy has become standard of care for treating some malignancies, including breast and bladder cancers. In prostate cancer, preoperative hormonal therapy or chemotherapy has failed to demonstrate improvements in overall survival. Nevertheless, the emergence of novel treatment modalities such as targeted small molecules and immunotherapy has spawned neoadjuvant clinical trials that provide a unique vantage from which to study mechanism of action and biological potency. Tissue-based biomarkers are being developed to elucidate the biological efficacy of these treatments. With targeted therapy, these can include phospho-proteomic signatures of target pathway activation and deactivation. With immunotherapies, including sipuleucel-T and ipilimumab, recruitment of immune cells to the tumor microenvironment can also be used as robust markers of a biological effect. Such studies can provide insight not only into mechanism of action for these therapies but can also provide paths forward to improving clinical efficacy like with rationally designed combinations and dose selection. Conclusions The use of neoadjuvant androgen-deprivation therapy and

  9. Study of the all orders multiplicative renormalizability of a local confining quark action in the Landau gauge

    SciTech Connect

    Capri, M.A.L. Fiorentini, D. Sorella, S.P.

    2015-05-15

    The inverse of the Faddeev–Popov operator plays a pivotal role within the Gribov–Zwanziger approach to the quantization of Euclidean Yang–Mills theories in Landau gauge. Following a recent proposal (Capri et al., 2014), we show that the inverse of the Faddeev–Popov operator can be consistently coupled to quark fields. Such a coupling gives rise to a local action while reproducing the behaviour of the quark propagator observed in lattice numerical simulations in the non-perturbative infrared region. By using the algebraic renormalization framework, we prove that the aforementioned local action is multiplicatively renormalizable to all orders.

  10. Global priorities for an effective information basis of biodiversity distributions

    PubMed Central

    Meyer, Carsten; Kreft, Holger; Guralnick, Robert; Jetz, Walter

    2015-01-01

    Gaps in digital accessible information (DAI) on species distributions hamper prospects of safeguarding biodiversity and ecosystem services, and addressing central ecological and evolutionary questions. Achieving international targets on biodiversity knowledge requires that information gaps be identified and actions prioritized. Integrating 157 million point records and distribution maps for 21,170 terrestrial vertebrate species, we find that outside a few well-sampled regions, DAI on point occurrences provides very limited and spatially biased inventories of species. Surprisingly, many large, emerging economies are even more under-represented in global DAI than species-rich, developing countries in the tropics. Multi-model inference reveals that completeness is mainly limited by distance to researchers, locally available research funding and participation in data-sharing networks, rather than transportation infrastructure, or size and funding of Western data contributors as often assumed. Our results highlight the urgent need for integrating non-Western data sources and intensifying cooperation to more effectively address societal biodiversity information needs. PMID:26348291

  11. Essential biodiversity variables

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Pereira, H.M.; Ferrier, S.; Walters, M.; Geller, G.N.; Jongman, R.H.G.; Scholes, R.J.; Bruford, M.W.; Brummitt, N.; Butchart, S.H.M.; Cardoso, A.C.; Coops, N.C.; Dulloo, E.; Faith, D.P.; Freyhof, J.; Gregory, R.D.; Heip, C.; Höft, R.; Hurtt, G.; Jetz, W.; Karp, D.S.; McGeoch, M.A.; Obura, D.; Onada, Y.; Pettorelli, N.; Reyers, B.; Sayre, R.; Scharlemann, J.P.W.; Stuart, S.N.; Turak, E.; Walpole, M.; Wegmann, M.

    2013-01-01

    Reducing the rate of biodiversity loss and averting dangerous biodiversity change are international goals, reasserted by the Aichi Targets for 2020 by Parties to the United Nations (UN) Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) after failure to meet the 2010 target (1, 2). However, there is no global, harmonized observation system for delivering regular, timely data on biodiversity change (3). With the first plenary meeting of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) soon under way, partners from the Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON) (4) are developing—and seeking consensus around—Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBVs) that could form the basis of monitoring programs worldwide.

  12. Locality sensitivity discriminant analysis-based feature ranking of human emotion actions recognition

    PubMed Central

    Khair, Nurnadia M.; Hariharan, M.; Yaacob, S.; Basah, Shafriza Nisha

    2015-01-01

    [Purpose] Computational intelligence similar to pattern recognition is frequently confronted with high-dimensional data. Therefore, the reduction of the dimensionality is critical to make the manifold features amenable. Procedures that are analytically or computationally manageable in smaller amounts of data and low-dimensional space can become important to produce a better classification performance. [Methods] Thus, we proposed two stage reduction techniques. Feature selection-based ranking using information gain (IG) and Chi-square (Chisq) are used to identify the best ranking of the features selected for emotion classification in different actions including knocking, throwing, and lifting. Then, feature reduction-based locality sensitivity discriminant analysis (LSDA) and principal component analysis (PCA) are used to transform the selected feature to low-dimensional space. Two-stage feature selection-reduction methods such as IG-PCA, IG-LSDA, Chisq-PCA, and Chisq-LSDA are proposed. [Results] The result confirms that applying feature ranking combined with a dimensional-reduction method increases the performance of the classifiers. [Conclusion] The dimension reduction was performed using LSDA by denoting the features of the highest importance determined using IG and Chisq to not only improve the effectiveness but also reduce the computational time. PMID:26357453

  13. The action of local anesthetics on myelin structure and nerve conduction in toad sciatic nerve.

    PubMed

    Mateu, L; Morán, O; Padrón, R; Borgo, M; Vonasek, E; Márquez, G; Luzzati, V

    1997-06-01

    X-ray scattering and electrophysiological experiments were performed on toad sciatic nerves in the presence of local anesthetics. In vitro experiments were performed on dissected nerves superfused with Ringer's solutions containing procaine, lidocaine, tetracaine, or dibucaine. In vivo experiments were performed on nerves dissected from animals anesthesized by targeted injections of tetracaine-containing solutions. In all cases the anesthetics were found to have the same effects on the x-ray scattering spectra: the intensity ratio of the even-order to the odd-order reflections increases and the lattice parameter increases. These changes are reversible upon removal of the anesthetic. The magnitude of the structural changes varies with the duration of the superfusion and with the nature and concentration of the anesthetic molecule. A striking quantitative correlation was observed between the structural effects and the potency of the anesthetic. Electron density profiles, which hardly showed any structural alteration of the unit membrane, clearly indicated that the anesthetics have the effect of moving the pairs of membranes apart by increasing the thickness of the cytoplasmic space. Electrophysiological measurements performed on the very samples used in the x-ray scattering experiments showed that the amplitude of the compound action potential is affected earlier than the structure of myelin (as revealed by the x-ray scattering experiments), whereas conduction velocity closely follows the structural alterations.

  14. BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION INCENTIVE PROGRAMS FOR PRIVATELY OWNED FORESTS

    EPA Science Inventory

    In many countries, a large proportion of forest biodiversity exists on private land. Legal restrictions are often inadequate to prevent loss of habitat and encourage forest owners to manage areas for biodiversity, especially when these management actions require time, money, and ...

  15. Polarized localization of voltage-gated Na+ channels is regulated by concerted FGF13 and FGF14 action.

    PubMed

    Pablo, Juan Lorenzo; Wang, Chaojian; Presby, Matthew M; Pitt, Geoffrey S

    2016-05-10

    Clustering of voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSCs) within the neuronal axon initial segment (AIS) is critical for efficient action potential initiation. Although initially inserted into both somatodendritic and axonal membranes, VGSCs are concentrated within the axon through mechanisms that include preferential axonal targeting and selective somatodendritic endocytosis. How the endocytic machinery specifically targets somatic VGSCs is unknown. Here, using knockdown strategies, we show that noncanonical FGF13 binds directly to VGSCs in hippocampal neurons to limit their somatodendritic surface expression, although exerting little effect on VGSCs within the AIS. In contrast, homologous FGF14, which is highly concentrated in the proximal axon, binds directly to VGSCs to promote their axonal localization. Single-point mutations in FGF13 or FGF14 abrogating VGSC interaction in vitro cannot support these specific functions in neurons. Thus, our data show how the concerted actions of FGF13 and FGF14 regulate the polarized localization of VGSCs that supports efficient action potential initiation.

  16. Polarized localization of voltage-gated Na+ channels is regulated by concerted FGF13 and FGF14 action

    PubMed Central

    Pablo, Juan Lorenzo; Wang, Chaojian; Presby, Matthew M.; Pitt, Geoffrey S.

    2016-01-01

    Clustering of voltage-gated sodium channels (VGSCs) within the neuronal axon initial segment (AIS) is critical for efficient action potential initiation. Although initially inserted into both somatodendritic and axonal membranes, VGSCs are concentrated within the axon through mechanisms that include preferential axonal targeting and selective somatodendritic endocytosis. How the endocytic machinery specifically targets somatic VGSCs is unknown. Here, using knockdown strategies, we show that noncanonical FGF13 binds directly to VGSCs in hippocampal neurons to limit their somatodendritic surface expression, although exerting little effect on VGSCs within the AIS. In contrast, homologous FGF14, which is highly concentrated in the proximal axon, binds directly to VGSCs to promote their axonal localization. Single-point mutations in FGF13 or FGF14 abrogating VGSC interaction in vitro cannot support these specific functions in neurons. Thus, our data show how the concerted actions of FGF13 and FGF14 regulate the polarized localization of VGSCs that supports efficient action potential initiation. PMID:27044086

  17. Coordinating for Arctic Conservation: Implementing Integrated Arctic Biodiversity Monitoring, Data Management and Reporting

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gill, M.; Svoboda, M.

    2012-12-01

    Arctic ecosystems and the biodiversity they support are experiencing growing pressure from various stressors (e.g. development, climate change, contaminants, etc.) while established research and monitoring programs remain largely uncoordinated, lacking the ability to effectively monitor, understand and report on biodiversity trends at the circumpolar scale. The maintenance of healthy arctic ecosystems is a global imperative as the Arctic plays a critical role in the Earth's physical, chemical and biological balance. A coordinated and comprehensive effort for monitoring arctic ecosystems is needed to facilitate effective and timely conservation and adaptation actions. The Arctic's size and complexity represents a significant challenge towards detecting and attributing important biodiversity trends. This demands a scaled, pan-arctic, ecosystem-based approach that not only identifies trends in biodiversity, but also identifies underlying causes. It is critical that this information be made available to generate effective strategies for adapting to changes now taking place in the Arctic—a process that ultimately depends on rigorous, integrated, and efficient monitoring programs that have the power to detect change within a "management" time frame. To meet these challenges and in response to the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment's recommendation to expand and enhance arctic biodiversity monitoring, the Conservation of Arctic Flora and Fauna (CAFF) Working Group of the Arctic Council launched the Circumpolar Biodiversity Monitoring Program (CBMP). The CBMP is led by Environment Canada on behalf of Canada and the Arctic Council. The CBMP is working with over 60 global partners to expand, integrate and enhance existing arctic biodiversity research and monitoring efforts to facilitate more rapid detection, communication and response to significant trends and pressures. Towards this end, the CBMP has established three Expert Monitoring Groups representing major Arctic

  18. The power of local action in occupational health: the adoption of local exhaust ventilation in the Chicago tuckpointing trade

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Background Silica is a pervasive and potentially deadly occupational hazard in construction. The occupational risk posed by silica has long been known, but efforts to use engineering controls to minimize dust generation in tuckpointing operations, a masonry restoration specialty, have been slow. Objectives The objective of this study is to explore how local innovation in occupational safety and health may emerge, absent the establishment of national standards. Method This study uses a case study to explore the adoption of local exhaust ventilation in tuckpointing operations in the Chicago area. Sources of data for this research include interviews with a diverse range of key informants and the review of archival material. Results This case study found local unions, municipal regulators, contractors, and major public users of construction services played a central role in the events and milestones that led to the early adoption of local exhaust ventilation in Chicago. The adoption of local exhaust ventilation technology in Chicago demonstrates the potential for local actors to fill an important void when rulemaking in vital areas of occupational of health impedes effective national regulation. PMID:27362634

  19. Biodiversity Conservation through Environmental Education for Sustainable Development--A Case Study from Puducherry, India

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ramadoss, Alexandar; Poyya Moli, Gopalsamy

    2011-01-01

    Promoting students commitment to protect local biodiversity is an important goal of education for sustainable development in India and elsewhere. The main focus of the biodiversity education was to create knowledge, interest and necessary skills to solve various biodiversity problems with reference to the local context. In order to develop the…

  20. Hollow rhodoliths increase Svalbard's shelf biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teichert, Sebastian

    2014-11-01

    Rhodoliths are coralline red algal assemblages that commonly occur in marine habitats from the tropics to polar latitudes. They form rigid structures of high-magnesium calcite and have a good fossil record. Here I show that rhodoliths are ecosystem engineers in a high Arctic environment that increase local biodiversity by providing habitat. Gouged by boring mussels, originally solid rhodoliths become hollow ecospheres intensely colonised by benthic organisms. In the examined shelf areas, biodiversity in rhodolith-bearing habitats is significantly greater than in habitats without rhodoliths and hollow rhodoliths yield a greater biodiversity than solid ones. This biodiversity, however, is threatened because hollow rhodoliths take a long time to form and are susceptible to global change and anthropogenic impacts such as trawl net fisheries that can destroy hollow rhodoliths. Rhodoliths and other forms of coralline red algae play a key role in a plurality of environments and need improved management and protection plans.

  1. Hollow rhodoliths increase Svalbard's shelf biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Teichert, Sebastian

    2014-01-01

    Rhodoliths are coralline red algal assemblages that commonly occur in marine habitats from the tropics to polar latitudes. They form rigid structures of high-magnesium calcite and have a good fossil record. Here I show that rhodoliths are ecosystem engineers in a high Arctic environment that increase local biodiversity by providing habitat. Gouged by boring mussels, originally solid rhodoliths become hollow ecospheres intensely colonised by benthic organisms. In the examined shelf areas, biodiversity in rhodolith-bearing habitats is significantly greater than in habitats without rhodoliths and hollow rhodoliths yield a greater biodiversity than solid ones. This biodiversity, however, is threatened because hollow rhodoliths take a long time to form and are susceptible to global change and anthropogenic impacts such as trawl net fisheries that can destroy hollow rhodoliths. Rhodoliths and other forms of coralline red algae play a key role in a plurality of environments and need improved management and protection plans. PMID:25382656

  2. Bisphosphonate action. Alendronate localization in rat bone and effects on osteoclast ultrastructure.

    PubMed Central

    Sato, M; Grasser, W; Endo, N; Akins, R; Simmons, H; Thompson, D D; Golub, E; Rodan, G A

    1991-01-01

    Studies of the mode of action of the bisphosphonate alendronate showed that 1 d after the injection of 0.4 mg/kg [3H]alendronate to newborn rats, 72% of the osteoclastic surface, 2% of the bone forming, and 13% of all other surfaces were densely labeled. Silver grains were seen above the osteoclasts and no other cells. 6 d later the label was 600-1,000 microns away from the epiphyseal plate and buried inside the bone, indicating normal growth and matrix deposition on top of alendronate-containing bone. Osteoclasts from adult animals, infused with parathyroid hormone-related peptide (1-34) and treated with 0.4 mg/kg alendronate subcutaneously for 2 d, all lacked ruffled border but not clear zone. In vitro alendronate bound to bone particles with a Kd of approximately 1 mM and a capacity of 100 nmol/mg at pH 7. At pH 3.5 binding was reduced by 50%. Alendronate inhibited bone resorption by isolated chicken or rat osteoclasts when the amount on the bone surface was around 1.3 x 10(-3) fmol/microns 2, which would produce a concentration of 0.1-1 mM in the resorption space if 50% were released. At these concentrations membrane leakiness to calcium was observed. These findings suggest that alendronate binds to resorption surfaces, is locally released during acidification, the rise in concentration stops resorption and membrane ruffling, without destroying the osteoclasts. Images PMID:1661297

  3. 78 FR 19353 - Biodiversity Beyond National Jurisdiction; Notice of Public Meeting

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-03-29

    ... Biodiversity Beyond National Jurisdiction; Notice of Public Meeting ACTION: Notice of public meeting. SUMMARY... biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction. DATES: The public meeting will be held on April 23, 2013... negotiations on marine biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction, such as the meeting of the UN BBNJ...

  4. 77 FR 6820 - Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request: Creating Stewardship Through Biodiversity...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-02-09

    ... Biodiversity Discovery in National Parks AGENCY: National Park Service (NPS), Interior. ACTION: Notice; request... of Biodiversity Discovery efforts. To comply with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 and as a part...). SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Abstract Biodiversity Discovery refers to a variety of efforts to discover...

  5. Origins of Biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Benton, Michael J

    2016-11-01

    Biodiversity today is huge, and it has a long history. Identifying rules for the heterogeneity of modern biodiversity-the high to low species richness of different clades-has been hard. There are measurable biodiversity differences between land and sea and between the tropics and temperate-polar regions. Some analyses suggest that the net age of a clade can determine its extinction risk, but this is equivocal. New work shows that, through geological time, clades pass through different diversification regimes, and those regimes constrain the balance of tree size and the nature of branching events.

  6. 29 CFR 1608.7 - Affirmative action plans or programs under State or local law.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-07-01

    ... OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION AFFIRMATIVE ACTION APPROPRIATE UNDER TITLE VII OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1964, AS... Commission will, in accordance with the “substantial weight” provisions of section 706 of the Act, find...

  7. 29 CFR 1608.7 - Affirmative action plans or programs under State or local law.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-07-01

    ... OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION AFFIRMATIVE ACTION APPROPRIATE UNDER TITLE VII OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1964, AS... Commission will, in accordance with the “substantial weight” provisions of section 706 of the Act, find...

  8. 29 CFR 1608.7 - Affirmative action plans or programs under State or local law.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-07-01

    ... OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION AFFIRMATIVE ACTION APPROPRIATE UNDER TITLE VII OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1964, AS... Commission will, in accordance with the “substantial weight” provisions of section 706 of the Act, find...

  9. 29 CFR 1608.7 - Affirmative action plans or programs under State or local law.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-07-01

    ... OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION AFFIRMATIVE ACTION APPROPRIATE UNDER TITLE VII OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1964, AS... Commission will, in accordance with the “substantial weight” provisions of section 706 of the Act, find...

  10. 29 CFR 1608.7 - Affirmative action plans or programs under State or local law.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-07-01

    ... OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION AFFIRMATIVE ACTION APPROPRIATE UNDER TITLE VII OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS ACT OF 1964, AS... Commission will, in accordance with the “substantial weight” provisions of section 706 of the Act, find...

  11. The biodiversity-dependent ecosystem service debt.

    PubMed

    Isbell, Forest; Tilman, David; Polasky, Stephen; Loreau, Michel

    2015-02-01

    Habitat destruction is driving biodiversity loss in remaining ecosystems, and ecosystem functioning and services often directly depend on biodiversity. Thus, biodiversity loss is likely creating an ecosystem service debt: a gradual loss of biodiversity-dependent benefits that people obtain from remaining fragments of natural ecosystems. Here, we develop an approach for quantifying ecosystem service debts, and illustrate its use to estimate how one anthropogenic driver, habitat destruction, could indirectly diminish one ecosystem service, carbon storage, by creating an extinction debt. We estimate that c. 2-21 Pg C could be gradually emitted globally in remaining ecosystem fragments because of plant species loss caused by nearby habitat destruction. The wide range for this estimate reflects substantial uncertainties in how many plant species will be lost, how much species loss will impact ecosystem functioning and whether plant species loss will decrease soil carbon. Our exploratory analysis suggests that biodiversity-dependent ecosystem service debts can be globally substantial, even when locally small, if they occur diffusely across vast areas of remaining ecosystems. There is substantial value in conserving not only the quantity (area), but also the quality (biodiversity) of natural ecosystems for the sustainable provision of ecosystem services.

  12. Local actions of angiotensin II: quantitative in vitro autoradiographic localization of angiotensin II receptor binding and angiotensin converting enzyme in target tissues

    SciTech Connect

    Chai, S.Y.; Allen, A.M.; Adam, W.R.; Mendelsohn, F.A.

    1986-01-01

    In order to gain insight into the local actions of angiotensin II (ANG II) we have determined the distribution of a component of the effector system for the peptide, the ANG II receptor, and that of an enzyme-catalysing ANG II formation, angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE), by in vitro autoradiography in several target tissues. The superagonist ANG II analog, /sup 125/I(Sar1)ANG II, or the antagonist analog, /sup 125/I(Sar1,Ile8)ANG II, were used as specific radioligands for ANG II receptors. A derivative of the specific ACE inhibitor, lysinopril, called /sup 125/I-351A, was used to label ACE in tissues. In the adrenal, a high density of ANG II receptors occurs in the glomerulosa zone of the cortex and in the medulla. ACE is also localized in these two zones, indicating that local production of ANG II may occur close to its sites of action in the zona glomerulosa and adrenal medulla. In the kidney, a high density of ANG II receptors is associated with glomeruli in the cortex and also with vasa recta bundles in the inner stripe of the outer medulla. ACE is found in very high concentration in deep proximal convoluted tubules of the cortex, while much lower concentrations of the enzyme occur in the vascular endothelium throughout the kidney. In the central nervous system three classes of relationships between ANG II receptors and ACE are observed: In the circumventricular organs, including the subfornical organ and organum vasculosum of the lamina terminalis, a high concentration of both components occurs. Since these structures have a deficient blood-brain barrier, local conversion of circulating angiotensin I (ANG I) to ANG II may contribute to the action of ANG II at these sites.

  13. N400 effect when a semantic anomaly is detected in action representation. A source localization analysis.

    PubMed

    Balconi, Michela; Vitaloni, Silvia

    2014-02-01

    The strength relationship between action and language was largely discussed. In the present research, we explored this link by considering the cortical response (N400 event-related potential effect) to the semantic incongruence induced by a final anomalous object-related action within an actions' sequence. Seventeen participants performed an explicit task to distinguish congruous from incongruous final target action. Event-related potentials analysis showed a significant N400-like effect more frontally (dorsolateral prefrontal cortex) and temporoparietal (mainly left supramarginal gyrus) distribution in response to incongruous condition. It can be argued that the N400-like effect is similar in nature to the N400, which is generally evoked by linguistic stimuli. Nevertheless, the cortical source analysis (low-resolution electromagnetic tomography) showed significant differences for the cortical generators induced by an action processing. This fact may be explained by assuming that object-related action representation activates a specific cortical network, more directly related to congruous/incongruous object use comprehension in relationship with a specific context.

  14. Contextual action recognition and target localization with an active allocation of attention on a humanoid robot.

    PubMed

    Ognibene, Dimitri; Chinellato, Eris; Sarabia, Miguel; Demiris, Yiannis

    2013-09-01

    Exploratory gaze movements are fundamental for gathering the most relevant information regarding the partner during social interactions. Inspired by the cognitive mechanisms underlying human social behaviour, we have designed and implemented a system for a dynamic attention allocation which is able to actively control gaze movements during a visual action recognition task exploiting its own action execution predictions. Our humanoid robot is able, during the observation of a partner's reaching movement, to contextually estimate the goal position of the partner's hand and the location in space of the candidate targets. This is done while actively gazing around the environment, with the purpose of optimizing the gathering of information relevant for the task. Experimental results on a simulated environment show that active gaze control, based on the internal simulation of actions, provides a relevant advantage with respect to other action perception approaches, both in terms of estimation precision and of time required to recognize an action. Moreover, our model reproduces and extends some experimental results on human attention during an action perception.

  15. 20 CFR 667.710 - What actions are required to address the failure of a local area to comply with the applicable...

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-04-01

    ... Liability § 667.710 What actions are required to address the failure of a local area to comply with the... 20 Employees' Benefits 3 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false What actions are required to address the failure of a local area to comply with the applicable uniform administrative provisions? 667.710...

  16. Engaging Pupils in Decision-Making about Biodiversity Conservation Issues

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Grace, Marcus; Byrne, Jenny

    2010-01-01

    Our pupils' generation will eventually have the daunting responsibility of making decisions about local and global biodiversity. School provides an early opportunity for them to enter into formal discussion about the science and values associated with biodiversity conservation; but the crowded curriculum offers little time for such activities.…

  17. Linking biodiversity, diet and health in policy and practice.

    PubMed

    Johns, Timothy; Eyzaguirre, Pablo B

    2006-05-01

    Simplification of human diets associated with increased accessibility of inexpensive agricultural commodities and erosion of agrobiodiversity leads to nutrient deficiencies and excess energy consumption. Non-communicable diseases are growing causes of death and disability worldwide. Successful food systems in transition effectively draw on locally-available foods, food variety and traditional food cultures. In practice this process involves empirical research, public policy, promotion and applied action in support of multi-sectoral, community-based strategies linking rural producers and urban consumers, subsistence and market economies, and traditional and modern food systems. Implementation of the International Plant Genetic Resources Institute's Global Nutrition Strategy in Sub-Saharan Africa offers a useful case study. Relevant policy platforms, in which biodiversity conservation and nutrition are and should be linked, include the Millennium Development Goals, Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, Convention on Biological Diversity, Global Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity and Health, Food-Based Dietary Guidelines, Right to Adequate Food and UN Human Rights Commission's Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. The largely unexplored health benefits of cultivated and wild plants include micronutrient intake and functions related to energy density, glycaemic control, oxidative stress and immuno-stimulation. Research on the properties of neglected and underutilized species and local varieties deserves higher priority. In tests of the hypothesis that biodiversity is essential for dietary diversity and health, quantitative indicators of dietary and biological diversity can be combined with nutrition and health outcomes at the population level. That traditional systems once lost are hard to recreate underlines the imperative for timely documentation, compilation and dissemination of eroding knowledge of biodiversity and the use of food culture for promoting positive

  18. Utility terrestrial biodiversity issues

    SciTech Connect

    Breece, G.A.; Ward, B.J.

    1996-11-01

    Results from a survey of power utility biologists indicate that terrestrial biodiversity is considered a major issued by only a few utilities; however, a majority believe it may be a future issue. Over half of the respondents indicated that their company is involved in some management for biodiversity, and nearly all feel that it should be a goal for resource management. Only a few utilities are funding biodiversity research, but a majority felt more research was needed. Generally, larger utilities with extensive land holdings had greater opportunities and resources for biodiversity management. Biodiversity will most likely be a concern with transmission rights-of-way construction and maintenance, endangered species issues and general land resource management, including mining reclamation and hydro relicensing commitments. Over half of the companies surveyed have established voluntary partnerships with management groups, and biodiversity is a goal in nearly all the joint projects. Endangered species management and protection, prevention of forest fragmentation, wetland protection, and habitat creation and protection are the most common partnerships involving utility companies. Common management practices and unique approaches are presented, along with details of the survey. 4 refs.

  19. Geography of conservation spending, biodiversity, and culture.

    PubMed

    McClanahan, T R; Rankin, P S

    2016-10-01

    We used linear and multivariate models to examine the associations between geography, biodiversity, per capita economic output, national spending on conservation, governance, and cultural traits in 55 countries. Cultural traits and social metrics of modernization correlated positively with national spending on conservation. The global distribution of this spending culture was poorly aligned with the distribution of biodiversity. Specifically, biodiversity was greater in the tropics where cultures tended to spend relatively less on conservation and tended to have higher collectivism, formalized and hierarchical leadership, and weaker governance. Consequently, nations lacking social traits frequently associated with modernization, environmentalism, and conservation spending have the largest component of Earth's biodiversity. This has significant implications for setting policies and priorities for resource management given that biological diversity is rapidly disappearing and cultural traits change slowly. Therefore, we suggest natural resource management adapt to and use characteristics of existing social organization rather than wait for or promote social values associated with conservation spending. Supporting biocultural traditions, engaging leaders to increase conservation commitments, cross-national efforts that complement attributes of cultures, and avoiding interference with nature may work best to conserve nature in collective and hierarchical societies. Spending in modernized nations may be a symbolic response to a symptom of economic development and environmental degradation, and here conservation actions need to ensure that biodiversity is not being lost.

  20. Cheap carbon and biodiversity co-benefits from forest regeneration in a hotspot of endemism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gilroy, James J.; Woodcock, Paul; Edwards, Felicity A.; Wheeler, Charlotte; Baptiste, Brigitte L. G.; Medina Uribe, Claudia A.; Haugaasen, Torbjørn; Edwards, David P.

    2014-06-01

    Climate change and biodiversity loss can be addressed simultaneously by well-planned conservation policies, but this requires information on the alignment of co-benefits under different management actions. One option is to allow forests to naturally regenerate on marginal agricultural land: a key question is whether this approach will deliver environmental co-benefits in an economically viable manner. Here we report on a survey of carbon stocks, biodiversity and economic values from one of the world's most endemic-rich and threatened ecosystems: the western Andes of Colombia. We show that naturally regenerating secondary forests accumulate significant carbon stocks within 30 years, and support biodiverse communities including many species at risk of extinction. Cattle farming, the principal land use in the region, provides minimal economic returns to local communities, making forest regeneration a viable option despite weak global carbon markets. Efforts to promote natural forest regeneration in the tropical Andes could therefore provide globally significant carbon and biodiversity co-benefits at minimal cost.

  1. Urban Biodiversity, City-Dwellers and Conservation: How Does an Outdoor Activity Day Affect the Human-Nature Relationship?

    PubMed Central

    Jaillon, Alexandre; Piron, Armony; Julliard, Romain; Raymond, Richard; Simon, Laurent; Prévot-Julliard, Anne-Caroline

    2012-01-01

    Urban conservation education programs aim to increase knowledge and awareness towards biodiversity and to change attitudes and behaviour towards the environment. However, to date, few urban conservation education studies have evaluated to what extent these programs have managed to achieve their goals. In this study, we experimentally explored the influence of an urban conservation activity day on individual knowledge, awareness and actions towards biodiversity, in both the short and longer term. We organised three activity days in Paris (France), during which people were invited to participate in urban conservation efforts. Both quantitative (questionnaire) and qualitative (interviews) methods were employed to investigate the influence of this short urban nature experience on the relationships that city-dwellers develop with nearby biodiversity. We found a strong positive correlation between the levels of participation and an immediate interest towards local urban biodiversity. In the longer term, however, although participants claimed to have gained more knowledge, local awareness and interest for species in their daily environment, they did not seem to extend this interest to participating in other related activities. These results highlight the complexity of validating the effectiveness of this type of education program for achieving conservation goals. Although such a short activity may only have a limited environmental impact, it nevertheless seems to increase people's knowledge, awareness, interest and concern. We therefore believe that when repeated locally, these short conservation education programs could enhance people's experience with nature in cities and achieve conservation goals more fully. PMID:22715403

  2. Urban biodiversity, city-dwellers and conservation: how does an outdoor activity day affect the human-nature relationship?

    PubMed

    Shwartz, Assaf; Cosquer, Alix; Jaillon, Alexandre; Piron, Armony; Julliard, Romain; Raymond, Richard; Simon, Laurent; Prévot-Julliard, Anne-Caroline

    2012-01-01

    Urban conservation education programs aim to increase knowledge and awareness towards biodiversity and to change attitudes and behaviour towards the environment. However, to date, few urban conservation education studies have evaluated to what extent these programs have managed to achieve their goals. In this study, we experimentally explored the influence of an urban conservation activity day on individual knowledge, awareness and actions towards biodiversity, in both the short and longer term.We organised three activity days in Paris (France), during which people were invited to participate in urban conservation efforts. Both quantitative (questionnaire) and qualitative (interviews) methods were employed to investigate the influence of this short urban nature experience on the relationships that city-dwellers develop with nearby biodiversity. We found a strong positive correlation between the levels of participation and an immediate interest towards local urban biodiversity. In the longer term, however, although participants claimed to have gained more knowledge, local awareness and interest for species in their daily environment, they did not seem to extend this interest to participating in other related activities. These results highlight the complexity of validating the effectiveness of this type of education program for achieving conservation goals. Although such a short activity may only have a limited environmental impact, it nevertheless seems to increase people's knowledge, awareness, interest and concern. We therefore believe that when repeated locally, these short conservation education programs could enhance people's experience with nature in cities and achieve conservation goals more fully.

  3. Development of Action Monitoring through Adolescence into Adulthood: ERP and Source Localization

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ladouceur, Cecile D.; Dahl, Ronald E.; Carter, Cameron S.

    2007-01-01

    In this study we examined the development of three action monitoring event-related potentials (ERPs)--the error-related negativity (ERN/Ne), error positivity (P[subscript E]) and the N2--and estimated their neural sources. These ERPs were recorded during a flanker task in the following groups: early adolescents (mean age = 12 years), late…

  4. Banning Trophy Hunting Will Exacerbate Biodiversity Loss.

    PubMed

    Di Minin, Enrico; Leader-Williams, Nigel; Bradshaw, Corey J A

    2016-02-01

    International pressure to ban trophy hunting is increasing. However, we argue that trophy hunting can be an important conservation tool, provided it can be done in a controlled manner to benefit biodiversity conservation and local people. Where political and governance structures are adequate, trophy hunting can help address the ongoing loss of species.

  5. Promoting Engagement: Using Species Action Plans to Bring Together Students and Conservation Professionals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scott, Graham W.; Turnbull, Shona; Spencer, James

    2008-01-01

    We describe an exercise, the production of a species action plan, which utilises components of both transmission mode and experiential learning. This exercise brings together students and a professional role model to promote a stronger engagement with aspects of local biodiversity management. We outline perceived benefits and outcomes of the…

  6. Local Climate Action Framework: A Step-by-Step Implementation Guide

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    This guide provides step-by-step guidance and resources for local governments to plan, implement, and evaluate climate, energy, and sustainability projects/programs to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to climate change impacts.

  7. The changing form of Antarctic biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Chown, Steven L; Clarke, Andrew; Fraser, Ceridwen I; Cary, S Craig; Moon, Katherine L; McGeoch, Melodie A

    2015-06-25

    Antarctic biodiversity is much more extensive, ecologically diverse and biogeographically structured than previously thought. Understanding of how this diversity is distributed in marine and terrestrial systems, the mechanisms underlying its spatial variation, and the significance of the microbiota is growing rapidly. Broadly recognizable drivers of diversity variation include energy availability and historical refugia. The impacts of local human activities and global environmental change nonetheless pose challenges to the current and future understanding of Antarctic biodiversity. Life in the Antarctic and the Southern Ocean is surprisingly rich, and as much at risk from environmental change as it is elsewhere.

  8. Toward a system to measure action potential on mice brain slices with local magnetoresistive probes

    SciTech Connect

    Amaral, J.; Cardoso, S.; Freitas, P. P.; Sebastiao, A. M.

    2011-04-01

    This work combines an electrophysiological system with a magnetoresistive chip to measure the magnetic field created by the synaptic/action potential currents. The chip, with 15 spin valve sensors, was designed to be integrated in a recording chamber for submerged mice brain slices used for synaptic potential measurements. Under stimulation (rectangular pulses of 0.1 ms every 10 s) through a concentric electrode placed near the CA3/CA1 border of the hippocampus, the spin valve sensor readout signals with 20 {mu}V amplitude and a pulse length of 20 to 30 ms were recorded only in the pyramidal cell bodies region and can be interpreted as being derived from action potentials/currents.

  9. Toward a system to measure action potential on mice brain slices with local magnetoresistive probes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amaral, J.; Cardoso, S.; Freitas, P. P.; Sebastião, A. M.

    2011-04-01

    This work combines an electrophysiological system with a magnetoresistive chip to measure the magnetic field created by the synaptic/action potential currents. The chip, with 15 spin valve sensors, was designed to be integrated in a recording chamber for submerged mice brain slices used for synaptic potential measurements. Under stimulation (rectangular pulses of 0.1 ms every 10 s) through a concentric electrode placed near the CA3/CA1 border of the hippocampus, the spin valve sensor readout signals with 20 μV amplitude and a pulse length of 20 to 30 ms were recorded only in the pyramidal cell bodies region and can be interpreted as being derived from action potentials/currents.

  10. Biodiversity information platforms: From standards to interoperability

    PubMed Central

    Berendsohn, W. G.; Güntsch, A.; Hoffmann, N.; Kohlbecker, A.; Luther, K.; Müller, A.

    2011-01-01

    Abstract One of the most serious bottlenecks in the scientific workflows of biodiversity sciences is the need to integrate data from different sources, software applications, and services for analysis, visualisation and publication. For more than a quarter of a century the TDWG Biodiversity Information Standards organisation has a central role in defining and promoting data standards and protocols supporting interoperability between disparate and locally distributed systems.Although often not sufficiently recognized, TDWG standards are the foundation of many popular Biodiversity Informatics applications and infrastructures ranging from small desktop software solutions to large scale international data networks. However, individual scientists and groups of collaborating scientist have difficulties in fully exploiting the potential of standards that are often notoriously complex, lack non-technical documentations, and use different representations and underlying technologies. In the last few years, a series of initiatives such as Scratchpads, the EDIT Platform for Cybertaxonomy, and biowikifarm have started to implement and set up virtual work platforms for biodiversity sciences which shield their users from the complexity of the underlying standards. Apart from being practical work-horses for numerous working processes related to biodiversity sciences, they can be seen as information brokers mediating information between multiple data standards and protocols.The ViBRANT project will further strengthen the flexibility and power of virtual biodiversity working platforms by building software interfaces between them, thus facilitating essential information flows needed for comprehensive data exchange, data indexing, web-publication, and versioning. This work will make an important contribution to the shaping of an international, interoperable, and user-oriented biodiversity information infrastructure. PMID:22207807

  11. Revolutionary Learning, Biodiversity, and Transformative Action. Essay Review of "Learning in Social Action: A Contribution To Understanding Informal Education" by Griff Foley; "Transformative Learning: Educational Vision for the Twenty-First Century" by Edmund O'Sullivan; and "Che Guevara, Paulo Freire and the Pedagogy of Revolution" by Peter McLaren.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mayo, Peter

    2001-01-01

    Three books, published 1999-2000, map out a vision of education as a vehicle for human emancipation and global transformation. Their approaches to presenting the "big picture" differ, focusing on case studies of learning through local social action; the impact of Che Guevara and Paulo Freire on liberation discourse worldwide; and comprehensive…

  12. Marine biodiversity and fishery sustainability.

    PubMed

    Shao, Kwang-Tsao

    2009-01-01

    Marine fish is one of the most important sources of animal protein for human use, especially in developing countries with coastlines. Marine fishery is also an important industry in many countries. Fifty years ago, many people believed that the ocean was so vast and so resilient that there was no way the marine environment could be changed, nor could marine fishery resources be depleted. Half a century later, we all agree that the depletion of fishery resources is happening mainly due to anthropogenic factors such as overfishing, habitat destruction, pollution, invasive species introduction, and climate change. Since overfishing can cause chain reactions that decrease marine biodiversity drastically, there will be no seafood left after 40 years if we take no action. The most effective ways to reverse this downward trend and restore fishery resources are to promote fishery conservation, establish marine-protected areas, adopt ecosystem-based management, and implement a "precautionary principle." Additionally, enhancing public awareness of marine conservation, which includes eco-labeling, fishery ban or enclosure, slow fishing, and MPA (marine protected areas) enforcement is important and effective. In this paper, we use Taiwan as an example to discuss the problems facing marine biodiversity and sustainable fisheries.

  13. Data for action: collection and use of local data to end tuberculosis.

    PubMed

    Theron, Grant; Jenkins, Helen E; Cobelens, Frank; Abubakar, Ibrahim; Khan, Aamir J; Cohen, Ted; Dowdy, David W

    2015-12-05

    Accelerating progress in the fight against tuberculosis will require a drastic shift from a strategy focused on control to one focused on elimination. Successful disease elimination campaigns are characterised by locally tailored responses that are informed by appropriate data. To develop such a response to tuberculosis, we suggest a three-step process that includes improved collection and use of existing programmatic data, collection of additional data (eg, geographic information, drug resistance, and risk factors) to inform tailored responses, and targeted collection of novel data (eg, sequencing data, targeted surveys, and contact investigations) to improve understanding of tuberculosis transmission dynamics. Development of a locally targeted response for tuberculosis will require substantial investment to reconfigure existing systems, coupled with additional empirical data to evaluate the effectiveness of specific approaches. Without adoption of an elimination strategy that uses local data to target hotspots of transmission, ambitious targets to end tuberculosis will almost certainly remain unmet.

  14. [Supporting local communities in their actions for children living in a situation of poverty].

    PubMed

    Brunet, Lyse

    2014-03-01

    Avenir d’Enfants [Future of Children] emerged from a partnership between the government of Quebec and the Lucie and André Chagnon Foundation. The organization aims to provide local communities with resources, in order to support synergy between the principal early childhood organizations: childcare services, healthcare services, schools, family community organizations and municipalities. This article presents the context in which Avenir d’Enfants came into being, explains how the organization helps create the right conditions for local and regional initiatives to have an impact on the development of children living in a situation of poverty, and presents the challenges and success factors of this approach.

  15. Loss of Local Astrocyte Support Disrupts Action Potential Propagation and Glutamate Release Synchrony from Unmyelinated Hippocampal Axon Terminals In Vitro

    PubMed Central

    Sobieski, Courtney; Jiang, Xiaoping; Crawford, Devon C.

    2015-01-01

    Neuron–astrocyte interactions are critical for proper CNS development and function. Astrocytes secrete factors that are pivotal for synaptic development and function, neuronal metabolism, and neuronal survival. Our understanding of this relationship, however, remains incomplete due to technical hurdles that have prevented the removal of astrocytes from neuronal circuits without changing other important conditions. Here we overcame this obstacle by growing solitary rat hippocampal neurons on microcultures that were comprised of either an astrocyte bed (+astrocyte) or a collagen bed (−astrocyte) within the same culture dish. −Astrocyte autaptic evoked EPSCs, but not IPSCs, displayed an altered temporal profile, which included increased synaptic delay, increased time to peak, and severe glutamate release asynchrony, distinct from previously described quantal asynchrony. Although we observed minimal alteration of the somatically recorded action potential waveform, action potential propagation was altered. We observed a longer latency between somatic initiation and arrival at distal locations, which likely explains asynchronous EPSC peaks, and we observed broadening of the axonal spike, which likely underlies changes to evoked EPSC onset. No apparent changes in axon structure were observed, suggesting altered axonal excitability. In conclusion, we propose that local astrocyte support has an unappreciated role in maintaining glutamate release synchrony by disturbing axonal signal propagation. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Certain glial cell types (oligodendrocytes, Schwann cells) facilitate the propagation of neuronal electrical signals, but a role for astrocytes has not been identified despite many other functions of astrocytes in supporting and modulating neuronal signaling. Under identical global conditions, we cultured neurons with or without local astrocyte support. Without local astrocytes, glutamate transmission was desynchronized by an alteration of the waveform

  16. 7 CFR 247.35 - Local agency appeals of State agency actions.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... Section 247.35 Agriculture Regulations of the Department of Agriculture (Continued) FOOD AND NUTRITION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE CHILD NUTRITION PROGRAMS COMMODITY SUPPLEMENTAL FOOD PROGRAM § 247.35... participation in CSFP—e.g., the termination of a local agency's participation in the program. The adverse...

  17. Energy Conservation: Guidelines for Action. Suggested Guidelines for Local School District Development of Energy Conservation Programs.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Michigan Association of School Administrators, East Lansing.

    Curriculum guidelines for the local development of energy conservation programs in public schools reflect an interdisciplinary educational approach--the result of a coordinated effort by industry, commerce, education, and government agencies concerned with the energy crisis. The scope and nature of the problem, with its implications for education…

  18. Developing Evidence for Action on the Postgraduate Experience: An Effective Local Instrument to Move beyond Benchmarking

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sampson, K. A.; Johnston, L.; Comer, K.; Brogt, E.

    2016-01-01

    Summative and benchmarking surveys to measure the postgraduate student research experience are well reported in the literature. While useful, we argue that local instruments that provide formative resources with an academic development focus are also required. If higher education institutions are to move beyond the identification of issues and…

  19. An Ecological Analysis of the Dynamics of Localities: A 14+ Low Opportunity Progression Equilibrium in Action

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hodgson, Ann; Spours, Ken

    2015-01-01

    This article uses a multi-level ecological model to explore the dynamics of localities in England and their effects on the 14+ participation, progression and transition (14+ PPT) of young people at a time when nationally and internationally there is a recognition that transitions from education to employment are both more complex and take longer.…

  20. Climate impacts on global hot spots of marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Ramírez, Francisco; Afán, Isabel; Davis, Lloyd S; Chiaradia, André

    2017-02-01

    Human activities drive environmental changes at scales that could potentially cause ecosystem collapses in the marine environment. We combined information on marine biodiversity with spatial assessments of the impacts of climate change to identify the key areas to prioritize for the conservation of global marine biodiversity. This process identified six marine regions of exceptional biodiversity based on global distributions of 1729 species of fish, 124 marine mammals, and 330 seabirds. Overall, these hot spots of marine biodiversity coincide with areas most severely affected by global warming. In particular, these marine biodiversity hot spots have undergone local to regional increasing water temperatures, slowing current circulation, and decreasing primary productivity. Furthermore, when we overlapped these hot spots with available industrial fishery data, albeit coarser than our estimates of climate impacts, they suggest a worrying coincidence whereby the world's richest areas for marine biodiversity are also those areas mostly affected by both climate change and industrial fishing. In light of these findings, we offer an adaptable framework for determining local to regional areas of special concern for the conservation of marine biodiversity. This has exposed the need for finer-scaled fishery data to assist in the management of global fisheries if the accumulative, but potentially preventable, effect of fishing on climate change impacts is to be minimized within areas prioritized for marine biodiversity conservation.

  1. Climate impacts on global hot spots of marine biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Ramírez, Francisco; Afán, Isabel; Davis, Lloyd S.; Chiaradia, André

    2017-01-01

    Human activities drive environmental changes at scales that could potentially cause ecosystem collapses in the marine environment. We combined information on marine biodiversity with spatial assessments of the impacts of climate change to identify the key areas to prioritize for the conservation of global marine biodiversity. This process identified six marine regions of exceptional biodiversity based on global distributions of 1729 species of fish, 124 marine mammals, and 330 seabirds. Overall, these hot spots of marine biodiversity coincide with areas most severely affected by global warming. In particular, these marine biodiversity hot spots have undergone local to regional increasing water temperatures, slowing current circulation, and decreasing primary productivity. Furthermore, when we overlapped these hot spots with available industrial fishery data, albeit coarser than our estimates of climate impacts, they suggest a worrying coincidence whereby the world’s richest areas for marine biodiversity are also those areas mostly affected by both climate change and industrial fishing. In light of these findings, we offer an adaptable framework for determining local to regional areas of special concern for the conservation of marine biodiversity. This has exposed the need for finer-scaled fishery data to assist in the management of global fisheries if the accumulative, but potentially preventable, effect of fishing on climate change impacts is to be minimized within areas prioritized for marine biodiversity conservation. PMID:28261659

  2. Neotropical biodiversity: timing and potential drivers.

    PubMed

    Rull, Valentí

    2011-10-01

    The origin of extant neotropical biodiversity has been a controversial topic since the time of Darwin. In this review, I discuss the timing of, and potential driving factors associated with, diversification using recent evidence from molecular phylogenetics. Although these studies provide new insights into the subject, they are sensitive to dating approaches and targets, and can eventually lead to biased conclusions. A careful analysis suggests that the origin of extant neotropical biodiversity cannot be attributed to the action of one or few events during key time intervals. Rather, it is the result of complex ecological and evolutionary trends initiated by Neogene tectonic events and palaeogeographical reorganisations, and maintained by the action of Pleistocene climatic changes.

  3. Biodiversity in cities needs space: a meta-analysis of factors determining intra-urban biodiversity variation.

    PubMed

    Beninde, Joscha; Veith, Michael; Hochkirch, Axel

    2015-06-01

    Understanding varying levels of biodiversity within cities is pivotal to protect it in the face of global urbanisation. In the early stages of urban ecology studies on intra-urban biodiversity focused on the urban-rural gradient, representing a broad generalisation of features of the urban landscape. Increasingly, studies classify the urban landscape in more detail, quantifying separately the effects of individual urban features on biodiversity levels. However, while separate factors influencing biodiversity variation among cities worldwide have recently been analysed, a global analysis on the factors influencing biodiversity levels within cities is still lacking. We here present the first meta-analysis on intra-urban biodiversity variation across a large variety of taxonomic groups of 75 cities worldwide. Our results show that patch area and corridors have the strongest positive effects on biodiversity, complemented by vegetation structure. Local, biotic and management habitat variables were significantly more important than landscape, abiotic or design variables. Large sites greater than 50 ha are necessary to prevent a rapid loss of area-sensitive species. This indicates that, despite positive impacts of biodiversity-friendly management, increasing the area of habitat patches and creating a network of corridors is the most important strategy to maintain high levels of urban biodiversity.

  4. Origins of Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Benton, Michael J.

    2016-01-01

    Biodiversity today is huge, and it has a long history. Identifying rules for the heterogeneity of modern biodiversity—the high to low species richness of different clades—has been hard. There are measurable biodiversity differences between land and sea and between the tropics and temperate-polar regions. Some analyses suggest that the net age of a clade can determine its extinction risk, but this is equivocal. New work shows that, through geological time, clades pass through different diversification regimes, and those regimes constrain the balance of tree size and the nature of branching events. PMID:27806048

  5. Local L-NG-monomethyl-arginine attenuates the vasodilator action of bradykinin in the human forearm.

    PubMed Central

    O'Kane, K P; Webb, D J; Collier, J G; Vallance, P J

    1994-01-01

    1. Studies in animals indicate that bradykinin relaxes blood vessels directly through an action on smooth muscle and indirectly through the release of endothelium-derived mediators. Its precise mechanism of action in the human arterial circulation is not yet known. 2. In this study the effects of a specific inhibitor of nitric oxide synthase, L-NG-monomethyl-arginine (L-NMMA) and noradrenaline on the vasodilator responses to bradykinin were examined in the forearm arterial bed of healthy volunteers. Noradrenaline was used as a control for vasoconstriction by L-NMMA; glyceryl trinitrate (GTN) as a control vasodilator acting independently of the NO synthase enzyme. 3. L-NMMA (4 mumol min-1; 5 min) alone reduced resting forearm blood flow by 44% (P < 0.01; n = 6) confirming that nitric oxide plays an important role in regulating vascular tone. 4. Bradykinin (10 and 100 pmol min-1; 3 min each dose) and GTN (2 and 5 nmol min-1; 3 min each dose) increased forearm blood flow in a dose-dependent manner (percentage changes 171 +/- 17% and 398 +/- 35%, and 176 +/- 21% and 268 +/- 42%, respectively; n = 6). 5. The response to bradykinin, but not that to GTN, was attenuated by L-NMMA compared with noradrenaline (P < 0.05; n = 6), suggesting that bradykinin-induced vasodilatation in the forearm is mediated, at least in part, by stimulating release of nitric oxide. PMID:7833219

  6. Knowledge into action? understanding ideological barriers to addressing health inequalities at the local level.

    PubMed

    Collins, Patricia A; Abelson, Julia; Eyles, John D

    2007-01-01

    The objective of this study was to explore the presence of ideological barriers to addressing local health inequalities in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. A survey of active citizens revealed low levels of awareness of the social determinants of health (SDOH) framework, and some incongruence between understanding and attitudes towards the SDOH. Support for addressing health inequalities was associated with awareness of the SDOH framework, liberal value-systems, and a cluster of socio-demographic characteristics. Liberal leaning participants were also more politically active than their conservative counterparts. Ideological barriers included lack of SDOH awareness, narrow understandings of the relative influences of the SDOH, resistance to de-prioritizing healthcare, and conservative values. Advancement of a SDOH policy agenda should incorporate wider dissemination efforts to citizens and local service providers to increase support for this framework, and utilization of existing support and political engagement from liberal-leaning demographics.

  7. Bradykinin as a pain mediator: receptors are localized to sensory neurons, and antagonists have analgesic actions

    SciTech Connect

    Steranka, L.R.; Manning, D.C.; DeHaas, C.J.; Ferkany, J.W.; Borosky, S.A.; Connor, J.R.; Vavrek, R.J.; Stewart, J.M.; Snyder, S.H.

    1988-05-01

    Autoradiographic studies localize (/sup 3/H)bradykinin receptor binding sites to the substantia gelatinosa, dorsal root, and a subset of small cells in both the dorsal root and trigeminal ganglia of the guinea pig. (/sup 3/H)Bradykinin labeling is also observed over myocardinal/coronary visceral afferent fibers. The localization of (/sup 3/H)bradykinin receptors to nociceptive pathways supports a role for bradykinin in pain mediation. Several bradkykinin antagonists block bradykinin-induced acute vascular pain in the rat. The bradykinin antagonists also relieve bradykinin- and urate-induced hyperalgesia in the rat paw. These results indicate that bradykinin is a physiologic mediator of pain and that bradykinin antagonists have analgesic activity in both acute and chronic pain models.

  8. Snapshots of the Brain in Action: Local Circuit Operations through the Lens of γ Oscillations

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    γ oscillations (20–80 Hz) are associated with sensory processing, cognition, and memory, and focused attention in animals and humans. γ activity can arise from several neural mechanisms in the cortex and hippocampus and can vary across circuits, behavioral states, and developmental stages. γ oscillations are nonstationary, typically occurring in short bouts, and the peak frequency of this rhythm is modulated by stimulus parameters. In addition, the participation of excitatory and inhibitory neurons in the γ rhythm varies across local circuits and conditions, particularly in the cortex. Although these dynamics present a challenge to interpreting the functional role of γ oscillations, these patterns of activity emerge from synaptic interactions among excitatory and inhibitory neurons and thus provide important insight into local circuit operations. PMID:27733601

  9. Sustaining ecosystem services: Overcoming the dilemma posed by local actions and planetary boundaries

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jonas, Matthias; Ometto, Jean Pierre; Batistella, Mateus; Franklin, Oskar; Hall, Marianne; Lapola, David M.; Moran, Emilio F.; Tramberend, Sylvia; Queiroz, Bernardo Lanza; Schaffartzik, Anke; Shvidenko, Anatoly; Nilsson, Sten B.; Nobre, Carlos A.

    2014-08-01

    Resolving challenges related to the sustainability of natural capital and ecosystem services is an urgent issue. No roadmap on reaching sustainability exists; and the kind of sustainable land use required in a world that acknowledges both multiple environmental boundaries and local human well-being presents a quandary. In this commentary, we argue that a new globally consistent and expandable systems-analytical framework is needed to guide and facilitate decision making on sustainability from the planetary to the local level, and vice versa. This framework would strive to link a multitude of Earth system processes and targets; it would give preference to systemic insight over data complexity through being highly explicit in spatiotemporal terms. Its strength would lie in its ability to help scientists uncover and explore potential, and even unexpected, interactions between Earth's subsystems with planetary environmental boundaries and socioeconomic constraints coming into play. Equally importantly, such a framework would allow countries such as Brazil, a case study in this commentary, to understand domestic or even local sustainability measures within a global perspective and to optimize them accordingly.

  10. A Biodiversity Indicators Dashboard: Addressing Challenges to Monitoring Progress towards the Aichi Biodiversity Targets Using Disaggregated Global Data

    PubMed Central

    Han, Xuemei; Smyth, Regan L.; Young, Bruce E.; Brooks, Thomas M.; Sánchez de Lozada, Alexandra; Bubb, Philip; Butchart, Stuart H. M.; Larsen, Frank W.; Hamilton, Healy; Hansen, Matthew C.; Turner, Will R.

    2014-01-01

    Recognizing the imperiled status of biodiversity and its benefit to human well-being, the world's governments committed in 2010 to take effective and urgent action to halt biodiversity loss through the Convention on Biological Diversity's “Aichi Targets”. These targets, and many conservation programs, require monitoring to assess progress toward specific goals. However, comprehensive and easily understood information on biodiversity trends at appropriate spatial scales is often not available to the policy makers, managers, and scientists who require it. We surveyed conservation stakeholders in three geographically diverse regions of critical biodiversity concern (the Tropical Andes, the African Great Lakes, and the Greater Mekong) and found high demand for biodiversity indicator information but uneven availability. To begin to address this need, we present a biodiversity “dashboard” – a visualization of biodiversity indicators designed to enable tracking of biodiversity and conservation performance data in a clear, user-friendly format. This builds on previous, more conceptual, indicator work to create an operationalized online interface communicating multiple indicators at multiple spatial scales. We structured this dashboard around the Pressure-State-Response-Benefit framework, selecting four indicators to measure pressure on biodiversity (deforestation rate), state of species (Red List Index), conservation response (protection of key biodiversity areas), and benefits to human populations (freshwater provision). Disaggregating global data, we present dashboard maps and graphics for the three regions surveyed and their component countries. These visualizations provide charts showing regional and national trends and lay the foundation for a web-enabled, interactive biodiversity indicators dashboard. This new tool can help track progress toward the Aichi Targets, support national monitoring and reporting, and inform outcome-based policy-making for the

  11. A biodiversity indicators dashboard: addressing challenges to monitoring progress towards the Aichi biodiversity targets using disaggregated global data.

    PubMed

    Han, Xuemei; Smyth, Regan L; Young, Bruce E; Brooks, Thomas M; Sánchez de Lozada, Alexandra; Bubb, Philip; Butchart, Stuart H M; Larsen, Frank W; Hamilton, Healy; Hansen, Matthew C; Turner, Will R

    2014-01-01

    Recognizing the imperiled status of biodiversity and its benefit to human well-being, the world's governments committed in 2010 to take effective and urgent action to halt biodiversity loss through the Convention on Biological Diversity's "Aichi Targets". These targets, and many conservation programs, require monitoring to assess progress toward specific goals. However, comprehensive and easily understood information on biodiversity trends at appropriate spatial scales is often not available to the policy makers, managers, and scientists who require it. We surveyed conservation stakeholders in three geographically diverse regions of critical biodiversity concern (the Tropical Andes, the African Great Lakes, and the Greater Mekong) and found high demand for biodiversity indicator information but uneven availability. To begin to address this need, we present a biodiversity "dashboard"--a visualization of biodiversity indicators designed to enable tracking of biodiversity and conservation performance data in a clear, user-friendly format. This builds on previous, more conceptual, indicator work to create an operationalized online interface communicating multiple indicators at multiple spatial scales. We structured this dashboard around the Pressure-State-Response-Benefit framework, selecting four indicators to measure pressure on biodiversity (deforestation rate), state of species (Red List Index), conservation response (protection of key biodiversity areas), and benefits to human populations (freshwater provision). Disaggregating global data, we present dashboard maps and graphics for the three regions surveyed and their component countries. These visualizations provide charts showing regional and national trends and lay the foundation for a web-enabled, interactive biodiversity indicators dashboard. This new tool can help track progress toward the Aichi Targets, support national monitoring and reporting, and inform outcome-based policy-making for the protection of

  12. Nouns, verbs, objects, actions, and abstractions: Local fMRI activity indexes semantics, not lexical categories

    PubMed Central

    Moseley, Rachel L.; Pulvermüller, Friedemann

    2014-01-01

    Noun/verb dissociations in the literature defy interpretation due to the confound between lexical category and semantic meaning; nouns and verbs typically describe concrete objects and actions. Abstract words, pertaining to neither, are a critical test case: dissociations along lexical-grammatical lines would support models purporting lexical category as the principle governing brain organisation, whilst semantic models predict dissociation between concrete words but not abstract items. During fMRI scanning, participants read orthogonalised word categories of nouns and verbs, with or without concrete, sensorimotor meaning. Analysis of inferior frontal/insula, precentral and central areas revealed an interaction between lexical class and semantic factors with clear category differences between concrete nouns and verbs but not abstract ones. Though the brain stores the combinatorial and lexical-grammatical properties of words, our data show that topographical differences in brain activation, especially in the motor system and inferior frontal cortex, are driven by semantics and not by lexical class. PMID:24727103

  13. Nouns, verbs, objects, actions, and abstractions: local fMRI activity indexes semantics, not lexical categories.

    PubMed

    Moseley, Rachel L; Pulvermüller, Friedemann

    2014-05-01

    Noun/verb dissociations in the literature defy interpretation due to the confound between lexical category and semantic meaning; nouns and verbs typically describe concrete objects and actions. Abstract words, pertaining to neither, are a critical test case: dissociations along lexical-grammatical lines would support models purporting lexical category as the principle governing brain organisation, whilst semantic models predict dissociation between concrete words but not abstract items. During fMRI scanning, participants read orthogonalised word categories of nouns and verbs, with or without concrete, sensorimotor meaning. Analysis of inferior frontal/insula, precentral and central areas revealed an interaction between lexical class and semantic factors with clear category differences between concrete nouns and verbs but not abstract ones. Though the brain stores the combinatorial and lexical-grammatical properties of words, our data show that topographical differences in brain activation, especially in the motor system and inferior frontal cortex, are driven by semantics and not by lexical class.

  14. Biodiversity governance: a Tower of Babel of scales and cultures.

    PubMed

    Soberón, Jorge; Peterson, A Townsend

    2015-03-01

    The recently created Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), originally focused on multilateral and global issues, is shifting its focus to address local issues and to include in its assessments local stakeholders and indigenous and traditional systems of knowledge. Acknowledging that full biodiversity governance is unavoidably rooted in participation of local actors and their problems and knowledge, we suggest that to deal successfully with the complexity and diversity of local issues, including indigenous knowledge systems, IPBES must recognize a key role of local institutions.

  15. Biodiversity Governance: A Tower of Babel of Scales and Cultures

    PubMed Central

    Soberón, Jorge; Peterson, A. Townsend

    2015-01-01

    The recently created Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), originally focused on multilateral and global issues, is shifting its focus to address local issues and to include in its assessments local stakeholders and indigenous and traditional systems of knowledge. Acknowledging that full biodiversity governance is unavoidably rooted in participation of local actors and their problems and knowledge, we suggest that to deal successfully with the complexity and diversity of local issues, including indigenous knowledge systems, IPBES must recognize a key role of local institutions. PMID:25764504

  16. Growth hormone (GH) and GH-releasing hormone (GHRH): Co-localization and action in the chicken testis.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Moreno, Carlos G; López-Marín, Luz M; Carranza, Martha; Giterman, Daniel; Harvey, Steve; Arámburo, Carlos; Luna, Maricela

    2014-04-01

    Growth hormone (GH) gene expression is not confined to the pituitary gland and occurs in many extrapituitary tissues, including the chicken testis. The regulation and function of GH in extrapituitary tissues is, however, largely unknown. The possibility that chicken testicular GH might be regulated by GH-releasing hormone (GHRH), as in the avian pituitary gland, was investigated in the present study. GHRH co-localized with GH in the germinal epithelium and in interstitial zones within the chicken testes, particularly in the spermatogonia and spermatocytes. In testicular cell cultures, exogenous human GHRH1-44 induced (at 1, 10 and 100nM) a dose-related increase in GH release. Western blot analysis showed a heterogeneous pattern in the GH moieties released during GHRH stimulation. 26kDa monomer GH was the most abundant moiety under basal conditions, but 15 and 17kDa isoforms were more abundant after GHRH stimulation. GHRH treatment also increased the abundance of PCNA (proliferating cell nuclear antigen) immunoreactivity in the testes. This may have been GH-mediated, since exogenous GH similarly increased the incorporation of ((3)H)-thymidine into cultured testicular cells and increased their metabolic activity, as determined by increased MTT reduction. Furthermore, GH and GHRH immunoneutralization blocked GHRH-stimulated proliferative activity. In summary, these results indicate that GHRH stimulates testicular GH secretion in an autocrine or paracrine manner. Data also demonstrate proliferative actions of GHRH on testicular cell number and suggest that this action is mediated by local GH production.

  17. Biodiversity conservation and NEPA

    SciTech Connect

    Southerland, M.T. )

    1993-01-01

    The Council of Environmental Quality (CEQ) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have recently developed new guidelines to facilitate the consideration of biodiversity in the preparation and review of environmental impact assessments. The purpose of these efforts is to facilitate the incorporation of biodiversity considerations into the ecological analyses of all federal agencies. Because federal decisions requiring environmental impact assessments under NEPA affect hundreds of millions of federal and non-federal lands and waters, improved consideration of the impacts of federal activities is essential to stemming the loss of biological diversity in the United States. The designation of ecosystems or habitats'' of concern is a useful first step identifying risks to biodiversity. After reviewing the status and trends of habitats within eight major regions of the US, the EPA guidelines identify habitats contributing to regional and global biodiversity such as remnant prairies, riparian habitats, and old-growth forests. This document also discusses how the impacts on habitats vary with the different activities of land conversion, timber harvesting, grazing, mining, and water management.

  18. Development of Bioadhesive Transdermal Bupivacaine Gels for Enhanced Local Anesthetic Action

    PubMed Central

    Cho, Cheong-Weon; Kim, Deok-Bae; Shin, Sang-Chul

    2012-01-01

    Topical drug dosage forms such as ointments and creams can be easily removed through wetting, movement and contact. The new bioadhesive formulations with enhanced local anesthetic effects are needed for topical administration. The adhesive capacity of hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC) was determined by measuring the maximum detachment force and the adhesion work with an auto peeling tester. The release of drug from a HPMC gel was studied according to the drug concentration. Permeation study through the rat skin was performed at 37°C using phosphate buffer solution (pH = 7.4) as a receptor medium. To increase the skin permeation of bupivacaine from the HPMC gels, penetration enhancer such as the saturated and unsaturated fatty acids, the pyrrolidones, the propylene glycol derivatives, the glycerides, and the non-ionic surfactants were incorporated in the bupivacaine-HPMC gels. The local anesthetic effect of the formulated gel preparation was examined using a tail-flick analgesimeter. As the concentration of HPMC increased, the bioadhesive force and viscosity were increased. The rate of drug release was increased with increasing the drug concentration. Among the enhancers used, polyoxyethylene 2-oleyl ether showed the most enhancing effects on drug permeation through the skin. In the rat tail flick test, the area under the efficacy curve of bupivacaine gel containing polyoxyethylene 2-oleyl ether and tetrahydrozoline showed a 2.36-fold increase in anesthetic activity compared to control gel without any additives. The bupivacaine gels containing both penetration enhancer and vasoconstrictor showed enhancement and prolonged efficacy compared to the control gel. To enhance the local anesthetic effects of bupivacaine, the transdermal bupivacaine gel formulation containing penetration enhancer and vasoconstrictor could be developed. PMID:24250466

  19. Combining high biodiversity with high yields in tropical agroforests.

    PubMed

    Clough, Yann; Barkmann, Jan; Juhrbandt, Jana; Kessler, Michael; Wanger, Thomas Cherico; Anshary, Alam; Buchori, Damayanti; Cicuzza, Daniele; Darras, Kevin; Putra, Dadang Dwi; Erasmi, Stefan; Pitopang, Ramadhanil; Schmidt, Carsten; Schulze, Christian H; Seidel, Dominik; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf; Stenchly, Kathrin; Vidal, Stefan; Weist, Maria; Wielgoss, Arno Christian; Tscharntke, Teja

    2011-05-17

    Local and landscape-scale agricultural intensification is a major driver of global biodiversity loss. Controversially discussed solutions include wildlife-friendly farming or combining high-intensity farming with land-sparing for nature. Here, we integrate biodiversity and crop productivity data for smallholder cacao in Indonesia to exemplify for tropical agroforests that there is little relationship between yield and biodiversity under current management, opening substantial opportunities for wildlife-friendly management. Species richness of trees, fungi, invertebrates, and vertebrates did not decrease with yield. Moderate shade, adequate labor, and input level can be combined with a complex habitat structure to provide high biodiversity as well as high yields. Although livelihood impacts are held up as a major obstacle for wildlife-friendly farming in the tropics, our results suggest that in some situations, agroforests can be designed to optimize both biodiversity and crop production benefits without adding pressure to convert natural habitat to farmland.

  20. Myostatin from the heart: local and systemic actions in cardiac failure and muscle wasting

    PubMed Central

    Breitbart, Astrid; Auger-Messier, Mannix; Molkentin, Jeffery D.

    2011-01-01

    A significant proportion of heart failure patients develop skeletal muscle wasting and cardiac cachexia, which is associated with a very poor prognosis. Recently, myostatin, a cytokine from the transforming growth factor-β (TGF-β) family and a known strong inhibitor of skeletal muscle growth, has been identified as a direct mediator of skeletal muscle atrophy in mice with heart failure. Myostatin is mainly expressed in skeletal muscle, although basal expression is also detectable in heart and adipose tissue. During pathological loading of the heart, the myocardium produces and secretes myostatin into the circulation where it inhibits skeletal muscle growth. Thus, genetic elimination of myostatin from the heart reduces skeletal muscle atrophy in mice with heart failure, whereas transgenic overexpression of myostatin in the heart is capable of inducing muscle wasting. In addition to its endocrine action on skeletal muscle, cardiac myostatin production also modestly inhibits cardiomyocyte growth under certain circumstances, as well as induces cardiac fibrosis and alterations in ventricular function. Interestingly, heart failure patients show elevated myostatin levels in their serum. To therapeutically influence skeletal muscle wasting, direct inhibition of myostatin was shown to positively impact skeletal muscle mass in heart failure, suggesting a promising strategy for the treatment of cardiac cachexia in the future. PMID:21421824

  1. Policy, systems, and environmental approaches for obesity prevention: a framework to inform local and state action.

    PubMed

    Lyn, Rodney; Aytur, Semra; Davis, Tobey A; Eyler, Amy A; Evenson, Kelly R; Chriqui, Jamie F; Cradock, Angie L; Goins, Karin Valentine; Litt, Jill; Brownson, Ross C

    2013-01-01

    The public health literature has not fully explored the complexities of the policy process as they relate to public health practice and obesity prevention. We conducted a review of the literature across the policy science and public health fields, distilled key theories of policy making, and developed a framework to inform policy, systems, and environmental change efforts on obesity prevention. Beginning with a conceptual description, we focus on understanding three domains of the policy process: the problem domain, the policy domain, and the political domain. We identify key activities in the policy process including the following: (a) assessing the social and political environment; (b) engaging, educating and collaborating with key individuals and groups; (c) identifying and framing the problem; (d) utilizing available evidence; (e) identifying policy solutions; and (f) building public support and political will. The article provides policy change resources and case studies to guide and support local and state efforts around obesity prevention.

  2. Beyond Knowledge: Service Learning and Local Climate Change Research Engagement Activities that Foster Action and Behavior Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Low, R.; Mandryk, C.; Gosselin, D. C.; Haney, C.

    2013-12-01

    Climate change engagement requires individuals to understand an abstract and complex topic and realize the profound implications of climate change for their families and local community. In recent years federal agencies have spent millions of dollars on climate change education to prepare a nation for a warming future. The majority of these education efforts are based on a knowledge deficit model. In this view 'educate' means 'provide information'. However cognitive and behavioral research and current action demonstrate that information alone is not enough; knowledge does not necessarily lead to action. Educators are speaking to deaf ears if we rely on passive and abstract information transfer and neglect more persuasive and affective approaches to communication. When climate change is presented abstractly as something that happens in the future to people, environments, animals somewhere else it is easy to discount. People employ two separate systems for information processing: analytical-rational and intuitive-experiential Authentic local research experiences that engage both analytical and experiential information processing systems not only help individuals understand the abstraction of climate change in a concrete and personally experienced manner, but are more likely to influence behavior. Two on-line, graduate-level courses offered within University of Nebraska's Masters of Applied Science program provide opportunities for participants to engage in authentic inquiry based studies climate change's local impacts, and work with K-12 learners in promoting the scientific awareness and behavioral changes that mitigate against the negative impacts of a changing climate. The courses are specifically designed to improve middle and high school (grades 6-12) teachers' content knowledge of climate processes and climate change science in the context of their own community. Both courses provide data-rich, investigative science experiences in a distributed digital

  3. Evaluating biodiversity of mineral lands

    SciTech Connect

    Wade, G.L.; Tritton, L.M.

    1997-12-31

    Increasingly, lands intended for mining, or lands that have been mined and reclaimed, are being evaluated in terms of biological diversity (biodiversity). The concept of biodiversity includes die variety and number of living organisms, their organizations, and the environments that support them. This paper presents a framework for discussing and evaluating biodiversity and for constructing checklists for evaluating biodiversity before and after mining. This framework identifies some of the different types of biodiversity applicable to mineral lands, die ranges of scale at which they are applicable, and the social stakes and stakeholders relevant across scale and diversity types.

  4. Inhibitory Action of Ethanolic Extract of Seeds of Moringa oleifera Lam. On Systemic and Local Anaphylaxis.

    PubMed

    Mahajan, Shailaja G; Mehta, Anita A

    2007-10-01

    The current study characterizes the mechanism by which the seed extract of Moringa oleifera Lam (Moringaceae) decreases the mast cell-mediated immediate type hypersensitivity reaction. The immediate type hypersensitivity reaction is involved in many allergic diseases such as asthma and allergic rhinitis. Moringa oleifera, a shrub widely used in the traditional medicine in India, has been reported to possess anti-cancer, hypotensive, anti-arthritic, and anti-inflammatory activities. In the present study, the effects of the ethanolic extract of seeds of Moringa oleifera (MOEE-herbal remedy) on systemic and local anaphylaxis were investigated. The potential anti-anaphylactic effect of MOEE was studied in a mouse model of Compound 48/80-induced systemic anaphylactic shock. Passive cutaneous anaphylaxis activated by anti IgE-antibody was also used to assess the effect of MOEE. In addition, rat peritoneal mast cells (RPMC) were used to investigate the effect of MOEE on histamine release induced by compound 48/80. When administered 1 hr before 48/80 injection, MOEE at doses of 0.001-1.000 g/kg completely inhibited the inducible induced anaphylactic shock. MOEE significantly inhibited passive cutaneous anaphylaxis activated by anti-IgE antibody at a dose of 1 g/kg. When MOEE extract was given as pretreatment at concentrations ranging 0.1-100 mg/ml, the histamine release from the mast cells that was induced by the 48/80 was reduced in a dose-dependent manner. These results suggest a potential role for MOEE as a source of anti-anaphylactic agents for use in allergic disorders.

  5. Wilderness and biodiversity conservation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mittermeier, R. A.; Mittermeier, C. G.; Brooks, T. M.; Pilgrim, J. D.; Konstant, W. R.; da Fonseca, G. A. B.; Kormos, C.

    2003-09-01

    Human pressure threatens many species and ecosystems, so conservation efforts necessarily prioritize saving them. However, conservation should clearly be proactive wherever possible. In this article, we assess the biodiversity conservation value, and specifically the irreplaceability in terms of species endemism, of those of the planet's ecosystems that remain intact. We find that 24 wilderness areas, all > 1 million hectares, are > 70% intact and have human densities of less than or equal to five people per km2. This wilderness covers 44% of all land but is inhabited by only 3% of people. Given this sparse population, wilderness conservation is cost-effective, especially if ecosystem service value is incorporated. Soberingly, however, most wilderness is not speciose: only 18% of plants and 10% of terrestrial vertebrates are endemic to individual wildernesses, the majority restricted to Amazonia, Congo, New Guinea, the Miombo-Mopane woodlands, and the North American deserts. Global conservation strategy must target these five wildernesses while continuing to prioritize threatened biodiversity hotspots.

  6. Beyond biodiversity: fish metagenomes.

    PubMed

    Ardura, Alba; Planes, Serge; Garcia-Vazquez, Eva

    2011-01-01

    Biodiversity and intra-specific genetic diversity are interrelated and determine the potential of a community to survive and evolve. Both are considered together in Prokaryote communities treated as metagenomes or ensembles of functional variants beyond species limits.Many factors alter biodiversity in higher Eukaryote communities, and human exploitation can be one of the most important for some groups of plants and animals. For example, fisheries can modify both biodiversity and genetic diversity (intra specific). Intra-specific diversity can be drastically altered by overfishing. Intense fishing pressure on one stock may imply extinction of some genetic variants and subsequent loss of intra-specific diversity. The objective of this study was to apply a metagenome approach to fish communities and explore its value for rapid evaluation of biodiversity and genetic diversity at community level. Here we have applied the metagenome approach employing the barcoding target gene coi as a model sequence in catch from four very different fish assemblages exploited by fisheries: freshwater communities from the Amazon River and northern Spanish rivers, and marine communities from the Cantabric and Mediterranean seas.Treating all sequences obtained from each regional catch as a biological unit (exploited community) we found that metagenomic diversity indices of the Amazonian catch sample here examined were lower than expected. Reduced diversity could be explained, at least partially, by overexploitation of the fish community that had been independently estimated by other methods.We propose using a metagenome approach for estimating diversity in Eukaryote communities and early evaluating genetic variation losses at multi-species level.

  7. The value of biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Alho, C J R

    2008-11-01

    In addition to its intrinsic value (nature working as it is; species are the product of a long history of continuing evolution by means of ecological processes, and so they have the right to continued existence), biodiversity also plays a fundamental role as ecosystem services in the maintenance of natural ecological processes. The economic or utilitarian values of biodiversity rely upon the dependence of man on biodiversity; products that nature can provide: wood, food, fibers to make paper, resins, chemical organic products, genes as well as knowledge for biotechnology, including medicine and cosmetic sub-products. It also encompasses ecosystem services, such as climate regulation, reproductive and feeding habitats for commercial fish, some organisms that can create soil fertility through complex cycles and interactions, such as earthworms, termites and bacteria, in addition to fungi responsible for cycling nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus and sulfur and making them available to plant absorption. These services are the benefits that people indirectly receive from natural ecosystem functions (air quality maintenance, regional climate, water quality, nutrient cycling, reproductive habitats of commercial fish, etc.) with their related economic values.

  8. Environmental services of biodiversity.

    PubMed Central

    Myers, N

    1996-01-01

    Humans derive many utilitarian benefits from the environmental services of biotas and ecosystems. This is often advanced as a prime argument to support conservation of biodiversity. There is much to be said for this viewpoint, as is documented in this paper through a summary assessment of several categories of environmental services, including regulation of climate and biogeochemical cycles, hydrological functions, soil protection, crop pollination, pest control, recreation and ecotourism, and a number of miscellaneous services. It is shown that the services are indeed significant, whether in ecological or economic senses. Particularly important is the factor of ecosystem resilience, which appears to underpin many of the services. It should not be supposed, however, that environmental services stem necessarily and exclusively from biodiversity. While biodiversity often plays a key role, the services can also derive from biomass and other attributes of biotas. The paper concludes with a brief overview assessment of economic values at issue and an appraisal of the implications for conservation planning. PMID:11607645

  9. Education and biodiversity

    SciTech Connect

    Ahearn, S.K.

    1988-01-01

    This study focuses on the importance of developing educational programs about biological diversity in order to preserve it more effectively. The study is divided into two parts. Part I is a needs assessment consisting of the results of: (1) a survey and checklist of land management and education/interpretive practices in natural areas of the United States, (2) a study of ecology research reports, (3) interviews of scientists, land managers, and environmental educators in natural areas, and (4) an analysis of popular published environmental-education activity and curriculum guides. From this, a set of needs was identified for purposes of planning activities for teaching about biodiversity in natural areas. Part II consists of sample activities that represent ways to incorporate current knowledge of biodiversity into education/interpretive programming on nature preserves, parks, and wildlife refuges. The ideas focus mainly on developing an understanding of what biodiversity looks like, from the scale of the habitat to the landscape, and from the genetic level to the ecosystem level. The activities are grouped according to six major topics: open space, marine resources, energy, solid waste, surface waters, and freshwater wetlands, and groundwater.

  10. Biodiversity, globalisation and poverty.

    PubMed

    Olorode, Omotoye

    2007-06-10

    The erosion of the stock of biodiversity on earth developed historically with the so-called voyages of discovery (and their antecedents), colonial conquests and the accompanying movements of natural products and peoples, i.e. movements of populations and genetic materials. These events happened with the development of technology and the so-called conquest, by man, of his environment and the appertaining development of specialization not only in industry but also in agriculture and environmental management. The development of specialization resulted in the homogenization of processes, products, inputs and input industries; this increased homogenization had the corollary of arrested heterogeneity across the board; what they call globalization is part of this process. The efficiency of homogenization, however, engendered new problems of fragility of human environment and of production and social relations and processes. The effects of this complex situation, in general terms and in terms of biodiversity in particular, have been more devastating for the more vulnerable regions, classes of people, and peoples of the world. A continuous rethinking of the epistemology and the social and political bases of existing policies on environment in general, and of biodiversity conservation in particular, has become imperative.

  11. Network of communities in the fight against AIDS: local actions to address health inequities and promote health in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Edmundo, Kátia; Guimarães, Wanda; Vasconcelos, Maria do Socorro; Baptista, Ana Paula; Becker, Daniel

    2005-01-01

    When combined with major social inequities, the AIDS epidemic in Brazil becomes much more complex and requires effective and participatory community-based interventions. This article describes the experience of a civil society organisation, the Centre for Health Promotion (CEDAPS), in the slum communities (favelas) of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Using a community-based participatory approach, 55 community organisations were mobilised to develop local actions to address the increasing social vulnerability to HIV/AIDS of people living in squatter communities. This was done through on-going prevention initiatives based on the local culture and developed by a Network of Communities. The community movement has created a sense of "ownership" of social actions. The fight against AIDS has been a mobilising factor in engaging and organising communities and has contributed to raising awareness of health rights. Local actions included targeting the determinants of local vulnerability, as suggested by health promotion workers.

  12. Assessing soil biodiversity potentials in Europe.

    PubMed

    Aksoy, Ece; Louwagie, Geertrui; Gardi, Ciro; Gregor, Mirko; Schröder, Christoph; Löhnertz, Manuel

    2017-07-01

    Soil is important as a critical component for the functioning of terrestrial ecosystems. The largest part of the terrestrial biodiversity relies, directly or indirectly, on soil. Furthermore, soil itself is habitat to a great diversity of organisms. The suitability of soil to host such a diversity is strongly related to its physico-chemical features and environmental properties. However, due to the complexity of both soil and biodiversity, it is difficult to identify a clear and unambiguous relationship between environmental parameters and soil biota. Nevertheless, the increasing diffusion of a more integrated view of ecosystems, and in particular the development of the concept of ecosystem services, highlights the need for a better comprehension of the role played by soils in offering these services, including the habitat provision. An assessment of the capability of soils to host biodiversity would contribute to evaluate the quality of soils in order to help policy makers with the development of appropriate and sustainable management actions. However, so far, the heterogeneity of soils has been a barrier to the production of a large-scale framework that directly links soil features to organisms living within it. The current knowledge on the effects of soil physico-chemical properties on biota and the available data at continental scale open the way towards such an evaluation. In this study, the soil habitat potential for biodiversity was assessed and mapped for the first time throughout Europe by combining several soil features (pH, soil texture and soil organic matter) with environmental parameters (potential evapotranspiration, average temperature, soil biomass productivity and land use type). Considering the increasingly recognized importance of soils and their biodiversity in providing ecosystem services, the proposed approach appears to be a promising tool that may contribute to open a forum on the need to include soils in future environmental policy making

  13. Drastic underestimation of amphipod biodiversity in the endangered Irano-Anatolian and Caucasus biodiversity hotspots.

    PubMed

    Katouzian, Ahmad-Reza; Sari, Alireza; Macher, Jan N; Weiss, Martina; Saboori, Alireza; Leese, Florian; Weigand, Alexander M

    2016-03-01

    Biodiversity hotspots are centers of biological diversity and particularly threatened by anthropogenic activities. Their true magnitude of species diversity and endemism, however, is still largely unknown as species diversity is traditionally assessed using morphological descriptions only, thereby ignoring cryptic species. This directly limits evidence-based monitoring and management strategies. Here we used molecular species delimitation methods to quantify cryptic diversity of the montane amphipods in the Irano-Anatolian and Caucasus biodiversity hotspots. Amphipods are ecosystem engineers in rivers and lakes. Species diversity was assessed by analysing two genetic markers (mitochondrial COI and nuclear 28S rDNA), compared with morphological assignments. Our results unambiguously demonstrate that species diversity and endemism is dramatically underestimated, with 42 genetically identified freshwater species in only five reported morphospecies. Over 90% of the newly recovered species cluster inside Gammarus komareki and G. lacustris; 69% of the recovered species comprise narrow range endemics. Amphipod biodiversity is drastically underestimated for the studied regions. Thus, the risk of biodiversity loss is significantly greater than currently inferred as most endangered species remain unrecognized and/or are only found locally. Integrative application of genetic assessments in monitoring programs will help to understand the true magnitude of biodiversity and accurately evaluate its threat status.

  14. Drastic underestimation of amphipod biodiversity in the endangered Irano-Anatolian and Caucasus biodiversity hotspots

    PubMed Central

    Katouzian, Ahmad-Reza; Sari, Alireza; Macher, Jan N.; Weiss, Martina; Saboori, Alireza; Leese, Florian; Weigand, Alexander M.

    2016-01-01

    Biodiversity hotspots are centers of biological diversity and particularly threatened by anthropogenic activities. Their true magnitude of species diversity and endemism, however, is still largely unknown as species diversity is traditionally assessed using morphological descriptions only, thereby ignoring cryptic species. This directly limits evidence-based monitoring and management strategies. Here we used molecular species delimitation methods to quantify cryptic diversity of the montane amphipods in the Irano-Anatolian and Caucasus biodiversity hotspots. Amphipods are ecosystem engineers in rivers and lakes. Species diversity was assessed by analysing two genetic markers (mitochondrial COI and nuclear 28S rDNA), compared with morphological assignments. Our results unambiguously demonstrate that species diversity and endemism is dramatically underestimated, with 42 genetically identified freshwater species in only five reported morphospecies. Over 90% of the newly recovered species cluster inside Gammarus komareki and G. lacustris; 69% of the recovered species comprise narrow range endemics. Amphipod biodiversity is drastically underestimated for the studied regions. Thus, the risk of biodiversity loss is significantly greater than currently inferred as most endangered species remain unrecognized and/or are only found locally. Integrative application of genetic assessments in monitoring programs will help to understand the true magnitude of biodiversity and accurately evaluate its threat status. PMID:26928527

  15. Has land use pushed terrestrial biodiversity beyond the planetary boundary? A global assessment.

    PubMed

    Newbold, Tim; Hudson, Lawrence N; Arnell, Andrew P; Contu, Sara; De Palma, Adriana; Ferrier, Simon; Hill, Samantha L L; Hoskins, Andrew J; Lysenko, Igor; Phillips, Helen R P; Burton, Victoria J; Chng, Charlotte W T; Emerson, Susan; Gao, Di; Pask-Hale, Gwilym; Hutton, Jon; Jung, Martin; Sanchez-Ortiz, Katia; Simmons, Benno I; Whitmee, Sarah; Zhang, Hanbin; Scharlemann, Jörn P W; Purvis, Andy

    2016-07-15

    Land use and related pressures have reduced local terrestrial biodiversity, but it is unclear how the magnitude of change relates to the recently proposed planetary boundary ("safe limit"). We estimate that land use and related pressures have already reduced local biodiversity intactness--the average proportion of natural biodiversity remaining in local ecosystems--beyond its recently proposed planetary boundary across 58.1% of the world's land surface, where 71.4% of the human population live. Biodiversity intactness within most biomes (especially grassland biomes), most biodiversity hotspots, and even some wilderness areas is inferred to be beyond the boundary. Such widespread transgression of safe limits suggests that biodiversity loss, if unchecked, will undermine efforts toward long-term sustainable development.

  16. Food variety and biodiversity: Econutrition.

    PubMed

    Wahlqvist, M L; Specht, R L

    1998-12-01

    Both annual biomass production and biodiversity at any locality on earth are continually under threat as the population of Homo sapiens steadily increases, with the resultant pollution of atmosphere, soil and water. Today, environmental degradation and global warming (with its effect on evaporative aerodynamics and cellular respiration) have increased at an alarming rate. The ABP of all terrestrial plant communities (natural or cultivated) is slowly declining, thus reducing the energy supply of component plants and resident animals; in turn, the biodiversity of all the world's ecosystems, plant and animal, is threatened. The maintenance of biodiversity is important to human health for several reasons: (i) a varied food supply is essential to maintain the health of the omnivorous human species; (ii) a range of diverse food sources is necessary to safe-guard against climatic and pestilent disasters which may affect one or more of the food sources; (iii) a diversity of plants and animals may provide a rich source of medicinal material, essential for the extraction of undiscovered therapeutic compounds; (iv) intact ecosystems of indigenous plants and animals appear to act as a buffer to the spread of invasive plants and animals, and of pathogens and toxins, thus contributing to the health of populations nearby; and (v) the 'spiritual' values of exploring the diversity of plants, animals and ecosystems in an area appear to have a beneficial effect on mental health, strengthening the feeling of 'belonging to the landscape'. The variety of foods, their energy contents and food values, consumed throughout the year is amenable to scientific enquiry; as is the amount of energy expended in this collection or production. The control and management of food production and of water supplies, with attention to safety issues, has led to an improvement in life expectancy for a proportion of the world's population. The question is at what point might human health be disadvantaged by

  17. Large-scale biodiversity patterns in freshwater phytoplankton.

    PubMed

    Stomp, Maayke; Huisman, Jef; Mittelbach, Gary G; Litchman, Elena; Klausmeier, Christopher A

    2011-11-01

    Our planet shows striking gradients in the species richness of plants and animals, from high biodiversity in the tropics to low biodiversity in polar and high-mountain regions. Recently, similar patterns have been described for some groups of microorganisms, but the large-scale biogeographical distribution of freshwater phytoplankton diversity is still largely unknown. We examined the species diversity of freshwater phytoplankton sampled from 540 lakes and reservoirs distributed across the continental United States and found strong latitudinal, longitudinal, and altitudinal gradients in phytoplankton biodiversity, demonstrating that microorganisms can show substantial geographic variation in biodiversity. Detailed analysis using structural equation models indicated that these large-scale biodiversity gradients in freshwater phytoplankton diversity were mainly driven by local environmental factors, although there were residual direct effects of latitude, longitude, and altitude as well. Specifically, we found that phytoplankton species richness was an increasing saturating function of lake chlorophyll a concentration, increased with lake surface area and possibly increased with water temperature, resembling effects of productivity, habitat area, and temperature on diversity patterns commonly observed for macroorganisms. In turn, these local environmental factors varied along latitudinal, longitudinal, and altitudinal gradients. These results imply that changes in land use or climate that affect these local environmental factors are likely to have major impacts on large-scale biodiversity patterns of freshwater phytoplankton.

  18. Microbial diversity in soil: A microscopic world under every footstep -- chapter 13 in the book "Biodiversity Conservation Handbook: State, Local, and Private Protection of Biological Diversity," Environmental Law Institute, Washington, DC, 2006, pp.159-174

    SciTech Connect

    Edenborn, H.M.; Edenborn, S.L.

    2006-06-01

    Powerful methods that can be used to explore and better surmise the role of microorganisms in the environment have only been developed in the last 20 years, and the discoveries being made with these techniques have been revolutionary compared to those of the previous century. These new molecular tools now enable us to better categorize microbial life and determine its diversity. The importance of the ecosystem and economic functions served by microorganisms further suggests that microbial diversity should be considered as an important, if unseen, component of biodiversity, and that consideration of microbial diversity is an essential element of any program to conserve biodiversity.

  19. Biodiversity and ecosystem stability across scales in metacommunities.

    PubMed

    Wang, Shaopeng; Loreau, Michel

    2016-05-01

    Although diversity-stability relationships have been extensively studied in local ecosystems, the global biodiversity crisis calls for an improved understanding of these relationships in a spatial context. Here, we use a dynamical model of competitive metacommunities to study the relationships between species diversity and ecosystem variability across scales. We derive analytic relationships under a limiting case; these results are extended to more general cases with numerical simulations. Our model shows that, while alpha diversity decreases local ecosystem variability, beta diversity generally contributes to increasing spatial asynchrony among local ecosystems. Consequently, both alpha and beta diversity provide stabilising effects for regional ecosystems, through local and spatial insurance effects respectively. We further show that at the regional scale, the stabilising effect of biodiversity increases as spatial environmental correlation increases. Our findings have important implications for understanding the interactive effects of global environmental changes (e.g. environmental homogenisation) and biodiversity loss on ecosystem sustainability at large scales.

  20. Biodiversity and ecosystem stability across scales in metacommunities

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shaopeng; Loreau, Michel

    2016-01-01

    Although diversity-stability relationships have been extensively studied in local ecosystems, the global biodiversity crisis calls for an improved understanding of these relationships in a spatial context. Here we use a dynamical model of competitive metacommunities to study the relationships between species diversity and ecosystem variability across scales. We derive analytic relationships under a limiting case; these results are extended to more general cases with numerical simulations. Our model shows that, while alpha diversity decreases local ecosystem variability, beta diversity generally contributes to increasing spatial asynchrony among local ecosystems. Consequently, both alpha and beta diversity provide stabilizing effects for regional ecosystems, through local and spatial insurance effects, respectively. We further show that at the regional scale, the stabilizing effect of biodiversity increases as spatial environmental correlation increases. Our findings have important implications for understanding the interactive effects of global environmental changes (e.g. environmental homogenization) and biodiversity loss on ecosystem sustainability at large scales. PMID:26918536

  1. Response of Stream Biodiversity to Increasing Salinization

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hawkins, C. P.; Vander Laan, J. J.; Olson, J. R.

    2014-12-01

    We used a large data set of macroinvertebrate samples collected from streams in both reference-quality (n = 68) and degraded (n = 401) watersheds in the state of Nevada, USA to assess relationships between stream biodiversity and salinity. We used specific electrical conductance (EC)(μS/cm) as a measure of salinity, and applied a previously developed EC model to estimate natural, baseflow salinity at each stream. We used the difference between observed and predicted salinity (EC-Diff) as a measure of salinization associated with watershed degradation. Observed levels of EC varied between 22 and 994 μS/cm across reference sites and 22 to 3,256 uS/cm across non-reference sites. EC-Diff was as high as 2,743 μS/cm. We used a measure of local biodiversity completeness (ratio of observed to expected number of taxa) to assess ecological response to salinity. This O/E index decreased nearly linearly up to about 25% biodiversity loss, which occurred at EC-Diff of about 300 μS/cm. Too few sites had EC-Diff greater than 300 μS/cm to draw reliable inferences regarding biodiversity response to greater levels of salinization. EC-Diff increased with % agricultural land use, mine density, and % urban land use in the watersheds implying that human activities have been largely responsible for increased salinization in Nevada streams and rivers. Comparison of biological responses to EC and other stressors indicates that increased salinization may be the primary stressor causing biodiversity loss in these streams and that more stringent salinity water quality standards may be needed to protect aquatic life.

  2. Typology of public outreach for biodiversity conservation projects in Spain.

    PubMed

    Jiménez, Amanda; Iniesta-Arandia, Irene; Muñoz-Santos, Maria; Martín-López, Berta; Jacobson, Susan K; Benayas, Javier

    2014-06-01

    Conservation education and outreach programs are a key approach to promote public understanding of the importance of biodiversity conservation. We reviewed 85 biodiversity conservation projects supported by the Spanish Ministry of Environment's Biodiversity Foundation. Through content analysis and descriptive statistics, we examined how the projects carried out communication, education, and public awareness and participation (CEPA) actions. We also used multivariate statistical analysis to develop a typology of 4 classes of biodiversity conservation projects on the basis of CEPA implementation. The classifications were delineated by purpose of CEPA, level of integration of CEPA actions, type of CEPA goals, main CEPA stakeholders, and aim of conservation. Our results confirm the existence of 2 key positions: CEPA has intrinsic value (i.e., they supposed the implementation of any CEPA action indirectly supported conservation) and CEPA is an instrument for achieving conservation goals. We also found that most CEPA actions addressed general audiences and school children, ignored minority groups and women, and did not include evaluation. The characteristics of the 4 types of projects and their frequency of implementation in the sample reflect the need for better integration of different types of actions (communication, education, and participation) and improved fostering of participation of multiple stakeholders in developing policy and implementing management strategies.

  3. Soil biodiversity and human health

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wall, Diana H.; Nielsen, Uffe N.; Six, Johan

    2015-12-01

    Soil biodiversity is increasingly recognized as providing benefits to human health because it can suppress disease-causing soil organisms and provide clean air, water and food. Poor land-management practices and environmental change are, however, affecting belowground communities globally, and the resulting declines in soil biodiversity reduce and impair these benefits. Importantly, current research indicates that soil biodiversity can be maintained and partially restored if managed sustainably. Promoting the ecological complexity and robustness of soil biodiversity through improved management practices represents an underutilized resource with the ability to improve human health.

  4. Soil biodiversity and human health.

    PubMed

    Wall, Diana H; Nielsen, Uffe N; Six, Johan

    2015-12-03

    Soil biodiversity is increasingly recognized as providing benefits to human health because it can suppress disease-causing soil organisms and provide clean air, water and food. Poor land-management practices and environmental change are, however, affecting belowground communities globally, and the resulting declines in soil biodiversity reduce and impair these benefits. Importantly, current research indicates that soil biodiversity can be maintained and partially restored if managed sustainably. Promoting the ecological complexity and robustness of soil biodiversity through improved management practices represents an underutilized resource with the ability to improve human health.

  5. Recovering plant biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Studying recovering plant biodiversity on Mount Pinatubo may provide valuable insights that improve our understanding of recovery of other ecosystems following disturbances of all types. Ongoing sheet and rill erosion coupled with mass waste events in the unstable pyroclastic flow deposits persist, effectively re-setting primary succession at micro-landscape scale without affecting habitat level diversity. Spatial factors and micro-habitat diversity may exert more control over continued succession as the riparian systems become more deeply dissected and complex. The number of taxa within functional groups and conservation concerns are botanical issues that deserve further research. PMID:22019638

  6. Wilderness and biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Mittermeier, R A; Mittermeier, C G; Brooks, T M; Pilgrim, J D; Konstant, W R; da Fonseca, G A B; Kormos, C

    2003-09-02

    Human pressure threatens many species and ecosystems, so conservation efforts necessarily prioritize saving them. However, conservation should clearly be proactive wherever possible. In this article, we assess the biodiversity conservation value, and specifically the irreplaceability in terms of species endemism, of those of the planet's ecosystems that remain intact. We find that 24 wilderness areas, all > or = 1 million hectares, are > or = 70% intact and have human densities of less than or equal to five people per km2. This wilderness covers 44% of all land but is inhabited by only 3% of people. Given this sparse population, wilderness conservation is cost-effective, especially if ecosystem service value is incorporated. Soberingly, however, most wilderness is not speciose: only 18% of plants and 10% of terrestrial vertebrates are endemic to individual wildernesses, the majority restricted to Amazonia, Congo, New Guinea, the Miombo-Mopane woodlands, and the North American deserts. Global conservation strategy must target these five wildernesses while continuing to prioritize threatened biodiversity hotspots.

  7. Structural Analysis of Biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Sirovich, Lawrence; Stoeckle, Mark Y.; Zhang, Yu

    2010-01-01

    Large, recently-available genomic databases cover a wide range of life forms, suggesting opportunity for insights into genetic structure of biodiversity. In this study we refine our recently-described technique using indicator vectors to analyze and visualize nucleotide sequences. The indicator vector approach generates correlation matrices, dubbed Klee diagrams, which represent a novel way of assembling and viewing large genomic datasets. To explore its potential utility, here we apply the improved algorithm to a collection of almost 17000 DNA barcode sequences covering 12 widely-separated animal taxa, demonstrating that indicator vectors for classification gave correct assignment in all 11000 test cases. Indicator vector analysis revealed discontinuities corresponding to species- and higher-level taxonomic divisions, suggesting an efficient approach to classification of organisms from poorly-studied groups. As compared to standard distance metrics, indicator vectors preserve diagnostic character probabilities, enable automated classification of test sequences, and generate high-information density single-page displays. These results support application of indicator vectors for comparative analysis of large nucleotide data sets and raise prospect of gaining insight into broad-scale patterns in the genetic structure of biodiversity. PMID:20195371

  8. Net present biodiversity value and the design of biodiversity offsets.

    PubMed

    Overton, Jacob McC; Stephens, R T Theo; Ferrier, Simon

    2013-02-01

    There is an urgent need to develop sound theory and practice for biodiversity offsets to provide a better basis for offset multipliers, to improve accounting for time delays in offset repayments, and to develop a common framework for evaluating in-kind and out-of-kind offsets. Here, we apply concepts and measures from systematic conservation planning and financial accounting to provide a basis for determining equity across type (of biodiversity), space, and time. We introduce net present biodiversity value (NPBV) as a theoretical and practical measure for defining the offset required to achieve no-net-loss. For evaluating equity in type and space we use measures of biodiversity value from systematic conservation planning. Time discount rates are used to address risk of non-repayment, and loss of utility. We illustrate these concepts and measures with two examples of biodiversity impact-offset transactions. Considerable further work is required to understand the characteristics of these approaches.

  9. A one ocean model of biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    O'Dor, Ronald K.; Fennel, Katja; Berghe, Edward Vanden

    2009-09-01

    The history of life is written in the ocean, and the history of the ocean is written in DNA. Geologists have shown us that hundreds of millions of years of ocean history can be revealed from records of a single phylum in cores of mud from abyssal plains. We are now accumulating genetic tools to unravel the relationships of hundreds of phyla to track this history back billions of years. The technologies demonstrated by the Census of Marine Life (CoML) mean that the ocean is no longer opaque or unknowable. The secrets of the largest component of the biosphere are knowable. The cost of understanding the history of ocean life is not cheap, but it is also not prohibitive. A transparent, open ocean is available for us to use to understand ourselves. This article develops a model of biodiversity equilibration in a single, physically static ocean as a step towards biodiversity in physically complex real oceans. It attempts to be quantitative and to simultaneously account for biodiversity patterns from bacteria to whales focusing on emergent properties rather than details. Biodiversity reflects long-term survival of DNA sequences, stabilizing "ecosystem services" despite environmental change. In the ocean, mechanisms for ensuring survival range from prokaryotes maintaining low concentrations of replicable DNA throughout the ocean volume, anticipating local change, to animals whose mobility increases with mass to avoid local change through movement. Whales can reach any point in the ocean in weeks, but prokaryotes can only diffuse. The high metabolic costs of mobility are offset by the dramatically lower number of DNA replicates required to ensure survival. Reproduction rates probably scale more or less inversely with body mass. Bacteria respond in a week, plankton in a year, whales in a century. We generally lack coherent theories to explain the origins of animals (metazoans) and the contributions of biodiversity to ecosystems. The One Ocean Model suggests that mobile

  10. Evaluating the contribution of zoos and aquariums to Aichi Biodiversity Target 1.

    PubMed

    Moss, Andrew; Jensen, Eric; Gusset, Markus

    2015-04-01

    The United Nations Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 is a key initiative within global efforts to halt and eventually reverse the loss of biodiversity. The very first target of this plan states that "by 2020, at the latest, people are aware of the values of biodiversity and the steps they can take to conserve and use it sustainably." Zoos and aquariums worldwide, attracting more than 700 million visits every year, could potentially make a positive contribution to this target. However, a global evaluation of the educational impacts of visits to zoos and aquariums is entirely lacking in the existing literature. To address this gap, we conducted a large-scale impact evaluation study. We used a pre- and postvisit repeated-measures survey design to evaluate biodiversity literacy-understanding of biodiversity and knowledge of actions to help protect it-of zoo and aquarium visitors worldwide. Ours was the largest and most international study of zoo and aquarium visitors ever conducted. In total, 5661 visitors to 26 zoos and aquariums from 19 countries around the globe participated in the study. Aggregate biodiversity understanding and knowledge of actions to help protect biodiversity both significantly increased over the course of zoo and aquarium visits. There was an increase from previsit (69.8%) to postvisit (75.1%) in respondents demonstrating at least some positive evidence of biodiversity understanding. Similarly, there was an increase from previsit (50.5%) to postvisit (58.8%) in respondents who could identify actions to help protect biodiversity that could be achieved at an individual level. Our results are the most compelling evidence to date that zoo and aquarium visits contribute to increasing the number of people who understand biodiversity and know actions they can take to help protect biodiversity.

  11. Engaging the public in biodiversity issues

    PubMed Central

    Novacek, Michael J.

    2008-01-01

    To engage people in biodiversity and other environmental issues, one must provide the opportunity for enhanced understanding that empowers individuals to make choices and take action based on sound science and reliable recommendations. To this end, we must acknowledge some real challenges. Recent surveys show that, despite growing public concern, environmental issues still rank below many other problems, such as terrorism, health care, the economy, and (in the U.S.) family values. Moreover, much of the recent upswing in interest in the environment is due to the marked shift in attention to global warming away from other environmental problems such as destruction of ecosystems, water pollution, overpopulation, and biodiversity loss. Such a change in public focus often comes with a tendency to decouple various environmental problems and ignore their synergistic effects. Exacerbating this problem are arguments from the media and other sources that discourage public interest in environmental topics by characterizing the science behind them as overly complex, immersed in debate and controversy, and detached from human interests. Educational programming, media, exhibitions, and other means of public outreach should build on the welcome increase in public interest in global warming by demonstrating the interplay of various environmental disruptions. In the case of biodiversity, the importance of species in providing ecosystem services, natural beauty and pleasure, and sustaining human lives is a message that requires constant attention and recrafting to impact diverse audiences. PMID:18695244

  12. Biodiversity and global health—hubris, humility and the unknown

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephens, Carolyn

    2012-03-01

    Conservation Congress (WCC4) in 2008, and to advance their implementation. These resolutions, along with the Durban Action Plan and the Programme of Work on Protected Areas of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), are often termed as the 'new conservation paradigm' [31]. Scientists, UN agencies, and indigenous and local communities agree that we have reached a critical time for biodiversity globally. But who will decide on the policies for protection of biodiversity? Triage may be on the agenda of pessimistic conservation scientists, but indigenous and local communities would rarely have such hubris as to assume that they have the wisdom to make triage decisions, and nor would many communities have the arrogance to think they have the right to intervene in this way in their complex ecosystems. While debates continue and biodiversity declines annually, there is a group of actors who will be crucial in decisions on our planet's future, including biodiversity and climate change. The world's population is now predominantly urban [32]. It is urban citizens who are driving the exploitation of the world's ecosystems and the model of unsustainable over-consumption [33]. It is highly likely that it is urban populations who will decide the fate of biodiversity and climate change, through their decisions about resource use and consumption [34, 35]. We demand a great deal of urban populations when we ask them to lead a sustainable future. The majority of urban citizens are trained, as are most scientists, to hold a utilitarian view of the environment. Perhaps this is the great hubris of recent human history—the assumptions of the anthropocentric view of the global ecosystem: seeing our planet only for its services or its threats, and viewing ourselves as somehow external to the integrity of the ecosystem. And our most profound arrogance is in the assumption that we understand the implications of our destruction of biodiversity for the well-being of future

  13. Biodiversity: past, present, and future

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sepkoski, J. J. Jr; Sepkoski JJ, J. r. (Principal Investigator)

    1997-01-01

    Data from the fossil record are used to illustrate biodiversity in the past and estimate modern biodiversity and loss. This data is used to compare current rates of extinction with past extinction events. Paleontologists are encouraged to use this data to understand the course and consequences of current losses and to share this knowledge with researchers interested in conservation and ecology.

  14. Undergraduate Students' Attitudes toward Biodiversity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huang, Hui-Ju; Lin, Yu-Teh Kirk

    2014-01-01

    The study investigated American and Taiwan undergraduate students' attitudes toward biodiversity. The survey questionnaire consisted of statements prompted by the question "To what extent do you agree with the following statements about problems with the biodiversity issues." Students indicated strongly disagree, disagree, agree,…

  15. Reconciling biodiversity and carbon conservation.

    PubMed

    Thomas, Chris D; Anderson, Barbara J; Moilanen, Atte; Eigenbrod, Felix; Heinemeyer, Andreas; Quaife, Tristan; Roy, David B; Gillings, Simon; Armsworth, Paul R; Gaston, Kevin J

    2013-05-01

    Climate change is leading to the development of land-based mitigation and adaptation strategies that are likely to have substantial impacts on global biodiversity. Of these, approaches to maintain carbon within existing natural ecosystems could have particularly large benefits for biodiversity. However, the geographical distributions of terrestrial carbon stocks and biodiversity differ. Using conservation planning analyses for the New World and Britain, we conclude that a carbon-only strategy would not be effective at conserving biodiversity, as have previous studies. Nonetheless, we find that a combined carbon-biodiversity strategy could simultaneously protect 90% of carbon stocks (relative to a carbon-only conservation strategy) and > 90% of the biodiversity (relative to a biodiversity-only strategy) in both regions. This combined approach encapsulates the principle of complementarity, whereby locations that contain different sets of species are prioritised, and hence disproportionately safeguard localised species that are not protected effectively by carbon-only strategies. It is efficient because localised species are concentrated into small parts of the terrestrial land surface, whereas carbon is somewhat more evenly distributed; and carbon stocks protected in one location are equivalent to those protected elsewhere. Efficient compromises can only be achieved when biodiversity and carbon are incorporated together within a spatial planning process.

  16. An Integrated Korean Biodiversity and Genetic Information Retrieval System

    PubMed Central

    Lim, Jeongheui; Bhak, Jong; Oh, Hee-Mock; Kim, Chang-Bae; Park, Yong-Ha; Paek, Woon Kee

    2008-01-01

    Background On-line biodiversity information databases are growing quickly and being integrated into general bioinformatics systems due to the advances of fast gene sequencing technologies and the Internet. These can reduce the cost and effort of performing biodiversity surveys and genetic searches, which allows scientists to spend more time researching and less time collecting and maintaining data. This will cause an increased rate of knowledge build-up and improve conservations. The biodiversity databases in Korea have been scattered among several institutes and local natural history museums with incompatible data types. Therefore, a comprehensive database and a nation wide web portal for biodiversity information is necessary in order to integrate diverse information resources, including molecular and genomic databases. Results The Korean Natural History Research Information System (NARIS) was built and serviced as the central biodiversity information system to collect and integrate the biodiversity data of various institutes and natural history museums in Korea. This database aims to be an integrated resource that contains additional biological information, such as genome sequences and molecular level diversity. Currently, twelve institutes and museums in Korea are integrated by the DiGIR (Distributed Generic Information Retrieval) protocol, with Darwin Core2.0 format as its metadata standard for data exchange. Data quality control and statistical analysis functions have been implemented. In particular, integrating molecular and genetic information from the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) databases with NARIS was recently accomplished. NARIS can also be extended to accommodate other institutes abroad, and the whole system can be exported to establish local biodiversity management servers. Conclusion A Korean data portal, NARIS, has been developed to efficiently manage and utilize biodiversity data, which includes genetic resources. NARIS aims

  17. Biodiversity tracks temperature over time.

    PubMed

    Mayhew, Peter J; Bell, Mark A; Benton, Timothy G; McGowan, Alistair J

    2012-09-18

    The geographic distribution of life on Earth supports a general pattern of increase in biodiversity with increasing temperature. However, some previous analyses of the 540-million-year Phanerozoic fossil record found a contrary relationship, with paleodiversity declining when the planet warms. These contradictory findings are hard to reconcile theoretically. We analyze marine invertebrate biodiversity patterns for the Phanerozoic Eon while controlling for sampling effort. This control appears to reverse the temporal association between temperature and biodiversity, such that taxonomic richness increases, not decreases, with temperature. Increasing temperatures also predict extinction and origination rates, alongside other abiotic and biotic predictor variables. These results undermine previous reports of a negative biodiversity-temperature relationship through time, which we attribute to paleontological sampling biases. Our findings suggest a convergence of global scale macroevolutionary and macroecological patterns for the biodiversity-temperature relationship.

  18. Prevention of Ca(2+)-mediated action potentials in GABAergic local circuit neurones of rat thalamus by a transient K+ current.

    PubMed Central

    Pape, H C; Budde, T; Mager, R; Kisvárday, Z F

    1994-01-01

    1. Neurones enzymatically dissociated from the rat dorsal lateral geniculate nucleus (LGN) were identified as GABAergic local circuit interneurones and geniculocortical relay cells, based upon quantitative analysis of soma profiles, immunohistochemical detection of GABA or glutamic acid decarboxylase, and basic electrogenic behaviour. 2. During whole-cell current-clamp recording, isolated LGN neurones generated firing patterns resembling those in intact tissue, with the most striking difference relating to the presence in relay cells of a Ca2+ action potential with a low threshold of activation, capable of triggering fast spikes, and the absence of a regenerative Ca2+ response with a low threshold of activation in local circuit cells. 3. Whole-cell voltage-clamp experiments demonstrated that both classes of LGN neurones possess at least two voltage-dependent membrane currents which operate in a range of membrane potentials negative to the threshold for generation of Na(+)-K(+)-mediated spikes: the T-type Ca2+ current (IT) and an A-type K+ current (IA). Taking into account the differences in membrane surface area, the average size of IT was similar in the two types of neurones, and interneurones possessed a slightly larger A-conductance. 4. In local circuit neurones, the ranges of steady-state inactivation and activation of IT and IA were largely overlapping (VH = 81.1 vs. -82.8 mV), both currents activated at around -70 mV, and they rapidly increased in amplitude with further depolarization. In relay cells, the inactivation curve of IT was negatively shifted along the voltage axis by about 20 mV compared with that of IA (Vh = -86.1 vs. -69.2 mV), and the activation threshold for IT (at -80 mV) was 20 mV more negative than that for IA. In interneurones, the activation range of IT was shifted to values more positive than that in relay cells (Vh = -54.9 vs. -64.5 mV), whereas the activation range of IA was more negative (Vh = -25.2 vs. -14.5 mV). 5. Under whole

  19. Landscape moderation of biodiversity patterns and processes - eight hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Tscharntke, Teja; Tylianakis, Jason M; Rand, Tatyana A; Didham, Raphael K; Fahrig, Lenore; Batáry, Péter; Bengtsson, Janne; Clough, Yann; Crist, Thomas O; Dormann, Carsten F; Ewers, Robert M; Fründ, Jochen; Holt, Robert D; Holzschuh, Andrea; Klein, Alexandra M; Kleijn, David; Kremen, Claire; Landis, Doug A; Laurance, William; Lindenmayer, David; Scherber, Christoph; Sodhi, Navjot; Steffan-Dewenter, Ingolf; Thies, Carsten; van der Putten, Wim H; Westphal, Catrin

    2012-08-01

    Understanding how landscape characteristics affect biodiversity patterns and ecological processes at local and landscape scales is critical for mitigating effects of global environmental change. In this review, we use knowledge gained from human-modified landscapes to suggest eight hypotheses, which we hope will encourage more systematic research on the role of landscape composition and configuration in determining the structure of ecological communities, ecosystem functioning and services. We organize the eight hypotheses under four overarching themes. Section A: 'landscape moderation of biodiversity patterns' includes (1) the landscape species pool hypothesis-the size of the landscape-wide species pool moderates local (alpha) biodiversity, and (2) the dominance of beta diversity hypothesis-landscape-moderated dissimilarity of local communities determines landscape-wide biodiversity and overrides negative local effects of habitat fragmentation on biodiversity. Section B: 'landscape moderation of population dynamics' includes (3) the cross-habitat spillover hypothesis-landscape-moderated spillover of energy, resources and organisms across habitats, including between managed and natural ecosystems, influences landscape-wide community structure and associated processes and (4) the landscape-moderated concentration and dilution hypothesis-spatial and temporal changes in landscape composition can cause transient concentration or dilution of populations with functional consequences. Section C: 'landscape moderation of functional trait selection' includes (5) the landscape-moderated functional trait selection hypothesis-landscape moderation of species trait selection shapes the functional role and trajectory of community assembly, and (6) the landscape-moderated insurance hypothesis-landscape complexity provides spatial and temporal insurance, i.e. high resilience and stability of ecological processes in changing environments. Section D: 'landscape constraints on

  20. Duality of Educational Policy as Global and Local: The Case of the Gender Equity Agenda in National Principles and State Actions

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ham, Seung-Hwan; Paine, Lynn W.; Cha, Yun-Kyung

    2011-01-01

    This study provides cross-national empirical evidence that substantiates the dialectic relationship between global and local contexts with regard to educational gender equity both as a national principle and as a priority for state action. Cross-national data on educational gender equity policies across 160 countries were gathered from…

  1. The Biodiversity Informatics Potential Index

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Biodiversity informatics is a relatively new discipline extending computer science in the context of biodiversity data, and its development to date has not been uniform throughout the world. Digitizing effort and capacity building are costly, and ways should be found to prioritize them rationally. The proposed 'Biodiversity Informatics Potential (BIP) Index' seeks to fulfill such a prioritization role. We propose that the potential for biodiversity informatics be assessed through three concepts: (a) the intrinsic biodiversity potential (the biological richness or ecological diversity) of a country; (b) the capacity of the country to generate biodiversity data records; and (c) the availability of technical infrastructure in a country for managing and publishing such records. Methods Broadly, the techniques used to construct the BIP Index were rank correlation, multiple regression analysis, principal components analysis and optimization by linear programming. We built the BIP Index by finding a parsimonious set of country-level human, economic and environmental variables that best predicted the availability of primary biodiversity data accessible through the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) network, and constructing an optimized model with these variables. The model was then applied to all countries for which sufficient data existed, to obtain a score for each country. Countries were ranked according to that score. Results Many of the current GBIF participants ranked highly in the BIP Index, although some of them seemed not to have realized their biodiversity informatics potential. The BIP Index attributed low ranking to most non-participant countries; however, a few of them scored highly, suggesting that these would be high-return new participants if encouraged to contribute towards the GBIF mission of free and open access to biodiversity data. Conclusions The BIP Index could potentially help in (a) identifying countries most likely to

  2. A systematic review on the contributions of edible plant and animal biodiversity to human diets.

    PubMed

    Penafiel, Daniela; Lachat, Carl; Espinel, Ramon; Van Damme, Patrick; Kolsteren, Patrick

    2011-09-01

    The sustainable use of natural and agricultural biodiversity in the diet can be instrumental to preserve existing food biodiversity, address malnutrition, and mitigate adverse effects of dietary changes worldwide. This systematic review of literature summarizes the current evidence on the contribution of plant and animal biodiversity to human diets in terms of energy intake, micronutrient intake, and dietary diversification. Peer-reviewed studies were searched in ten databases using pre-defined search terms. Only original studies assessing food biodiversity and dietary intake were included, resulting in a total of 34 studies. 7, 14, and 17 studies reported information in relation to energy intake, micronutrient intake, and dietary diversification, respectively. In general, locally available foods were found to be important sources of energy, micronutrients, and dietary diversification in the diet of particularly rural and forest communities of highly biodiverse ecosystems. The current evidence shows local food biodiversity as important contributor of nutritious diets. Findings are, however, limited to populations living in highly biodiverse areas. Research on the contribution of biodiversity in diets of industrialized and urban settings needs more attention. Instruments are needed that would more appropriately measure the dietary contribution of local biodiversity.

  3. Biodiversity: modelling angiosperms as networks.

    PubMed

    Gottlieb, O R; Borin, M R

    2000-11-01

    In the neotropics, one of the last biological frontiers, the major ecological concern should not involve local strategies, but global effects often responsible for irreparable damage. For a holistic approach, angiosperms are ideal model systems dominating most land areas of the present world in an astonishing variety of form and function. Recognition of biogeographical patterns requires new methodologies and entails several questions, such as their nature, dynamics and mechanism. Demographical patterns of families, modelled via species dominance, reveal the existence of South American angiosperm networks converging at the central Brazilian plateau. Biodiversity of habitats, measured via taxonomic uniqueness, reveal higher creative power at this point of convergence than in more peripheral regions. Compositional affinities of habitats, measured via bioconnectivity, reveal the decisive role of ecotones in the exchange or redistribution of information, energy and organisms among the ecosystems. Forming dynamic boundaries, ecotones generate and relay evolutionary novelty, and integrate all neotropical ecosystems into a single vegetation net. Connectivity in such plant webs may depend on mycorrhizal links. If sufficiently general such means of metabolic transfer will require revision of the chemical composition of many plants.

  4. BK Channels Localize to the Paranodal Junction and Regulate Action Potentials in Myelinated Axons of Cerebellar Purkinje Cells

    PubMed Central

    Hirono, Moritoshi; Ogawa, Yasuhiro; Misono, Kaori; Zollinger, Daniel R.; Trimmer, James S.

    2015-01-01

    In myelinated axons, K+ channels are clustered in distinct membrane domains to regulate action potentials (APs). At nodes of Ranvier, Kv7 channels are expressed with Na+ channels, whereas Kv1 channels flank nodes at juxtaparanodes. Regulation of axonal APs by K+ channels would be particularly important in fast-spiking projection neurons such as cerebellar Purkinje cells. Here, we show that BK/Slo1 channels are clustered at the paranodal junctions of myelinated Purkinje cell axons of rat and mouse. The paranodal junction is formed by a set of cell-adhesion molecules, including Caspr, between the node and juxtaparanodes in which it separates nodal from internodal membrane domains. Remarkably, only Purkinje cell axons have detectable paranodal BK channels, whose clustering requires the formation of the paranodal junction via Caspr. Thus, BK channels occupy this unique domain in Purkinje cell axons along with the other K+ channel complexes at nodes and juxtaparanodes. To investigate the physiological role of novel paranodal BK channels, we examined the effect of BK channel blockers on antidromic AP conduction. We found that local application of blockers to the axon resulted in a significant increase in antidromic AP failure at frequencies above 100 Hz. We also found that Ni2+ elicited a similar effect on APs, indicating the involvement of Ni2+-sensitive Ca2+ channels. Furthermore, axonal application of BK channel blockers decreased the inhibitory synaptic response in the deep cerebellar nuclei. Thus, paranodal BK channels uniquely support high-fidelity firing of APs in myelinated Purkinje cell axons, thereby underpinning the output of the cerebellar cortex. PMID:25948259

  5. Femur bone repair in ovariectomized rats under the local action of alendronate, hydroxyapatite and the association of alendronate and hydroxyapatite

    PubMed Central

    Canettieri, Antonio Carlos Victor; Colombo, Carlos Eduardo Dias; Chin, Chung Man; Faig-Leite, Horácio

    2009-01-01

    An evaluation was made of the local action of alendronate sodium (A), hydroxyapatite (HA) and the association of both substances (A + HA), in different molar concentrations, on the femur bone repair of ovariectomized rats. Ninety-eight animals were divided into seven groups: control (C), starch (S), alendronate 1 mol (A1), alendronate 2 mols (A2), hydroxyapatite 1 mol (HA1), hydroxyapatite 2 mols (HA2) and the association of alendronate + hydroxyapatite (A + HA). Rats weighing about 250 g were ovariectomized and 2.5-mm diameter bone defects were made on the left femur 30 days later. Each experimental group had defects filled with appropriate material, except for group C (control). The animals were killed 7 and 21 days after surgery. Histological, histomorphometric and statistical analyses of bone neoformation in the bone defect site were performed. From the histological standpoint, the major differences occurred after 21 days. All specimens in groups C, S, HA1 and HA2 presented linear closure of the bone defect, and most animals in groups A1, A2 and A + HA showed no bone neoformation in the central area of the defect. No statistically significant difference was found among the experimental groups after 7 days; after 21 days, group HA2 presented the highest amount of neoformed bone. There was no significant difference among groups A1, A2 and A + HA in the two study periods. It was concluded that alendronate, either isolated or in association with hydroxyapatite, had an adverse effect on bone repair in this experimental model. Moreover, the hydroxyapatite used here proved to be biocompatible and osteoconductive, with group HA2 showing the best results. PMID:19765106

  6. Urban biodiversity: patterns and mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Faeth, Stanley H; Bang, Christofer; Saari, Susanna

    2011-03-01

    The patterns of biodiversity changes in cities are now fairly well established, although diversity changes in temperate cities are much better studied than cities in other climate zones. Generally, plant species richness often increases in cities due to importation of exotic species, whereas animal species richness declines. Abundances of some groups, especially birds and arthropods, often increase in urban areas despite declines in species richness. Although several models have been proposed for biodiversity change, the processes underlying the patterns of biodiversity in cities are poorly understood. We argue that humans directly control plants but relatively few animals and microbes-the remaining biological community is determined by this plant "template" upon which natural ecological and evolutionary processes act. As a result, conserving or reconstructing natural habitats defined by vegetation within urban areas is no guarantee that other components of the biological community will follow suit. Understanding the human-controlled and natural processes that alter biodiversity is essential for conserving urban biodiversity. This urban biodiversity will comprise a growing fraction of the world's repository of biodiversity in the future.

  7. The Importance of Microhabitat for Biodiversity Sampling

    PubMed Central

    Mehrabi, Zia; Slade, Eleanor M.; Solis, Angel; Mann, Darren J.

    2014-01-01

    Responses to microhabitat are often neglected when ecologists sample animal indicator groups. Microhabitats may be particularly influential in non-passive biodiversity sampling methods, such as baited traps or light traps, and for certain taxonomic groups which respond to fine scale environmental variation, such as insects. Here we test the effects of microhabitat on measures of species diversity, guild structure and biomass of dung beetles, a widely used ecological indicator taxon. We demonstrate that choice of trap placement influences dung beetle functional guild structure and species diversity. We found that locally measured environmental variables were unable to fully explain trap-based differences in species diversity metrics or microhabitat specialism of functional guilds. To compare the effects of habitat degradation on biodiversity across multiple sites, sampling protocols must be standardized and scale-relevant. Our work highlights the importance of considering microhabitat scale responses of indicator taxa and designing robust sampling protocols which account for variation in microhabitats during trap placement. We suggest that this can be achieved either through standardization of microhabitat or through better efforts to record relevant environmental variables that can be incorporated into analyses to account for microhabitat effects. This is especially important when rapidly assessing the consequences of human activity on biodiversity loss and associated ecosystem function and services. PMID:25469770

  8. Rapid acoustic survey for biodiversity appraisal.

    PubMed

    Sueur, Jérôme; Pavoine, Sandrine; Hamerlynck, Olivier; Duvail, Stéphanie

    2008-01-01

    Biodiversity assessment remains one of the most difficult challenges encountered by ecologists and conservation biologists. This task is becoming even more urgent with the current increase of habitat loss. Many methods-from rapid biodiversity assessments (RBA) to all-taxa biodiversity inventories (ATBI)-have been developed for decades to estimate local species richness. However, these methods are costly and invasive. Several animals-birds, mammals, amphibians, fishes and arthropods-produce sounds when moving, communicating or sensing their environment. Here we propose a new concept and method to describe biodiversity. We suggest to forego species or morphospecies identification used by ATBI and RBA respectively but rather to tackle the problem at another evolutionary unit, the community level. We also propose that a part of diversity can be estimated and compared through a rapid acoustic analysis of the sound produced by animal communities. We produced alpha and beta diversity indexes that we first tested with 540 simulated acoustic communities. The alpha index, which measures acoustic entropy, shows a logarithmic correlation with the number of species within the acoustic community. The beta index, which estimates both temporal and spectral dissimilarities, is linearly linked to the number of unshared species between acoustic communities. We then applied both indexes to two closely spaced Tanzanian dry lowland coastal forests. Indexes reveal for this small sample a lower acoustic diversity for the most disturbed forest and acoustic dissimilarities between the two forests suggest that degradation could have significantly decreased and modified community composition. Our results demonstrate for the first time that an indicator of biological diversity can be reliably obtained in a non-invasive way and with a limited sampling effort. This new approach may facilitate the appraisal of animal diversity at large spatial and temporal scales.

  9. Loss of native rocky reef biodiversity in Australian metropolitan embayments.

    PubMed

    Stuart-Smith, Rick D; Edgar, Graham J; Stuart-Smith, Jemina F; Barrett, Neville S; Fowles, Amelia E; Hill, Nicole A; Cooper, Antonia T; Myers, Andrew P; Oh, Elizabeth S; Pocklington, Jacqui B; Thomson, Russell J

    2015-06-15

    Urbanisation of the coastal zone represents a key threat to marine biodiversity, including rocky reef communities which often possess disproportionate ecological, recreational and commercial importance. The nature and magnitude of local urban impacts on reef biodiversity near three Australian capital cities were quantified using visual census methods. The most impacted reefs in urbanised embayments were consistently characterised by smaller, faster growing species, reduced fish biomass and richness, and reduced mobile invertebrate abundance and richness. Reef faunal distribution varied significantly with heavy metals, local population density, and proximity to city ports, while native fish and invertebrate communities were most depauperate in locations where invasive species were abundant. Our study adds impetus for improved urban planning and pollution management practises, while also highlighting the potential for skilled volunteers to improve the tracking of changes in marine biodiversity values and the effectiveness of management intervention.

  10. How Zoos Are Meeting the Challenges Facing Biodiversity: Bristol Zoo Gardens as a Case Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Garrett, Simon

    2010-01-01

    As ideas about effective conservation of biodiversity develop, zoos are adapting their roles to meet the new challenges. This article considers these changes, using the work of Bristol and other UK zoos as a case study. The significance of zoos in both global and local conservation of biodiversity, their role in promoting public engagement and…

  11. Expressing the sense of the Congress that State and local governments should be supported for taking actions to discourage illegal immigration and that legislation should be enacted to ease the burden on State and local governments for taking such actions.

    THOMAS, 111th Congress

    Rep. Poe, Ted [R-TX-2

    2009-01-09

    02/09/2009 Referred to the Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship, Refugees, Border Security, and International Law. (All Actions) Tracker: This bill has the status IntroducedHere are the steps for Status of Legislation:

  12. Economic Inequality Predicts Biodiversity Loss

    PubMed Central

    Mikkelson, Gregory M.; Gonzalez, Andrew; Peterson, Garry D.

    2007-01-01

    Human activity is causing high rates of biodiversity loss. Yet, surprisingly little is known about the extent to which socioeconomic factors exacerbate or ameliorate our impacts on biological diversity. One such factor, economic inequality, has been shown to affect public health, and has been linked to environmental problems in general. We tested how strongly economic inequality is related to biodiversity loss in particular. We found that among countries, and among US states, the number of species that are threatened or declining increases substantially with the Gini ratio of income inequality. At both levels of analysis, the connection between income inequality and biodiversity loss persists after controlling for biophysical conditions, human population size, and per capita GDP or income. Future research should explore potential mechanisms behind this equality-biodiversity relationship. Our results suggest that economic reforms would go hand in hand with, if not serving as a prerequisite for, effective conservation. PMID:17505535

  13. Fungal biodiversity to biotechnology.

    PubMed

    Chambergo, Felipe S; Valencia, Estela Y

    2016-03-01

    Fungal habitats include soil, water, and extreme environments. With around 100,000 fungus species already described, it is estimated that 5.1 million fungus species exist on our planet, making fungi one of the largest and most diverse kingdoms of eukaryotes. Fungi show remarkable metabolic features due to a sophisticated genomic network and are important for the production of biotechnological compounds that greatly impact our society in many ways. In this review, we present the current state of knowledge on fungal biodiversity, with special emphasis on filamentous fungi and the most recent discoveries in the field of identification and production of biotechnological compounds. More than 250 fungus species have been studied to produce these biotechnological compounds. This review focuses on three of the branches generally accepted in biotechnological applications, which have been identified by a color code: red, green, and white for pharmaceutical, agricultural, and industrial biotechnology, respectively. We also discuss future prospects for the use of filamentous fungi in biotechnology application.

  14. Multi-scale marine biodiversity patterns inferred efficiently from habitat image processing.

    PubMed

    Mellin, Camille; Parrott, Lael; Andréfouët, Serge; Bradshaw, Corey J A; MacNeil, M Aaron; Caley, M Julian

    2012-04-01

    Cost-effective proxies of biodiversity and species abundance, applicable across a range of spatial scales, are needed for setting conservation priorities and planning action. We outline a rapid, efficient, and low-cost measure of spectral signal from digital habitat images that, being an effective proxy for habitat complexity, correlates with species diversity and requires little image processing or interpretation. We validated this method for coral reefs of the Great Barrier Reef (GBR), Australia, across a range of spatial scales (1 m to 10 km), using digital photographs of benthic communities at the transect scale and high-resolution Landsat satellite images at the reef scale. We calculated an index of image-derived spatial heterogeneity, the mean information gain (MIG), for each scale and related it to univariate (species richness and total abundance summed across species) and multivariate (species abundance matrix) measures of fish community structure, using two techniques that account for the hierarchical structure of the data: hierarchical (mixed-effect) linear models and distance-based partial redundancy analysis. Over the length and breadth of the GBR, MIG alone explained up to 29% of deviance in fish species richness, 33% in total fish abundance, and 25% in fish community structure at multiple scales, thus demonstrating the possibility of easily and rapidly exploiting spatial information contained in digital images to complement existing methods for inferring diversity and abundance patterns among fish communities. Thus, the spectral signal of unprocessed remotely sensed images provides an efficient and low-cost way to optimize the design of surveys used in conservation planning. In data-sparse situations, this simple approach also offers a viable method for rapid assessment of potential local biodiversity, particularly where there is little local capacity in terms of skills or resources for mounting in-depth biodiversity surveys.

  15. Diversity, biodiversity, conservation, and sustainability.

    PubMed

    Marques, J C

    2001-10-11

    The concepts of diversity and biodiversity are analysed regarding their historical emergence, and their intrinsic meaning and differences are discussed. Through a brief synopsis, difficulties usually experienced by statisticians in capturing the dynamics of diversity are analysed and main problems identified. The shift from diversity to the more holistic biodiversity as a working concept is appraised in terms of the novelty involved. Through a number of examples, the way the two concepts capture natural cyclic changes is analysed, and their reciprocal and complementary relations are approached theoretically. The way diversity could develop from the stores of biodiversity as its active expression through selective and evolutionary processes is described. Through the use of a very simple dynamic model, the concepts of diversity and biodiversity are analysed in extremely opposite hypothetical scenarios. Comparisons with natural situations are made and the theoretical implications from the conservation point of view are discussed. These support the opinion that conservation undertaken in restricted and protected areas is not self-sustainable, needing permanent external intervention to regulate internal processes, and in the long run will most probably lead in the direction of obsolescence and extinction. Finally, the relations between diversity, biodiversity, and sustainability are approached. The vagueness of the sustainability concept is discussed. Preservation of biodiversity is then defended as one of the best available indicators to assist us in fixing boundaries which may help to provide a more precise definition of sustainability.

  16. Wildfire risk for main vegetation units in a biodiversity hotspot: modeling approach in New Caledonia, South Pacific

    PubMed Central

    Gomez, Céline; Mangeas, Morgan; Curt, Thomas; Ibanez, Thomas; Munzinger, Jérôme; Dumas, Pascal; Jérémy, André; Despinoy, Marc; Hély, Christelle

    2015-01-01

    Wildfire has been recognized as one of the most ubiquitous disturbance agents to impact on natural environments. In this study, our main objective was to propose a modeling approach to investigate the potential impact of wildfire on biodiversity. The method is illustrated with an application example in New Caledonia where conservation and sustainable biodiversity management represent an important challenge. Firstly, a biodiversity loss index, including the diversity and the vulnerability indexes, was calculated for every vegetation unit in New Caledonia and mapped according to its distribution over the New Caledonian mainland. Then, based on spatially explicit fire behavior simulations (using the FLAMMAP software) and fire ignition probabilities, two original fire risk assessment approaches were proposed: a one-off event model and a multi-event burn probability model. The spatial distribution of fire risk across New Caledonia was similar for both indices with very small localized spots having high risk. The patterns relating to highest risk are all located around the remaining sclerophyll forest fragments and are representing 0.012% of the mainland surface. A small part of maquis and areas adjacent to dense humid forest on ultramafic substrates should also be monitored. Vegetation interfaces between secondary and primary units displayed high risk and should represent priority zones for fire effects mitigation. Low fire ignition probability in anthropogenic-free areas decreases drastically the risk. A one-off event associated risk allowed localizing of the most likely ignition areas with potential for extensive damage. Emergency actions could aim limiting specific fire spread known to have high impact or consist of on targeting high risk areas to limit one-off fire ignitions. Spatially explicit information on burning probability is necessary for setting strategic fire and fuel management planning. Both risk indices provide clues to preserve New Caledonia hot spot of

  17. Understanding marine biodiversity: A research agenda for the nation

    SciTech Connect

    1995-05-01

    Propelled by the need for understanding changes in marine biodiversity resulting from human activities, this proposed research Program calls for ecological and oceanographic research spanning a broad range of spatial scales, from local to much larger regional, and over appropriately long time scales for capturing the dynamics of the system under study. The research agenda proposes a fundamental change in the approach by which biodiversity is measured and studied in the ocean by emphasizing integrated regional-scale research strategies within an environmentally relevant and socially responsible framework. This is now possible because of recent technological and conceptual advances within the ecological, molecular, and oceanographic sciences. A major goal of this research is to improve predictions of the effects of the human population on the diversity of life in the sea, in order to improve conservation and management plans. A well-defined set of biodiversity research questions is proposed for study in several different types of regional-scale marine ecosystems. These studies will permit meaningful comparisons across different habitats of the causes and consequences of changes in biodiversity due to human activities. This agenda requires significant advances in taxonomic expertise for identifying marine organisms and documenting their distributions, in knowledge of local and regional natural Patterns of biodiversity, and in understanding of the processes that create and maintain these patterns in space and time. Thus, this program could provide longawaited, much-needed, and exciting opportunities to develop the interface between taxonomy and ecology and between the ecological and oceanographic sciences.

  18. Analysis of Reptile Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services within ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    A focus for resource management, conservation planning, and environmental decision analysis has been mapping and quantifying biodiversity and ecosystem services. The challenge has been to integrate ecology with economics to better understand the effects of human policies and actions and their subsequent impacts on human well-being and ecosystem function. Biodiversity is valued by humans in varied ways, and thus is an important input to include in assessing the benefits of ecosystems to humans. Some biodiversity metrics more clearly reflect ecosystem services (e.g., game species, threatened and endangered species), whereas others may indicate indirect and difficult to quantify relationships to services (e.g., taxa richness and cultural value). In the present study, we identify and map reptile biodiversity and ecosystem services metrics. The importance of reptiles to biodiversity and ecosystems services is not often described. We used species distribution models for reptiles in the conterminous United States from the U.S. Geological Survey’s Gap Analysis Program. We focus on species richness metrics including all reptile species richness, taxa groupings of lizards, snakes and turtles, NatureServe conservation status (G1, G2, G3) species, IUCN listed reptiles, threatened and endangered species, Partners in Amphibian and Reptile Conservation listed reptiles, and rare species. These metrics were analyzed with the Protected Areas Database of the United States to

  19. Marine biodiversity characteristics.

    PubMed

    Boeuf, Gilles

    2011-05-01

    Oceans contain the largest living volume of the "blue" planet, inhabited by approximately 235-250,000 described species, all groups included. They only represent some 13% of the known species on the Earth, but the marine biomasses are really huge. Marine phytoplankton alone represents half the production of organic matter on Earth while marine bacteria represent more than 10%. Life first appeared in the oceans more than 3.8 billion years ago and several determining events took place that changed the course of life, ranging from the development of the cell nucleus to sexual reproduction going through multi-cellular organisms and the capture of organelles. Of the 31 animal phyla currently listed, 12 are exclusively marine phyla and have never left the ocean. An interesting question is to try to understand why there are so few marine species versus land species? This pattern of distribution seems pretty recent in the course of Evolution. From an exclusively marine world, since the beginning until 440 million years ago, land number of species much increased 110 million years ago. Specific diversity and ancestral roles, in addition to organizational models and original behaviors, have made marine organisms excellent reservoirs for identifying and extracting molecules (>15,000 today) with pharmacological potential. They also make particularly relevant models for both fundamental and applied research. Some marine models have been the source of essential discoveries in life sciences. From this diversity, the ocean provides humankind with renewable resources, which are highly threatened today and need more adequate management to preserve ocean habitats, stocks and biodiversity.

  20. Landscape moderation of biodiversity patterns and processes - eight hypotheses

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Understanding how landscape characteristics affect local biodiversity patterns and ecological processes is critical for mitigating effects of global environmental change. In this review, we use knowledge gained from human-modified landscapes to suggest the following seven hypotheses, which we hope w...

  1. Facilitation as a ubiquitous driver of biodiversity.

    PubMed

    McIntire, Eliot J B; Fajardo, Alex

    2014-01-01

    Models describing the biotic drivers that create and maintain biological diversity within trophic levels have focused primarily on negative interactions (i.e. competition), leaving marginal room for positive interactions (i.e. facilitation). We show facilitation to be a ubiquitous driver of biodiversity by first noting that all species use resources and thus change the local biotic or abiotic conditions, altering the available multidimensional niches. This can cause a shift in local species composition, which can cause an increase in beta, and sometimes alpha, diversity. We show that these increases are ubiquitous across ecosystems. These positive effects on diversity occur via a broad host of disparate direct and indirect mechanisms. We identify and unify several of these facilitative mechanisms and discuss why it has been easy to underappreciate the importance of facilitation. We show that net positive effects have a long history of being considered ecologically or evolutionarily unstable, and we present recent evidence of its potential stability. Facilitation goes well beyond the common case of stress amelioration and it probably gains importance as community complexity increases. While biodiversity is, in part, created by species exploiting many niches, many niches are available to exploit only because species create them.

  2. Biodiversity informatics: managing and applying primary biodiversity data.

    PubMed

    Soberón, Jorge; Peterson, A Townsend

    2004-04-29

    Recently, advances in information technology and an increased willingness to share primary biodiversity data are enabling unprecedented access to it. By combining presences of species data with electronic cartography via a number of algorithms, estimating niches of species and their areas of distribution becomes feasible at resolutions one to three orders of magnitude higher than it was possible a few years ago. Some examples of the power of that technique are presented. For the method to work, limitations such as lack of high-quality taxonomic determination, precise georeferencing of the data and availability of high-quality and updated taxonomic treatments of the groups must be overcome. These are discussed, together with comments on the potential of these biodiversity informatics techniques not only for fundamental studies but also as a way for developing countries to apply state of the art bioinformatic methods and large quantities of data, in practical ways, to tackle issues of biodiversity management.

  3. Directory of guidance documents relating to biodiversity and cultural knowledge research and prospecting

    SciTech Connect

    Churcher, T. |

    1997-06-01

    Biodiversity in both developing and developed countries has been accessed for a long time by local communities as well as by outside researchers and corporate prospectors. Such activities are carried out for various purposes. Sometimes plants, animals and habitats are merely described, other times the goal is to extract for profit. These activities have helped to advance knowledge and create awareness of how precious biodiversity is. These activities have also generated many products that contribute to the health and well-being of global consumers, but may not necessarily provide benefits to their original stewards. Research has also focused attention on particular features of biodiversity. Biodiversity has been conserved, both by local community traditions, and by more formal means, with varying degree of effectiveness. One recently proposed means is the Convention on Biological Diversity. That convention has been ratified by large number of countries and has stimulated global concern over this issue. It has provided a framework for conserving biodiversity. At the same time many local communities, NGOs and people`s organizations are advancing alternative ways to conserve biodiversity and cultural diversity. In many places, the conservation of biodiversity and the protection of cultural diversity are inescapably intertwined. Despite strong links between biodiversity and the land and the water management traditions of the 6000 linguistically distinct cultures, the Convention on Biological Diversity focuses on nation-state sovereignty over biodiversity. We believe that local communities should have greater say in whether and how biodiversity is studied, extracted and commercialized. We consider prior informed consent to be a necessary requirement of such explorations, as is equitable sharing of any benefits arising from them.

  4. Functional consequences of realistic biodiversity changes in a marine ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Bracken, Matthew E S; Friberg, Sara E; Gonzalez-Dorantes, Cirse A; Williams, Susan L

    2008-01-22

    Declines in biodiversity have prompted concern over the consequences of species loss for the goods and services provided by natural ecosystems. However, relatively few studies have evaluated the functional consequences of realistic, nonrandom changes in biodiversity. Instead, most designs have used randomly selected assemblages from a local species pool to construct diversity gradients. It is therefore difficult, based on current evidence, to predict the functional consequences of realistic declines in biodiversity. In this study, we used tide pool microcosms to demonstrate that the effects of real-world changes in biodiversity may be very different from those of random diversity changes. Specifically, we measured the relationship between the diversity of a seaweed assemblage and its ability to use nitrogen, a key limiting nutrient in nearshore marine systems. We quantified nitrogen uptake using both experimental and model seaweed assemblages and found that natural increases in diversity resulted in enhanced rates of nitrogen use, whereas random diversity changes had no effect on nitrogen uptake. Our results suggest that understanding the real-world consequences of declining biodiversity will require addressing changes in species performance along natural diversity gradients and understanding the relationships between species' susceptibility to loss and their contributions to ecosystem functioning.

  5. Biodiversity of the Pantanal: response to seasonal flooding regime and to environmental degradation.

    PubMed

    Alho, C J R

    2008-11-01

    Seasonal flooding is the most important ecological phenomenon in the Pantanal. Every year many parts of the biome change from terrestrial into aquatic habitats and vice-versa. The degree of inundation creates a range of major habitats. Flooding occupies about 80% of the whole Pantanal. In contrast, during the dry season, most of the flooded areas stay dry, when the water returns to the river beds or evaporates. The Pantanal is a large continental savanna wetland (147,574 km(2) in Brazil), touching Bolivia to the north and Paraguay to the south. The maze of fluctuating water levels, nutrients, and biota forms a dynamic ecosystem. The vegetation comprises 1,863 phanerogam plant species listed for the floodplain and 3,400 for the whole basin and 250 species of aquatic plants. The complex vegetation cover and seasonal productivity support a diverse and abundant fauna within the floodplain: 263 species of fish, 41 of amphibians, 113 of reptiles (177 for the basin), 463 of birds and 132 mammal species. Many endangered species occur, including jaguar (Panthera onca Linnaeus, 1758). Waterfowl are exceptionally abundant during the dry season. Analysis of the root causes of the threats to biodiversity indicated that deforestation (17% of the Pantanal and 63% of the surrounding uplands) with modification and loss of natural habitats due to cattle ranching, unsustainable agriculture, mining, environmental contamination (including mercury, pesticides, urban sewage), non organized tourism, fire, disturbances at the upstream region modifying hydrological flow, erosion, weak implementation and enforcement of legislation are the major issues to face conservation action and sustainable use. Under an evolutionary focus, local biodiversity seems to be well adapted to seasonal shrinking and expansion of natural habitats due to flooding. However, the conversion of natural vegetation due to human occupation is a real threat to biodiversity.

  6. Understanding Continental Margin Biodiversity: A New Imperative

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levin, Lisa A.; Sibuet, Myriam

    2012-01-01

    Until recently, the deep continental margins (200-4,000 m) were perceived as monotonous mud slopes of limited ecological or environmental concern. Progress in seafloor mapping and direct observation now reveals unexpected heterogeneity, with a mosaic of habitats and ecosystems linked to geomorphological, geochemical, and hydrographic features that influence biotic diversity. Interactions among water masses, terrestrial inputs, sediment diagenesis, and tectonic activity create a multitude of ecological settings supporting distinct communities that populate canyons and seamounts, high-stress oxygen minimum zones, and methane seeps, as well as vast reefs of cold corals and sponges. This high regional biodiversity is fundamental to the production of valuable fisheries, energy, and mineral resources, and performs critical ecological services (nutrient cycling, carbon sequestration, nursery and habitat support). It is under significant threat from climate change and human resource extraction activities. Serious actions are required to preserve the functions and services provided by the deep-sea settings we are just now getting to know.

  7. Understanding continental margin biodiversity: a new imperative.

    PubMed

    Levin, Lisa A; Sibuet, Myriam

    2012-01-01

    Until recently, the deep continental margins (200-4,000 m) were perceived as monotonous mud slopes of limited ecological or environmental concern. Progress in seafloor mapping and direct observation now reveals unexpected heterogeneity, with a mosaic of habitats and ecosystems linked to geomorphological, geochemical, and hydrographic features that influence biotic diversity. Interactions among water masses, terrestrial inputs, sediment diagenesis, and tectonic activity create a multitude of ecological settings supporting distinct communities that populate canyons and seamounts, high-stress oxygen minimum zones, and methane seeps, as well as vast reefs of cold corals and sponges. This high regional biodiversity is fundamental to the production of valuable fisheries, energy, and mineral resources, and performs critical ecological services (nutrient cycling, carbon sequestration, nursery and habitat support). It is under significant threat from climate change and human resource extraction activities. Serious actions are required to preserve the functions and services provided by the deep-sea settings we are just now getting to know.

  8. Forecasted coral reef decline in marine biodiversity hotspots under climate change.

    PubMed

    Descombes, Patrice; Wisz, Mary S; Leprieur, Fabien; Parravicini, Valerianio; Heine, Christian; Olsen, Steffen M; Swingedouw, Didier; Kulbicki, Michel; Mouillot, David; Pellissier, Loïc

    2015-01-21

    Coral bleaching events threaten coral reef habitats globally and cause severe declines of local biodiversity and productivity. Related to high sea surface temperatures (SST), bleaching events are expected to increase as a consequence of future global warming. However, response to climate change is still uncertain as future low-latitude climatic conditions have no present-day analogue. Sea surface temperatures during the Eocene epoch were warmer than forecasted changes for the coming century, and distributions of corals during the Eocene may help to inform models forecasting the future of coral reefs. We coupled contemporary and Eocene coral occurrences with information on their respective climatic conditions to model the thermal niche of coral reefs and its potential response to projected climate change. We found that under the RCP8.5 climate change scenario, the global suitability for coral reefs may increase up to 16% by 2100, mostly due to improved suitability of higher latitudes. In contrast, in its current range, coral reef suitability may decrease up to 46% by 2100. Reduction in thermal suitability will be most severe in biodiversity hotspots, especially in the Indo-Australian Archipelago. Our results suggest that many contemporary hotspots for coral reefs, including those that have been refugia in the past, spatially mismatch with future suitable areas for coral reefs posing challenges to conservation actions under climate change.

  9. Epinephrine as adjuvant for propranolol produces a marked peripheral action in intensifying and prolonging analgesia in response to local dorsal cutaneous noxious pinprick in rats.

    PubMed

    Tzeng, Jann-Inn; Pan, He-Jia; Liu, Kuo-Sheng; Chen, Yu-Wen; Chen, Yu-Chung; Wang, Jhi-Joung

    2014-10-05

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of epinephrine as additive for propranolol as an infiltrative anesthetic. Using a rat model of cutaneous trunci muscle reflex (CTMR), we tested the effect of co-administration of epinephrine with propranolol on infiltrative cutaneous analgesia. Bupivacaine, a long-lasting local anesthetic, was used as control. Subcutaneous propranolol and bupivacaine elicited a dose-dependent local anesthetic effect on infiltrative cutaneous analgesia. On the 50% effective dose (ED50) basis, the relative potency was bupivacaine [2.05 (1.95-2.21) μmol/kg]>propranolol [9.21 (9.08-9.42) μmol/kg] (P<0.01 for each comparison). Subcutaneous epinephrine (0.012 μmol/kg) did not produce cutaneous analgesia. Mixtures of epinephrine (0.012 μmol/kg) with drugs (propranolol or bupivacaine) at ED50 or ED95, respectively, intensified and prolonged drug action on infiltrative cutaneous analgesia. Intraperitoneal injection of combined drugs (propranolol or bupivacaine) at ED95 with epinephrine (0.012 μmol/kg) exhibited no cutaneous analgesia. We concluded that propranolol was less potent but produced a similar duration of action when compared to bupivacaine on infiltrative cutaneous analgesia. Epinephrine as adjuvant for propranolol or bupivacaine enhanced the potency and extended the duration of action on infiltrative cutaneous analgesia.

  10. Global biodiversity monitoring: from data sources to essential biodiversity variables

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Proenca, Vania; Martin, Laura J.; Pereira, Henrique M.; Fernandez, Miguel; McRae, Louise; Belnap, Jayne; Böhm, Monika; Brummitt, Neil; Garcia-Moreno, Jaime; Gregory, Richard D.; Honrado, Joao P; Jürgens, Norbert; Opige, Michael; Schmeller, Dirk S.; Tiago, Patricia; van Sway, Chris A

    2016-01-01

    Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBVs) consolidate information from varied biodiversity observation sources. Here we demonstrate the links between data sources, EBVs and indicators and discuss how different sources of biodiversity observations can be harnessed to inform EBVs. We classify sources of primary observations into four types: extensive and intensive monitoring schemes, ecological field studies and satellite remote sensing. We characterize their geographic, taxonomic and temporal coverage. Ecological field studies and intensive monitoring schemes inform a wide range of EBVs, but the former tend to deliver short-term data, while the geographic coverage of the latter is limited. In contrast, extensive monitoring schemes mostly inform the population abundance EBV, but deliver long-term data across an extensive network of sites. Satellite remote sensing is particularly suited to providing information on ecosystem function and structure EBVs. Biases behind data sources may affect the representativeness of global biodiversity datasets. To improve them, researchers must assess data sources and then develop strategies to compensate for identified gaps. We draw on the population abundance dataset informing the Living Planet Index (LPI) to illustrate the effects of data sources on EBV representativeness. We find that long-term monitoring schemes informing the LPI are still scarce outside of Europe and North America and that ecological field studies play a key role in covering that gap. Achieving representative EBV datasets will depend both on the ability to integrate available data, through data harmonization and modeling efforts, and on the establishment of new monitoring programs to address critical data gaps.

  11. The Biodiversity Collection: A Review of Biodiversity Resources for Educators.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pitman, Barb; Braus, Judy; Asato, Lani

    This collection is designed to help educators find outstanding curricula, multimedia resources, and other educational materials that can enhance biodiversity teaching in a variety of settings. The curriculum materials were reviewed by teams comprised of classroom teachers, content experts, and environmental educators. The materials listed in this…

  12. Estimating impacts of plantation forestry on plant biodiversity in southern Chile-a spatially explicit modelling approach.

    PubMed

    Braun, Andreas Christian; Koch, Barbara

    2016-10-01

    Monitoring the impacts of land-use practices is of particular importance with regard to biodiversity hotspots in developing countries. Here, conserving the high level of unique biodiversity is challenged by limited possibilities for data collection on site. Especially for such scenarios, assisting biodiversity assessments by remote sensing has proven useful. Remote sensing techniques can be applied to interpolate between biodiversity assessments taken in situ. Through this approach, estimates of biodiversity for entire landscapes can be produced, relating land-use intensity to biodiversity conditions. Such maps are a valuable basis for developing biodiversity conservation plans. Several approaches have been published so far to interpolate local biodiversity assessments in remote sensing data. In the following, a new approach is proposed. Instead of inferring biodiversity using environmental variables or the variability of spectral values, a hypothesis-based approach is applied. Empirical knowledge about biodiversity in relation to land-use is formalized and applied as ascription rules for image data. The method is exemplified for a large study site (over 67,000 km(2)) in central Chile, where forest industry heavily impacts plant diversity. The proposed approach yields a coefficient of correlation of 0.73 and produces a convincing estimate of regional biodiversity. The framework is broad enough to be applied to other study sites.

  13. Assessing Undergraduate University Students' Level of Knowledge, Attitudes and Behaviour Towards Biodiversity: A case study in Cyprus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nisiforou, Olympia; Charalambides, Alexandros George

    2012-05-01

    Biodiversity is a key resource as it provides both goods and services to society. However, humans value these resources differently, especially when biodiversity is exploited for its economic potential; a destruction on a scale rarely seen before. In order to decrease the threats that biodiversity is facing due to human activity, globally (climate change) and locally (economic development), individuals must have fundamental knowledge and exhibit appropriate behaviour towards biodiversity and its values. Nevertheless, the effect of human's knowledge, policies and attitudes towards biodiversity's protection are often limited by insufficient education and public support. A balance between the use of resources and technology, reconciling economic development and the need to maintain biodiversity is a challenge. The current paper looks into the knowledge level, attitudes and behaviour of university students of the Department of Environmental Science and Technology at the Cyprus University of Technology towards biodiversity. The investigation was carried out using a closed format questionnaire on a sample of first- and second-year university students (n = 44), in order to access their perceptions and attitudes towards environmental issues regarding biodiversity. The questionnaire was derived from relevant literature. The test results showed that there are significant differences with regard to the level of knowledge about biodiversity between the two groups. However, no significant differences were found on attitudes and behaviour towards biodiversity. The results have also shown that all students have a positive attitude towards biodiversity, while on the other hand, they find themselves, most of the time, unwilling to engage in environmental behaviour.

  14. A decadal view of biodiversity informatics: challenges and priorities.

    PubMed

    Hardisty, Alex; Roberts, Dave; Addink, Wouter; Aelterman, Bart; Agosti, Donat; Amaral-Zettler, Linda; Ariño, Arturo H; Arvanitidis, Christos; Backeljau, Thierry; Bailly, Nicolas; Belbin, Lee; Berendsohn, Walter; Bertrand, Nic; Caithness, Neil; Campbell, David; Cochrane, Guy; Conruyt, Noël; Culham, Alastair; Damgaard, Christian; Davies, Neil; Fady, Bruno; Faulwetter, Sarah; Feest, Alan; Field, Dawn; Garnier, Eric; Geser, Guntram; Gilbert, Jack; Grosche; Grosser, David; Hardisty, Alex; Herbinet, Bénédicte; Hobern, Donald; Jones, Andrew; de Jong, Yde; King, David; Knapp, Sandra; Koivula, Hanna; Los, Wouter; Meyer, Chris; Morris, Robert A; Morrison, Norman; Morse, David; Obst, Matthias; Pafilis, Evagelos; Page, Larry M; Page, Roderic; Pape, Thomas; Parr, Cynthia; Paton, Alan; Patterson, David; Paymal, Elisabeth; Penev, Lyubomir; Pollet, Marc; Pyle, Richard; von Raab-Straube, Eckhard; Robert, Vincent; Roberts, Dave; Robertson, Tim; Rovellotti, Olivier; Saarenmaa, Hannu; Schalk, Peter; Schaminee, Joop; Schofield, Paul; Sier, Andy; Sierra, Soraya; Smith, Vince; van Spronsen, Edwin; Thornton-Wood, Simon; van Tienderen, Peter; van Tol, Jan; Tuama, Éamonn Ó; Uetz, Peter; Vaas, Lea; Vignes Lebbe, Régine; Vision, Todd; Vu, Duong; De Wever, Aaike; White, Richard; Willis, Kathy; Young, Fiona

    2013-04-15

    Biodiversity informatics plays a central enabling role in the research community's efforts to address scientific conservation and sustainability issues. Great strides have been made in the past decade establishing a framework for sharing data, where taxonomy and systematics has been perceived as the most prominent discipline involved. To some extent this is inevitable, given the use of species names as the pivot around which information is organised. To address the urgent questions around conservation, land-use, environmental change, sustainability, food security and ecosystem services that are facing Governments worldwide, we need to understand how the ecosystem works. So, we need a systems approach to understanding biodiversity that moves significantly beyond taxonomy and species observations. Such an approach needs to look at the whole system to address species interactions, both with their environment and with other species.It is clear that some barriers to progress are sociological, basically persuading people to use the technological solutions that are already available. This is best addressed by developing more effective systems that deliver immediate benefit to the user, hiding the majority of the technology behind simple user interfaces. An infrastructure should be a space in which activities take place and, as such, should be effectively invisible.This community consultation paper positions the role of biodiversity informatics, for the next decade, presenting the actions needed to link the various biodiversity infrastructures invisibly and to facilitate understanding that can support both business and policy-makers. The community considers the goal in biodiversity informatics to be full integration of the biodiversity research community, including citizens' science, through a commonly-shared, sustainable e-infrastructure across all sub-disciplines that reliably serves science and society alike.

  15. A decadal view of biodiversity informatics: challenges and priorities

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Biodiversity informatics plays a central enabling role in the research community's efforts to address scientific conservation and sustainability issues. Great strides have been made in the past decade establishing a framework for sharing data, where taxonomy and systematics has been perceived as the most prominent discipline involved. To some extent this is inevitable, given the use of species names as the pivot around which information is organised. To address the urgent questions around conservation, land-use, environmental change, sustainability, food security and ecosystem services that are facing Governments worldwide, we need to understand how the ecosystem works. So, we need a systems approach to understanding biodiversity that moves significantly beyond taxonomy and species observations. Such an approach needs to look at the whole system to address species interactions, both with their environment and with other species. It is clear that some barriers to progress are sociological, basically persuading people to use the technological solutions that are already available. This is best addressed by developing more effective systems that deliver immediate benefit to the user, hiding the majority of the technology behind simple user interfaces. An infrastructure should be a space in which activities take place and, as such, should be effectively invisible. This community consultation paper positions the role of biodiversity informatics, for the next decade, presenting the actions needed to link the various biodiversity infrastructures invisibly and to facilitate understanding that can support both business and policy-makers. The community considers the goal in biodiversity informatics to be full integration of the biodiversity research community, including citizens’ science, through a commonly-shared, sustainable e-infrastructure across all sub-disciplines that reliably serves science and society alike. PMID:23587026

  16. Enabled or Disabled: Is the Environment Right for Using Biodiversity to Improve Nutrition?

    PubMed Central

    Hunter, Danny; Özkan, Isa; Moura de Oliveira Beltrame, Daniela; Samarasinghe, Wellakke Lokuge Gamini; Wasike, Victor Wafula; Charrondière, U. Ruth; Borelli, Teresa; Sokolow, Jessica

    2016-01-01

    How can we ensure that 9 billion people will have access to a nutritious and healthy diet that is produced in a sustainable manner by 2050? Despite major advances, our global food system still fails to feed a significant part of humanity adequately. Diversifying food systems and diets to include nutrient-rich species can help reduce malnutrition, while contributing other multiple benefits including healthy ecosystems. While research continues to demonstrate the value of incorporating biodiversity into food systems and diets, perverse subsidies, and barriers often prevent this. Countries like Brazil have shown that, by strategic actions and interventions, it is indeed possible to create better contexts to mainstream biodiversity for improved nutrition into government programs and public policies. Despite some progress, there are few global and national policy mechanisms or processes that effectively join biodiversity with agriculture and nutrition efforts. This perspective paper discusses the benefits of biodiversity for nutrition and explores what an enabling environment for biodiversity to improve nutrition might look like, including examples of steps and actions from a multi-country project that other countries might replicate. Finally, we suggest what it might take to create enabling environments to mainstream biodiversity into global initiatives and national programs and policies on food and nutrition security. With demand for new thinking about how we improve agriculture for nutrition and growing international recognition of the role biodiversity, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development presents an opportunity to move beyond business-as-usual to more holistic approaches to food and nutrition security. PMID:27376067

  17. Enabled or Disabled: Is the Environment Right for Using Biodiversity to Improve Nutrition?

    PubMed

    Hunter, Danny; Özkan, Isa; Moura de Oliveira Beltrame, Daniela; Samarasinghe, Wellakke Lokuge Gamini; Wasike, Victor Wafula; Charrondière, U Ruth; Borelli, Teresa; Sokolow, Jessica

    2016-01-01

    How can we ensure that 9 billion people will have access to a nutritious and healthy diet that is produced in a sustainable manner by 2050? Despite major advances, our global food system still fails to feed a significant part of humanity adequately. Diversifying food systems and diets to include nutrient-rich species can help reduce malnutrition, while contributing other multiple benefits including healthy ecosystems. While research continues to demonstrate the value of incorporating biodiversity into food systems and diets, perverse subsidies, and barriers often prevent this. Countries like Brazil have shown that, by strategic actions and interventions, it is indeed possible to create better contexts to mainstream biodiversity for improved nutrition into government programs and public policies. Despite some progress, there are few global and national policy mechanisms or processes that effectively join biodiversity with agriculture and nutrition efforts. This perspective paper discusses the benefits of biodiversity for nutrition and explores what an enabling environment for biodiversity to improve nutrition might look like, including examples of steps and actions from a multi-country project that other countries might replicate. Finally, we suggest what it might take to create enabling environments to mainstream biodiversity into global initiatives and national programs and policies on food and nutrition security. With demand for new thinking about how we improve agriculture for nutrition and growing international recognition of the role biodiversity, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development presents an opportunity to move beyond business-as-usual to more holistic approaches to food and nutrition security.

  18. Central action of dendrotoxin: selective reduction of a transient K conductance in hippocampus and binding to localized acceptors.

    PubMed Central

    Halliwell, J V; Othman, I B; Pelchen-Matthews, A; Dolly, J O

    1986-01-01

    Dendrotoxin, a small single-chain protein from the venom of Dendroaspis angusticeps, is highly toxic following intracerebroventricular injection into rats. Voltage-clamp analysis of CA1 neurons in hippocampal slices, treated with tetrodotoxin, revealed that nanomolar concentrations of dendrotoxin reduce selectively a transient, voltage-dependent K conductance. Epileptiform activity known to be induced by dendrotoxin can be attributed to such an action. Membrane currents not affected directly by the toxin include (i) Ca-activated K conductance; (ii) noninactivating voltage-dependent K conductance; (iii) inactivating and noninactivating Ca conductances; (iv) persistent inward (anomalous) rectifier current. Persistence of the effects of the toxin when Cd was included to suppress spontaneous transmitter release indicates a direct action on the neuronal membrane. Using biologically active, 125I-labeled dendrotoxin, protein acceptor sites of high affinity were detected on cerebrocortical synaptosomal membranes and sections of rat brain. In hippocampus, toxin binding was shown autoradiographically to reside in synapse-rich and white matter regions, with lower levels in cell body layers. This acceptor is implicated in the action of toxin because its affinities for dendrotoxin congeners are proportional to their central neurotoxicities and potencies in reducing the transient, voltage-dependent K conductance. Images PMID:2417246

  19. Local Action Plans for Forest Fire Prevention in Greece: Existing situation and a Proposed Template based on the Collaboration of Academics and Public Policy Makers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Papanikolaou, Dimitrios; Arvanitakis, Spyridon; Papanikolaou, , Ioannis; Lozios, Stylianos; Diakakis, Michalis; Deligiannakis, Georgios; Dimitropoulou, Margarita; Georgiou, Konstantinos

    2013-04-01

    Wildfires are a major hazard in Greece suffering on average 1,509 wildfires and 36,151 burned hectares of forestlands every year. Since 1998 the Greek Fire Service is responsible for wildfires suppression and response, while prevention and mitigation yearly directives are also being released by the General Secretariat of Civil Protection. The 3013/2002 Act introduced a major transfer of responsibilities from the national to local municipal and regional authorities, which are accompanied by supplementary financial support. Significant new features were established such as the operation of local coordination councils, the foundation of municipality civil protection offices, the establishment of the annually prevention planning for forest fires and the development of local action plans. The University of Athens has developed a Local Action Plan template for municipality administrative levels, integrating scientific techniques and technologies to public government management. The Local Action Plan for Forest Fire Prevention is the main handbook and primary tool of every municipality for reducing the risk of wildfires. Fire prevention and risk analysis are the principal aims of this Plan, which also emphasizes on the important role of the volunteer organizations on forest fire prevention. The 7 chapters of the Action Plan include the legal framework, the risk analysis parameters, the risk analysis using GIS, the prevention planning, the manpower and available equipment of services involved, along with operational planning and evaluation of the previous year's forest fire prevention actions. Multiple information layers, such as vegetation types, road network, power lines and landfills are combined in GIS environment and transformed into qualitative multiparameter as well as quantitative combinational fire hazard maps. These maps are essential in wildfire risk analysis as they display the areas that need the highest attention during the fire season. Moreover, the separate

  20. PYCNOIB: Biodiversity and Biogeography of Iberian Pycnogonids

    PubMed Central

    Soler-Membrives, Anna; Munilla, Tomás

    2015-01-01

    Biodiversity and biogeographic studies comparing the distribution patterns of benthic marine organisms across the Iberian Atlantic and Mediterranean waters are scarce. The Pycnogonida (sea spiders) are a clear example of both endemicity and diversity, and are considered a key taxon to study and monitor biogeographic and biodiversity patterns. This is the first review that compiles data about abundance and diversity of Iberian pycnogonids and examines their biogeographic patterns and bathymetric constraints using GIS tools. A total of 17762 pycnogonid records from 343 localities were analyzed and were found to contain 65 species, 21 genera and 12 families. Achelia echinata and Ammothella longipes (family Acheliidae) were the most abundant comprising ~80% of the total records. The Acheliidae is also the most speciose in Iberian waters with 15 species. In contrast, the family Nymphonidae has 7 species but is significantly less abundant (<1% of the total records) than Acheliidae. Species accumulation curves indicate that further sampling would increase the number of Iberian species records. Current sampling effort suggests that the pycnogonid fauna of the Mediterranean region may be richer than that of the Atlantic. The Strait of Gibraltar and the Alboran Sea are recognized as species-rich areas that act as buffer zones between the Atlantic and Mediterranean boundaries. The deep waters surrounding the Iberian Peninsula are poorly surveyed, with only 15% of the sampling sites located below 1000 m. Further deep-water sampling is needed mainly on the Iberian Mediterranean side. PMID:25781483

  1. Biodiversity Conservation in the REDD

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Deforestation and forest degradation in the tropics is a major source of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The tropics also harbour more than half the world's threatened species, raising the possibility that reducing GHG emissions by curtailing tropical deforestation could provide substantial co-benefits for biodiversity conservation. Here we explore the potential for such co-benefits in Indonesia, a leading source of GHG emissions from land cover and land use change, and among the most species-rich countries in the world. We show that focal ecosystems for interventions to reduce emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in Indonesia do not coincide with areas supporting the most species-rich communities or highest concentration of threatened species. We argue that inherent trade-offs among ecosystems in emission reduction potential, opportunity cost of foregone development and biodiversity values will require a regulatory framework to balance emission reduction interventions with biodiversity co-benefit targets. We discuss how such a regulatory framework might function, and caution that pursuing emission reduction strategies without such a framework may undermine, not enhance, long-term prospects for biodiversity conservation in the tropics. PMID:21092321

  2. Teaching Biodiversity: A Successful Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gilbert, Lynne; Brown, Lucy

    2010-01-01

    This article takes you on a journey through the authors' school course unit, the "Variety of Life," which aims to unpick the idea of biodiversity and its many facets. The aims and principles of each teaching topic are defined, teaching activities suggested, resources described and the skills each topic develops listed. Whilst aimed at…

  3. Biodiversity: past, present and future

    PubMed Central

    Rubidge, Emily M.; Burton, A. Cole; Vamosi, Steven M.

    2012-01-01

    On 12–15 May 2011, a diverse group of students, researchers and practitioners from across Canada and around the world met in Banff, Alberta, to discuss the many facets of biodiversity science at the 6th Annual Meeting of the Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution. PMID:21733869

  4. Biodiversity in Word and Meaning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Slingsby, David

    2010-01-01

    This article argues that we need to abandon the word "biodiversity", to rediscover the biology that it obscures and to rethink how to introduce this biology to young people. We cannot go back to the systematics that once made up a large part of a biology A-level course (ages 16-18), so we need to find alternative ways of introducing the…

  5. Biology Student Teachers' Conceptual Frameworks regarding Biodiversity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dikmenli, Musa

    2010-01-01

    In recent years, biodiversity has received a great deal of attention worldwide, especially in environmental education. The reasons for this attention are the increase of human activities on biodiversity and environmental problems. The purpose of this study is to investigate biology student teachers' conceptual frameworks regarding biodiversity.…

  6. Making Biodiversity Meaningful through Environmental Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van Weelie, Daan; Wals, Arjen E. J.

    2002-01-01

    Explores the crossroads between science education and environmental education and presents a framework for tapping environmental education's potential of biodiversity. Outlines a number of stepping stones for making biodiversity meaningful to learners. From the perspective of environmental education, the ill-defined nature of biodiversity is a…

  7. Delayed biodiversity change: no time to waste.

    PubMed

    Essl, Franz; Dullinger, Stefan; Rabitsch, Wolfgang; Hulme, Philip E; Pyšek, Petr; Wilson, John R U; Richardson, David M

    2015-07-01

    Delayed biodiversity responses to environmental forcing mean that rates of contemporary biodiversity changes are underestimated, yet these delays are rarely addressed in conservation policies. Here, we identify mechanisms that lead to such time lags, discuss shifting human perceptions, and propose how these phenomena should be addressed in biodiversity management and science.

  8. Teaching Biodiversity & Evolution through Travel Course Experiences

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zervanos, Stam. M.; McLaughlin, Jacqueline S.

    2003-01-01

    Biodiversity is the extraordinary variety of life in this planet. In order to be fully appreciated, biodiversity needs to be experienced firsthand, or "experientially." Thus, the standard classroom lecture format is not the ideal situation for teaching biodiversity and evolutionary concepts, in that student interest and understanding are…

  9. What Works for Whom, Where, Why, for What, and When? Using Evaluation Evidence to Take Action in Local Contexts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gargani, John; Donaldson, Stewart I.

    2011-01-01

    This chapter describes a concrete process that stakeholders can use to make predictions about the future performance of programs in local contexts. Within the field of evaluation, the discussion of validity as it relates to outcome evaluation seems to be focused largely on questions of internal validity (Did it work?) with less emphasis on…

  10. Localized Low-Dose Radiotherapy for Follicular Lymphoma: History, Clinical Results, Mechanisms of Action, and Future Outlooks

    SciTech Connect

    Ganem, Gerard; Cartron, Guillaume; Girinsky, Theodore; Haas, Rick L.M.; Cosset, Jean Marc; Solal-Celigny, Philippe

    2010-11-15

    The extreme radiosensitivity of indolent lymphomas was reported in the early years of radiotherapy (RT). The efficacy of low-dose total body irradiation (1.5-2 Gy) was particularly demonstrative. Higher doses were considered appropriate for localized disease. The optimal (or conventional) dose of curative RT derived from the early studies was determined to be 30-35 Gy. Nevertheless, in older series addressing the tumoricidal radiation dose in non-Hodgkin's lymphomas, investigators noted that a significant number of 'nodular' lymphomas were controlled with a dose of <22 Gy for >3 years. The idea of reintroducing localized low-dose radiotherapy (LDRT) for indolent non-Hodgkin's lymphomas came from a clinical observation. The first study showing the high efficacy of LDRT (4 Gy in two fractions of 2 Gy within 3 days) in selected patients with chemoresistant, indolent, non-Hodgkin's lymphomas was published in 1994. Since this first report, at least eight series of patients treated with localized LDRT have been published, showing a 55% complete response rate in irradiated sites, with a median duration of 15-42 months. How LDRT induces lymphoma cell death remains partly unknown. However, some important advances have recently been reported. Localized LDRT induces an apoptosis of follicular lymphoma cells. This apoptotic cell death elicits an immune response mediated by macrophages and dendritic cells. Follicular lymphoma is probably an ideal model to explore these mechanisms. This review also discusses the future of LDRT for follicular lymphoma.

  11. Industry-Education Partnership Councils. A Comprehensive Handbook for Local Action To Improve Industry-Education Cooperation.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Industry Education Council (Hamilton-Wentworth), Hamilton (Ontario).

    This handbook provides basic information about forming and operating an industry-education partnership council (IEPC). Purpose of the handbook is to enable interested communities to replicate the model IEPC and develop strong local industry-education alliances. Part I is an introduction to industry-education partnerships. Part II focuses on…

  12. The causal model approach to nutritional problems: an effective tool for research and action at the local level.

    PubMed

    Tonglet, R; Mudosa, M; Badashonderana, M; Beghin, I; Hennart, P

    1992-01-01

    Reported are the results of a case study from Kirotshe rural health district, Northern Kivu, Zaire, where a workshop on the causal model approach to nutrition was organized in 1987. The model has since been used in the field for research design, training of health professionals, nutrition intervention, and community development. The rationale behind this approach is reviewed, the experience accumulated from Kirotshe district is described, and the ways in which the causal model contributes to comprehensive health and nutrition care are discussed. The broad range of possible policy implications of this approach underlines its usefulness for future action.

  13. The causal model approach to nutritional problems: an effective tool for research and action at the local level.

    PubMed Central

    Tonglet, R.; Mudosa, M.; Badashonderana, M.; Beghin, I.; Hennart, P.

    1992-01-01

    Reported are the results of a case study from Kirotshe rural health district, Northern Kivu, Zaire, where a workshop on the causal model approach to nutrition was organized in 1987. The model has since been used in the field for research design, training of health professionals, nutrition intervention, and community development. The rationale behind this approach is reviewed, the experience accumulated from Kirotshe district is described, and the ways in which the causal model contributes to comprehensive health and nutrition care are discussed. The broad range of possible policy implications of this approach underlines its usefulness for future action. PMID:1486667

  14. Environmental education with a local focus: The development of action competency in community leaders through participation in an environmental leadership program

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cairns, Karen Jean

    2001-07-01

    This dissertation is a historical and theoretical examination of environmental education to promote community leadership in local environmental issues. It begins with an overview of the history of environmental education, historical perspectives of the beginning of the field, ongoing differences in perspectives of practitioners, and its relationship to the larger field of education. Using a prevalent definition of environmental education as education with an aim of promoting actions, which are environmentally responsible and careful, I examine a variety of educational approaches and their results in achieving this objective. Reasons for using a local focus in terms of promotion of community sustainability are explored, and the literature review ends with a discussion of the value of community action through participatory democratic processes. The dissertation is divided into five chapters, covering an introduction to the purpose and significance of the study, literature review, methodology, results and analysis, and conclusion and implications of the research. Two programs, one at a city or urban level and one at a state level, and outcomes for their participants are explored and compared through data collected from interviews, field observation, and program documents. Findings demonstrated the value of a local focus for environmental education programs, plus the importance of experiential learning, or learning through some sort of personal connection and involvement. Examples of the types of experiential learning involved are tours or field trips, role-playing, and games illustrating concepts. Results emphasized the importance of educational process over content, information, or factual knowledge. The urban leadership program demonstrated the value of a local focus and experiential process in increasing motivation for action. The state program demonstrated the value of education of environmental leaders in democratic processes, especially collaboration, inclusion

  15. Biodiversity in intertidal rock pools: informing engineering criteria for artificial habitat enhancement in the built environment.

    PubMed

    Firth, Louise B; Schofield, Meredith; White, Freya J; Skov, Martin W; Hawkins, Stephen J

    2014-12-01

    Coastal defence structures are proliferating to counter rising and stormier seas. With increasing concern about the ecological value of built environments, efforts are being made to create novel habitat to increase biodiversity. Rock pools are infrequent on artificial structures. We compared biodiversity patterns between rock pools and emergent rock and assessed the role of pool depth and substratum incline in determining patterns of biodiversity. Rock pools were more taxon rich than emergent substrata. Patterns varied with depth and incline with algal groups being more positively associated with shallow than deeper habitats. Substratum incline had little influence on colonising epibiota, with the exception of canopy algae in deeper habitats where vertical surfaces supported greater taxon richness than horizontal surfaces. The creation of artificial rock pools in built environments will have a positive effect on biodiversity. Building pools of varying depths and inclines and shore heights will provide a range of habitats, increase environmental heterogeneity, therefore creating more possible ecological niches, promoting local biodiversity.

  16. Investigating biodiversity trajectories using scenarios--lessons from two contrasting agricultural landscapes.

    PubMed

    Lindborg, Regina; Stenseke, Marie; Cousins, Sara A O; Bengtsson, Jan; Berg, Ake; Gustafsson, Tomas; Sjödin, N Erik; Eriksson, Ove

    2009-01-01

    Agriculture is the major land use at a global scale. In addition to food production, multifunctionality of landscapes, including values and ecosystem services like biodiversity, recreation and culture, is now focus for management. This study explores how a scenario approach, involving different stakeholders, may help to improve landscape management for biodiversity conservation. Local farmers and executives at the County Administrative Board were invited to discuss rural development and conditions for farmland biodiversity in two Swedish landscapes. The potential biodiversity for three future land use scenarios for the two landscapes was discussed: nature conservation, outdoor recreation and energy production, and compared with current and historical landscapes in each region. Analyses of habitat areas, connectedness and landscape diversity suggested that the energy and recreation scenarios had a negative impact on farmland biodiversity, whereas the nature conservation scenario, the current and historically reconstructed landscapes had a higher potential for biodiversity. The farmers appreciated the nature conservation scenario, but also the energy production scenario and they highlighted the need of increased subsidies for management of biodiversity. The farmers in the high production area were less interested in nature quality per se. The executives had similar opinions as the farmers, but disagreed on the advantages with energy production, as this would be in conflict with the high biodiversity and recreational values. The local physical and socio-economical conditions differ between landscapes and potentially shaped the stakeholders emotional attachment to the local environment, their opinions and decisions on how to manage the land. We stress the importance of incorporating local knowledge, visions and regional prerequisites for different land uses in conservation, since site and landscape specific planning for biodiversity together with a flexible subsidy

  17. Systematic temporal patterns in the relationship between housing development and forest bird biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Pidgeon, Anna M; Flather, Curtis H; Radeloff, Volker C; Lepczyk, Christopher A; Keuler, Nicholas S; Wood, Eric M; Stewart, Susan I; Hammer, Roger B

    2014-10-01

    As people encroach increasingly on natural areas, one question is how this affects avian biodiversity. The answer to this is partly scale-dependent. At broad scales, human populations and biodiversity concentrate in the same areas and are positively associated, but at local scales people and biodiversity are negatively associated with biodiversity. We investigated whether there is also a systematic temporal trend in the relationship between bird biodiversity and housing development. We used linear regression to examine associations between forest bird species richness and housing growth in the conterminous United States over 30 years. Our data sources were the North American Breeding Bird Survey and the 2000 decennial U.S. Census. In the 9 largest forested ecoregions, housing density increased continually over time. Across the conterminous United States, the association between bird species richness and housing density was positive for virtually all guilds except ground nesting birds. We found a systematic trajectory of declining bird species richness as housing increased through time. In more recently developed ecoregions, where housing density was still low, the association with bird species richness was neutral or positive. In ecoregions that were developed earlier and where housing density was highest, the association of housing density with bird species richness for most guilds was negative and grew stronger with advancing decades. We propose that in general the relationship between human settlement and biodiversity over time unfolds as a 2-phase process. The first phase is apparently innocuous; associations are positive due to coincidence of low-density housing with high biodiversity. The second phase is highly detrimental to biodiversity, and increases in housing density are associated with biodiversity losses. The long-term effect on biodiversity depends on the final housing density. This general pattern can help unify our understanding of the relationship

  18. Problems and results in testing the possible mode of anti-inflammatory glucocorticoid action in carrageenin rat paw oedema: advantages of local substance injection.

    PubMed

    Hirschelmann, R; Bekemeier, H

    1984-01-01

    The anti-inflammatory effect of dexamethasone in carrageenin rat paw oedema was significantly reduced or abolished by local injection of 0.5-2.5 mg of the antiglucocorticoid progesterone, or of 5 micrograms cycloheximide, or of 2.5 micrograms actinomycin D, into the oedematous area. The results point to indirect dexamethasone action via receptor occupation and de novo protein synthesis, but this view could not be undoubtedly confirmed by systemic administration of essentially higher doses of the substances. The advantages of local low dose antagonist administration versus systemic injection of higher doses are mainly the production of effective tissue levels, as well as avoidance of toxic and other side-effects.

  19. Co-occurrence of linguistic and biological diversity in biodiversity hotspots and high biodiversity wilderness areas.

    PubMed

    Gorenflo, L J; Romaine, Suzanne; Mittermeier, Russell A; Walker-Painemilla, Kristen

    2012-05-22

    As the world grows less biologically diverse, it is becoming less linguistically and culturally diverse as well. Biologists estimate annual loss of species at 1,000 times or more greater than historic rates, and linguists predict that 50-90% of the world's languages will disappear by the end of this century. Prior studies indicate similarities in the geographic arrangement of biological and linguistic diversity, although conclusions have often been constrained by use of data with limited spatial precision. Here we use greatly improved datasets to explore the co-occurrence of linguistic and biological diversity in regions containing many of the Earth's remaining species: biodiversity hotspots and high biodiversity wilderness areas. Results indicate that these regions often contain considerable linguistic diversity, accounting for 70% of all languages on Earth. Moreover, the languages involved are frequently unique (endemic) to particular regions, with many facing extinction. Likely reasons for co-occurrence of linguistic and biological diversity are complex and appear to vary among localities, although strong geographic concordance between biological and linguistic diversity in many areas argues for some form of functional connection. Languages in high biodiversity regions also often co-occur with one or more specific conservation priorities, here defined as endangered species and protected areas, marking particular localities important for maintaining both forms of diversity. The results reported in this article provide a starting point for focused research exploring the relationship between biological and linguistic-cultural diversity, and for developing integrated strategies designed to conserve species and languages in regions rich in both.

  20. Biodiversity in the Anthropocene: prospects and policy.

    PubMed

    Seddon, Nathalie; Mace, Georgina M; Naeem, Shahid; Tobias, Joseph A; Pigot, Alex L; Cavanagh, Rachel; Mouillot, David; Vause, James; Walpole, Matt

    2016-12-14

    Meeting the ever-increasing needs of the Earth's human population without excessively reducing biological diversity is one of the greatest challenges facing humanity, suggesting that new approaches to biodiversity conservation are required. One idea rapidly gaining momentum-as well as opposition-is to incorporate the values of biodiversity into decision-making using economic methods. Here, we develop several lines of argument for how biodiversity might be valued, building on recent developments in natural science, economics and science-policy processes. Then we provide a synoptic guide to the papers in this special feature, summarizing recent research advances relevant to biodiversity valuation and management. Current evidence suggests that more biodiverse systems have greater stability and resilience, and that by maximizing key components of biodiversity we maximize an ecosystem's long-term value. Moreover, many services and values arising from biodiversity are interdependent, and often poorly captured by standard economic models. We conclude that economic valuation approaches to biodiversity conservation should (i) account for interdependency and (ii) complement rather than replace traditional approaches. To identify possible solutions, we present a framework for understanding the foundational role of hard-to-quantify 'biodiversity services' in sustaining the value of ecosystems to humanity, and then use this framework to highlight new directions for pure and applied research. In most cases, clarifying the links between biodiversity and ecosystem services, and developing effective policy and practice for managing biodiversity, will require a genuinely interdisciplinary approach.

  1. Using landscape history to predict biodiversity patterns in fragmented landscapes.

    PubMed

    Ewers, Robert M; Didham, Raphael K; Pearse, William D; Lefebvre, Véronique; Rosa, Isabel M D; Carreiras, João M B; Lucas, Richard M; Reuman, Daniel C

    2013-10-01

    Landscape ecology plays a vital role in understanding the impacts of land-use change on biodiversity, but it is not a predictive discipline, lacking theoretical models that quantitatively predict biodiversity patterns from first principles. Here, we draw heavily on ideas from phylogenetics to fill this gap, basing our approach on the insight that habitat fragments have a shared history. We develop a landscape 'terrageny', which represents the historical spatial separation of habitat fragments in the same way that a phylogeny represents evolutionary divergence among species. Combining a random sampling model with a terrageny generates numerical predictions about the expected proportion of species shared between any two fragments, the locations of locally endemic species, and the number of species that have been driven locally extinct. The model predicts that community similarity declines with terragenetic distance, and that local endemics are more likely to be found in terragenetically distinctive fragments than in large fragments. We derive equations to quantify the variance around predictions, and show that ignoring the spatial structure of fragmented landscapes leads to over-estimates of local extinction rates at the landscape scale. We argue that ignoring the shared history of habitat fragments limits our ability to understand biodiversity changes in human-modified landscapes.

  2. Using landscape history to predict biodiversity patterns in fragmented landscapes

    PubMed Central

    Ewers, Robert M; Didham, Raphael K; Pearse, William D; Lefebvre, Véronique; Rosa, Isabel M D; Carreiras, João M B; Lucas, Richard M; Reuman, Daniel C

    2013-01-01

    Landscape ecology plays a vital role in understanding the impacts of land-use change on biodiversity, but it is not a predictive discipline, lacking theoretical models that quantitatively predict biodiversity patterns from first principles. Here, we draw heavily on ideas from phylogenetics to fill this gap, basing our approach on the insight that habitat fragments have a shared history. We develop a landscape ‘terrageny’, which represents the historical spatial separation of habitat fragments in the same way that a phylogeny represents evolutionary divergence among species. Combining a random sampling model with a terrageny generates numerical predictions about the expected proportion of species shared between any two fragments, the locations of locally endemic species, and the number of species that have been driven locally extinct. The model predicts that community similarity declines with terragenetic distance, and that local endemics are more likely to be found in terragenetically distinctive fragments than in large fragments. We derive equations to quantify the variance around predictions, and show that ignoring the spatial structure of fragmented landscapes leads to over-estimates of local extinction rates at the landscape scale. We argue that ignoring the shared history of habitat fragments limits our ability to understand biodiversity changes in human-modified landscapes. PMID:23931035

  3. Accounting for biodiversity in the dairy industry.

    PubMed

    Sizemore, Grant C

    2015-05-15

    Biodiversity is an essential part of properly functioning ecosystems, yet the loss of biodiversity currently occurs at rates unparalleled in the modern era. One of the major causes of this phenomenon is habitat loss and modification as a result of intensified agricultural practices. This paper provides a starting point for considering biodiversity within dairy production, and, although focusing primarily on the United States, findings are applicable broadly. Biodiversity definitions and assessments (e.g., indicators, tools) are proposed and reviewed. Although no single indicator or tool currently meets all the needs of comprehensive assessment, many sustainable practices are readily adoptable as ways to conserve and promote biodiversity. These practices, as well as potential funding opportunities are identified. Given the state of uncertainty in addressing the complex nature of biodiversity assessments, the adoption of generally sustainable environmental practices may be the best currently available option for protecting biodiversity on dairy lands.

  4. Optimized spatial priorities for biodiversity conservation in China: a systematic conservation planning perspective.

    PubMed

    Wu, Ruidong; Long, Yongcheng; Malanson, George P; Garber, Paul A; Zhang, Shuang; Li, Diqiang; Zhao, Peng; Wang, Longzhu; Duo, Hairui

    2014-01-01

    By addressing several key features overlooked in previous studies, i.e. human disturbance, integration of ecosystem- and species-level conservation features, and principles of complementarity and representativeness, we present the first national-scale systematic conservation planning for China to determine the optimized spatial priorities for biodiversity conservation. We compiled a spatial database on the distributions of ecosystem- and species-level conservation features, and modeled a human disturbance index (HDI) by aggregating information using several socioeconomic proxies. We ran Marxan with two scenarios (HDI-ignored and HDI-considered) to investigate the effects of human disturbance, and explored the geographic patterns of the optimized spatial conservation priorities. Compared to when HDI was ignored, the HDI-considered scenario resulted in (1) a marked reduction (∼9%) in the total HDI score and a slight increase (∼7%) in the total area of the portfolio of priority units, (2) a significant increase (∼43%) in the total irreplaceable area and (3) more irreplaceable units being identified in almost all environmental zones and highly-disturbed provinces. Thus the inclusion of human disturbance is essential for cost-effective priority-setting. Attention should be targeted to the areas that are characterized as moderately-disturbed, <2,000 m in altitude, and/or intermediately- to extremely-rugged in terrain to identify potentially important regions for implementing cost-effective conservation. We delineated 23 primary large-scale priority areas that are significant for conserving China's biodiversity, but those isolated priority units in disturbed regions are in more urgent need of conservation actions so as to prevent immediate and severe biodiversity loss. This study presents a spatially optimized national-scale portfolio of conservation priorities--effectively representing the overall biodiversity of China while minimizing conflicts with economic

  5. Optimized Spatial Priorities for Biodiversity Conservation in China: A Systematic Conservation Planning Perspective

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Ruidong; Long, Yongcheng; Malanson, George P.; Garber, Paul A.; Zhang, Shuang; Li, Diqiang; Zhao, Peng; Wang, Longzhu; Duo, Hairui

    2014-01-01

    By addressing several key features overlooked in previous studies, i.e. human disturbance, integration of ecosystem- and species-level conservation features, and principles of complementarity and representativeness, we present the first national-scale systematic conservation planning for China to determine the optimized spatial priorities for biodiversity conservation. We compiled a spatial database on the distributions of ecosystem- and species-level conservation features, and modeled a human disturbance index (HDI) by aggregating information using several socioeconomic proxies. We ran Marxan with two scenarios (HDI-ignored and HDI-considered) to investigate the effects of human disturbance, and explored the geographic patterns of the optimized spatial conservation priorities. Compared to when HDI was ignored, the HDI-considered scenario resulted in (1) a marked reduction (∼9%) in the total HDI score and a slight increase (∼7%) in the total area of the portfolio of priority units, (2) a significant increase (∼43%) in the total irreplaceable area and (3) more irreplaceable units being identified in almost all environmental zones and highly-disturbed provinces. Thus the inclusion of human disturbance is essential for cost-effective priority-setting. Attention should be targeted to the areas that are characterized as moderately-disturbed, <2,000 m in altitude, and/or intermediately- to extremely-rugged in terrain to identify potentially important regions for implementing cost-effective conservation. We delineated 23 primary large-scale priority areas that are significant for conserving China's biodiversity, but those isolated priority units in disturbed regions are in more urgent need of conservation actions so as to prevent immediate and severe biodiversity loss. This study presents a spatially optimized national-scale portfolio of conservation priorities – effectively representing the overall biodiversity of China while minimizing conflicts with economic

  6. The Loss of Biodiversity as a Challenge for Sustainable Development: How Do Pupils in Chile and Germany Perceive Resource Dilemmas?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Menzel, Susanne; Bögeholz, Susanne

    2009-08-01

    The topic of biodiversity is of high value for education for sustainable development as it reflects the interaction of ecological, economic and social issues particularly well. Especially in so-called biodiversity hotspots, among them Chile, natural resources are often depleted for economic interest which, in many cases, is required income. Therefore, economic and social aspects must be considered in order to fully understand biodiversity loss. Being such an important issue, it is surprising that little is known thus far about learning prerequisites concerning biodiversity. This paper presents a qualitative interview study that investigated 16 to 18-year-old Chilean and German learners’ perception of biodiversity and its loss ( n = 24). Firstly, the pupils’ cognitive frameworks were analysed. Secondly, subjective theories about biodiversity loss due to resource dilemmas were explored. Three subjective theories that emerged from the data reflected the notion that most pupils focused on either ecological or economic aspects of biodiversity loss. Pupils who concentrated on ecological aspects often referred to incorrect ecological facts. Moreover, these pupils showed difficulties in developing empathy and solidarity with impoverished people, who depend economically on plants in a resource dilemma. A smaller group of pupils succeeded in integrating the ecological, economic, and social aspects. Regarding the two samples, Chilean pupils seemed to have greater difficulties in recognising the social aspects of biodiversity loss, while German pupils were largely unaware of biodiversity loss on a local level. Implications for biodiversity education and future research will be outlined and discussed.

  7. Techniques for Quantifying Phytoplankton Biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, Zackary I.; Martiny, Adam C.

    2015-01-01

    The biodiversity of phytoplankton is a core measurement of the state and activity of marine ecosystems. In the context of historical approaches, we review recent major advances in the technologies that have enabled deeper characterization of the biodiversity of phytoplankton. In particular, high-throughput sequencing of single loci/genes, genomes, and communities (metagenomics) has revealed exceptional phylogenetic and genomic diversity whose breadth is not fully constrained. Other molecular tools—such as fingerprinting, quantitative polymerase chain reaction, and fluorescence in situ hybridization—have provided additional insight into the dynamics of this diversity in the context of environmental variability. Techniques for characterizing the functional diversity of community structure through targeted or untargeted approaches based on RNA or protein have also greatly advanced. A wide range of techniques is now available for characterizing phytoplankton communities, and these tools will continue to advance through ongoing improvements in both technology and data interpretation.

  8. Techniques for quantifying phytoplankton biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Zackary I; Martiny, Adam C

    2015-01-01

    The biodiversity of phytoplankton is a core measurement of the state and activity of marine ecosystems. In the context of historical approaches, we review recent major advances in the technologies that have enabled deeper characterization of the biodiversity of phytoplankton. In particular, high-throughput sequencing of single loci/genes, genomes, and communities (metagenomics) has revealed exceptional phylogenetic and genomic diversity whose breadth is not fully constrained. Other molecular tools-such as fingerprinting, quantitative polymerase chain reaction, and fluorescence in situ hybridization-have provided additional insight into the dynamics of this diversity in the context of environmental variability. Techniques for characterizing the functional diversity of community structure through targeted or untargeted approaches based on RNA or protein have also greatly advanced. A wide range of techniques is now available for characterizing phytoplankton communities, and these tools will continue to advance through ongoing improvements in both technology and data interpretation.

  9. Joint implementation: Biodiversity and greenhouse gas offsets

    SciTech Connect

    Cutright, N.J.

    1996-11-01

    One of the most pressing environmental issues today is the possibility that projected increases in global emissions of greenhouse gases form increased deforestation, development, and fossil-fuel combustion could significantly alter global climate patterns. Under the terms of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, signed in Rio de janeiro during the June 19923 Earth Summit, the United States and other industrialized countries committed to balancing greenhouse gas emissions at 1990 levels in the year 2000. Included in the treaty is a provision titled {open_quotes}Joint Implementation,{close_quotes} whereby industrialized countries assist developing countries in jointly modifying long-term emission trends, either through emission reductions or by protecting and enhancing greenhouse gas sinks (carbon sequestration). The US Climate Action Plan, signed by President Clinton in 1993, calls for voluntary climate change mitigation measures by various sectors, and the action plan included a new program, the US Initiative on Joint Implementation. Wisconsin Electric decided to invest in a JI project because its concept encourages creative, cost-effective solutions to environmental problems through partnering, international cooperation, and innovation. The project chosen, a forest preservation and management effort in Belize, will sequester more than five million tons of carbon dioxide over a 40-year period, will become economically self-sustaining after ten years, and will have substantial biodiversity benefits. 6 refs., 1 tab.

  10. Joint Implementation: Biodiversity and Greenhouse Gas Offsets

    PubMed

    CUTRIGHT

    1996-11-01

    / One of the most pressing environmental issues today is the possibility that projected increases in global emissions of greenhouse gases from increased deforestation, development, and fossil-fuel combustion could significantly alter global climate patterns. Under the terms of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, signed in Rio de Janeiro during the June 1992 Earth Summit, the United States and other industrialized countries committed to balancing greenhouse gas emissions at 1990 levels in the year 2000. Included in the treaty is a provision titled "Joint Implementation," whereby industrialized countries assist developing countries in jointly modifying long-term emission trends, either through emission reductions or by protecting and enhancing greenhouse gas sinks (carbon sequestration). The US Climate Action Plan, signed by President Clinton in 1993, calls for voluntary climate change mitigation measures by various sectors, and the action plan included a new program, the US Initiative on Joint Implementation. Wisconsin Electric decided to invest in a JI project because its concept encourages creative, cost-effective solutions to environmental problems through partnering, international cooperation, and innovation. The project chosen, a forest preservation and management effort in Belize, will sequester more than five million tons of carbon dioxide over a 40-year period, will become economically self-sustaining after ten years, and will have substantial biodiversity benefits.KEY WORDS: Joint implementation; Activities implemented jointly; Carbon sequestration; Carbon dioxide; Global climate change; Greenhouse gas; Belize

  11. Coordinate synthesis and protein localization in a bacterial organelle by the action of a penicillin-binding-protein

    PubMed Central

    Hughes, H. Velocity; Lisher, John P.; Hardy, Gail G.; Kysela, David T.; Arnold, Randy J.; Giedroc, David P.; Brun, Yves V.

    2013-01-01

    SUMMARY Organelles with specialized form and function occur in diverse bacteria. Within the Alphaproteobacteria, several species extrude thin cellular appendages known as stalks, which function in nutrient uptake, buoyancy and reproduction. Consistent with their specialization, stalks maintain a unique molecular composition compared to the cell body, but how this is achieved remains to be fully elucidated. Here we dissect the mechanism of localization of StpX, a stalk-specific protein in Caulobacter crescentus. Using a forward genetics approach, we identify a penicillin-bindingprotein PbpC, which is required for the localization of StpX in the stalk. We show that PbpC acts at the stalked cell pole to anchor StpX to rigid components of the outer membrane of the elongating stalk, concurrent with stalk synthesis. Stalklocalized StpX in turn functions in cellular responses to copper and zinc, suggesting that the stalk may contribute to metal homeostasis in Caulobacter. Together, these results identify a novel role for a penicillin-binding-protein in compartmentalizing a bacterial organelle it itself helps create, raising the possibility that cell wallsynthetic enzymes may broadly serve not only to synthesize the diverse shapes of bacteria, but also to functionalize them at the molecular level. PMID:24118129

  12. Critical heat flux in locally heated liquid film moving under the action of gas flow in a mini-channel

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tkachenko, E. M.; Zaitsev, D. V.; Orlik, E. V.; Kabov, O. A.

    2016-10-01

    Thin and ultra thin liquid films driven by a forced gas/vapor flow (stratified or annular flows), i.e. shear-driven liquid films in a narrow channel, is one of the promising candidate for the thermal management of advanced semiconductor devices with high local heat release. In experiments performed in this paper with locally heated shear-driven liquid films of water the effect of various conditions, such as flow rates of liquid and gas and channel height, on critical heat flux (CHF) was investigated. In experiments the record value of CHF as high as 540 W/cm2 has been achieved. The heat spreading into the substrate and the heat loses into the atmosphere in total don't exceed 30% at heat fluxes higher than 200 W/cm2. Comparison of shear-driven liquid films and gravity-driven liquid films showed that CHF in shear-driven films up to 10 times higher than in gravity-driven liquid films. Thus, prospect of using shear- driven films of water in modern cooling systems of semiconductor devices was confirmed.

  13. Is marine biodiversity at risk

    SciTech Connect

    Culotta, E.

    1994-02-18

    Evidence is beginning to accumulate that human development of coastlines and overfishing may be having deleterious effects on marine biodiversity. Although some biologists doubt marine extinctions, the possibility is being taken seriously by scientific organizations, who have been sponsoring conferences and workshops on the changing diversity of the oceans. Four federal agencies (NSF, NOAA, the Office of Naval Research, and DOE) have banded together to sponsor a National Research Council initiative to chart a research agenda.

  14. When bugs reveal biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Bohmann, Kristine; Schnell, Ida B; Gilbert, M Thomas P

    2013-02-01

    One of the fundamental challenges of conservation biology is gathering data on species distribution and abundance. And unless conservationists know where a species is found and in which numbers, it is very difficult to apply effective conservation efforts. In today's age of increasingly powerful monitoring tools, instant communication and online databases, one might be forgiven for thinking that such knowledge is easy to come by. However, of the approximately 5,400 terrestrial mammals on the IUCN Red List, no fewer than 789 (ca. 14%) are listed as 'Data Deficient' (IUCN 2012) – IUCN’s term for 'haven't got a clue'. Until recently, the only way to gather information of numbers and distribution of terrestrial mammals (and many other vertebrates) was through observational-based approaches such as visual records, the presence of tracks or spoor or even identification from bushmeat or hunters' trophies pinned to the walls in local villages. While recent technological developments have considerably improved the efficacy of such approaches, for example, using remote-sensing devices such as audio- or camera-traps or even remote drones (Koh & Wich 2012), there has been a growing realization of the power of molecular methods that identify mammals based on trace evidence. Suitable substrates include the obvious, such as faecal and hair samples (e.g. Vigilant et al. 2009), to the less obvious, including environmental DNA extracted from sediments, soil or water samples (e.g. Taberlet et al. 2012), and as recently demonstrated, the dietary content of blood-sucking invertebrates (Gariepy et al. 2012; Schnell et al. 2012). In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Calvignac-Spencer et al. (2013) present a potentially powerful development in this regard; diet analysis of carrion flies. With their near global distribution, and as most field biologists know, irritatingly high frequency in most terrestrial areas of conservation concern (which directly translates into ease of sampling

  15. Assemblage time series reveal biodiversity change but not systematic loss.

    PubMed

    Dornelas, Maria; Gotelli, Nicholas J; McGill, Brian; Shimadzu, Hideyasu; Moyes, Faye; Sievers, Caya; Magurran, Anne E

    2014-04-18

    The extent to which biodiversity change in local assemblages contributes to global biodiversity loss is poorly understood. We analyzed 100 time series from biomes across Earth to ask how diversity within assemblages is changing through time. We quantified patterns of temporal α diversity, measured as change in local diversity, and temporal β diversity, measured as change in community composition. Contrary to our expectations, we did not detect systematic loss of α diversity. However, community composition changed systematically through time, in excess of predictions from null models. Heterogeneous rates of environmental change, species range shifts associated with climate change, and biotic homogenization may explain the different patterns of temporal α and β diversity. Monitoring and understanding change in species composition should be a conservation priority.

  16. Disturbance and change in biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Dornelas, Maria

    2010-11-27

    Understanding how disturbance affects biodiversity is important for both fundamental and applied reasons. Here, I investigate how disturbances with different ecological effects change biodiversity metrics. I define three main types of disturbance effects: D disturbance (shifts in mortality rate), B disturbance (shifts in reproductive rates) and K disturbance (shifts in carrying capacity). Numerous composite disturbances can be defined including any combination of these three types of ecological effects. The consequences of D, B and K disturbances, as well as of composite DBK disturbances are examined by comparing metrics before and after a disturbance, in disturbed and undisturbed communities. I use simulations of neutral communities and examine species richness, total abundance and species abundance distributions. The patterns of change in biodiversity metrics are consistent among different types of disturbance. K disturbance has the most severe effects, followed by D disturbance, and B disturbance has nearly negligible effects. Consequences of composite DBK disturbances are more complex than any of the three types of disturbance, with unimodal relationships along a disturbance gradient arising when D, B and K are negatively correlated. Importantly, regardless of disturbance type, community isolation enhances the negative consequences and hinders the positive effects of disturbances.

  17. Educating the Canadian public about the social determinants of health: the time for local public health action is now!

    PubMed

    Raphael, Dennis

    2012-09-01

    Despite Canada's history of developing health promotion and population health concepts, Canada falls behind other wealthy nations in having these ideas implemented in the form of public policy that strengthens the social determinants of health (SDH). Much of this has to do with the lack of awareness by Canadians about the SDH that stems from the lack of media reporting on the determinants of health and the unwillingness of most local public health units across Canada to raise these issues in a consistent manner. Canada is not unique in this situation. If the public health community in Canada is to live up to its self-professed mission of improving the health of Canadians it must undertake to educate the public about the SDH as effectively as it took on the task of educating the public of the importance of not smoking, of exercising and adopting a healthy diet.

  18. Prioritising local action for water quality improvement using citizen science; a study across three major metropolitan areas of China.

    PubMed

    Thornhill, Ian; Ho, Jonathan G; Zhang, Yuchao; Li, Huashou; Ho, Kin Chung; Miguel-Chinchilla, Leticia; Loiselle, Steven A

    2017-04-15

    Streams in urban areas are prone to degradation. While urbanization-induced poor water quality is a widely observed and well documented phenomenon, the mechanism to pinpoint local drivers of urban stream degradation, and their relative influence on water quality, is still lacking. Utilizing data from the citizen science project FreshWater Watch, we use a machine learning approach to identify key indicators, potential drivers, and potential controls to water quality across the metropolitan areas of Shanghai, Guangzhou and Hong Kong. Partial dependencies were examined to establish the direction of relationships between predictors and water quality. A random forest classification model indicated that predictors of stream water colour (drivers related to artificial land coverage and agricultural land use coverage) and potential controls related to the presence of bankside vegetation were found to be important in identifying basins with degraded water quality conditions, based on individual measurements of turbidity and nutrient (N-NO3 and P-PO4) concentrations.

  19. Group Decisions in Biodiversity Conservation: Implications from Game Theory

    PubMed Central

    Frank, David M.; Sarkar, Sahotra

    2010-01-01

    Background Decision analysis and game theory [1], [2] have proved useful tools in various biodiversity conservation planning and modeling contexts [3]–[5]. This paper shows how game theory may be used to inform group decisions in biodiversity conservation scenarios by modeling conflicts between stakeholders to identify Pareto–inefficient Nash equilibria. These are cases in which each agent pursuing individual self–interest leads to a worse outcome for all, relative to other feasible outcomes. Three case studies from biodiversity conservation contexts showing this feature are modeled to demonstrate how game–theoretical representation can inform group decision-making. Methodology and Principal Findings The mathematical theory of games is used to model three biodiversity conservation scenarios with Pareto–inefficient Nash equilibria: (i) a two–agent case involving wild dogs in South Africa; (ii) a three–agent raptor and grouse conservation scenario from the United Kingdom; and (iii) an n–agent fish and coral conservation scenario from the Philippines. In each case there is reason to believe that traditional mechanism–design solutions that appeal to material incentives may be inadequate, and the game–theoretical analysis recommends a resumption of further deliberation between agents and the initiation of trust—and confidence—building measures. Conclusions and Significance Game theory can and should be used as a normative tool in biodiversity conservation contexts: identifying scenarios with Pareto–inefficient Nash equilibria enables constructive action in order to achieve (closer to) optimal conservation outcomes, whether by policy solutions based on mechanism design or otherwise. However, there is mounting evidence [6] that formal mechanism–design solutions may backfire in certain cases. Such scenarios demand a return to group deliberation and the creation of reciprocal relationships of trust. PMID:20523732

  20. Localization and action of Dragon (repulsive guidance molecule b), a novel bone morphogenetic protein coreceptor, throughout the reproductive axis.

    PubMed

    Xia, Yin; Sidis, Yisrael; Mukherjee, Abir; Samad, Tarek A; Brenner, Gary; Woolf, Clifford J; Lin, Herbert Y; Schneyer, Alan

    2005-08-01

    Bone morphogenetic proteins (BMPs) play important roles in reproduction including primordial germ cell formation, follicular development, spermatogenesis, and FSH secretion. Dragon, a recently identified glycosylphosphatidylinositol-anchored member of the repulsive guidance molecule family, is also a BMP coreceptor. In the present study, we determined the tissue and cellular localization of Dragon in reproductive organs using immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization. Among reproductive organs, Dragon was expressed in testis, epididymis, ovary, uterus, and pituitary. In the testis of early postnatal mice, Dragon was found in gonocytes and spermatogonia, whereas in immature testes, Dragon was only weakly expressed in spermatogonia. Interestingly, pregnant mare serum gonadotropin treatment of immature mice robustly induced Dragon production in spermatocytes. In adult testis, Dragon was found in spermatocytes and round spermatids. In the ovary, Dragon was detected exclusively within oocytes and primarily those within secondary follicles. In the pituitary, Dragon-expressing cells overlapped FSH-expressing cells. Dragon was also expressed in a number of cell lines originating from reproductive tissues including Ishikawa, Hela, LbetaT2, MCF-7, and JEG3 cells. Immunocytochemistry and gradient sucrose ultracentrifugation studies showed Dragon was localized in lipid rafts within the plasma membrane. In reproductive cell lines, Dragon expression enhanced signaling of exogenous BMP2 or BMP4. The present studies demonstrate that Dragon expression is dynamically regulated throughout the reproductive tract and that Dragon protein modulates BMP signaling in cells from reproductive tissues. The overlap between Dragon expression and the functional BMP signaling system suggests that Dragon may play a role in mammalian reproduction.

  1. Co-administration of memantine with epinephrine produces a marked peripheral action in intensifying and prolonging analgesia in response to local skin pinprick in rats.

    PubMed

    Chen, Yu-Wen; Tzeng, Jann-Inn; Pan, He-Jia; Hung, Ching-Hsia; Chen, Yu-Chung; Wang, Jhi-Joung

    2014-06-27

    The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of epinephrine as adjuvant for memantine or lidocaine as an infiltrative anesthetic. Using a rat model of cutaneous trunci muscle reflex (CTMR), we evaluated the effects of adding epinephrine to memantine or lidocaine on infiltrative cutaneous analgesia. Lidocaine, a known local anesthetic, was used as control. We found that epinephrine, memantine, and lidocaine produced a dose-dependent local anesthetic effect as infiltrative cutaneous analgesia. On a 50% effective dose (ED50) basis, the relative potencies were epinephrine [0.012 (0.006-0.020)μmol]>memantine [4.010 (3.311-4.988)μmol]>lidocaine [6.177 (5.333-7.218)μmol] (P<0.05 for each comparison). Mixtures of epinephrine (2.7nmol or 13.7nmol) with drugs (memantine or lidocaine) at ED50 or ED95, respectively, enhanced the potency and prolonged the duration of action on infiltrative cutaneous analgesia. Intraperitoneal injection of co-administration of drugs (memantine or lidocaine) at ED95 with epinephrine (13.7nmol) produced no cutaneous analgesia (data not shown). Epinephrine, memantine, and lidocaine were shown to have local anesthetic effects as infiltrative cutaneous analgesia. Epinephrine increased the duration and potency of memantine and lidocaine as an infiltrative anesthetic.

  2. Action of multiple intra-QTL genes concerted around a co-localized transcription factor underpins a large effect QTL

    PubMed Central

    Dixit, Shalabh; Kumar Biswal, Akshaya; Min, Aye; Henry, Amelia; Oane, Rowena H.; Raorane, Manish L.; Longkumer, Toshisangba; Pabuayon, Isaiah M.; Mutte, Sumanth K.; Vardarajan, Adithi R.; Miro, Berta; Govindan, Ganesan; Albano-Enriquez, Blesilda; Pueffeld, Mandy; Sreenivasulu, Nese; Slamet-Loedin, Inez; Sundarvelpandian, Kalaipandian; Tsai, Yuan-Ching; Raghuvanshi, Saurabh; Hsing, Yue-Ie C.; Kumar, Arvind; Kohli, Ajay

    2015-01-01

    Sub-QTLs and multiple intra-QTL genes are hypothesized to underpin large-effect QTLs. Known QTLs over gene families, biosynthetic pathways or certain traits represent functional gene-clusters of genes of the same gene ontology (GO). Gene-clusters containing genes of different GO have not been elaborated, except in silico as coexpressed genes within QTLs. Here we demonstrate the requirement of multiple intra-QTL genes for the full impact of QTL qDTY12.1 on rice yield under drought. Multiple evidences are presented for the need of the transcription factor ‘no apical meristem’ (OsNAM12.1) and its co-localized target genes of separate GO categories for qDTY12.1 function, raising a regulon-like model of genetic architecture. The molecular underpinnings of qDTY12.1 support its effectiveness in further improving a drought tolerant genotype and for its validity in multiple genotypes/ecosystems/environments. Resolving the combinatorial value of OsNAM12.1 with individual intra-QTL genes notwithstanding, identification and analyses of qDTY12.1has fast-tracked rice improvement towards food security. PMID:26507552

  3. Deregulation, Distrust, and Democracy: State and Local Action to Ensure Equitable Access to Healthy, Sustainably Produced Food.

    PubMed

    Wiley, Lindsay F

    2015-01-01

    Environmental, public health, alternative food, and food justice advocates are working together to achieve incremental agricultural subsidy and nutrition assistance reforms that increase access to fresh fruits and vegetables. When it comes to targeting food and beverage products for increased regulation and decreased consumption, however, the priorities of various food reform movements diverge. This article argues that foundational legal issues, including preemption of state and local authority to protect the public's health and welfare, increasing First Amendment protection for commercial speech, and eroding judicial deference to legislative policy judgments, present a more promising avenue for collaboration across movements than discrete food reform priorities around issues like sugary drinks, genetic modification, or organics. Using the Vermont Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) Labeling Act litigation, the Kauai GMO Cultivation Ordinance litigation, the New York City Sugary Drinks Portion Rule litigation, and the Cleveland Trans Fat Ban litigation as case studies, I discuss the foundational legal challenges faced by diverse food reformers, even when their discrete reform priorities diverge. I also 'explore the broader implications of cooperation among groups that respond differently to the "irrationalities" (from the public health perspective) or "values" (from the environmental and alternative food perspective) that permeate public risk perception for democratic governance in the face of scientific uncertainty.

  4. Detectability counts when assessing populations for biodiversity targets.

    PubMed

    Petrovan, Silviu O; Ward, Alastair I; Wheeler, Philip

    2011-01-01

    Efficient, practical and accurate estimates of population parameters are a necessary basis for effective conservation action to meet biodiversity targets. The brown hare is representative of many European farmland species: historically widespread and abundant but having undergone rapid declines as a result of agricultural intensification. As a priority species in the UK Biodiversity Action Plan, it has national targets for population increase that are part of wider national environmental indicators. Previous research has indicated that brown hare declines have been greatest in pastural landscapes and that gains might be made by focussing conservation effort there. We therefore used hares in pastural landscapes to examine how basic changes in survey methodology can affect the precision of population density estimates and related these to national targets for biodiversity conservation in the UK. Line transects for hares carried out at night resulted in higher numbers of detections, had better-fitting detection functions and provided more robust density estimates with lower effort than those during the day, due primarily to the increased probability of detection of hares at night and the nature of hare responses to the observer. Hare spring densities varied widely within a single region, with a pooled mean of 20.6 hares km(-2), significantly higher than the reported national average of hares in pastures of 3.3 hares km(-2). The high number of encounters allowed us to resolve hare densities at site, season and year scales. We demonstrate how survey conduct can impact on data quantity and quality with implications for setting and monitoring biodiversity targets. Our case study of the brown hare provides evidence that for wildlife species with low detectability, large scale volunteer-based monitoring programmes, either species specific or generalist, might be more successfully and efficiently carried out by a small number of trained personnel able to employ methods that

  5. Loss of biodiversity in a conservation unit of the Brazilian Atlantic Forest: the effect of introducing non-native fish species.

    PubMed

    Fragoso-Moura, E N; Oporto, L T; Maia-Barbosa, P M; Barbosa, F A R

    2016-02-01

    The introduction of species has become an important problem for biodiversity and natural ecosystem conservation. The lake system of the middle Rio Doce (MG, Brazil) comprises c. 200 lakes at various conservation states, of which 50 are located within the Rio Doce State Park (PERD). Previous studies had verified several of these lakes suffered non-native fishes introductions and the presence of these species needs for the implementation of actions aiming at not only their control but also the preservation of the native species. This study discusses the effects of non-native fish species in the largest conservation unit of Atlantic Forest in Minas Gerais, southeast of Brazil, using data from 1983 to 2010 distributed as follow: data prior to 2006 were obtained from previous studies, and data from September 2006 to July 2010 were obtained in Lake Carioca at four sampling stations using gillnets, seine nets and sieve. A total of 17 fish species was collected (2006-2010) of which five were introduced species. Among the small to medium size native species (30 to 2000 mm standard length) seven had disappeared, two are new records and one was recaptured. The non-native species Cichla kelberi (peacock bass) and Pygocentrus nattereri (red piranha) are within the most abundant captured species. Integrated with other actions, such as those preventing new introductions, a selective fishing schedule is proposed as an alternative approach to improve the conservation management actions and the local and regional biodiversity maintenance.

  6. Public Health Response Systems In-Action: Learning from Local Health Departments’ Experiences with Acute and Emergency Incidents

    PubMed Central

    Hunter, Jennifer C.; Yang, Jane E.; Crawley, Adam W.; Biesiadecki, Laura; Aragón, Tomás J.

    2013-01-01

    As part of their core mission, public health agencies attend to a wide range of disease and health threats, including those that require routine, acute, and emergency responses. While each incident is unique, the number and type of response activities are finite; therefore, through comparative analysis, we can learn about commonalities in the response patterns that could improve predictions and expectations regarding the resources and capabilities required to respond to future acute events. In this study, we interviewed representatives from more than 120 local health departments regarding their recent experiences with real-world acute public health incidents, such as infectious disease outbreaks, severe weather events, chemical spills, and bioterrorism threats. We collected highly structured data on key aspects of the incident and the public health response, particularly focusing on the public health activities initiated and community partners engaged in the response efforts. As a result, we are able to make comparisons across event types, create response profiles, and identify functional and structural response patterns that have import for future public health preparedness and response. Our study contributes to clarifying the complexity of public health response systems and our analysis reveals the ways in which these systems are adaptive to the character of the threat, resulting in differential activation of functions and partners based on the type of incident. Continued and rigorous examination of the experiences of health departments throughout the nation will refine our very understanding of what the public health response system is, will enable the identification of organizational and event inputs to performance, and will allow for the construction of rich, relevant, and practical models of response operations that can be employed to strengthen public health systems. PMID:24236137

  7. Refuges, flower strips, biodiversity and agronomic interest.

    PubMed

    Roy, Grégory; Wateau, Karine; Legrand, Mickaël; Oste, Sandrine

    2008-01-01

    Several arthropods are natural predators of pests, and they are able to reduce and control their population development. FREDON Nord Pas-de-Calais (Federation Regionate de Defense contre les Organismes Nuisibles = Regional Federation for Pest Control) has begun for a long time to form farmers to the recognition of beneficial arthropods and to show them their usefulness. These beneficial insects or arachnids are present everywhere, in orchards and even in fields which are areas relatively poor in biodiversity. Adults feed in the flower strips instead larvae and some adults feed on preys such as aphids or caterpillars. Most of the time, beneficial insects can regulate pest but sometimes, in agricultural area, they can't make it early enough and efficiently. Their action begin too late and there biodiversity and number are too low. It's possible to enhance their action by manipulating the ecological infrastructures, like sewing flower strips or installing refuges. Flower strips increase the density of natural enemies and make them be present earlier in the field in order to control pests. Refuges permit beneficial's to spend winter on the spot. So they're able to be active and to grow in number earlier. From 2004 to 2007, on the one hand, FREDON Nord Pas-de-Calais has developed a research program. Its purpose was to inventory practices and also tools and means available and to judge the advisability of using such or such beneficial refuge in orchards. On the second hand, it studied the impact in orchard of refuges on population of beneficial's and the difference there were between manufactured refuges and homemade refuges. Interesting prospects were obtained with some of them. Otherwise, since 2003, FREDON has studied flower strips influence on beneficial population and their impact on pest control. In cabbage fields, results of trials have shown that flower strips lead to a reduction of aphid number under acceptable economic level, up to 50 meters from flower strips

  8. Set Goals & Select Actions

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    This phase of the Local Climate Action Framework will help users articulate the goals for their climate, energy, and sustainability programs, as well as to identify the actions that are most appropriate to help meet those goals.

  9. Adoptive transfer of genetically modified macrophages elucidated TGF-beta-mediated 'self-defence' of the glomerulus against local action of macrophages.

    PubMed

    Kitamura, M

    1999-01-01

    TGF-beta has several anti-inflammatory properties which may be relevant to prevention of or recovery from acute glomerular inflammation. Using genetically modified mesangial cells and a technique for in vivo macrophage transfer, this article provides evidence for TGF-beta-mediated 'self-defence' of the glomerulus against macrophages. Rat mesangial cells stably transfected with TGF-beta1 showed a blunted response to the macrophage-derived, proinflammatory cytokine IL-1beta. In contrast, mesangial cells expressing the dominant-interfering TGF-beta receptor showed an enhanced response to IL-1. Similarly, externally added TGF-beta1 inhibited the cytokine response of normal glomeruli, and isolated nephritic glomeruli producing active TGF-beta1 showed a depressed response to IL-1beta, compared to normal glomeruli. Consistent with these in vitro results, in vivo transfer of activated macrophages revealed that the TGF-beta-producing glomeruli are insensitive to the effector action of macrophages. These results indicate that TGF-beta1 functions as an endogenous 'defender' that counteracts local action of activated macrophages in the glomerulus.

  10. Autocrine action of amphiregulin in a colon carcinoma cell line and immunocytochemical localization of amphiregulin in human colon

    PubMed Central

    1992-01-01

    by approximately 50% by the addition of the anti-EGF receptor mAb alone. These results indicate that AR and the EGF receptor are involved in the autocrine growth of these cells and suggests that AR may act through the EGF receptor via an extracellular autocrine loop. To study the expression of AR in human colon in vivo, AR was localized immunocytochemically in formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded sections from normal and malignant human colon using the AR-Ab1 antibodies.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS) PMID:1639855

  11. On biodiversity conservation and poverty traps

    PubMed Central

    Barrett, Christopher B.; Travis, Alexander J.; Dasgupta, Partha

    2011-01-01

    This paper introduces a special feature on biodiversity conservation and poverty traps. We define and explain the core concepts and then identify four distinct classes of mechanisms that define important interlinkages between biodiversity and poverty. The multiplicity of candidate mechanisms underscores a major challenge in designing policy appropriate across settings. This framework is then used to introduce the ensuing set of papers, which empirically explore these various mechanisms linking poverty traps and biodiversity conservation. PMID:21873176

  12. Marine Biodiversity in Japanese Waters

    PubMed Central

    Fujikura, Katsunori; Lindsay, Dhugal; Kitazato, Hiroshi; Nishida, Shuhei; Shirayama, Yoshihisa

    2010-01-01

    To understand marine biodiversity in Japanese waters, we have compiled information on the marine biota in Japanese waters, including the number of described species (species richness), the history of marine biology research in Japan, the state of knowledge, the number of endemic species, the number of identified but undescribed species, the number of known introduced species, and the number of taxonomic experts and identification guides, with consideration of the general ocean environmental background, such as the physical and geological settings. A total of 33,629 species have been reported to occur in Japanese waters. The state of knowledge was extremely variable, with taxa containing many inconspicuous, smaller species tending to be less well known. The total number of identified but undescribed species was at least 121,913. The total number of described species combined with the number of identified but undescribed species reached 155,542. This is the best estimate of the total number of species in Japanese waters and indicates that more than 70% of Japan's marine biodiversity remains un-described. The number of species reported as introduced into Japanese waters was 39. This is the first attempt to estimate species richness for all marine species in Japanese waters. Although its marine biota can be considered relatively well known, at least within the Asian-Pacific region, considering the vast number of different marine environments such as coral reefs, ocean trenches, ice-bound waters, methane seeps, and hydrothermal vents, much work remains to be done. We expect global change to have a tremendous impact on marine biodiversity and ecosystems. Japan is in a particularly suitable geographic situation and has a lot of facilities for conducting marine science research. Japan has an important responsibility to contribute to our understanding of life in the oceans. PMID:20689840

  13. Biodiversity conservation in running waters

    SciTech Connect

    Allan, J.D. ); Flecker, A.S. )

    1993-01-01

    In the concerns about biodiversity conservation, fresh waters have received less attention than tropical forests and oceans. However, running waters harbor a diverse panoply of species, habitats, and ecosystems, including some of the most threatened and many having great value to human society. An overview of the biological diversity of running waters and the state of imperilment is presented. Six major factors that threaten destruction of running water species and ecosystems are discussed: habitat loss and degradation; species invasions; overharvesting; secondary extinctions; chemical and organic pollution; global climate change. General measures for recovery and restoration of running waters conclude the article.

  14. Parasites as probes for biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Gardner, S L; Campbell, M L

    1992-08-01

    Cestodes of the genus Linstowia, parasitic in marsupials, show patterns of coevolution and ancient historical-ecological connections. Correlated with the breakup of the austral landmasses (Gondwanaland) of the Neotropical and Australian regions from the Antarctic continent, the age of this host-parasite community is estimated to be between 60 and 70 million years old. Based on the data from the survey of parasites of mammals from throughout Bolivia and from the phylogenetic analysis of the cestodes, we urge the planners of biodiversity preserves in the neotropics to consider the Yungas of Bolivia as a region that supports an ancient ecological community worthy of consideration as a biopreserve.

  15. Biodiversity

    SciTech Connect

    Janetos, Anthony C.; Hansen, Lara; Inouye, David; Kelly, Brendan; Meyerson, Laura; Peterson, Bill; Shaw, Rebecca

    2008-05-27

    This synthesis and assessment report bulds on extensive scientific literature and series of recent assessments of the historical and potential impacts of climate change and climate variability on managed and unmanaged ecosystems.

  16. Conserving Biodiversity Efficiently: What to Do, Where, and When

    PubMed Central

    Wilson, Kerrie A; Underwood, Emma C; Morrison, Scott A; Klausmeyer, Kirk R; Murdoch, William W; Reyers, Belinda; Wardell-Johnson, Grant; Marquet, Pablo A; Rundel, Phil W; McBride, Marissa F; Pressey, Robert L; Bode, Michael; Hoekstra, Jon M; Andelman, Sandy; Looker, Michael; Rondinini, Carlo; Kareiva, Peter; Shaw, M. Rebecca; Possingham, Hugh P

    2007-01-01

    Conservation priority-setting schemes have not yet combined geographic priorities with a framework that can guide the allocation of funds among alternate conservation actions that address specific threats. We develop such a framework, and apply it to 17 of the world's 39 Mediterranean ecoregions. This framework offers an improvement over approaches that only focus on land purchase or species richness and do not account for threats. We discover that one could protect many more plant and vertebrate species by investing in a sequence of conservation actions targeted towards specific threats, such as invasive species control, land acquisition, and off-reserve management, than by relying solely on acquiring land for protected areas. Applying this new framework will ensure investment in actions that provide the most cost-effective outcomes for biodiversity conservation. This will help to minimise the misallocation of scarce conservation resources. PMID:17713985

  17. Use of ecoacoustics to determine biodiversity patterns across ecological gradients.

    PubMed

    Grant, Paul B C; Samways, Michael J

    2016-12-01

    The variety of local animal sounds characterizes a landscape. We used ecoacoustics to noninvasively assess the species richness of various biotopes typical of an ecofriendly forest plantation with diverse ecological gradients and both nonnative and indigenous vegetation. The reference area was an adjacent large World Heritage Site protected area (PA). All sites were in a global biodiversity hotspot. Our results showed how taxa segregated into various biotopes. We identified 65 singing species, including birds, frogs, crickets, and katydids. Large, natural, protected grassland sites in the PA had the highest mean acoustic diversity (14.1 species/site). Areas covered in nonnative timber or grass species were devoid of acoustic species. Sites grazed by native and domestic megaherbivores were fairly rich (5.1) in acoustic species but none were unique to this habitat type, where acoustic diversity was greater than in intensively managed grassland sites (0.04). Natural vegetation patches inside the plantation mosaic supported high mean acoustic diversity (indigenous forests 7.6, grasslands 8.0, wetlands 9.1), which increased as plant heterogeneity and patch size increased. Indigenous forest patches within the plantation mosaic contained a highly characteristic acoustic species assemblage, emphasizing their complementary contribution to local biodiversity. Overall, acoustic signals determined spatial biodiversity patterns and can be a useful tool for guiding conservation.

  18. Comparative genomics for biodiversity conservation

    PubMed Central

    Grueber, Catherine E.

    2015-01-01

    Genomic approaches are gathering momentum in biology and emerging opportunities lie in the creative use of comparative molecular methods for revealing the processes that influence diversity of wildlife. However, few comparative genomic studies are performed with explicit and specific objectives to aid conservation of wild populations. Here I provide a brief overview of comparative genomic approaches that offer specific benefits to biodiversity conservation. Because conservation examples are few, I draw on research from other areas to demonstrate how comparing genomic data across taxa may be used to inform the characterisation of conservation units and studies of hybridisation, as well as studies that provide conservation outcomes from a better understanding of the drivers of divergence. A comparative approach can also provide valuable insight into the threatening processes that impact rare species, such as emerging diseases and their management in conservation. In addition to these opportunities, I note areas where additional research is warranted. Overall, comparing and contrasting the genomic composition of threatened and other species provide several useful tools for helping to preserve the molecular biodiversity of the global ecosystem. PMID:26106461

  19. Hydropower, Adaptive Management, and Biodiversity

    PubMed

    WIERINGA; MORTON

    1996-11-01

    / Adaptive management is a policy framework within which an iterative process of decision making is followed based on the observed responses to and effectiveness of previous decisions. The use of adaptive management allows science-based research and monitoring of natural resource and ecological community responses, in conjunction with societal values and goals, to guide decisions concerning man's activities. The adaptive management process has been proposed for application to hydropower operations at Glen Canyon Dam on the Colorado River, a situation that requires complex balancing of natural resources requirements and competing human uses. This example is representative of the general increase in public interest in the operation of hydropower facilities and possible effects on downstream natural resources and of the growing conflicts between uses and users of river-based resources. This paper describes the adaptive management process, using the Glen Canyon Dam example, and discusses ways to make the process work effectively in managing downstream natural resources and biodiversity. KEY WORDS: Adaptive management; Biodiversity; Hydropower; Glen Canyon Dam; Ecology

  20. Anthropic Risk Assessment on Biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Piragnolo, M.; Pirotti, F.; Vettore, A.; Salogni, G.

    2013-01-01

    This paper presents a methodology for risk assessment of anthropic activities on habitats and species. The method has been developed for Veneto Region, in order to simplify and improve the quality of EIA procedure (VINCA). Habitats and species, animals and plants, are protected by European Directive 92/43/EEC and 2009/147/EC but they are subject at hazard due to pollution produced by human activities. Biodiversity risks may conduct to deterioration and disturbance in ecological niches, with consequence of loss of biodiversity. Ecological risk assessment applied on Natura 2000 network, is needed to best practice of management and monitoring of environment and natural resources. Threats, pressure and activities, stress and indicators may be managed by geodatabase and analysed using GIS technology. The method used is the classic risk assessment in ecological context, and it defines the natural hazard as influence, element of risk as interference and vulnerability. Also it defines a new parameter called pressure. It uses risk matrix for the risk analysis on spatial and temporal scale. The methodology is qualitative and applies the precautionary principle in environmental assessment. The final product is a matrix which excludes the risk and could find application in the development of a territorial information system.

  1. River networks as biodiversity hotlines.

    PubMed

    Décamps, Henri

    2011-05-01

    For several years, measures to insure healthy river functions and to protect biodiversity have focused on management at the scale of drainage basins. Indeed, rivers bear witness to the health of their drainage basins, which justifies integrated basin management. However, this vision should not mask two other aspects of the protection of aquatic and riparian biodiversity as well as services provided by rivers. First, although largely depending on the ecological properties of the surrounding terrestrial environment, rivers are ecological systems by themselves, characterized by their linearity: they are organized in connected networks, complex and ever changing, open to the sea. Second, the structure and functions of river networks respond to manipulations of their hydrology, and are particularly vulnerable to climatic variations. Whatever the scale considered, river networks represent "hotlines" for sharing water between ecological and societal systems, as well as for preserving both systems in the face of global change. River hotlines are characterized by spatial as well as temporal legacies: every human impact to a river network may be transmitted far downstream from its point of origin, and may produce effects only after a more or less prolonged latency period. Here, I review some of the current issues of river ecology in light of the linear character of river networks.

  2. Aquatic biodiversity and the electric utility industry

    SciTech Connect

    Olmsted, L.L.; Bolin, J.W.

    1996-11-01

    Results for a 1995 survey of utility company biologists indicate that aquatic biodiversity is an emerging and poorly understood issue. As a result, there is some confusion about what aquatic biodiversity actually is, and how we can best conserve it. Only one fourth (24%) of the respondents said their company has a stated environmental policy that addresses biodiversity. Many respondents indicate that over the years they have not specially managed for biodiversity, but have been doing that through their efforts to assure balanced indigenous populations. While regulations are still the major driver for biological work, an increasing number of companies are involved in voluntary partnerships in managing water resources. Of these voluntary partnerships, 70% have biodiversity as a goal. Biodiversity is becoming an increasingly common subject of study, and a vast majority (75%) of the respondents suggested is should be a goal for utility for resource management. Conservation of aquatic biodiversity is a complex task, and to date most aquatic efforts have been directed toward fish and macroinvertebrates. Ecological research and technological development performed by the utility industry have resulted in a number of successful biopreservation and biorestoration success stories. A common theme to preserving or enhancing aquatic biodiversity is preserving aquatic habitat. Increasingly, ecosystem management is touted as the most likely approach to achieve success in preserving aquatic biodiversity. Several utilities are conducting progressive work in implementing ecosystem management. This paper presents the potential interactions between power plants and biodiversity, and overview of aquatic biodiversity preservations efforts within the electric utility industry, more detail on the results of the survey, and recent initiatives in ecosystem management. 17 refs., 1 tab.

  3. Infrastructural requirements for local implementation of safety policies: the discordance between top-down and bottom-up systems of action

    PubMed Central

    Timpka, Toomas; Nordqvist, Cecilia; Lindqvist, Kent

    2009-01-01

    Background Safety promotion is planned and practised not only by public health organizations, but also by other welfare state agencies, private companies and non-governmental organizations. The term 'infrastructure' originally denoted the underlying resources needed for warfare, e.g. roads, industries, and an industrial workforce. Today, 'infrastructure' refers to the physical elements, organizations and people needed to run projects in different societal arenas. The aim of this study was to examine associations between infrastructure and local implementation of safety policies in injury prevention and safety promotion programs. Methods Qualitative data on municipalities in Sweden designated as Safe Communities were collected from focus group interviews with municipal politicians and administrators, as well as from policy documents, and materials published on the Internet. Actor network theory was used to identify weaknesses in the present infrastructure and determine strategies that can be used to resolve these. Results The weakness identification analysis revealed that the factual infrastructure available for effectuating national strategies varied between safety areas and approaches, basically reflecting differences between bureaucratic and network-based organizational models. At the local level, a contradiction between safety promotion and the existence of quasi-markets for local public service providers was found to predispose for a poor local infrastructure diminishing the interest in integrated inter-agency activities. The weakness resolution analysis showed that development of an adequate infrastructure for safety promotion would require adjustment of the legal framework regulating injury data exchange, and would also require rational financial models for multi-party investments in local infrastructures. Conclusion We found that the "silo" structure of government organization and assignment of resources was a barrier to collaborative action for safety at a

  4. Ephemeral ecological speciation and the latitudinal biodiversity gradient.

    PubMed

    Cutter, Asher D; Gray, Jeremy C

    2016-10-01

    The richness of biodiversity in the tropics compared to high-latitude parts of the world forms one of the most globally conspicuous patterns in biology, and yet few hypotheses aim to explain this phenomenon in terms of explicit microevolutionary mechanisms of speciation and extinction. We link population genetic processes of selection and adaptation to speciation and extinction by way of their interaction with environmental factors to drive global scale macroecological patterns. High-latitude regions are both cradle and grave with respect to species diversification. In particular, we point to a conceptual equivalence of "environmental harshness" and "hard selection" as eco-evolutionary drivers of local adaptation and ecological speciation. By describing how ecological speciation likely occurs more readily at high latitudes, with such nascent species especially prone to extinction by fusion, we derive the ephemeral ecological speciation hypothesis as an integrative mechanistic explanation for latitudinal gradients in species turnover and the net accumulation of biodiversity.

  5. Colloquium paper: engaging the public in biodiversity issues.

    PubMed

    Novacek, Michael J

    2008-08-12

    To engage people in biodiversity and other environmental issues, one must provide the opportunity for enhanced understanding that empowers individuals to make choices and take action based on sound science and reliable recommendations. To this end, we must acknowledge some real challenges. Recent surveys show that, despite growing public concern, environmental issues still rank below many other problems, such as terrorism, health care, the economy, and (in the U.S.) family values. Moreover, much of the recent upswing in interest in the environment is due to the marked shift in attention to global warming away from other environmental problems such as destruction of ecosystems, water pollution, overpopulation, and biodiversity loss. Such a change in public focus often comes with a tendency to decouple various environmental problems and ignore their synergistic effects. Exacerbating this problem are arguments from the media and other sources that discourage public interest in environmental topics by characterizing the science behind them as overly complex, immersed in debate and controversy, and detached from human interests. Educational programming, media, exhibitions, and other means of public outreach should build on the welcome increase in public interest in global warming by demonstrating the interplay of various environmental disruptions. In the case of biodiversity, the importance of species in providing ecosystem services, natural beauty and pleasure, and sustaining human lives is a message that requires constant attention and recrafting to impact diverse audiences.

  6. Biodiversity conservation in agriculture requires a multi-scale approach

    PubMed Central

    Gonthier, David J.; Ennis, Katherine K.; Farinas, Serge; Hsieh, Hsun-Yi; Iverson, Aaron L.; Batáry, Péter; Rudolphi, Jörgen; Tscharntke, Teja; Cardinale, Bradley J.; Perfecto, Ivette

    2014-01-01

    Biodiversity loss—one of the most prominent forms of modern environmental change—has been heavily driven by terrestrial habitat loss and, in particular, the spread and intensification of agriculture. Expanding agricultural land-use has led to the search for strong conservation strategies, with some suggesting that biodiversity conservation in agriculture is best maximized by reducing local management intensity, such as fertilizer and pesticide application. Others highlight the importance of landscape-level approaches that incorporate natural or semi-natural areas in landscapes surrounding farms. Here, we show that both of these practices are valuable to the conservation of biodiversity, and that either local or landscape factors can be most crucial to conservation planning depending on which types of organisms one wishes to save. We performed a quantitative review of 266 observations taken from 31 studies that compared the impacts of localized (within farm) management strategies and landscape complexity (around farms) on the richness and abundance of plant, invertebrate and vertebrate species in agro-ecosystems. While both factors significantly impacted species richness, the richness of sessile plants increased with less-intensive local management, but did not significantly respond to landscape complexity. By contrast, the richness of mobile vertebrates increased with landscape complexity, but did not significantly increase with less-intensive local management. Invertebrate richness and abundance responded to both factors. Our analyses point to clear differences in how various groups of organisms respond to differing scales of management, and suggest that preservation of multiple taxonomic groups will require multiple scales of conservation. PMID:25100703

  7. Biodiversity conservation in agriculture requires a multi-scale approach.

    PubMed

    Gonthier, David J; Ennis, Katherine K; Farinas, Serge; Hsieh, Hsun-Yi; Iverson, Aaron L; Batáry, Péter; Rudolphi, Jörgen; Tscharntke, Teja; Cardinale, Bradley J; Perfecto, Ivette

    2014-09-22

    Biodiversity loss--one of the most prominent forms of modern environmental change--has been heavily driven by terrestrial habitat loss and, in particular, the spread and intensification of agriculture. Expanding agricultural land-use has led to the search for strong conservation strategies, with some suggesting that biodiversity conservation in agriculture is best maximized by reducing local management intensity, such as fertilizer and pesticide application. Others highlight the importance of landscape-level approaches that incorporate natural or semi-natural areas in landscapes surrounding farms. Here, we show that both of these practices are valuable to the conservation of biodiversity, and that either local or landscape factors can be most crucial to conservation planning depending on which types of organisms one wishes to save. We performed a quantitative review of 266 observations taken from 31 studies that compared the impacts of localized (within farm) management strategies and landscape complexity (around farms) on the richness and abundance of plant, invertebrate and vertebrate species in agro-ecosystems. While both factors significantly impacted species richness, the richness of sessile plants increased with less-intensive local management, but did not significantly respond to landscape complexity. By contrast, the richness of mobile vertebrates increased with landscape complexity, but did not significantly increase with less-intensive local management. Invertebrate richness and abundance responded to both factors. Our analyses point to clear differences in how various groups of organisms respond to differing scales of management, and suggest that preservation of multiple taxonomic groups will require multiple scales of conservation.

  8. The Importance of Biodiversity E-infrastructures for Megadiverse Countries.

    PubMed

    Canhos, Dora A L; Sousa-Baena, Mariane S; de Souza, Sidnei; Maia, Leonor C; Stehmann, João R; Canhos, Vanderlei P; De Giovanni, Renato; Bonacelli, Maria B M; Los, Wouter; Peterson, A Townsend

    2015-07-01

    Addressing the challenges of biodiversity conservation and sustainable development requires global cooperation, support structures, and new governance models to integrate diverse initiatives and achieve massive, open exchange of data, tools, and technology. The traditional paradigm of sharing scientific knowledge through publications is not sufficient to meet contemporary demands that require not only the results but also data, knowledge, and skills to analyze the data. E-infrastructures are key in facilitating access to data and providing the framework for collaboration. Here we discuss the importance of e-infrastructures of public interest and the lack of long-term funding policies. We present the example of Brazil's speciesLink network, an e-infrastructure that provides free and open access to biodiversity primary data and associated tools. SpeciesLink currently integrates 382 datasets from 135 national institutions and 13 institutions from abroad, openly sharing ~7.4 million records, 94% of which are associated to voucher specimens. Just as important as the data is the network of data providers and users. In 2014, more than 95% of its users were from Brazil, demonstrating the importance of local e-infrastructures in enabling and promoting local use of biodiversity data and knowledge. From the outset, speciesLink has been sustained through project-based funding, normally public grants for 2-4-year periods. In between projects, there are short-term crises in trying to keep the system operational, a fact that has also been observed in global biodiversity portals, as well as in social and physical sciences platforms and even in computing services portals. In the last decade, the open access movement propelled the development of many web platforms for sharing data. Adequate policies unfortunately did not follow the same tempo, and now many initiatives may perish.

  9. The Importance of Biodiversity E-infrastructures for Megadiverse Countries

    PubMed Central

    Canhos, Dora A. L.; Sousa-Baena, Mariane S.; de Souza, Sidnei; Maia, Leonor C.; Stehmann, João R.; Canhos, Vanderlei P.; De Giovanni, Renato; Bonacelli, Maria B. M.; Los, Wouter; Peterson, A. Townsend

    2015-01-01

    Addressing the challenges of biodiversity conservation and sustainable development requires global cooperation, support structures, and new governance models to integrate diverse initiatives and achieve massive, open exchange of data, tools, and technology. The traditional paradigm of sharing scientific knowledge through publications is not sufficient to meet contemporary demands that require not only the results but also data, knowledge, and skills to analyze the data. E-infrastructures are key in facilitating access to data and providing the framework for collaboration. Here we discuss the importance of e-infrastructures of public interest and the lack of long-term funding policies. We present the example of Brazil’s speciesLink network, an e-infrastructure that provides free and open access to biodiversity primary data and associated tools. SpeciesLink currently integrates 382 datasets from 135 national institutions and 13 institutions from abroad, openly sharing ~7.4 million records, 94% of which are associated to voucher specimens. Just as important as the data is the network of data providers and users. In 2014, more than 95% of its users were from Brazil, demonstrating the importance of local e-infrastructures in enabling and promoting local use of biodiversity data and knowledge. From the outset, speciesLink has been sustained through project-based funding, normally public grants for 2–4-year periods. In between projects, there are short-term crises in trying to keep the system operational, a fact that has also been observed in global biodiversity portals, as well as in social and physical sciences platforms and even in computing services portals. In the last decade, the open access movement propelled the development of many web platforms for sharing data. Adequate policies unfortunately did not follow the same tempo, and now many initiatives may perish. PMID:26204382

  10. Can retention forestry help conserve biodiversity? A meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Fedrowitz, Katja; Koricheva, Julia; Baker, Susan C; Lindenmayer, David B; Palik, Brian; Rosenvald, Raul; Beese, William; Franklin, Jerry F; Kouki, Jari; Macdonald, Ellen; Messier, Christian; Sverdrup-Thygeson, Anne; Gustafsson, Lena

    2014-12-01

    consistent among taxonomic groups for forest and open-habitat species, respectively. Synthesis and applications. Our meta-analysis provides support for wider use of retention forestry since it moderates negative harvesting impacts on biodiversity. Hence, it is a promising approach for integrating biodiversity conservation and production forestry, although identifying optimal solutions between these two goals may need further attention. Nevertheless, retention forestry will not substitute for conservation actions targeting certain highly specialized species associated with forest-interior or open-habitat conditions. Our meta-analysis provides support for wider use of retention forestry since it moderates negative harvesting impacts on biodiversity. Hence, it is a promising approach for integrating biodiversity conservation and production forestry, although identifying optimal solutions between these two goals may need further attention. Nevertheless, retention forestry will not substitute for conservation actions targeting certain highly specialized species associated with forest-interior or open-habitat conditions.

  11. Can retention forestry help conserve biodiversity? A meta-analysis

    PubMed Central

    Fedrowitz, Katja; Koricheva, Julia; Baker, Susan C; Lindenmayer, David B; Palik, Brian; Rosenvald, Raul; Beese, William; Franklin, Jerry F; Kouki, Jari; Macdonald, Ellen; Messier, Christian; Sverdrup-Thygeson, Anne; Gustafsson, Lena

    2014-01-01

    consistent among taxonomic groups for forest and open-habitat species, respectively. Synthesis and applications. Our meta-analysis provides support for wider use of retention forestry since it moderates negative harvesting impacts on biodiversity. Hence, it is a promising approach for integrating biodiversity conservation and production forestry, although identifying optimal solutions between these two goals may need further attention. Nevertheless, retention forestry will not substitute for conservation actions targeting certain highly specialized species associated with forest-interior or open-habitat conditions. Our meta-analysis provides support for wider use of retention forestry since it moderates negative harvesting impacts on biodiversity. Hence, it is a promising approach for integrating biodiversity conservation and production forestry, although identifying optimal solutions between these two goals may need further attention. Nevertheless, retention forestry will not substitute for conservation actions targeting certain highly specialized species associated with forest-interior or open-habitat conditions. PMID:25552747

  12. Does biodiversity protect humans against infectious disease?

    PubMed

    Wood, Chelsea L; Lafferty, Kevin D; DeLeo, Giulio; Young, Hillary S; Hudson, Peter J; Kuris, Armand M

    2014-04-01

    Control of human infectious disease has been promoted as a valuable ecosystem service arising from the conservation of biodiversity. There are two commonly discussed mechanisms by which biodiversity loss could increase rates of infectious disease in a landscape. First, loss of competitors or predators could facilitate an increase in the abundance of competent reservoir hosts. Second, biodiversity loss could disproportionately affect non-competent, or less competent reservoir hosts, which would otherwise interfere with pathogen transmission to human populations by, for example, wasting the bites of infected vectors. A negative association between biodiversity and disease risk, sometimes called the "dilution effect hypothesis," has been supported for a few disease agents, suggests an exciting win-win outcome for the environment and society, and has become a pervasive topic in the disease ecology literature. Case studies have been assembled to argue that the dilution effect is general across disease agents. Less touted are examples in which elevated biodiversity does not affect or increases infectious disease risk for pathogens of public health concern. In order to assess the likely generality of the dilution effect, we review the association between biodiversity and public health across a broad variety of human disease agents. Overall, we hypothesize that conditions for the dilution effect are unlikely to be met for most important diseases of humans. Biodiversity probably has little net effect on most human infectious diseases but, when it does have an effect, observation and basic logic suggest that biodiversity will be more likely to increase than to decrease infectious disease risk.

  13. Great Apes and Biodiversity Offset Projects in Africa: The Case for National Offset Strategies

    PubMed Central

    Kormos, Rebecca; Kormos, Cyril F.; Humle, Tatyana; Lanjouw, Annette; Rainer, Helga; Victurine, Ray; Mittermeier, Russell A.; Diallo, Mamadou S.; Rylands, Anthony B.; Williamson, Elizabeth A.

    2014-01-01

    The development and private sectors are increasingly considering “biodiversity offsets” as a strategy to compensate for their negative impacts on biodiversity, including impacts on great apes and their habitats in Africa. In the absence of national offset policies in sub-Saharan Africa, offset design and implementation are guided by company internal standards, lending bank standards or international best practice principles. We examine four projects in Africa that are seeking to compensate for their negative impacts on great ape populations. Our assessment of these projects reveals that not all apply or implement best practices, and that there is little standardization in the methods used to measure losses and gains in species numbers. Even if they were to follow currently accepted best-practice principles, we find that these actions may still fail to contribute to conservation objectives over the long term. We advocate for an alternative approach in which biodiversity offset and compensation projects are designed and implemented as part of a National Offset Strategy that (1) takes into account the cumulative impacts of development in individual countries, (2) identifies priority offset sites, (3) promotes aggregated offsets, and (4) integrates biodiversity offset and compensation projects with national biodiversity conservation objectives. We also propose supplementary principles necessary for biodiversity offsets to contribute to great ape conservation in Africa. Caution should still be exercised, however, with regard to offsets until further field-based evidence of their effectiveness is available. PMID:25372894

  14. Great apes and biodiversity offset projects in Africa: the case for national offset strategies.

    PubMed

    Kormos, Rebecca; Kormos, Cyril F; Humle, Tatyana; Lanjouw, Annette; Rainer, Helga; Victurine, Ray; Mittermeier, Russell A; Diallo, Mamadou S; Rylands, Anthony B; Williamson, Elizabeth A

    2014-01-01

    The development and private sectors are increasingly considering "biodiversity offsets" as a strategy to compensate for their negative impacts on biodiversity, including impacts on great apes and their habitats in Africa. In the absence of national offset policies in sub-Saharan Africa, offset design and implementation are guided by company internal standards, lending bank standards or international best practice principles. We examine four projects in Africa that are seeking to compensate for their negative impacts on great ape populations. Our assessment of these projects reveals that not all apply or implement best practices, and that there is little standardization in the methods used to measure losses and gains in species numbers. Even if they were to follow currently accepted best-practice principles, we find that these actions may still fail to contribute to conservation objectives over the long term. We advocate for an alternative approach in which biodiversity offset and compensation projects are designed and implemented as part of a National Offset Strategy that (1) takes into account the cumulative impacts of development in individual countries, (2) identifies priority offset sites, (3) promotes aggregated offsets, and (4) integrates biodiversity offset and compensation projects with national biodiversity conservation objectives. We also propose supplementary principles necessary for biodiversity offsets to contribute to great ape conservation in Africa. Caution should still be exercised, however, with regard to offsets until further field-based evidence of their effectiveness is available.

  15. The origins of tropical marine biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Bowen, Brian W; Rocha, Luiz A; Toonen, Robert J; Karl, Stephen A

    2013-06-01

    Recent phylogeographic studies have overturned three paradigms for the origins of marine biodiversity. (i) Physical (allopatric) isolation is not the sole avenue for marine speciation: many species diverge along ecological boundaries. (ii) Peripheral habitats such as oceanic archipelagos are not evolutionary graveyards: these regions can export biodiversity. (iii) Speciation in marine and terrestrial ecosystems follow similar processes but are not the same: opportunities for allopatric isolation are fewer in the oceans, leaving greater opportunity for speciation along ecological boundaries. Biodiversity hotspots such as the Caribbean Sea and the Indo-Pacific Coral Triangle produce and export species, but can also accumulate biodiversity produced in peripheral habitats. Both hotspots and peripheral ecosystems benefit from this exchange in a process dubbed biodiversity feedback.

  16. Focus on biodiversity, health and wellbeing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephens, Carolyn; Athias, Renato

    2015-12-01

    In 2012 Environmental Research Letters (ERL) launched a focus series of research papers on the theme of biodiversity, health and well-being. It was the year of the second Rio Summit on Sustainable Development, a huge number of species had been made extinct and conservationists were making increasingly urgent calls for the protection of biodiversity. The situation is ever more critical. Since we started the issue more species have become extinct, and hundreds more have now become critically endangered. The focus issue highlighted the complexity of the links of biodiversity and health, and provides more evidence for the importance to human health of biodiversity on our planet. Research papers contrasted anthropocentric western scientific views of biodiversity and its ecosystem service to humans, with the more horizontal conceptions of indigenous communities in the Amazon—and as many cultures have recognized throughout history, they recognize that we are part of nature: nature does not exist for us.

  17. Homogenization of regional river dynamics by dams and global biodiversity implications.

    PubMed

    Poff, N Leroy; Olden, Julian D; Merritt, David M; Pepin, David M

    2007-04-03

    Global biodiversity in river and riparian ecosystems is generated and maintained by geographic variation in stream processes and fluvial disturbance regimes, which largely reflect regional differences in climate and geology. Extensive construction of dams by humans has greatly dampened the seasonal and interannual streamflow variability of rivers, thereby altering natural dynamics in ecologically important flows on continental to global scales. The cumulative effects of modification to regional-scale environmental templates caused by dams is largely unexplored but of critical conservation importance. Here, we use 186 long-term streamflow records on intermediate-sized rivers across the continental United States to show that dams have homogenized the flow regimes on third- through seventh-order rivers in 16 historically distinctive hydrologic regions over the course of the 20th century. This regional homogenization occurs chiefly through modification of the magnitude and timing of ecologically critical high and low flows. For 317 undammed reference rivers, no evidence for homogenization was found, despite documented changes in regional precipitation over this period. With an estimated average density of one dam every 48 km of third- through seventh-order river channel in the United States, dams arguably have a continental scale effect of homogenizing regionally distinct environmental templates, thereby creating conditions that favor the spread of cosmopolitan, nonindigenous species at the expense of locally adapted native biota. Quantitative analyses such as ours provide the basis for conservation and management actions aimed at restoring and maintaining native biodiversity and ecosystem function and resilience for regionally distinct ecosystems at continental to global scales.

  18. Evaluating Temporal Consistency in Marine Biodiversity Hotspots

    PubMed Central

    Barner, Allison K.; Benkwitt, Cassandra E.; Boersma, Kate S.; Cerny-Chipman, Elizabeth B.; Ingeman, Kurt E.; Kindinger, Tye L.; Lindsley, Amy J.; Nelson, Jake; Reimer, Jessica N.; Rowe, Jennifer C.; Shen, Chenchen; Thompson, Kevin A.; Heppell, Selina S.

    2015-01-01

    With the ongoing crisis of biodiversity loss and limited resources for conservation, the concept of biodiversity hotspots has been useful in determining conservation priority areas. However, there has been limited research into how temporal variability in biodiversity may influence conservation area prioritization. To address this information gap, we present an approach to evaluate the temporal consistency of biodiversity hotspots in large marine ecosystems. Using a large scale, public monitoring dataset collected over an eight year period off the US Pacific Coast, we developed a methodological approach for avoiding biases associated with hotspot delineation. We aggregated benthic fish species data from research trawls and calculated mean hotspot thresholds for fish species richness and Shannon’s diversity indices over the eight year dataset. We used a spatial frequency distribution method to assign hotspot designations to the grid cells annually. We found no areas containing consistently high biodiversity through the entire study period based on the mean thresholds, and no grid cell was designated as a hotspot for greater than 50% of the time-series. To test if our approach was sensitive to sampling effort and the geographic extent of the survey, we followed a similar routine for the northern region of the survey area. Our finding of low consistency in benthic fish biodiversity hotspots over time was upheld, regardless of biodiversity metric used, whether thresholds were calculated per year or across all years, or the spatial extent for which we calculated thresholds and identified hotspots. Our results suggest that static measures of benthic fish biodiversity off the US West Coast are insufficient for identification of hotspots and that long-term data are required to appropriately identify patterns of high temporal variability in biodiversity for these highly mobile taxa. Given that ecological communities are responding to a changing climate and other

  19. Evaluating Temporal Consistency in Marine Biodiversity Hotspots.

    PubMed

    Piacenza, Susan E; Thurman, Lindsey L; Barner, Allison K; Benkwitt, Cassandra E; Boersma, Kate S; Cerny-Chipman, Elizabeth B; Ingeman, Kurt E; Kindinger, Tye L; Lindsley, Amy J; Nelson, Jake; Reimer, Jessica N; Rowe, Jennifer C; Shen, Chenchen; Thompson, Kevin A; Heppell, Selina S

    2015-01-01

    With the ongoing crisis of biodiversity loss and limited resources for conservation, the concept of biodiversity hotspots has been useful in determining conservation priority areas. However, there has been limited research into how temporal variability in biodiversity may influence conservation area prioritization. To address this information gap, we present an approach to evaluate the temporal consistency of biodiversity hotspots in large marine ecosystems. Using a large scale, public monitoring dataset collected over an eight year period off the US Pacific Coast, we developed a methodological approach for avoiding biases associated with hotspot delineation. We aggregated benthic fish species data from research trawls and calculated mean hotspot thresholds for fish species richness and Shannon's diversity indices over the eight year dataset. We used a spatial frequency distribution method to assign hotspot designations to the grid cells annually. We found no areas containing consistently high biodiversity through the entire study period based on the mean thresholds, and no grid cell was designated as a hotspot for greater than 50% of the time-series. To test if our approach was sensitive to sampling effort and the geographic extent of the survey, we followed a similar routine for the northern region of the survey area. Our finding of low consistency in benthic fish biodiversity hotspots over time was upheld, regardless of biodiversity metric used, whether thresholds were calculated per year or across all years, or the spatial extent for which we calculated thresholds and identified hotspots. Our results suggest that static measures of benthic fish biodiversity off the US West Coast are insufficient for identification of hotspots and that long-term data are required to appropriately identify patterns of high temporal variability in biodiversity for these highly mobile taxa. Given that ecological communities are responding to a changing climate and other

  20. Biodiversity of cryopegs in permafrost.

    PubMed

    Gilichinsky, David; Rivkina, Elizaveta; Bakermans, Corien; Shcherbakova, Viktoria; Petrovskaya, Lada; Ozerskaya, Svetlana; Ivanushkina, Natalia; Kochkina, Galina; Laurinavichuis, Kyastus; Pecheritsina, Svetlana; Fattakhova, Rushania; Tiedje, James M

    2005-06-01

    This study describes the biodiversity of the indigenous microbial community in the sodium-chloride water brines (cryopegs) derived from ancient marine sediments and sandwiched within permafrost 100-120,000 years ago after the Arctic Ocean regression. Cryopegs remain liquid at the in situ temperature of -9 to -11 degrees C and make up the only habitat on the Earth that is characterized by permanently subzero temperatures, high salinity, and the absence of external influence during geological time. From these cryopegs, anaerobic and aerobic, spore-less and spore-forming, halotolerant and halophilic, psychrophilic and psychrotrophic bacteria, mycelial fungi and yeast were isolated and their activity was detected below 0 degrees C.

  1. Biodiversity effects on plant stoichiometry.

    PubMed

    Abbas, Maike; Ebeling, Anne; Oelmann, Yvonne; Ptacnik, Robert; Roscher, Christiane; Weigelt, Alexandra; Weisser, Wolfgang W; Wilcke, Wolfgang; Hillebrand, Helmut

    2013-01-01

    In the course of the biodiversity-ecosystem functioning debate, the issue of multifunctionality of species communities has recently become a major focus. Elemental stoichiometry is related to a variety of processes reflecting multiple plant responses to the biotic and abiotic environment. It can thus be expected that the diversity of a plant assemblage alters community level plant tissue chemistry. We explored elemental stoichiometry in aboveground plant tissue (ratios of carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium) and its relationship to plant diversity in a 5-year study in a large grassland biodiversity experiment (Jena Experiment). Species richness and functional group richness affected community stoichiometry, especially by increasing C:P and N:P ratios. The primacy of either species or functional group richness effects depended on the sequence of testing these terms, indicating that both aspects of richness were congruent and complementary to expected strong effects of legume presence and grass presence on plant chemical composition. Legumes and grasses had antagonistic effects on C:N (-27.7% in the presence of legumes, +32.7% in the presence of grasses). In addition to diversity effects on mean ratios, higher species richness consistently decreased the variance of chemical composition for all elemental ratios. The diversity effects on plant stoichiometry has several non-exclusive explanations: The reduction in variance can reflect a statistical averaging effect of species with different chemical composition or a optimization of nutrient uptake at high diversity, leading to converging ratios at high diversity. The shifts in mean ratios potentially reflect higher allocation to stem tissue as plants grew taller at higher richness. By showing a first link between plant diversity and stoichiometry in a multiyear experiment, our results indicate that losing plant species from grassland ecosystems will lead to less reliable chemical composition of forage for

  2. Agreed but not preferred: expert views on taboo options for biodiversity conservation, given climate change.

    PubMed

    Hagerman, Shannon M; Satterfield, Terre

    2014-04-01

    Recent research indicates increasing openness among conservation experts toward a set of previously controversial proposals for biodiversity protection. These include actions such as assisted migration, and the application of climate-change-informed triage principles for decision-making (e.g., forgoing attention to target species deemed no longer viable). Little is known however, about the levels of expert agreement across different conservation adaptation actions, or the preferences that may come to shape policy recommendations. In this paper, we report findings from a web-based survey of biodiversity experts that assessed: (1) perceived risks of climate change (and other drivers) to biodiversity, (2) relative importance of different conservation goals, (3) levels of agreement/disagreement with the potential necessity of unconventional-taboo actions and approaches including affective evaluations of these, (4) preferences regarding the most important adaptation action for biodiversity, and (5) perceived barriers and strategic considerations regarding implementing adaptation initiatives. We found widespread agreement with a set of previously contentious approaches and actions, including the need for frameworks for prioritization and decision-making that take expected losses and emerging novel ecosystems into consideration. Simultaneously, this survey found enduring preferences for conventional actions (such as protected areas) as the most important policy action, and negative affective responses toward more interventionist proposals. We argue that expert views are converging on agreement across a set of taboo components in ways that differ from earlier published positions, and that these views are tempered by preferences for existing conventional actions and discomfort toward interventionist options. We discuss these findings in the context of anticipating some of the likely contours of future conservation debates. Lastly, we underscore the critical need for

  3. Alterations of action potentials and the localization of Nav1.6 sodium channels in spared axons after hemisection injury of the spinal cord in adult rats.

    PubMed

    Hunanyan, Arsen S; Alessi, Valentina; Patel, Samik; Pearse, Damien D; Matthews, Gary; Arvanian, Victor L

    2011-03-01

    Previously, we reported a pronounced reduction in transmission through surviving axons contralateral to chronic hemisection (HX) of adult rat spinal cord. To examine the cellular and molecular mechanisms responsible for this diminished transmission, we recorded intracellularly from lumbar lateral white matter axons in deeply anesthetized adult rats in vivo and measured the propagation of action potentials (APs) through rubrospinal/reticulospinal tract (RST/RtST) axons contralateral to chronic HX at T10. We found decreased excitability in these axons, manifested by an increased rheobase to trigger APs and longer latency for AP propagation passing the injury level, without significant differences in axonal resting membrane potential and input resistance. These electrophysiological changes were associated with altered spatial localization of Nav1.6 sodium channels along axons: a subset of axons contralateral to the injury exhibited a diffuse localization (>10 μm spread) of Nav1.6 channels, a pattern characteristic of demyelinated axons (Craner MJ, Newcombe J, Black JA, Hartle C, Cuzner ML, Waxman SG. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 101: 8168-8173, 2004b). This result was substantiated by ultrastructural changes seen with electron microscopy, in which an increased number of large-caliber, demyelinated RST axons were found contralateral to the chronic HX. Therefore, an increased rheobase, pathological changes in the distribution of Nav1.6 sodium channels, and the demyelination of contralateral RST axons are likely responsible for their decreased conduction chronically after HX and thus may provide novel targets for strategies to improve function following incomplete spinal cord injury.

  4. Pervasive Defaunation of Forest Remnants in a Tropical Biodiversity Hotspot

    PubMed Central

    Canale, Gustavo R.; Peres, Carlos A.; Guidorizzi, Carlos E.; Gatto, Cassiano A. Ferreira; Kierulff, Maria Cecília M.

    2012-01-01

    Tropical deforestation and forest fragmentation are among the most important biodiversity conservation issues worldwide, yet local extinctions of millions of animal and plant populations stranded in unprotected forest remnants remain poorly explained. Here, we report unprecedented rates of local extinctions of medium to large-bodied mammals in one of the world's most important tropical biodiversity hotspots. We scrutinized 8,846 person-years of local knowledge to derive patch occupancy data for 18 mammal species within 196 forest patches across a 252,669-km2 study region of the Brazilian Atlantic Forest. We uncovered a staggering rate of local extinctions in the mammal fauna, with only 767 from a possible 3,528 populations still persisting. On average, forest patches retained 3.9 out of 18 potential species occupancies, and geographic ranges had contracted to 0–14.4% of their former distributions, including five large-bodied species that had been extirpated at a regional scale. Forest fragments were highly accessible to hunters and exposed to edge effects and fires, thereby severely diminishing the predictive power of species-area relationships, with the power model explaining only ∼9% of the variation in species richness per patch. Hence, conventional species-area curves provided over-optimistic estimates of species persistence in that most forest fragments had lost species at a much faster rate than predicted by habitat loss alone. PMID:22905103

  5. Microbial biodiversity in glacier-fed streams.

    PubMed

    Wilhelm, Linda; Singer, Gabriel A; Fasching, Christina; Battin, Tom J; Besemer, Katharina

    2013-08-01

    While glaciers become increasingly recognised as a habitat for diverse and active microbial communities, effects of their climate change-induced retreat on the microbial ecology of glacier-fed streams remain elusive. Understanding the effect of climate change on microorganisms in these ecosystems is crucial given that microbial biofilms control numerous stream ecosystem processes with potential implications for downstream biodiversity and biogeochemistry. Here, using a space-for-time substitution approach across 26 Alpine glaciers, we show how microbial community composition and diversity, based on 454-pyrosequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, in biofilms of glacier-fed streams may change as glaciers recede. Variations in streamwater geochemistry correlated with biofilm community composition, even at the phylum level. The most dominant phyla detected in glacial habitats were Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Actinobacteria and Cyanobacteria/chloroplasts. Microorganisms from ice had the lowest α diversity and contributed marginally to biofilm and streamwater community composition. Rather, streamwater apparently collected microorganisms from various glacial and non-glacial sources forming the upstream metacommunity, thereby achieving the highest α diversity. Biofilms in the glacier-fed streams had intermediate α diversity and species sorting by local environmental conditions likely shaped their community composition. α diversity of streamwater and biofilm communities decreased with elevation, possibly reflecting less diverse sources of microorganisms upstream in the catchment. In contrast, β diversity of biofilms decreased with increasing streamwater temperature, suggesting that glacier retreat may contribute to the homogenisation of microbial communities among glacier-fed streams.

  6. Aquatic biodiversity assessment for the lazy.

    PubMed

    Hoffmann, Constanze; Schubert, Grit; Calvignac-Spencer, Sébastien

    2016-02-01

    The world is covered in DNA. In any ecosystem, extracellular DNA fragments can be found that once formed the genomes of a variety of micro- and macroorganisms. A few years ago, it was proposed to use this environmental DNA (eDNA) as a source of information on local vertebrate biodiversity (Ficetola et al. 2008; Taberlet et al. 2012). This idea offered an elegant solution to take up the gauntlet of rapidly increasing monitoring needs. Coupled with barcoding efforts, it promised to be cost-efficient in many respects, for example man-hours and taxonomic expertise. Ecologists and conservation biologists with an interest in aquatic ecosystems have enthusiastically adopted and pioneered this new method, producing dozens of eDNA studies. Most of these studies have, however, focused on a single or a few aquatic species. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Valentini et al. (2016) move the field a step further by demonstrating that metabarcoding approaches - which simultaneously target large groups of organisms such as amphibians or fish - can match and sometimes even outperform other inventory methods.

  7. Microbial biodiversity in glacier-fed streams

    PubMed Central

    Wilhelm, Linda; Singer, Gabriel A; Fasching, Christina; Battin, Tom J; Besemer, Katharina

    2013-01-01

    While glaciers become increasingly recognised as a habitat for diverse and active microbial communities, effects of their climate change-induced retreat on the microbial ecology of glacier-fed streams remain elusive. Understanding the effect of climate change on microorganisms in these ecosystems is crucial given that microbial biofilms control numerous stream ecosystem processes with potential implications for downstream biodiversity and biogeochemistry. Here, using a space-for-time substitution approach across 26 Alpine glaciers, we show how microbial community composition and diversity, based on 454-pyrosequencing of the 16S rRNA gene, in biofilms of glacier-fed streams may change as glaciers recede. Variations in streamwater geochemistry correlated with biofilm community composition, even at the phylum level. The most dominant phyla detected in glacial habitats were Proteobacteria, Bacteroidetes, Actinobacteria and Cyanobacteria/chloroplasts. Microorganisms from ice had the lowest α diversity and contributed marginally to biofilm and streamwater community composition. Rather, streamwater apparently collected microorganisms from various glacial and non-glacial sources forming the upstream metacommunity, thereby achieving the highest α diversity. Biofilms in the glacier-fed streams had intermediate α diversity and species sorting by local environmental conditions likely shaped their community composition. α diversity of streamwater and biofilm communities decreased with elevation, possibly reflecting less diverse sources of microorganisms upstream in the catchment. In contrast, β diversity of biofilms decreased with increasing streamwater temperature, suggesting that glacier retreat may contribute to the homogenisation of microbial communities among glacier-fed streams. PMID:23486246

  8. How the Alliance for Climate Education engages national and local partners to achieve collective impact in climate literacy and action (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lappe, M.; Gonzalez, R.; Shanley Hope, S.

    2013-12-01

    The Alliance for Climate Education (ACE) has a mission to educate and inspire young people to break through the challenge of climate change. ACE believes that achieving a safe and stable climate in our lifetime requires the ideas, action and influence of young people. Since 2009, ACE has reached almost 2 million teens in 2,200 schools in over 20 states across the US. In order to support these young people to become leaders in their schools and communities, ACE works closely with local and national partners. In this presentation, ACE will discuss strategic partnerships that have yielded measurable impact and explore how nonprofits, universities, school districts, private companies and government agencies can more effectively align efforts to achieve shared goals. Examples of successful partnerships discussed will include PG&E, Chicago Public Schools, Monterey Bay Aquarium, DC Public Schools, the Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness Network, NOAA, The Next Generation, Los Angeles Public Schools and research universities. ACE will also discuss how research in the field of transformational leadership informs our partnership strategy.

  9. Linking local knowledge with global action: examining the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria through a knowledge system lens.

    PubMed

    van Kerkhoff, Lorrae; Szlezák, Nicole

    2006-08-01

    New global public health institutions are increasingly emphasizing transparency in decision-making, developing-country ownership of projects and programmes, and merit- and performance-based funding. Such principles imply an institutional response to the challenge of bridging the "know-do gap", by basing decisions explicitly on results, evidence and best practice. Using a knowledge systems framework, we examine how the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria has affected the ways in which knowledge is used in efforts to combat these three diseases. We outline the formal knowledge system embedded in current rules and practices associated with the Global Fund's application process, and give three examples that illustrate the complexity of the knowledge system in action: human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) policy in China; successful applications from Haiti; and responses to changing research on malaria. These examples show that the Global Fund has created strong incentives for knowledge to flow to local implementers, but with little encouragement and few structures for the potentially valuable lessons from implementation to flow back to global best practice or research-based knowledge. The Global Fund could play an influential role in fostering much-needed learning from implementation. We suggest that three initial steps are required to start this process: acknowledging shared responsibility for learning across the knowledge system; analysing the Global Fund's existing data (and refining data collection over time); and supporting recipients and technical partners to invest resources in linking implementation with best practice and research.

  10. Linking local knowledge with global action: examining the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria through a knowledge system lens.

    PubMed Central

    van Kerkhoff, Lorrae; Szlezák, Nicole

    2006-01-01

    New global public health institutions are increasingly emphasizing transparency in decision-making, developing-country ownership of projects and programmes, and merit- and performance-based funding. Such principles imply an institutional response to the challenge of bridging the "know-do gap", by basing decisions explicitly on results, evidence and best practice. Using a knowledge systems framework, we examine how the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria has affected the ways in which knowledge is used in efforts to combat these three diseases. We outline the formal knowledge system embedded in current rules and practices associated with the Global Fund's application process, and give three examples that illustrate the complexity of the knowledge system in action: human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) policy in China; successful applications from Haiti; and responses to changing research on malaria. These examples show that the Global Fund has created strong incentives for knowledge to flow to local implementers, but with little encouragement and few structures for the potentially valuable lessons from implementation to flow back to global best practice or research-based knowledge. The Global Fund could play an influential role in fostering much-needed learning from implementation. We suggest that three initial steps are required to start this process: acknowledging shared responsibility for learning across the knowledge system; analysing the Global Fund's existing data (and refining data collection over time); and supporting recipients and technical partners to invest resources in linking implementation with best practice and research. PMID:16917650

  11. Is community-based ecotourism a good use of biodiversity conservation funds?

    PubMed

    Kiss, Agnes

    2004-05-01

    Community-based ecotourism (CBET) has become a popular tool for biodiversity conservation, based on the principle that biodiversity must pay for itself by generating economic benefits, particularly for local people. There are many examples of projects that produce revenues for local communities and improve local attitudes towards conservation, but the contribution of CBET to conservation and local economic development is limited by factors such as the small areas and few people involved, limited earnings, weak linkages between biodiversity gains and commercial success, and the competitive and specialized nature of the tourism industry. Many CBET projects cited as success stories actually involve little change in existing local land and resource-use practices, provide only a modest supplement to local livelihoods, and remain dependent on external support for long periods, if not indefinitely. Investment in CBET might be justified in cases where such small changes and benefits can yield significant conservation and social benefits, although it must still be recognized as requiring a long term funding commitment. Here, I aim to identify conditions under which CBET is, and is not, likely to be effective, efficient and sustainable compared with alternative approaches for conserving biodiversity. I also highlight the need for better data and more rigorous analysis of both conservation and economic impacts.

  12. Incentivizing biodiversity conservation in artisanal fishing communities through territorial user rights and business model innovation.

    PubMed

    Gelcich, Stefan; Donlan, C Josh

    2015-08-01

    Territorial user rights for fisheries are being promoted to enhance the sustainability of small-scale fisheries. Using Chile as a case study, we designed a market-based program aimed at improving fishers' livelihoods while incentivizing the establishment and enforcement of no-take areas within areas managed with territorial user right regimes. Building on explicit enabling conditions (i.e., high levels of governance, participation, and empowerment), we used a place-based, human-centered approach to design a program that will have the necessary support and buy-in from local fishers to result in landscape-scale biodiversity benefits. Transactional infrastructure must be complex enough to capture the biodiversity benefits being created, but simple enough so that the program can be scaled up and is attractive to potential financiers. Biodiversity benefits created must be commoditized, and desired behavioral changes must be verified within a transactional context. Demand must be generated for fisher-created biodiversity benefits in order to attract financing and to scale the market model. Important design decisions around these 3 components-supply, transactional infrastructure, and demand-must be made based on local social-ecological conditions. Our market model, which is being piloted in Chile, is a flexible foundation on which to base scalable opportunities to operationalize a scheme that incentivizes local, verifiable biodiversity benefits via conservation behaviors by fishers that could likely result in significant marine conservation gains and novel cross-sector alliances.

  13. Biodiversity, productivity, and the spatial insurance hypothesis revisited.

    PubMed

    Shanafelt, David W; Dieckmann, Ulf; Jonas, Matthias; Franklin, Oskar; Loreau, Michel; Perrings, Charles

    2015-09-07

    Accelerating rates of biodiversity loss have led ecologists to explore the effects of species richness on ecosystem functioning and the flow of ecosystem services. One explanation of the relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning lies in the spatial insurance hypothesis, which centers on the idea that productivity and stability increase with biodiversity in a temporally varying, spatially heterogeneous environment. However, there has been little work on the impact of dispersal where environmental risks are more or less spatially correlated, or where dispersal rates are variable. In this paper, we extend the original Loreau model to consider stochastic temporal variation in resource availability, which we refer to as "environmental risk", and heterogeneity in species dispersal rates. We find that asynchronies across communities and species provide community-level stabilizing effects on productivity, despite varying levels of species richness. Although intermediate dispersal rates play a role in mitigating risk, they are less effective in insuring productivity against global (metacommunity-level) than local (individual community-level) risks. These results are particularly interesting given the emergence of global sources of risk such as climate change or the closer integration of world markets. Our results offer deeper insights into the Loreau model and new perspectives on the effectiveness of spatial insurance in the face of environmental risks.

  14. Linking indices for biodiversity monitoring to extinction risk theory.

    PubMed

    McCarthy, Michael A; Moore, Alana L; Krauss, Jochen; Morgan, John W; Clements, Christopher F

    2014-12-01

    Biodiversity indices often combine data from different species when used in monitoring programs. Heuristic properties can suggest preferred indices, but we lack objective ways to discriminate between indices with similar heuristics. Biodiversity indices can be evaluated by determining how well they reflect management objectives that a monitoring program aims to support. For example, the Convention on Biological Diversity requires reporting about extinction rates, so simple indices that reflect extinction risk would be valuable. We developed 3 biodiversity indices that are based on simple models of population viability that relate extinction risk to abundance. We based the first index on the geometric mean abundance of species and the second on a more general power mean. In a third index, we integrated the geometric mean abundance and trend. These indices require the same data as previous indices, but they also relate directly to extinction risk. Field data for butterflies and woodland plants and experimental studies of protozoan communities show that the indices correlate with local extinction rates. Applying the index based on the geometric mean to global data on changes in avian abundance suggested that the average extinction probability of birds has increased approximately 1% from 1970 to 2009.

  15. Biodiversity, productivity, and the spatial insurance hypothesis revisited

    PubMed Central

    Shanafelt, David W.; Dieckmann, Ulf; Jonas, Matthias; Franklin, Oskar; Loreau, Michel; Perrings, Charles

    2015-01-01

    Accelerating rates of biodiversity loss have led ecologists to explore the effects of species richness on ecosystem functioning and the flow of ecosystem services. One explanation of the relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning lies in the spatial insurance hypothesis, which centers on the idea that productivity and stability increase with biodiversity in a temporally varying, spatially heterogeneous environment. However, there has been little work on the impact of dispersal where environmental risks are more or less spatially correlated, or where dispersal rates are variable. In this paper, we extend the original Loreau model to consider stochastic temporal variation in resource availability, which we refer to as “environmental risk,” and heterogeneity in species dispersal rates. We find that asynchronies across communities and species provide community-level stabilizing effects on productivity, despite varying levels of species richness. Although intermediate dispersal rates play a role in mitigating risk, they are less effective in insuring productivity against global (metacommunity-level) than local (individual community-level) risks. These results are particularly interesting given the emergence of global sources of risk such as climate change or the closer integration of world markets. Our results offer deeper insights into the Loreau model and new perspectives on the effectiveness of spatial insurance in the face of environmental risks. PMID:26100182

  16. Farmland biodiversity and the footprint of agriculture.

    PubMed

    Butler, S J; Vickery, J A; Norris, K

    2007-01-19

    Sustainable development requires the reconciliation of demands for biodiversity conservation and increased agricultural production. Assessing the impact of novel farming practices on biodiversity and ecosystem services is fundamental to this process. Using farmland birds as a model system, we present a generic risk assessment framework that accurately predicts each species' current conservation status and population growth rate associated with past changes in agriculture. We demonstrate its value by assessing the potential impact on biodiversity of two controversial land uses, genetically modified herbicide-tolerant crops and agri-environment schemes. This framework can be used to guide policy and land management decisions and to assess progress toward sustainability targets.

  17. Marine Biodiversity in the Caribbean: Regional Estimates and Distribution Patterns

    PubMed Central

    Miloslavich, Patricia; Díaz, Juan Manuel; Klein, Eduardo; Alvarado, Juan José; Díaz, Cristina; Gobin, Judith; Escobar-Briones, Elva; Cruz-Motta, Juan José; Weil, Ernesto; Cortés, Jorge; Bastidas, Ana Carolina; Robertson, Ross; Zapata, Fernando; Martín, Alberto; Castillo, Julio; Kazandjian, Aniuska; Ortiz, Manuel

    2010-01-01

    This paper provides an analysis of the distribution patterns of marine biodiversity and summarizes the major activities of the Census of Marine Life program in the Caribbean region. The coastal Caribbean region is a large marine ecosystem (LME) characterized by coral reefs, mangroves, and seagrasses, but including other environments, such as sandy beaches and rocky shores. These tropical ecosystems incorporate a high diversity of associated flora and fauna, and the nations that border the Caribbean collectively encompass a major global marine biodiversity hot spot. We analyze the state of knowledge of marine biodiversity based on the geographic distribution of georeferenced species records and regional taxonomic lists. A total of 12,046 marine species are reported in this paper for the Caribbean region. These include representatives from 31 animal phyla, two plant phyla, one group of Chromista, and three groups of Protoctista. Sampling effort has been greatest in shallow, nearshore waters, where there is relatively good coverage of species records; offshore and deep environments have been less studied. Additionally, we found that the currently accepted classification of marine ecoregions of the Caribbean did not apply for the benthic distributions of five relatively well known taxonomic groups. Coastal species richness tends to concentrate along the Antillean arc (Cuba to the southernmost Antilles) and the northern coast of South America (Venezuela – Colombia), while no pattern can be observed in the deep sea with the available data. Several factors make it impossible to determine the extent to which these distribution patterns accurately reflect the true situation for marine biodiversity in general: (1) highly localized concentrations of collecting effort and a lack of collecting in many areas and ecosystems, (2) high variability among collecting methods, (3) limited taxonomic expertise for many groups, and (4) differing levels of activity in the study of

  18. A landscape ecology approach identifies important drivers of urban biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Turrini, Tabea; Knop, Eva

    2015-04-01

    Cities are growing rapidly worldwide, yet a mechanistic understanding of the impact of urbanization on biodiversity is lacking. We assessed the impact of urbanization on arthropod diversity (species richness and evenness) and abundance in a study of six cities and nearby intensively managed agricultural areas. Within the urban ecosystem, we disentangled the relative importance of two key landscape factors affecting biodiversity, namely the amount of vegetated area and patch isolation. To do so, we a priori selected sites that independently varied in the amount of vegetated area in the surrounding landscape at the 500-m scale and patch isolation at the 100-m scale, and we hold local patch characteristics constant. As indicator groups, we used bugs, beetles, leafhoppers, and spiders. Compared to intensively managed agricultural ecosystems, urban ecosystems supported a higher abundance of most indicator groups, a higher number of bug species, and a lower evenness of bug and beetle species. Within cities, a high amount of vegetated area increased species richness and abundance of most arthropod groups, whereas evenness showed no clear pattern. Patch isolation played only a limited role in urban ecosystems, which contrasts findings from agro-ecological studies. Our results show that urban areas can harbor a similar arthropod diversity and abundance compared to intensively managed agricultural ecosystems. Further, negative consequences of urbanization on arthropod diversity can be mitigated by providing sufficient vegetated space in the urban area, while patch connectivity is less important in an urban context. This highlights the need for applying a landscape ecological approach to understand the mechanisms shaping urban biodiversity and underlines the potential of appropriate urban planning for mitigating biodiversity loss.

  19. Identifying Centres of Plant Biodiversity in South Australia

    PubMed Central

    Guerin, Greg R.; Biffin, Ed; Baruch, Zdravko; Lowe, Andrew J.

    2016-01-01

    We aimed to identify regional centres of plant biodiversity in South Australia, a sub-continental land area of 983,482 km2, by mapping a suite of metrics. Broad-brush conservation issues associated with the centres were mapped, specifically climate sensitivity, exposure to habitat fragmentation, introduced species and altered fire regimes. We compiled 727,417 plant species records from plot-based field surveys and herbarium records and mapped the following: species richness (all species; South Australian endemics; conservation-dependent species; introduced species); georeferenced weighted endemism, phylogenetic diversity, georeferenced phylogenetic endemism; and measures of beta diversity at local and state-wide scales. Associated conservation issues mapped were: climate sensitivity measured via ordination and non-linear modelling; habitat fragmentation represented by the proportion of remnant vegetation within a moving window; fire prone landscapes assessed using fire history records; invasive species assessed through diversity metrics, species distribution and literature. Compared to plots, herbarium data had higher spatial and taxonomic coverage but records were more biased towards major transport corridors. Beta diversity was influenced by sampling intensity and scale of comparison. We identified six centres of high plant biodiversity for South Australia: Western Kangaroo Island; Southern Mount Lofty Ranges; Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara lands; Southern Flinders Ranges; Southern Eyre Peninsula; Lower South East. Species composition in the arid-mediterranean ecotone was the most climate sensitive. Fragmentation mapping highlighted the dichotomy between extensive land-use and high remnancy in the north and intensive land-use and low remnancy in the south. Invasive species were most species rich in agricultural areas close to population centres. Fire mapping revealed large variation in frequency across the state. Biodiversity scores were not always

  20. Marine biodiversity in the Caribbean: regional estimates and distribution patterns.

    PubMed

    Miloslavich, Patricia; Díaz, Juan Manuel; Klein, Eduardo; Alvarado, Juan José; Díaz, Cristina; Gobin, Judith; Escobar-Briones, Elva; Cruz-Motta, Juan José; Weil, Ernesto; Cortés, Jorge; Bastidas, Ana Carolina; Robertson, Ross; Zapata, Fernando; Martín, Alberto; Castillo, Julio; Kazandjian, Aniuska; Ortiz, Manuel

    2010-08-02

    This paper provides an analysis of the distribution patterns of marine biodiversity and summarizes the major activities of the Census of Marine Life program in the Caribbean region. The coastal Caribbean region is a large marine ecosystem (LME) characterized by coral reefs, mangroves, and seagrasses, but including other environments, such as sandy beaches and rocky shores. These tropical ecosystems incorporate a high diversity of associated flora and fauna, and the nations that border the Caribbean collectively encompass a major global marine biodiversity hot spot. We analyze the state of knowledge of marine biodiversity based on the geographic distribution of georeferenced species records and regional taxonomic lists. A total of 12,046 marine species are reported in this paper for the Caribbean region. These include representatives from 31 animal phyla, two plant phyla, one group of Chromista, and three groups of Protoctista. Sampling effort has been greatest in shallow, nearshore waters, where there is relatively good coverage of species records; offshore and deep environments have been less studied. Additionally, we found that the currently accepted classification of marine ecoregions of the Caribbean did not apply for the benthic distributions of five relatively well known taxonomic groups. Coastal species richness tends to concentrate along the Antillean arc (Cuba to the southernmost Antilles) and the northern coast of South America (Venezuela-Colombia), while no pattern can be observed in the deep sea with the available data. Several factors make it impossible to determine the extent to which these distribution patterns accurately reflect the true situation for marine biodiversity in general: (1) highly localized concentrations of collecting effort and a lack of collecting in many areas and ecosystems, (2) high variability among collecting methods, (3) limited taxonomic expertise for many groups, and (4) differing levels of activity in the study of different

  1. Large-area mapping of biodiversity

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Scott, J.M.; Jennings, M.D.

    1998-01-01

    The age of discovery, description, and classification of biodiversity is entering a new phase. In responding to the conservation imperative, we can now supplement the essential work of systematics with spatially explicit information on species and assemblages of species. This is possible because of recent conceptual, technical, and organizational progress in generating synoptic views of the earth's surface and a great deal of its biological content, at multiple scales of thematic as well as geographic resolution. The development of extensive spatial data on species distributions and vegetation types provides us with a framework for: (a) assessing what we know and where we know it at meso-scales, and (b) stratifying the biological universe so that higher-resolution surveys can be more efficiently implemented, coveting, for example, geographic adequacy of specimen collections, population abundance, reproductive success, and genetic dynamics. The land areas involved are very large, and the questions, such as resolution, scale, classification, and accuracy, are complex. In this paper, we provide examples from the United States Gap Analysis Program on the advantages and limitations of mapping the occurrence of terrestrial vertebrate species and dominant land-cover types over large areas as joint ventures and in multi-organizational partnerships, and how these cooperative efforts can be designed to implement results from data development and analyses as on-the-ground actions. Clearly, new frameworks for thinking about biogeographic information as well as organizational cooperation are needed if we are to have any hope of documenting the full range of species occurrences and ecological processes in ways meaningful to their management. The Gap Analysis experience provides one model for achieving these new frameworks.

  2. Optical energy storage and reemission based weak localization of light and accompanying random lasing action in disordered Nd{sup 3+} doped (Pb, La)(Zr, Ti)O{sub 3} ceramics

    SciTech Connect

    Xu, Long; Zhao, Hua; Xu, Caixia; Zhang, Siqi; Zhang, Jingwen

    2014-08-14

    Multi-mode random lasing action and weak localization of light were evidenced and studied in normally transparent but disordered Nd{sup 3+} doped (Pb,La)(Zr,Ti)O{sub 3} ceramics. Noticeable localized zone and multi-photon process were observed under strong pumping power. A tentative phenomenological physical picture was proposed by taking account of diffusive process, photo-induced scattering, and optical energy storage process as dominant factors in elucidating the weak localization of light observed. Both the decreased transmittance (increased reflectivity) of light and the observed long lasting fading-off phenomenon supported the physical picture proposed by us.

  3. Scientific contributions of extensive biodiversity monitoring.

    PubMed

    Couvet, Denis; Devictor, Vincent; Jiguet, Frédéric; Julliard, Romain

    2011-05-01

    To develop a complete and informative biodiversity observation system, it is necessary to compare the strengths and limits of various monitoring schemes. In this article, we examine the various advantages of extensively monitoring fine-grained spatial variations of biodiversity, where the prominent traits of many species within a community (abundance, phenology, etc.) are regularly recorded at numerous sites over a large territory, usually via human observation networks. Linking these variations with environmental factors sheds lights on the major mechanisms leading to changes in biodiversity, thus increasing our knowledge of macroecology and community ecology. This extensive monitoring allows us to assess diffuse effects, contributing to the sound use of the precautionary principle. Combined with site-focused monitoring, information gathered from extensive monitoring provides the raw material necessary to build biodiversity scenarios.

  4. Chemical warfare between microbes promotes biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Czárán, Tamás L.; Hoekstra, Rolf F.; Pagie, Ludo

    2002-01-01

    Evolutionary processes generating biodiversity and ecological mechanisms maintaining biodiversity seem to be diverse themselves. Conventional explanations of biodiversity such as niche differentiation, density-dependent predation pressure, or habitat heterogeneity seem satisfactory to explain diversity in communities of macrobial organisms such as higher plants and animals. For a long time the often high diversity among microscopic organisms in seemingly uniform environments, the famous "paradox of the plankton," has been difficult to understand. The biodiversity in bacterial communities has been shown to be sometimes orders of magnitudes higher than the diversity of known macrobial systems. Based on a spatially explicit game theoretical model with multiply cyclic dominance structures, we suggest that antibiotic interactions within microbial communities may be very effective in maintaining diversity.

  5. Kaitiakitanga: protecting New Zealand's native biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Morad, M; Jay, M

    2000-09-01

    Kaitiakanga is a Maori word meaning guardianship. It is a word that has become central to New Zealand's efforts to conserve native biodiversity as well as encapsulating the new emphasis on inclusion of Maori cultural values and land concerns.

  6. Unravelling biodiversity, evolution and threats to conservation in the Sahara-Sahel.

    PubMed

    Brito, José C; Godinho, Raquel; Martínez-Freiría, Fernando; Pleguezuelos, Juan M; Rebelo, Hugo; Santos, Xavier; Vale, Cândida G; Velo-Antón, Guillermo; Boratyński, Zbyszek; Carvalho, Sílvia B; Ferreira, Sónia; Gonçalves, Duarte V; Silva, Teresa L; Tarroso, Pedro; Campos, João C; Leite, João V; Nogueira, Joana; Alvares, Francisco; Sillero, Neftalí; Sow, Andack S; Fahd, Soumia; Crochet, Pierre-André; Carranza, Salvador

    2014-02-01

    Deserts and arid regions are generally perceived as bare and rather homogeneous areas of low diversity. The Sahara is the largest warm desert in the world and together with the arid Sahel displays high topographical and climatic heterogeneity, and has experienced recent and strong climatic oscillations that have greatly shifted biodiversity distribution and community composition. The large size, remoteness and long-term political instability of the Sahara-Sahel, have limited knowledge on its biodiversity. However, over the last decade, there have been an increasing number of published scientific studies based on modern geomatic and molecular tools, and broad sampling of taxa of these regions. This review tracks trends in knowledge about biodiversity patterns, processes and threats across the Sahara-Sahel, and anticipates needs for biodiversity research and conservation. Recent studies are changing completely the perception of regional biodiversity patterns. Instead of relatively low species diversity with distribution covering most of the region, studies now suggest a high rate of endemism and larger number of species, with much narrower and fragmented ranges, frequently limited to micro-hotspots of biodiversity. Molecular-based studies are also unravelling cryptic diversity associated with mountains, which together with recent distribution atlases, allows identifying integrative biogeographic patterns in biodiversity distribution. Mapping of multivariate environmental variation (at 1 km × 1 km resolution) of the region illustrates main biogeographical features of the Sahara-Sahel and supports recently hypothesised dispersal corridors and refugia. Micro-scale water-features present mostly in mountains have been associated with local biodiversity hotspots. However, the distribution of available data on vertebrates highlights current knowledge gaps that still apply to a large proportion of the Sahara-Sahel. Current research is providing insights into key

  7. Building a discovery partnership with Sarawak Biodiversity Centre: a gateway to access natural products from the rainforests.

    PubMed

    Yeo, Tiong Chia; Naming, Margarita; Manurung, Rita

    2014-03-01

    The Sarawak Biodiversity Centre (SBC) is a state government agency which regulates research and promotes the sustainable use of biodiversity. It has a program on documentation of traditional knowledge (TK) and is well-equipped with facilities for natural product research. SBC maintains a Natural Product Library (NPL) consisting of local plant and microbial extracts for bioprospecting. The NPL is a core discovery platform for screening of bioactive compounds by researchers through a formal agreement with clear benefit sharing obligations. SBC aims to develop partnerships with leading institutions and the industries to explore the benefits of biodiversity.

  8. Biodiversity gains from efficient use of private sponsorship for flagship species conservation.

    PubMed

    Bennett, Joseph R; Maloney, Richard; Possingham, Hugh P

    2015-04-22

    To address the global extinction crisis, both efficient use of existing conservation funding and new sources of funding are vital. Private sponsorship of charismatic 'flagship' species conservation represents an important source of new funding, but has been criticized as being inefficient. However, the ancillary benefits of privately sponsored flagship species conservation via actions benefiting other species have not been quantified, nor have the benefits of incorporating such sponsorship into objective prioritization protocols. Here, we use a comprehensive dataset of conservation actions for the 700 most threatened species in New Zealand to examine the potential biodiversity gains from national private flagship species sponsorship programmes. We find that private funding for flagship species can clearly result in additional species and phylogenetic diversity conserved, via conservation actions shared with other species. When private flagship species funding is incorporated into a prioritization protocol to preferentially sponsor shared actions, expected gains can be more than doubled. However, these gains are consistently smaller than expected gains in a hypothetical scenario where private funding could be optimally allocated among all threatened species. We recommend integrating private sponsorship of flagship species into objective prioritization protocols to sponsor efficient actions that maximize biodiversity gains, or wherever possible, encouraging private donations for broader biodiversity goals.

  9. Biodiversity gains from efficient use of private sponsorship for flagship species conservation

    PubMed Central

    Bennett, Joseph R.; Maloney, Richard; Possingham, Hugh P.

    2015-01-01

    To address the global extinction crisis, both efficient use of existing conservation funding and new sources of funding are vital. Private sponsorship of charismatic ‘flagship’ species conservation represents an important source of new funding, but has been criticized as being inefficient. However, the ancillary benefits of privately sponsored flagship species conservation via actions benefiting other species have not been quantified, nor have the benefits of incorporating such sponsorship into objective prioritization protocols. Here, we use a comprehensive dataset of conservation actions for the 700 most threatened species in New Zealand to examine the potential biodiversity gains from national private flagship species sponsorship programmes. We find that private funding for flagship species can clearly result in additional species and phylogenetic diversity conserved, via conservation actions shared with other species. When private flagship species funding is incorporated into a prioritization protocol to preferentially sponsor shared actions, expected gains can be more than doubled. However, these gains are consistently smaller than expected gains in a hypothetical scenario where private funding could be optimally allocated among all threatened species. We recommend integrating private sponsorship of flagship species into objective prioritization protocols to sponsor efficient actions that maximize biodiversity gains, or wherever possible, encouraging private donations for broader biodiversity goals. PMID:25808885

  10. Restoration enhances wetland biodiversity and ecosystem service supply, but results are context-dependent: a meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Meli, Paula; Rey Benayas, José María; Balvanera, Patricia; Martínez Ramos, Miguel

    2014-01-01

    Wetlands are valuable ecosystems because they harbor a huge biodiversity and provide key services to societies. When natural or human factors degrade wetlands, ecological restoration is often carried out to recover biodiversity and ecosystem services (ES). Although such restorations are routinely performed, we lack systematic, evidence-based assessments of their effectiveness on the recovery of biodiversity and ES. Here we performed a meta-analysis of 70 experimental studies in order to assess the effectiveness of ecological restoration and identify what factors affect it. We compared selected ecosystem performance variables between degraded and restored wetlands and between restored and natural wetlands using response ratios and random-effects categorical modeling. We assessed how context factors such as ecosystem type, main agent of degradation, restoration action, experimental design, and restoration age influenced post-restoration biodiversity and ES. Biodiversity showed excellent recovery, though the precise recovery depended strongly on the type of organisms involved. Restored wetlands showed 36% higher levels of provisioning, regulating and supporting ES than did degraded wetlands. In fact, wetlands showed levels of provisioning and cultural ES similar to those of natural wetlands; however, their levels of supporting and regulating ES were, respectively, 16% and 22% lower than in natural wetlands. Recovery of biodiversity and of ES were positively correlated, indicating a win-win restoration outcome. The extent to which restoration increased biodiversity and ES in degraded wetlands depended primarily on the main agent of degradation, restoration actions, experimental design, and ecosystem type. In contrast, the choice of specific restoration actions alone explained most differences between restored and natural wetlands. These results highlight the importance of comprehensive, multi-factorial assessment to determine the ecological status of degraded, restored

  11. Aquatic biodiversity in forests: A weak link in ecosystem services resilience

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Penaluna, Brooke E.; Olson, Deanna H.; Flitcroft, Rebecca L; Weber, Matthew A.; Bellmore, J. Ryan; Wondzell, Steven M.; Dunham, Jason; Johnson, Sherri L.; Reeves, Gordon H.

    2016-01-01

    The diversity of aquatic ecosystems is being quickly reduced on many continents, warranting a closer examination of the consequences for ecological integrity and ecosystem services. Here we describe intermediate and final ecosystem services derived from aquatic biodiversity in forests. We include a summary of the factors framing the assembly of aquatic biodiversity in forests in natural systems and how they change with a variety of natural disturbances and human-derived stressors. We consider forested aquatic ecosystems as a multi-state portfolio, with diverse assemblages and life-history strategies occurring at local scales as a consequence of a mosaic of habitat conditions and past disturbances and stressors. Maintaining this multi-state portfolio of assemblages requires a broad perspective of ecosystem structure, various functions, services, and management implications relative to contemporary stressors. Because aquatic biodiversity provides multiple ecosystem services to forests, activities that compromise aquatic ecosystems and biodiversity could be an issue for maintaining forest ecosystem integrity. We illustrate these concepts with examples of aquatic biodiversity and ecosystem services in forests of northwestern North America, also known as Northeast Pacific Rim. Encouraging management planning at broad as well as local spatial scales to recognize multi-state ecosystem management goals has promise for maintaining valuable ecosystem services. Ultimately, integration of information from socio-ecological ecosystems will be needed to maintain ecosystem services derived directly and indirectly from forest aquatic biota.

  12. EnviroAtlas - Biodiversity Metrics by 12-digit HUC for the Southwestern United States

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    This EnviroAtlas dataset was produced by a joint effort of New Mexico State University, US EPA, and the US Geological Survey (USGS) to support research and online mapping activities related to EnviroAtlas. Ecosystem services, i.e., services provided to humans from ecological systems, have become a key issue of this century in resource management, conservation planning, and environmental decision analysis. Mapping and quantifying ecosystem services have become strategic national interests for integrating ecology with economics to help understand the effects of human policies and actions and their subsequent impacts on both ecosystem function and human well-being. Some aspects of biodiversity are valued by humans in varied ways, and thus are important to include in any assessment that seeks to identify and quantify the benefits of ecosystems to humans. Some biodiversity metrics clearly reflect ecosystem services (e.g., abundance and diversity of harvestable species), whereas others may reflect indirect and difficult to quantify relationships to services (e.g., relevance of species diversity to ecosystem resilience, or cultural and aesthetic values). Wildlife habitat has been modeled at broad spatial scales and can be used to map a number of biodiversity metrics. We map 15 biodiversity metrics reflecting ecosystem services or other aspects of biodiversity for all vertebrate species except fish. Metrics include species richness for all vertebrates, specific taxon gr

  13. Can Wide Consultation Help with Setting Priorities for Large-Scale Biodiversity Monitoring Programs?

    PubMed Central

    Boivin, Frédéric; Simard, Anouk; Peres-Neto, Pedro

    2014-01-01

    Climate and other global change phenomena affecting biodiversity require monitoring to track ecosystem changes and guide policy and management actions. Designing a biodiversity monitoring program is a difficult task that requires making decisions that often lack consensus due to budgetary constrains. As monitoring programs require long-term investment, they also require strong and continuing support from all interested parties. As such, stakeholder consultation is key to identify priorities and make sound design decisions that have as much support as possible. Here, we present the results of a consultation conducted to serve as an aid for designing a large-scale biodiversity monitoring program for the province of Québec (Canada). The consultation took the form of a survey with 13 discrete choices involving tradeoffs in respect to design priorities and 10 demographic questions (e.g., age, profession). The survey was sent to thousands of individuals having expected interests and knowledge about biodiversity and was completed by 621 participants. Overall, consensuses were few and it appeared difficult to create a design fulfilling the priorities of the majority. Most participants wanted 1) a monitoring design covering the entire territory and focusing on natural habitats; 2) a focus on species related to ecosystem services, on threatened and on invasive species. The only demographic characteristic that was related to the type of prioritization was the declared level of knowledge in biodiversity (null to high), but even then the influence was quite small. PMID:25525798

  14. Can wide consultation help with setting priorities for large-scale biodiversity monitoring programs?

    PubMed

    Boivin, Frédéric; Simard, Anouk; Peres-Neto, Pedro

    2014-01-01

    Climate and other global change phenomena affecting biodiversity require monitoring to track ecosystem changes and guide policy and management actions. Designing a biodiversity monitoring program is a difficult task that requires making decisions that often lack consensus due to budgetary constrains. As monitoring programs require long-term investment, they also require strong and continuing support from all interested parties. As such, stakeholder consultation is key to identify priorities and make sound design decisions that have as much support as possible. Here, we present the results of a consultation conducted to serve as an aid for designing a large-scale biodiversity monitoring program for the province of Québec (Canada). The consultation took the form of a survey with 13 discrete choices involving tradeoffs in respect to design priorities and 10 demographic questions (e.g., age, profession). The survey was sent to thousands of individuals having expected interests and knowledge about biodiversity and was completed by 621 participants. Overall, consensuses were few and it appeared difficult to create a design fulfilling the priorities of the majority. Most participants wanted 1) a monitoring design covering the entire territory and focusing on natural habitats; 2) a focus on species related to ecosystem services, on threatened and on invasive species. The only demographic characteristic that was related to the type of prioritization was the declared level of knowledge in biodiversity (null to high), but even then the influence was quite small.

  15. The marine food chain in relation to biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Price, A R

    2001-10-19

    about by fishing carry even more far-reaching consequences. For example, fishing itself can change the age at which sexual maturity is reached, thus affecting the reproductive status of the stock. Hence, fishing may be regarded as a mediator of evolution. Social impacts include conflicts over fish prices and policies arising from heavy fishing and inadequate institutional structures. Measures to increase the sustainability of catches and of biodiversity need to be much more tightly coupled. Promising approaches include use of bio-economic indicators and fully protected marine areas. High- and local-level governance options are also examined. Use of expert systems incorporating "fuzzy logic" are providing useful environmental insights in the ASEAN countries and other parts of the world, and have applications in fishery management and biodiversity conservation.

  16. Posting Traditional Ecological Knowledge on Open Access Biodiversity Platforms: Implications for Learning Design

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Funk, Johanna; Guthadjaka, Kathy; Kong, Gary

    2015-01-01

    BowerBird is an open platform biodiversity website (http://www.BowerBird.org.au) and a nationally funded project under management of the Atlas of Living Australia (ALA) and Museum Victoria. Members post sightings and information about local species of plants and animals, and record other features of ecosystems. Charles Darwin University's Northern…

  17. Extinction and the spatial dynamics of biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Jablonski, David

    2008-01-01

    The fossil record amply shows that the spatial fabric of extinction has profoundly shaped the biosphere; this spatial dimension provides a powerful context for integration of paleontological and neontological approaches. Mass extinctions evidently alter extinction selectivity, with many factors losing effectiveness except for a positive relation between survivorship and geographic range at the clade level (confirmed in reanalyses of end-Cretaceous extinction data). This relation probably also holds during “normal” times, but changes both slope and intercept with increasing extinction. The strong geographical component to clade dynamics can obscure causation in the extinction of a feature or a clade, owing to hitchhiking effects on geographic range, so that multifactorial analyses are needed. Some extinctions are spatially complex, and regional extinctions might either reset a diversity ceiling or create a diversification debt open to further diversification or invasion. Evolutionary recoveries also exhibit spatial dynamics, including regional differences in invasibilty, and expansion of clades from the tropics fuels at least some recoveries, as well as biodiversity dynamics during normal times. Incumbency effects apparently correlate more closely with extinction intensities than with standing diversities, so that regions with higher local and global extinctions are more subject to invasion; the latest Cenozoic temperate zones evidently received more invaders than the tropics or poles, but this dynamic could shift dramatically if tropical diversity is strongly depleted. The fossil record can provide valuable insights, and their application to present-day issues will be enhanced by partitioning past and present-day extinctions by driving mechanism rather than emphasizing intensity. PMID:18695229

  18. Parasite biodiversity revisited: frontiers and constraints.

    PubMed

    Poulin, Robert

    2014-08-01

    Although parasites are widely touted as representing a large fraction of the Earth's total biodiversity, several questions remain about the magnitude of parasite diversity, our ability to discover it all and how it varies among host taxa or areas of the world. This review addresses four topical issues about parasite diversity. First, we cannot currently estimate how many parasite species there are on Earth with any accuracy, either in relative or absolute terms. Species discovery rates show no sign of slowing down and cryptic parasite species complicate matters further, rendering extrapolation methods useless. Further, expert opinion, which is also used as a means to estimate parasite diversity, is shown here to be prone to serious biases. Second, it seems likely that we may soon not have enough parasite taxonomists to keep up with the description of new species, as taxonomic expertise appears to be limited to a few individuals in the latter stages of their career. Third, we have made great strides toward explaining variation in parasite species richness among host species, by identifying basic host properties that are universal predictors of parasite richness, whatever the type of hosts or parasites. Fourth, in a geographical context, the main driver of variation in parasite species richness across different areas is simply local host species richness; as a consequence, patterns in the spatial variation of parasite species richness tend to match those already well-documented for free-living species. The real value of obtaining good estimates of global parasite diversity is questionable. Instead, our efforts should be focused on ensuring that we maintain sufficient taxonomic resources to keep up with species discovery, and apply what we know of the variation in parasite species richness among host species or across geographical areas to contribute to areas of concern in the ecology of health and in conservation biology.

  19. Conserving tropical biodiversity via market forces and spatial targeting

    PubMed Central

    Bateman, Ian J.; Coombes, Emma; Fitzherbert, Emily; Binner, Amy; Bad’ura, Tomáš; Carbone, Chris; Fisher, Brendan; Naidoo, Robin; Watkinson, Andrew R.

    2015-01-01

    The recent report from the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity [(2010) Global Biodiversity Outlook 3] acknowledges that ongoing biodiversity loss necessitates swift, radical action. Protecting undisturbed lands, although vital, is clearly insufficient, and the key role of unprotected, private land owned is being increasingly recognized. Seeking to avoid common assumptions of a social planner backed by government interventions, the present work focuses on the incentives of the individual landowner. We use detailed data to show that successful conservation on private land depends on three factors: conservation effectiveness (impact on target species), private costs (especially reductions in production), and private benefits (the extent to which conservation activities provide compensation, for example, by enhancing the value of remaining production). By examining the high-profile issue of palm-oil production in a major tropical biodiversity hotspot, we show that the levels of both conservation effectiveness and private costs are inherently spatial; varying the location of conservation activities can radically change both their effectiveness and private cost implications. We also use an economic choice experiment to show that consumers' willingness to pay for conservation-grade palm-oil products has the potential to incentivize private producers sufficiently to engage in conservation activities, supporting vulnerable International Union for Conservation of Nature Red Listed species. However, these incentives vary according to the scale and efficiency of production and the extent to which conservation is targeted to optimize its cost-effectiveness. Our integrated, interdisciplinary approach shows how strategies to harness the power of the market can usefully complement existing—and to-date insufficient—approaches to conservation. PMID:26077906

  20. Conserving tropical biodiversity via market forces and spatial targeting.

    PubMed

    Bateman, Ian J; Coombes, Emma; Fitzherbert, Emily; Binner, Amy; Bad'ura, Tomáš; Carbone, Chris; Fisher, Brendan; Naidoo, Robin; Watkinson, Andrew R

    2015-06-16

    The recent report from the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity [(2010) Global Biodiversity Outlook 3] acknowledges that ongoing biodiversity loss necessitates swift, radical action. Protecting undisturbed lands, although vital, is clearly insufficient, and the key role of unprotected, private land owned is being increasingly recognized. Seeking to avoid common assumptions of a social planner backed by government interventions, the present work focuses on the incentives of the individual landowner. We use detailed data to show that successful conservation on private land depends on three factors: conservation effectiveness (impact on target species), private costs (especially reductions in production), and private benefits (the extent to which conservation activities provide compensation, for example, by enhancing the value of remaining production). By examining the high-profile issue of palm-oil production in a major tropical biodiversity hotspot, we show that the levels of both conservation effectiveness and private costs are inherently spatial; varying the location of conservation activities can radically change both their effectiveness and private cost implications. We also use an economic choice experiment to show that consumers' willingness to pay for conservation-grade palm-oil products has the potential to incentivize private producers sufficiently to engage in conservation activities, supporting vulnerable International Union for Conservation of Nature Red Listed species. However, these incentives vary according to the scale and efficiency of production and the extent to which conservation is targeted to optimize its cost-effectiveness. Our integrated, interdisciplinary approach shows how strategies to harness the power of the market can usefully complement existing--and to-date insufficient--approaches to conservation.

  1. Biodiversity of Jinggangshan Mountain: the importance of topography and geographical location in supporting higher biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Zhou, Ting; Chen, Bao-Ming; Liu, Gang; Huang, Fang-Fang; Liu, Jin-Gang; Liao, Wen-Bo; Wang, Ying-Yong; Ren, Si-Jie; Chen, Chun-Quan; Peng, Shao-Lin

    2015-01-01

    Diversity is mainly determined by climate and environment. In addition, topography is a complex factor, and the relationship between topography and biodiversity is still poorly understood. To understand the role of topography, i.e., altitude and slope, in biodiversity, we selected Jinggangshan Mountain (JGM), an area with unique topography, as the study area. We surveyed plant and animal species richness of JGM and compared the biodiversity and the main geographic characteristics of JGM with the adjacent 4 mountains. Gleason's richness index was calculated to assess the diversity of species. In total, 2958 spermatophyte species, 418 bryophyte species, 355 pteridophyte species and 493 species of vertebrate animals were recorded in this survey. In general, the JGM biodiversity was higher than that of the adjacent mountains. Regarding topographic characteristics, 77% of JGM's area was in the mid-altitude region and approximately 40% of JGM's area was in the 10°-20° slope range, which may support more vegetation types in JGM area and make it a biodiversity hotspot. It should be noted that although the impact of topography on biodiversity was substantial, climate is still a more general factor driving the formation and maintenance of higher biodiversity. Topographic conditions can create microclimates, and both climatic and topographic conditions contribute to the formation of high biodiversity in JGM.

  2. Challenges of Biodiversity Education: A Review of Education Strategies for Biodiversity Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Navarro-Perez, Moramay; Tidball, Keith G.

    2012-01-01

    Biodiversity conservation has increasingly gained recognition in national and international agendas. The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) has positioned biodiversity as a key asset to be protected to ensure our well-being and that of future generations. Nearly 20 years after its inception, results are not as expected, as shown in the…

  3. Data hosting infrastructure for primary biodiversity data

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background Today, an unprecedented volume of primary biodiversity data are being generated worldwide, yet significant amounts of these data have been and will continue to be lost after the conclusion of the projects tasked with collecting them. To get the most value out of these data it is imperative to seek a solution whereby these data are rescued, archived and made available to the biodiversity community. To this end, the biodiversity informatics community requires investment in processes and infrastructure to mitigate data loss and provide solutions for long-term hosting and sharing of biodiversity data. Discussion We review the current state of biodiversity data hosting and investigate the technological and sociological barriers to proper data management. We further explore the rescuing and re-hosting of legacy data, the state of existing toolsets and propose a future direction for the development of new discovery tools. We also explore the role of data standards and licensing in the context of data hosting and preservation. We provide five recommendations for the biodiversity community that will foster better data preservation and access: (1) encourage the community's use of data standards, (2) promote the public domain licensing of data, (3) establish a community of those involved in data hosting and archival, (4) establish hosting centers for biodiversity data, and (5) develop tools for data discovery. Conclusion The community's adoption of standards and development of tools to enable data discovery is essential to sustainable data preservation. Furthermore, the increased adoption of open content licensing, the establishment of data hosting infrastructure and the creation of a data hosting and archiving community are all necessary steps towards the community ensuring that data archival policies become standardized. PMID:22373257

  4. Land Use, climate change and BIOdiversity in cultural landscapes (LUBIO): Assessing feedbacks and promoting land-use strategies towards a viable future

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dullinger, Iwona; Bohner, Andreas; Dullinger, Stefan; Essl, Franz; Gaube, Veronika; Haberl, Helmut; Mayer, Andreas; Plutzar, Christoph; Remesch, Alexander

    2016-04-01

    Land-use and climate change are important, pervasive drivers of global environmental change and pose major threats to global biodiversity. Research to date has mostly focused either on land-use change or on climate change, but rarely on the interactions between both drivers, even though it is expected that systemic feedbacks between changes in climate and land use will have important effects on biodiversity. In particular, climate change will not only alter the pool of plant and animal species capable of thriving in a specific area, it will also force land owners to reconsider their land use decisions. Such changes in land-use practices may have major additional effects on local and regional species composition and abundance. In LUBIO, we will explore the anticipated systemic feedbacks between (1) climate change, (2) land owner's decisions on land use, (3) land-use change, and (4) changes in biodiversity patterns during the coming decades in a regional context which integrates a broad range of land use practices and intensity gradients. To achieve this goal, an integrated socioecological model will be designed and implemented, consisting of three principal components: (1) an agent based model (ABM) that simulates decisions of important actors, (2) a spatially explicit GIS model that translates these decisions into changes in land cover and land use patterns, and (3) a species distribution model (SDM) that calculates changes in biodiversity patterns following from both changes in climate and the land use decisions as simulated in the ABM. Upon integration of these three components, the coupled socioecological model will be used to generate scenarios of future land-use decisions of landowners under climate change and, eventually, the combined effects of climate and land use changes on biodiversity. Model development of the ABM will be supported by a participatory process intended to collect regional and expert knowledge through a series of expert interviews, a series

  5. Habitat structure mediates biodiversity effects on ecosystem properties

    PubMed Central

    Godbold, J. A.; Bulling, M. T.; Solan, M.

    2011-01-01

    Much of what we know about the role of biodiversity in mediating ecosystem processes and function stems from manipulative experiments, which have largely been performed in isolated, homogeneous environments that do not incorporate habitat structure or allow natural community dynamics to develop. Here, we use a range of habitat configurations in a model marine benthic system to investigate the effects of species composition, resource heterogeneity and patch connectivity on ecosystem properties at both the patch (bioturbation intensity) and multi-patch (nutrient concentration) scale. We show that allowing fauna to move and preferentially select patches alters local species composition and density distributions, which has negative effects on ecosystem processes (bioturbation intensity) at the patch scale, but overall positive effects on ecosystem functioning (nutrient concentration) at the multi-patch scale. Our findings provide important evidence that community dynamics alter in response to localized resource heterogeneity and that these small-scale variations in habitat structure influence species contributions to ecosystem properties at larger scales. We conclude that habitat complexity forms an important buffer against disturbance and that contemporary estimates of the level of biodiversity required for maintaining future multi-functional systems may need to be revised. PMID:21227969

  6. Habitat structure mediates biodiversity effects on ecosystem properties.

    PubMed

    Godbold, J A; Bulling, M T; Solan, M

    2011-08-22

    Much of what we know about the role of biodiversity in mediating ecosystem processes and function stems from manipulative experiments, which have largely been performed in isolated, homogeneous environments that do not incorporate habitat structure or allow natural community dynamics to develop. Here, we use a range of habitat configurations in a model marine benthic system to investigate the effects of species composition, resource heterogeneity and patch connectivity on ecosystem properties at both the patch (bioturbation intensity) and multi-patch (nutrient concentration) scale. We show that allowing fauna to move and preferentially select patches alters local species composition and density distributions, which has negative effects on ecosystem processes (bioturbation intensity) at the patch scale, but overall positive effects on ecosystem functioning (nutrient concentration) at the multi-patch scale. Our findings provide important evidence that community dynamics alter in response to localized resource heterogeneity and that these small-scale variations in habitat structure influence species contributions to ecosystem properties at larger scales. We conclude that habitat complexity forms an important buffer against disturbance and that contemporary estimates of the level of biodiversity required for maintaining future multi-functional systems may need to be revised.

  7. Ecology and evolution of mammalian biodiversity

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Kate E.; Safi, Kamran

    2011-01-01

    Mammals have incredible biological diversity, showing extreme flexibility in eco-morphology, physiology, life history and behaviour across their evolutionary history. Undoubtedly, mammals play an important role in ecosystems by providing essential services such as regulating insect populations, seed dispersal and pollination and act as indicators of general ecosystem health. However, the macroecological and macroevolutionary processes underpinning past and present biodiversity patterns are only beginning to be explored on a global scale. It is also particularly important, in the face of the global extinction crisis, to understand these processes in order to be able to use this knowledge to prevent future biodiversity loss and loss of ecosystem services. Unfortunately, efforts to understand mammalian biodiversity have been hampered by a lack of data. New data compilations on current species' distributions, ecologies and evolutionary histories now allow an integrated approach to understand this biodiversity. We review and synthesize these new studies, exploring the past and present ecology and evolution of mammalian biodiversity, and use these findings to speculate about the mammals of our future. PMID:21807728

  8. Mapping and Quantifying Terrestrial Vertebrate Biodiversity at ...

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    The ability to assess, report, map, and forecast functions of ecosystems is critical to our capacity to make informed decisions to maintain the sustainable nature of our environment. Because of the variability among living organisms and levels of organization (e.g. genetic, species, ecosystem), biodiversity has always been difficult to measure precisely, especially within a systematic manner and over multiple scales. In answer to this challenge, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has created a partnership with other Federal agencies, academic institutions, and Non-Governmental Organizations to develop the EnviroAtlas (https://www.epa.gov/enviroatlas), an online national Decision Support Tool that allows users to view and analyze the geographical description of the supply and demand for ecosystem services, as well as the drivers of change. As part of the EnviroAtlas, an approach has been developed that uses deductive habitat models for all terrestrial vertebrates of the conterminous United States and clusters them into biodiversity metrics that relate to ecosystem service-relevant categories. Metrics, such as species and taxon richness, have been developed and integrated with other measures of biodiversity. Collectively, these metrics provide a consistent scalable process from which to make geographic comparisons, provide thematic assessments, and to monitor status and trends in biodiversity. The national biodiversity component operates across approximatel

  9. Species ages in neutral biodiversity models.

    PubMed

    Chisholm, Ryan A; O'Dwyer, James P

    2014-05-01

    Biogeography seeks to understand the mechanisms that drive biodiversity across long temporal and large spatial scales. Theoretical models of biogeography can be tested by comparing their predictions of quantities such as species ages against empirical estimates. It has previously been claimed that the neutral theory of biodiversity and biogeography predicts species ages that are unrealistically long. Any improved theory of biodiversity must rectify this problem, but first it is necessary to quantify the problem precisely. Here we provide analytical expressions for species ages in neutral biodiversity communities. We analyse a spatially implicit metacommunity model and solve for both the zero-sum and non-zero-sum cases. We explain why our new expressions are, in the context of biodiversity, usually more appropriate than those previously imported from neutral molecular evolution. Because of the time symmetry of the spatially implicit neutral model, our expressions also lead directly to formulas for species persistence times and species lifetimes. We use our new expressions to estimate species ages of forest trees under a neutral model and find that they are about an order of magnitude shorter than those predicted previously but still unrealistically long. In light of our results, we discuss different models of biogeography that may solve the problem of species ages.

  10. Biotic immigration events, speciation, and the accumulation of biodiversity in the fossil record

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stigall, Alycia L.; Bauer, Jennifer E.; Lam, Adriane R.; Wright, David F.

    2017-01-01

    Biotic Immigration Events (BIMEs) record the large-scale dispersal of taxa from one biogeographic area to another and have significantly impacted biodiversity throughout geologic time. BIMEs associated with biodiversity increases have been linked to ecologic and evolutionary processes including niche partitioning, species packing, and higher speciation rates. Yet substantial biodiversity decline has also been documented following BIMEs due to elevated extinction and/or reduced speciation rates. In this review, we develop a conceptual model for biodiversity accumulation that links BIMEs and geographic isolation with local (α) diversity, regional (β) diversity, and global (γ) diversity metrics. Within the model, BIME intervals are characterized by colonization of existing species within new geographic regions and a lack of successful speciation events. Thus, there is no change in γ-diversity, and α-diversity increases at the cost of β-diversity. An interval of regional isolation follows in which lineage splitting results in successful speciation events and diversity increases across all three metrics. Alternation of these two regimes can result in substantial biodiversity accumulation. We tested this conceptual model using a series of case studies from the paleontological record. We primarily focus on two intervals during the Middle through Late Ordovician Period (470-458 Ma): the globally pervasive BIMEs during the Great Ordovician Biodiversification Event (GOBE) and a regional BIME, the Richmondian Invasion. We further test the conceptual model by examining the Great Devonian Interchange, Neogene mollusk migrations and diversification, and the Great American Biotic Interchange. Paleontological data accord well with model predictions. Constraining the mechanisms of biodiversity accumulation provides context for conservation biology. Because α-, β-, and γ-diversity are semi-independent, different techniques should be considered for sustaining various

  11. Collateral biodiversity benefits associated with 'free-market' approaches to sustainable land use and forestry activities.

    PubMed

    Koziell, Izabella; Swingland, Ian R

    2002-08-15

    Concern over the ever more rapid and widespread losses of biodiversity has instigated various remedial actions: whether in situ conservation, such as the establishment of protected areas, or ex situ, such as the conservation of germplasm in gene banks. In the past, such activities were funded and managed by the public sector; however, in recent years, public support has declined and this has spawned a growing interest in conservation opportunities that might arise from 'free-market' approaches to sustainable land use and management. The UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is the key framework for articulating policies and actions on biodiversity; however, progress in developing suitable economic and market incentives for biodiversity conservation and its sustainable use has been slow, with activities such as bioprospecting and ecotourism making some, albeit limited, headway. Given the United Nations Framework for Climate Change or United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change's (UNFCCC's) high profile within the public and private sectors, there is some potential for using it to help advance CBD objectives and provide the much-needed economic incentives for conservation, through some of the market-based mechanisms presented under the Kyoto Protocol. Significant potential lies in the fact that many 'natural' forests and certain other ecosystems are both major stores of carbon and areas of valuable biodiversity. Thus, any attempt at conserving these areas has the potential to yield both carbon and biodiversity benefits. So far, however, the conservation of natural forests is not included in the Kyoto Protocol's definition of sinks. Instead the creation of sinks - through the establishment of fast-growing monocultures - may well lead to biodiversity losses, especially if partly degraded lands are cleared for this purpose. If real progress is to be made, our understanding of the relationship between land use and biodiversity benefits needs to be

  12. Biodiversity and Archeological Conservation Connected: Aragonite Shell Middens Increase Plant Diversity.

    PubMed

    Vanderplank, Sula E; Mata, Sergio; Ezcurra, Exequiel

    2014-03-01

    Natural and cultural heritage sites frequently have nonoverlapping or even conflicting conservation priorities, because human impacts have often resulted in local extirpations and reduced levels of native biodiversity. Over thousands of years, the predictable winter rains of northwestern Baja California have weathered calcium from the clam shells deposited by indigenous peoples in middens along the coast. The release of this calcium has changed soil properties, remediated sodic and saline soils, and resulted in a unique microhabitat that harbors plant assemblages very different from those of the surrounding matrix. Native plant biodiversity and landscape heterogeneity are significantly increased on the anthropogenic soils of these shell middens. Protection of this cultural landscape in the Anthropocene will further both archeological and biodiversity conservation in these anthropogenic footprints from the Holocene. Along these coasts, natural and cultural heritage priorities are overlapping and mutually beneficial.

  13. Biodiversity and Archeological Conservation Connected: Aragonite Shell Middens Increase Plant Diversity

    PubMed Central

    Vanderplank, Sula E.; Mata, Sergio; Ezcurra, Exequiel

    2014-01-01

    Natural and cultural heritage sites frequently have nonoverlapping or even conflicting conservation priorities, because human impacts have often resulted in local extirpations and reduced levels of native biodiversity. Over thousands of years, the predictable winter rains of northwestern Baja California have weathered calcium from the clam shells deposited by indigenous peoples in middens along the coast. The release of this calcium has changed soil properties, remediated sodic and saline soils, and resulted in a unique microhabitat that harbors plant assemblages very different from those of the surrounding matrix. Native plant biodiversity and landscape heterogeneity are significantly increased on the anthropogenic soils of these shell middens. Protection of this cultural landscape in the Anthropocene will further both archeological and biodiversity conservation in these anthropogenic footprints from the Holocene. Along these coasts, natural and cultural heritage priorities are overlapping and mutually beneficial. PMID:26955068

  14. Traditional Cattle Grazing in a Mosaic Alkali Landscape: Effects on Grassland Biodiversity along a Moisture Gradient

    PubMed Central

    Török, Péter; Valkó, Orsolya; Deák, Balázs; Kelemen, András; Tóthmérész, Béla

    2014-01-01

    Extensively managed pastures are of crucial importance in sustaining biodiversity both in local- and landscape-level. Thus, re-introduction of traditional grazing management is a crucial issue in grassland conservation actions worldwide. Traditional grazing with robust cattle breeds in low stocking rates is considered to be especially useful to mimic natural grazing regimes, but well documented case-studies are surprisingly rare on this topic. Our goal was to evaluate the effectiveness of traditional Hungarian Grey cattle grazing as a conservation action in a mosaic alkali landscape. We asked the following questions: (i) How does cattle grazing affect species composition and diversity of the grasslands? (ii) What are the effects of grazing on short-lived and perennial noxious species? (iii) Are there distinct effects of grazing in dry-, mesophilous- and wet grassland types? Vegetation of fenced and grazed plots in a 200-ha sized habitat complex (secondary dry grasslands and pristine mesophilous- and wet alkali grasslands) was sampled from 2006–2009 in East-Hungary. We found higher diversity scores in grazed plots compared to fenced ones in mesophilous- and wet grasslands. Higher cover of noxious species was typical in fenced plots compared to their grazed counterparts in the last year in every studied grassland type. We found an increasing effect of grazing from the dry- towards the wet grassland types. The year-to-year differences also followed similar pattern: the site-dependent effects were the lowest in the dry grassland and an increasing effect was detected along the moisture gradient. We found that extensive Hungarian Grey cattle grazing is an effective tool to suppress noxious species and to create a mosaic vegetation structure, which enables to maintain high species richness in the landscape. Hungarian Grey cattle can feed in open habitats along long moisture gradient, thus in highly mosaic landscapes this breed can be the most suitable livestock type

  15. Traditional cattle grazing in a mosaic alkali landscape: effects on grassland biodiversity along a moisture gradient.

    PubMed

    Török, Péter; Valkó, Orsolya; Deák, Balázs; Kelemen, András; Tóthmérész, Béla

    2014-01-01

    Extensively managed pastures are of crucial importance in sustaining biodiversity both in local- and landscape-level. Thus, re-introduction of traditional grazing management is a crucial issue in grassland conservation actions worldwide. Traditional grazing with robust cattle breeds in low stocking rates is considered to be especially useful to mimic natural grazing regimes, but well documented case-studies are surprisingly rare on this topic. Our goal was to evaluate the effectiveness of traditional Hungarian Grey cattle grazing as a conservation action in a mosaic alkali landscape. We asked the following questions: (i) How does cattle grazing affect species composition and diversity of the grasslands? (ii) What are the effects of grazing on short-lived and perennial noxious species? (iii) Are there distinct effects of grazing in dry-, mesophilous- and wet grassland types? Vegetation of fenced and grazed plots in a 200-ha sized habitat complex (secondary dry grasslands and pristine mesophilous- and wet alkali grasslands) was sampled from 2006-2009 in East-Hungary. We found higher diversity scores in grazed plots compared to fenced ones in mesophilous- and wet grasslands. Higher cover of noxious species was typical in fenced plots compared to their grazed counterparts in the last year in every studied grassland type. We found an increasing effect of grazing from the dry- towards the wet grassland types. The year-to-year differences also followed similar pattern: the site-dependent effects were the lowest in the dry grassland and an increasing effect was detected along the moisture gradient. We found that extensive Hungarian Grey cattle grazing is an effective tool to suppress noxious species and to create a mosaic vegetation structure, which enables to maintain high species richness in the landscape. Hungarian Grey cattle can feed in open habitats along long moisture gradient, thus in highly mosaic landscapes this breed can be the most suitable livestock type.

  16. Plate tectonics drive tropical reef biodiversity dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leprieur, Fabien; Descombes, Patrice; Gaboriau, Théo; Cowman, Peter F.; Parravicini, Valeriano; Kulbicki, Michel; Melián, Carlos J.; de Santana, Charles N.; Heine, Christian; Mouillot, David; Bellwood, David R.; Pellissier, Loïc

    2016-05-01

    The Cretaceous breakup of Gondwana strongly modified the global distribution of shallow tropical seas reshaping the geographic configuration of marine basins. However, the links between tropical reef availability, plate tectonic processes and marine biodiversity distribution patterns are still unknown. Here, we show that a spatial diversification model constrained by absolute plate motions for the past 140 million years predicts the emergence and movement of diversity hotspots on tropical reefs. The spatial dynamics of tropical reefs explains marine fauna diversification in the Tethyan Ocean during the Cretaceous and early Cenozoic, and identifies an eastward movement of ancestral marine lineages towards the Indo-Australian Archipelago in the Miocene. A mechanistic model based only on habitat-driven diversification and dispersal yields realistic predictions of current biodiversity patterns for both corals and fishes. As in terrestrial systems, we demonstrate that plate tectonics played a major role in driving tropical marine shallow reef biodiversity dynamics.

  17. Biodiversity and Resilience of Ecosystem Functions.

    PubMed

    Oliver, Tom H; Heard, Matthew S; Isaac, Nick J B; Roy, David B; Procter, Deborah; Eigenbrod, Felix; Freckleton, Rob; Hector, Andy; Orme, C David L; Petchey, Owen L; Proença, Vânia; Raffaelli, David; Suttle, K Blake; Mace, Georgina M; Martín-López, Berta; Woodcock, Ben A; Bullock, James M

    2015-11-01

    Accelerating rates of environmental change and the continued loss of global biodiversity threaten functions and services delivered by ecosystems. Much ecosystem monitoring and management is focused on the provision of ecosystem functions and services under current environmental conditions, yet this could lead to inappropriate management guidance and undervaluation of the importance of biodiversity. The maintenance of ecosystem functions and services under substantial predicted future environmental change (i.e., their 'resilience') is crucial. Here we identify a range of mechanisms underpinning the resilience of ecosystem functions across three ecological scales. Although potentially less important in the short term, biodiversity, encompassing variation from within species to across landscapes, may be crucial for the longer-term resilience of ecosystem functions and the services that they underpin.

  18. Novel urban ecosystems, biodiversity, and conservation.

    PubMed

    Kowarik, Ingo

    2011-01-01

    With increasing urbanization the importance of cities for biodiversity conservation grows. This paper reviews the ways in which biodiversity is affected by urbanization and discusses the consequences of different conservation approaches. Cities can be richer in plant species, including in native species, than rural areas. Alien species can lead to both homogenization and differentiation among urban regions. Urban habitats can harbor self-sustaining populations of rare and endangered native species, but cannot replace the complete functionality of (semi-)natural remnants. While many conservation approaches tend to focus on such relict habitats and native species in urban settings, this paper argues for a paradigm shift towards considering the whole range of urban ecosystems. Although conservation attitudes may be challenged by the novelty of some urban ecosystems, which are often linked to high numbers of nonnative species, it is promising to consider their associated ecosystem services, social benefits, and possible contribution to biodiversity conservation.

  19. Plate tectonics drive tropical reef biodiversity dynamics.

    PubMed

    Leprieur, Fabien; Descombes, Patrice; Gaboriau, Théo; Cowman, Peter F; Parravicini, Valeriano; Kulbicki, Michel; Melián, Carlos J; de Santana, Charles N; Heine, Christian; Mouillot, David; Bellwood, David R; Pellissier, Loïc

    2016-05-06

    The Cretaceous breakup of Gondwana strongly modified the global distribution of shallow tropical seas reshaping the geographic configuration of marine basins. However, the links between tropical reef availability, plate tectonic processes and marine biodiversity distribution patterns are still unknown. Here, we show that a spatial diversification model constrained by absolute plate motions for the past 140 million years predicts the emergence and movement of diversity hotspots on tropical reefs. The spatial dynamics of tropical reefs explains marine fauna diversification in the Tethyan Ocean during the Cretaceous and early Cenozoic, and identifies an eastward movement of ancestral marine lineages towards the Indo-Australian Archipelago in the Miocene. A mechanistic model based only on habitat-driven diversification and dispersal yields realistic predictions of current biodiversity patterns for both corals and fishes. As in terrestrial systems, we demonstrate that plate tectonics played a major role in driving tropical marine shallow reef biodiversity dynamics.

  20. Molecular biodiversity of Red Sea demosponges.

    PubMed

    Erpenbeck, Dirk; Voigt, Oliver; Al-Aidaroos, Ali M; Berumen, Michael L; Büttner, Gabriele; Catania, Daniela; Guirguis, Adel Naguib; Paulay, Gustav; Schätzle, Simone; Wörheide, Gert

    2016-04-30

    Sponges are important constituents of coral reef ecosystems, including those around the Arabian Peninsula. Despite their importance, our knowledge on demosponge diversity in this area is insufficient to recognize, for example, faunal changes caused by anthropogenic disturbances. We here report the first assessment of demosponge molecular biodiversity from Arabia, with focus on the Saudi Arabian Red Sea, based on mitochondrial and nuclear ribosomal molecular markers gathered in the framework of the Sponge Barcoding Project. We use a rapid molecular screening approach on Arabian demosponge collections and analyze results in comparison against published material in terms of biodiversity. We use a variable region of 28S rDNA, applied for the first time in the assessment of demosponge molecular diversity. Our data constitutes a solid foundation for a future more comprehensive understanding of sponge biodiversity of the Red Sea and adjacent waters.

  1. How will oil palm expansion affect biodiversity?

    PubMed

    Fitzherbert, Emily B; Struebig, Matthew J; Morel, Alexandra; Danielsen, Finn; Brühl, Carsten A; Donald, Paul F; Phalan, Ben

    2008-10-01

    Oil palm is one of the world's most rapidly increasing crops. We assess its contribution to tropical deforestation and review its biodiversity value. Oil palm has replaced large areas of forest in Southeast Asia, but land-cover change statistics alone do not allow an assessment of where it has driven forest clearance and where it has simply followed it. Oil palm plantations support much fewer species than do forests and often also fewer than other tree crops. Further negative impacts include habitat fragmentation and pollution, including greenhouse gas emissions. With rising demand for vegetable oils and biofuels, and strong overlap between areas suitable for oil palm and those of most importance for biodiversity, substantial biodiversity losses will only be averted if future oil palm expansion is managed to avoid deforestation.

  2. Plate tectonics drive tropical reef biodiversity dynamics

    PubMed Central

    Leprieur, Fabien; Descombes, Patrice; Gaboriau, Théo; Cowman, Peter F.; Parravicini, Valeriano; Kulbicki, Michel; Melián, Carlos J.; de Santana, Charles N.; Heine, Christian; Mouillot, David; Bellwood, David R.; Pellissier, Loïc

    2016-01-01

    The Cretaceous breakup of Gondwana strongly modified the global distribution of shallow tropical seas reshaping the geographic configuration of marine basins. However, the links between tropical reef availability, plate tectonic processes and marine biodiversity distribution patterns are still unknown. Here, we show that a spatial diversification model constrained by absolute plate motions for the past 140 million years predicts the emergence and movement of diversity hotspots on tropical reefs. The spatial dynamics of tropical reefs explains marine fauna diversification in the Tethyan Ocean during the Cretaceous and early Cenozoic, and identifies an eastward movement of ancestral marine lineages towards the Indo-Australian Archipelago in the Miocene. A mechanistic model based only on habitat-driven diversification and dispersal yields realistic predictions of current biodiversity patterns for both corals and fishes. As in terrestrial systems, we demonstrate that plate tectonics played a major role in driving tropical marine shallow reef biodiversity dynamics. PMID:27151103

  3. Biodiversity and biogeography of the atmosphere

    PubMed Central

    Womack, Ann M.; Bohannan, Brendan J. M.; Green, Jessica L.

    2010-01-01

    The variation of life has predominantly been studied on land and in water, but this focus is changing. There is a resurging interest in the distribution of life in the atmosphere and the processes that underlie patterns in this distribution. Here, we review our current state of knowledge about the biodiversity and biogeography of the atmosphere, with an emphasis on micro-organisms, the numerically dominant forms of aerial life. We present evidence to suggest that the atmosphere is a habitat for micro-organisms, and not purely a conduit for terrestrial and aquatic life. Building on a rich history of research in terrestrial and aquatic systems, we explore biodiversity patterns that are likely to play an important role in the emerging field of air biogeography. We discuss the possibility of a more unified understanding of the biosphere, one that links knowledge about biodiversity and biogeography in the lithosphere, hydrosphere and atmosphere. PMID:20980313

  4. Biodiversity analysis in the digital era.

    PubMed

    La Salle, John; Williams, Kristen J; Moritz, Craig

    2016-09-05

    This paper explores what the virtual biodiversity e-infrastructure will look like as it takes advantage of advances in 'Big Data' biodiversity informatics and e-research infrastructure, which allow integration of various taxon-level data types (genome, morphology, distribution and species interactions) within a phylogenetic and environmental framework. By overcoming the data scaling problem in ecology, this integrative framework will provide richer information and fast learning to enable a deeper understanding of biodiversity evolution and dynamics in a rapidly changing world. The Atlas of Living Australia is used as one example of the advantages of progressing towards this future. Living in this future will require the adoption of new ways of integrating scientific knowledge into societal decision making.This article is part of the themed issue 'From DNA barcodes to biomes'.

  5. Biodiversity analysis in the digital era

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    This paper explores what the virtual biodiversity e-infrastructure will look like as it takes advantage of advances in ‘Big Data’ biodiversity informatics and e-research infrastructure, which allow integration of various taxon-level data types (genome, morphology, distribution and species interactions) within a phylogenetic and environmental framework. By overcoming the data scaling problem in ecology, this integrative framework will provide richer information and fast learning to enable a deeper understanding of biodiversity evolution and dynamics in a rapidly changing world. The Atlas of Living Australia is used as one example of the advantages of progressing towards this future. Living in this future will require the adoption of new ways of integrating scientific knowledge into societal decision making. This article is part of the themed issue ‘From DNA barcodes to biomes’. PMID:27481789

  6. Effects of pond draining on biodiversity and water quality of farm ponds.

    PubMed

    Usio, Nisikawa; Imada, Miho; Nakagawa, Megumi; Akasaka, Munemitsu; Takamura, Noriko

    2013-12-01

    Farm ponds have high conservation value because they contribute significantly to regional biodiversity and ecosystem services. In Japan pond draining is a traditional management method that is widely believed to improve water quality and eradicate invasive fish. In addition, fishing by means of pond draining has significant cultural value for local people, serving as a social event. However, there is a widespread belief that pond draining reduces freshwater biodiversity through the extirpation of aquatic animals, but scientific evaluation of the effectiveness of pond draining is lacking. We conducted a large-scale field study to evaluate the effects of pond draining on invasive animal control, water quality, and aquatic biodiversity relative to different pond-management practices, pond physicochemistry, and surrounding land use. The results of boosted regression-tree models and analyses of similarity showed that pond draining had little effect on invasive fish control, water quality, or aquatic biodiversity. Draining even facilitated the colonization of farm ponds by invasive red swamp crayfish (Procambarus clarkii), which in turn may have detrimental effects on the biodiversity and water quality of farm ponds. Our results highlight the need for reconsidering current pond management and developing management plans with respect to multifunctionality of such ponds. Efectos del Drenado de Estanques sobre la Biodiversidad y la Calidad del Agua en Estanques de Cultivo.

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

    PubMed

    Bombin, Andrei; Reed, Laura K

    2016-10-01

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

  8. Genomic biodiversity, phylogenetics, and coevolution in proteins

    PubMed Central

    Pollock, David D

    2010-01-01

    Comprehensive sampling of genomic biodiversity is fast becoming a reality for some genomic regions and complete organelle genomes. Genomic biodiversity is defined as large genomic sequences from many species, and here some recent work is reviewed that demonstrates the potential benefits of genomic biodiversity for molecular evolutionary analysis and phylogenetic reconstruction. This work shows that using likelihood-based approaches, taxon addition can dramatically improve phylogenetic reconstruction. Features or dynamics of the evolutionary process are much more easily inferred with large numbers of taxa, and large numbers are essential for discriminating differences in evolutionary patterns between sites. Accurate prediction of site-specific patterns can improve phylogenetic reconstruction by an amount equivalent to quadrupling sequence length. Genomic biodiversity is particularly central to research relating patterns of evolution, adaptation and coevolution to structural and functional features of proteins. Research on detecting coevolution between amino acid residues in proteins demonstrates a clear need for much greater numbers of closely related taxa to better discriminate site-specific patterns of interaction, and to allow more detailed analysis of coevolutionary interactions between subunits in protein complexes. It is argued that parsing out coevolutionary and other context-dependent substitution probabilities is essential for discriminating between coevolution and adaptation, and for more realistically modelling the evolution of proteins. Also reviewed is research that argues for increasing the efficiency of acquiring genomic biodiversity, and suggests that this might be done by simultaneously shotgun cloning and sequencing genomic mixtures from many species. Increased efficiency is a prerequisite if genomic biodiversity levels are to rapidly increase by orders of magnitude, and thus lead to dramatically improved understanding of interactions between

  9. Impact of GM crops on biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Carpenter, Janet E

    2011-01-01

    The potential impact of GM crops on biodiversity has been a topic of interest both in general as well as specifically in the context of the Convention on Biological Diversity. Agricultural biodiversity has been defined at levels from genes to ecosystems that are involved or impacted by agricultural production (www.cbd.int/agro/whatis.shtml). After fifteen years of commercial cultivation, a substantial body of literature now exists addressing the potential impacts of GM crops on the environment. This review takes a biodiversity lens to this literature, considering the impacts at three levels: the crop, farm and landscape scales. Within that framework, this review covers potential impacts of the introduction of genetically engineered crops on: crop diversity, biodiversity of wild relatives, non-target soil organisms, weeds, land use, non-target above-ground organisms, and area-wide pest suppression. The emphasis of the review is peer-reviewed literature that presents direct measures of impacts on biodiversity. In addition, possible impacts of changes in management practises such as tillage and pesticide use are also discussed to complement the literature on direct measures. The focus of the review is on technologies that have been commercialized somewhere in the world, while results may emanate from non-adopting countries and regions. Overall, the review finds that currently commercialized GM crops have reduced the impacts of agriculture on biodiversity, through enhanced adoption of conservation tillage practices, reduction of insecticide use and use of more environmentally benign herbicides and increasing yields to alleviate pressure to convert additional land into agricultural use.

  10. Biodiversity Can Help Prevent Malaria Outbreaks in Tropical Forests

    PubMed Central

    Laporta, Gabriel Zorello; de Prado, Paulo Inácio Knegt Lopez; Kraenkel, Roberto André; Coutinho, Renato Mendes; Sallum, Maria Anice Mureb

    2013-01-01

    Background Plasmodium vivax is a widely distributed, neglected parasite that can cause malaria and death in tropical areas. It is associated with an estimated 80–300 million cases of malaria worldwide. Brazilian tropical rain forests encompass host- and vector-rich communities, in which two hypothetical mechanisms could play a role in the dynamics of malaria transmission. The first mechanism is the dilution effect caused by presence of wild warm-blooded animals, which can act as dead-end hosts to Plasmodium parasites. The second is diffuse mosquito vector competition, in which vector and non-vector mosquito species compete for blood feeding upon a defensive host. Considering that the World Health Organization Malaria Eradication Research Agenda calls for novel strategies to eliminate malaria transmission locally, we used mathematical modeling to assess those two mechanisms in a pristine tropical rain forest, where the primary vector is present but malaria is absent. Methodology/Principal Findings The Ross–Macdonald model and a biodiversity-oriented model were parameterized using newly collected data and data from the literature. The basic reproduction number () estimated employing Ross–Macdonald model indicated that malaria cases occur in the study location. However, no malaria cases have been reported since 1980. In contrast, the biodiversity-oriented model corroborated the absence of malaria transmission. In addition, the diffuse competition mechanism was negatively correlated with the risk of malaria transmission, which suggests a protective effect provided by the forest ecosystem. There is a non-linear, unimodal correlation between the mechanism of dead-end transmission of parasites and the risk of malaria transmission, suggesting a protective effect only under certain circumstances (e.g., a high abundance of wild warm-blooded animals). Conclusions/Significance To achieve biological conservation and to eliminate Plasmodium parasites in human populations

  11. Evaluating biodiversity conservation around a large Sumatran protected area.

    PubMed

    Linkie, Matthew; Smith, Robert J; Zhu, Yu; Martyr, Deborah J; Suedmeyer, Beth; Pramono, Joko; Leader-Williams, Nigel

    2008-06-01

    Many of the large, donor-funded community-based conservation projects that seek to reduce biodiversity loss in the tropics have been unsuccessful. There is, therefore, a need for empirical evaluations to identify the driving factors and to provide evidence that supports the development of context-specific conservation projects. We used a quantitative approach to measure, post hoc, the effectiveness of a US$19 million Integrated Conservation and Development Project (ICDP) that sought to reduce biodiversity loss through the development of villages bordering Kerinci Seblat National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Indonesia. We focused on the success of the ICDP component that disbursed a total of US$1.5 million through development grants to 66 villages in return for their commitment to stop illegally clearing the forest. To investigate whether the ICDP lowered deforestation rates in focal villages, we selected a subset of non-ICDP villages that had similar physical and socioeconomic features and compared their respective deforestation rates. Village participation in the ICDP and its development schemes had no effect on deforestation. Instead, accessible areas where village land-tenure had been undermined by the designation of selective-logging concessions tended to have the highest deforestation rates. Our results indicate that the goal of the ICDP was not met and, furthermore, suggest that both law enforcement inside the park and local property rights outside the park need to be strengthened. Our results also emphasize the importance of quantitative approaches in helping to inform successful and cost-effective strategies for tropical biodiversity conservation.

  12. Engineering novel habitats on urban infrastructure to increase intertidal biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Chapman, M G; Blockley, D J

    2009-09-01

    Urbanization replaces natural shorelines with built infrastructure, seriously impacting species living on these "new" shores. Understanding the ecology of developed shorelines and reducing the consequences of urban development to fauna and flora cannot advance by simply documenting changes to diversity. It needs a robust experimental programme to develop ways in which biodiversity can be sustained in urbanized environments. There have, however, been few such experiments despite wholesale changes to shorelines in urbanized areas. Seawalls--the most extensive artificial infrastructure--are generally featureless, vertical habitats that support reduced levels of local biodiversity. Here, a mimic of an important habitat on natural rocky shores (rock-pools) was experimentally added to a seawall and its impact on diversity assessed. The mimics created shaded vertical substratum and pools that retained water during low tide. These novel habitats increased diversity of foliose algae and sessile and mobile animals, especially higher on the shore. Many species that are generally confined to lowshore levels, expanded their distribution over a greater tidal range. In fact, there were more species in the constructed pools than in natural pools of similar size on nearby shores. There was less effect on the abundances of mobile animals, which may be due to the limited time available for recruitment, or because these structures did not provide appropriate habitat. With increasing anthropogenic intrusion into natural areas and concomitant loss of species, it is essential to learn how to build urban infrastructure that can maintain or enhance biodiversity while meeting societal and engineering criteria. Success requires melding engineering skills and ecological understanding. This paper demonstrates one cost-effective way of addressing this important issue for urban infrastructure affecting nearshore habitats.

  13. International trade drives biodiversity threats in developing nations.

    PubMed

    Lenzen, M; Moran, D; Kanemoto, K; Foran, B; Lobefaro, L; Geschke, A

    2012-06-06

    Human activities are causing Earth's sixth major extinction event-an accelerating decline of the world's stocks of biological diversity at rates 100 to 1,000 times pre-human levels. Historically, low-impact intrusion into species habitats arose from local demands for food, fuel and living space. However, in today's increasingly globalized economy, international trade chains accelerate habitat degradation far removed from the place of consumption. Although adverse effects of economic prosperity and economic inequality have been confirmed, the importance of international trade as a driver of threats to species is poorly understood. Here we show that a significant number of species are threatened as a result of international trade along complex routes, and that, in particular, consumers in developed countries cause threats to species through their demand of commodities that are ultimately produced in developing countries. We linked 25,000 Animalia species threat records from the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List to more than 15,000 commodities produced in 187 countries and evaluated more than 5 billion supply chains in terms of their biodiversity impacts. Excluding invasive species, we found that 30% of global species threats are due to international trade. In many developed countries, the consumption of imported coffee, tea, sugar, textiles, fish and other manufactured items causes a biodiversity footprint that is larger abroad than at home. Our results emphasize the importance of examining biodiversity loss as a global systemic phenomenon, instead of looking at the degrading or polluting producers in isolation. We anticipate that our findings will facilitate better regulation, sustainable supply-chain certification and consumer product labelling.

  14. Cenozoic biodiversity: goals, challenges and future prospects

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lazarus, David

    2014-05-01

    Understanding biodiversity is a major goal of modern science. Biologists document living diversity; study the factors that maintain it, and the effects biodiversity has on ecosystem services. Paleontologists try to understand these same issues by examining biodiversity in the geologic past, and how this history correlates to changes in past environments. Both research agendas are driven by concerns about how biodiversity can be sustained into the future, despite human impacts on biodiversity, including climate change. Measuring biodiversity is a major challenge. Generally only a subset of the total diversity that exist(s/ed) at any one location can actually be recorded, due to rarity of many species, or (for fossils) species that were not preserved. Taxa occurrence data not collected for biodiversity studies is also frequently incompletely recorded. Incomplete, inconsistent taxonomy; and for fossils also incorrect geologic ages for observations are other major sources of error. Several different methods are used to correct for these problems, such as subsampling occurrence data or using expert-compiled taxonomic catalogs. No method is normally fully satisfactory, but, depending on data quality, can often yield useful approximations of actual (usually relative) diversity. Assuming that diversity has been accurately estimated, a second challenge comes in comparing diversity to possible causal factors. A common approach is a statistical comparison between diversity and environmental data series. Whether this is a meaningful exercise depends on the underlying statistical model, and whether this is similar to the processes that we are trying to understand. If for example, we suspect diversity to respond largely only when environmental thresholds are crossed, a linear regression test is not very informative. Our understanding of possible processes is however still primitive, and a poor guide to model selection and analysis. Scale is also important (temporal, geographic

  15. Entangled judgments: expert preferences for adapting biodiversity conservation to climate change.

    PubMed

    Hagerman, Shannon M; Satterfield, Terre

    2013-11-15

    A major challenge facing conservation experts is how to adapt biodiversity planning and practice to the impacts of climate change. To date, most commonly advocated adaptation actions mirror conventional approaches (e.g. protected areas) despite decades of concern regarding their efficacy and widespread discussion of less conventional, interventionist actions. This survey of 160 experts (scientists and practitioners with specialized knowledge of the implications of climate change for biodiversity conservation) seeks to explain this deep incongruity. Specifically, we quantify current preferences for a diverse set of adaptation actions, and examine the choice logics that underpin them. We find near unanimous agreement in principle with the need for extensive active management and restoration interventions given climate change. However, when interventionist actions are provided as options alongside conventional actions, experts overwhelming prefer the latter. Four hypotheses, developed by linking the conservation adaptation literature with that of preference formation and risk and decision making, explore enduring preferences for conventional actions. They are (1) judged most ecologically effective, least risky and best understood; (2) linked with pro-ecological worldviews, marked by positive affective feelings, and an aversion to the hubris of managing nature; (3) a function of trust in biodiversity governance; and/or (4) driven by demographic factors such as gender. Overall, we find that experts prefer conventional over unconventional actions because they are viewed as relatively more effective and less risky from an ecological point of view, and because they are linked with positive affect ratings, and worldviews that are strongly pro-ecological. We discuss the roles of value-based and affective cues in shaping policy outcomes for adaptation specifically, and sustainable resource management more broadly.

  16. Biodiversity conservation and indigenous land management in the era of self-determination.

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Paige M; Peterson, Markus J

    2009-12-01

    Indigenous people inhabit approximately 85% of areas designated for biodiversity conservation worldwide. They also continue to struggle for recognition and preservation of cultural identities, lifestyles, and livelihoods--a struggle contingent on control and protection of traditional lands and associated natural resources (hereafter, self-determination). Indigenous lands and the biodiversity they support are increasingly threatened because of human population growth and per capita consumption. Application of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) to tribal lands in the United States provides a rich example of the articulation between biodiversity conservation and indigenous peoples' struggle for self-determination. We found a paradoxical relationship whereby tribal governments are simultaneously and contradictory sovereign nations; yet their communities depend on the U.S. government for protection through the federal-trust doctrine. The unique legal status of tribal lands, their importance for conserving federally protected species, and federal environmental regulations' failure to define applicability to tribal lands creates conflict between tribal sovereignty, self-determination, and constitutional authority. We reviewed Secretarial Order 3206, the U.S. policy on "American Indian tribal rights, federal-tribal trust responsibilities, and the ESA," and evaluated how it influences ESA implementation on tribal lands. We found improved biodiversity conservation and tribal self-determination requires revision of the fiduciary relationship between the federal government and the tribes to establish clear, legal definitions regarding land rights, applicability of environmental laws, and financial responsibilities. Such actions will allow provision of adequate funding and training to tribal leaders and resource managers, government agency personnel responsible for biodiversity conservation and land management, and environmental policy makers. Increased capacity, cooperation, and

  17. Why and how might genetic and phylogenetic diversity be reflected in the identification of key biodiversity areas?

    PubMed

    Brooks, T M; Cuttelod, A; Faith, D P; Garcia-Moreno, J; Langhammer, P; Pérez-Espona, S

    2015-02-19

    'Key biodiversity areas' are defined as sites contributing significantly to the global persistence of biodiversity. The identification of these sites builds from existing approaches based on measures of species and ecosystem diversity and process. Here, we therefore build from the work of Sgró et al. (2011 Evol. Appl. 4, 326-337. (doi:10.1111/j.1752-4571.2010.00157.x)) to extend a framework for how components of genetic diversity might be considered in the identification of key biodiversity areas. We make three recommendations to inform the ongoing process of consolidating a key biodiversity areas standard: (i) thresholds for the threatened species criterion currently consider a site's share of a threatened species' population; expand these to include the proportion of the species' genetic diversity unique to a site; (ii) expand criterion for 'threatened species' to consider 'threatened taxa' and (iii) expand the centre of endemism criterion to identify as key biodiversity areas those sites holding a threshold proportion of the compositional or phylogenetic diversity of species (within a taxonomic group) whose restricted ranges collectively define a centre of endemism. We also recommend consideration of occurrence of EDGE species (i.e. threatened phylogenetic diversity) in key biodiversity areas to prioritize species-specific conservation actions among sites.

  18. Why and how might genetic and phylogenetic diversity be reflected in the identification of key biodiversity areas?

    PubMed Central

    Brooks, T. M.; Cuttelod, A.; Faith, D. P.; Garcia-Moreno, J.; Langhammer, P.; Pérez-Espona, S.

    2015-01-01

    ‘Key biodiversity areas' are defined as sites contributing significantly to the global persistence of biodiversity. The identification of these sites builds from existing approaches based on measures of species and ecosystem diversity and process. Here, we therefore build from the work of Sgró et al. (2011 Evol. Appl. 4, 326–337. (doi:10.1111/j.1752-4571.2010.00157.x)) to extend a framework for how components of genetic diversity might be considered in the identification of key biodiversity areas. We make three recommendations to inform the ongoing process of consolidating a key biodiversity areas standard: (i) thresholds for the threatened species criterion currently consider a site's share of a threatened species' population; expand these to include the proportion of the species' genetic diversity unique to a site; (ii) expand criterion for ‘threatened species' to consider ‘threatened taxa’ and (iii) expand the centre of endemism criterion to identify as key biodiversity areas those sites holding a threshold proportion of the compositional or phylogenetic diversity of species (within a taxonomic group) whose restricted ranges collectively define a centre of endemism. We also recommend consideration of occurrence of EDGE species (i.e. threatened phylogenetic diversity) in key biodiversity areas to prioritize species-specific conservation actions among sites. PMID:25561678

  19. Local School Board Members Need Quality Public Information That Informs Decisions, Empowers Action. Don't Make Decisions in the Dark

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Data Quality Campaign, 2014

    2014-01-01

    Local school board members need to be able to access and use high-quality data to make good decisions. Often this data is collected and stored locally, but information that is publicly reported by the state can provide additional value. Most state public reporting is designed to serve information needs, and are geared toward compliance with state…

  20. Biodiversity enhances ecosystem multifunctionality across trophic levels and habitats.

    PubMed

    Lefcheck, Jonathan S; Byrnes, Jarrett E K; Isbell, Forest; Gamfeldt, Lars; Griffin, John N; Eisenhauer, Nico; Hensel, Marc J S; Hector, Andy; Cardinale, Bradley J; Duffy, J Emmett

    2015-04-24

    The importance of biodiversity for the integrated functioning of ecosystems remains unclear because most evidence comes from analyses of biodiversity's effect on individual functions. Here we show that the effects of biodiversity on ecosystem function become more important as more functions are considered. We present the first systematic investigation of biodiversity's effect on ecosystem multifunctionality across multiple taxa, trophic levels and habitats using a comprehensive database of 94 manipulations of species richness. We show that species-rich communities maintained multiple functions at higher levels than depauperate ones. These effects were stronger for herbivore biodiversity than for plant biodiversity, and were remarkably consistent across aquatic and terrestrial habitats. Despite observed tradeoffs, the overall effect of biodiversity on multifunctionality grew stronger as more functions were considered. These results indicate that prior research has underestimated the importance of biodiversity for ecosystem functioning by focusing on individual functions and taxonomic groups.

  1. Biodiversity increases the resistance of ecosystem productivity to climate extremes

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    It remains unclear whether biodiversity buffers ecosystems against extreme climate events, which are becoming increasingly frequent worldwide. Although early results suggested that biodiversity might provide both resistance and resilience (sensu rapid recovery) of ecosystem productivity to drought, ...

  2. Core issues in the economics of biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Tisdell, Clement A

    2011-02-01

    Economic evaluations are essential for assessing the desirability of biodiversity conservation. This article highlights significant advances in theories and methods of economic evaluation and their relevance and limitations as a guide to biodiversity conservation; considers the implications of the phylogenetic similarity principle for the survival of species; discusses consequences of the Noah's Ark problem for selecting features of biodiversity to be saved; analyzes the extent to which the precautionary principle can be rationally used to support the conservation of biodiversity; explores the impact of market extensions, market and other institutional failures, and globalization on biodiversity loss; examines the relationship between the rate of interest and biodiversity depletion; and investigates the implications of intergenerational equity for biodiversity conservation. The consequences of changes in biodiversity for sustainable development are given particular attention.

  3. Deforestation and threats to the biodiversity of Amazonia.

    PubMed

    Vieira, I C G; Toledo, P M; Silva, J M C; Higuchi, H

    2008-11-01

    This is a review of the main factors currently perceived as threats to the biodiversity of Amazonia. Deforestation and the expansion of the agricultural frontier go hand in hand within the context of occupation and land use in the region, followed by a hasty process of industrialization since the 1950s and, more recently, by a nation-wide attempt to adapt Brazil to economic globalization. Intensive agriculture and cattle-raising, lack of territorial planning, the monoculture of certain crops often promoted by official agencies, and the introduction of exotic species by cultivation are some of the factors affecting Amazonian biodiversity. There are still large gaps in knowledge that need to be dealt with for a better understanding of the local ecosystems so as to allow their preservation, but such investigation is subjected to manifold hindrances by misinformation, disinformation and sheer ignorance from the legal authorities and influential media. Data available for select groups of organisms indicate that the magnitude of the loss and waste of natural resources associated with deforestation is staggering, with estimated numbers of lost birds and primates being over ten times that of such animals illegally commercialized around the world in one year. The challenges to be met for an eventual reversal of this situation demand more systematic and concerted studies, the consolidation of new and existing research groups, and a call for a halt to activities depleting the Amazonian rainforest.

  4. On Public Influence on People's Interactions with Ordinary Biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Skandrani, Zina; Daniel, Lucie; Jacquelin, Lauriane; Leboucher, Gérard; Bovet, Dalila; Prévot, Anne-Caroline

    2015-01-01

    Besides direct impacts of urban biodiversity on local ecosystem services, the contact of city dwellers with urban nature in their everyday life could increase their awareness on conservation issues. In this paper, we focused on a particularly common animal urban species, the feral pigeon Columba livia. Through an observational approach, we examined behavioral interactions between city dwellers and this species in the Paris metropolis, France. We found that most people (mean: 81%) do not interact with pigeons. Further, interactions (either positive or negative) are context and age-dependent: children interact more than adults and the elderly, while people in tourist spots interact more than people in urban parks or in railway stations, a result that suggests that people interacting with pigeons are mostly tourists. We discuss these results in terms of public normative pressures on city dwellers' access to and reconnection with urban nature. We call for caution in how urban species are publically portrayed and managed, given the importance of interactions with ordinary biodiversity for the fate of nature conservation.

  5. Biodiversity and biogeography of Antarctic and sub-Antarctic mollusca

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Linse, Katrin; Griffiths, Huw J.; Barnes, David K. A.; Clarke, Andrew

    2006-04-01

    For many decades molluscan data have been critical to the establishment of the concept of a global-scale increase in species richness from the poles to the equator. Low polar diversity is key to this latitudinal cline in diversity. Here we investigate richness patterns in the two largest classes of molluscs at both local and regional scales throughout the Southern Ocean. We show that biodiversity is very patchy in the Southern Ocean (at the 1000-km scale) and test the validity of historical biogeographic sub-regions and provinces. We used multivariate analysis of biodiversity patterns at species, genus and family levels to define richness hotspots within the Southern Ocean and transition areas. This process identified the following distinct sub-regions in the Southern Ocean: Antarctic Peninsula, Weddell Sea, East Antarctic—Dronning Maud Land, East Antarctic—Enderby Land, East Antarctic—Wilkes Land, Ross Sea, and the independent Scotia arc and sub Antarctic islands. Patterns of endemism were very different between the bivalves and gastropods. On the basis of distributional ranges and radiation centres of evolutionarily successful families and genera we define three biogeographic provinces in the Southern Ocean: (1) the continental high Antarctic province excluding the Antarctic Peninsula, (2) the Scotia Sea province including the Antarctic Peninsula, and (3) the sub Antarctic province comprising the islands in the vicinity of the Antarctic Circumpolar Current.

  6. Microcosms metacommunities in river network: niche effects and biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Giometto, A.; Carrara, F.; Altermatt, F.; Rinaldo, A.

    2012-04-01

    Many highly diverse landscapes exhibit hierarchical spatial structures that are shaped by geomorphological processes. Riverine ecosystems, among the most diverse habitats on Earth, represent an outstanding example of such mechanisms. In these landscapes, in which connectivity directly influences metacommunity processes, habitat capacity contributes to control biodiversity at several levels. A previous study has already highlighted the effect of connectivity on species distribution at local and regional scales, but habitat capacity was kept uniform. We studied the interaction of connectivity and habitat capacity in an aquatic microcosm experiment, in which microbial communities were grown in 36-well culture plates connected by dispersal. Dispersal occurred by periodic transfer of culture medium among connected local communities, following river network topology. The effect of habitat capacity in these landscapes was investigated by comparing three different spatial configurations of local community volumes: 1. Power law distributed volumes, according to drainage area. 2. Spatial random permutation of the volumes in the above configuration. 3. Equal distribution of volumes (preserving the total volume with respect to the above configurations). The net effect of habitat capacity on community composition was isolated in a control treatment in which communities were kept isolated for the whole duration of the experiment. In all treatments we observed that varying volumes induced niche effects: some protozoan species preferentially occupied larger nodes (systematically in isolation). Nevertheless, there is evidence that position along the network played a significant role in shaping biodiversity patterns. Size distribution measurements for each community were taken with a CASY cell counter, and species abundances data on log scale precision were collected by direct microscope observation.

  7. Frontiers in research on biodiversity and disease

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Pieter T. J.; Ostfeld, Richard S.; Keesing, Felicia

    2016-01-01

    Global losses of biodiversity have galvanised efforts to understand how changes to communities affect ecological processes, including transmission of infectious pathogens. Here, we review recent research on diversity–disease relationships and identify future priorities. Growing evidence from experimental, observational and modelling studies indicates that biodiversity changes alter infection for a range of pathogens and through diverse mechanisms. Drawing upon lessons from the community ecology of free-living organisms, we illustrate how recent advances from biodiversity research generally can provide necessary theoretical foundations, inform experimental designs, and guide future research at the interface between infectious disease risk and changing ecological communities. Dilution effects are expected when ecological communities are nested and interactions between the pathogen and the most competent host group(s) persist or increase as biodiversity declines. To move beyond polarising debates about the generality of diversity effects and develop a predictive framework, we emphasise the need to identify how the effects of diversity vary with temporal and spatial scale, to explore how realistic patterns of community assembly affect transmission, and to use experimental studies to consider mechanisms beyond simple changes in host richness, including shifts in trophic structure, functional diversity and symbiont composition. PMID:26261049

  8. Drivers of Pontocaspian Biodiversity Rise and Demise

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wesselingh, Frank; Flecker, Rachel; Wilke, Thomas; Leroy, Suzanne; Krijgsman, Wout; Stoica, Marius

    2015-04-01

    In the past two million years, the region of the Black Sea Basin, Caspian Basin and adjacent Anatolia and the Balkans were the stage of the evolution of a unique brackish water fauna, the so-called Pontocaspian fauna. The fauna is the result of assembly of genera with a Paratethyan origin and Anatolian origins during the Early Pleistocene. The rapid diversification of the Pontocaspian fauna is the result of the very dynamic nature of the lakes (the Caspian Sea is technically a lake) and seas in the region in the past two million years. In most times the various lake basins were isolated (like today), but in other episodes connections existed. Regional and global climate as well as the regional tectonic regimes were main drivers of lake basin evolution. Over the past 80 years a major biodiversity crisis is hitting the Pontocaspian faunas due to environmental degradation, pollution and invasive species. In the new EU-ETN PRIDE (Drivers of Pontocaspian Biodiversity Rise and Demise)we will be documenting the geological context of past diversifications and turnover events. We present examples of rapid turnover (biodiversity crises) in the Quaternary, assess driving forces and draw implications for the nature of the current human-mediated biodiversity crisis in the region.

  9. An Investigation on Students' Perceptions of Biodiversity

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yorek, Nurettin; Aydin, Halil; Ugulu, Ilker; Dogan, Yunus

    2008-01-01

    In this study, pupils' constructions of some concepts related to biodiversity like classifying living things, variation in living things and ecosystem elements, and the concept of life were investigated in the light of constructivist theory of learning. For this purpose, a biological diversity conceptual understanding test formed by a series of…

  10. Calculating Biodiversity in the Real World

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schen, Melissa; Berger, Leslie

    2014-01-01

    One of the standards for life science addressed in the "Next Generation Science Standards" (NGSS Lead States 2013) is "Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics" (HS-LS2). A critical concept included in this core idea is biodiversity. To show competency, students are expected to design investigations, collect data, and…

  11. Optimal fire histories for biodiversity conservation.

    PubMed

    Kelly, Luke T; Bennett, Andrew F; Clarke, Michael F; McCarthy, Michael A

    2015-04-01

    Fire is used as a management tool for biodiversity conservation worldwide. A common objective is to avoid population extinctions due to inappropriate fire regimes. However, in many ecosystems, it is unclear what mix of fire histories will achieve this goal. We determined the optimal fire history of a given area for biological conservation with a method that links tools from 3 fields of research: species distribution modeling, composite indices of biodiversity, and decision science. We based our case study on extensive field surveys of birds, reptiles, and mammals in fire-prone semi-arid Australia. First, we developed statistical models of species' responses to fire history. Second, we determined the optimal allocation of successional states in a given area, based on the geometric mean of species relative abundance. Finally, we showed how conservation targets based on this index can be incorporated into a decision-making framework for fire management. Pyrodiversity per se did not necessarily promote vertebrate biodiversity. Maximizing pyrodiversity by having an even allocation of successional states did not maximize the geometric mean abundance of bird species. Older vegetation was disproportionately important for the conservation of birds, reptiles, and small mammals. Because our method defines fire management objectives based on the habitat requirements of multiple species in the community, it could be used widely to maximize biodiversity in fire-prone ecosystems.

  12. Frontiers in research on biodiversity and disease.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Pieter T J; Ostfeld, Richard S; Keesing, Felicia

    2015-10-01

    Global losses of biodiversity have galvanised efforts to understand how changes to communities affect ecological processes, including transmission of infectious pathogens. Here, we review recent research on diversity-disease relationships and identify future priorities. Growing evidence from experimental, observational and modelling studies indicates that biodiversity changes alter infection for a range of pathogens and through diverse mechanisms. Drawing upon lessons from the community ecology of free-living organisms, we illustrate how recent advances from biodiversity research generally can provide necessary theoretical foundations, inform experimental designs, and guide future research at the interface between infectious disease risk and changing ecological communities. Dilution effects are expected when ecological communities are nested and interactions between the pathogen and the most competent host group(s) persist or increase as biodiversity declines. To move beyond polarising debates about the generality of diversity effects and develop a predictive framework, we emphasise the need to identify how the effects of diversity vary with temporal and spatial scale, to explore how realistic patterns of community assembly affect transmission, and to use experimental studies to consider mechanisms beyond simple changes in host richness, including shifts in trophic structure, functional diversity and symbiont composition.

  13. Biodiversity, conservation biology, and rational choice.

    PubMed

    Frank, David

    2014-03-01

    This paper critically discusses two areas of Sahotra Sarkar's recent work in environmental philosophy: biodiversity and conservation biology and roles for decision theory in incorporating values explicitly in the environmental policy process. I argue that Sarkar's emphasis on the practices of conservation biologists, and especially the role of social and cultural values in the choice of biodiversity constituents, restricts his conception of biodiversity to particular practical conservation contexts. I argue that life scientists have many reasons to measure many types of diversity, and that biodiversity metrics could be value-free. I argue that Sarkar's emphasis on the limitations of normative decision theory is in tension with his statement that decision theory can "put science and ethics together." I also challenge his claim that multi-criteria decision tools lacking axiomatic foundations in preference and utility theory are "without a rational basis," by presenting a case of a simple "outranking" multi-criteria decision rule that can violate a basic normative requirement of preferences (transitivity) and ask whether there may nevertheless be contexts in which such a procedure might assist decision makers.

  14. Temperature Impacts on Deep-Sea Biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yasuhara, M.; Danovaro, R.

    2015-12-01

    Temperature is considered to be a fundamental factor controlling biodiversity in marine ecosystems, but precisely what role temperature plays in modulating diversity is still not clear. The deep ocean, lacking light and in situ photosynthetic primary production, is an ideal model system to test the effects of temperature changes on biodiversity. Here we synthesize current knowledge on temperature-diversity relationships in the deep sea. Our results from both present and past deep-sea assemblages suggest that, when a wide range of deep-sea bottom-water temperatures is considered, a unimodal relationship exists between temperature and diversity (that may be right skewed). It is possible that temperature is important only when at relatively high and low levels but does not play a major role in the intermediate temperature range. Possible mechanisms explaining the temperature-biodiversity relationship include the physiological-tolerance hypothesis, the metabolic hypothesis, island biogeography theory, or some combination of these. The possible unimodal relationship discussed here may allow us to identify tipping points at which on-going global change and deep-water warming may increase or decrease deep-sea biodiversity. Predicted changes in deep-sea temperatures due to human-induced climate change may have more adverse consequences than expected considering the sensitivity of deep-sea ecosystems to temperature changes.

  15. Soil phosphorus constrains biodiversity across European grasslands.

    PubMed

    Ceulemans, Tobias; Stevens, Carly J; Duchateau, Luc; Jacquemyn, Hans; Gowing, David J G; Merckx, Roel; Wallace, Hilary; van Rooijen, Nils; Goethem, Thomas; Bobbink, Roland; Dorland, Edu; Gaudnik, Cassandre; Alard, Didier; Corcket, Emmanuel; Muller, Serge; Dise, Nancy B; Dupré, Cecilia; Diekmann, Martin; Honnay, Olivier

    2014-12-01

    Nutrient pollution presents a serious threat to biodiversity conservation. In terrestrial ecosystems, the deleterious effects of nitrogen pollution are increasingly understood and several mitigating environmental policies have been developed. Compared to nitrogen, the effects of increased phosphorus have received far less attention, although some studies have indicated that phosphorus pollution may be detrimental for biodiversity as well. On the basis of a dataset covering 501 grassland plots throughout Europe, we demonstrate that, independent of the level of atmospheric nitrogen deposition and soil acidity, plant species richness was consistently negatively related to soil phosphorus. We also identified thresholds in soil phosphorus above which biodiversity appears to remain at a constant low level. Our results indicate that nutrient management policies biased toward reducing nitrogen pollution will fail to preserve biodiversity. As soil phosphorus is known to be extremely persistent and we found no evidence for a critical threshold below which no environmental harm is expected, we suggest that agro-environmental schemes should include grasslands that are permanently free from phosphorus fertilization.

  16. Insect Biodiversity in the Palearctic Region

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Insect biodiversity in the Palearctic Region is described. Palearctic occupies cold, temperate, and subtropical regions of Eurasia and Africa north of the Sahara Desert together with islands of the Arctic, Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Based on currently available data, there are about 200,000 speci...

  17. Endangered Species & Biodiversity: A Classroom Project & Theme

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lauro, Brook

    2012-01-01

    Students discover the factors contributing to species losses worldwide by conducting a project about endangered species as a component of a larger classroom theme of biodiversity. Groups conduct research using online endangered- species databases and present results to the class using PowerPoint. Students will improve computer research abilities…

  18. Temperature impacts on deep-sea biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Yasuhara, Moriaki; Danovaro, Roberto

    2016-05-01

    Temperature is considered to be a fundamental factor controlling biodiversity in marine ecosystems, but precisely what role temperature plays in modulating diversity is still not clear. The deep ocean, lacking light and in situ photosynthetic primary production, is an ideal model system to test the effects of temperature changes on biodiversity. Here we synthesize current knowledge on temperature-diversity relationships in the deep sea. Our results from both present and past deep-sea assemblages suggest that, when a wide range of deep-sea bottom-water temperatures is considered, a unimodal relationship exists between temperature and diversity (that may be right skewed). It is possible that temperature is important only when at relatively high and low levels but does not play a major role in the intermediate temperature range. Possible mechanisms explaining the temperature-biodiversity relationship include the physiological-tolerance hypothesis, the metabolic hypothesis, island biogeography theory, or some combination of these. The possible unimodal relationship discussed here may allow us to identify tipping points at which on-going global change and deep-water warming may increase or decrease deep-sea biodiversity. Predicted changes in deep-sea temperatures due to human-induced climate change may have more adverse consequences than expected considering the sensitivity of deep-sea ecosystems to temperature changes.

  19. Biodiversity conservation status in the Republic of Kosovo with focus on biodiversity centres.

    PubMed

    Zeqir, Veselaj; Behxhet, Mustafa; Avni, Hajdari; Zenel, Krasniqi

    2012-04-01

    This paper presents the most recent results on Kosovo biodiversity conservation efforts with focus on two main biodiversity centers of Kosovo: Sharri mountain (already declared as National Park) and Bjeshket e Nemuna mountains in process of designation as a National park. The study presents collection of up to date publications on biodiversity of Kosovo. Of course, there is still to be investigated particularly in the field of lower plants as well invertebrate fauna species. Beside the small territory of 10,887 km2, Kosovo is quite rich in both plant and animal biodiversity. Up to date 1800 vascular plant species have been recorded, while expected number is about 2500 species. Number of higher vertebrates is 210, while the invertebrates are not studied with exception of Lepidoptera with about 150 species. There is no Red List of species for Kosovo developed yet, while some short term conservation measures have already taken place.

  20. WOW! Windows on the Wild: A Biodiversity Primer.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Braus, Judy, Ed.; And Others

    Windows on the Wild is an environmental education program of the World Wildlife Fund. This issue of WOW! focuses on biodiversity. Topics include: an interview with one of the world's leading experts on biodiversity; the lighter side of biodiversity through comics and cartoons; a species-scape that compares the number of species on the planet;…

  1. Biodiversity and Edge Effects: An Activity in Landscape Ecology

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hart, Justin L.

    2007-01-01

    Biodiversity and the conservation of biodiversity have received increased attention during the last few decades and these topics have been implemented into many G7-12 science curricula. This work presents an exercise that may be used in middle and high school classrooms to help students better understand spatial aspects of biodiversity. The…

  2. Future vulnerability of marine biodiversity compared with contemporary and past changes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Beaugrand, Grégory; Edwards, Martin; Raybaud, Virginie; Goberville, Eric; Kirby, Richard R.

    2015-07-01

    Many studies have implied significant effects of global climate change on marine life. Setting these alterations into the context of historical natural change has not been attempted so far, however. Here, using a theoretical framework, we estimate the sensitivity of marine pelagic biodiversity to temperature change and evaluate its past (mid-Pliocene and Last Glacial Maximum (LGM)), contemporaneous (1960-2013) and future (2081-2100 4 scenarios of warming) vulnerability. Our biodiversity reconstructions were highly correlated to real data for several pelagic taxa for the contemporary and the past (LGM and mid-Pliocene) periods. Our results indicate that local species loss will be a prominent phenomenon of climate warming in permanently stratified regions, and that local species invasion will prevail in temperate and polar biomes under all climate change scenarios. Although a small amount of warming under the RCP2.6 scenario is expected to have a minor influence on marine pelagic biodiversity, moderate warming (RCP4.5) will increase by threefold the changes already observed over the past 50 years. Of most concern is that severe warming (RCP6.0 and 8.5) will affect marine pelagic biodiversity to a greater extent than temperature changes that took place between either the LGM or the mid-Pliocene and today, over an area of between 50 (RCP6.0: 46.9-52.4%) and 70% (RCP8.5: 69.4-73.4%) of the global ocean.

  3. Biodiversity data obsolescence and land uses changes

    PubMed Central

    Ariño, Arturo H.; Galicia, David

    2016-01-01

    Background Primary biodiversity records (PBR) are essential in many areas of scientific research as they document the biodiversity through time and space. However, concerns about PBR quality and fitness-for-use have grown, especially as derived from taxonomical, geographical and sampling effort biases. Nonetheless, the temporal bias stemming from data ageing has received less attention. We examine the effect of changes in land use in the information currentness, and therefore data obsolescence, in biodiversity databases. Methods We created maps of land use changes for three periods (1956–1985, 1985–2000 and 2000–2012) at 5-kilometres resolution. For each cell we calculated the percentage of land use change within each period. We then overlaid distribution data about small mammals, and classified each data as ‘non-obsolete or ‘obsolete,’ depending on both the amount of land use changes in the cell, and whether changes occurred at or after the data sampling’s date. Results A total of 14,528 records out of the initial 59,677 turned out to be non-obsolete after taking into account the changes in the land uses in Navarra. These obsolete data existed in 115 of the 156 cells analysed. Furthermore, more than one half of the remaining cells holding non-obsolete records had not been visited at least for the last fifteen years. Conclusion Land use changes challenge the actual information obtainable from biodiversity datasets and therefore its potential uses. With the passage of time, one can expect a steady increase in the availability and use of biological records—but not without them becoming older and likely to be obsolete by land uses changes. Therefore, it becomes necessary to assess records’ obsolescence, as it may jeopardize the knowledge and perception of biodiversity patterns. PMID:27994967

  4. Biodiversity and ecosystem functioning in dynamic landscapes

    PubMed Central

    Brose, Ulrich; Hillebrand, Helmut

    2016-01-01

    The relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning (BEF) and its consequence for ecosystem services has predominantly been studied by controlled, short-term and small-scale experiments under standardized environmental conditions and constant community compositions. However, changes in biodiversity occur in real-world ecosystems with varying environments and a dynamic community composition. In this theme issue, we present novel research on BEF in such dynamic communities. The contributions are organized in three sections on BEF relationships in (i) multi-trophic diversity, (ii) non-equilibrium biodiversity under disturbance and varying environmental conditions, and (iii) large spatial and long temporal scales. The first section shows that multi-trophic BEF relationships often appear idiosyncratic, while accounting for species traits enables a predictive understanding. Future BEF research on complex communities needs to include ecological theory that is based on first principles of species-averaged body masses, stoichiometry and effects of environmental conditions such as temperature. The second section illustrates that disturbance and varying environments have direct as well as indirect (via changes in species richness, community composition and species' traits) effects on BEF relationships. Fluctuations in biodiversity (species richness, community composition and also trait dominance within species) can severely modify BEF relationships. The third section demonstrates that BEF at larger spatial scales is driven by different variables. While species richness per se and community biomass are most important, species identity effects and community composition are less important than at small scales. Across long temporal scales, mass extinctions represent severe changes in biodiversity with mixed effects on ecosystem functions. Together, the contributions of this theme issue identify new research frontiers and answer some open questions on BEF relationships

  5. Growing biodiverse carbon-rich forests.

    PubMed

    Pichancourt, Jean-Baptiste; Firn, Jennifer; Chadès, Iadine; Martin, Tara G

    2014-02-01

    Regrowing forests on cleared land is a key strategy to achieve both biodiversity conservation and climate change mitigation globally. Maximizing these co-benefits, however, remains theoretically and technically challenging because of the complex relationship between carbon sequestration and biodiversity in forests, the strong influence of climate variability and landscape position on forest development, the large number of restoration strategies possible, and long time-frames needed to declare success. Through the synthesis of three decades of knowledge on forest dynamics and plant functional traits combined with decision science, we demonstrate that we cannot always maximize carbon sequestration by simply increasing the functional trait diversity of trees planted. The relationships between plant functional diversity, carbon sequestration rates above ground and in the soil are dependent on climate and landscape positions. We show how to manage 'identities' and 'complementarities' between plant functional traits to achieve systematically maximal cobenefits in various climate and landscape contexts. We provide examples of optimal planting and thinning rules that satisfy this ecological strategy and guide the restoration of forests that are rich in both carbon and plant functional diversity. Our framework provides the first mechanistic approach for generating decision-makingrules that can be used to manage forests for multiple objectives, and supports joined carbon credit and biodiversity conservation initiatives, such as Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation REDD+. The decision framework can also be linked to species distribution models and socio-economic models to find restoration solutions that maximize simultaneously biodiversity, carbon stocks, and other ecosystem services across landscapes. Our study provides the foundation for developing and testing cost-effective and adaptable forest management rules to achieve biodiversity, carbon

  6. Intensive agriculture reduces soil biodiversity across Europe.

    PubMed

    Tsiafouli, Maria A; Thébault, Elisa; Sgardelis, Stefanos P; de Ruiter, Peter C; van der Putten, Wim H; Birkhofer, Klaus; Hemerik, Lia; de Vries, Franciska T; Bardgett, Richard D; Brady, Mark Vincent; Bjornlund, Lisa; Jørgensen, Helene Bracht; Christensen, Sören; Hertefeldt, Tina D'; Hotes, Stefan; Gera Hol, W H; Frouz, Jan; Liiri, Mira; Mortimer, Simon R; Setälä, Heikki; Tzanopoulos, Joseph; Uteseny, Karoline; Pižl, Václav; Stary, Josef; Wolters, Volkmar; Hedlund, Katarina

    2015-02-01

    Soil biodiversity plays a key role in regulating the processes that underpin the delivery of ecosystem goods and services in terrestrial ecosystems. Agricultural intensification is known to change the diversity of individual groups of soil biota, but less is known about how intensification affects biodiversity of the soil food web as a whole, and whether or not these effects may be generalized across regions. We examined biodiversity in soil food webs from grasslands, extensive, and intensive rotations in four agricultural regions across Europe: in Sweden, the UK, the Czech Republic and Greece. Effects of land-use intensity were quantified based on structure and diversity among functional groups in the soil food web, as well as on community-weighted mean body mass of soil fauna. We also elucidate land-use intensity effects on diversity of taxonomic units within taxonomic groups of soil fauna. We found that between regions soil food web diversity measures were variable, but that increasing land-use intensity caused highly consistent responses. In particular, land-use intensification reduced the complexity in the soil food webs, as well as the community-weighted mean body mass of soil fauna. In all regions across Europe, species richness of earthworms, Collembolans, and oribatid mites was negatively affected by increased land-use intensity. The taxonomic distinctness, which is a measure of taxonomic relatedness of species in a community that is independent of species richness, was also reduced by land-use intensification. We conclude that intensive agriculture reduces soil biodiversity, making soil food webs less diverse and composed of smaller bodied organisms. Land-use intensification results in fewer functional groups of soil biota with fewer and taxonomically more closely related species. We discuss how these changes in soil biodiversity due to land-use intensification may threaten the functioning of soil in agricultural production systems.

  7. Reef fishes in biodiversity hotspots are at greatest risk from loss of coral species.

    PubMed

    Holbrook, Sally J; Schmitt, Russell J; Messmer, Vanessa; Brooks, Andrew J; Srinivasan, Maya; Munday, Philip L; Jones, Geoffrey P

    2015-01-01

    Coral reef ecosystems are under a variety of threats from global change and anthropogenic disturbances that are reducing the number and type of coral species on reefs. Coral reefs support upwards of one third of all marine species of fish, so the loss of coral habitat may have substantial consequences to local fish diversity. We posit that the effects of habitat degradation will be most severe in coral regions with highest biodiversity of fishes due to greater specialization by fishes for particular coral habitats. Our novel approach to this important but untested hypothesis was to conduct the same field experiment at three geographic locations across the Indo-Pacific biodiversity gradient (Papua New Guinea; Great Barrier Reef, Australia; French Polynesia). Specifically, we experimentally explored whether the response of local fish communities to identical changes in diversity of habitat-providing corals was independent of the size of the regional species pool of fishes. We found that the proportional reduction (sensitivity) in fish biodiversity to loss of coral diversity was greater for regions with larger background species pools, reflecting variation in the degree of habitat specialization of fishes across the Indo-Pacific diversity gradient. This result implies that habitat-associated fish in diversity hotspots are at greater risk of local extinction to a given loss of habitat diversity compared to regions with lower species richness. This mechanism, related to the positive relationship between habitat specialization and regional biodiversity, and the elevated extinction risk this poses for biodiversity hotspots, may apply to species in other types of ecosystems.

  8. Assessing land-use impacts on biodiversity using an expert systems tool

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Crist, P.J.; Kohley, T.W.; Oakleaf, J.

    2000-01-01

    Habitat alteration, in the form of land-use development, is a leading cause of biodiversity loss in the U.S. and elsewhere. Although statutes in the U.S. may require consideration of biodiversity in local land-use planning and regulation, local governments lack the data, resources, and expertise to routinely consider biotic impacts that result from permitted land uses. We hypothesized that decision support systems could aid solution of this problem. We developed a pilot biodiversity expert systems tool (BEST) to test that hypothesis and learn what additional scientific and technological advancements are required for broad implementation of such a system. BEST uses data from the U.S. Geological Survey's Gap Analysis Program (GAP) and other data in a desktop GIS environment. The system provides predictions of conflict between proposed land uses and biotic elements and is intended for use at the start of the development review process. Key challenges were the development of categorization systems that relate named land-use types to ecological impacts, and relate sensitivities of biota to ecological impact levels. Although the advent of GAP and sophisticated desktop GIS make such a system feasible for broad implementation, considerable ongoing research is required to make the results of such a system scientifically sound, informative, and reliable for the regulatory process. We define a role for local government involvement in biodiversity impact assessment, the need for a biodiversity decision support system, the development of a prototype system, and scientific needs for broad implementation of a robust and reliable system.

  9. A concerted action of hepatitis C virus p7 and nonstructural protein 2 regulates core localization at the endoplasmic reticulum and virus assembly.

    PubMed

    Boson, Bertrand; Granio, Ophélia; Bartenschlager, Ralf; Cosset, François-Loïc

    2011-07-01

    Hepatitis C virus (HCV) assembly remains a poorly understood process. Lipid droplets (LDs) are thought to act as platforms for the assembly of viral components. The JFH1 HCV strain replicates and assembles in association with LD-associated membranes, around which viral core protein is predominantly detected. In contrast, despite its intrinsic capacity to localize to LDs when expressed individually, we found that the core protein of the high-titer Jc1 recombinant virus was hardly detected on LDs of cell culture-grown HCV (HCVcc)-infected cells, but was mainly localized at endoplasmic reticulum (ER) membranes where it colocalized with the HCV envelope glycoproteins. Furthermore, high-titer cell culture-adapted JFH1 virus, obtained after long-term culture in Huh7.5 cells, exhibited an ER-localized core in contrast to non-adapted JFH1 virus, strengthening the hypothesis that ER localization of core is required for efficient HCV assembly. Our results further indicate that p7 and NS2 are HCV strain-specific factors that govern the recruitment of core protein from LDs to ER assembly sites. Indeed, using expression constructs and HCVcc recombinant genomes, we found that p7 is sufficient to induce core localization at the ER, independently of its ion-channel activity. Importantly, the combined expression of JFH1 or Jc1 p7 and NS2 induced the same differential core subcellular localization detected in JFH1- vs. Jc1-infected cells. Finally, results obtained by expressing p7-NS2 chimeras between either virus type indicated that compatibilities between the p7 and the first NS2 trans-membrane domains is required to induce core-ER localization and assembly of extra- and intra-cellular infectious viral particles. In conclusion, we identified p7 and NS2 as key determinants governing the subcellular localization of HCV core to LDs vs. ER and required for initiation of the early steps of virus assembly.

  10. India Biodiversity Portal: An integrated, interactive and participatory biodiversity informatics platform

    PubMed Central

    George, Rohit M; Balasubramanian, Dhandapani; Réjou-Méchain, Maxime; Muthusankar, Gowrappan; Ramesh, Brahmasamudra Ranganna; Prabhakar, R

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Background This paper describes a growing biodiversity platform, launched in 2008, which organizes knowledge on the biodiversity of India. The main objective and originality of the India Biodiversity Portal (IBP) is to aggregate curated biodiversity data of different kinds (e.g. distribution maps, temporal distribution or life history) in an integrated platform where amateurs and experts can easily interact. New information Since its launch, the platform has seen an exceptional increase in both user activity and biodiversity data. Currently the portal has descriptions of over 20,400 species, and has aggregated approximately 1,280,000 observations covering more than 30,000 species, which already constitutes a unique source of information for scientists and stakeholders in conservation. Over 8500 users have registered on the portal. The amount of data generated and to be generated in the next few years by this portal will certainly help the effective implementation of biodiversity conservation and management in one of the most ecologically diverse countries in the world. PMID:27932923

  11. Microbial biodiversity of the atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klein, Ann Maureen

    Microorganisms are critical to the functioning of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems and may also play a role in the functioning of the atmosphere. However, little is known about the diversity and function of microorganisms in the atmosphere. To investigate the forces driving the assembly of bacterial microbial communities in the atmosphere, I measured temporal variation in bacterial diversity and composition over diurnal and inter-day time scales. Results suggest that bacterial communities in the atmosphere markedly vary over diurnal time scales and are likely structured by inputs from both local terrestrial and long-distance sources. To assess the potential functions of bacteria and fungi in the atmosphere, I characterized total and potentially active communities using both RNA- and DNA-based data. Results suggest there are metabolically active microorganisms in the atmosphere that may affect atmospheric functions including precipitation development and carbon cycling. This dissertation includes previously published and unpublished co-authored material.

  12. Student Teachers' Understanding of the Terminology, Distribution, and Loss of Biodiversity: Perspectives from a Biodiversity Hotspot and an Industrialized Country

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fiebelkorn, Florian; Menzel, Susanne

    2013-01-01

    The loss of biodiversity is one of the most urgent global environmental problems of our time. Public education and awareness building is key to successful biodiversity protection. Knowledgeable and skilled student teachers are a key component for the successful implementation of biodiversity education in schools. Yet, little empirical evidence…

  13. Fifteen forms of biodiversity trend in the Anthropocene.

    PubMed

    McGill, Brian J; Dornelas, Maria; Gotelli, Nicholas J; Magurran, Anne E

    2015-02-01

    Humans are transforming the biosphere in unprecedented ways, raising the important question of how these impacts are changing biodiversity. Here we argue that our understanding of biodiversity trends in the Anthropocene, and our ability to protect the natural world, is impeded by a failure to consider different types of biodiversity measured at different spatial scales. We propose that ecologists should recognize and assess 15 distinct categories of biodiversity trend. We summarize what is known about each of these 15 categories, identify major gaps in our current knowledge, and recommend the next steps required for better understanding of trends in biodiversity.

  14. How Should Beta-Diversity Inform Biodiversity Conservation?

    PubMed

    Socolar, Jacob B; Gilroy, James J; Kunin, William E; Edwards, David P

    2016-01-01

    To design robust protected area networks, accurately measure species losses, or understand the processes that maintain species diversity, conservation science must consider the organization of biodiversity in space. Central is beta-diversity--the component of regional diversity that accumulates from compositional differences between local species assemblages. We review how beta-diversity is impacted by human activities, including farming, selective logging, urbanization, species invasions, overhunting, and climate change. Beta-diversity increases, decreases, or remains unchanged by these impacts, depending on the balance of processes that cause species composition to become more different (biotic heterogenization) or more similar (biotic homogenization) between sites. While maintaining high beta-diversity is not always a desirable conservation outcome, understanding beta-diversity is essential for protecting regional diversity and can directly assist conservation planning.

  15. Foundation species' overlap enhances biodiversity and multifunctionality from the patch to landscape scale in southeastern United States salt marshes.

    PubMed

    Angelini, Christine; van der Heide, Tjisse; Griffin, John N; Morton, Joseph P; Derksen-Hooijberg, Marlous; Lamers, Leon P M; Smolders, Alfons J P; Silliman, Brian R

    2015-07-22

    Although there is mounting evidence that biodiversity is an important and widespread driver of ecosystem multifunctionality, much of this research has focused on small-scale biodiversity manipulations. Hence, which mechanisms maintain patches of enhanced biodiversity in natural systems and if these patches elevate ecosystem multifunctionality at both local and landscape scales remain outstanding questions. In a 17 month experiment conducted within southeastern United States salt marshes, we found that patches of enhanced biodiversity and multifunctionality arise only where habitat-forming foundation species overlap--i.e. where aggregations of ribbed mussels (Geukensia demissa) form around cordgrass (Spartina alterniflora) stems. By empirically scaling up our experimental results to the marsh platform at 12 sites, we further show that mussels--despite covering only approximately 1% of the marsh surface--strongly enhance five distinct ecosystem functions, including decomposition, primary production and water infiltration rate, at the landscape scale. Thus, mussels create conditions that support the co-occurrence of high densities of functionally distinct organisms within cordgrass and, in doing so, elevate salt marsh multifunctionality from the patch to landscape scale. Collectively, these findings suggest that patterns in foundation species' overlap drive variation in biodiversity and ecosystem functioning within and across natural ecosystems.We therefore argue that foundation species should be integrated in our conceptual understanding of forces that moderate biodiversity--ecosystem functioning relationships, approaches for conserving species diversity and strategies to improve the multifunctionality of degraded ecosystems.

  16. Climate warming increases biodiversity of small rodents by favoring rare or less abundant species in a grassland ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Jiang, Guangshun; Liu, Jun; Xu, Lei; Yu, Guirui; He, Honglin; Zhang, Zhibin

    2013-06-01

    Our Earth is facing the challenge of accelerating climate change, which imposes a great threat to biodiversity. Many published studies suggest that climate warming may cause a dramatic decline in biodiversity, especially in colder and drier regions. In this study, we investigated the effects of temperature, precipitation and a normalized difference vegetation index on biodiversity indices of rodent communities in the current or previous year for both detrended and nondetrended data in semi-arid grassland of Inner Mongolia during 1982-2006. Our results demonstrate that temperature showed predominantly positive effects on the biodiversity of small rodents; precipitation showed both positive and negative effects; a normalized difference vegetation index showed positive effects; and cross-correlation function values between rodent abundance and temperature were negatively correlated with rodent abundance. Our results suggest that recent climate warming increased the biodiversity of small rodents by providing more benefits to population growth of rare or less abundant species than that of more abundant species in Inner Mongolia grassland, which does not support the popular view that global warming would decrease biodiversity in colder and drier regions. We hypothesized that higher temperatures might benefit rare or less abundant species (with smaller populations and more folivorous diets) by reducing the probability of local extinction and/or by increasing herbaceous food resources.

  17. Generalized model of island biodiversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kessler, David A.; Shnerb, Nadav M.

    2015-04-01

    The dynamics of a local community of competing species with weak immigration from a static regional pool is studied. Implementing the generalized competitive Lotka-Volterra model with demographic noise, a rich dynamics with four qualitatively distinct phases is unfolded. When the overall interspecies competition is weak, the island species recapitulate the mainland species. For higher values of the competition parameter, the system still admits an equilibrium community, but now some of the mainland species are absent on the island. Further increase in competition leads to an intermittent "disordered" phase, where the dynamics is controlled by invadable combinations of species and the turnover rate is governed by the migration. Finally, the strong competition phase is glasslike, dominated by uninvadable states and noise-induced transitions. Our model contains, as a special case, the celebrated neutral island theories of Wilson-MacArthur and Hubbell. Moreover, we show that slight deviations from perfect neutrality may lead to each of the phases, as the Hubbell point appears to be quadracritical.

  18. Dams and downstream aquatic biodiversity: Potential food web consequences of hydrologic and geomorphic change

    SciTech Connect

    Power, M.E.; Dietrich, W.E.; Finlay, J.C.

    1996-11-01

    Responses of rivers and river ecosystems to dams are complex and varied, as they depend on local sediment supplies, geomorphic constraints, climate, dam structure and operation, and key attributes of the biota. Therefore, {open_quotes}one-size-fits-all{close_quotes} prescriptions cannot substitute for local knowledge in developing prescriptions for dam structure and operation to protect local biodiversity. One general principle is self-evident: that biodiversity is best protected in rivers where physical regimes are the most natural. A sufficiently natural regime of flow variation is particularly crucial for river biota and food webs. We review our research and that of others to illustrate the ecological importance of alternating periods of low an high flow, of periodic bed scour, and of floodplain inundation and dewatering. These fluctuations regulate both the life cycles of river biota and species interactions in the food webs that sustain them. Even if the focus of biodiversity conservation efforts is on a target species rather than whole ecosystems, a food web perspective is necessary, because populations of any species depend critically on how their resources, prey, and potential predators also respond to environmental change. In regulated rivers, managers must determine how the frequency, magnitude, and timing of hydrologic events interact to constrain or support species and food webs. Simple ecological mode