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Sample records for mammals increased taxon

  1. Increased taxon sampling greatly reduces phylogenetic error.

    PubMed

    Zwickl, Derrick J; Hillis, David M

    2002-08-01

    Several authors have argued recently that extensive taxon sampling has a positive and important effect on the accuracy of phylogenetic estimates. However, other authors have argued that there is little benefit of extensive taxon sampling, and so phylogenetic problems can or should be reduced to a few exemplar taxa as a means of reducing the computational complexity of the phylogenetic analysis. In this paper we examined five aspects of study design that may have led to these different perspectives. First, we considered the measurement of phylogenetic error across a wide range of taxon sample sizes, and conclude that the expected error based on randomly selecting trees (which varies by taxon sample size) must be considered in evaluating error in studies of the effects of taxon sampling. Second, we addressed the scope of the phylogenetic problems defined by different samples of taxa, and argue that phylogenetic scope needs to be considered in evaluating the importance of taxon-sampling strategies. Third, we examined the claim that fast and simple tree searches are as effective as more thorough searches at finding near-optimal trees that minimize error. We show that a more complete search of tree space reduces phylogenetic error, especially as the taxon sample size increases. Fourth, we examined the effects of simple versus complex simulation models on taxonomic sampling studies. Although benefits of taxon sampling are apparent for all models, data generated under more complex models of evolution produce higher overall levels of error and show greater positive effects of increased taxon sampling. Fifth, we asked if different phylogenetic optimality criteria show different effects of taxon sampling. Although we found strong differences in effectiveness of different optimality criteria as a function of taxon sample size, increased taxon sampling improved the results from all the common optimality criteria. Nonetheless, the method that showed the lowest overall

  2. Statoviruses, A novel taxon of RNA viruses present in the gastrointestinal tracts of diverse mammals.

    PubMed

    Janowski, Andrew B; Krishnamurthy, Siddharth R; Lim, Efrem S; Zhao, Guoyan; Brenchley, Jason M; Barouch, Dan H; Thakwalakwa, Chrissie; Manary, Mark J; Holtz, Lori R; Wang, David

    2017-04-01

    Next-generation sequencing has expanded our understanding of the viral populations that constitute the mammalian virome. We describe a novel taxon of viruses named Statoviruses, for Stool associated Tombus-like viruses, present in multiple metagenomic datasets. These viruses define a novel clade that is phylogenetically related to the RNA virus families Tombusviridae and Flaviviridae. Five distinct statovirus types were identified in human, macaque, mouse, and cow gastrointestinal tract samples. The prototype genome, statovirus A, was frequently identified in macaque stool samples from multiple geographically distinct cohorts. Another genome, statovirus C1, was discovered in a stool sample from a human child with fever, cough, and rash. Further experimental data will clarify whether these viruses are infectious to mammals or if they originate from another source present in the mammalian gastrointestinal tract.

  3. Assessing an unknown evolutionary process: effect of increasing site-specific knowledge through taxon addition.

    PubMed

    Pollock, D D; Bruno, W J

    2000-12-01

    Assessment of the evolutionary process is crucial for understanding the effect of protein structure and function on sequence evolution and for many other analyses in molecular evolution. Here, we used simulations to study how taxon sampling affects accuracy of parameter estimation and topological inference in the absence of branch length asymmetry. With maximum-likelihood analysis, we find that adding taxa dramatically improves both support for the evolutionary model and accurate assessment of its parameters when compared with increasing the sequence length. Using a method we call "doppelgänger trees," we distinguish the contributions of two sources of improved topological inference: greater knowledge about internal nodes and greater knowledge of site-specific rate parameters. Surprisingly, highly significant support for the correct general model does not lead directly to improved topological inference. Instead, substantial improvement occurs only with accurate assessment of the evolutionary process at individual sites. Although these results are based on a simplified model of the evolutionary process, they indicate that in general, assuming processes are not independent and identically distributed among sites, more extensive sampling of taxonomic biodiversity will greatly improve analytical results in many current sequence data sets with moderate sequence lengths.

  4. Framing the Salmonidae Family Phylogenetic Portrait: A More Complete Picture from Increased Taxon Sampling

    PubMed Central

    Crête-Lafrenière, Alexis; Weir, Laura K.; Bernatchez, Louis

    2012-01-01

    Considerable research efforts have focused on elucidating the systematic relationships among salmonid fishes; an understanding of these patterns of relatedness will inform conservation- and fisheries-related issues, as well as provide a framework for investigating evolutionary mechanisms in the group. However, uncertainties persist in current Salmonidae phylogenies due to biological and methodological factors, and a comprehensive phylogeny including most representatives of the family could provide insight into the causes of these difficulties. Here we increase taxon sampling by including nearly all described salmonid species (n = 63) to present a time-calibrated and more complete portrait of Salmonidae using a combination of molecular markers and analytical techniques. This strategy improved resolution by increasing the signal-to-noise ratio and helped discriminate methodological and systematic errors from sources of difficulty associated with biological processes. Our results highlight novel aspects of salmonid evolution. First, we call into question the widely-accepted evolutionary relationships among sub-families and suggest that Thymallinae, rather than Coregoninae, is the sister group to the remainder of Salmonidae. Second, we find that some groups in Salmonidae are older than previously thought and that the mitochondrial rate of molecular divergence varies markedly among genes and clades. We estimate the age of the family to be 59.1 MY (CI: 63.2-58.1 MY) old, which likely corresponds to the timing of whole genome duplication in salmonids. The average, albeit highly variable, mitochondrial rate of molecular divergence was estimated as ∼0.31%/MY (CI: 0.27–0.36%/MY). Finally, we suggest that some species require taxonomic revision, including two monotypic genera, Stenodus and Salvethymus. In addition, we resolve some relationships that have been notoriously difficult to discern and present a clearer picture of the evolution of the group. Our findings

  5. Intensive removal of signal crayfish (Pacifastacus leniusculus) from rivers increases numbers and taxon richness of macroinvertebrate species

    PubMed Central

    Moorhouse, Tom P; Poole, Alison E; Evans, Laura C; Bradley, David C; Macdonald, David W

    2014-01-01

    Invasive species are a major cause of species extinction in freshwater ecosystems, and crayfish species are particularly pervasive. The invasive American signal crayfish Pacifastacus leniusculus has impacts over a range of trophic levels, but particularly on benthic aquatic macroinvertebrates. Our study examined the effect on the macroinvertebrate community of removal trapping of signal crayfish from UK rivers. Crayfish were intensively trapped and removed from two tributaries of the River Thames to test the hypothesis that lowering signal crayfish densities would result in increases in macroinvertebrate numbers and taxon richness. We removed 6181 crayfish over four sessions, resulting in crayfish densities that decreased toward the center of the removal sections. Conversely in control sections (where crayfish were trapped and returned), crayfish density increased toward the center of the section. Macroinvertebrate numbers and taxon richness were inversely correlated with crayfish densities. Multivariate analysis of the abundance of each taxon yielded similar results and indicated that crayfish removals had positive impacts on macroinvertebrate numbers and taxon richness but did not alter the composition of the wider macroinvertebrate community. Synthesis and applications: Our results demonstrate that non-eradication-oriented crayfish removal programmes may lead to increases in the total number of macroinvertebrates living in the benthos. This represents the first evidence that removing signal crayfish from riparian systems, at intensities feasible during control attempts or commercial crayfishing, may be beneficial for a range of sympatric aquatic macroinvertebrates. PMID:24634733

  6. Increased homeothermy during reproduction in a basal placental mammal.

    PubMed

    Levesque, Danielle L; Lovegrove, Barry G

    2014-05-01

    Homeothermic endothermy, the maintenance of a high and stable body temperature (Tb) using heat produced by elevated metabolism, is energetically expensive. There is increasing evidence that the earliest endotherms were heterotherms that, rather than maintaining strict homeothermy, allowed Tb to fluctuate with large variations between active and rest-phase Tb. The high level of homeothermy observed in modern mammals is therefore likely to have evolved from an ancestral heterothermic state. One of the hypotheses for the evolution of endothermy is that homeothermy allows for greater energetic output during reproduction (parental care model). We tested this hypothesis by measuring metabolic rates over a range of ambient temperatures in both reproductive and non-reproductive greater hedgehog tenrecs (Setifer setosus), a physiologically primitive mammal from Madagascar. Tenrecs have some of the lowest metabolic rates and highest levels of Tb variability of any mammal and are therefore good models of the ancestral eutherian state. During pregnancy and lactation, there was an increase in metabolism and Tb below the thermoneutral zone, accompanied by a decrease in Tb variability. The lower critical limit of the thermoneutral zone was estimated at ~25°C. However, whereas increases in resting metabolism were substantial below 20°C (up to 150% higher during reproduction), daytime rest-phase ambient temperatures at the study site rarely reached equivalent low levels. Thus, S. setosus provide an example for how relatively low-cost increases in homeothermy could have led to substantial increases in fitness by allowing for the faster production of young. The mechanisms necessary for increases in thermogenesis during reproduction would have further benefited the development of homeothermy in mammals.

  7. The taxon concept: is it taxonic?

    PubMed

    Grove, William M

    2008-06-01

    The question of whether the concept of a "taxon" (a nonarbitrary latent category) is itself categorical, or is a matter of degree, has lain dormant within taxometrics. I analyze the problem conceptually. Part of the meaning of "taxon," I hold, goes beyond the manifest statistical properties of admixed probability distributions; any of certain forms of causal nexus leading to admixed distributions are involved as well. I defend the thesis that the threshold question, "Is there a taxon?" has a yes-or-no answer, establishing that "taxonicity" is categorical (taxonic), but also that as some taxa are much more readily distinguished from their complement classes than are others, the taxon question is also quantitative. It is on this basis that Meehl and others held the view that taxonicity is a matter of degree; however, they were wrong to hold that it is only a matter of degree.

  8. Relationships of Cetacea (Artiodactyla) Among Mammals: Increased Taxon Sampling Alters Interpretations of Key Fossils and Character Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Spaulding, Michelle; O'Leary, Maureen A.; Gatesy, John

    2009-01-01

    Background Integration of diverse data (molecules, fossils) provides the most robust test of the phylogeny of cetaceans. Positioning key fossils is critical for reconstructing the character change from life on land to life in the water. Methodology/Principal Findings We reexamine relationships of critical extinct taxa that impact our understanding of the origin of Cetacea. We do this in the context of the largest total evidence analysis of morphological and molecular information for Artiodactyla (661 phenotypic characters and 46,587 molecular characters, coded for 33 extant and 48 extinct taxa). We score morphological data for Carnivoramorpha, †Creodonta, Lipotyphla, and the †raoellid artiodactylan †Indohyus and concentrate on determining which fossils are positioned along stem lineages to major artiodactylan crown clades. Shortest trees place Cetacea within Artiodactyla and close to †Indohyus, with †Mesonychia outside of Artiodactyla. The relationships of †Mesonychia and †Indohyus are highly unstable, however - in trees only two steps longer than minimum length, †Mesonychia falls inside Artiodactyla and displaces †Indohyus from a position close to Cetacea. Trees based only on data that fossilize continue to show the classic arrangement of relationships within Artiodactyla with Cetacea grouping outside the clade, a signal incongruent with the molecular data that dominate the total evidence result. Conclusions/Significance Integration of new fossil material of †Indohyus impacts placement of another extinct clade †Mesonychia, pushing it much farther down the tree. The phylogenetic position of †Indohyus suggests that the cetacean stem lineage included herbivorous and carnivorous aquatic species. We also conclude that extinct members of Cetancodonta (whales + hippopotamids) shared a derived ability to hear underwater sounds, even though several cetancodontans lack a pachyostotic auditory bulla. We revise the taxonomy of living and extinct artiodactylans and propose explicit node and stem-based definitions for the ingroup. PMID:19774069

  9. Non-monophyly of most supraspecific taxa of calcareous sponges (Porifera, Calcarea) revealed by increased taxon sampling and partitioned Bayesian analysis of ribosomal DNA.

    PubMed

    Dohrmann, Martin; Voigt, Oliver; Erpenbeck, Dirk; Wörheide, Gert

    2006-09-01

    Calcareous sponges (Porifera, Calcarea) play an important role for our understanding of early metazoan evolution, since several molecular studies suggested their closer relationship to Eumetazoa than to the other two sponge 'classes,' Demospongiae and Hexactinellida. The division of Calcarea into the subtaxa Calcinea and Calcaronea is well established by now, but their internal relationships remain largely unresolved. Here, we estimate phylogenetic relationships within Calcarea in a Bayesian framework, using full-length 18S and partial 28S ribosomal DNA sequences. Both genes were analyzed separately and in combination and were further partitioned by stem and loop regions, the former being modelled to take non-independence of paired sites into account. By substantially increasing taxon sampling, we show that most of the traditionally recognized supraspecific taxa within Calcinea and Calcaronea are not monophyletic, challenging the existing classification system, while monophyly of Calcinea and Calcaronea is again highly supported.

  10. Arboreality has allowed for the evolution of increased longevity in mammals.

    PubMed

    Shattuck, Milena R; Williams, Scott A

    2010-03-09

    The evolutionary theory of aging predicts that species will experience delayed senescence and increased longevity when rates of extrinsic mortality are reduced. It has long been recognized that birds and bats are characterized by lower rates of extrinsic mortality and greater longevities than nonvolant endotherms, presumably because flight reduces exposure to terrestrial predators, disease, and environmental hazards. Like flight, arboreality may act to reduce extrinsic mortality, delay senescence, and increase longevity and has been suggested as an explanation for the long lifespans of primates. However, this hypothesis has yet to be tested in mammals in general. We analyze a large dataset of mammalian longevity records to test whether arboreal mammals are characterized by greater longevities than terrestrial mammals. Here, we show that arboreal mammals are longer lived than terrestrial mammals at common body sizes, independent of phylogeny. Subclade analyses demonstrate that this trend holds true in nearly every mammalian subgroup, with two notable exceptions-metatherians (marsupials) and euarchontans (primates and their close relatives). These subgroups are unique in that each has experienced a long and persistent arboreal evolutionary history, with subsequent transitions to terrestriality occurring multiple times within each group. In all other clades examined, terrestriality appears to be the primitive condition, and species that become arboreal tend to experience increased longevity, often independently in multiple lineages within each clade. Adoption of an arboreal lifestyle may have allowed for increased longevity in these lineages and in primates in general. Overall, these results confirm the fundamental predictions of the evolutionary theory of aging.

  11. Hibernation is associated with increased survival and the evolution of slow life histories among mammals.

    PubMed

    Turbill, Christopher; Bieber, Claudia; Ruf, Thomas

    2011-11-22

    Survival probability is predicted to underlie the evolution of life histories along a slow-fast continuum. Hibernation allows a diverse range of small mammals to exhibit seasonal dormancy, which might increase survival and consequently be associated with relatively slow life histories. We used phylogenetically informed GLS models to test for an effect of hibernation on seasonal and annual survival, and on key attributes of life histories among mammals. Monthly survival was in most cases higher during hibernation compared with the active season, probably because inactivity minimizes predation. Hibernators also have approximately 15 per cent higher annual survival than similar sized non-hibernating species. As predicted, we found an effect of hibernation on the relationships between life history attributes and body mass: small hibernating mammals generally have longer maximum life spans (50% greater for a 50 g species), reproduce at slower rates, mature at older ages and have longer generation times compared with similar-sized non-hibernators. In accordance with evolutionary theories, however, hibernating species do not have longer life spans than non-hibernators with similar survival rates, nor do they have lower reproductive rates than non-hibernators with similar maximum life spans. Thus, our combined results suggest that (i) hibernation is associated with high rates of overwinter and annual survival, and (ii) an increase in survival in hibernating species is linked with the coevolution of traits indicative of relatively slow life histories.

  12. Modeling effectiveness of gradual increases in source level to mitigate effects of sonar on marine mammals.

    PubMed

    Von Benda-Beckmann, Alexander M; Wensveen, Paul J; Kvadsheim, Petter H; Lam, Frans-Peter A; Miller, Patrick J O; Tyack, Peter L; Ainslie, Michael A

    2014-02-01

    Ramp-up or soft-start procedures (i.e., gradual increase in the source level) are used to mitigate the effect of sonar sound on marine mammals, although no one to date has tested whether ramp-up procedures are effective at reducing the effect of sound on marine mammals. We investigated the effectiveness of ramp-up procedures in reducing the area within which changes in hearing thresholds can occur. We modeled the level of sound killer whales (Orcinus orca) were exposed to from a generic sonar operation preceded by different ramp-up schemes. In our model, ramp-up procedures reduced the risk of killer whales receiving sounds of sufficient intensity to affect their hearing. The effectiveness of the ramp-up procedure depended strongly on the assumed response threshold and differed with ramp-up duration, although extending the duration of the ramp up beyond 5 min did not add much to its predicted mitigating effect. The main factors that limited effectiveness of ramp up in a typical antisubmarine warfare scenario were high source level, rapid moving sonar source, and long silences between consecutive sonar transmissions. Our exposure modeling approach can be used to evaluate and optimize mitigation procedures.

  13. Strong Artificial Selection in Domestic Mammals Did Not Result in an Increased Recombination Rate

    PubMed Central

    Muñoz-Fuentes, Violeta; Marcet-Ortega, Marina; Alkorta-Aranburu, Gorka; Linde Forsberg, Catharina; Morrell, Jane M.; Manzano-Piedras, Esperanza; Söderberg, Arne; Daniel, Katrin; Villalba, Adrian; Toth, Attila; Di Rienzo, Anna; Roig, Ignasi; Vilà, Carles

    2015-01-01

    Recombination rates vary in intensity and location at the species, individual, sex and chromosome levels. Despite the fundamental biological importance of this process, the selective forces that operate to shape recombination rate and patterns are unclear. Domestication offers a unique opportunity to study the interplay between recombination and selection. In domesticates, intense selection for particular traits is imposed on small populations over many generations, resulting in organisms that differ, sometimes dramatically, in morphology and physiology from their wild ancestor. Although earlier studies suggested increased recombination rate in domesticates, a formal comparison of recombination rates between domestic mammals and their wild congeners was missing. In order to determine broad-scale recombination rate, we used immunolabeling detection of MLH1 foci as crossover markers in spermatocytes in three pairs of closely related wild and domestic species (dog and wolf, goat and ibex, and sheep and mouflon). In the three pairs, and contrary to previous suggestions, our data show that contemporary recombination rate is higher in the wild species. Subsequently, we inferred recombination breakpoints in sequence data for 16 genomic regions in dogs and wolves, each containing a locus associated with a dog phenotype potentially under selection during domestication. No difference in the number and distribution of recombination breakpoints was found between dogs and wolves. We conclude that our data indicate that strong directional selection did not result in changes in recombination in domestic mammals, and that both upper and lower bounds for crossover rates may be tightly regulated. PMID:25414125

  14. Relationship among body mass, metabolic rate and the intrinsic rate of natural increase in mammals.

    PubMed

    Hennemann, Willard W

    1983-01-01

    The intrinsic rate of natural increase, rm, was calculated for 44 mammalian species using the Cole (1954) equation and life history data from the literature. Values of r m so calculated were plotted as log10 r m versus log10 body mass revealing a linear relationship with a slope of-0.2622. The equation of the regression line fitting these data was then used to correct r m for body mass so that interspecific comparisons with respect to r m and basal metabolic rate could be made to determine if a positive relationship exists between these two parameters. Basal metabolic rate correlates positively with r m, and apparently is one of many factors operating in the evolution of r m. Implications of these conclusions with respect to food habits, resource limitations, and the possible existence of a trade-off between maintenance and reproduction in certain environments is discussed.If one assumes that all mammals face environmental limits on the amount of energy available for maintenance, growth, and reproduction, it follows that any reduction in maintenance costs should provide more energy for growth and/or reproduction. The proposed existence of such a trade-off between maintenance and reproduction was a major premise upon which MacArthur and Wilson (1967) based their concept of "r- and K-selection". Recently, however, McNab (1980) has suggested that for mammals that reproduce when food is not limiting, an increase in one maintenace cost, i.e. basal metabolic rate, may not detract from but may actually increase the intrinsic rate of natural increase, r m. Although this idea may seem counterintuitive, if one assumes an unlimited amount of energy, the factor limiting growth and reproduction will be the rate at which the energy can be used; a higher metabolic rate will mean a higher rate of biosynthesis, a faster growth rate, s shorter generation time, and hence a higher r m. Since some animal species appear not to be food-limited during their reproductive seasons (Armitage

  15. Contrasting coloration in terrestrial mammals

    PubMed Central

    Caro, Tim

    2008-01-01

    Here I survey, collate and synthesize contrasting coloration in 5000 species of terrestrial mammals focusing on black and white pelage. After briefly reviewing alternative functional hypotheses for coloration in mammals, I examine nine colour patterns and combinations on different areas of the body and for each mammalian taxon to try to identify the most likely evolutionary drivers of contrasting coloration. Aposematism and perhaps conspecific signalling are the most consistent explanations for black and white pelage in mammals; background matching may explain white pelage. Evidence for contrasting coloration is being involved in crypsis through pattern blending, disruptive coloration or serving other functions, such as signalling dominance, lures, reducing eye glare or in temperature regulation has barely moved beyond anecdotal stages of investigation. Sexual dichromatism is limited in this taxon and its basis is unclear. Astonishingly, the functional significance of pelage coloration in most large charismatic black and white mammals that were new to science 150 years ago still remains a mystery. PMID:18990666

  16. Does moonlight increase predation risk? Meta-analysis reveals divergent responses of nocturnal mammals to lunar cycles.

    PubMed

    Prugh, Laura R; Golden, Christopher D

    2014-03-01

    The risk of predation strongly affects mammalian population dynamics and community interactions. Bright moonlight is widely believed to increase predation risk for nocturnal mammals by increasing the ability of predators to detect prey, but the potential for moonlight to increase detection of predators and the foraging efficiency of prey has largely been ignored. Studies have reported highly variable responses to moonlight among species, calling into question the assumption that moonlight increases risk. Here, we conducted a quantitative meta-analysis examining the effects of moonlight on the activity of 59 nocturnal mammal species to test the assumption that moonlight increases predation risk. We examined patterns of lunarphilia and lunarphobia across species in relation to factors such as trophic level, habitat cover preference and visual acuity. Across all species included in the meta-analysis, moonlight suppressed activity. The magnitude of suppression was similar to the presence of a predator in experimental studies of foraging rodents (13.6% and 18.7% suppression, respectively). Contrary to the expectation that moonlight increases predation risk for all prey species, however, moonlight effects were not clearly related to trophic level and were better explained by phylogenetic relatedness, visual acuity and habitat cover. Moonlight increased the activity of prey species that use vision as their primary sensory system and suppressed the activity of species that primarily use other senses (e.g. olfaction, echolocation), and suppression was strongest in open habitat types. Strong taxonomic patterns underlay these relationships: moonlight tended to increase primate activity, whereas it tended to suppress the activity of rodents, lagomorphs, bats and carnivores. These results indicate that visual acuity and habitat cover jointly moderate the effect of moonlight on predation risk, whereas trophic position has little effect. While the net effect of moonlight appears

  17. A Century of Change in Kenya's Mammal Communities: Increased Richness and Decreased Uniqueness in Six Protected Areas

    PubMed Central

    Tóth, Anikó B.; Lyons, S. Kathleen; Behrensmeyer, Anna K.

    2014-01-01

    The potential for large-scale biodiversity losses as a result of climate change and human impact presents major challenges for ecology and conservation science. Governments around the world have established national parks and wildlife reserves to help protect biodiversity, but there are few studies on the long-term consequences of this strategy. We use Kenya as a case study to investigate species richness and other attributes of mammal communities in 6 protected areas over the past century. Museum records from African expeditions that comprehensively sampled mammals from these same areas in the early 1900's provide a baseline for evaluating changes in species richness and community structure over time. We compare species lists assembled from archived specimens (1896–1950) to those of corresponding modern protected areas (1950–2013). Species richness in Kenya was stable or increased at 5 out of 6 sites from historical to modern times. Beta-diversity, in contrast, decreased across all sites. Potential biases such as variable historical vs. modern collection effort and detection of small-bodied, rare, and low-visibility species do not account for the observed results. We attribute the pattern of decreased beta diversity primarily to increased site occupancy by common species across all body size classes. Despite a decrease in land area available to wildlife, our data do not show the extinctions predicted by species-area relationships. Moreover, the results indicate that species-area curves based solely on protected areas could underestimate diversity because they do not account for mammal species whose ranges extend beyond protected area boundaries. We conclude that the 6 protected areas have been effective in preserving species richness in spite of continuing conversion of wild grasslands to cropland, but the overall decrease in beta diversity indicates a decline in the uniqueness of mammal communities that historically characterized Kenya's varied landscape

  18. A century of change in Kenya's mammal communities: increased richness and decreased uniqueness in six protected areas.

    PubMed

    Tóth, Anikó B; Lyons, S Kathleen; Behrensmeyer, Anna K

    2014-01-01

    The potential for large-scale biodiversity losses as a result of climate change and human impact presents major challenges for ecology and conservation science. Governments around the world have established national parks and wildlife reserves to help protect biodiversity, but there are few studies on the long-term consequences of this strategy. We use Kenya as a case study to investigate species richness and other attributes of mammal communities in 6 protected areas over the past century. Museum records from African expeditions that comprehensively sampled mammals from these same areas in the early 1900's provide a baseline for evaluating changes in species richness and community structure over time. We compare species lists assembled from archived specimens (1896-1950) to those of corresponding modern protected areas (1950-2013). Species richness in Kenya was stable or increased at 5 out of 6 sites from historical to modern times. Beta-diversity, in contrast, decreased across all sites. Potential biases such as variable historical vs. modern collection effort and detection of small-bodied, rare, and low-visibility species do not account for the observed results. We attribute the pattern of decreased beta diversity primarily to increased site occupancy by common species across all body size classes. Despite a decrease in land area available to wildlife, our data do not show the extinctions predicted by species-area relationships. Moreover, the results indicate that species-area curves based solely on protected areas could underestimate diversity because they do not account for mammal species whose ranges extend beyond protected area boundaries. We conclude that the 6 protected areas have been effective in preserving species richness in spite of continuing conversion of wild grasslands to cropland, but the overall decrease in beta diversity indicates a decline in the uniqueness of mammal communities that historically characterized Kenya's varied landscape.

  19. A new phylogeny for basal Trechnotheria and Cladotheria and affinities of South American endemic Late Cretaceous mammals.

    PubMed

    Averianov, Alexander O; Martin, Thomas; Lopatin, Alexey V

    2013-04-01

    The endemic South American mammals Meridiolestida, considered previously as dryolestoid cladotherians, are found to be non-cladotherian trechnotherians related to spalacotheriid symmetrodontans based on a parsimony analysis of 137 morphological characters among 44 taxa. Spalacotheriidae is the sister taxon to Meridiolestida, and the latter clade is derived from a primitive spalacolestine that migrated to South America from North America at the beginning of the Late Cretaceous. Meridiolestida survived until the early Paleocene (Peligrotherium) and early Miocene (Necrolestes) in South America, and their extinction is probably linked to the increasing competition with metatherian and eutherian tribosphenic mammals. The clade Meridiolestida plus Spalacotheriidae is the sister taxon to Cladotheria and forms a new clade Alethinotheria. Alethinotheria and its sister taxon Zhangheotheria, new clade (Zhangheotheriidae plus basal taxa), comprise Trechnotheria. Cladotheria is divided into Zatheria (plus stem taxa, including Amphitherium) and Dryolestida, including Dryolestidae and a paraphyletic array of basal dryolestidans (formerly classified as "Paurodontidae"). The South American Vincelestes and Groebertherium are basal dryolestidans.

  20. A new phylogeny for basal Trechnotheria and Cladotheria and affinities of South American endemic Late Cretaceous mammals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Averianov, Alexander O.; Martin, Thomas; Lopatin, Alexey V.

    2013-04-01

    The endemic South American mammals Meridiolestida, considered previously as dryolestoid cladotherians, are found to be non-cladotherian trechnotherians related to spalacotheriid symmetrodontans based on a parsimony analysis of 137 morphological characters among 44 taxa. Spalacotheriidae is the sister taxon to Meridiolestida, and the latter clade is derived from a primitive spalacolestine that migrated to South America from North America at the beginning of the Late Cretaceous. Meridiolestida survived until the early Paleocene ( Peligrotherium) and early Miocene ( Necrolestes) in South America, and their extinction is probably linked to the increasing competition with metatherian and eutherian tribosphenic mammals. The clade Meridiolestida plus Spalacotheriidae is the sister taxon to Cladotheria and forms a new clade Alethinotheria. Alethinotheria and its sister taxon Zhangheotheria, new clade (Zhangheotheriidae plus basal taxa), comprise Trechnotheria. Cladotheria is divided into Zatheria (plus stem taxa, including Amphitherium) and Dryolestida, including Dryolestidae and a paraphyletic array of basal dryolestidans (formerly classified as "Paurodontidae"). The South American Vincelestes and Groebertherium are basal dryolestidans.

  1. Can diving-induced tissue nitrogen supersaturation increase the chance of acoustically driven bubble growth in marine mammals?

    PubMed

    Houser, D S; Howard, R; Ridgway, S

    2001-11-21

    The potential for acoustically mediated causes of stranding in cetaceans (whales and dolphins) is of increasing concern given recent stranding events associated with anthropogenic acoustic activity. We examine a potentially debilitating non-auditory mechanism called rectified diffusion. Rectified diffusion causes gas bubble growth, which in an insonified animal may produce emboli, tissue separation and high, localized pressure in nervous tissue. Using the results of a dolphin dive study and a model of rectified diffusion for low-frequency exposure, we demonstrate that the diving behavior of cetaceans prior to an intense acoustic exposure may increase the chance of rectified diffusion. Specifically, deep diving and slow ascent/descent speed contributes to increased gas-tissue saturation, a condition that amplifies the likelihood of rectified diffusion. The depth of lung collapse limits nitrogen uptake per dive and the surface interval duration influences the amount of nitrogen washout from tissues between dives. Model results suggest that low-frequency rectified diffusion models need to be advanced, that the diving behavior of marine mammals of concern needs to be investigated to identify at-risk animals, and that more intensive studies of gas dynamics within diving marine mammals should be undertaken.

  2. Testing for Depéret's Rule (Body Size Increase) in Mammals using Combined Extinct and Extant Data

    PubMed Central

    Bokma, Folmer; Godinot, Marc; Maridet, Olivier; Ladevèze, Sandrine; Costeur, Loïc; Solé, Floréal; Gheerbrant, Emmanuel; Peigné, Stéphane; Jacques, Florian; Laurin, Michel

    2016-01-01

    Whether or not evolutionary lineages in general show a tendency to increase in body size has often been discussed. This tendency has been dubbed “Cope's rule” but because Cope never hypothesized it, we suggest renaming it after Depéret, who formulated it clearly in 1907. Depéret's rule has traditionally been studied using fossil data, but more recently a number of studies have used present-day species. While several paleontological studies of Cenozoic placental mammals have found support for increasing body size, most studies of extant placentals have failed to detect such a trend. Here, we present a method to combine information from present-day species with fossil data in a Bayesian phylogenetic framework. We apply the method to body mass estimates of a large number of extant and extinct mammal species, and find strong support for Depéret's rule. The tendency for size increase appears to be driven not by evolution toward larger size in established species, but by processes related to the emergence of new species. Our analysis shows that complementary data from extant and extinct species can greatly improve inference of macroevolutionary processes. PMID:26508768

  3. Small mammals and high elevation vegetation in Yosemite National Park could be responding to smaller temperature increases than previously reported

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Conklin, D. R.; Daly, C.

    2009-12-01

    Recent research related the dynamics of Sierra Nevada subalpine conifers to 20th century warming, and used temperature records from Yosemite National Park headquarters and two other locations outside the Park to estimate a 3.7°C rise in average minimum temperature. More recently, observed elevational shifts of small mammals in Yosemite National Park were linked to the same upward trend in minimum monthly temperatures. However, our analysis of spatially explicit, monthly time series of temperatures, derived using the PRISM model, suggests that the large increase in minimum monthly temperatures may be limited to Yosemite Valley, where the Park headquarters itself is located. PRISM bases its interpolations on observations from 195 temperature recording stations within and near Yosemite National Park. Minimum monthly temperatures over most of the Park do not show a centennial-scale trend, but for the final quarter of the century they do trend upwards by 1°C. Our new estimate of the spatial and temporal pattern of 20th century changes in minimum temperatures in the Park could affect conclusions about the relative importance for subalpine conifers of the centennial trend compared to interdecadal variability of temperature. It also raises a question of whether the elevational shifts of the mammals took place only in the latter part of the century, and in response to smaller temperature increases. It challenges us to accept that these plants and animals are responding to smaller changes in minimum temperatures than previously estimated or else to find reasons other than an increase in minimum temperatures for the changes that have been documented, by these and other studies, over the last century in Yosemite.

  4. Density triggers maternal hormones that increase adaptive offspring growth in a wild mammal.

    PubMed

    Dantzer, Ben; Newman, Amy E M; Boonstra, Rudy; Palme, Rupert; Boutin, Stan; Humphries, Murray M; McAdam, Andrew G

    2013-06-07

    In fluctuating environments, mothers may enhance the fitness of their offspring by adjusting offspring phenotypes to match the environment they will experience at independence. In free-ranging red squirrels, natural selection on offspring postnatal growth rates varies according to population density, with selection favoring faster-growing offspring under high-density conditions. We show that exposing mothers to high-density cues, accomplished via playbacks of territorial vocalizations, led to increased offspring growth rates in the absence of additional food resources. Experimental elevation of actual and perceived density induced higher maternal glucocorticoid levels, and females with naturally or experimentally increased glucocorticoids produced offspring that grew faster than controls. Therefore, social cues reflecting population density were sufficient to elicit increased offspring growth through an adaptive hormone-mediated maternal effect.

  5. Improved phylogenomic taxon sampling noticeably affects nonbilaterian relationships.

    PubMed

    Pick, K S; Philippe, H; Schreiber, F; Erpenbeck, D; Jackson, D J; Wrede, P; Wiens, M; Alié, A; Morgenstern, B; Manuel, M; Wörheide, G

    2010-09-01

    Despite expanding data sets and advances in phylogenomic methods, deep-level metazoan relationships remain highly controversial. Recent phylogenomic analyses depart from classical concepts in recovering ctenophores as the earliest branching metazoan taxon and propose a sister-group relationship between sponges and cnidarians (e.g., Dunn CW, Hejnol A, Matus DQ, et al. (18 co-authors). 2008. Broad phylogenomic sampling improves resolution of the animal tree of life. Nature 452:745-749). Here, we argue that these results are artifacts stemming from insufficient taxon sampling and long-branch attraction (LBA). By increasing taxon sampling from previously unsampled nonbilaterians and using an identical gene set to that reported by Dunn et al., we recover monophyletic Porifera as the sister group to all other Metazoa. This suggests that the basal position of the fast-evolving Ctenophora proposed by Dunn et al. was due to LBA and that broad taxon sampling is of fundamental importance to metazoan phylogenomic analyses. Additionally, saturation in the Dunn et al. character set is comparatively high, possibly contributing to the poor support for some nonbilaterian nodes.

  6. Improved Phylogenomic Taxon Sampling Noticeably Affects Nonbilaterian Relationships

    PubMed Central

    Pick, K.S.; Philippe, H.; Schreiber, F.; Erpenbeck, D.; Jackson, D.J.; Wrede, P.; Wiens, M.; Alié, A.; Morgenstern, B.; Manuel, M.; Wörheide, G.

    2010-01-01

    Despite expanding data sets and advances in phylogenomic methods, deep-level metazoan relationships remain highly controversial. Recent phylogenomic analyses depart from classical concepts in recovering ctenophores as the earliest branching metazoan taxon and propose a sister-group relationship between sponges and cnidarians (e.g., Dunn CW, Hejnol A, Matus DQ, et al. (18 co-authors). 2008. Broad phylogenomic sampling improves resolution of the animal tree of life. Nature 452:745–749). Here, we argue that these results are artifacts stemming from insufficient taxon sampling and long-branch attraction (LBA). By increasing taxon sampling from previously unsampled nonbilaterians and using an identical gene set to that reported by Dunn et al., we recover monophyletic Porifera as the sister group to all other Metazoa. This suggests that the basal position of the fast-evolving Ctenophora proposed by Dunn et al. was due to LBA and that broad taxon sampling is of fundamental importance to metazoan phylogenomic analyses. Additionally, saturation in the Dunn et al. character set is comparatively high, possibly contributing to the poor support for some nonbilaterian nodes. PMID:20378579

  7. Increasing longevity through caloric restriction or rapamycin feeding in mammals: common mechanisms for common outcomes?

    PubMed

    Cox, Lynne S; Mattison, Julie A

    2009-09-01

    Significant extension of lifespan in important mammalian species is bound to attract the attention not only of the aging research community, but also the media and the wider public. Two recent papers published by Harrison et al. (2009) in Nature and by Colman et al. (2009) in Science report increased longevity of mice fed with rapamycin and of rhesus monkeys undergoing caloric restriction, respectively. These papers have generated considerable debate in the aging community. Here we assess what is new about these findings, how they fit with our knowledge of lifespan extension from other studies and what prospects this new work holds out for improvements in human longevity and human health span.

  8. Molecular phylogeny and divergence times of Malagasy tenrecs: Influence of data partitioning and taxon sampling on dating analyses

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    Background Malagasy tenrecs belong to the Afrotherian clade of placental mammals and comprise three subfamilies divided in eight genera (Tenrecinae: Tenrec, Echinops, Setifer and Hemicentetes; Oryzorictinae: Oryzorictes, Limnogale and Microgale; Geogalinae:Geogale). The diversity of their morphology and incomplete taxon sampling made it difficult until now to resolve phylogenies based on either morphology or molecular data for this group. Therefore, in order to delineate the evolutionary history of this family, phylogenetic and dating analyses were performed on a four nuclear genes dataset (ADRA2B, AR, GHR and vWF) including all Malagasy tenrec genera. Moreover, the influence of both taxon sampling and data partitioning on the accuracy of the estimated ages were assessed. Results Within Afrotheria the vast majority of the nodes received a high support, including the grouping of hyrax with sea cow and the monophyly of both Afroinsectivora (Macroscelidea + Afrosoricida) and Afroinsectiphillia (Tubulidentata + Afroinsectivora). Strongly supported relationships were also recovered among all tenrec genera, allowing us to firmly establish the grouping of Geogale with Oryzorictinae, and to confirm the previously hypothesized nesting of Limnogale within the genus Microgale. The timeline of Malagasy tenrec diversification does not reflect a fast adaptive radiation after the arrival on Madagascar, indicating that morphological specializations have appeared over the whole evolutionary history of the family, and not just in a short period after colonization. In our analysis, age estimates at the root of a clade became older with increased taxon sampling of that clade. Moreover an augmentation of data partitions resulted in older age estimates as well, whereas standard deviations increased when more extreme partition schemes were used. Conclusion Our results provide as yet the best resolved gene tree comprising all Malagasy tenrec genera, and may lead to a revision of tenrec

  9. Placental mammal diversification and the Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary.

    PubMed

    Springer, Mark S; Murphy, William J; Eizirik, Eduardo; O'Brien, Stephen J

    2003-02-04

    Competing hypotheses for the timing of the placental mammal radiation focus on whether extant placental orders originated and diversified before or after the Cretaceous-Tertiary (KT) boundary. Molecular studies that have addressed this issue suffer from single calibration points, unwarranted assumptions about the molecular clock, andor taxon sampling that lacks representatives of all placental orders. We investigated this problem using the largest available molecular data set for placental mammals, which includes segments of 19 nuclear and three mitochondrial genes for representatives of all extant placental orders. We used the ThorneKishino method, which permits simultaneous constraints from the fossil record and allows rates of molecular evolution to vary on different branches of a phylogenetic tree. Analyses that used different sets of fossil constraints, different priors for the base of Placentalia, and different data partitions all support interordinal divergences in the Cretaceous followed by intraordinal diversification mostly after the KT boundary. Four placental orders show intraordinal diversification that predates the KT boundary, but only by an average of 10 million years. In contrast to some molecular studies that date the rat-mouse split as old as 46 million years, our results show improved agreement with the fossil record and place this split at 16-23 million years. To test the hypothesis that molecular estimates of Cretaceous divergence times are an artifact of increased body size subsequent to the KT boundary, we also performed analyses with a "KT body size" taxon set. In these analyses, interordinal splits remained in the Cretaceous.

  10. Exotic Mammal Laparoscopy.

    PubMed

    Sladakovic, Izidora; Divers, Stephen J

    2016-01-01

    Laparoscopy is an evolving field in veterinary medicine, and there is an increased interest in using laparoscopic techniques in nondomestic mammals, including zoo animals, wildlife, and exotic pets. The aim of this article is to summarize the approach to laparoscopic procedures, including instrumentation, patient selection and preparation, and surgical approaches, and to review the current literature on laparoscopy in exotic mammals.

  11. Prolonged food deprivation increases mRNA expression of deiodinase 1 and 2, and thyroid hormone receptor β-1 in a fasting-adapted mammal.

    PubMed

    Martinez, Bridget; Soñanez-Organis, José G; Vázquez-Medina, José Pablo; Viscarra, Jose A; MacKenzie, Duncan S; Crocker, Daniel E; Ortiz, Rudy M

    2013-12-15

    Food deprivation in mammals is typically associated with reduced thyroid hormone (TH) concentrations and deiodinase content and activity to suppress metabolism. However, in prolonged-fasted, metabolically active elephant seal pups, TH levels are maintained, if not elevated. The functional relevance of this apparent paradox is unknown and demonstrates variability in the regulation of TH levels, metabolism and function in food-deprived mammals. To address our hypothesis that cellular TH-mediated activity is upregulated with fasting duration, we quantified the mRNA expression and protein content of adipose and muscle deiodinase type I (DI1) and type II (DI2), and TH receptor beta-1 (THrβ-1) after 1, 3 and 7 weeks of fasting in northern elephant seal pups (N=5-7 per week). Fasting did not decrease the concentrations of plasma thyroid stimulating hormone, total triiodothyronine (tT3), free T3, total thyroxine (tT4) or free T4, suggesting that the hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis is not suppressed, but rather maintained during fasting. Mean mRNA expression of adipose DI1 and DI2 increased threefold and fourfold, respectively, and 20- and 30-fold, respectively, in muscle. With the exception of adipose DI1, protein expression of adipose DI2 and muscle DI1 and DI2 increased twofold to fourfold. Fasting also increased adipose (fivefold) and muscle (fourfold) THrβ-1 mRNA expression, suggesting that the mechanisms mediating cellular TH activity are upregulated with prolonged fasting. The data demonstrate a unique, atypical mechanism of TH activity and regulation in mammals adapted to prolonged food deprivation in which the potential responsiveness of peripheral tissues and cellular TH activity are increased, which may contribute to their lipid-based metabolism.

  12. Mean annual precipitation explains spatiotemporal patterns of Cenozoic mammal beta diversity and latitudinal diversity gradients in North America.

    PubMed

    Fraser, Danielle; Hassall, Christopher; Gorelick, Root; Rybczynski, Natalia

    2014-01-01

    Spatial diversity patterns are thought to be driven by climate-mediated processes. However, temporal patterns of community composition remain poorly studied. We provide two complementary analyses of North American mammal diversity, using (i) a paleontological dataset (2077 localities with 2493 taxon occurrences) spanning 21 discrete subdivisions of the Cenozoic based on North American Land Mammal Ages (36 Ma--present), and (ii) climate space model predictions for 744 extant mammals under eight scenarios of future climate change. Spatial variation in fossil mammal community structure (β diversity) is highest at intermediate values of continental mean annual precipitation (MAP) estimated from paleosols (∼ 450 mm/year) and declines under both wetter and drier conditions, reflecting diversity patterns of modern mammals. Latitudinal gradients in community change (latitudinal turnover gradients, aka LTGs) increase in strength through the Cenozoic, but also show a cyclical pattern that is significantly explained by MAP. In general, LTGs are weakest when continental MAP is highest, similar to modern tropical ecosystems in which latitudinal diversity gradients are weak or undetectable. Projections under modeled climate change show no substantial change in β diversity or LTG strength for North American mammals. Our results suggest that similar climate-mediated mechanisms might drive spatial and temporal patterns of community composition in both fossil and extant mammals. We also provide empirical evidence that the ecological processes on which climate space models are based are insufficient for accurately forecasting long-term mammalian response to anthropogenic climate change and inclusion of historical parameters may be essential.

  13. [Jaws of herbivorous mammals].

    PubMed

    Konishi, Shogo

    2005-08-01

    The jaws of herbivorous mammals are characterized by their large occlusal surface of the molar; high crown of the molar; long snout; etc. However, elephants, the biggest herbivorous mammal, have other characteristics. In the evolutionary trends of proboscidean skulls, concomitant with the increase in tusk size comes on the enlargement, antero-posterior shortening, dorso-ventral elongation of the cranium with increasing cheek teeth size. Naturally, the jaw follows the same evolutionary trends as the cranium.

  14. Foundational issues concerning taxa and taxon names.

    PubMed

    Ereshefsky, Marc

    2007-04-01

    In a series of articles, Rieppel (2005, Biol. Philos. 20:465-487; 2006a, Cladistics 22:186-197; 2006b, Systematist 26:5-9), Keller et al. (2003, Bot. Rev. 69:93-110), and Nixon and Carpenter (2000, Cladistics 16:298-318) criticize the philosophical foundations of the PhyloCode. They argue that species and higher taxa are not individuals, and they reject the view that taxon names are rigid designators. Furthermore, they charge supporters of the individuality thesis and rigid designator theory with assuming essentialism, committing logical inconsistencies, and offering proposals that render taxonomy untestable. These charges are unsound. Such charges turn on confusions over rigid designator theory and the distinction between kinds and individuals. In addition, Rieppel's, Keller et al.'s, and Nixon and Carpenter's proposed alternatives are no better and have their own problems. The individuality thesis and rigid designator theory should not be quickly abandoned.

  15. Increased brain size in mammals is associated with size variations in gene families with cell signalling, chemotaxis and immune-related functions.

    PubMed

    Castillo-Morales, Atahualpa; Monzón-Sandoval, Jimena; Urrutia, Araxi O; Gutiérrez, Humberto

    2014-01-22

    Genomic determinants underlying increased encephalization across mammalian lineages are unknown. Whole genome comparisons have revealed large and frequent changes in the size of gene families, and it has been proposed that these variations could play a major role in shaping morphological and physiological differences among species. Using a genome-wide comparative approach, we examined changes in gene family size (GFS) and degree of encephalization in 39 fully sequenced mammalian species and found a significant over-representation of GFS variations in line with increased encephalization in mammals. We found that this relationship is not accounted for by known correlates of brain size such as maximum lifespan or body size and is not explained by phylogenetic relatedness. Genes involved in chemotaxis, immune regulation and cell signalling-related functions are significantly over-represented among those gene families most highly correlated with encephalization. Genes within these families are prominently expressed in the human brain, particularly the cortex, and organized in co-expression modules that display distinct temporal patterns of expression in the developing cortex. Our results suggest that changes in GFS associated with encephalization represent an evolutionary response to the specific functional requirements underlying increased brain size in mammals.

  16. Molecular phylogenetics and the origins of placental mammals.

    PubMed

    Murphy, W J; Eizirik, E; Johnson, W E; Zhang, Y P; Ryder, O A; O'Brien, S J

    2001-02-01

    The precise hierarchy of ancient divergence events that led to the present assemblage of modern placental mammals has been an area of controversy among morphologists, palaeontologists and molecular evolutionists. Here we address the potential weaknesses of limited character and taxon sampling in a comprehensive molecular phylogenetic analysis of 64 species sampled across all extant orders of placental mammals. We examined sequence variation in 18 homologous gene segments (including nearly 10,000 base pairs) that were selected for maximal phylogenetic informativeness in resolving the hierarchy of early mammalian divergence. Phylogenetic analyses identify four primary superordinal clades: (I) Afrotheria (elephants, manatees, hyraxes, tenrecs, aardvark and elephant shrews); (II) Xenarthra (sloths, anteaters and armadillos); (III) Glires (rodents and lagomorphs), as a sister taxon to primates, flying lemurs and tree shrews; and (IV) the remaining orders of placental mammals (cetaceans, artiodactyls, perissodactyls, carnivores, pangolins, bats and core insectivores). Our results provide new insight into the pattern of the early placental mammal radiation.

  17. Novel symptomatology and changing epidemiology of domoic acid toxicosis in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus): an increasing risk to marine mammal health.

    PubMed

    Goldstein, T; Mazet, J A K; Zabka, T S; Langlois, G; Colegrove, K M; Silver, M; Bargu, S; Van Dolah, F; Leighfield, T; Conrad, P A; Barakos, J; Williams, D C; Dennison, S; Haulena, M; Gulland, F M D

    2008-02-07

    Harmful algal blooms are increasing worldwide, including those of Pseudo-nitzschia spp. producing domoic acid off the California coast. This neurotoxin was first shown to cause mortality of marine mammals in 1998. A decade of monitoring California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) health since then has indicated that changes in the symptomatology and epidemiology of domoic acid toxicosis in this species are associated with the increase in toxigenic blooms. Two separate clinical syndromes now exist: acute domoic acid toxicosis as has been previously documented, and a second novel neurological syndrome characterized by epilepsy described here associated with chronic consequences of previous sub-lethal exposure to the toxin. This study indicates that domoic acid causes chronic damage to California sea lions and that these health effects are increasing.

  18. Novel symptomatology and changing epidemiology of domoic acid toxicosis in California sea lions (Zalophus californianus): an increasing risk to marine mammal health

    PubMed Central

    Goldstein, T; Mazet, J.A.K; Zabka, T.S; Langlois, G; Colegrove, K.M; Silver, M; Bargu, S; Van Dolah, F; Leighfield, T; Conrad, P.A; Barakos, J; Williams, D.C; Dennison, S; Haulena, M; Gulland, F.M.D

    2007-01-01

    Harmful algal blooms are increasing worldwide, including those of Pseudo-nitzschia spp. producing domoic acid off the California coast. This neurotoxin was first shown to cause mortality of marine mammals in 1998. A decade of monitoring California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) health since then has indicated that changes in the symptomatology and epidemiology of domoic acid toxicosis in this species are associated with the increase in toxigenic blooms. Two separate clinical syndromes now exist: acute domoic acid toxicosis as has been previously documented, and a second novel neurological syndrome characterized by epilepsy described here associated with chronic consequences of previous sub-lethal exposure to the toxin. This study indicates that domoic acid causes chronic damage to California sea lions and that these health effects are increasing. PMID:18006409

  19. Increased expression of X-linked genes in mammals is associated with a higher stability of transcripts and an increased ribosome density.

    PubMed

    Faucillion, Marie-Line; Larsson, Jan

    2015-03-18

    Mammalian sex chromosomes evolved from the degeneration of one homolog of a pair of ancestral autosomes, the proto-Y. This resulted in a gene dose imbalance that is believed to be restored (partially or fully) through upregulation of gene expression from the single active X-chromosome in both sexes by a dosage compensatory mechanism. We analyzed multiple genome-wide RNA stability data sets and found significantly longer average half-lives for X-chromosome transcripts than for autosomal transcripts in various human cell lines, both male and female, and in mice. Analysis of ribosome profiling data shows that ribosome density is higher on X-chromosome transcripts than on autosomal transcripts in both humans and mice, suggesting that the higher stability is causally linked to a higher translation rate. Our results and observations are in accordance with a dosage compensatory upregulation of expressed X-linked genes. We therefore propose that differential mRNA stability and translation rates of the autosomes and sex chromosomes contribute to an evolutionarily conserved dosage compensation mechanism in mammals.

  20. Interaction between Locale and Taxon Strategies in Human Spatial Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Redhead, Edward S.; Hamilton, Derek A.

    2007-01-01

    Three computer-based experiments which tested human participants in a non-immersive virtual watermaze task sought to determine factors which dictate whether the presence of a visual platform disrupts locale learning and taxon learning. In Experiment 1, the visible platform disrupted locale but not taxon learning based on viewpoint-independent and…

  1. Likelihood inference of non-constant diversification rates with incomplete taxon sampling.

    PubMed

    Höhna, Sebastian

    2014-01-01

    Large-scale phylogenies provide a valuable source to study background diversification rates and investigate if the rates have changed over time. Unfortunately most large-scale, dated phylogenies are sparsely sampled (fewer than 5% of the described species) and taxon sampling is not uniform. Instead, taxa are frequently sampled to obtain at least one representative per subgroup (e.g. family) and thus to maximize diversity (diversified sampling). So far, such complications have been ignored, potentially biasing the conclusions that have been reached. In this study I derive the likelihood of a birth-death process with non-constant (time-dependent) diversification rates and diversified taxon sampling. Using simulations I test if the true parameters and the sampling method can be recovered when the trees are small or medium sized (fewer than 200 taxa). The results show that the diversification rates can be inferred and the estimates are unbiased for large trees but are biased for small trees (fewer than 50 taxa). Furthermore, model selection by means of Akaike's Information Criterion favors the true model if the true rates differ sufficiently from alternative models (e.g. the birth-death model is recovered if the extinction rate is large and compared to a pure-birth model). Finally, I applied six different diversification rate models--ranging from a constant-rate pure birth process to a decreasing speciation rate birth-death process but excluding any rate shift models--on three large-scale empirical phylogenies (ants, mammals and snakes with respectively 149, 164 and 41 sampled species). All three phylogenies were constructed by diversified taxon sampling, as stated by the authors. However only the snake phylogeny supported diversified taxon sampling. Moreover, a parametric bootstrap test revealed that none of the tested models provided a good fit to the observed data. The model assumptions, such as homogeneous rates across species or no rate shifts, appear to be

  2. Marine Mammals.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Meith, Nikki

    Marine mammals have not only fascinated and inspired human beings for thousands of years, but they also support a big business by providing flesh for sea-borne factories, sustaining Arctic lifestyles and traditions, and attracting tourists to ocean aquaria. While they are being harpooned, bludgeoned, shot, netted, and trained to jump through…

  3. Demographic consequences of increased winter births in a large aseasonally breeding mammal (Bos taurus) in response to climate change.

    PubMed

    Burthe, Sarah; Butler, Adam; Searle, Kate R; Hall, Stephen J G; Thackeray, Stephen J; Wanless, Sarah

    2011-11-01

    1. Studies examining changes in the scheduling of breeding in response to climate change have focused on species with well-defined breeding seasons. Species exhibiting year-round breeding have received little attention and the magnitudes of any responses are unknown. 2. We investigated phenological data for an enclosed feral population of cattle (Bos taurus L.) in northern England exhibiting year-round breeding. This population is relatively free of human interference. 3. We assessed whether the timing of births had changed over the last 60 years, in response to increasing winter and spring temperatures, changes in herd density, and a regime of lime fertilisation. 4. Median birth date became earlier by 1·0 days per year. Analyses of the seasonal distribution of calving dates showed that significantly fewer calves were born in summer (decline from 44% of total births to 20%) and significantly more in winter (increase from 12% to 30%) over the study period. The most pronounced changes occurred in winter, with significant increases in both the proportion and number of births. Winter births arise from conceptions in the previous spring, and we considered models that investigated climate and weather variables associated with the winter preceding and the spring of conceptions. 5. The proportion of winter births was higher when the onset of the plant growing season was earlier during the spring of conceptions. This relationship was much weaker during years when the site had been fertilised with lime, suggesting that increased forage biomass was over-riding the impacts of changing plant phenology. When the onset of the growing season was late, winter births increased with female density. 6. Recruitment estimates from a stage-structured state-space population model were significantly negatively correlated with the proportion of births in the preceding winter, suggesting that calves born in winter are less likely to survive than those born in other seasons. 7.

  4. Increasing levels of long-chain perfluorocarboxylic acids (PFCAs) in Arctic and North Atlantic marine mammals, 1984-2009.

    PubMed

    Rotander, Anna; Kärrman, Anna; van Bavel, Bert; Polder, Anuschka; Rigét, Frank; Auðunsson, Guðjón Atli; Víkingsson, Gísli; Gabrielsen, Geir Wing; Bloch, Dorete; Dam, Maria

    2012-01-01

    Temporal variations in concentrations of perfluorinated carboxylic acids (PFCAs) and sulfonic acids (PFSAs), including perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoate (PFOA) structural isomers, were examined in livers of pilot whale (Globicephala melas), ringed seal (Phoca hisida), minke whale (Balaenoptera acutorostrata), harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena), hooded seal (Cystophora cristata), Atlantic white-sided dolphin (Lagenorhynchus acutus) and in muscle tissue of fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus). The sampling spanned over 20 years (1984-2009) and covered a large geographical area of the North Atlantic and West Greenland. Liver and muscle samples were homogenized, extracted with acetonitrile, cleaned up using hexane and solid phase extraction (SPE), and analyzed by liquid chromatography with negative electrospray tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS). In general, the levels of the long-chained PFCAs (C9-C12) increased whereas the levels of PFOS remained steady over the studied period. The PFOS isomer pattern in pilot whale liver was relatively constant over the sampling years. However, in ringed seals there seemed to be a decrease in linear PFOS (L-PFOS) with time, going from 91% in 1984 to 83% in 2006.

  5. Audubon Mammal Study Program.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    National Audubon Society, New York, NY.

    Included are an illustrated student reader, "The Story of Mammals," a leaders' guide, a large wall chart picturing 39 North American mammals, and a separate booklet describing the mammals on the wall chart. The student reader presents these main topics: What Is a Mammal?; How Mammals Differ From Each Other; Where, When, and How To Find Mammals;…

  6. PB2 substitutions V598T/I increase the virulence of H7N9 influenza A virus in mammals.

    PubMed

    Hu, Meng; Yuan, Shuofeng; Zhang, Ke; Singh, Kailash; Ma, Qiang; Zhou, Jie; Chu, Hin; Zheng, Bo-Jian

    2017-01-15

    PB2 is one of the subunits of the influenza A virus (IAV) polymerase complex. By bioinformatics analysis we identified PB2 substitutions at positions 389 and 598 among IAV isolates from humans, which might associate with viral pathogenicity. To evaluate the biological significance of these substitutions, PB2-K389R and -V598T/I mutant viruses of avian H7N9 IAVs were generated by reverse genetics. Compared to the wild type, the mutant viruses displayed an enhanced growth capacity in human and mammalian cells. Meanwhile, they presented increased transcription and replication by producing higher levels of viral mRNA, cRNA and vRNA. Minireplicon assays indicated that the polymerase activity was elevated by these substitutions. Notably, the PB2-V598T/I substitutions substantially increased virus replication and virulence in mice. Together, we demonstrated that the substitutions PB2-V598T/I contributed to higher IAV replication and virulence in mammals, which added to the knowledge of IAV virulence determinants and benefited the surveillance of IAVs.

  7. Temporal, spatial and ecological dynamics of speciation among amphi-Beringian small mammals

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Hope, Andrew G.; Takebayashi, Naoki; Galbreath, Kurt E.; Talbot, Sandra L.; Cook, Joseph A.

    2013-01-01

    Quaternary climate cycles played an important role in promoting diversification across the Northern Hemisphere, although details of the mechanisms driving evolutionary change are still poorly resolved. In a comparative phylogeographical framework, we investigate temporal, spatial and ecological components of evolution within a suite of Holarctic small mammals. We test a hypothesis of simultaneous divergence among multiple taxon pairs, investigating time to coalescence and demographic change for each taxon in response to a combination of climate and geography.

  8. Taxon-specific responses of Southern Ocean diatoms to Fe enrichment revealed by synchrotron radiation FTIR microspectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sackett, O.; Armand, L.; Beardall, J.; Hill, R.; Doblin, M.; Connelly, C.; Howes, J.; Stuart, B.; Ralph, P.; Heraud, P.

    2014-10-01

    Photosynthesis by marine diatoms contributes substantially to global biogeochemical cycling and ecosystem productivity. It is widely accepted that diatoms are extremely sensitive to changes in Fe availability, with numerous in situ experiments demonstrating rapid growth and increased export of elements (e.g. C, Si and Fe) from surface waters as a result of Fe addition. Less is known about the effects of Fe enrichment on the phenotypes of diatoms, such as associated changes in nutritional value - furthermore, data on taxon-specific responses are almost non-existent. Enhanced supply of nutrient-rich waters along the coast of the subantarctic Kerguelen Island provide a valuable opportunity to examine the responses of phytoplankton to natural Fe enrichment. Here we demonstrate the use of synchrotron radiation Fourier Transform Infrared (SR-FTIR) microspectroscopy to analyse changes in the macromolecular composition of diatoms collected along the coast and plateau of Kerguelen Island, Southern Ocean. SR-FTIR microspectroscopy enabled the analysis of individual diatom cells from mixed communities of field-collected samples, thereby providing insight into in situ taxon-specific responses in relation to changes in Fe availability. Phenotypic responses were taxon-specific in terms of intraspecific variability and changes in proteins, amino acids, phosphorylated molecules, silicate/silicic acid and carbohydrates. In contrast to some previous studies, silicate/silicic acid levels increased under Fe enrichment, in conjunction with increases in carbohydrate stores. The highly abundant taxon Fragilariopsis kerguelensis displayed a higher level of phenotypic plasticity than Pseudo-nitzschia spp., while analysis of the data pooled across all measured taxa showed different patterns in macromolecular composition compared to those for individual taxon. This study demonstrates that taxon-specific responses to Fe enrichment may not always be accurately reflected by bulk community

  9. Taxon-specific responses of Southern Ocean diatoms to Fe enrichment revealed by synchrotron radiation FTIR microspectroscopy

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sackett, O.; Armand, L.; Beardall, J.; Hill, R.; Doblin, M.; Connelly, C.; Howes, J.; Stuart, B.; Ralph, P.; Heraud, P.

    2014-05-01

    Photosynthesis by marine diatoms contributes substantially to global biogeochemical cycling and ecosystem productivity. It is widely accepted that diatoms are extremely sensitive to changes in Fe availability, with numerous in situ experiments demonstrating rapid growth and increased export of elements (e.g. C, Si and Fe) from surface waters as a result of Fe addition. Less is known about the effects of Fe enrichment on the phenotypes of diatoms, such as associated changes in nutritional value, furthermore data on taxon-specific responses is almost non-existent. Enhanced supply of nutrient-rich waters along the coast of the subantarctic Kerguelen Island provide a valuable opportunity to examine the responses of phytoplankton to natural Fe enrichment. Here we demonstrate the use of synchrotron radiation Fourier Transform Infrared (SR-FTIR) microspectroscopy to analyse changes in the macromolecular composition of diatoms collected along the coast and plateau of Kerguelen Island, Southern Ocean. SR-FTIR microspectroscopy enabled the analysis of individual diatom cells from mixed communities of field-collected samples, thereby providing insight into in situ taxon-specific responses in relation to changes in Fe availability. Phenotypic responses were taxon-specific in terms of intraspecific variability and changes in proteins, amino acids, phosphorylated molecules, silicate and carbohydrates. In contrast to some previous studies, silicate levels increased under Fe enrichment, in conjunction with increases in carbohydrate stores. The highly abundant taxon Fragilariopsis kerguelensis displayed a higher level of phenotypic plasticity than Pseudo-nitzschia spp., while analysis of the data pooled across all measured taxa showed different patterns in macromolecular composition compared to those for individual taxon. This study demonstrates that taxon-specific responses to Fe enrichment may not always be accurately reflected by bulk community measurements, highlighting the

  10. Mitochondrial data are not suitable for resolving placental mammal phylogeny.

    PubMed

    Morgan, Claire C; Creevey, Christopher J; O'Connell, Mary J

    2014-12-01

    Mitochondrial data have traditionally been used in reconstructing a variety of species phylogenies. The low rates of recombination and thorough characterization of mitochondrial data across vertebrate species make it a particularly attractive phylogenetic marker. The relatively low number of fully sequenced mammal genomes and the lack of extensive sampling within Superorders have posed a serious problem for reaching agreement on the placement mammal species. The use of mitochondrial data sequences from large numbers of mammals could serve to circumvent the taxon-sampling deficit. Here we assess the suitability of mitochondrial data as a phylogenetic marker in mammal phylogenetics. MtDNA datasets of mammal origin have been filtered as follows: (i) we have sampled sparsely across the phylogenetic tree, (ii) we have constrained our sampling to genes with high taxon coverage, (iii) we have categorised rates across sites in a phylogeny independent manner and have removed fast evolving sites, and (iv), we have sampled from very shallow divergence times to reduce phylogenetic conflict. However, topologies obtained using these filters are not consistent with previous studies and are discordant across different genes. Individual mitochondrial genes, and indeed all mitochondrial genes analysed as a supermatrix, resulted in poor resolution of the species phylogeny. Overall, our study highlights the limitations of mitochondrial data, not only for resolving deep divergences and but also for shallow divergences in the mammal phylogeny.

  11. 7 CFR 360.500 - Petitions to add a taxon to the noxious weed list.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Petitions to add a taxon to the noxious weed list. 360... to add a taxon to the noxious weed list. A person may petition the Administrator to have a taxon added to the noxious weeds lists in § 360.200. Details of the petitioning process for adding a taxon...

  12. Mammals of the Sea.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Naturescope, 1986

    1986-01-01

    Presents information on sea mammals, including definitions and characteristics of cetaceans, pinnipeds, and sirenians. Contains descriptions of the teaching activities "Whale Music,""Draw A Whale to Scale,""Adopt a Sea Mammal," and "Sea Mammal Sleuths." (TW)

  13. Increasing density leads to generalization in both coarse-grained habitat selection and fine-grained resource selection in a large mammal.

    PubMed

    van Beest, Floris M; Uzal, Antonio; Vander Wal, Eric; Laforge, Michel P; Contasti, Adrienne L; Colville, David; McLoughlin, Philip D

    2014-01-01

    Density is a fundamental driver of many ecological processes including habitat selection. Theory on density-dependent habitat selection predicts that animals should be distributed relative to profitability of habitat, resulting in reduced specialization in selection (i.e. generalization) as density increases and competition intensifies. Despite mounting empirical support for density-dependent habitat selection using isodars to describe coarse-grained (interhabitat) animal movements, we know little of how density affects fine-grained resource selection of animals within habitats [e.g. using resource selection functions (RSFs)]. Using isodars and RSFs, we tested whether density simultaneously modified habitat selection and within-habitat resource selection in a rapidly growing population of feral horses (Equus ferus caballus Linnaeus; Sable Island, Nova Scotia, Canada; 42% increase in population size from 2008 to 2012). Among three heterogeneous habitat zones on Sable Island describing population clusters distributed along a west-east resource gradient (west-central-east), isodars revealed that horses used available habitat in a density-dependent manner. Intercepts and slopes of isodars demonstrated a pattern of habitat selection that first favoured the west, which generalized to include central and east habitats with increasing population size consistent with our understanding of habitat quality on Sable Island. Resource selection functions revealed that horses selected for vegetation associations similarly at two scales of extent (total island and within-habitat zone). When densities were locally low, horses were able to select for sites of the most productive forage (grasslands) relative to those of poorer quality. However, as local carrying capacity was approached, selection for the best of available forage types weakened while selection for lower-quality vegetation increased (and eventually exceeded that of grasslands). Isodars can effectively describe coarse

  14. What Makes a Mammal a Mammal?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Naturescope, 1986

    1986-01-01

    Describes the distinctive characteristics of mammals and compares modern mammals with their prehistoric relatives as well as with other animal groups. Includes activities and ready-to-copy games, illustrations, and diagrams of wolves, vertebrates, and past and present mammals. (ML)

  15. The dissociative experiences taxon is related to fantasy proneness.

    PubMed

    Giesbrecht, Timo; Merckelbach, Harald; Geraerts, Elke

    2007-09-01

    Some authors have argued that nonpathological dissociation should be distinguished from a taxon form of pathological dissociation, which is indexed by the Dissociative Experiences Scale Taxon (DES-T). We tested to what extent DES-T scores are independent from fantasy immersion and whether DES-T scores are uniquely related to trauma self-reports. To this end, subsamples of undergraduate students (n = 930), healthy adults (n = 20), schizophrenic patients (n = 22), borderline personality disordered patients (n = 20), patients with mood disorder without psychosis (n = 19), and women with a history of childhood sexual abuse (n = 55) completed the Dissociative Experiences Scale and a measure of fantasy immersion. DES-T scores were related to absorption and fantasy immersion to a lesser extent than the original DES. However, the fact that nontrivial percentages within all groups, except for the healthy adults, were classified as taxon members casts doubts on the assumption that DES-T is a reliable index of pathological dissociation. Also, we found that the DES-T was not exclusively related to reports of childhood sexual abuse.

  16. Anterior commissure versus corpus callosum: A quantitative comparison across mammals.

    PubMed

    Ashwell, Ken W S

    2016-04-01

    Mammals rely on two major pathways to transfer information between the two hemispheres of the brain: the anterior commissure and the corpus callosum. Metatheria and monotremes rely exclusively on the anterior commissure for interhemispheric transfer between the isocortices and olfactory allocortices of each side, whereas Eutheria use a combination of the anterior commissure and an additional pathway exclusive to Eutheria, the corpus callosum. Midline cross-sectional area of the anterior commissure and corpus callosum were measured in a range of mammals from all three infraclasses and plotted against brain volume to determine how midline anterior commissure area and its size relative to the corpus callosum vary with brain size and taxon. In Metatheria, the square root of anterior commissure area rises in almost direct proportion with the cube root of brain volume (i.e. the ratio of the two is relatively constant), whereas among Eutheria the ratio of the square root of anterior commissure area to the cube root of brain volume declines slightly with increasing brain size. The total of isocortical and olfactory allocortical commissure area rises more rapidly with increasing brain volume among Eutheria than among Metatheria. This means that the midline isocortical and olfactory allocortical commissural area of metatherians with large brains (about 70 ml) is only about 50% of that among eutherians with similarly sized brains. On the other hand, isocortical and olfactory allocortical commissural area is similar in Metatheria and Eutheria at brain volumes around 1 ml. Among the Eutheria, some groups make less use of the anterior commissure pathway than do others: soricomorphs, rodents and cetaceans have smaller anterior commissures for their brain size than do afrosoricids, erinaceomorphs and proboscideans. The findings suggest that use of the anterior commissural route for isocortical commissural connections may have placed limitations on interhemispheric transfer of

  17. [Jaws of primitive mammals].

    PubMed

    Tsubamoto, Takehisa

    2005-06-01

    Some of main osteological differences between mammals and reptiles are seen in the number of bones that constitute lower jaw and in jaw articulation. A lower jaw of mammals consists of only one bone, while in reptiles it consists of several bones (e.g., four to six in lizards and five in crocodiles). The jaw articulation in mammals is performed by squamosal of the skull and the mandible ( = dentary), while in reptiles it is done by quadrate of the skull and articular of the lower jaw. When mammals first appeared about 200 million years ago in the Mesozoic Era, the jaws of primitive mammals were morphologically intermediate between those of reptiles and typical mammals. Here, I briefly introduce the evolution of lower jaw morphology from the reptilian one to the mammalian one, showing lower jaw features of some mammal-like reptiles and primitive mammals.

  18. Why do phylogenomic data sets yield conflicting trees? Data type influences the avian tree of life more than taxon sampling.

    PubMed

    Reddy, Sushma; Kimball, Rebecca T; Pandey, Akanksha; Hosner, Peter A; Braun, Michael J; Hackett, Shannon J; Han, Kin-Lan; Harshman, John; Huddleston, Christopher J; Kingston, Sarah; Marks, Ben D; Miglia, Kathleen J; Moore, William S; Sheldon, Frederick H; Witt, Christopher C; Yuri, Tamaki; Braun, Edward L

    2017-03-27

    Phylogenomics, the use of large-scale data matrices in phylogenetic analyses, has been viewed as the ultimate solution to the problem of resolving difficult nodes in the tree of life. However, it has become clear that analyses of these large genomic datasets can also result in conflicting estimates of phylogeny. Here we use the early divergences in Neoaves, the largest clade of extant birds, as a 'model system' to understand the basis for incongruence among phylogenomic trees. We were motivated by the observation that trees from two recent avian phylogenomic studies exhibit conflicts. Those studies used different strategies: 1) collecting many characters [∼42 mega base pairs (Mbp) of sequence data] from 48 birds, sometimes including only one taxon for each major clade; and 2) collecting fewer characters (∼0.4 Mbp) from 198 birds, selected to subdivide long branches. However, the studies also used different data types: the taxon-poor data matrix comprised 68% non-coding sequences whereas coding exons dominated the taxon-rich data matrix. This difference raises the question of whether the primary reason for incongruence is the number of sites, the number of taxa, or the data type. To test among these alternative hypotheses we assembled a novel, large-scale data matrix comprising 90% non-coding sequences from 235 bird species. Although increased taxon sampling appeared to have a positive impact on phylogenetic analyses the most important variable was data type. Indeed, by analyzing different subsets of the taxa in our data matrix we found that increased taxon sampling actually resulted in increased congruence with the tree from the previous taxon-poor study (which had a majority of non-coding data) instead of the taxon-rich study (which largely used coding data). We suggest that the observed differences in the estimates of topology for these studies reflect data-type effects due to violations of the models used in phylogenetic analyses, some of which may be

  19. Developing terrestrial, multi-taxon indices of biological integrity: An example from coastal sage scrub

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Diffendorfer, J.E.; Fleming, G.M.; Duggan, J.M.; Chapman, R.E.; Rahn, M.E.; Mitrovich, M.J.; Fisher, R.N.

    2007-01-01

    We screened 351 species or genera for their response to disturbance in coastal sage scrub (CSS) to develop a 15-metric, 5-taxon Index of Biological Integrity (IBI). We collected data on ants, birds, herpetofauna, small mammals, and plants for two years on 46 sites established across a gradient of disturbance in three reserves. The gradient spanned relatively intact CSS with thick stands of shrubs, to former CSS stands type-converted to exotic grasses. ANOVAs and clustering analyses indicated the IBI could distinguish four levels of disturbance in CSS. General measures of community structure, such as richness, did not show changes across the gradient for most taxa, and responses of taxa across the gradient were varied and rarely correlated. However, turnover in species or genera across the gradient was common across all taxa as shrub-obligate life forms were replaced by those favoring grassy or disturbed habitats. Our data indicate index-based approaches based on data collected across disturbance gradients may outperform more traditional community level metrics when responses to anthropogenic influences are complex and vary across species. ?? 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Protection of Marine Mammals.

    PubMed

    Knoll, Michaela; Ciaccia, Ettore; Dekeling, René; Kvadsheim, Petter; Liddell, Kate; Gunnarsson, Stig-Lennart; Ludwig, Stefan; Nissen, Ivor; Lorenzen, Dirk; Kreimeyer, Roman; Pavan, Gianni; Meneghetti, Nello; Nordlund, Nina; Benders, Frank; van der Zwan, Timo; van Zon, Tim; Fraser, Leanne; Johansson, Torbjörn; Garmelius, Martin

    2016-01-01

    Within the European Defense Agency (EDA), the Protection of Marine Mammals (PoMM) project, a comprehensive common marine mammal database essential for risk mitigation tools, was established. The database, built on an extensive dataset collection with the focus on areas of operational interest for European navies, consists of annual and seasonal distribution and density maps, random and systematic sightings, an encyclopedia providing knowledge on the characteristics of 126 marine mammal species, data on marine mammal protection areas, and audio information including numerous examples of various vocalizations. Special investigations on marine mammal acoustics were carried out to improve the detection and classification capabilities.

  1. Lagenidium giganteum pathogenicity in mammals.

    PubMed

    Vilela, Raquel; Taylor, John W; Walker, Edward D; Mendoza, Leonel

    2015-02-01

    Infections of mammals by species in the phylum Oomycota taxonomically and molecularly similar to known Lagenidium giganteum strains have increased. During 2013-2014, we conducted a phylogenetic study of 21 mammalian Lagenidium isolates; we found that 11 cannot be differentiated from L. giganteum strains that the US Environmental Protection Agency approved for biological control of mosquitoes; these strains were later unregistered and are no longer available. L. giganteum strains pathogenic to mammals formed a strongly supported clade with the biological control isolates, and both types experimentally infected mosquito larvae. However, the strains from mammals grew well at 25°C and 37°C, whereas the biological control strains developed normally at 25°C but poorly at higher temperatures. The emergence of heat-tolerant strains of L. giganteum pathogenic to lower animals and humans is of environmental and public health concern.

  2. A new symmetrodont mammal from China and its implications for mammalian evolution.

    PubMed

    Hu, Y; Wang, Y; Luo, Z; Li, C

    1997-11-13

    A new symmetrodont mammal has been discovered in the Mesozoic era (Late Jurassic or Early Cretaceous period) of Liaoning Province, China. Archaic therian mammals, including symmetrodonts, are extinct relatives of the living marsupial and placental therians. However, these archaic therians have been mostly documented by fragmentary fossils. This newfossil taxon, represented by a nearly complete postcranial skeleton and a partial skull with dentition, is the best-preserved symmetrodont mammal yet discovered. It provides a new insight into the relationships of the major lineages of mammals and the evolution of the mammalian skeleton. Our analysis suggests that this new taxon represents a part of the early therian radiation before the divergence of living marsupials and placentals; that therians and multituberculates are more closely related to each other than either group is to other mammalian lineages; that archaic therians lacked the more parasagittal posture of the forelimb of most living therian mammals; and that archaic therians, such as symmetrodonts, retained the primitive feature of a finger-like promontorium (possibly with a straight cochlea) of the non-therian mammals. The fully coiled cochlea evolved later in more derived therian mammals, and is therefore convergent to the partially coiled cochlea of monotremes.

  3. A Standardized Reference Data Set for Vertebrate Taxon Name Resolution.

    PubMed

    Zermoglio, Paula F; Guralnick, Robert P; Wieczorek, John R

    2016-01-01

    Taxonomic names associated with digitized biocollections labels have flooded into repositories such as GBIF, iDigBio and VertNet. The names on these labels are often misspelled, out of date, or present other problems, as they were often captured only once during accessioning of specimens, or have a history of label changes without clear provenance. Before records are reliably usable in research, it is critical that these issues be addressed. However, still missing is an assessment of the scope of the problem, the effort needed to solve it, and a way to improve effectiveness of tools developed to aid the process. We present a carefully human-vetted analysis of 1000 verbatim scientific names taken at random from those published via the data aggregator VertNet, providing the first rigorously reviewed, reference validation data set. In addition to characterizing formatting problems, human vetting focused on detecting misspelling, synonymy, and the incorrect use of Darwin Core. Our results reveal a sobering view of the challenge ahead, as less than 47% of name strings were found to be currently valid. More optimistically, nearly 97% of name combinations could be resolved to a currently valid name, suggesting that computer-aided approaches may provide feasible means to improve digitized content. Finally, we associated names back to biocollections records and fit logistic models to test potential drivers of issues. A set of candidate variables (geographic region, year collected, higher-level clade, and the institutional digitally accessible data volume) and their 2-way interactions all predict the probability of records having taxon name issues, based on model selection approaches. We strongly encourage further experiments to use this reference data set as a means to compare automated or computer-aided taxon name tools for their ability to resolve and improve the existing wealth of legacy data.

  4. Automatic Classification of a Taxon-Rich Community Recorded in the Wild

    PubMed Central

    Potamitis, Ilyas

    2014-01-01

    There is a rich literature on automatic species identification of a specific target taxon as regards various vocalizing animals. Research usually is restricted to specific species – in most cases a single one. It is only very recently that the number of monitored species has started to increase for certain habitats involving birds. Automatic acoustic monitoring has not yet been proven to be generic enough to scale to other taxa and habitats than the ones described in the original research. Although attracting much attention, the acoustic monitoring procedure is neither well established yet nor universally adopted as a biodiversity monitoring tool. Recently, the multi-instance multi-label framework on bird vocalizations has been introduced to face the obstacle of simultaneously vocalizing birds of different species. We build on this framework to integrate novel, image-based heterogeneous features designed to capture different aspects of the spectrum. We applied our approach to a taxon-rich habitat that included 78 birds, 8 insect species and 1 amphibian. This dataset constituted the Multi-label Bird Species Classification Challenge-NIPS 2013 where the proposed approach achieved an average accuracy of 91.25% on unseen data. PMID:24826989

  5. Health risks for marine mammal workers.

    PubMed

    Hunt, Tania D; Ziccardi, Michael H; Gulland, Frances M D; Yochem, Pamela K; Hird, David W; Rowles, Teresa; Mazet, Jonna A K

    2008-08-19

    Marine mammals can be infected with zoonotic pathogens and show clinical signs of disease, or be asymptomatic carriers of such disease agents. While isolated cases of human disease from contact with marine mammals have been reported, no evaluation of the risks associated with marine mammal work has been attempted. Therefore, we designed a survey to estimate the risk of work-related injuries and illnesses in marine mammal workers and volunteers. The 17-question survey asked respondents to describe their contact with marine mammals, injuries sustained, and/or illnesses acquired during their period of marine mammal exposure. Most respondents, 88% (423/483), were researchers and rehabilitators. Of all respondents, 50% (243/483) reported suffering an injury caused by a marine mammal, and 23% (110/483) reported having a skin rash or reaction. Marine mammal work-related illnesses commonly reported included: 'seal finger' (Mycoplasma spp. or Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae), conjunctivitis, viral dermatitis, bacterial dermatitis, and non-specific contact dermatitis. Although specific diagnoses could not be confirmed by a physician through this study, severe illnesses were reported and included tuberculosis, leptospirosis, brucellosis, and serious sequelae to seal finger. Risk factors associated with increased odds of injury and illness included prolonged and frequent exposure to marine mammals; direct contact with live marine mammals; and contact with tissue, blood, and excretions. Diagnosis of zoonotic disease was often aided by veterinarians; therefore, workers at risk should be encouraged to consult with a marine mammal veterinarian as well as a physician, especially if obtaining a definitive diagnosis for an illness becomes problematic.

  6. Mammals in Our Lives.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Naturescope, 1986

    1986-01-01

    Examines how humans have treated mammals throughout history. Identifies both the problems facing animals and the corrective efforts that are currently underway. Student activities include stories, games, a scavenger hunt, a mural, a puzzle, and a survey focusing on mammals. (ML)

  7. Allometry in dinosaurs and mammals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Scott

    2015-03-01

    The proportions of the leg bones change as the size of an animal becomes larger since the mass of the animal increases at a faster rate than the cross-sectional area of its leg bones. For the case of elastic similarity (in which the longitudinal stress in the legs remains constant in animals of all sizes), the diameter d and length L of the femur should be related as d = A L3/2. For geometric similarity (in which all dimensions are scaled by the same factor), d = A L. For animals with femora longer than 20 cm, we find the power law relationship to be d = A Lb with b = 1.13 +/- 0.06 for extant mammals (the largest mammal being Loxodonta africana with a 1.00-m-long femur) and b = 1.18 +/- 0.02 for dinosaurs (the largest dinosaur being Brachiosaurus brancai with a 2.03-m-long femur). These data show that extinct dinosaurs and extant animals scale in the same basic manner. The large sauropods (with femora twice as long as found in elephants) scale in a manner consistent with extrapolation of the scaling shown by extant mammals. These results argue that extinct dinosaurs moved in a manner very similar to extant mammals.

  8. Two issues in archaeological phylogenetics: taxon construction and outgroup selection.

    PubMed

    O'Brien, Michael J; Lyman, R Lee; Saab, Youssef; Saab, Elias; Darwent, John; Glover, Daniel S

    2002-03-21

    Cladistics is widely used in biology and paleobiology to construct phylogenetic hypotheses, but rarely has it been applied outside those disciplines. There is, however, no reason to suppose that cladistics is not applicable to anything that evolves by cladogenesis and produces a nested hierarchy of taxa. This includes cultural phenomena such as languages and tools recovered from archaeological contexts. Two methodological issues assume primacy in attempts to extend cladistics to archaeological materials: the construction of analytical taxa and the selection of appropriate outgroups. In biology the species is the primary taxonomic unit used, irrespective of the debates that have arisen in phylogenetic theory over the nature of species. Also in biology the phylogenetic history of a group of taxa usually is well enough known that an appropriate taxon can be selected as an outgroup. No analytical unit parallel to the species exists in archaeology, and thus taxa have to be constructed specifically for phylogenetic analysis. One method of constructing taxa is paradigmatic classification, which defines classes (taxa) on the basis of co-occurring, unweighted character states. Once classes have been created, a form of occurrence seriation-an archaeological method based on the theory of cultural transmission and heritability-offers an objective basis for selecting an outgroup.

  9. 7 CFR 360.501 - Petitions to remove a taxon from the noxious weed lists.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2014-01-01 2014-01-01 false Petitions to remove a taxon from the noxious weed...) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE NOXIOUS WEED REGULATIONS § 360.501 Petitions to remove a taxon from the noxious weed lists. A person may petition the Administrator to remove...

  10. 7 CFR 360.501 - Petitions to remove a taxon from the noxious weed lists.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2013-01-01 2013-01-01 false Petitions to remove a taxon from the noxious weed...) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE NOXIOUS WEED REGULATIONS § 360.501 Petitions to remove a taxon from the noxious weed lists. A person may petition the Administrator to remove...

  11. 7 CFR 360.501 - Petitions to remove a taxon from the noxious weed lists.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 5 2012-01-01 2012-01-01 false Petitions to remove a taxon from the noxious weed...) ANIMAL AND PLANT HEALTH INSPECTION SERVICE, DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE NOXIOUS WEED REGULATIONS § 360.501 Petitions to remove a taxon from the noxious weed lists. A person may petition the Administrator to remove...

  12. Ecotoxicology of wild mammals

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Rattner, B.A.; Shore, R.F.

    2000-01-01

    An international group of 32 scientists has critically reviewed the scientific literature on exposure and effects of environmental contaminants in wild mammals. Although the absolute number of toxicological studies in domesticated and wild mammals eclipses that for birds, a detailed examination of scientific publications and databases reveal that information for 'wild' birds is actually greater than that for 'wild' mammals. Of the various taxa of mammals, ecotoxicological data is most noticeably lacking for marsupials and monotremes. In contrast, rodents (comprising 43% of all mammal species) have been studied extensively, despite evidence of their tolerance to some organochlorine compounds, rodenticides, and even radionuclides. Mammalian species at greatest risk of exposure include those that consume a high percentage of their body weight on a daily basis (e.g., shrews, moles and bats). Aquatic mammals tend to bioaccumulate tremendous burdens of lipophilic contaminants, although storage in their fat depots may actually limit toxicity. Carnivores appear to be more sensitive to adverse effects of environmental contaminants than herbivores. Remarkably few of the thousands of compounds manufactured worldwide have been toxicologically evaluated in wild mammals, and concentrations of even fewer have been monitored in tissues. Overarching research needs include: development of new exposure/effects models and better methods for estimation of species sensitivities; generation of comparative data on contaminant bioavailability, sublethal responses and detoxication mechanisms; enhanced understanding of pesticide, industrial contaminant and metal interactions; identification of endocrine disruptive contaminants and their overall ecological significance; and finally, estimating the relative contribution of environmental contamination as a factor affecting wild mammal populations.

  13. Do Bird Friendly® Coffee Criteria Benefit Mammals? Assessment of Mammal Diversity in Chiapas, Mexico.

    PubMed

    Caudill, S Amanda; Rice, Robert A

    2016-01-01

    Biodiversity-friendly coffee certifications offer a viable way to protect wildlife habitat while providing a financial incentive to farmers. Most studies related to these certifications focus on avian habitat requirements and it is not known whether these standards also apply to other wildlife, such as mammals, that inhabit the coffee landscapes. We assessed the non-volant mammalian fauna and their associated habitat requirements in 23 sites representing forest, Bird Friendly® shade, conventional shade, and sun coffee habitats. We used Sherman trap-grids to measure small mammal abundance and richness, while camera traps were set for medium-sized and large mammals. We detected 17 species of mammals, representing 11 families. This preliminary study indicates that coffee farms in this region provide an important refuge for mammalian wildlife. Mammal species density ranked significantly higher in Bird Friendly® coffee sites than other coffee habitats, although there was no significant difference for species richness (using Chao2 estimator) among the habitat types. No significant difference was found in small mammal abundance among the habitat types. We found a higher species density of medium and large mammals in sites with larger, more mature shade trees associated with, but not required by Bird Friendly® certification standards. However, lower strata vegetation (5 cm to 1 m tall), the only vegetation parameter found to increase abundance and density for small mammals, is not specified in the Bird Friendly® standards. Our findings suggest that although the standards devised for avian habitat do benefit mammals, further study is needed on the requirements specific for mammals that could be included to enhance the coffee habitat for mammals that inhabit these coffee landscapes.

  14. Do Bird Friendly® Coffee Criteria Benefit Mammals? Assessment of Mammal Diversity in Chiapas, Mexico

    PubMed Central

    Caudill, S. Amanda; Rice, Robert A.

    2016-01-01

    Biodiversity-friendly coffee certifications offer a viable way to protect wildlife habitat while providing a financial incentive to farmers. Most studies related to these certifications focus on avian habitat requirements and it is not known whether these standards also apply to other wildlife, such as mammals, that inhabit the coffee landscapes. We assessed the non-volant mammalian fauna and their associated habitat requirements in 23 sites representing forest, Bird Friendly® shade, conventional shade, and sun coffee habitats. We used Sherman trap-grids to measure small mammal abundance and richness, while camera traps were set for medium-sized and large mammals. We detected 17 species of mammals, representing 11 families. This preliminary study indicates that coffee farms in this region provide an important refuge for mammalian wildlife. Mammal species density ranked significantly higher in Bird Friendly® coffee sites than other coffee habitats, although there was no significant difference for species richness (using Chao2 estimator) among the habitat types. No significant difference was found in small mammal abundance among the habitat types. We found a higher species density of medium and large mammals in sites with larger, more mature shade trees associated with, but not required by Bird Friendly® certification standards. However, lower strata vegetation (5 cm to 1 m tall), the only vegetation parameter found to increase abundance and density for small mammals, is not specified in the Bird Friendly® standards. Our findings suggest that although the standards devised for avian habitat do benefit mammals, further study is needed on the requirements specific for mammals that could be included to enhance the coffee habitat for mammals that inhabit these coffee landscapes. PMID:27880773

  15. Pheromone reception in mammals.

    PubMed

    Bigiani, A; Mucignat-Caretta, C; Montani, G; Tirindelli, R

    2005-01-01

    Pheromonal communication is the most convenient way to transfer information regarding gender and social status in animals of the same species with the holistic goal of sustaining reproduction. This type of information exchange is based on pheromones, molecules often chemically unrelated, that are contained in body fluids like urine, sweat, specialized exocrine glands, and mucous secretions of genitals. So profound is the relevance of pheromones over the evolutionary process that a specific peripheral organ devoted to their recognition, namely the vomeronasal organ of Jacobson, and a related central pathway arose in most vertebrate species. Although the vomeronasal system is well developed in reptiles and amphibians, most mammals strongly rely on pheromonal communication. Humans use pheromones too; evidence on the existence of a specialized organ for their detection, however, is very elusive indeed. In the present review, we will focus our attention on the behavioral, physiological, and molecular aspects of pheromone detection in mammals. We will discuss the responses to pheromonal stimulation in different animal species, emphasizing the complicacy of this type of communication. In the light of the most recent results, we will also discuss the complex organization of the transduction molecules that underlie pheromone detection and signal transmission from vomeronasal neurons to the higher centers of the brain. Communication is a primary feature of living organisms, allowing the coordination of different behavioral paradigms among individuals. Communication has evolved through a variety of different strategies, and each species refined its own preferred communication medium. From a phylogenetic point of view, the most widespread and ancient way of communication is through chemical signals named pheromones: it occurs in all taxa, from prokaryotes to eukaryotes. The release of specific pheromones into the environment is a sensitive and definite way to send messages to

  16. Differences in the umbrella effects of African amphibians and mammals based on two estimators of the area of occupancy.

    PubMed

    Rondinini, Carlo; Boitani, Luigi

    2006-02-01

    Conservation organizations are collecting large-scale data regarding distribution and threats to vertebrate taxa. These data sets will enable planners to systematically identify large-scale conservation priorities; however, they will cover only a tiny proportion of living organisms. Therefore, it is essential to investigate to what extent the areas selected for conservation actions can provide protection for other species. We analyzed the umbrella effect between amphibians and mammals across mainland Africa. We built habitat suitability models within the geographic ranges of 1654 species, based on data collected in the framework of the World Conservation Union (IUCN) Global Amphibian Assessment and IUCN Global Mammal Assessment. We applied systematic reserve selection algorithms to two sets of estimators of the area of occupancy of amphibians and mammals (geographic ranges and estimated suitable areas) and thus selected four reserve systems. We then quantified the protection that each of the four systems provided for amphibians and mammals. Reserves selected for amphibians and mammals were comparable in area, with the former concentrated in the Afrotropical region and the latter more evenly dispersed. Mammal reserves left fewer gaps in species coverage among amphibians than the reverse, but amphibian reserves included a larger proportion of each mammal's area of occupancy than the reverse. For both taxa, setting reserves to include estimated suitable areas instead of ranges resulted in the clustering of reserves in the tropics. Furthermore, it efficiently protected hidden gaps (species with unsuitable portions of their range inside protected areas) in the other taxon and included a higher proportion of the area of occupancy of the other taxon. Overall, amphibians and mammals in Africa acted as an umbrella for a high proportion of species in the other taxon. Focusing on estimated suitable areas instead of ranges improved the umbrella effect of both taxa.

  17. Recovery trends in marine mammal populations.

    PubMed

    Magera, Anna M; Mills Flemming, Joanna E; Kaschner, Kristin; Christensen, Line B; Lotze, Heike K

    2013-01-01

    Marine mammals have greatly benefitted from a shift from resource exploitation towards conservation. Often lauded as symbols of conservation success, some marine mammal populations have shown remarkable recoveries after severe depletions. Others have remained at low abundance levels, continued to decline, or become extinct or extirpated. Here we provide a quantitative assessment of (1) publicly available population-level abundance data for marine mammals worldwide, (2) abundance trends and recovery status, and (3) historic population decline and recent recovery. We compiled 182 population abundance time series for 47 species and identified major data gaps. In order to compare across the largest possible set of time series with varying data quality, quantity and frequency, we considered an increase in population abundance as evidence of recovery. Using robust log-linear regression over three generations, we were able to classify abundance trends for 92 spatially non-overlapping populations as Significantly Increasing (42%), Significantly Decreasing (10%), Non-Significant Change (28%) and Unknown (20%). Our results were comparable to IUCN classifications for equivalent species. Among different groupings, pinnipeds and other marine mammals (sirenians, polar bears and otters) showed the highest proportion of recovering populations, likely benefiting from relatively fast life histories and nearshore habitats that provided visibility and protective management measures. Recovery was less frequent among cetaceans, but more common in coastal than offshore populations. For marine mammals with available historical abundance estimates (n = 47), larger historical population declines were associated with low or variable recent recoveries so far. Overall, our results show that many formerly depleted marine mammal populations are recovering. However, data-deficient populations and those with decreasing and non-significant trends require attention. In particular, increased study of

  18. Recovery Trends in Marine Mammal Populations

    PubMed Central

    Magera, Anna M.; Mills Flemming, Joanna E.; Kaschner, Kristin; Christensen, Line B.; Lotze, Heike K.

    2013-01-01

    Marine mammals have greatly benefitted from a shift from resource exploitation towards conservation. Often lauded as symbols of conservation success, some marine mammal populations have shown remarkable recoveries after severe depletions. Others have remained at low abundance levels, continued to decline, or become extinct or extirpated. Here we provide a quantitative assessment of (1) publicly available population-level abundance data for marine mammals worldwide, (2) abundance trends and recovery status, and (3) historic population decline and recent recovery. We compiled 182 population abundance time series for 47 species and identified major data gaps. In order to compare across the largest possible set of time series with varying data quality, quantity and frequency, we considered an increase in population abundance as evidence of recovery. Using robust log-linear regression over three generations, we were able to classify abundance trends for 92 spatially non-overlapping populations as Significantly Increasing (42%), Significantly Decreasing (10%), Non-Significant Change (28%) and Unknown (20%). Our results were comparable to IUCN classifications for equivalent species. Among different groupings, pinnipeds and other marine mammals (sirenians, polar bears and otters) showed the highest proportion of recovering populations, likely benefiting from relatively fast life histories and nearshore habitats that provided visibility and protective management measures. Recovery was less frequent among cetaceans, but more common in coastal than offshore populations. For marine mammals with available historical abundance estimates (n = 47), larger historical population declines were associated with low or variable recent recoveries so far. Overall, our results show that many formerly depleted marine mammal populations are recovering. However, data-deficient populations and those with decreasing and non-significant trends require attention. In particular, increased

  19. Global Patterns of Zoonotic Disease in Mammals.

    PubMed

    Han, Barbara A; Kramer, Andrew M; Drake, John M

    2016-07-01

    As the frequency and prevalence of zoonotic diseases increase worldwide, investigating how mammal host distributions determine patterns of human disease and predicting which regions are at greatest risk for future zoonotic disease emergence are two goals which both require better understanding of the current distributions of zoonotic hosts and pathogens. We review here the existing data about mammalian host species, comparing and contrasting these patterns against global maps of zoonotic hosts from all 27 orders of terrestrial mammals. We discuss the zoonotic potential of host species from the top six most species-rich mammal groups, and review the literature to identify analytical and conceptual gaps that must be addressed to improve our ability to generate testable predictions about zoonotic diseases originating from wild mammals.

  20. Ecotoxicology of Wild Mammals

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    2001-01-01

    An international group of 32 scientists has critically reviewed the scientific literature on exposure and effects of environmental contaminants in wild mammals. The underlying theme of this text is encompassed by the following four questions: What exactly do we know about environmental contaminants in mammals? What are the commonalities and differences between mammal orders/species in the effects that contaminants have? How and to what degree of accuracy can we predict the adverse effects of environmental contaminants on mammalian wildlife? How significant are contaminant insults compared with other density-independent and -dependent factors such as habitat loss, climatic factors and disease? The book is organized three topical sections including introductory chapters that provide a background on environmental contaminants and the mammalian orders, eight taxonomic chapters discussing all aspects of the exposure to and effects of contaminants in mammalian orders, and four thematic chapters that review and discuss generic issues including biomarkers, prediction and extrapolation of exposure and effects, hazard and risk assessment, and the relative significance of contaminants on mammals compared with other commonly encountered stressors. A final a summary chapter identifies phylogenetic trends, critical data gaps, and overarching research needs. Although the absolute number of toxicological studies in domesticated and wild mammals eclipses that wildlife species, a detailed examination of our knowledge base reveals that information for 'wild' birds is actually greater than that for 'wild' mammals. Of the various mammalian taxa, ecotoxicological data is most noticeably lacking for marsupials and monotremes. In contrast, rodents (comprising 43% of all mammal species) have been studied extensively, despite evidence of their tolerance to some organochlorine compounds, rodenticides, and even radionuclides. Mammalian species at greatest risk of exposure include those that

  1. Osmoregulation in marine mammals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ortiz, R. M.

    2001-01-01

    Osmoregulation in marine mammals has been investigated for over a century; however, a review of recent advances in our understanding of water and electrolyte balance and of renal function in marine mammals is warranted. The following topics are discussed: (i) kidney structure and urine concentrating ability, (ii) sources of water, (iii) the effects of feeding, fasting and diving, (iv) the renal responses to infusions of varying salinity and (v) hormonal regulation. The kidneys of pinnipeds and cetaceans are reniculate in structure, unlike those of terrestrial mammals (except bears), but this difference does not confer any greater concentrating ability. Pinnipeds, cetaceans, manatees and sea otters can concentrate their urine above the concentration of sea water, but only pinnipeds and otters have been shown to produce urine concentrations of Na+ and Cl- that are similar to those in sea water. This could afford them the capacity to drink sea water and not lose fresh water. However, with few exceptions, drinking is not a common behavior in pinnipeds and cetaceans. Water balance is maintained in these animals via metabolic and dietary water, while incidental ingestion and dietary salt may help maintain electrolyte homeostasis. Unlike most other aquatic mammals, sea otters commonly drink sea water and manatees frequently drink fresh water. Among the various taxonomic groups of marine mammals, the sensitivity of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system appears to be influenced by the availability of Na+. The antidiuretic role of vasopressin remains inconclusive in marine mammals, while the natriuretic function of atrial natriuretic peptide has yet to be examined. Ideas on the direction of future studies are presented.

  2. Venomous mammals: a review.

    PubMed

    Ligabue-Braun, Rodrigo; Verli, Hugo; Carlini, Célia Regina

    2012-06-01

    The occurrence of venom in mammals has long been considered of minor importance, but recent fossil discoveries and advances in experimental techniques have cast new light into this subject. Mammalian venoms form a heterogeneous group having different compositions and modes of action and are present in three classes of mammals, Insectivora, Monotremata, and Chiroptera. A fourth order, Primates, is proposed to have venomous representatives. In this review we highlight recent advances in the field while summarizing biochemical characteristics of these secretions and their effects upon humans and other animals. Historical aspects of venom discovery and evolutionary hypothesis regarding their origin are also discussed.

  3. Molecular phylogeny of living xenarthrans and the impact of character and taxon sampling on the placental tree rooting.

    PubMed

    Delsuc, Frédéric; Scally, Mark; Madsen, Ole; Stanhope, Michael J; de Jong, Wilfried W; Catzeflis, François M; Springer, Mark S; Douzery, Emmanuel J P

    2002-10-01

    Extant xenarthrans (armadillos, anteaters and sloths) are among the most derived placental mammals ever evolved. South America was the cradle of their evolutionary history. During the Tertiary, xenarthrans experienced an extraordinary radiation, whereas South America remained isolated from other continents. The 13 living genera are relics of this earlier diversification and represent one of the four major clades of placental mammals. Sequences of the three independent protein-coding nuclear markers alpha2B adrenergic receptor (ADRA2B), breast cancer susceptibility (BRCA1), and von Willebrand Factor (VWF) were determined for 12 of the 13 living xenarthran genera. Comparative evolutionary dynamics of these nuclear exons using a likelihood framework revealed contrasting patterns of molecular evolution. All codon positions of BRCA1 were shown to evolve in a strikingly similar manner, and third codon positions appeared less saturated within placentals than those of ADRA2B and VWF. Maximum likelihood and Bayesian phylogenetic analyses of a 47 placental taxa data set rooted by three marsupial outgroups resolved the phylogeny of Xenarthra with some evidence for two radiation events in armadillos and provided a strongly supported picture of placental interordinal relationships. This topology was fully compatible with recent studies, dividing placentals into the Southern Hemisphere clades Afrotheria and Xenarthra and a monophyletic Northern Hemisphere clade (Boreoeutheria) composed of Laurasiatheria and Euarchontoglires. Partitioned likelihood statistical tests of the position of the root, under different character partition schemes, identified three almost equally likely hypotheses for early placental divergences: a basal Afrotheria, an Afrotheria + Xenarthra clade, or a basal Xenarthra (Epitheria hypothesis). We took advantage of the extensive sampling realized within Xenarthra to assess its impact on the location of the root on the placental tree. By resampling taxa

  4. Morbilliviruses in marine mammals.

    PubMed

    Hall, A J

    1995-01-01

    Two of the three recently discovered aquatic morbilliviruses have been responsible for mass mortalities among marine mammals; both affect more than one host species, but susceptibility to infection varies considerably between species. Apparent differences between the dynamics of aquatic morbilliviruses and their terrestrial counterparts may be a consequence of high levels of interspecific transmission.

  5. Mammals in Winter.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wapner, Suzanne

    1985-01-01

    Mammals that tolerate the winter cold and stay active all year exploit the harsh northern climate to their advantage. By simple experiments and observation you can better understand their adaptations which include furry bodies, snowshoe feet, extra blubber, light coloration, and strategically distributed food caches. (JHZ)

  6. 76 FR 72680 - Marine Mammals

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-11-25

    ... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XA078 Marine Mammals AGENCY: National Marine.... Environmental Research and Services, Fairbanks, AK, to conduct research on marine mammals in Alaska. ADDRESSES... authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), the...

  7. 77 FR 2512 - Marine Mammals

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-01-18

    ... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XA905 Marine Mammals AGENCY: National Marine...; receipt of application. SUMMARY: Notice is hereby given that Dorian Houser, Ph.D., National Marine Mammal... under the authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (MMPA; 16 U.S.C. 1361 et...

  8. 75 FR 77616 - Marine Mammals

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-12-13

    ... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XP18 Marine Mammals AGENCY: National Marine... Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), the regulations governing the taking and importing of marine mammals (50 CFR part 216), the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as...

  9. 76 FR 76949 - Marine Mammals

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-12-09

    ... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XR52 Marine Mammals AGENCY: National Marine... Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), the regulations governing the taking and importing of marine mammals (50 CFR part 216), the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as...

  10. 77 FR 9627 - Marine Mammals

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-02-17

    ... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XB005 Marine Mammals AGENCY: National Marine.../2\\ W. 4th Avenue, Olympia, WA 98501, has applied in due form for a permit to take marine mammals in... subject permit is requested under the authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as...

  11. 75 FR 68605 - Marine Mammals

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-11-08

    ... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XX23 Marine Mammals AGENCY: National Marine... Marine Science Center, Newport, OR has been issued a permit to conduct research on marine mammals... authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, as amended (16 U.S.C. 1361 et seq.), the...

  12. Physiological Monitoring in Diving Mammals

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-09-30

    and Neurobiology, 2009. 165(28-39). 4. Fahlman, A., et al., Deep diving mammals : Dive behavior and circulatory adjustments contribute to bends...1 DISTRIBUTION STATEMENT A: Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. Physiological Monitoring in Diving Mammals Peter L...NGO) scrutiny of the complex relationship between ocean noise, bubble injury and marine mammal strandings (http://www.awionline.org/oceans/Noise

  13. The genus Nonomuraea: A review of a rare actinomycete taxon for novel metabolites.

    PubMed

    Sungthong, Rungroch; Nakaew, Nareeluk

    2015-05-01

    The genus Nonomuraea is a rare actinomycete taxon with a long taxonomic history, while its generic description was recently emended. The genus is less known among the rare actinomycete genera as its taxonomic position was revised several times. It can be found in diverse ecological niches, while most of its member species were isolated from soil samples. However, new trends to discover the genus in other habitats are increasing. Generic abundance of the genus was found to be dependent on geographical changes. Novel sources together with selective and invented isolation techniques might increase a chance to explore the genus and its novel candidates. Interestingly, some of its members have been revealed as a valuable source of novel metabolites for medical and industrial purposes. Broad-range of potent bioactive compounds including antimicrobial, anticancer, and antipsychotic substances, broad-spectrum antibiotics and biocatalysts can be synthesized by the genus. In order to investigate biosynthetic pathways of the bioactive compounds and self-resistant mechanisms to these compounds, the links from genes to metabolites have yet been needed for further discovery and biotechnological development of the genus Nonomuraea.

  14. The changing fates of the world's mammals

    PubMed Central

    Hoffmann, Michael; Belant, Jerrold L.; Chanson, Janice S.; Cox, Neil A.; Lamoreux, John; Rodrigues, Ana S. L.; Schipper, Jan; Stuart, Simon N.

    2011-01-01

    A recent complete assessment of the conservation status of 5487 mammal species demonstrated that at least one-fifth are at risk of extinction in the wild. We retrospectively identified genuine changes in extinction risk for mammals between 1996 and 2008 to calculate changes in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List Index (RLI). Species-level trends in the conservation status of mammalian diversity reveal that extinction risk in large-bodied species is increasing, and that the rate of deterioration has been most accelerated in the Indomalayan and Australasian realms. Expanding agriculture and hunting have been the main drivers of increased extinction risk in mammals. Site-based protection and management, legislation, and captive-breeding and reintroduction programmes have led to improvements in 24 species. We contextualize these changes, and explain why both deteriorations and improvements may be under-reported. Although this study highlights where conservation actions are leading to improvements, it fails to account for instances where conservation has prevented further deteriorations in the status of the world's mammals. The continued utility of the RLI is dependent on sustained investment to ensure repeated assessments of mammals over time and to facilitate future calculations of the RLI and measurement against global targets. PMID:21844039

  15. [Control of harmful mammals].

    PubMed

    van Eerdenburg, F J; Bouw, J; Zwart, P

    1987-07-15

    In the Netherlands, several millions of injurious small mammals are killed yearly. This concerns not only mice and rats but also moles, musk-rats and several other species of rodent. At the request of the Netherlands Society for the Protection of Animals, studies were done on the methods in killing these animals, the effectiveness of these methods and the possibilities of reducing the harm done to the animals. The most important results of these investigations are reported in the present paper.

  16. Ectoparasites of African Mammals.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1976-11-30

    This study consisted of ectoparasites from approximately 100,000 African small mammals, representing probably more than 500 species of which many are...study of ectoparasites may provide information concerning interactions among animal reservoirs of disease, and (3) an understanding of ecological...parameters for ectoparasites and their hosts may enhance understanding of epidemiological patterns. Of the four major groups dealt with, considerably more

  17. A Chinese triconodont mammal and mosaic evolution of the mammalian skeleton.

    PubMed

    Ji, Q; Luo, Z X; Ji, S A; Luo, Z

    1999-03-25

    Here we describe a new triconodont mammal from the Late Jurassic/Early Cretaceous period of Liaoning, China. This new mammal is represented by the best-preserved skeleton known so far for triconodonts which form one of the earliest Mesozoic mammalian groups with high diversity. The postcranial skeleton of this new triconodont shows a mosaic of characters, including a primitive pelvic girdle and hindlimb but a very derived pectoral girdle that is closely comparable to those of derived therians. Given the basal position of this taxon in mammalian phylogeny, its derived pectoral girdle indicates that homoplasies (similarities resulting from independent evolution among unrelated lineages) are as common in the postcranial skeleton as they are in the skull and dentition in the evolution of Mesozoic mammals. Limb structures of the new triconodont indicate that it was probably a ground-dwelling animal.

  18. "Social Anxiety Disorder Carved at its Joints": evidence for the taxonicity of social anxiety disorder.

    PubMed

    Weeks, Justin W; Carleton, R Nicholas; Asmundson, Gordon J G; McCabe, Randi E; Antony, Martin M

    2010-10-01

    Previous findings suggest that social anxiety disorder may be best characterized as having a dimensional latent structure (Kollman et al., 2006; Weeks et al., 2009). We attempted to extend previous taxometric investigations of social anxiety by examining the latent structure of social anxiety disorder symptoms in a large sample comprised of social anxiety disorder patients (i.e., putative taxon members) and community residents/undergraduate respondents (i.e., putative complement class members). MAXEIG and MAMBAC were performed with indicator sets drawn from a self-report measure of social anxiety symptoms, the Social Interaction Phobia Scale (Carleton et al., 2009). MAXEIG and MAMBAC analyses, as well as comparison analyses utilizing simulated taxonic and dimensional datasets, yielded converging evidence that social anxiety disorder has a taxonic latent structure. Moreover, 100% of the confirmed social anxiety disorder patients in our overall sample were correctly assigned to the identified taxon class, providing strong support for the external validity of the identified taxon; and k-means cluster analysis results corroborated our taxometric base-rate estimates. Implications regarding the conceptualization, diagnosis, and assessment of social anxiety disorder are discussed.

  19. Post-Jurassic mammal-like reptile from the Palaeocene.

    PubMed

    Fox, R C; Youzwyshyn, G P; Krause, D W

    1992-07-16

    Mammal-like reptiles of the order Therapsida document the emergence of mammals from more primitive synapsids and are of unique zoological and palaeontological interest on that account. Therapsids, first appearing in the Early Permian, were thought to become extinct in the Middle Jurassic, soon after the Late Triassic origin of mammals. Here, however, we report the discovery of a therapsid from the late Palaeocene, 100 million years younger than the youngest previous occurrence of the order. This discovery nearly doubles the stratigraphic range of therapsids and furnishes their first record from the Cenozoic. The documenting fossils, an incomplete dentary containing three teeth, and four isolated teeth from other, conspecific individuals (Fig. 1), are from the Paskapoo Formation, at Cochrane, Alberta, Canada, from beds yielding a diverse mammalian fauna of early Tiffanian age. These specimens are catalogued in the collections of the University of Alberta Laboratory for Vertebrate Paleontology (UALVP) and provide the basis for a new taxon, as named and described below: (see text)

  20. Phylogenetic correlates of extinction risk in mammals: species in older lineages are not at greater risk.

    PubMed

    Verde Arregoitia, Luis Darcy; Blomberg, Simon P; Fisher, Diana O

    2013-08-22

    Phylogenetic information is becoming a recognized basis for evaluating conservation priorities, but associations between extinction risk and properties of a phylogeny such as diversification rates and phylogenetic lineage ages remain unclear. Limited taxon-specific analyses suggest that species in older lineages are at greater risk. We calculate quantitative properties of the mammalian phylogeny and model extinction risk as an ordinal index based on International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List categories. We test for associations between lineage age, clade size, evolutionary distinctiveness and extinction risk for 3308 species of terrestrial mammals. We show no significant global or regional associations, and three significant relationships within taxonomic groups. Extinction risk increases for evolutionarily distinctive primates and decreases with lineage age when lemurs are excluded. Lagomorph species (rabbits, hares and pikas) that have more close relatives are less threatened. We examine the relationship between net diversification rates and extinction risk for 173 genera and find no pattern. We conclude that despite being under-represented in the frequency distribution of lineage ages, species in older, slower evolving and distinct lineages are not more threatened or extinction-prone. Their extinction, however, would represent a disproportionate loss of unique evolutionary history.

  1. Multiple ecological pathways to extinction in mammals

    PubMed Central

    Davidson, Ana D.; Hamilton, Marcus J.; Boyer, Alison G.; Brown, James H.; Ceballos, Gerardo

    2009-01-01

    As human population and resource demands continue to grow, biodiversity conservation has never been more critical. About one-quarter of all mammals are in danger of extinction, and more than half of all mammal populations are in decline. A major priority for conservation science is to understand the ecological traits that predict extinction risk and the interactions among those predictors that make certain species more vulnerable than others. Here, using a new database of nearly 4,500 mammal species, we use decision-tree models to quantify the multiple interacting factors associated with extinction risk. We show that the correlates of extinction risk vary widely across mammals and that there are unique pathways to extinction for species with different lifestyles and combinations of traits. We find that risk is relative and that all kinds of mammals, across all body sizes, can be at risk depending on their specific ecologies. Our results increase the understanding of extinction processes, generate simple rules of thumb that identify species at greatest risk, and highlight the potential of decision-tree analyses to inform conservation efforts. PMID:19528635

  2. Spatial scale and cross-taxon congruence of terrestrial vertebrate and vascular plant species richness in China.

    PubMed

    Qian, Hong; Kissling, W Daniel

    2010-04-01

    In ecology and biogeography it is often recognized that the species richness of different groups of organisms is spatially congruent (and thus positively correlated). However, ecological phenomena are often scale dependent and can change with spatial scale (i.e., grain size and extent). Because species richness gradients are also correlated with environmental gradients and plant species richness is thought to influence animal species richness, the relative roles of environment and plant richness in influencing cross-taxon congruence of animal richness at different spatial scales remain poorly explored. In this study, we examine the spatial concordance in species richness among terrestrial vertebrates and vascular plants at two spatial grain sizes (local and regional) across China. We hypothesize that (H1) cross-taxon richness relationships are weaker at the local scale; (H2) climatic predictors of species richness are stronger at the regional scale; (H3) effects of habitat heterogeneity on species richness are stronger at the local scale; (H4) plant richness positively affects vertebrate richness after accounting for environmental effects; and (H5) the plant-vertebrate richness relationship is weaker at the regional scale. We found significant and positive correlations between species richness of the groups, with correlations being stronger at the regional scale than at the local scale (supporting H1). Climate has weaker effects on species richness at the regional scale than at the local scale (rejecting H2), and for vertebrates (but not for plants) effects of habitat heterogeneity are stronger at the local scale (supporting hypothesis H3). Plant richness positively affects vertebrate richness after accounting for environmental effects (supporting H4), but the effect is stronger for the two endothermic groups (mammals and birds) than for the two ectothermic groups (reptiles and amphibians). In contrast to hypothesis H5, the effect of plant richness on species

  3. Large-brained mammals live longer.

    PubMed

    González-Lagos, C; Sol, D; Reader, S M

    2010-05-01

    Many mammals have brains substantially larger than expected for their body size, but the reasons for this remain ambiguous. Enlarged brains are metabolically expensive and require elongated developmental periods, and so natural selection should have favoured their evolution only if they provide counterbalancing advantages. One possible advantage is facilitating the construction of behavioural responses to unusual, novel or complex socio-ecological challenges. This buffer effect should increase survival rates and favour a longer reproductive life, thereby compensating for the costs of delayed reproduction. Here, using a global database of 493 species, we provide evidence showing that mammals with enlarged brains (relative to their body size) live longer and have a longer reproductive lifespan. Our analysis supports and extends previous findings, accounting for the possible confounding effects of other life history traits, ecological and dietary factors, and phylogenetic autocorrelation. Thus, these findings provide support for the hypothesis that mammals counterbalance the costs of affording large brains with a longer reproductive life.

  4. Knowledge Management in Taxonomy and Biostratigraphy using TaxonConcept Software

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Klump, J.; Huber, R.; Goetz, S.

    2005-12-01

    The use of fossils to constrain age models for geological samples is not as straightforward as it might seem. Even though index fossils have been defined as biostratigraphic time markers ambiguity arises from the synonymous use of taxonomic names. Progress in our understanding of the origin of certain species have sometimes lead to substantial changes in the taxonomic classification of these organisms. TaxonConcept was created as part of the Stratigraphy.net initiative as a tool to manage taxonomic information and complex knowledge networks to help resolve taxonomic ambiguities in biostratigraphy. Its workflow is based on the principles of open nomenclature. Open nomenclature allows researchers to comment on the identification of a specimen which cannot exactly be determined and is frequently used in synonymy lists. The use of such synonymy lists in TaxonConcept allows to work with taxonomic classifications that are uncertain, or where several versions exist. Every single taxonomic entity in TaxonConcept is recorded with its relevant citations in the literature. This allows to manage information on taxonomy. The members of working groups using TaxonConcept can record their opinion on the taxonomic classification of each taxon in the framework of open nomenclature and annotate it in free text. This managed and structured collection of taxonomic opinions is an example of knowledge management. Taxonomic opinions are otherwise dispersed throughout the literature, if recorded at all, and are only available to the specialist. Assembled as a collection, they represent our knowledge on the taxonomy of a certain group of organisms. In the terminology of computer science, the semantic relationships between taxonomic terms are an ontology. Open nomenclature offers a formal framework that lends itself very well to describe the nature of the relations between taxonomic terms. The use of such synonymy lists in a taxonomic information system allows interesting search options

  5. Unraveling the sequence information in COI barcode to achieve higher taxon assignment based on Indian freshwater fishes.

    PubMed

    Chakraborty, Mohua; Ghosh, Sankar Kumar

    2015-04-01

    Efficacy of cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) DNA barcode in higher taxon assignment is still under debate in spite of several attempts, using the conventional DNA barcoding methods, to assign higher taxa. Here we try to understand whether nucleotide and amino acid sequence in COI gene carry sufficient information to assign species to their higher taxonomic rank, using 160 species of Indian freshwater fishes. Our results reveal that with increase in the taxonomic rank, sequence conservation decreases for both nucleotides and amino acids. Order level exhibits lowest conservation with 50% of the nucleotides and amino acids being conserved. Among the variable sites, 30-50% were found to carry high information content within an order, while it was 70-80% within a family and 80-99% within a genus. High information content shows sites with almost conserved sequence but varying at one or two locations, which can be due to variations at species or population level. Thus, the potential of COI gene in higher taxon assignment is revealed with validation of ample inherent signals latent in the gene.

  6. Dosage Compensation in Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Brockdorff, Neil; Turner, Bryan M.

    2015-01-01

    Many organisms show major chromosomal differences between sexes. In mammals, females have two copies of a large, gene-rich chromosome, the X, whereas males have one X and a small, gene-poor Y. The imbalance in expression of several hundred genes is lethal if not dealt with by dosage compensation. The male–female difference is addressed by silencing of genes on one female X early in development. However, both males and females now have only one active X chromosome. This is compensated by twofold up-regulation of genes on the active X. This complex system continues to provide important insights into mechanisms of epigenetic regulation. PMID:25731764

  7. The maximum rate of mammal evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Evans, Alistair R.; Jones, David; Boyer, Alison G.; Brown, James H.; Costa, Daniel P.; Ernest, S. K. Morgan; Fitzgerald, Erich M. G.; Fortelius, Mikael; Gittleman, John L.; Hamilton, Marcus J.; Harding, Larisa E.; Lintulaakso, Kari; Lyons, S. Kathleen; Okie, Jordan G.; Saarinen, Juha J.; Sibly, Richard M.; Smith, Felisa A.; Stephens, Patrick R.; Theodor, Jessica M.; Uhen, Mark D.

    2012-03-01

    How fast can a mammal evolve from the size of a mouse to the size of an elephant? Achieving such a large transformation calls for major biological reorganization. Thus, the speed at which this occurs has important implications for extensive faunal changes, including adaptive radiations and recovery from mass extinctions. To quantify the pace of large-scale evolution we developed a metric, clade maximum rate, which represents the maximum evolutionary rate of a trait within a clade. We applied this metric to body mass evolution in mammals over the last 70 million years, during which multiple large evolutionary transitions occurred in oceans and on continents and islands. Our computations suggest that it took a minimum of 1.6, 5.1, and 10 million generations for terrestrial mammal mass to increase 100-, and 1,000-, and 5,000-fold, respectively. Values for whales were down to half the length (i.e., 1.1, 3, and 5 million generations), perhaps due to the reduced mechanical constraints of living in an aquatic environment. When differences in generation time are considered, we find an exponential increase in maximum mammal body mass during the 35 million years following the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) extinction event. Our results also indicate a basic asymmetry in macroevolution: very large decreases (such as extreme insular dwarfism) can happen at more than 10 times the rate of increases. Our findings allow more rigorous comparisons of microevolutionary and macroevolutionary patterns and processes.

  8. The maximum rate of mammal evolution.

    PubMed

    Evans, Alistair R; Jones, David; Boyer, Alison G; Brown, James H; Costa, Daniel P; Ernest, S K Morgan; Fitzgerald, Erich M G; Fortelius, Mikael; Gittleman, John L; Hamilton, Marcus J; Harding, Larisa E; Lintulaakso, Kari; Lyons, S Kathleen; Okie, Jordan G; Saarinen, Juha J; Sibly, Richard M; Smith, Felisa A; Stephens, Patrick R; Theodor, Jessica M; Uhen, Mark D

    2012-03-13

    How fast can a mammal evolve from the size of a mouse to the size of an elephant? Achieving such a large transformation calls for major biological reorganization. Thus, the speed at which this occurs has important implications for extensive faunal changes, including adaptive radiations and recovery from mass extinctions. To quantify the pace of large-scale evolution we developed a metric, clade maximum rate, which represents the maximum evolutionary rate of a trait within a clade. We applied this metric to body mass evolution in mammals over the last 70 million years, during which multiple large evolutionary transitions occurred in oceans and on continents and islands. Our computations suggest that it took a minimum of 1.6, 5.1, and 10 million generations for terrestrial mammal mass to increase 100-, and 1,000-, and 5,000-fold, respectively. Values for whales were down to half the length (i.e., 1.1, 3, and 5 million generations), perhaps due to the reduced mechanical constraints of living in an aquatic environment. When differences in generation time are considered, we find an exponential increase in maximum mammal body mass during the 35 million years following the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) extinction event. Our results also indicate a basic asymmetry in macroevolution: very large decreases (such as extreme insular dwarfism) can happen at more than 10 times the rate of increases. Our findings allow more rigorous comparisons of microevolutionary and macroevolutionary patterns and processes.

  9. Heterothermy in large mammals: inevitable or implemented?

    PubMed

    Hetem, Robyn S; Maloney, Shane K; Fuller, Andrea; Mitchell, Duncan

    2016-02-01

    Advances in biologging techniques over the past 20 years have allowed for the remote and continuous measurement of body temperatures in free-living mammals. While there is an abundance of literature on heterothermy in small mammals, fewer studies have investigated the daily variability of body core temperature in larger mammals. Here we review measures of heterothermy and the factors that influence heterothermy in large mammals in their natural habitats, focussing on large mammalian herbivores. The mean 24 h body core temperatures for 17 species of large mammalian herbivores (>10 kg) decreased by ∼1.3°C for each 10-fold increase in body mass, a relationship that remained significant following phylogenetic correction. The degree of heterothermy, as measured by the 24 h amplitude of body core temperature rhythm, was independent of body mass and appeared to be driven primarily by energy and water limitations. When faced with the competing demands of osmoregulation, energy acquisition and water or energy use for thermoregulation, large mammalian herbivores appear to relax the precision of thermoregulation thereby conserving body water and energy. Such relaxation may entail a cost in that an animal moves closer to its thermal limits for performance. Maintaining homeostasis requires trade-offs between regulated systems, and homeothermy apparently is not accorded the highest priority; large mammals are able to maintain optimal homeothermy only if they are well nourished, hydrated, and not compromised energetically. We propose that the amplitude of the 24 h rhythm of body core temperature provides a useful index of any compromise experienced by a free-living large mammal and may predict the performance and fitness of an animal.

  10. The evolution of mammal body sizes: responses to Cenozoic climate change in North American mammals.

    PubMed

    Lovegrove, B G; Mowoe, M O

    2013-06-01

    Explanations for the evolution of body size in mammals have remained surprisingly elusive despite the central importance of body size in evolutionary biology. Here, we present a model which argues that the body sizes of Nearctic mammals were moulded by Cenozoic climate and vegetation changes. Following the early Eocene Climate Optimum, forests retreated and gave way to open woodland and savannah landscapes, followed later by grasslands. Many herbivores that radiated in these new landscapes underwent a switch from browsing to grazing associated with increased unguligrade cursoriality and body size, the latter driven by the energetics and constraints of cellulose digestion (fermentation). Carnivores also increased in size and digitigrade, cursorial capacity to occupy a size distribution allowing the capture of prey of the widest range of body sizes. With the emergence of larger, faster carnivores, plantigrade mammals were constrained from evolving to large body sizes and most remained smaller than 1 kg throughout the middle Cenozoic. We find no consistent support for either Cope's Rule or Bergmann's Rule in plantigrade mammals, the largest locomotor guild (n = 1186, 59% of species in the database). Some cold-specialist plantigrade mammals, such as beavers and marmots, showed dramatic increases in body mass following the Miocene Climate Optimum which may, however, be partially explained by Bergmann's rule. This study reemphasizes the necessity of considering the evolutionary history and resultant form and function of mammalian morphotypes when attempting to understand contemporary mammalian body size distributions.

  11. Psychopathy as a Taxon: Evidence That Psychopaths Are a Discrete Class.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Harris, Grant T.; And Others

    1994-01-01

    Applied taxometric analyses to construct of psychopathy (as measured by Psychopathy Checklist) and to several variables reflecting antisocial childhood, adult criminality, and criminal recidivism. Findings from 653 serious offenders assessed or treated in maximum-security institution supported existence of taxon underlying psychopathy. Childhood…

  12. Dimensionality vs Taxonicity of Schizotypy: Some New Data and Challenges Ahead

    PubMed Central

    Everett, Kirsty V.; Linscott, Richard J.

    2015-01-01

    Heterogeneity in the expression of schizotypy may arise from underlying dimensional processes or a taxonic population structure. In a 2-phase study, we tested the taxonicity of self-reported schizotypy within a general psychiatric sample (n = 109) and examined taxon validity by testing its association with clinical schizotaxia in follow-up subsamples. Taxometric analyses indicated a taxonic structure (schizotypy prevalence = 38.8%) provided the best description of the underlying population distribution. After a year, schizotypal (n = 14) and nonschizotypal (n = 14) subsamples returned for diagnosis of clinical schizotaxia by assessment of executive functioning, attention, memory, and negative symptoms. Seven patients met diagnostic criteria, all members of the schizotypy class. Schizotypy was associated with impaired attention and memory, more negative symptoms, poorer global functioning, and more extensive psychiatric histories. We reconcile inconsistencies in the literature by discussing threats to the validity of this and similar research on Meehl’s taxonomic model of schizotypy, including conceptual limitations of the lexical hypothesis and conventions of factor analysis. Scrutiny of Meehl’s model should involve disambiguation and better measurement of the schizotaxia-schizotypy phenotype. PMID:25810059

  13. Global mammal distributions, biodiversity hotspots, and conservation.

    PubMed

    Ceballos, Gerardo; Ehrlich, Paul R

    2006-12-19

    Hotspots, which have played a central role in the selection of sites for reserves, require careful rethinking. We carried out a global examination of distributions of all nonmarine mammals to determine patterns of species richness, endemism, and endangerment, and to evaluate the degree of congruence among hotspots of these three measures of diversity in mammals. We then compare congruence of hotspots in two animal groups (mammals and birds) to assess the generality of these patterns. We defined hotspots as the richest 2.5% of cells in a global equal-area grid comparable to 1 degrees latitude x 1 degrees longitude. Hotspots of species richness, "endemism," and extinction threat were noncongruent. Only 1% of cells and 16% of species were common to the three types of mammalian hotspots. Congruence increased with increases in both the geographic scope of the analysis and the percentage of cells defined as being hotspots. The within-mammal hotspot noncongruence was similar to the pattern recently found for birds. Thus, assigning global conservation priorities based on hotspots is at best a limited strategy.

  14. Communication masking in marine mammals: A review and research strategy.

    PubMed

    Erbe, Christine; Reichmuth, Colleen; Cunningham, Kane; Lucke, Klaus; Dooling, Robert

    2016-02-15

    Underwater noise, whether of natural or anthropogenic origin, has the ability to interfere with the way in which marine mammals receive acoustic signals (i.e., for communication, social interaction, foraging, navigation, etc.). This phenomenon, termed auditory masking, has been well studied in humans and terrestrial vertebrates (in particular birds), but less so in marine mammals. Anthropogenic underwater noise seems to be increasing in parts of the world's oceans and concerns about associated bioacoustic effects, including masking, are growing. In this article, we review our understanding of masking in marine mammals, summarise data on marine mammal hearing as they relate to masking (including audiograms, critical ratios, critical bandwidths, and auditory integration times), discuss masking release processes of receivers (including comodulation masking release and spatial release from masking) and anti-masking strategies of signalers (e.g. Lombard effect), and set a research framework for improved assessment of potential masking in marine mammals.

  15. Road zone effects in small-mammal communities

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bissonette, J.A.; Rosa, S.A.

    2009-01-01

    Our study focused on the putative effects of roads on small-mammal communities in a high desert region of southern Utah. Specifically, we tested whether or not roads create adjacent zones characterized by lower small- mammal densities, abundance, and diversity. We sampled abundance of small mammals at increasing distances from Interstate 15 during two summers. We recorded 11 genera and 13 species. We detected no clear abundance, density, or diversity effects relative to distance from the road. Only two of 13 species were never captured near roads. The abundance of the remaining 11 small mammal species was either similar at different distances from the road or higher closer to the road. We conclude that although roads may act as barriers and possible sources of mortality, adjacent zones of vegetation often provide favorable microhabitat in the desert landscape for many small mammals. ?? 2009 by the author(s).

  16. 75 FR 27294 - Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Marine Mammal Stranding Report/Marine Mammal...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-05-14

    ... Mammal Stranding Report/Marine Mammal Rehabilitation Disposition Report AGENCY: National Oceanic and... mammal stranding report provides information on strandings so that the National Marine Fisheries Service... facilities. This information is submitted primarily by volunteer members of the marine mammal...

  17. Vacuoles in mammals

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    A vacuole is a membrane-bound subcellular structure involved in intracellular digestion. Instead of the large “vacuolar” organelles that are found in plants and fungi, animal cells possess lysosomes that are smaller in size and are enriched with hydrolytic enzymes similar to those found in the vacuoles. Large vacuolar structures are often observed in highly differentiated mammalian tissues such as embryonic visceral endoderm and absorbing epithelium. Vacuoles/lysosomes share a conserved mechanism of biogenesis, and they are at the terminal of the endocytic pathways, Recent genetic studies of the mammalian orthologs of Vam/Vps genes, which have essential functions for vacuole assembly, revealed that the dynamics of vacuoles/lysosomes are important for tissue differentiation and patterning through regulation of various molecular signaling events in mammals. PMID:23572040

  18. Genetic engineering of mammals.

    PubMed

    Wells, Kevin D

    2016-01-01

    Historically, genetic engineering for mammalian reproductive questions has been accomplished primarily in the mouse. However, all the genetic manipulations that can be done in the mouse can now be accomplished in most domesticated mammals. Random integration of transgenes, homologous recombination and gene editing are now routine for several mammalian species. For livestock, queries related to fertility can be asked directly for the species in question, without a need for a mouse model. For human clinical concerns, the most appropriate model should be selected based on physiology, anatomy, or even size. The mouse will continue to be a useful genetically engineered model. However, other species are now amenable to the full range of genetic manipulations and should be considered as possible models for human conditions when appropriate.

  19. Species Richness Responses to Structural or Compositional Habitat Diversity between and within Grassland Patches: A Multi-Taxon Approach

    PubMed Central

    Lengyel, Szabolcs; Déri, Eszter; Magura, Tibor

    2016-01-01

    Habitat diversity (spatial heterogeneity within and between habitat patches in a landscape, HD) is often invoked as a driver of species diversity at small spatial scales. However, the effect of HD on species richness (SR) of multiple taxa is not well understood. We quantified HD and SR in a wet-dry gradient of open grassland habitats in Hortobágy National Park (E-Hungary) and tested the effect of compositional and structural factors of HD on SR of flowering plants, orthopterans, true bugs, spiders, ground beetles and birds. Our dataset on 434 grassland species (170 plants, 264 animals) showed that the wet-dry gradient (compositional HD at the between-patch scale) was primarily related to SR in orthopterans, ground-dwelling arthropods, and all animals combined. The patchiness, or plant association richness, of the vegetation (compositional HD at the within-patch scale) was related to SR of vegetation-dwelling arthropods, whereas vegetation height (structural HD at the within-patch scale) was related to SR of ground-dwelling arthropods and birds. Patch area was related to SR only in birds, whereas management (grazing, mowing, none) was related to SR of plants and true bugs. All relationships between HD and SR were positive, indicating increasing SR with increasing HD. However, total SR was not related to HD because different taxa showed similar positive responses to different HD variables. Our findings, therefore, show that even though HD positively influences SR in a wide range of grassland taxa, each taxon responds to different compositional or structural measures of HD, resulting in the lack of a consistent relationship between HD and SR when taxon responses are pooled. The idiosyncratic responses shown here exemplify the difficulties in detecting general HD-SR relationships over multiple taxa. Our results also suggest that management and restoration aimed specifically to sustain or increase the diversity of habitats are required to conserve biodiversity in

  20. Species Richness Responses to Structural or Compositional Habitat Diversity between and within Grassland Patches: A Multi-Taxon Approach.

    PubMed

    Lengyel, Szabolcs; Déri, Eszter; Magura, Tibor

    2016-01-01

    Habitat diversity (spatial heterogeneity within and between habitat patches in a landscape, HD) is often invoked as a driver of species diversity at small spatial scales. However, the effect of HD on species richness (SR) of multiple taxa is not well understood. We quantified HD and SR in a wet-dry gradient of open grassland habitats in Hortobágy National Park (E-Hungary) and tested the effect of compositional and structural factors of HD on SR of flowering plants, orthopterans, true bugs, spiders, ground beetles and birds. Our dataset on 434 grassland species (170 plants, 264 animals) showed that the wet-dry gradient (compositional HD at the between-patch scale) was primarily related to SR in orthopterans, ground-dwelling arthropods, and all animals combined. The patchiness, or plant association richness, of the vegetation (compositional HD at the within-patch scale) was related to SR of vegetation-dwelling arthropods, whereas vegetation height (structural HD at the within-patch scale) was related to SR of ground-dwelling arthropods and birds. Patch area was related to SR only in birds, whereas management (grazing, mowing, none) was related to SR of plants and true bugs. All relationships between HD and SR were positive, indicating increasing SR with increasing HD. However, total SR was not related to HD because different taxa showed similar positive responses to different HD variables. Our findings, therefore, show that even though HD positively influences SR in a wide range of grassland taxa, each taxon responds to different compositional or structural measures of HD, resulting in the lack of a consistent relationship between HD and SR when taxon responses are pooled. The idiosyncratic responses shown here exemplify the difficulties in detecting general HD-SR relationships over multiple taxa. Our results also suggest that management and restoration aimed specifically to sustain or increase the diversity of habitats are required to conserve biodiversity in

  1. A new eutriconodont mammal and evolutionary development in early mammals.

    PubMed

    Luo, Zhe-Xi; Chen, Peiji; Li, Gang; Chen, Meng

    2007-03-15

    Detachment of the three tiny middle ear bones from the reptilian mandible is an important innovation of modern mammals. Here we describe a Mesozoic eutriconodont nested within crown mammals that clearly illustrates this transition: the middle ear bones are connected to the mandible via an ossified Meckel's cartilage. The connected ear and jaw structure is similar to the embryonic pattern in modern monotremes (egg-laying mammals) and placental mammals, but is a paedomorphic feature retained in the adult, unlike in monotreme and placental adults. This suggests that reversal to (or retention of) this premammalian ancestral condition is correlated with different developmental timing (heterochrony) in eutriconodonts. This new eutriconodont adds to the evidence of homoplasy of vertebral characters in the thoraco-lumbar transition and unfused lumbar ribs among early mammals. This is similar to the effect of homeobox gene patterning of vertebrae in modern mammals, making it plausible to extrapolate the effects of Hox gene patterning to account for homoplastic evolution of vertebral characters in early mammals.

  2. Climate and species richness predict the phylogenetic structure of African mammal communities.

    PubMed

    Kamilar, Jason M; Beaudrot, Lydia; Reed, Kaye E

    2015-01-01

    We have little knowledge of how climatic variation (and by proxy, habitat variation) influences the phylogenetic structure of tropical communities. Here, we quantified the phylogenetic structure of mammal communities in Africa to investigate how community structure varies with respect to climate and species richness variation across the continent. In addition, we investigated how phylogenetic patterns vary across carnivores, primates, and ungulates. We predicted that climate would differentially affect the structure of communities from different clades due to between-clade biological variation. We examined 203 communities using two metrics, the net relatedness (NRI) and nearest taxon (NTI) indices. We used simultaneous autoregressive models to predict community phylogenetic structure from climate variables and species richness. We found that most individual communities exhibited a phylogenetic structure consistent with a null model, but both climate and species richness significantly predicted variation in community phylogenetic metrics. Using NTI, species rich communities were composed of more distantly related taxa for all mammal communities, as well as for communities of carnivorans or ungulates. Temperature seasonality predicted the phylogenetic structure of mammal, carnivoran, and ungulate communities, and annual rainfall predicted primate community structure. Additional climate variables related to temperature and rainfall also predicted the phylogenetic structure of ungulate communities. We suggest that both past interspecific competition and habitat filtering have shaped variation in tropical mammal communities. The significant effect of climatic factors on community structure has important implications for the diversity of mammal communities given current models of future climate change.

  3. Marine mammal harvests and other interactions with humans.

    PubMed

    Hovelsrud, Grete K; McKenna, Meghan; Huntington, Henry P

    2008-03-01

    The Arctic is currently undergoing rapid social and environmental changes, and while the peoples of the north have a long history of adapting, the current changes in climate pose unprecedented challenges to the marine mammal-human interactions in the Arctic regions. Arctic marine mammals have been and remain an important resource for many of the indigenous and nonindigenous people of the north. Changes in climate are likely to bring about profound changes to the environment in which these animals live and subsequently to the hunting practices and livelihoods of the people who hunt them. Climate change will lead to reduction in the sea ice extent and thickness and will likely increase shipping through the Northern Sea Route and the Northwest Passage and oil and gas activities in Arctic areas previously inaccessible. Such activities will lead to more frequent interactions between humans and marine mammals. These activities may also change the distribution of marine mammals, affecting the hunters. This paper has three parts. First, an overview of marine mammal harvesting activities in the different circumpolar regions provides a snapshot of current practices and conditions. Second, case studies of selected Arctic regions, indigenous groups, and species provide insight into the manner in which climate change is already impacting marine mammal harvesting activities in the Arctic. Third, we describe how climate change is likely to affect shipping and oil and gas exploration and production activities in the Arctic and describe the possible implications of these changes for the marine mammal populations. We conclude that many of the consequences of climate change are likely to be negative for marine mammal hunters and for marine mammals. Lack of adequate baseline data, however, makes it difficult to identify specific causal mechanisms and thus to develop appropriate conservation measures. Nonetheless, the future of Arctic marine mammals and human uses of them depends on

  4. Inner architecture of vertebral centra in terrestrial and aquatic mammals: a two-dimensional comparative study.

    PubMed

    Dumont, Maitena; Laurin, Michel; Jacques, Florian; Pellé, Eric; Dabin, Willy; de Buffrénil, Vivian

    2013-05-01

    Inner vertebral architecture is poorly known, except in human and laboratory animals. In order to document this topic at a broad comparative level, a 2D-histomorphometric study of vertebral centra was conducted in a sample of 98 therian mammal species, spanning most of the size range and representing the main locomotor adaptations known in therian taxa. Eleven variables relative to the development and geometry of trabecular networks were extracted from CT scan mid-sagittal sections. Phylogeny-informed statistical tests were used to reveal the respective influences of phylogeny, size, and locomotion adaptations on mammalian vertebral structure. The use of random taxon reshuffling and squared change parsimony reveals that 9 of the 11 characteristics (the two exceptions are total sectional area and structural polarization) contain a phylogenetic signal. Linear discriminant analyses suggest that the sampled taxa can be arranged into three categories with respect to locomotion mode: a) terrestrial + flying + digging + amphibious forms, b) coastal oscillatory aquatic taxa, and c) pelagic oscillatory aquatic forms represented by oceanic cetaceans. Pairwise comparison tests and linear regressions show that, when specific size increases, the length of trabecular network (Tt.Tb.Le), as well as trabecular proliferation in total sections (Pr.Tb.Tt), increase with positive allometry. This process occurs in all locomotion categories but is particularly pronounced in pelagic oscillators. Conversely, mean trabecular width has a lesser increase with size in pelagic oscillators. Trabecular orientation is not influenced by size. All tests were corrected for multiple testing. By using six structural variables or indices, locomotion mode can be predicted with a 97.4% success rate for terrestrial forms, 66.7% for coastal oscillatory, and 81.3% for pelagic oscillatory. The possible functional meaning of these results and their potential use for paleobiological inference of locomotion in

  5. A cryptic taxon of Galápagos tortoise in conservation peril.

    PubMed

    Russello, Michael A; Glaberman, Scott; Gibbs, James P; Marquez, Cruz; Powell, Jeffrey R; Caccone, Adalgisa

    2005-09-22

    As once boldly stated, 'bad taxonomy can kill', highlighting the critical importance of accurate taxonomy for the conservation of endangered taxa. The concept continues to evolve almost 15 years later largely because most legal protections aimed at preserving biological diversity are based on formal taxonomic designations. In this paper we report unrecognized genetic divisions within the giant tortoises of the Galápagos. We found three distinct lineages among populations formerly considered a single taxon on the most populous and accessible island of Santa Cruz; their diagnosability, degree of genetic divergence and phylogenetic placement merit the recognition of at least one new taxon. These results demonstrate the fundamental importance of continuing taxonomic investigations to recognize biological diversity and designate units of conservation, even within long-studied organisms such as Galápagos tortoises, whose evolutionary heritage and contribution to human intellectual history warrant them special attention.

  6. Comparative Genomics of Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis Reveals a Strict Monophyletic Bifidobacterial Taxon

    PubMed Central

    Milani, Christian; Duranti, Sabrina; Lugli, Gabriele Andrea; Bottacini, Francesca; Strati, Francesco; Arioli, Stefania; Foroni, Elena; Turroni, Francesca; van Sinderen, Douwe

    2013-01-01

    Strains of Bifidobacterium animalis subsp. lactis are extensively exploited by the food industry as health-promoting bacteria, although the genetic variability of members belonging to this taxon has so far not received much scientific attention. In this article, we describe the complete genetic makeup of the B. animalis subsp. lactis Bl12 genome and discuss the genetic relatedness of this strain with other sequenced strains belonging to this taxon. Moreover, a detailed comparative genomic analysis of B. animalis subsp. lactis genomes was performed, which revealed a closely related and isogenic nature of all currently available B. animalis subsp. lactis strains, thus strongly suggesting a closed pan-genome structure of this bacterial group. PMID:23645200

  7. A cryptic taxon of Galápagos tortoise in conservation peril

    PubMed Central

    Russello, Michael A; Glaberman, Scott; Gibbs, James P; Marquez, Cruz; Powell, Jeffrey R; Caccone, Adalgisa

    2005-01-01

    As once boldly stated, ‘bad taxonomy can kill’, highlighting the critical importance of accurate taxonomy for the conservation of endangered taxa. The concept continues to evolve almost 15 years later largely because most legal protections aimed at preserving biological diversity are based on formal taxonomic designations. In this paper we report unrecognized genetic divisions within the giant tortoises of the Galápagos. We found three distinct lineages among populations formerly considered a single taxon on the most populous and accessible island of Santa Cruz; their diagnosability, degree of genetic divergence and phylogenetic placement merit the recognition of at least one new taxon. These results demonstrate the fundamental importance of continuing taxonomic investigations to recognize biological diversity and designate units of conservation, even within long-studied organisms such as Galápagos tortoises, whose evolutionary heritage and contribution to human intellectual history warrant them special attention. PMID:17148189

  8. Sex control in mammals.

    PubMed

    Bhattacharya, B C

    1958-01-01

    As a step toward control of sex of offspring in mammals, a method for separation of X- and Y-chromosome sperm, based on the differing specific gravity of the 2 types, is described. Sperm sinking to the bottom of an appropriate viscous medium are predominantly the denser X-Chromosome sperm. 99 female rabbits were inseminated with sperm that had been suspended for 24 hours in colloidial media: 38 females received sperm taken from the bottom of a dense medium, and 61 received sperm drawn from the top of a lighter medium. Only 18.2% of the does became pregnant, probably due to insufficient concentration of sperm. Offspring of 4 does impregnated with the lightest fraction were 85.7% male offspring of 7 does impregnated with the heaviest fraction were 77.3% female (vs. 48.2% normal female sex raio; p less than .05). For 7 does impregnanted with sperm taken from nearer the middle of the medium, offspring were 51.7% male.

  9. Merging ancient and modern DNA: extinct seabird taxon rediscovered in the North Tasman Sea.

    PubMed

    Steeves, Tammy E; Holdaway, Richard N; Hale, Marie L; McLay, Emma; McAllan, Ian A W; Christian, Margaret; Hauber, Mark E; Bunce, Michael

    2010-02-23

    Ancient DNA has revolutionized the way in which evolutionary biologists research both extinct and extant taxa, from the inference of evolutionary history to the resolution of taxonomy. Here, we present, to our knowledge, the first study to report the rediscovery of an 'extinct' avian taxon, the Tasman booby (Sula tasmani), using classical palaeontological data combined with ancient and modern DNA data. Contrary to earlier work, we show an overlap in size between fossil and modern birds in the North Tasman Sea (classified currently as S. tasmani and Sula dactylatra fullagari, respectively). In addition, we show that Holocene fossil birds have mitochondrial control region sequences that are identical to those found in modern birds. These results indicate that the Tasman booby is not an extinct taxon: S. dactylatra fullagari O'Brien & Davies, 1990 is therefore a junior synonym of Sula tasmani van Tets, Meredith, Fullagar & Davidson, 1988 and all North Tasman Sea boobies should be known as S. d. tasmani. In addition to reporting the rediscovery of an extinct avian taxon, our study highlights the need for researchers to be cognizant of multidisciplinary approaches to understanding taxonomy and past biodiversity.

  10. Evidence of taxon cycles in an Indo-Pacific passerine bird radiation (Aves: Pachycephala)

    PubMed Central

    Jønsson, Knud Andreas; Irestedt, Martin; Christidis, Les; Clegg, Sonya M.; Holt, Ben G.; Fjeldså, Jon

    2014-01-01

    Many insular taxa possess extraordinary abilities to disperse but may differ in their abilities to diversify and compete. While some taxa are widespread across archipelagos, others have disjunct (relictual) populations. These types of taxa, exemplified in the literature by selections of unrelated taxa, have been interpreted as representing a continuum of expansions and contractions (i.e. taxon cycles). Here, we use molecular data of 35 out of 40 species of the avian genus Pachycephala (including 54 out of 66 taxa in Pachycephala pectoralis (sensu lato), to assess the spatio-temporal evolution of the group. We also include data on species distributions, morphology, habitat and elevational ranges to test a number of predictions associated with the taxon-cycle hypothesis. We demonstrate that relictual species persist on the largest and highest islands across the Indo-Pacific, whereas recent archipelago expansions resulted in colonization of all islands in a region. For co-occurring island taxa, the earliest colonists generally inhabit the interior and highest parts of an island, with little spatial overlap with later colonists. Collectively, our data support the idea that taxa continuously pass through phases of expansions and contractions (i.e. taxon cycles). PMID:24403319

  11. 75 FR 76399 - Marine Mammals

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-12-08

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XZ66 Marine Mammals AGENCY: National Marine... Marine Fisheries Service. BILLING CODE 3510-22-P...

  12. Invasive mammal eradication on islands results in substantial conservation gains.

    PubMed

    Jones, Holly P; Holmes, Nick D; Butchart, Stuart H M; Tershy, Bernie R; Kappes, Peter J; Corkery, Ilse; Aguirre-Muñoz, Alfonso; Armstrong, Doug P; Bonnaud, Elsa; Burbidge, Andrew A; Campbell, Karl; Courchamp, Franck; Cowan, Philip E; Cuthbert, Richard J; Ebbert, Steve; Genovesi, Piero; Howald, Gregg R; Keitt, Bradford S; Kress, Stephen W; Miskelly, Colin M; Oppel, Steffen; Poncet, Sally; Rauzon, Mark J; Rocamora, Gérard; Russell, James C; Samaniego-Herrera, Araceli; Seddon, Philip J; Spatz, Dena R; Towns, David R; Croll, Donald A

    2016-04-12

    More than US$21 billion is spent annually on biodiversity conservation. Despite their importance for preventing or slowing extinctions and preserving biodiversity, conservation interventions are rarely assessed systematically for their global impact. Islands house a disproportionately higher amount of biodiversity compared with mainlands, much of which is highly threatened with extinction. Indeed, island species make up nearly two-thirds of recent extinctions. Islands therefore are critical targets of conservation. We used an extensive literature and database review paired with expert interviews to estimate the global benefits of an increasingly used conservation action to stem biodiversity loss: eradication of invasive mammals on islands. We found 236 native terrestrial insular faunal species (596 populations) that benefitted through positive demographic and/or distributional responses from 251 eradications of invasive mammals on 181 islands. Seven native species (eight populations) were negatively impacted by invasive mammal eradication. Four threatened species had their International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List extinction-risk categories reduced as a direct result of invasive mammal eradication, and no species moved to a higher extinction-risk category. We predict that 107 highly threatened birds, mammals, and reptiles on the IUCN Red List-6% of all these highly threatened species-likely have benefitted from invasive mammal eradications on islands. Because monitoring of eradication outcomes is sporadic and limited, the impacts of global eradications are likely greater than we report here. Our results highlight the importance of invasive mammal eradication on islands for protecting the world's most imperiled fauna.

  13. Invasive mammal eradication on islands results in substantial conservation gains

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Holly P.; Holmes, Nick D.; Butchart, Stuart H. M.; Tershy, Bernie R.; Kappes, Peter J.; Corkery, Ilse; Aguirre-Muñoz, Alfonso; Armstrong, Doug P.; Bonnaud, Elsa; Burbidge, Andrew A.; Campbell, Karl; Courchamp, Franck; Cowan, Philip E.; Cuthbert, Richard J.; Ebbert, Steve; Genovesi, Piero; Howald, Gregg R.; Keitt, Bradford S.; Kress, Stephen W.; Miskelly, Colin M.; Oppel, Steffen; Poncet, Sally; Rauzon, Mark J.; Rocamora, Gérard; Russell, James C.; Samaniego-Herrera, Araceli; Seddon, Philip J.; Spatz, Dena R.; Towns, David R.; Croll, Donald A.

    2016-01-01

    More than US$21 billion is spent annually on biodiversity conservation. Despite their importance for preventing or slowing extinctions and preserving biodiversity, conservation interventions are rarely assessed systematically for their global impact. Islands house a disproportionately higher amount of biodiversity compared with mainlands, much of which is highly threatened with extinction. Indeed, island species make up nearly two-thirds of recent extinctions. Islands therefore are critical targets of conservation. We used an extensive literature and database review paired with expert interviews to estimate the global benefits of an increasingly used conservation action to stem biodiversity loss: eradication of invasive mammals on islands. We found 236 native terrestrial insular faunal species (596 populations) that benefitted through positive demographic and/or distributional responses from 251 eradications of invasive mammals on 181 islands. Seven native species (eight populations) were negatively impacted by invasive mammal eradication. Four threatened species had their International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List extinction-risk categories reduced as a direct result of invasive mammal eradication, and no species moved to a higher extinction-risk category. We predict that 107 highly threatened birds, mammals, and reptiles on the IUCN Red List—6% of all these highly threatened species—likely have benefitted from invasive mammal eradications on islands. Because monitoring of eradication outcomes is sporadic and limited, the impacts of global eradications are likely greater than we report here. Our results highlight the importance of invasive mammal eradication on islands for protecting the world's most imperiled fauna. PMID:27001852

  14. Physiological Monitoring in Diving Mammals

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-09-30

    1 DISTRIBUTION STATEMENT A. Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. Physiological Monitoring in Diving Mammals Andreas...large, freely diving whales. We wanted to study physiological responses during diving in free-ranging, deep diving cetaceans. The idea was to measure...contain a sensor to be implanted into the muscle. The logger will collect physiological data from muscle tissue in freely diving marine mammals. The

  15. Physiological Monitoring in Diving Mammals

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2014-09-30

    isobestic point, the point where the spectra cross over (see below). Data from 5 marine mammal species (killer whale , 5 beluga whale , pilot whale ...spectra of HbO2 and HbR in several species of marine mammals (orcas, short-finned pilot whales , belugas , and northern elephant seals) and compare these...large, freely diving whales . We intend to use this data logger to measure muscle O2 saturation and determine how blood flow to muscle is altered during

  16. Clonal diversity of the taxon Porphyromonas gingivalis assessed by random amplified polymorphic DNA fingerprinting.

    PubMed Central

    Ménard, C; Mouton, C

    1995-01-01

    A total of 97 strains of the periopathogen Porphyromonas gingivalis were collected. This collection included laboratory strains and clinical isolates of human origin with diverse clinical and geographical origins. Biological diversity was further increased by including 32 strains isolated from the oral cavities of nine different animal species. Genomic fingerprints of the 129 strains were generated as random amplified polymorphic DNAs (RAPDs) by the technique of PCR amplification with a single primer of arbitrary sequence. Four nonameric oligonucleotides were used as single primers, and the banding patterns of the DNA products separated on agarose gels were compared after ethidium ethidium bromide staining. Distance coeffients based on the positions of the major DNA fragments were calculated, and dendrograms were generated. We identified 102 clonal types (CTs) that could be assembled into three main groups by cluster analysis by the unweighted pair group method with mathematic averages. Group I (n = 79 CTs) included all 97 human strains and 6 monkey isolates. The strains in group II (n = 22 CTs) and III (n = 1 CT) were strongly differentiated from those in group I and included only strains of animal origin; they likely represent two cryptic species within the present P. gingivalis taxon. We observed that strains from Old World monkeys clustered together with the human genotype, whereas strains from New World monkeys clustered with the animal genotype. Our results with human strains also indicated that (i) the population structure is basically clonal, (ii) no dominant or widespread CT could be observed, and (iii) no relationship could be established between specific clusters of CTs and the periodontal status of the host. Our results corroborate previous findings by B. G. Loos, D. W. Dyer, T. S. Whittam, and R. K. Selander (Infect. Immun. 61:204-212, 1993) and suggest that P. gingivalis should be considered a commensal of the oral cavity acting as an opportunistic

  17. 50 CFR 14.18 - Marine mammals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Marine mammals. 14.18 Section 14.18....18 Marine mammals. Any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States who has lawfully taken a marine mammal on the high seas and who is authorized to import such marine mammal in...

  18. 50 CFR 14.18 - Marine mammals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Marine mammals. 14.18 Section 14.18....18 Marine mammals. Any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States who has lawfully taken a marine mammal on the high seas and who is authorized to import such marine mammal in...

  19. 50 CFR 14.18 - Marine mammals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Marine mammals. 14.18 Section 14.18....18 Marine mammals. Any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States who has lawfully taken a marine mammal on the high seas and who is authorized to import such marine mammal in...

  20. 50 CFR 14.18 - Marine mammals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ....18 Marine mammals. Any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States who has lawfully taken a marine mammal on the high seas and who is authorized to import such marine mammal in accordance... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Marine mammals. 14.18 Section...

  1. 50 CFR 14.18 - Marine mammals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ....18 Marine mammals. Any person subject to the jurisdiction of the United States who has lawfully taken a marine mammal on the high seas and who is authorized to import such marine mammal in accordance... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 1 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Marine mammals. 14.18 Section...

  2. Evolution of mammals and their gut microbes.

    PubMed

    Ley, Ruth E; Hamady, Micah; Lozupone, Catherine; Turnbaugh, Peter J; Ramey, Rob Roy; Bircher, J Stephen; Schlegel, Michael L; Tucker, Tammy A; Schrenzel, Mark D; Knight, Rob; Gordon, Jeffrey I

    2008-06-20

    Mammals are metagenomic in that they are composed of not only their own gene complements but also those of all of their associated microbes. To understand the coevolution of the mammals and their indigenous microbial communities, we conducted a network-based analysis of bacterial 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequences from the fecal microbiota of humans and 59 other mammalian species living in two zoos and in the wild. The results indicate that host diet and phylogeny both influence bacterial diversity, which increases from carnivory to omnivory to herbivory; that bacterial communities codiversified with their hosts; and that the gut microbiota of humans living a modern life-style is typical of omnivorous primates.

  3. 50 CFR 18.25 - Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal... IMPORTATION OF WILDLIFE AND PLANTS (CONTINUED) MARINE MAMMALS General Exceptions § 18.25 Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal products. (a) The provisions of the Act and these regulations shall not apply:...

  4. 50 CFR 18.25 - Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 8 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal... IMPORTATION OF WILDLIFE AND PLANTS (CONTINUED) MARINE MAMMALS General Exceptions § 18.25 Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal products. (a) The provisions of the Act and these regulations shall not apply:...

  5. 50 CFR 18.25 - Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 6 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal... IMPORTATION OF WILDLIFE AND PLANTS (CONTINUED) MARINE MAMMALS General Exceptions § 18.25 Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal products. (a) The provisions of the Act and these regulations shall not apply:...

  6. 50 CFR 18.25 - Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal... IMPORTATION OF WILDLIFE AND PLANTS (CONTINUED) MARINE MAMMALS General Exceptions § 18.25 Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal products. (a) The provisions of the Act and these regulations shall not apply:...

  7. 50 CFR 18.25 - Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal... IMPORTATION OF WILDLIFE AND PLANTS (CONTINUED) MARINE MAMMALS General Exceptions § 18.25 Exempted marine mammals or marine mammal products. (a) The provisions of the Act and these regulations shall not apply:...

  8. Distribution of Wild Mammal Assemblages along an Urban–Rural–Forest Landscape Gradient in Warm-Temperate East Asia

    PubMed Central

    Saito, Masayuki; Koike, Fumito

    2013-01-01

    Urbanization may alter mammal assemblages via habitat loss, food subsidies, and other factors related to human activities. The general distribution patterns of wild mammal assemblages along urban–rural–forest landscape gradients have not been studied, although many studies have focused on a single species or taxon, such as rodents. We quantitatively evaluated the effects of the urban–rural–forest gradient and spatial scale on the distributions of large and mid-sized mammals in the world's largest metropolitan area in warm-temperate Asia using nonspecific camera-trapping along two linear transects spanning from the urban zone in the Tokyo metropolitan area to surrounding rural and forest landscapes. Many large and mid-sized species generally decreased from forest landscapes to urban cores, although some species preferred anthropogenic landscapes. Sika deer (Cervus nippon), Reeves' muntjac (Muntiacus reevesi), Japanese macaque (Macaca fuscata), Japanese squirrel (Sciurus lis), Japanese marten (Martes melampus), Japanese badger (Meles anakuma), and wild boar (Sus scrofa) generally dominated the mammal assemblage of the forest landscape. Raccoon (Procyon lotor), raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides), and Japanese hare (Lepus brachyurus) dominated the mammal assemblage in the intermediate zone (i.e., rural and suburban landscape). Cats (feral and free-roaming housecats; Felis catus) were common in the urban assemblage. The key spatial scales for forest species were more than 4000-m radius, indicating that conservation and management plans for these mammal assemblages should be considered on large spatial scales. However, small green spaces will also be important for mammal conservation in the urban landscape, because an indigenous omnivore (raccoon dog) had a smaller key spatial scale (500-m radius) than those of forest mammals. Urbanization was generally the most important factor in the distributions of mammals, and it is necessary to consider the spatial

  9. Distribution of wild mammal assemblages along an urban-rural-forest landscape gradient in warm-temperate East Asia.

    PubMed

    Saito, Masayuki; Koike, Fumito

    2013-01-01

    Urbanization may alter mammal assemblages via habitat loss, food subsidies, and other factors related to human activities. The general distribution patterns of wild mammal assemblages along urban-rural-forest landscape gradients have not been studied, although many studies have focused on a single species or taxon, such as rodents. We quantitatively evaluated the effects of the urban-rural-forest gradient and spatial scale on the distributions of large and mid-sized mammals in the world's largest metropolitan area in warm-temperate Asia using nonspecific camera-trapping along two linear transects spanning from the urban zone in the Tokyo metropolitan area to surrounding rural and forest landscapes. Many large and mid-sized species generally decreased from forest landscapes to urban cores, although some species preferred anthropogenic landscapes. Sika deer (Cervus nippon), Reeves' muntjac (Muntiacus reevesi), Japanese macaque (Macaca fuscata), Japanese squirrel (Sciurus lis), Japanese marten (Martes melampus), Japanese badger (Meles anakuma), and wild boar (Sus scrofa) generally dominated the mammal assemblage of the forest landscape. Raccoon (Procyon lotor), raccoon dog (Nyctereutes procyonoides), and Japanese hare (Lepus brachyurus) dominated the mammal assemblage in the intermediate zone (i.e., rural and suburban landscape). Cats (feral and free-roaming housecats; Felis catus) were common in the urban assemblage. The key spatial scales for forest species were more than 4000-m radius, indicating that conservation and management plans for these mammal assemblages should be considered on large spatial scales. However, small green spaces will also be important for mammal conservation in the urban landscape, because an indigenous omnivore (raccoon dog) had a smaller key spatial scale (500-m radius) than those of forest mammals. Urbanization was generally the most important factor in the distributions of mammals, and it is necessary to consider the spatial scale of

  10. Additional material of the enigmatic Early Miocene mammal Kelba and its relationship to the order Ptolemaiida

    PubMed Central

    Cote, Susanne; Werdelin, Lars; Seiffert, Erik R.; Barry, John C.

    2007-01-01

    Kelba quadeemae, a fossil mammal from the Early Miocene of East Africa, was originally named on the basis of three isolated upper molars. Kelba has previously been interpreted as a creodont, a pantolestid, an insectivoran, and a hemigaline viverrid. The true affinities of this taxon have remained unclear because of the limited material and its unique morphology relative to other Miocene African mammals. New material of Kelba from several East African Miocene localities, most notably a skull from the Early Miocene locality of Songhor in Western Kenya, permits analysis of the affinities of Kelba and documents the lower dentition of this taxon. Morphological comparison of this new material clearly demonstrates that Kelba is a member of the order Ptolemaiida, a poorly understood group whose fossil record was previously restricted to the Oligocene Fayum deposits of northern Egypt. Phylogenetic analysis supports the monophyly of the Ptolemaiida, including Kelba, and recovers two monophyletic clades within the order. We provide new family names for these groups and an emended diagnosis for the order. The discovery of ptolemaiidans from the Miocene of East Africa is significant because it extends the known temporal range of the order by >10 million years and the geographic range by >3,200 km. Although the higher-level affinities of the Ptolemaiida remain obscure, their unique morphology and distribution through a larger area of Africa (and exclusively Africa) lend support to the idea that Ptolemaiida may have an ancient African origin. PMID:17372202

  11. Impact of Non-Native Terrestrial Mammals on the Structure of the Terrestrial Mammal Food Web of Newfoundland, Canada

    PubMed Central

    Strong, Justin S.; Leroux, Shawn J.

    2014-01-01

    The island of Newfoundland is unique because it has as many non-native terrestrial mammals as native ones. The impacts of non-native species on native flora and fauna can be profound and invasive species have been identified as one of the primary drivers of species extinction. Few studies, however, have investigated the effects of a non-native species assemblage on community and ecosystem properties. We reviewed the literature to build the first terrestrial mammal food web for the island of Newfoundland and then used network analyses to investigate how the timing of introductions and trophic position of non-native species has affected the structure of the terrestrial mammal food web in Newfoundland. The first non-native mammals (house mouse and brown rat) became established in Newfoundland with human settlement in the late 15th and early 16th centuries. Coyotes and southern red-backed voles are the most recent mammals to establish themselves on the island in 1985 and 1998, respectively. The fraction of intermediate species increased with the addition of non-native mammals over time whereas the fraction of basal and top species declined over time. This increase in intermediate species mediated by non-native species arrivals led to an overall increase in the terrestrial mammal food web connectance and generality (i.e. mean number of prey per predator). This diverse prey base and sources of carrion may have facilitated the natural establishment of coyotes on the island. Also, there is some evidence that the introduction of non-native prey species such as the southern red-backed vole has contributed to the recovery of the threatened American marten. Long-term monitoring of the food web is required to understand and predict the impacts of the diverse novel interactions that are developing in the terrestrial mammal food web of Newfoundland. PMID:25170923

  12. Impact of non-native terrestrial mammals on the structure of the terrestrial mammal food web of Newfoundland, Canada.

    PubMed

    Strong, Justin S; Leroux, Shawn J

    2014-01-01

    The island of Newfoundland is unique because it has as many non-native terrestrial mammals as native ones. The impacts of non-native species on native flora and fauna can be profound and invasive species have been identified as one of the primary drivers of species extinction. Few studies, however, have investigated the effects of a non-native species assemblage on community and ecosystem properties. We reviewed the literature to build the first terrestrial mammal food web for the island of Newfoundland and then used network analyses to investigate how the timing of introductions and trophic position of non-native species has affected the structure of the terrestrial mammal food web in Newfoundland. The first non-native mammals (house mouse and brown rat) became established in Newfoundland with human settlement in the late 15th and early 16th centuries. Coyotes and southern red-backed voles are the most recent mammals to establish themselves on the island in 1985 and 1998, respectively. The fraction of intermediate species increased with the addition of non-native mammals over time whereas the fraction of basal and top species declined over time. This increase in intermediate species mediated by non-native species arrivals led to an overall increase in the terrestrial mammal food web connectance and generality (i.e. mean number of prey per predator). This diverse prey base and sources of carrion may have facilitated the natural establishment of coyotes on the island. Also, there is some evidence that the introduction of non-native prey species such as the southern red-backed vole has contributed to the recovery of the threatened American marten. Long-term monitoring of the food web is required to understand and predict the impacts of the diverse novel interactions that are developing in the terrestrial mammal food web of Newfoundland.

  13. Eye shape and the nocturnal bottleneck of mammals.

    PubMed

    Hall, Margaret I; Kamilar, Jason M; Kirk, E Christopher

    2012-12-22

    Most vertebrate groups exhibit eye shapes that vary predictably with activity pattern. Nocturnal vertebrates typically have large corneas relative to eye size as an adaptation for increased visual sensitivity. Conversely, diurnal vertebrates generally demonstrate smaller corneas relative to eye size as an adaptation for increased visual acuity. By contrast, several studies have concluded that many mammals exhibit typical nocturnal eye shapes, regardless of activity pattern. However, a recent study has argued that new statistical methods allow eye shape to accurately predict activity patterns of mammals, including cathemeral species (animals that are equally likely to be awake and active at any time of day or night). Here, we conduct a detailed analysis of eye shape and activity pattern in mammals, using a broad comparative sample of 266 species. We find that the eye shapes of cathemeral mammals completely overlap with nocturnal and diurnal species. Additionally, most diurnal and cathemeral mammals have eye shapes that are most similar to those of nocturnal birds and lizards. The only mammalian clade that diverges from this pattern is anthropoids, which have convergently evolved eye shapes similar to those of diurnal birds and lizards. Our results provide additional evidence for a nocturnal 'bottleneck' in the early evolution of crown mammals.

  14. Marine Mammal Impacts in Exploited Ecosystems: Would Large Scale Culling Benefit Fisheries?

    PubMed Central

    Morissette, Lyne; Christensen, Villy; Pauly, Daniel

    2012-01-01

    Competition between marine mammals and fisheries for marine resources—whether real or perceived—has become a major issue for several countries and in international fora. We examined trophic interactions between marine mammals and fisheries based on a resource overlap index, using seven Ecopath models including marine mammal groups. On a global scale, most food consumed by marine mammals consisted of prey types that were not the main target of fisheries. For each ecosystem, the primary production required (PPR) to sustain marine mammals was less than half the PPR to sustain fisheries catches. We also developed an index representing the mean trophic level of marine mammal's consumption (TLQ) and compared it with the mean trophic level of fisheries' catches (TLC). Our results showed that overall TLQ was lower than TLC (2.88 versus 3.42). As fisheries increasingly exploit lower-trophic level species, the competition with marine mammals may become more important. We used mixed trophic impact analysis to evaluate indirect trophic effects of marine mammals, and in some cases found beneficial effects on some prey. Finally, we assessed the change in the trophic structure of an ecosystem after a simulated extirpation of marine mammal populations. We found that this lead to alterations in the structure of the ecosystems, and that there was no clear and direct relationship between marine mammals' predation and the potential catch by fisheries. Indeed, total biomass, with no marine mammals in the ecosystem, generally remained surprisingly similar, or even decreased for some species. PMID:22970153

  15. Regional Diversity and Diversification in Mammals.

    PubMed

    Machac, Antonin; Graham, Catherine H

    2017-01-01

    The effects of regional diversity on diversification remain controversial. The classic hypothesis that diversification decelerates as regional diversity increases has been recently revived. Yet, there is little geographic evidence for slower diversification across regions of high diversity, and diversity is often thought to promote diversification through its effects on ecological divergence and speciation. Here, we use the newest phylogeny for mammals (4,990 species) and two different methods to test the effects of regional diversity on diversification. We find that regions of high diversity are dominated by expanding clades that are far from their estimated carrying capacities. Regions of low diversity host clades that are small and mostly saturated. These results were supported across mammals and their six largest orders. They were corroborated by the two methods when controlling for clade relatedness, clade nestedness, and clade size. Together, these results reject the hypothesis that high geographic concentration of mammals effectively suppresses their further diversification. Instead, highly diverse regions (especially the tropics) seem to act as the engine of mammalian richness.

  16. Evaluating and interpreting cross-taxon congruence: Potential pitfalls and solutions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gioria, Margherita; Bacaro, Giovanni; Feehan, John

    2011-05-01

    Characterizing the relationship between different taxonomic groups is critical to identify potential surrogates for biodiversity. Previous studies have shown that cross-taxa relationships are generally weak and/or inconsistent. The difficulties in finding predictive patterns have often been attributed to the spatial and temporal scales of these studies and on the differences in the measure used to evaluate such relationships (species richness versus composition). However, the choice of the analytical approach used to evaluate cross-taxon congruence inevitably represents a major source of variation. Here, we described the use of a range of methods that can be used to comprehensively assess cross-taxa relationships. To do so, we used data for two taxonomic groups, wetland plants and water beetles, collected from 54 farmland ponds in Ireland. Specifically, we used the Pearson correlation and rarefaction curves to analyse patterns in species richness, while Mantel tests, Procrustes analysis, and co-correspondence analysis were used to evaluate congruence in species composition. We compared the results of these analyses and we described some of the potential pitfalls associated with the use of each of these statistical approaches. Cross-taxon congruence was moderate to strong, depending on the choice of the analytical approach, on the nature of the response variable, and on local and environmental conditions. Our findings indicate that multiple approaches and measures of community structure are required for a comprehensive assessment of cross-taxa relationships. In particular, we showed that selection of surrogate taxa in conservation planning should not be based on a single statistic expressing the degree of correlation in species richness or composition. Potential solutions to the analytical issues associated with the assessment of cross-taxon congruence are provided and the implications of our findings in the selection of surrogates for biodiversity are discussed.

  17. Competitive growth in a cooperative mammal.

    PubMed

    Huchard, Elise; English, Sinead; Bell, Matt B V; Thavarajah, Nathan; Clutton-Brock, Tim

    2016-05-26

    In many animal societies where hierarchies govern access to reproduction, the social rank of individuals is related to their age and weight and slow-growing animals may lose their place in breeding queues to younger 'challengers' that grow faster. The threat of being displaced might be expected to favour the evolution of competitive growth strategies, where individuals increase their own rate of growth in response to increases in the growth of potential rivals. Although growth rates have been shown to vary in relation to changes in the social environment in several vertebrates including fish and mammals, it is not yet known whether individuals increase their growth rates in response to increases in the growth of particular reproductive rivals. Here we show that, in wild Kalahari meerkats (Suricata suricatta), subordinates of both sexes respond to experimentally induced increases in the growth of same-sex rivals by raising their own growth rate and food intake. In addition, when individuals acquire dominant status, they show a secondary period of accelerated growth whose magnitude increases if the difference between their own weight and that of the heaviest subordinate of the same sex in their group is small. Our results show that individuals adjust their growth to the size of their closest competitor and raise the possibility that similar plastic responses to the risk of competition may occur in other social mammals, including domestic animals and primates.

  18. Ectoparasites in small exotic mammals.

    PubMed

    Fehr, Michael; Koestlinger, Saskia

    2013-09-01

    Ectoparasites inhabiting the skin are responsible for significant problems in small mammals, owing to ingestion of blood, lymph, sebaceous secretions, and scavenging skin debris, as well as a hypersensitivity reaction to parasite antigen resulting in severe pruritus and subsequent self-trauma-induced lesions. In general practice, the most common diagnosis in exotic pets is an unspecified mite infestation, but other ectoparasites such as lice, fleas, insects, or even helminths may cause dermatologic diseases. If treatment with topical insecticides is planned, the small mammal should be isolated for a few hours to enable drying and spreading of the product.

  19. 76 FR 35995 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Operation and...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-06-21

    ... Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Operation and Maintenance of the Neptune Liquefied Natural Gas Facility of Massachusetts; Correction AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS),...

  20. Tyrosine metabolic enzymes from insects and mammals: a comparative perspective.

    PubMed

    Vavricka, Christopher John; Han, Qian; Mehere, Prajwalini; Ding, Haizhen; Christensen, Bruce M; Li, Jianyong

    2014-02-01

    Differences in the metabolism of tyrosine between insects and mammals present an interesting example of molecular evolution. Both insects and mammals possess fine-tuned systems of enzymes to meet their specific demands for tyrosine metabolites; however, more homologous enzymes involved in tyrosine metabolism have emerged in many insect species. Without knowledge of modern genomics, one might suppose that mammals, which are generally more complex than insects and require tyrosine as a precursor for important catecholamine neurotransmitters and for melanin, should possess more enzymes to control tyrosine metabolism. Therefore, the question of why insects actually possess more tyrosine metabolic enzymes is quite interesting. It has long been known that insects rely heavily on tyrosine metabolism for cuticle hardening and for innate immune responses, and these evolutionary constraints are likely the key answers to this question. In terms of melanogenesis, mammals also possess a high level of regulation; yet mammalian systems possess more mechanisms for detoxification whereas insects accelerate pathways like melanogenesis and therefore must bear increased oxidative pressure. Our research group has had the opportunity to characterize the structure and function of many key proteins involved in tyrosine metabolism from both insects and mammals. In this mini review we will give a brief overview of our research on tyrosine metabolic enzymes in the scope of an evolutionary perspective of mammals in comparison to insects.

  1. Solitary mammals provide an animal model for autism spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Reser, Jared Edward

    2014-02-01

    Species of solitary mammals are known to exhibit specialized, neurological adaptations that prepare them to focus working memory on food procurement and survival rather than on social interaction. Solitary and nonmonogamous mammals, which do not form strong social bonds, have been documented to exhibit behaviors and biomarkers that are similar to endophenotypes in autism. Both individuals on the autism spectrum and certain solitary mammals have been reported to be low on measures of affiliative need, bodily expressiveness, bonding and attachment, direct and shared gazing, emotional engagement, conspecific recognition, partner preference, separation distress, and social approach behavior. Solitary mammals also exhibit certain biomarkers that are characteristic of autism, including diminished oxytocin and vasopressin signaling, dysregulation of the endogenous opioid system, increased Hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPA) activity to social encounters, and reduced HPA activity to separation and isolation. The extent of these similarities suggests that solitary mammals may offer a useful model of autism spectrum disorders and an opportunity for investigating genetic and epigenetic etiological factors. If the brain in autism can be shown to exhibit distinct homologous or homoplastic similarities to the brains of solitary animals, it will reveal that they may be central to the phenotype and should be targeted for further investigation. Research of the neurological, cellular, and molecular basis of these specializations in other mammals may provide insight for behavioral analysis, communication intervention, and psychopharmacology for autism.

  2. Rediscovery and reclassification of the dipteran taxon Nothomicrodon Wheeler, an exclusive endoparasitoid of gyne ant larvae

    PubMed Central

    Pérez-Lachaud, Gabriela; Jahyny, Benoit J. B.; Ståhls, Gunilla; Rotheray, Graham; Delabie, Jacques H. C.; Lachaud, Jean-Paul

    2017-01-01

    The myrmecophile larva of the dipteran taxon Nothomicrodon Wheeler is rediscovered, almost a century after its original description and unique report. The systematic position of this dipteran has remained enigmatic due to the absence of reared imagos to confirm indentity. We also failed to rear imagos, but we scrutinized entire nests of the Brazilian arboreal dolichoderine ant Azteca chartifex which, combined with morphological and molecular studies, enabled us to establish beyond doubt that Nothomicrodon belongs to the Phoridae (Insecta: Diptera), not the Syrphidae where it was first placed, and that the species we studied is an endoparasitoid of the larvae of A. chartifex, exclusively attacking sexual female (gyne) larvae. Northomicrodon parasitism can exert high fitness costs to a host colony. Our discovery adds one more case to the growing number of phorid taxa known to parasitize ant larvae and suggests that many others remain to be discovered. Our findings and literature review confirm that the Phoridae is the only taxon known that parasitizes both adults and the immature stages of different castes of ants, thus threatening ants on all fronts. PMID:28361946

  3. Delineating Species with DNA Barcodes: A Case of Taxon Dependent Method Performance in Moths

    PubMed Central

    Kekkonen, Mari; Mutanen, Marko; Kaila, Lauri; Nieminen, Marko; Hebert, Paul D. N.

    2015-01-01

    The accelerating loss of biodiversity has created a need for more effective ways to discover species. Novel algorithmic approaches for analyzing sequence data combined with rapidly expanding DNA barcode libraries provide a potential solution. While several analytical methods are available for the delineation of operational taxonomic units (OTUs), few studies have compared their performance. This study compares the performance of one morphology-based and four DNA-based (BIN, parsimony networks, ABGD, GMYC) methods on two groups of gelechioid moths. It examines 92 species of Finnish Gelechiinae and 103 species of Australian Elachistinae which were delineated by traditional taxonomy. The results reveal a striking difference in performance between the two taxa with all four DNA-based methods. OTU counts in the Elachistinae showed a wider range and a relatively low (ca. 65%) OTU match with reference species while OTU counts were more congruent and performance was higher (ca. 90%) in the Gelechiinae. Performance rose when only monophyletic species were compared, but the taxon-dependence remained. None of the DNA-based methods produced a correct match with non-monophyletic species, but singletons were handled well. A simulated test of morphospecies-grouping performed very poorly in revealing taxon diversity in these small, dull-colored moths. Despite the strong performance of analyses based on DNA barcodes, species delineated using single-locus mtDNA data are best viewed as OTUs that require validation by subsequent integrative taxonomic work. PMID:25849083

  4. Physiological Monitoring in Diving Mammals

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-09-30

    complex relationship between ocean noise, bubble injury and marine mammal strandings (http://www.awionline.org/ oceans /Noise/IONC/index.htm). During...first year, testing began using a fiber optic approach. Deoxygenated blood at various dilutions was used to test that the response was linear over the

  5. 75 FR 76399 - Marine Mammals

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-12-08

    ... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XK54 Marine Mammals AGENCY: National Marine... Williams, Long Marine Lab, Institute of Marine Sciences, University of California at Santa Cruz, 100...: The subject amendment to Permit No. 13602 was requested under the authority of the Marine...

  6. SMALL MAMMAL USE OF MICROHABITAT REVIEWED

    EPA Science Inventory

    Small mammal microhabitat research has greatly influenced vertebrate community ecologists. There exists a "microhabitat paradigm" that states that sympatry among small mammal species is enabled by differential use of microhabitat (i.e., microhabitat partitioning). However, seve...

  7. Ocean Basin Impact of Ambient Noise on Marine Mammal Detectability, Distribution, and Acoustic Communication

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-07-06

    Technical Report 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE Ocean Basin Impact of Ambient Noise on Marine Mammal Distribution, and Acoustic Communication 3. DATES...ultimate goal of this research is to enhance the understanding of global ocean noise and how variability in sound level impacts marine mammal acoustic...it relates to marine mammal active acoustic space and acoustic communication. This work increases the spatial range and time scale of prior

  8. A multi-taxon approach reveals the effect of management intensity on biodiversity in Alpine larch grasslands.

    PubMed

    Nascimbene, Juri; Fontana, Veronika; Spitale, Daniel

    2014-07-15

    In the Alps, larch grasslands form one of the most pleasing aspects of the landscape. However, their effectiveness in contributing to biodiversity conservation may depend on the intensity of their management. We used a multi-taxon approach to evaluate the effects of the intensification of management practices and those of abandonment on the biodiversity of the main autotrophic organisms hosted in this habitat, including vascular plants, bryophytes, and lichens. The study was carried out in the eastern part of South Tyrol, in the Italian Alps, where the diversity patterns of these three organismal groups were compared among intensively managed, extensively managed, and abandoned stands. The management intensity was found to strongly influence the biodiversity of the organisms, with a general pattern indicating the best conditions in extensively managed stands. Both abandonment and management intensification were detrimental to biodiversity through different mechanisms that led to species loss or to major shifts in species composition. However, the most negative effects were related to management intensification, mainly due to the high nitrogen supply, providing evidence for the increasing impact of eutrophication on Alpine environments.

  9. Sequence of the canine herpesvirus thymidine kinase gene: taxon-preferred amino acid residues in the alphaherpesviral thymidine kinases.

    PubMed

    Rémond, M; Sheldrick, P; Lebreton, F; Foulon, T

    1995-12-01

    Multiple sequence alignments of evolutionarily related proteins are finding increasing use as indicators of critical amino acid residues necessary for structural stability or involved in functional domains responsible for catalytic activities. In the past, a number of alignments have provided such information for the herpesviral thymidine kinases, for which three-dimensional structures are not yet available. We have sequenced the thymidine kinase gene of a canine herpesvirus, and with a multiple alignment have identified amino acids preferentially conserved in either of two taxons, the genera Varicellovirus and Simplexvirus, of the subfamily Alphaherpesvirinae. Since some regions of the thymidine kinases show otherwise elevated levels of substitutional tolerance, these conserved amino acids are candidates for critical residues which have become fixed through selection during the evolutionary divergence of these enzymes. Several pairs with distinctive patterns of distribution among the various viruses occur in or near highly conserved sequence motifs previously proposed to form the catalytic site, and we speculate that they may represent interacting, co-ordinately variable residues.

  10. Hydrodynamic Flow Control in Marine Mammals

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2008-05-06

    Hydrodynamic flow control in marine mammals Frank E. Fish,1,* Laurens E. Howle† and Mark M. Murray§ Department of Biology, West Chester University...the flow of water around the body dictates the performance of marine mammals in the aquatic environment. Morphological specializations of marine mammals ...and maneuverability. The morphological features of marine mammals for flow control can be utilized in the biomimetic design of engineered structures

  11. First cranial remains of a gondwanatherian mammal reveal remarkable mosaicism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Krause, David W.; Hoffmann, Simone; Wible, John R.; Kirk, E. Christopher; Schultz, Julia A.; von Koenigswald, Wighart; Groenke, Joseph R.; Rossie, James B.; O'Connor, Patrick M.; Seiffert, Erik R.; Dumont, Elizabeth R.; Holloway, Waymon L.; Rogers, Raymond R.; Rahantarisoa, Lydia J.; Kemp, Addison D.; Andriamialison, Haingoson

    2014-11-01

    Previously known only from isolated teeth and lower jaw fragments recovered from the Cretaceous and Palaeogene of the Southern Hemisphere, the Gondwanatheria constitute the most poorly known of all major mammaliaform radiations. Here we report the discovery of the first skull material of a gondwanatherian, a complete and well-preserved cranium from Upper Cretaceous strata in Madagascar that we assign to a new genus and species. Phylogenetic analysis strongly supports its placement within Gondwanatheria, which are recognized as monophyletic and closely related to multituberculates, an evolutionarily successful clade of Mesozoic mammals known almost exclusively from the Northern Hemisphere. The new taxon is the largest known mammaliaform from the Mesozoic of Gondwana. Its craniofacial anatomy reveals that it was herbivorous, large-eyed and agile, with well-developed high-frequency hearing and a keen sense of smell. The cranium exhibits a mosaic of primitive and derived features, the disparity of which is extreme and probably reflective of a long evolutionary history in geographic isolation.

  12. An environmental bacterial taxon with a large and distinct metabolic repertoire.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Micheal C; Mori, Tetsushi; Rückert, Christian; Uria, Agustinus R; Helf, Maximilian J; Takada, Kentaro; Gernert, Christine; Steffens, Ursula A E; Heycke, Nina; Schmitt, Susanne; Rinke, Christian; Helfrich, Eric J N; Brachmann, Alexander O; Gurgui, Cristian; Wakimoto, Toshiyuki; Kracht, Matthias; Crüsemann, Max; Hentschel, Ute; Abe, Ikuro; Matsunaga, Shigeki; Kalinowski, Jörn; Takeyama, Haruko; Piel, Jörn

    2014-02-06

    Cultivated bacteria such as actinomycetes are a highly useful source of biomedically important natural products. However, such 'talented' producers represent only a minute fraction of the entire, mostly uncultivated, prokaryotic diversity. The uncultured majority is generally perceived as a large, untapped resource of new drug candidates, but so far it is unknown whether taxa containing talented bacteria indeed exist. Here we report the single-cell- and metagenomics-based discovery of such producers. Two phylotypes of the candidate genus 'Entotheonella' with genomes of greater than 9 megabases and multiple, distinct biosynthetic gene clusters co-inhabit the chemically and microbially rich marine sponge Theonella swinhoei. Almost all bioactive polyketides and peptides known from this animal were attributed to a single phylotype. 'Entotheonella' spp. are widely distributed in sponges and belong to an environmental taxon proposed here as candidate phylum 'Tectomicrobia'. The pronounced bioactivities and chemical uniqueness of 'Entotheonella' compounds provide significant opportunities for ecological studies and drug discovery.

  13. 'Candidatus Phytoplasma hispanicum', a novel taxon associated with Mexican periwinkle virescence disease of Catharanthus roseus.

    PubMed

    Davis, Robert E; Harrison, Nigel A; Zhao, Yan; Wei, Wei; Dally, Ellen L

    2016-09-01

    Mexican periwinkle virescence (MPV) phytoplasma was originally discovered in diseased plants of Madagascar periwinkle (Catharanthus roseus) in Yucatán, Mexico. On the basis of results from RFLP analysis of PCR-amplified 16S rRNA gene sequences, strain MPV was previously classified as the first known member of phytoplasma group 16SrXIII, and a new subgroup (16SrXIII-A) was established to accommodate MPV phytoplasma. Phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA gene sequences indicated that strain MPV represents a lineage distinct from previously described 'CandidatusPhytoplasma' species. Nucleotide sequence alignments revealed that strain MPV shared less than 97.5 % 16S rRNA gene sequence similarity with all previously described 'Ca.Phytoplasma' species. Based on unique properties of the DNA, we propose recognition of Mexican periwinkle virescence phytoplasma strain MPV as representative of a novel taxon, 'CandidatusPhytoplasma hispanicum'.

  14. Age-related increase of reactive oxygen generation in the brains of mammals and birds: is reactive oxygen a signaling molecule to determine the aging process and life span?

    PubMed

    Sasaki, Toru; Unno, Keiko; Tahara, Shoichi; Kaneko, Takao

    2010-07-01

    Since Harman proposed the "free-radical theory of aging", oxidative stress has been postulated to be a major causal factor of senescence. The accumulation of oxidative stress-induced oxidatively modified macromolecules, including protein, DNA and lipid, were found in tissues during the aging process; however, it is not necessarily clear which factor is more critical, an increase in endogenous reactive oxygen and/or a decrease in anti-oxidative defense, to the age-related increase in oxidative damage. To clarify the increasing production of reactive oxygen with age, we examined reactive oxygen-dependent chemiluminescent (CL) signals in ex vivo brain slices prepared from different-aged animal brains during hypoxia-reoxygenation treatment using a novel photonic imaging method. The CL signal was intensified during reoxygenation. The signals in SAMP10 (short-life strain) and SAMR1 (control) brain slices increased with aging. The slope of the increase of CL intensity with age in P10 was steeper than in R1. Age-dependent increase of CL intensity was also observed in C57BL/6 mice, Wistar rats and pigeons; however, superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity in the brain did not change with age. These results suggest that reactive oxygen production itself increased with aging. The rate of age-related increases of CL intensity was inversely related to the maximum lifespan of animals. We speculate that reactive oxygen might be a signaling molecule and its levels in tissue might determine the aging process and lifespan. Decelerating age-related increases of reactive oxygen production are expected to be a potent strategy for anti-aging interventions.

  15. Macrochaete gen. nov. (Nostocales, Cyanobacteria), a taxon morphologically and molecularly distinct from Calothrix.

    PubMed

    Berrendero Gómez, Esther; Johansen, Jeffrey R; Kaštovský, Jan; Bohunická, Markéta; Čapková, Kateřina

    2016-08-01

    Historically, the genus Calothrix included all noncolonial, tapered, heterocytous filaments within the cyanobacteria. However, recent molecular phylogenies show that "Calothrix" defined in this sense represents five distinct clades. The type species of Calothrix is marine, with solitary basal heterocytes, no akinetes, and distal ends tapering abruptly into short hairs. We examined the morphology and phylogeny of 45 tapering cyanobacteria in the Rivulariaceae, including freshwater and marine representatives of both Calothrix (35 strains) and its sister taxon Rivularia (10 strains). The marine Calothrix fall into two lineages, but we lack the generitype and so cannot identify the clade corresponding to the type species. The freshwater and soil Calothrix fall into the C. parietina clade and are characterized by having a basal heterocyte, no akinetes, and gradual tapering-but not into a long hyaline hair. Macrochaete gen. nov. is a freshwater taxon sister to the Calothrix lineages but clearly separated from Rivularia. The species in this genus differ morphologically from Calothrix by their ability to produce two heteromorphic basal heterocytes and specific secondary structures of the 16S-23S ITS. An additional feature present in most species is the presence of a distal, long hyaline hair, but this character has incomplete penetrance due to its expression only under specific environmental conditions (low phosphate), and in one species appears to be lost. We recognize three species: M. psychrophila (type species) from cold environments (high mountains, Antarctica), M. santannae from wet walls of subtropical South America, and M. lichenoides, a phycobiont of lichens from Europe.

  16. Development of taxon-specific sequences of common wheat for the detection of genetically modified wheat.

    PubMed

    Iida, Mayu; Yamashiro, Satomi; Yamakawa, Hirohito; Hayakawa, Katsuyuki; Kuribara, Hideo; Kodama, Takashi; Furui, Satoshi; Akiyama, Hiroshi; Maitani, Tamio; Hino, Akihiro

    2005-08-10

    Qualitative and quantitative Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) systems aimed at the specific detection and quantification of common wheat DNA are described. Many countries have issued regulations to label foods that include genetically modified organisms (GMOs). PCR technology is widely recognized as a reliable and useful technique for the qualitative and quantitative detection of GMOs. Detection methods are needed to amplify a target GM gene, and the amplified results should be compared with those of the corresponding taxon-specific reference gene to obtain reliable results. This paper describes the development of a specific DNA sequence in the waxy-D1 gene for common wheat (Triticum aestivum L.) and the design of a specific primer pair and TaqMan probe on the waxy-D1 gene for PCR analysis. The primers amplified a product (Wx012) of 102 bp. It is indicated that the Wx012 DNA sequence is specific to common wheat, showing homogeneity in qualitative PCR results and very similar quantification accuracy along 19 distantly related common wheat varieties. In Southern blot and real-time PCR analyses, this sequence showed either a single or a low number of copy genes. In addition, by qualitative and quantitative PCR using wx012 primers and a wx012-T probe, the limits of detection of the common wheat genome were found to be about 15 copies, and the reproducibility was reliable. In consequence, the PCR system using wx012 primers and wx012-T probe is considered to be suitable for use as a common wheat-specific taxon-specific reference gene in DNA analyses, including GMO tests.

  17. On the Complexity of the Saccharomyces bayanus Taxon: Hybridization and Potential Hybrid Speciation

    PubMed Central

    Pérez-Través, Laura; Lopes, Christian A.; Querol, Amparo; Barrio, Eladio

    2014-01-01

    Although the genus Saccharomyces has been thoroughly studied, some species in the genus has not yet been accurately resolved; an example is S. bayanus, a taxon that includes genetically diverse lineages of pure and hybrid strains. This diversity makes the assignation and classification of strains belonging to this species unclear and controversial. They have been subdivided by some authors into two varieties (bayanus and uvarum), which have been raised to the species level by others. In this work, we evaluate the complexity of 46 different strains included in the S. bayanus taxon by means of PCR-RFLP analysis and by sequencing of 34 gene regions and one mitochondrial gene. Using the sequence data, and based on the S. bayanus var. bayanus reference strain NBRC 1948, a hypothetical pure S. bayanus was reconstructed for these genes that showed alleles with similarity values lower than 97% with the S. bayanus var. uvarum strain CBS 7001, and of 99–100% with the non S. cerevisiae portion in S. pastorianus Weihenstephan 34/70 and with the new species S. eubayanus. Among the S. bayanus strains under study, different levels of homozygosity, hybridization and introgression were found; however, no pure S. bayanus var. bayanus strain was identified. These S. bayanus hybrids can be classified into two types: homozygous (type I) and heterozygous hybrids (type II), indicating that they have been originated by different hybridization processes. Therefore, a putative evolutionary scenario involving two different hybridization events between a S. bayanus var. uvarum and unknown European S. eubayanus-like strains can be postulated to explain the genomic diversity observed in our S. bayanus var. bayanus strains. PMID:24705561

  18. On the complexity of the Saccharomyces bayanus taxon: hybridization and potential hybrid speciation.

    PubMed

    Pérez-Través, Laura; Lopes, Christian A; Querol, Amparo; Barrio, Eladio

    2014-01-01

    Although the genus Saccharomyces has been thoroughly studied, some species in the genus has not yet been accurately resolved; an example is S. bayanus, a taxon that includes genetically diverse lineages of pure and hybrid strains. This diversity makes the assignation and classification of strains belonging to this species unclear and controversial. They have been subdivided by some authors into two varieties (bayanus and uvarum), which have been raised to the species level by others. In this work, we evaluate the complexity of 46 different strains included in the S. bayanus taxon by means of PCR-RFLP analysis and by sequencing of 34 gene regions and one mitochondrial gene. Using the sequence data, and based on the S. bayanus var. bayanus reference strain NBRC 1948, a hypothetical pure S. bayanus was reconstructed for these genes that showed alleles with similarity values lower than 97% with the S. bayanus var. uvarum strain CBS 7001, and of 99-100% with the non S. cerevisiae portion in S. pastorianus Weihenstephan 34/70 and with the new species S. eubayanus. Among the S. bayanus strains under study, different levels of homozygosity, hybridization and introgression were found; however, no pure S. bayanus var. bayanus strain was identified. These S. bayanus hybrids can be classified into two types: homozygous (type I) and heterozygous hybrids (type II), indicating that they have been originated by different hybridization processes. Therefore, a putative evolutionary scenario involving two different hybridization events between a S. bayanus var. uvarum and unknown European S. eubayanus-like strains can be postulated to explain the genomic diversity observed in our S. bayanus var. bayanus strains.

  19. Taxon interactions control the distributions of cryoconite bacteria colonizing a High Arctic ice cap.

    PubMed

    Gokul, Jarishma K; Hodson, Andrew J; Saetnan, Eli R; Irvine-Fynn, Tristram D L; Westall, Philippa J; Detheridge, Andrew P; Takeuchi, Nozomu; Bussell, Jennifer; Mur, Luis A J; Edwards, Arwyn

    2016-08-01

    Microbial colonization of glacial ice surfaces incurs feedbacks which affect the melting rate of the ice surface. Ecosystems formed as microbe-mineral aggregates termed cryoconite locally reduce ice surface albedo and represent foci of biodiversity and biogeochemical cycling. Consequently, greater understanding the ecological processes in the formation of functional cryoconite ecosystems upon glacier surfaces is sought. Here, we present the first bacterial biogeography of an ice cap, evaluating the respective roles of dispersal, environmental and biotic filtration occurring at local scales in the assembly of cryoconite microbiota. 16S rRNA gene amplicon semiconductor sequencing of cryoconite colonizing a Svalbard ice cap coupled with digital elevation modelling of physical parameters reveals the bacterial community is dominated by a ubiquitous core of generalist taxa, with evidence for a moderate pairwise distance-decay relationship. While geographic position and melt season duration are prominent among environmental predictors of community structure, the core population of taxa appears highly influential in structuring the bacterial community. Taxon co-occurrence network analysis reveals a highly modular community structured by positive interactions with bottleneck taxa, predominantly Actinobacteria affiliated to isolates from soil humus. In contrast, the filamentous cyanobacterial taxon (assigned to Leptolyngbya/Phormidesmis pristleyi) which dominates the community and binds together granular cryoconite are poorly connected to other taxa. While our study targeted one ice cap, the prominent role of generalist core taxa with close environmental relatives across the global cryosphere indicate discrete roles for cosmopolitan Actinobacteria and Cyanobacteria as respective keystone taxa and ecosystem engineers of cryoconite ecosystems colonizing ice caps.

  20. Morbillivirus infections in aquatic mammals.

    PubMed

    Visser, I K; van Bressem, M F; Barrett, T; Osterhaus, A D

    1993-01-01

    Infections with morbilliviruses have caused heavy losses among different populations of aquatic mammals during the last 5 years. Two different morbilliviruses were isolated from disease outbreaks among seals in Europe and Siberia: phocid distemper virus-1 (PDV-1) and phocid distemper virus-2 (PDV-2) respectively. PDV-1 was characterized as a newly identified morbillivirus, most related to canine distemper virus (CDV), whereas PDV-2 most probably is a strain of CDV. Morbilliviruses were also isolated from porpoises--porpoise morbillivirus (PMV)--and dolphins--dolphin morbillivirus (DMV)--which had stranded on the coasts of Europe. PMV and DMV proved to be closely related to, but distinct from 2 ruminant morbilliviruses, rinderpest virus (RPV) and peste-des-petits-ruminants virus (PPRV). Serological surveys carried out among pinniped and cetacean species in the seas of Europe and North America indicated that infections with these newly discovered morbilliviruses or closely related viruses commonly occur among aquatic mammal species.

  1. Metabolism and toxicity of arsenicals in mammals.

    PubMed

    Sattar, Adeel; Xie, Shuyu; Hafeez, Mian Abdul; Wang, Xu; Hussain, Hafiz Iftikhar; Iqbal, Zahid; Pan, Yuanhu; Iqbal, Mujahid; Shabbir, Muhammad Abubakr; Yuan, Zonghui

    2016-12-01

    Arsenic (As) is a metalloid usually found in organic and inorganic forms with different oxidation states, while inorganic form (arsenite As-III and arsenate As-v) is considered to be more hazardous as compared to organic form (methylarsonate and dimethylarsinate), with mild or no toxicity in mammals. Due to an increasing trend to using arsenicals as growth promoters or for treatment purposes, the understanding of metabolism and toxicity of As gets vital importance. Its toxicity is mainly depends on oxi-reduction states (As-III or As-v) and the level of methylation during the metabolism process. Currently, the exact metabolic pathways of As have yet to be confirmed in humans and food producing animals. Oxidative methylation and glutathione conjugation is believed to be major pathways of As metabolism. Oxidative methylation is based on conversion of Arsenite in to mono-methylarsonic acid and di-methylarsenic acid in mammals. It has been confirmed that As is only methylated in the presence of glutathione or thiol compounds, suggesting that As is being methylated in trivalent states. Subsequently, non-conjugated trivalent arsenicals are highly reactive with thiol which converts the trivalent arsenicals in to less toxic pentavalent forms. The glutathione conjugate stability of As is the most important factor for determining the toxicity. It can lead to DNA damage by alerting enzyme profile and production of reactive oxygen and nitrogen species which causes the oxidative stress. Moreover, As causes immune-dysfunction by hindering cellular and humeral immune response. The present review discussed different metabolic pathways and toxic outcomes of arsenicals in mammals which will be helpful in health risk assessment and its impact on biological world.

  2. Sexual Selection of Protamine 1 in Mammals.

    PubMed

    Lüke, Lena; Tourmente, Maximiliano; Roldan, Eduardo R S

    2016-01-01

    Protamines have a crucial role in male fertility. They are involved in sperm chromatin packaging and influence the shape of the sperm head and, hence, are important for sperm performance. Protamine structure is basic with numerous arginine-rich DNA-binding domains. Postcopulatory sexual selection is thought to play an important role in protamine sequence evolution and expression. Here, we analyze patterns of evolution and sexual selection (in the form of sperm competition) acting on protamine 1 gene sequence in 237 mammalian species. We assessed common patterns as well as differences between the major mammalian subclasses (Eutheria, Metatheria) and clades. We found that a high arginine content in protamine 1 associates with a lower sperm head width, which may have an impact on sperm swimming velocity. Increase in arginine content in protamine 1 across mammals appears to take place in a way consistent with sexual selection. In metatherians, increase in sequence length correlates with sexual selection. Differences in selective pressures on sequences and codon sites were observed between mammalian clades. Our study revealed a complex evolutionary pattern of protamine 1, with different selective constraints, and effects of sexual selection, between mammalian groups. In contrast, the effect of arginine content on head shape, and the possible involvement of sperm competition, was identified across all mammals.

  3. Physiological Monitoring in Diving Mammals

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-09-30

    Fahlman Department of Life Sciences Texas A&M- Corpus Christi 6300 Ocean Dr Unit 5892 Corpus Christi, TX 78412 phone: (361) 825-3489 fax: (361...825-2025 email: andreas.fahlman@tamucc.edu Peter L. Tyack School of Biology, Sea Mammal Research Unit Scottish Oceans Institute University...Sciences Texas A&M- Corpus Christi 6300 Ocean Dr Unit 5892 Corpus Christi, TX 78412 8. PERFORMING ORGANIZATION REPORT NUMBER 9. SPONSORING/MONITORING

  4. Physiological Monitoring in Diving Mammals

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-09-30

    and Marine and Ocean Science 16. SECURITY CLASSIFICATION OF: a. REPORT b. ABSTRACT c. THIS PAGE 17. LIMITATION OF ABSTRACT 18. NUMBER OF PAGES... ocean noise, bubble injury and marine mammal strandings (http://www.awionline.org/ oceans /Noise/IONC/index.htm). During a workshop held in Baltimore...fiber optic approach. Deoxygenated blood at various dilutions was used to test that the response was linear over the physiological range. y= 00957K

  5. Lung Mechanics in Marine Mammals

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-09-30

    lung mechanics in vivo during spontaneous breathing (dynamic) and mechanical ventilation (static), and the static compliance of the excised lung after...to depth. Physiological Zoology, 1982. 55(1): p. 105-111. 6. Fahlman, A., et al., Estimating the effect of lung collapse and pulmonary shunt on gas...1 DISTRIBUTION STATEMENT A. Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. Lung Mechanics in Marine Mammals Andreas Fahlman

  6. Problems with the claim of ecotype and taxon status of the wolf in the Great Lakes region

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cronin, Matthew A.; Mech, L. David

    2009-01-01

    Koblmuller et al. (2009) analysed molecular genetic data of the wolf in the Great Lakes (GL) region of the USA and concluded that the animal was a unique ecotype of grey wolf and that genetic data supported the population as a discrete wolf taxon. However, some of the literature that the researchers used to support their position actually did not, and additional confusion arises from indefinite use of terminology. Herein, we discuss the problems with designation of a wolf population as a taxon or ecotype without proper definition and assessment of criteria.

  7. Dietary characterization of terrestrial mammals

    PubMed Central

    Pineda-Munoz, Silvia; Alroy, John

    2014-01-01

    Understanding the feeding behaviour of the species that make up any ecosystem is essential for designing further research. Mammals have been studied intensively, but the criteria used for classifying their diets are far from being standardized. We built a database summarizing the dietary preferences of terrestrial mammals using published data regarding their stomach contents. We performed multivariate analyses in order to set up a standardized classification scheme. Ideally, food consumption percentages should be used instead of qualitative classifications. However, when highly detailed information is not available we propose classifying animals based on their main feeding resources. They should be classified as generalists when none of the feeding resources constitute over 50% of the diet. The term ‘omnivore’ should be avoided because it does not communicate all the complexity inherent to food choice. Moreover, the so-called omnivore diets actually involve several distinctive adaptations. Our dataset shows that terrestrial mammals are generally highly specialized and that some degree of food mixing may even be required for most species. PMID:25009067

  8. New molecular phylogeny of Lucinidae: increased taxon base with focus on tropical Western Atlantic species (Mollusca: Bivalvia).

    PubMed

    Taylor, John D; Glover, Emily A; Smith, Lisa; Ikebe, Chiho; Williams, Suzanne T

    2016-11-23

    A new molecular phylogeny of the Lucinidae using 18S and 28S rRNA and cytochrome b genes includes many species from the tropical Western Atlantic as well as additional taxa from the Indo-West Pacific. This study provides a phylogenetic framework for a new taxonomy of tropical Western Atlantic lucinids. The analysis confirmed five major clades-Pegophyseminae, Leucosphaerinae, Myrteinae, Codakiinae and Lucininae, with Monitilorinae and Fimbriinae represented by single species. The Leucosphaerinae are expanded and include Callucina winckworthi and the W. Atlantic Myrtina pristiphora that groups with several Indo-West Pacific Myrtina species. Within the Codakiinae two abundant species of Ctena from the Western Atlantic with similar shells are discriminated as C. orbiculata and C. imbricatula, while in the Indo-West Pacific Ctena bella is a probable species complex. The Lucininae is the most species rich and disparate subfamily with several subclades apparent. Three species of Lucina are recognized in the W. Atlantic L. aurantia, L. pensylvanica and L. roquesana. Pleurolucina groups near to Cavilinga and Lucina, while Lucinisca muricata is more closely related to the E. Pacific L. fenestrata than to the Atlantic L. nassula. A new species of Parvilucina is identified from molecular analyses having been confounded with Parvilucina pectinata but differs in ligament structure. Also, the former Parvilucina clenchi is more distant and assigned to Guyanella.

  9. The nocturnal bottleneck and the evolution of activity patterns in mammals

    PubMed Central

    Gerkema, Menno P.; Davies, Wayne I. L.; Foster, Russell G.; Menaker, Michael; Hut, Roelof A.

    2013-01-01

    In 1942, Walls described the concept of a ‘nocturnal bottleneck’ in placental mammals, where these species could survive only by avoiding daytime activity during times in which dinosaurs were the dominant taxon. Walls based this concept of a longer episode of nocturnality in early eutherian mammals by comparing the visual systems of reptiles, birds and all three extant taxa of the mammalian lineage, namely the monotremes, marsupials (now included in the metatherians) and placentals (included in the eutherians). This review describes the status of what has become known as the nocturnal bottleneck hypothesis, giving an overview of the chronobiological patterns of activity. We review the ecological plausibility that the activity patterns of (early) eutherian mammals were restricted to the night, based on arguments relating to endothermia, energy balance, foraging and predation, taking into account recent palaeontological information. We also assess genes, relating to light detection (visual and non-visual systems) and the photolyase DNA protection system that were lost in the eutherian mammalian lineage. Our conclusion presently is that arguments in favour of the nocturnal bottleneck hypothesis in eutherians prevail. PMID:23825205

  10. Using genomic data to unravel the root of the placental mammal phylogeny

    PubMed Central

    Murphy, William J.; Pringle, Thomas H.; Crider, Tess A.; Springer, Mark S.; Miller, Webb

    2007-01-01

    The phylogeny of placental mammals is a critical framework for choosing future genome sequencing targets and for resolving the ancestral mammalian genome at the nucleotide level. Despite considerable recent progress defining superordinal relationships, several branches remain poorly resolved, including the root of the placental tree. Here we analyzed the genome sequence assemblies of human, armadillo, elephant, and opossum to identify informative coding indels that would serve as rare genomic changes to infer early events in placental mammal phylogeny. We also expanded our species sampling by including sequence data from >30 ongoing genome projects, followed by PCR and sequencing validation of each indel in additional taxa. Our data provide support for a sister-group relationship between Afrotheria and Xenarthra (the Atlantogenata hypothesis), which is in turn the sister-taxon to Boreoeutheria. We failed to recover any indels in support of a basal position for Xenarthra (Epitheria), which is suggested by morphology and a recent retroposon analysis, or a hypothesis with Afrotheria basal (Exafricoplacentalia), which is favored by phylogenetic analysis of large nuclear gene data sets. In addition, we identified two retroposon insertions that also support Atlantogenata and none for the alternative hypotheses. A revised molecular timescale based on these phylogenetic inferences suggests Afrotheria and Xenarthra diverged from other placental mammals ∼103 (95–114) million years ago. We discuss the impacts of this topology on earlier phylogenetic reconstructions and repeat-based inferences of phylogeny. PMID:17322288

  11. The nocturnal bottleneck and the evolution of activity patterns in mammals.

    PubMed

    Gerkema, Menno P; Davies, Wayne I L; Foster, Russell G; Menaker, Michael; Hut, Roelof A

    2013-08-22

    In 1942, Walls described the concept of a 'nocturnal bottleneck' in placental mammals, where these species could survive only by avoiding daytime activity during times in which dinosaurs were the dominant taxon. Walls based this concept of a longer episode of nocturnality in early eutherian mammals by comparing the visual systems of reptiles, birds and all three extant taxa of the mammalian lineage, namely the monotremes, marsupials (now included in the metatherians) and placentals (included in the eutherians). This review describes the status of what has become known as the nocturnal bottleneck hypothesis, giving an overview of the chronobiological patterns of activity. We review the ecological plausibility that the activity patterns of (early) eutherian mammals were restricted to the night, based on arguments relating to endothermia, energy balance, foraging and predation, taking into account recent palaeontological information. We also assess genes, relating to light detection (visual and non-visual systems) and the photolyase DNA protection system that were lost in the eutherian mammalian lineage. Our conclusion presently is that arguments in favour of the nocturnal bottleneck hypothesis in eutherians prevail.

  12. Introduced species: domestic mammals are more significant transmitters of parasites to native mammals than are feral mammals.

    PubMed

    Landaeta-Aqueveque, Carlos; Henríquez, Analía; Cattan, Pedro E

    2014-03-01

    The study of parasitism related to biological invasion has focused on attributes and impacts of parasites as invaders and the impact of introduced hosts on endemic parasitism. Thus, there is currently no study of the attributes of hosts which influence the invasiveness of parasites. We aimed to determine whether the degree of domestication of introduced mammalian species - feral introduced mammals, livestock or pets, hereafter 'D' - is important in the spillover of introduced parasites. The literature on introduced parasites of mammals in Chile was reviewed. We designed an index for estimating the relevance of the introduced host species to parasite spillover and determined whether the D of introduced mammals predicted this index. A total of 223 introduced parasite species were found. Our results indicate that domestic mammals have a higher number of introduced parasites and spillover parasites, and the index indicates that these mammals, particularly pets, are more relevant introducers than introduced feral mammals. Further analyses indicated that the higher impact is due to higher parasite richness, a longer time since introduction and wider dispersal, as well as how these mammals are maintained. The greater relevance of domestic mammals is important given that they are basically the same species distributed worldwide and can become the main transmitters of parasites to native mammals elsewhere. This finding also underlines the feasibility of management in order to reduce the transmission of parasites to native fauna through anti-parasitic treatment of domestic mammals, animal-ownership education and the prevention of importing new parasite species.

  13. Checklist of helminths found in Patagonian wild mammals.

    PubMed

    Fugassa, Martin H

    2015-09-03

    Using available reports, a checklist of the recorded helminth parasites of wild mammals from Patagonia was generated. Records of parasites found in Patagonia were included, together with records from mammals in áreas outside of Patagonia but whose range extends into Patagonia. Information about the host, localities, and references were also included. A total of 1323 records (224 Cestoda, 167 Trematoda, 894 Nematoda, 34 Acanthocephala, and 4 Pentastomida) belonging to 452 helminth species (77 Cestoda, 76 Trematoda, 277 Nematoda, 21 Acanthocephala, and 1 Pentastomida) found in 57 native mammals (22 Rodentia, 4 Didelphimorphia 1 Microbiotheria, 7 Chiroptera, 5 Cingulata, and 13 Carnivora) were listed. However, only 10.6 % of the reports were conducted on samples from Patagonia and corresponded to 25% of mammals in the region. In addition, many studies were made on a few species and, for example, 52% corresponded to studies made on Lama guanicoe. This suggests the need to increase efforts to know the parasitic fauna in a peculiar region as is the Patagonia. This is the first compilation of the helminth parasites of mammals in Argentine Patagonia and is important for parasitological and paleoparasitological studies.

  14. Multiple continental radiations and correlates of diversification in Lupinus (Leguminosae): testing for key innovation with incomplete taxon sampling.

    PubMed

    Drummond, Christopher S; Eastwood, Ruth J; Miotto, Silvia T S; Hughes, Colin E

    2012-05-01

    Replicate radiations provide powerful comparative systems to address questions about the interplay between opportunity and innovation in driving episodes of diversification and the factors limiting their subsequent progression. However, such systems have been rarely documented at intercontinental scales. Here, we evaluate the hypothesis of multiple radiations in the genus Lupinus (Leguminosae), which exhibits some of the highest known rates of net diversification in plants. Given that incomplete taxon sampling, background extinction, and lineage-specific variation in diversification rates can confound macroevolutionary inferences regarding the timing and mechanisms of cladogenesis, we used Bayesian relaxed clock phylogenetic analyses as well as MEDUSA and BiSSE birth-death likelihood models of diversification, to evaluate the evolutionary patterns of lineage accumulation in Lupinus. We identified 3 significant shifts to increased rates of net diversification (r) relative to background levels in the genus (r = 0.18-0.48 lineages/myr). The primary shift occurred approximately 4.6 Ma (r = 0.48-1.76) in the montane regions of western North America, followed by a secondary shift approximately 2.7 Ma (r = 0.89-3.33) associated with range expansion and diversification of allopatrically distributed sister clades in the Mexican highlands and Andes. We also recovered evidence for a third independent shift approximately 6.5 Ma at the base of a lower elevation eastern South American grassland and campo rupestre clade (r = 0.36-1.33). Bayesian ancestral state reconstructions and BiSSE likelihood analyses of correlated diversification indicated that increased rates of speciation are strongly associated with the derived evolution of perennial life history and invasion of montane ecosystems. Although we currently lack hard evidence for "replicate adaptive radiations" in the sense of convergent morphological and ecological trajectories among species in different clades, these

  15. The evolution of maximum body size of terrestrial mammals.

    PubMed

    Smith, Felisa A; Boyer, Alison G; Brown, James H; Costa, Daniel P; Dayan, Tamar; Ernest, S K Morgan; Evans, Alistair R; Fortelius, Mikael; Gittleman, John L; Hamilton, Marcus J; Harding, Larisa E; Lintulaakso, Kari; Lyons, S Kathleen; McCain, Christy; Okie, Jordan G; Saarinen, Juha J; Sibly, Richard M; Stephens, Patrick R; Theodor, Jessica; Uhen, Mark D

    2010-11-26

    The extinction of dinosaurs at the Cretaceous/Paleogene (K/Pg) boundary was the seminal event that opened the door for the subsequent diversification of terrestrial mammals. Our compilation of maximum body size at the ordinal level by sub-epoch shows a near-exponential increase after the K/Pg. On each continent, the maximum size of mammals leveled off after 40 million years ago and thereafter remained approximately constant. There was remarkable congruence in the rate, trajectory, and upper limit across continents, orders, and trophic guilds, despite differences in geological and climatic history, turnover of lineages, and ecological variation. Our analysis suggests that although the primary driver for the evolution of giant mammals was diversification to fill ecological niches, environmental temperature and land area may have ultimately constrained the maximum size achieved.

  16. The Marine Mammal Protection Act at 40: status, recovery, and future of U.S. marine mammals.

    PubMed

    Roman, Joe; Altman, Irit; Dunphy-Daly, Meagan M; Campbell, Caitlin; Jasny, Michael; Read, Andrew J

    2013-05-01

    Passed in 1972, the Marine Mammal Protection Act has two fundamental objectives: to maintain U.S. marine mammal stocks at their optimum sustainable populations and to uphold their ecological role in the ocean. The current status of many marine mammal populations is considerably better than in 1972. Take reduction plans have been largely successful in reducing direct fisheries bycatch, although they have not been prepared for all at-risk stocks, and fisheries continue to place marine mammals as risk. Information on population trends is unknown for most (71%) stocks; more stocks with known trends are improving than declining: 19% increasing, 5% stable, and 5% decreasing. Challenges remain, however, and the act has generally been ineffective in treating indirect impacts, such as noise, disease, and prey depletion. Existing conservation measures have not protected large whales from fisheries interactions or ship strikes in the northwestern Atlantic. Despite these limitations, marine mammals within the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone appear to be faring better than those outside, with fewer species in at-risk categories and more of least concern.

  17. Effects of climate change on Arctic marine mammal health.

    PubMed

    Burek, Kathy A; Gulland, Frances M D; O'Hara, Todd M

    2008-03-01

    The lack of integrated long-term data on health, diseases, and toxicant effects in Arctic marine mammals severely limits our ability to predict the effects of climate change on marine mammal health. The overall health of an individual animal is the result of complex interactions among immune status, body condition, pathogens and their pathogenicity, toxicant exposure, and the various environmental conditions that interact with these factors. Climate change could affect these interactions in several ways. There may be direct effects of loss of the sea ice habitat, elevations of water and air temperature, and increased occurrence of severe weather. Some of the indirect effects of climate change on animal health will likely include alterations in pathogen transmission due to a variety of factors, effects on body condition due to shifts in the prey base/food web, changes in toxicant exposures, and factors associated with increased human habitation in the Arctic (e.g., chemical and pathogen pollution in the runoff due to human and domestic-animal wastes and chemicals and increased ship traffic with the attendant increased risks of ship strike, oil spills, ballast pollution, and possibly acoustic injury). The extent to which climate change will impact marine mammal health will also vary among species, with some species more sensitive to these factors than others. Baseline data on marine mammal health parameters along with matched data on the population and climate change trends are needed to document these changes.

  18. Round table on morbilliviruses in marine mammals.

    PubMed

    Barrett, T; Blixenkrone-Møller, M; Domingo, M; Harder, T; Have, P; Liess, B; Orvell, C; Osterhaus, A D; Plana, J; Svansson, V

    1992-11-01

    Since 1988 morbilliviruses have been increasingly recognized and held responsible for mass mortality amongst harbour seals (Phoca vitulina) and other seal species. Virus isolations and characterization proved that morbilliviruses from seals in Northwest Europe were genetically distinct from other known members of this group including canine distemper virus (CDV), rinderpest virus, peste des petits ruminants virus and measles virus. An epidemic in Baikal seals in 1987 was apparently caused by a morbillivirus closely related to CDV so that two morbilliviruses have now been identified in two geographically distant seal populations, with only the group of isolates from Northwest Europe forming a new member of the genus morbillivirus: phocid distemper virus (PDV). Because of distemper-like disease, the Baikal seal morbillivirus was tentatively named PDV-2 in spite of its possible identity with CDV. The appearance of morbilliviruses in the Mediterranean Sea causing high mortality amongst dolphins should further increase the research activities on protection strategies for endangered species of marine mammals.

  19. Dental eruption in afrotherian mammals

    PubMed Central

    Asher, Robert J; Lehmann, Thomas

    2008-01-01

    Background Afrotheria comprises a newly recognized clade of mammals with strong molecular evidence for its monophyly. In contrast, morphological data uniting its diverse constituents, including elephants, sea cows, hyraxes, aardvarks, sengis, tenrecs and golden moles, have been difficult to identify. Here, we suggest relatively late eruption of the permanent dentition as a shared characteristic of afrotherian mammals. This characteristic and other features (such as vertebral anomalies and testicondy) recall the phenotype of a human genetic pathology (cleidocranial dysplasia), correlations with which have not been explored previously in the context of character evolution within the recently established phylogeny of living mammalian clades. Results Although data on the absolute timing of eruption in sengis, golden moles and tenrecs are still unknown, craniometric comparisons for ontogenetic series of these taxa show that considerable skull growth takes place prior to the complete eruption of the permanent cheek teeth. Specimens showing less than half (sengis, golden moles) or two-thirds (tenrecs, hyraxes) of their permanent cheek teeth reach or exceed the median jaw length of conspecifics with a complete dentition. With few exceptions, afrotherians are closer to median adult jaw length with fewer erupted, permanent cheek teeth than comparable stages of non-afrotherians. Manatees (but not dugongs), elephants and hyraxes with known age data show eruption of permanent teeth late in ontogeny relative to other mammals. While the occurrence of delayed eruption, vertebral anomalies and other potential afrotherian synapomorphies resemble some symptoms of a human genetic pathology, these characteristics do not appear to covary significantly among mammalian clades. Conclusion Morphological characteristics shared by such physically disparate animals such as elephants and golden moles are not easy to recognize, but are now known to include late eruption of permanent teeth, in

  20. Marine Mammals and Stress Workshop

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2012-09-30

    measuring indicators of stress, and 3) identify scientific or regional topics for future stress-related research involving marine mammals, including...concentrations vary by region of capture in free- ranging Steller sea lion pups”. Bechshoft, T., Sonne, C., Meyer, J.S., Novak, M.A., Henchey, E., Riget, F.F...concentrations vary by region of capture in free-ranging Steller sea lion pups.” 7. Bechshøft, Thea - “Cortisol in polar bear hair; results and applications

  1. The placental mammal ancestor and the post-K-Pg radiation of placentals.

    PubMed

    O'Leary, Maureen A; Bloch, Jonathan I; Flynn, John J; Gaudin, Timothy J; Giallombardo, Andres; Giannini, Norberto P; Goldberg, Suzann L; Kraatz, Brian P; Luo, Zhe-Xi; Meng, Jin; Ni, Xijun; Novacek, Michael J; Perini, Fernando A; Randall, Zachary S; Rougier, Guillermo W; Sargis, Eric J; Silcox, Mary T; Simmons, Nancy B; Spaulding, Michelle; Velazco, Paúl M; Weksler, Marcelo; Wible, John R; Cirranello, Andrea L

    2013-02-08

    To discover interordinal relationships of living and fossil placental mammals and the time of origin of placentals relative to the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary, we scored 4541 phenomic characters de novo for 86 fossil and living species. Combining these data with molecular sequences, we obtained a phylogenetic tree that, when calibrated with fossils, shows that crown clade Placentalia and placental orders originated after the K-Pg boundary. Many nodes discovered using molecular data are upheld, but phenomic signals overturn molecular signals to show Sundatheria (Dermoptera + Scandentia) as the sister taxon of Primates, a close link between Proboscidea (elephants) and Sirenia (sea cows), and the monophyly of echolocating Chiroptera (bats). Our tree suggests that Placentalia first split into Xenarthra and Epitheria; extinct New World species are the oldest members of Afrotheria.

  2. A new symmetrodont mammal (Trechnotheria: Zhangheotheriidae) from the Early Cretaceous of China and trechnotherian character evolution

    PubMed Central

    Bi, Shundong; Zheng, Xiaoting; Meng, Jin; Wang, Xiaoli; Robinson, Nicole; Davis, Brian

    2016-01-01

    We report the discovery of Anebodon luoi, a new genus and species of zhangheotheriid symmetrodont mammal from the Lujiatun site of the Lower Cretaceous Yixian Formation, China. The fossil is represented by an associated partial skull and dentaries with a nearly complete dentition, and with a dental formula of I4/3 C1/1 P5/4 M3/4. This new taxon lacks the high molar count typical of derived symmetrodonts, differing from the well-represented zhangheotheriids Zhangheotherium and Maotherium in having a postcanine dental formula that resembles more primitive tinodontid symmetrodonts on the one hand, and sister taxa to therians such as Peramus on the other. Upper and lower distal premolars are strongly molariform and are captured undergoing replacement, clarifying positional homology among related taxa. We also describe the rostrum and, for the first time in a symmetrodont, much of the orbital mosaic. Importantly, our new taxon occupies a basal position within the Zhangheotheriidae and permits discussion of trechnotherian character evolution, ultimately shedding additional light on the evolution of therians. PMID:27215593

  3. Farewell to life on land - thoracic strength as a new indicator to determine paleoecology in secondary aquatic mammals.

    PubMed

    Ando, Konami; Fujiwara, Shin-Ichi

    2016-12-01

    Habitat shifts from land to water have occurred independently in several mammal lineages. However, because we do not know completely about the relationship between skeletal morphology and function, both reliable life reconstructions of each extinct taxon and the timing of those shifts in locomotor strategies are yet to be fully understood. We estimated the strengths of rib cages against vertical compression in 26 extant and four extinct mammal specimens including cetartiodactyls, paenungulates, and carnivorans, representing 11 terrestrial, six semi-aquatic, and nine obligate aquatic taxa. Our analyses of extant taxa showed that strengths were high among terrestrial/semi-aquatic mammals, whose rib cages are subjected to vertical compression during the support on land, whereas strengths were low among obligate aquatic mammals, whose rib cages are not subjected to antigravity force in the water. We therefore propose rib strength as a new index to estimate the ability of an animal to be supported on land while being supported by either the forelimbs or thoracic region. According to our analyses of extinct taxa, this ability to be supported on land was rejected for a basal cetacean (Cetartiodactyla: Ambulocetus) and two desmostylians (Paenungulata: Paleoparadoxia and Neoparadoxia). However, this ability was not rejected for one desmostylian species (Desmostylus). Further study of the ribs of extant/extinct semi-aquatic taxa may help in understanding the ecological shifts in these groups.

  4. Trade-off between taxon diversity and functional diversity in European lake ecosystems.

    PubMed

    Grossmann, Lars; Beisser, Daniela; Bock, Christina; Chatzinotas, Antonis; Jensen, Manfred; Preisfeld, Angelika; Psenner, Roland; Rahmann, Sven; Wodniok, Sabina; Boenigk, Jens

    2016-12-01

    Inferring ecosystem functioning and ecosystem services through inspections of the species inventory is a major aspect of ecological field studies. Ecosystem functions are often stable despite considerable species turnover. Using metatranscriptome analyses, we analyse a thus-far unparalleled freshwater data set which comprises 21 mainland European freshwater lakes from the Sierra Nevada (Spain) to the Carpathian Mountains (Romania) and from northern Germany to the Apennines (Italy) and covers an altitudinal range from 38 m above sea level (a.s.l) to 3110 m a.s.l. The dominant taxa were Chlorophyta and streptophytic algae, Ciliophora, Bacillariophyta and Chrysophyta. Metatranscriptomics provided insights into differences in community composition and into functional diversity via the relative share of taxa to the overall read abundance of distinct functional genes on the ecosystem level. The dominant metabolic pathways in terms of the fraction of expressed sequences in the cDNA libraries were affiliated with primary metabolism, specifically oxidative phosphorylation, photosynthesis and the TCA cycle. Our analyses indicate that community composition is a good first proxy for the analysis of ecosystem functions. However, differential gene regulation modifies the relative importance of taxa in distinct pathways. Whereas taxon composition varies considerably between lakes, the relative importance of distinct metabolic pathways is much more stable, indicating that ecosystem functioning is buffered against shifts in community composition through a functional redundancy of taxa.

  5. Single-taxon field measurements of bacterial gene regulation controlling DMSP fate.

    PubMed

    Varaljay, Vanessa A; Robidart, Julie; Preston, Christina M; Gifford, Scott M; Durham, Bryndan P; Burns, Andrew S; Ryan, John P; Marin, Roman; Kiene, Ronald P; Zehr, Jonathan P; Scholin, Christopher A; Moran, Mary Ann

    2015-07-01

    The 'bacterial switch' is a proposed regulatory point in the global sulfur cycle that routes dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) to two fundamentally different fates in seawater through genes encoding either the cleavage or demethylation pathway, and affects the flux of volatile sulfur from ocean surface waters to the atmosphere. Yet which ecological or physiological factors might control the bacterial switch remains a topic of considerable debate. Here we report the first field observations of dynamic changes in expression of DMSP pathway genes by a single marine bacterial species in its natural environment. Detection of taxon-specific gene expression in Roseobacter species HTCC2255 during a month-long deployment of an autonomous ocean sensor in Monterey Bay, CA captured in situ regulation of the first gene in each DMSP pathway (dddP and dmdA) that corresponded with shifts in the taxonomy of the phytoplankton community. Expression of the demethylation pathway was relatively greater during a high-DMSP-producing dinoflagellate bloom, and expression of the cleavage pathway was greater in the presence of a mixed diatom and dinoflagellate community [corrected].These field data fit the prevailing hypothesis for bacterial DMSP gene regulation based on bacterial sulfur demand, but also suggest a modification involving oxidative stress response, evidenced as upregulation of catalase via katG, when DMSP is demethylated.

  6. A New Taxon of Basal Ceratopsian from China and the Early Evolution of Ceratopsia

    PubMed Central

    Han, Fenglu; Forster, Catherine A.; Clark, James M.; Xu, Xing

    2015-01-01

    Ceratopsia is one of the best studied herbivorous ornithischian clades, but the early evolution of Ceratopsia, including the placement of Psittacosaurus, is still controversial and unclear. Here, we report a second basal ceratopsian, Hualianceratops wucaiwanensis gen. et sp. nov., from the Upper Jurassic (Oxfordian) Shishugou Formation of the Junggar Basin, northwestern China. This new taxon is characterized by a prominent caudodorsal process on the subtemporal ramus of the jugal, a robust quadrate with an expansive quadratojugal facet, a prominent notch near the ventral region of the quadrate, a deep and short dentary, and strongly rugose texturing on the lateral surface of the dentary. Hualianceratops shares several derived characters with both Psittacosaurus and the basal ceratopsians Yinlong, Chaoyangsaurus, and Xuanhuaceratops. A new comprehensive phylogeny of ceratopsians weakly supports both Yinlong and Hualianceratops as chaoyangsaurids (along with Chaoyangsaurus and Xuanhuaceratops), as well as the monophyly of Chaoyangosauridae + Psittacosaurus. This analysis also weakly supports the novel hypothesis that Chaoyangsauridae + Psittacosaurus is the sister group to the rest of Neoceratopsia, suggesting a basal split between these clades before the Late Jurassic. This phylogeny and the earliest Late Jurassic age of Yinlong and Hualianceratops imply that at least five ceratopsian lineages (Yinlong, Hualianceratops, Chaoyangsaurus + Xuanhuaceratops, Psittacosaurus, Neoceratopsia) were present at the beginning of the Late Jurassic. PMID:26649770

  7. Single-taxon field measurements of bacterial gene regulation controlling DMSP fate

    PubMed Central

    Varaljay, Vanessa A; Robidart, Julie; Preston, Christina M; Gifford, Scott M; Durham, Bryndan P; Burns, Andrew S; Ryan, John P; Marin III, Roman; Kiene, Ronald P; Zehr, Jonathan P; Scholin, Christopher A; Ann Moran, Mary

    2015-01-01

    The ‘bacterial switch' is a proposed regulatory point in the global sulfur cycle that routes dimethylsulfoniopropionate (DMSP) to two fundamentally different fates in seawater through genes encoding either the cleavage or demethylation pathway, and affects the flux of volatile sulfur from ocean surface waters to the atmosphere. Yet which ecological or physiological factors might control the bacterial switch remains a topic of considerable debate. Here we report the first field observations of dynamic changes in expression of DMSP pathway genes by a single marine bacterial species in its natural environment. Detection of taxon-specific gene expression in Roseobacter species HTCC2255 during a month-long deployment of an autonomous ocean sensor in Monterey Bay, CA captured in situ regulation of the first gene in each DMSP pathway (dddP and dmdA) that corresponded with shifts in the taxonomy of the phytoplankton community. Expression of the cleavage pathway was relatively greater during a high-DMSP-producing dinoflagellate bloom, and expression of the demethylation pathway was greater in the presence of a mixed diatom and dinoflagellate community. These field data fit the prevailing hypothesis for bacterial DMSP gene regulation based on bacterial sulfur demand, but also suggest a modification involving oxidative stress response, evidenced as upregulation of catalase via katG, when DMSP is demethylated. PMID:25700338

  8. Negevirus: a Proposed New Taxon of Insect-Specific Viruses with Wide Geographic Distribution

    PubMed Central

    Vasilakis, Nikos; Forrester, Naomi L.; Palacios, Gustavo; Nasar, Farooq; Savji, Nazir; Rossi, Shannan L.; Guzman, Hilda; Wood, Thomas G.; Popov, Vsevolod; Gorchakov, Rodion; González, Ana Vázquez; Haddow, Andrew D.; Watts, Douglas M.; da Rosa, Amelia P. A. Travassos; Weaver, Scott C.; Lipkin, W. Ian

    2013-01-01

    Six novel insect-specific viruses, isolated from mosquitoes and phlebotomine sand flies collected in Brazil, Peru, the United States, Ivory Coast, Israel, and Indonesia, are described. Their genomes consist of single-stranded, positive-sense RNAs with poly(A) tails. By electron microscopy, the virions appear as spherical particles with diameters of ∼45 to 55 nm. Based on their genome organization and phylogenetic relationship, the six viruses, designated Negev, Ngewotan, Piura, Loreto, Dezidougou, and Santana, appear to form a new taxon, tentatively designated Negevirus. Their closest but still distant relatives are citrus leposis virus C (CiLV-C) and viruses in the genus Cilevirus, which are mite-transmitted plant viruses. The negeviruses replicate rapidly and to high titer (up to 1010 PFU/ml) in mosquito cells, producing extensive cytopathic effect and plaques, but they do not appear to replicate in mammalian cells or mice. A discussion follows on their possible biological significance and effect on mosquito vector competence for arboviruses. PMID:23255793

  9. 'Candidatus phytoplasma ziziphi', a novel phytoplasma taxon associated with jujube witches'-broom disease.

    PubMed

    Jung, Hee-Young; Sawayanagi, Toshimi; Kakizawa, Shigeyuki; Nishigawa, Hisashi; Wei, Wei; Oshima, Kenro; Miyata, Shin-ichi; Ugaki, Masashi; Hibi, Tadaaki; Namba, Shigetou

    2003-07-01

    Phylogenetic relationships of five jujube witches'-broom (JWB) phytoplasma isolates from four different districts, and other phytoplasmas, were investigated by 16S rDNA PCR amplification and sequence analysis. The 16S rDNA sequences of any pair of the five isolates of JWB phytoplasmas were > 99.5% similar. The JWB phytoplasma 16S rDNA sequences were most closely related to that of the elm yellows (EY) phytoplasma in 16S-group VIII. Phylogenetic analysis of the 16S rDNA sequences from the JWB phytoplasma isolates, together with sequences from most of the phytoplasmas archived in GenBank, produced a tree in which the JWB isolates clustered as a discrete subgroup. The uniqueness of the JWB phytoplasma appears to be correlated with a specific insect vector (Hishimonus sellatus) and the host plant (Zizyphus jujuba), or with a specific geographical distribution. The unique properties of the JWB phytoplasma sequences clearly indicate that it represents a novel taxon, 'Candidatus Phytoplasma ziziphi'.

  10. 'Candidatus Phytoplasma castaneae', a novel phytoplasma taxon associated with chestnut witches' broom disease.

    PubMed

    Jung, Hee-Young; Sawayanagi, Toshimi; Kakizawa, Shigeyuki; Nishigawa, Hisashi; Miyata, Shin-ichi; Oshima, Kenro; Ugaki, Masashi; Lee, Joon-Tak; Hibi, Tadaaki; Namba, Shigetou

    2002-09-01

    In Korea, Japanese chestnut trees (Castanea crenata Sieb. and Zucc.) showing symptoms indicative of witches' broom disease, including abnormally small leaves and yellowing of young leaves, were examined. Since the symptoms were suggestive of a phytoplasma infection, tissues were assayed for phytoplasmas by PCR analysis using a pair of universal primers that amplify a 1.4-kbp phytoplasma 16S rDNA fragment. The phytoplasma-specific fragment was amplified from diseased plants, but not from healthy plants, indicating that a phytoplasma was the causal agent of the chestnut witches' broom (CnWB) disease. The phylogenetic relationship of the CnWB phytoplasma to other phytoplasmas was examined by sequence analysis of the 16S rDNA. A phylogenetic analysis of 16S rDNA sequences of the phytoplasmas placed the CnWB phytoplasma within a distinct subgroup in the phytoplasma clade of the class Mollicutes. The phylogenetic tree indicated that the CnWB phytoplasma is related most closely to coconut phytoplasmas and suggested that they share a common ancestor. The unique properties of the CnWB phytoplasma sequences clearly establish that it represents a novel taxon, 'Candidatus Phytoplasma castaneae'.

  11. 'Candidatus Phytoplasma brasiliense', a new phytoplasma taxon associated with hibiscus witches' broom disease.

    PubMed

    Montano, H G; Davis, R E; Dally, E L; Hogenhout, S; Pimentel, J P; Brioso, P S

    2001-05-01

    Hibiscus rosa-sinensis is a valuable ornamental species widely planted in Brazil. Many plants are affected by witches' broom disease, which is characterized by excessive axillary branching, abnormally small leaves, and deformed flowers, symptoms that are characteristic of diseases attributed to phytoplasmas. A phytoplasma was detected in diseased Hibiscus by amplification of rRNA operon sequences by PCRs, and was characterized by RFLP and nucleotide sequence analyses of 16S rDNA. The collective RFLP patterns of amplified 16S rDNA differed from the patterns described previously for other phytoplasmas. On the basis of the RFLP patterns, the hibiscus witches' broom phytoplasma was classified in a new 16S rRNA RFLP group, designated group 16SrXV. A phylogenetic analysis of 16S rDNA sequences from this and other phytoplasmas identified the hibiscus witches' broom phytoplasma as a member of a distinct subclade (designated subclade xiv) of the class Mollicutes. A phylogenetic tree constructed on the basis of 16S rRNA gene sequences was consistent with the hypothesis that there was divergent evolution of hibiscus witches' broom phytoplasma and its closest relatives (members of 16S rRNA RFLP group 16SrII) from a common ancestor. On the basis of unique properties of the DNA from hibiscus witches' broom phytoplasma, it is proposed that it represents a new taxon, namely 'Candidatus Phytoplasma brasiliense'.

  12. Integration of approaches in David Wake's model-taxon research platform for evolutionary morphology.

    PubMed

    Griesemer, James

    2013-12-01

    What gets integrated in integrative scientific practices has been a topic of much discussion. Traditional views focus on theories and explanations, with ideas of reduction and unification dominating the conversation. More recent ideas focus on disciplines, fields, or specialties; models, mechanisms, or methods; phenomena, problems. How integration works looks different on each of these views since the objects of integration are ontologically and epistemically various: statements, boundary conditions, practices, protocols, methods, variables, parameters, domains, laboratories, and questions all have their own structures, functions and logics. I focus on one particular kind of scientific practice, integration of "approaches" in the context of a research system operating on a special kind of "platform." Rather than trace a network of interactions among people, practices, and theoretical entities to be integrated, in this essay I focus on the work of a single investigator, David Wake. I describe Wake's practice of integrative evolutionary biology and how his integration of approaches among biological specialties worked in tandem with his development of the salamanders as a model taxon, which he used as a platform to solve, re-work and update problems that would not have been solved so well by non-integrative approaches. The larger goal of the project to which this paper contributes is a counter-narrative to the story of 20th century life sciences as the rise and march of the model organisms and decline of natural history.

  13. Comprehensive gene and taxon coverage elucidates radiation patterns in moths and butterflies.

    PubMed

    Mutanen, Marko; Wahlberg, Niklas; Kaila, Lauri

    2010-09-22

    Lepidoptera (butterflies and moths) represent one of the most diverse animals groups. Yet, the phylogeny of advanced ditrysian Lepidoptera, accounting for about 99 per cent of lepidopteran species, has remained largely unresolved. We report a rigorous and comprehensive analysis of lepidopteran affinities. We performed phylogenetic analyses of 350 taxa representing nearly 90 per cent of lepidopteran families. We found Ditrysia to be a monophyletic taxon with the clade Tischerioidea + Palaephatoidea being the sister group of it. No support for the monophyly of the proposed major internested ditrysian clades, Apoditrysia, Obtectomera and Macrolepidoptera, was found as currently defined, but each of these is supported with some modification. The monophyly or near-monophyly of most previously identified lepidopteran superfamilies is reinforced, but several species-rich superfamilies were found to be para- or polyphyletic. Butterflies were found to be more closely related to 'microlepidopteran' groups of moths rather than the clade Macrolepidoptera, where they have traditionally been placed. There is support for the monophyly of Macrolepidoptera when butterflies and Calliduloidea are excluded. The data suggest that the generally short diverging nodes between major groupings in basal non-tineoid Ditrysia are owing to their rapid radiation, presumably in correlation with the radiation of flowering plants.

  14. Mycobacterial contamination of metalworking fluids: involvement of a possible new taxon of rapidly growing mycobacteria.

    PubMed

    Moore, J S; Christensen, M; Wilson, R W; Wallace, R J; Zhang, Y; Nash, D R; Shelton, B

    2000-01-01

    Contamination of air and metalworking fluid (MWF) systems with a rapidly growing mycobacterium (RGM) was detected in 1995 in a single manufacturing plant with recent cases of hypersensitivity pneumonitis (HP). Extensive environmental sampling was performed to determine the extent of the contamination and its variability over time. RGM were present in multiple indoor air samples, 100% of the central MWF storage tanks, and 75% of the freestanding cutting, drilling, and grinding machines. With one exception, contamination was limited to a recently introduced formulation (brand) of semisynthetic MWF used in 95% of the facility's machining operations. In general, the mycobacterial counts were stable over time, with the degree of contamination ranging from 10(2)-10(7) colony forming units (CFU)/mL. A few systems were culture positive for the mycobacterium (> 10(1) CFU/mL), changed to culture negative (< 10(1) CFU/mL), then changed back to culture positive without explanation. Samples obtained from diluted (5%) but unused MWF, a replenishment line with 2% unused MWF, an MWF pasteurizer, city water, and deionized water were culture negative for this species of mycobacterium. Inoculation and growth studies demonstrated that this mycobacterium does not grow in liquid samples of 5% unused MWF. By molecular techniques, the mycobacterial isolates consisted of a single strain and represented a previously undescribed taxon closely related to Mycobacterium chelonae/abscessus. The relationship of this mycobacterium to the cases of HP is unknown.

  15. Biological richness of a large urban cemetery in Berlin. Results of a multi-taxon approach

    PubMed Central

    Blick, Theo; Hannig, Karsten; Kowarik, Ingo; Lemke, Andreas; Otte, Volker; Scharon, Jens; Schönhofer, Axel; Teige, Tobias; von der Lippe, Moritz; Seitz, Birgit

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Background Urban green spaces can harbor a considerable species richness of plants and animals. A few studies on single species groups indicate important habitat functions of cemeteries, but this land use type is clearly understudied compared to parks. Such data are important as they (i) illustrate habitat functions of a specific, but ubiquitous urban land-use type and (ii) may serve as a basis for management approaches. New information We sampled different groups of plants and animals in the Weißensee Jewish Cemetery in Berlin (WJC) which is one of the largest Jewish cemeteries in Europe. With a total of 608 species of plants and animals, this first multi-taxon survey revealed a considerable biological richness in the WJC. In all, 363 wild-growing vascular plant, 72 lichen and 26 bryophyte taxa were recorded. The sampling also yielded 34 bird and 5 bat species as well as 39 ground beetle, 5 harvestman and 64 spider species. Some species are new records for Berlin. PMID:27099549

  16. Genetic characterization, molecular epidemiology, and phylogenetic relationships of insect-specific viruses in the taxon Negevirus.

    PubMed

    Nunes, Marcio R T; Contreras-Gutierrez, María Angélica; Guzman, Hilda; Martins, Livia C; Barbirato, Mayla Feitoza; Savit, Chelsea; Balta, Victoria; Uribe, Sandra; Vivero, Rafael; Suaza, Juan David; Oliveira, Hamilton; Nunes Neto, Joaquin P; Carvalho, Valeria L; da Silva, Sandro Patroca; Cardoso, Jedson F; de Oliveira, Rodrigo Santo; da Silva Lemos, Poliana; Wood, Thomas G; Widen, Steven G; Vasconcelos, Pedro F C; Fish, Durland; Vasilakis, Nikos; Tesh, Robert B

    2017-04-01

    The recently described taxon Negevirus is comprised of a diverse group of insect-specific viruses isolated from mosquitoes and phlebotomine sandflies. In this study, a comprehensive genetic characterization, molecular, epidemiological and evolutionary analyses were conducted on nearly full-length sequences of 91 new negevirus isolates obtained in Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Panama, USA and Nepal. We demonstrated that these arthropod restricted viruses are clustered in two major phylogenetic groups with origins related to three plant virus genera (Cilevirus, Higrevirus and Blunevirus). Molecular analyses demonstrated that specific host correlations are not present with most negeviruses; instead, high genetic variability, wide host-range, and cross-species transmission were noted. The data presented here also revealed the existence of five novel insect-specific viruses falling into two arthropod-restrictive virus taxa, previously proposed as distinct genera, designated Nelorpivirus and Sandewavirus. Our results provide a better understanding of the molecular epidemiology, evolution, taxonomy and stability of this group of insect-restricted viruses.

  17. Morbillivirus infections in aquatic mammals.

    PubMed

    Kennedy, S

    1998-10-01

    Morbillivirus infections which were not documented in aquatic mammals until 1988, have caused at least five epizootics in these species during the last 10 years. Affected populations include European harbour seals (Phoca vitulina) and grey seals (Halichoerus grypus) in 1998, Baikal seals (Phoca siberica) in Siberia from 1987-1988, striped dolphins (Stenella coeruleoalba) in the Mediterranean Sea from 1990-1992 and bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus) along the eastern coast of the United States from 1987-1988 and in the Gulf of Mexico from 1993-1994. Clinical signs and lesions in affected animals were similar to those of canine distemper. Lesions were mainly seen in lung, central nervous and lymphoid tissues and included formation of intranuclear and intracytoplasmic inclusion bodies. Syncytia were commonly found in lung and lymphoid tissues of cetaceans but not of pinnipeds. Antigenic and molecular biological studies indicate that a newly discovered morbillivirus, termed phocine distemper virus, and canine distemper virus were responsible for recent pinniped epizootics; cetacean die-offs were caused by strains of a second, newly recognized cetacean morbillivirus. Serological evidence of morbillivirus infection has been identified in a broad range of marine mammal populations and recent epizootics probably resulted from transfer of virus to immunologically-naive populations.

  18. Aestivation in mammals and birds.

    PubMed

    Geiser, Fritz

    2010-01-01

    Aestivation, which in the context of this paper refers to avian and mammalian torpor in summer/at high ambient temperatures (T (a)), does not appear to differ functionally from other forms of torpor, and to a large extent reflects the higher body temperatures (T (b)) caused by high T (a). However, from an ecological point of view, aestivation results in different challenges and requirements than does torpor use in winter, because heat can cause reduced food and water availability in many regions, but without the access to low T (a) for a substantial reduction of T (b). Aestivation is used by a diversity of adult mammals and birds both in the field and laboratory, as well as by growing young to reduce thermoregulatory energy expenditure. Torpor occurs at high T (a) including the thermo-neutral zone and even under these conditions the reduction in energy expenditure and water requirements or water loss is substantial. Although data from the laboratory and, especially, from the field are limited, they show that torpor at high T (a) is an effective survival strategy and suggest that it is employed by many mammals and birds in a diversity of habitats.

  19. 75 FR 38991 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Space Vehicle and...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-07-07

    ..., Conservation and Education Division, Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service, 1315... is likely to disturb a marine mammal or marine mammal stock in the wild by causing disruption...

  20. 76 FR 41486 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Operation and...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-07-14

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Operation and Maintenance of the Neptune Liquefied Natural Gas Facility off...

  1. 76 FR 11205 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Construction and...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-03-01

    ... Marine Mammals Incidental to Construction and Operation of a Liquefied Natural Gas Deepwater Port in the... marine mammal species incidental to construction and operation of a liquefied natural gas (LNG)...

  2. 77 FR 23547 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Columbia River Crossing...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-04-19

    ... Part 217 Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Columbia River... Incidental to Columbia River Crossing Project, Washington and Oregon AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries... Transit Authority (FTA) and Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), on behalf of the Columbia...

  3. Meiotic recombination in mammals: localization and regulation.

    PubMed

    Baudat, Frédéric; Imai, Yukiko; de Massy, Bernard

    2013-11-01

    During meiosis, a programmed induction of DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) leads to the exchange of genetic material between homologous chromosomes. These exchanges increase genome diversity and are essential for proper chromosome segregation at the first meiotic division. Recent findings have highlighted an unexpected molecular control of the distribution of meiotic DSBs in mammals by a rapidly evolving gene, PR domain-containing 9 (PRDM9), and genome-wide analyses have facilitated the characterization of meiotic DSB sites at unprecedented resolution. In addition, the identification of new players in DSB repair processes has allowed the delineation of recombination pathways that have two major outcomes, crossovers and non-crossovers, which have distinct mechanistic roles and consequences for genome evolution.

  4. Mammal extinctions, body size, and paleotemperature

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bown, T.M.; Holroyd, P.A.; Rose, K.D.

    1994-01-01

    There is a general inverse relationship between the natural logarithm of tooth area (a body size indicator) of some fossil mammals and paleotemperature during approximately 2.9 million years of the early Eocene in the Bighorn Basin of northwest Wyoming. When mean temperatures became warmer, tooth areas tended to become smaller. During colder times, larger species predominated; these generally became larger or remained the same size. Paleotemperature trends also markedly affected patterns of local (and, perhaps, regional) extinction and immigration. New species appeared as immigrants during or near the hottest (smaller forms) and coldest (larger forms) intervals. Paleotemperature trend reversals commonly resulted in the ultimate extinction of both small forms (during cooling intervals) and larger forms (during warming intervals). These immigrations and extinctions mark faunal turnovers that were also modulated by sharp increases in sediment accumulation rate.

  5. Influence of alternative silviculture on small mammals

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Waldien, David L.; Hayes, John P.

    2006-01-01

    HIGHLIGHT: A variety of harvest methods promote diversity within forests while still generating income. For example, recent studies have shown that when dead wood is left on the forest floor during harvest, biodiversity increases. A new Cooperative Forest Ecosystem Research (CFER) program fact sheet summarizes how small mammals respond to dead wood in forests that are harvested with alternative methods. CFER is developing a series of fact sheets about responses to changes in young western Oregon forests. The fact sheets are designed to help resource managers balance management needs, including timber and wildlife. The USGS provides a primary source of financial support for CFER, a consortium of federal and state partners conducting research in support of the Northwest Forest Plan.

  6. Marine mammal impacts in exploited ecosystems: would large scale culling benefit fisheries?

    PubMed

    Morissette, Lyne; Christensen, Villy; Pauly, Daniel

    2012-01-01

    Competition between marine mammals and fisheries for marine resources-whether real or perceived-has become a major issue for several countries and in international fora. We examined trophic interactions between marine mammals and fisheries based on a resource overlap index, using seven Ecopath models including marine mammal groups. On a global scale, most food consumed by marine mammals consisted of prey types that were not the main target of fisheries. For each ecosystem, the primary production required (PPR) to sustain marine mammals was less than half the PPR to sustain fisheries catches. We also developed an index representing the mean trophic level of marine mammal's consumption (TL(Q)) and compared it with the mean trophic level of fisheries' catches (TL(C)). Our results showed that overall TL(Q) was lower than TL(C) (2.88 versus 3.42). As fisheries increasingly exploit lower-trophic level species, the competition with marine mammals may become more important. We used mixed trophic impact analysis to evaluate indirect trophic effects of marine mammals, and in some cases found beneficial effects on some prey. Finally, we assessed the change in the trophic structure of an ecosystem after a simulated extirpation of marine mammal populations. We found that this lead to alterations in the structure of the ecosystems, and that there was no clear and direct relationship between marine mammals' predation and the potential catch by fisheries. Indeed, total biomass, with no marine mammals in the ecosystem, generally remained surprisingly similar, or even decreased for some species.

  7. 50 CFR 216.25 - Exempted marine mammals and marine mammal products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 10 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Exempted marine mammals and marine mammal products. 216.25 Section 216.25 Wildlife and Fisheries NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE, NATIONAL OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE MARINE MAMMALS REGULATIONS GOVERNING THE...

  8. 50 CFR 216.25 - Exempted marine mammals and marine mammal products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 10 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Exempted marine mammals and marine mammal products. 216.25 Section 216.25 Wildlife and Fisheries NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE, NATIONAL OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE MARINE MAMMALS REGULATIONS GOVERNING THE...

  9. 50 CFR 216.25 - Exempted marine mammals and marine mammal products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Exempted marine mammals and marine mammal products. 216.25 Section 216.25 Wildlife and Fisheries NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE, NATIONAL OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE MARINE MAMMALS REGULATIONS GOVERNING THE...

  10. 50 CFR 216.25 - Exempted marine mammals and marine mammal products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 7 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Exempted marine mammals and marine mammal products. 216.25 Section 216.25 Wildlife and Fisheries NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE, NATIONAL OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE MARINE MAMMALS REGULATIONS GOVERNING THE...

  11. 76 FR 9250 - Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-02-17

    ... marine mammal and sound research (funded by the Navy or otherwise) Any verified information which reveals... the shelf break, sea surface temperature (SST), and chlorophyll a (chl a) concentration was formulated... mammals to levels of sound likely to result in injury or death of marine mammals; (3) several...

  12. 50 CFR 216.25 - Exempted marine mammals and marine mammal products.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 10 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Exempted marine mammals and marine mammal products. 216.25 Section 216.25 Wildlife and Fisheries NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE, NATIONAL OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC ADMINISTRATION, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE MARINE MAMMALS REGULATIONS GOVERNING THE...

  13. A cross-taxon analysis of insect-associated bacterial diversity.

    PubMed

    Jones, Ryan Thomas; Sanchez, Leticia Gonzales; Fierer, Noah

    2013-01-01

    Although it is well known that plants and animals harbor microbial symbionts that can influence host traits, the factors regulating the structure of these microbial communities often remain largely undetermined. This is particularly true for insect-associated microbial communities, as few cross-taxon comparisons have been conducted to date. To address this knowledge gap and determine how host phylogeny and ecology affect insect-associated microbial communities, we collected 137 insect specimens representing 39 species, 28 families, and 8 orders, and characterized the bacterial communities associated with each specimen via 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Bacterial taxa within the phylum Proteobacteria were dominant in nearly all insects sampled. On average, the insect-associated bacterial communities were not very diverse, with individuals typically harboring fewer than 8 bacterial phylotypes. Bacterial communities also tended to be dominated by a single phylotype; on average, the most abundant phylotype represented 54.7% of community membership. Bacterial communities were significantly more similar among closely related insects than among less-related insects, a pattern driven by within-species community similarity but detected at every level of insect taxonomy tested. Diet was a poor predictor of bacterial community composition. Individual insect species harbored remarkably unique communities: the distribution of 69.0% of bacterial phylotypes was limited to unique insect species, whereas only 5.7% of phylotypes were detected in more than five insect species. Together these results suggest that host characteristics strongly regulate the colonization and assembly of bacterial communities across insect lineages, patterns that are driven either by co-evolution between insects and their symbionts or by closely related insects sharing conserved traits that directly select for similar bacterial communities.

  14. Taxon-specific growth and selective microzooplankton grazing of phytoplankton in the Northeast Atlantic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gaul, Wilhelm; Antia, Avan N.

    2001-10-01

    Taxon-specific microzooplankton dynamics were studied along a transect through the North Atlantic Drift from 70°N 04°E to 40°N 20°W during July 1997 using serial dilution and nutrient-enrichment experiments. Nutrient concentrations and microzooplankton composition indicated postbloom conditions at 40°N, 47°N, and 50°N, a transitional system at 54°N, and bloom conditions at 62°N and 70°N. The ratio of microzooplankton to phytoplankton biomass was inversely related to nitrate and phosphate concentrations. Potential grazing thresholds were observed in four of nine experiments at 40-66% of the initial phytoplankton concentration. Grazing losses were determined for six pigment-specific classes of phytoplankton. Selective grazing losses of phytoplankton taxa ranged from 73% to 248% of the nonselective grazing losses predicted according to their biomass contributions. The grazing selectivity varied considerably between communities, with the microherbivores showing positive selection for cyanobacteria and dinoflagellates and predominantly avoidance of chlorophyta and bacillariophyceae. Microzooplankton did not show a preference for the dominant phytoplankton taxa, but grazed preferentially on fast-growing phytoplankton with minor contributions (<15%) to the phytoplankton biomass. However, bacillariophyceae were the major contributors to phytoplankton biomass and accounted for major fractions of the total losses through microzooplankton grazing. Microzooplankton consumed the equivalent of 0.12-5.5 times their own biomass daily on a carbon basis, amounting to 65-197% of gross phytoplankton production. With the conservative assumption that 20% of the consumed phytoplankton was converted to microzooplankton biomass, the latter was estimated to contribute 27-381% to the net production of the entire microzooplankton community. We therefore conclude that the taxonomic structure and the net production of the microzooplankton communities were significantly affected by the

  15. Two new cytotypes reinforce that Micronycteris hirsuta Peters, 1869 does not represent a monotypic taxon

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The genus Micronycteris is a diverse group of phyllostomid bats currently comprising 11 species, with diploid number (2n) ranging from 26 to 40 chromosomes. The karyotypic relationships within Micronycteris and between Micronycteris and other phyllostomids remain poorly understood. The karyotype of Micronycteris hirsuta is of particular interest: three different diploid numbers were reported for this species in South and Central Americas with 2n = 26, 28 and 30 chromosomes. Although current evidence suggests some geographic differentiation among populations of M. hirsuta based on chromosomal, morphological, and nuclear and mitochondrial DNA markers, the recognition of new species or subspecies has been avoided due to the need for additional data, mainly chromosomal data. Results We describe two new cytotypes for Micronycteris hirsuta (MHI) (2n = 26 and 25, NF = 32), whose differences in diploid number are interpreted as the products of Robertsonian rearrangements. C-banding revealed a small amount of constitutive heterochromatin at the centromere and the NOR was located in the interstitial portion of the short arm of a second pair, confirmed by FISH. Telomeric probes hybridized to the centromeric regions and weakly to telomeric regions of most chromosomes. The G-banding analysis and chromosome painting with whole chromosome probes from Carollia brevicauda (CBR) and Phyllostomus hastatus (PHA) enabled the establishment of genome-wide homologies between MHI, CBR and PHA. Conclusions The karyotypes of Brazilian specimens of Micronycteris hirsuta described here are new to Micronycteris and reinforce that M. hirsuta does not represent a monotypic taxon. Our results corroborate the hypothesis of karyotypic megaevolution within Micronycteris, and strong evidence for this is that the entire chromosome complement of M. hirsuta was shown to be derivative with respect to species compared in this study. PMID:24359225

  16. MARINE MAMMAL DISEASES: PATHOGENS AND PROCESSES

    EPA Science Inventory

    The purpose of this chapter is to provide a concise overview of the pathogens and processes that alter the health of marine mammals. Viral disease is the most common etiology of significant mortality events in marine mammals. Discussion of viral disease focuses on effects in the ...

  17. Single cell genomics of uncultured, health-associated Tannerella BU063 (Oral Taxon 286) and comparison to the closely related pathogen Tannerella forsythia.

    PubMed

    Beall, Clifford J; Campbell, Alisha G; Dayeh, Daniel M; Griffen, Ann L; Podar, Mircea; Leys, Eugene J

    2014-01-01

    The uncultivated bacterium Tannerella BU063 (oral taxon 286) is the closest relative to the periodontal pathogen Tannerella forsythia, but is not disease-associated itself. Using a single cell genomics approach, we isolated 12 individual BU063 cells by flow cytometry, and we amplified and sequenced their genomes. Comparative analyses of the assembled genomic scaffolds and their gene contents allowed us to study the diversity of this taxon within the oral community of a single human donor that provided the sample. Eight different BU063 genotypes were represented, all about 5% divergent at the nucleotide level. There were 2 pairs of cells and one group of three that were more highly identical, and may represent clonal populations. We did pooled assemblies on the nearly identical genomes to increase the assembled genomic coverage. The presence of a set of 66 "core" housekeeping genes showed that two of the single cell assemblies and the assembly derived from the three putatively identical cells were essentially complete. As expected, the genome of BU063 is more similar to Tannerella forsythia than any other known genome, although there are significant differences, including a 44% difference in gene content, changes in metabolic pathways, loss of synteny, and an 8-9% difference in GC content. Several identified virulence genes of T. forsythia are not found in BU063 including karilysin, prtH, and bspA. The absence of these genes may explain the lack of periodontal pathogenesis by this species and provides a new foundation to further understand the genome evolution and mechanisms of bacterial-host interaction in closely related oral microbes with different pathogenicity potential.

  18. Single Cell Genomics of Uncultured, Health-Associated Tannerella BU063 (Oral Taxon 286) and Comparison to the Closely Related Pathogen Tannerella forsythia

    PubMed Central

    Beall, Clifford J.; Campbell, Alisha G.; Dayeh, Daniel M.; Griffen, Ann L.; Podar, Mircea; Leys, Eugene J.

    2014-01-01

    The uncultivated bacterium Tannerella BU063 (oral taxon 286) is the closest relative to the periodontal pathogen Tannerella forsythia, but is not disease-associated itself. Using a single cell genomics approach, we isolated 12 individual BU063 cells by flow cytometry, and we amplified and sequenced their genomes. Comparative analyses of the assembled genomic scaffolds and their gene contents allowed us to study the diversity of this taxon within the oral community of a single human donor that provided the sample. Eight different BU063 genotypes were represented, all about 5% divergent at the nucleotide level. There were 2 pairs of cells and one group of three that were more highly identical, and may represent clonal populations. We did pooled assemblies on the nearly identical genomes to increase the assembled genomic coverage. The presence of a set of 66 “core” housekeeping genes showed that two of the single cell assemblies and the assembly derived from the three putatively identical cells were essentially complete. As expected, the genome of BU063 is more similar to Tannerella forsythia than any other known genome, although there are significant differences, including a 44% difference in gene content, changes in metabolic pathways, loss of synteny, and an 8–9% difference in GC content. Several identified virulence genes of T. forsythia are not found in BU063 including karilysin, prtH, and bspA. The absence of these genes may explain the lack of periodontal pathogenesis by this species and provides a new foundation to further understand the genome evolution and mechanisms of bacterial-host interaction in closely related oral microbes with different pathogenicity potential. PMID:24551246

  19. The first multituberculate mammal from India

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parmar, Varun; Prasad, Guntupalli V. R.; Kumar, Deepak

    2013-06-01

    Mesozoic deposits of the former Gondwanaland are depauperate in early mammals, in general, and multituberculate mammals, in particular. Until now, the oldest multituberculate mammals known from the Gondwanan continents come from the Early Cretaceous of Morocco, NW Africa. Here, we report the presence of a new multituberculate mammal, Indobaatar zofiae gen. et sp. nov., from the Lower/Middle Jurassic Kota Formation, Pranhita-Godavari valley in peninsular India. This is the first record of a multituberculate from the Mesozoic rocks of India and possibly predates the oldest known multituberculates from Gondwanan continents. The new specimen, representing an upper premolar (P4), compares well with the upper premolar morphology of Eobaatariinae multituberculates known from the Early Cretaceous of Mongolia, China, England, and Spain. Together with the recent findings of cimolodontan multituberculates from the Early Cretaceous of Australia and Late Cretaceous of South America, the new discovery indicates a wide temporal and spatial distribution for multituberculate mammals in the former Gondwanaland.

  20. The first multituberculate mammal from India.

    PubMed

    Parmar, Varun; Prasad, Guntupalli V R; Kumar, Deepak

    2013-06-01

    Mesozoic deposits of the former Gondwanaland are depauperate in early mammals, in general, and multituberculate mammals, in particular. Until now, the oldest multituberculate mammals known from the Gondwanan continents come from the Early Cretaceous of Morocco, NW Africa. Here, we report the presence of a new multituberculate mammal, Indobaatar zofiae gen. et sp. nov., from the Lower/Middle Jurassic Kota Formation, Pranhita-Godavari valley in peninsular India. This is the first record of a multituberculate from the Mesozoic rocks of India and possibly predates the oldest known multituberculates from Gondwanan continents. The new specimen, representing an upper premolar (P(4)), compares well with the upper premolar morphology of Eobaatariinae multituberculates known from the Early Cretaceous of Mongolia, China, England, and Spain. Together with the recent findings of cimolodontan multituberculates from the Early Cretaceous of Australia and Late Cretaceous of South America, the new discovery indicates a wide temporal and spatial distribution for multituberculate mammals in the former Gondwanaland.

  1. Multiple Continental Radiations and Correlates of Diversification in Lupinus (Leguminosae): Testing for Key Innovation with Incomplete Taxon Sampling

    PubMed Central

    Drummond, Christopher S.; Eastwood, Ruth J.; Miotto, Silvia T. S.; Hughes, Colin E.

    2012-01-01

    Replicate radiations provide powerful comparative systems to address questions about the interplay between opportunity and innovation in driving episodes of diversification and the factors limiting their subsequent progression. However, such systems have been rarely documented at intercontinental scales. Here, we evaluate the hypothesis of multiple radiations in the genus Lupinus (Leguminosae), which exhibits some of the highest known rates of net diversification in plants. Given that incomplete taxon sampling, background extinction, and lineage-specific variation in diversification rates can confound macroevolutionary inferences regarding the timing and mechanisms of cladogenesis, we used Bayesian relaxed clock phylogenetic analyses as well as MEDUSA and BiSSE birth–death likelihood models of diversification, to evaluate the evolutionary patterns of lineage accumulation in Lupinus. We identified 3 significant shifts to increased rates of net diversification (r) relative to background levels in the genus (r = 0.18–0.48 lineages/myr). The primary shift occurred approximately 4.6 Ma (r = 0.48–1.76) in the montane regions of western North America, followed by a secondary shift approximately 2.7 Ma (r = 0.89–3.33) associated with range expansion and diversification of allopatrically distributed sister clades in the Mexican highlands and Andes. We also recovered evidence for a third independent shift approximately 6.5 Ma at the base of a lower elevation eastern South American grassland and campo rupestre clade (r = 0.36–1.33). Bayesian ancestral state reconstructions and BiSSE likelihood analyses of correlated diversification indicated that increased rates of speciation are strongly associated with the derived evolution of perennial life history and invasion of montane ecosystems. Although we currently lack hard evidence for “replicate adaptive radiations” in the sense of convergent morphological and ecological trajectories among species in different

  2. Limits to captive breeding of mammals in zoos.

    PubMed

    Alroy, John

    2015-06-01

    Captive breeding of mammals in zoos is the last hope for many of the best-known endangered species and has succeeded in saving some from certain extinction. However, the number of managed species selected is relatively small and focused on large-bodied, charismatic mammals that are not necessarily under strong threat and not always good candidates for reintroduction into the wild. Two interrelated and more fundamental questions go unanswered: have the major breeding programs succeeded at the basic level of maintaining and expanding populations, and is there room to expand them? I used published counts of births and deaths from 1970 to 2011 to quantify rates of growth of 118 captive-bred mammalian populations. These rates did not vary with body mass, contrary to strong predictions made in the ecological literature. Most of the larger managed mammalian populations expanded consistently and very few programs failed. However, growth rates have declined dramatically. The decline was predicted by changes in the ratio of the number of individuals within programs to the number of mammal populations held in major zoos. Rates decreased as the ratio of individuals in programs to populations increased. In other words, most of the programs that could exist already do exist. It therefore appears that debates over the general need for captive-breeding programs and the best selection of species are moot. Only a concerted effort could create room to manage a substantially larger number of endangered mammals.

  3. Spiny plants, mammal browsers, and the origin of African savannas

    PubMed Central

    Charles-Dominique, Tristan; Davies, T. Jonathan; Hempson, Gareth P.; Bezeng, Bezeng S.; Kabongo, Ronny M.; Maurin, Olivier; Muasya, A. Muthama; van der Bank, Michelle; Bond, William J.

    2016-01-01

    Savannas first began to spread across Africa during the Miocene. A major hypothesis for explaining this vegetation change is the increase in C4 grasses, promoting fire. We investigated whether mammals could also have contributed to savanna expansion by using spinescence as a marker of mammal herbivory. Looking at the present distribution of 1,852 tree species, we established that spinescence is mainly associated with two functional types of mammals: large browsers and medium-sized mixed feeders. Using a dated phylogeny for the same tree species, we found that spinescence evolved at least 55 times. The diversification of spiny plants occurred long after the evolution of Afrotherian proboscideans and hyracoids. However, it is remarkably congruent with diversification of bovids, the lineage including the antelope that predominantly browse these plants today. Our findings suggest that herbivore-adapted savannas evolved several million years before fire-maintained savannas and probably, in different environmental conditions. Spiny savannas with abundant mammal herbivores occur in drier climates and on nutrient-rich soils, whereas fire-maintained savannas occur in wetter climates on nutrient-poor soils. PMID:27601649

  4. A new perspective on adiposity in a naturally obese mammal.

    PubMed

    Ortiz, R M; Noren, D P; Litz, B; Ortiz, C L

    2001-12-01

    Many mammals seasonally reduce body fat due to inherent periods of fasting, which is associated with decreased leptin concentrations. However, no data exist on the correlation between fat mass (FM) and circulating leptin in marine mammals, which have evolved large fat stores as part of their adaptation to periods of prolonged fasting. Therefore, FM was estimated (by tritiated water dilution), and serum leptin and cortisol were measured in 40 northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris) pups early (<1 wk postweaning) and late (6-8 wk postweaning) during their natural, postweaning fast. Body mass (BM) and FM were reduced late; however, percent FM (early: 43.9 +/- 0.5, late: 45.5 +/- 0.5%) and leptin [early: 2.9 +/- 0.1 ng/ml human equivalents (HE), late: 3.0 +/- 0.1 ng/ml HE] did not change. Cortisol increased between early (9.2 +/- 0.5 microg/dl) and late (16.3 +/- 0.9 microg/dl) periods and was significantly and negatively correlated with BM (r = 0.426; P < 0.0001) and FM (r = 0.328; P = 0.003). FM and percent FM were not correlated (P > 0.10) with leptin at either period. The present study suggests that these naturally obese mammals appear to possess a novel cascade for regulating body fat that includes cortisol. The lack of a correlation between leptin and FM may reflect the different functions of fat between terrestrial and marine mammals.

  5. Spiny plants, mammal browsers, and the origin of African savannas.

    PubMed

    Charles-Dominique, Tristan; Davies, T Jonathan; Hempson, Gareth P; Bezeng, Bezeng S; Daru, Barnabas H; Kabongo, Ronny M; Maurin, Olivier; Muasya, A Muthama; van der Bank, Michelle; Bond, William J

    2016-09-20

    Savannas first began to spread across Africa during the Miocene. A major hypothesis for explaining this vegetation change is the increase in C4 grasses, promoting fire. We investigated whether mammals could also have contributed to savanna expansion by using spinescence as a marker of mammal herbivory. Looking at the present distribution of 1,852 tree species, we established that spinescence is mainly associated with two functional types of mammals: large browsers and medium-sized mixed feeders. Using a dated phylogeny for the same tree species, we found that spinescence evolved at least 55 times. The diversification of spiny plants occurred long after the evolution of Afrotherian proboscideans and hyracoids. However, it is remarkably congruent with diversification of bovids, the lineage including the antelope that predominantly browse these plants today. Our findings suggest that herbivore-adapted savannas evolved several million years before fire-maintained savannas and probably, in different environmental conditions. Spiny savannas with abundant mammal herbivores occur in drier climates and on nutrient-rich soils, whereas fire-maintained savannas occur in wetter climates on nutrient-poor soils.

  6. A new perspective on adiposity in a naturally obese mammal

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ortiz, R. M.; Noren, D. P.; Litz, B.; Ortiz, C. L.

    2001-01-01

    Many mammals seasonally reduce body fat due to inherent periods of fasting, which is associated with decreased leptin concentrations. However, no data exist on the correlation between fat mass (FM) and circulating leptin in marine mammals, which have evolved large fat stores as part of their adaptation to periods of prolonged fasting. Therefore, FM was estimated (by tritiated water dilution), and serum leptin and cortisol were measured in 40 northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris) pups early (<1 wk postweaning) and late (6-8 wk postweaning) during their natural, postweaning fast. Body mass (BM) and FM were reduced late; however, percent FM (early: 43.9 +/- 0.5, late: 45.5 +/- 0.5%) and leptin [early: 2.9 +/- 0.1 ng/ml human equivalents (HE), late: 3.0 +/- 0.1 ng/ml HE] did not change. Cortisol increased between early (9.2 +/- 0.5 microg/dl) and late (16.3 +/- 0.9 microg/dl) periods and was significantly and negatively correlated with BM (r = 0.426; P < 0.0001) and FM (r = 0.328; P = 0.003). FM and percent FM were not correlated (P > 0.10) with leptin at either period. The present study suggests that these naturally obese mammals appear to possess a novel cascade for regulating body fat that includes cortisol. The lack of a correlation between leptin and FM may reflect the different functions of fat between terrestrial and marine mammals.

  7. Immunotoxic effects of environmental pollutants in marine mammals.

    PubMed

    Desforges, Jean-Pierre W; Sonne, Christian; Levin, Milton; Siebert, Ursula; De Guise, Sylvain; Dietz, Rune

    2016-01-01

    Due to their marine ecology and life-history, marine mammals accumulate some of the highest levels of environmental contaminants of all wildlife. Given the increasing prevalence and severity of diseases in marine wildlife, it is imperative to understand how pollutants affect the immune system and consequently disease susceptibility. Advancements and adaptations of analytical techniques have facilitated marine mammal immunotoxicology research. Field studies, captive-feeding experiments and in vitro laboratory studies with marine mammals have associated exposure to environmental pollutants, most notable polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), organochlorine pesticides and heavy metals, to alterations of both the innate and adaptive arms of immune systems, which include aspects of cellular and humoral immunity. For marine mammals, reported immunotoxicology endpoints fell into several major categories: immune tissue histopathology, haematology/circulating immune cell populations, functional immune assays (lymphocyte proliferation, phagocytosis, respiratory burst, and natural killer cell activity), immunoglobulin production, and cytokine gene expression. Lymphocyte proliferation is by far the most commonly used immune assay, with studies using different organic pollutants and metals predominantly reporting immunosuppressive effects despite the many differences in study design and animal life history. Using combined field and laboratory data, we determined effect threshold levels for suppression of lymphocyte proliferation to be between b0.001-10 ppm for PCBs, 0.002-1.3 ppm for Hg, 0.009-0.06 for MeHg, and 0.1-2.4 for cadmium in polar bears and several pinniped and cetacean species. Similarly, thresholds for suppression of phagocytosis were 0.6-1.4 and 0.08-1.9 ppm for PCBs and mercury, respectively. Although data are lacking for many important immune endpoints and mechanisms of specific immune alterations are not well understood, this review revealed a systemic suppression of

  8. Seeking verisimilitude in a class: a systematic review of evidence that the criterial clinical symptoms of schizophrenia are taxonic.

    PubMed

    Linscott, Richard J; Allardyce, Judith; van Os, Jim

    2010-07-01

    This review examines whether there is evidence that the criterion symptoms of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (Fourth Edition) (DSM-IV) schizophrenia are taxonic--that schizophrenia is not part of a single distribution of normality. Two taxometric methods, coherent cut kinetics (CCK) and latent variable modeling (LVM), are demonstrated to be sensitive to latent classes and, therefore, were regarded as providing relevant statistical evidence. A systematic literature search identified 24 articles describing analyses of 28 participant cohorts in which CCK or LVM methods were used with one or more criterion symptoms of schizophrenia. Virtually all analyses yielded results that, on first impression, favored taxonic over dimensional interpretations of the latent structure of schizophrenia. However, threats to the internal and external validity of these studies--including biased or inadequate analyses, violation of statistical assumptions, inadequate indicator screening, and the introduction of systematic error through recruitment and sampling--critically undermine this body of work. Uncertainties about the potential effects of perceptual biases, unimodal assessment, and item parceling are also identified, as are limitations in seeking to validate classes with single or double dissociations of outcomes. We conclude that there is no reason to seriously doubt a single-distribution model of schizophrenia because there is no evidence that provides a serious test of this null hypothesis. A second fundamental question remains outstanding: is schizophrenia truly a group of schizophrenias, with taxonic divisions separating its types? We make design and analysis suggestions for future research addressing these questions.

  9. NITROGEN OUTPUTS OF SMALL MAMMALS FROM FECAL AND URINE DEPOSITION: IMPLICATIONS FOR NITROGEN CYCLING

    EPA Science Inventory

    The contribution of small mammals in nitrogen cycling is poorly understood and could have reverberations back to the producer community by maintaining or even magnifying increased nitrogen availability. Our objective was to model nitrogen outputs (deposition of feces and urine) ...

  10. Implications of invasion by Juniperus virginiana on small mammals in the southern Great Plains

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Horncastle, V.J.; Hellgren, E.C.; Mayer, P.M.; Ganguli, A.C.; Engle, David M.; Leslie, David M.

    2005-01-01

    Changes in landscape cover in the Great Plains are resulting from the range expansion and invasion of eastern red cedar (Juniperus virginiana). By altering the landscape and local vegetation, red cedar is changing the structure and function of habitat for small mammals. We examined effects of invasion by eastern red cedar on small mammals in 3 plant communities (tallgrass prairie, old field, and cross-timbers forest) in the cross-timbers ecoregion in Oklahoma. We sampled small mammals seasonally from May 2001 to August 2002 by using Sherman live traps and mark-recapture techniques on 3.24-ha, 450-trap grids in each plant community. We sampled vegetation in two hundred twenty-five 12 x 12-m cells within each grid. The structure of the small-mammal community differed among the 3 habitat types, with higher species diversity and richness in the tallgrass-prairie and old-field sites. Overall, the small-mammal community shifted along a gradient of increasing eastern red cedar. In the old-field and tallgrass-prairie plots, occurrence of grassland mammals decreased with increasing red cedar, whereas only 1 woodland mammal species increased. In the cross-timbers forest site, percent woody cover (<1 m in height), rather than cover of red cedar, was the most important factor affecting woodland mammal species. Examination of our data suggests that an increase in overstory cover from 0% to 30% red cedar can change a species-rich prairie community to a depauperate community dominated by 1 species, Peromyscus leucopus. Losses in species diversity and changes in mammal distribution paralleled those seen in avian communities invaded by eastern red cedar. Our results highlight ecological effects of invasion by eastern red cedar on diversity and function at multiple trophic levels. ?? 2005 American Society of Mammalogists.

  11. Reconsidering the evolution of brain, cognition, and behavior in birds and mammals

    PubMed Central

    Willemet, Romain

    2013-01-01

    Despite decades of research, some of the most basic issues concerning the extraordinarily complex brains and behavior of birds and mammals, such as the factors responsible for the diversity of brain size and composition, are still unclear. This is partly due to a number of conceptual and methodological issues. Determining species and group differences in brain composition requires accounting for the presence of taxon-cerebrotypes and the use of precise statistical methods. The role of allometry in determining brain variables should be revised. In particular, bird and mammalian brains appear to have evolved in response to a variety of selective pressures influencing both brain size and composition. “Brain” and “cognition” are indeed meta-variables, made up of the variables that are ecologically relevant and evolutionarily selected. External indicators of species differences in cognition and behavior are limited by the complexity of these differences. Indeed, behavioral differences between species and individuals are caused by cognitive and affective components. Although intra-species variability forms the basis of species evolution, some of the mechanisms underlying individual differences in brain and behavior appear to differ from those between species. While many issues have persisted over the years because of a lack of appropriate data or methods to test them; several fallacies, particularly those related to the human brain, reflect scientists' preconceptions. The theoretical framework on the evolution of brain, cognition, and behavior in birds and mammals should be reconsidered with these biases in mind. PMID:23847570

  12. The origin and early radiation of the therapsid mammal-like reptiles: a palaeobiological hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Kemp, T S

    2006-07-01

    The replacement of the basal synapsid pelycosaurs by the more 'mammal-like' therapsids in the Permian was an important event in the history of tetrapods because it initiated the eventual transition to the mammals. It is also an example of taxon replacement in the fossil record that is unusually amenable to explanation, based on a combination of analysis of the biological significance of the inferred character changes, with the stratigraphic, palaeogeographic and palaeoecological circumstances of the time. An hypothesis is presented in which the origin of the therapsids resulted from a correlated progression of character evolution leading to higher levels of metabolic activity and homeostatic regulation of the body. It was a response to the availability of a seasonally arid, savanna-like biome. The subsequent explosive radiation of therapsids was associated with habitat expansion made possible by the Mid-Permian development of geographical continuity between that biome and the temperate biomes. The final extinction of the pelycosaurs was a case of incumbent replacement by the new therapsid lineages.

  13. Asymmetric hybridization in Rhododendron agastum: a hybrid taxon comprising mainly F1s in Yunnan, China

    PubMed Central

    Zha, Hong-Guang; Milne, Richard I.; Sun, Hang

    2010-01-01

    Background and Aims Rhododendron (Ericaceae) is a large woody genus in which hybridization is thought to play an important role in evolution and speciation, particularly in the Sino-Himalaya region where many interfertile species often occur sympatrically. Rhododendron agastum, a putative hybrid species, occurs in China, western Yunnan Province, in mixed populations with R. irroratum and R. delavayi. Methods Material of these taxa from two sites 400 km apart (ZhuJianYuan, ZJY and HuaDianBa, HDB) was examined using cpDNA and internal transcribed spacer (ITS) sequences, and amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) loci, to test the possibility that R. agastum was in fact a hybrid between two of the other species. Chloroplast trnL-F and trnS-trnG sequences together distinguished R. irroratum, R. delavayi and some material of R. decorum, which is also considered a putative parent of R. agastum. Key Results All 14 R. agastum plants from the HDB site had the delavayi cpDNA haplotype, whereas at the ZJY site 17 R. agastum plants had this haplotype and four had the R. irroratum haplotype. R. irroratum and R. delavayi are distinguished by five unequivocal point mutations in their ITS sequences; every R. agastum accession had an additive pattern (double peaks) at each of these sites. Data from AFLP loci were acquired for between ten and 21 plants of each taxon from each site, and were analysed using a Bayesian approach implemented by the program NewHybrids. The program confirmed the identity of all accessions of R. delavayi, and all R. irroratum except one, which was probably a backcross. All R. agastum from HDB and 19 of 21 from ZJY were classified as F1 hybrids; the other two could not be assigned a class. Conclusions Rhododendron agastum represents populations of hybrids between R. irroratum and R. delavayi, which comprise mostly or only F1s, at the two sites examined. The sites differ in that at HDB there was no detected variation in cpDNA type or hybrid class

  14. Long branch attraction, taxon sampling, and the earliest angiosperms: Amborella or monocots?

    PubMed Central

    Stefanović, Saša; Rice, Danny W; Palmer, Jeffrey D

    2004-01-01

    Background Numerous studies, using in aggregate some 28 genes, have achieved a consensus in recognizing three groups of plants, including Amborella, as comprising the basal-most grade of all other angiosperms. A major exception is the recent study by Goremykin et al. (2003; Mol. Biol. Evol. 20:1499–1505), whose analyses of 61 genes from 13 sequenced chloroplast genomes of land plants nearly always found 100% support for monocots as the deepest angiosperms relative to Amborella, Calycanthus, and eudicots. We hypothesized that this conflict reflects a misrooting of angiosperms resulting from inadequate taxon sampling, inappropriate phylogenetic methodology, and rapid evolution in the grass lineage used to represent monocots. Results We used two main approaches to test this hypothesis. First, we sequenced a large number of chloroplast genes from the monocot Acorus and added these plus previously sequenced Acorus genes to the Goremykin et al. (2003) dataset in order to explore the effects of altered monocot sampling under the same analytical conditions used in their study. With Acorus alone representing monocots, strongly supported Amborella-sister trees were obtained in all maximum likelihood and parsimony analyses, and in some distance-based analyses. Trees with both Acorus and grasses gave either a well-supported Amborella-sister topology or else a highly unlikely topology with 100% support for grasses-sister and paraphyly of monocots (i.e., Acorus sister to "dicots" rather than to grasses). Second, we reanalyzed the Goremykin et al. (2003) dataset focusing on methods designed to account for rate heterogeneity. These analyses supported an Amborella-sister hypothesis, with bootstrap support values often conflicting strongly with cognate analyses performed without allowing for rate heterogeneity. In addition, we carried out a limited set of analyses that included the chloroplast genome of Nymphaea, whose position as a basal angiosperm was also, and very recently

  15. Snake mitochondrial genomes: phylogenetic relationships and implications of extended taxon sampling for interpretations of mitogenomic evolution

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    alethinophidians. Conclusions Mitochondrial gene sequence data alone may not be able to robustly resolve basal divergences among alethinophidian snakes. Taxon sampling plays an important role in identifying mitogenomic evolutionary events within snakes, and in testing hypotheses explaining their origin. Dramatic rate shifts in mitogenomic evolution occur within Scolecophidia as well as Alethinophidia, thus falsifying the hypothesis that these shifts in snakes are associated exclusively with evolution of a non-burrowing lifestyle, macrostomatan feeding ecology and/or duplication of the control region, both restricted to alethinophidians among living snakes. PMID:20055998

  16. Assessing Mammal Exposure to Climate Change in the Brazilian Amazon.

    PubMed

    Ribeiro, Bruno R; Sales, Lilian P; De Marco, Paulo; Loyola, Rafael

    2016-01-01

    Human-induced climate change is considered a conspicuous threat to biodiversity in the 21st century. Species' response to climate change depends on their exposition, sensitivity and ability to adapt to novel climates. Exposure to climate change is however uneven within species' range, so that some populations may be more at risk than others. Identifying the regions most exposed to climate change is therefore a first and pivotal step on determining species' vulnerability across their geographic ranges. Here, we aimed at quantifying mammal local exposure to climate change across species' ranges. We identified areas in the Brazilian Amazon where mammals will be critically exposed to non-analogue climates in the future with different variables predicted by 15 global circulation climate forecasts. We also built a null model to assess the effectiveness of the Amazon protected areas in buffering the effects of climate change on mammals, using an innovative and more realistic approach. We found that 85% of species are likely to be exposed to non-analogue climatic conditions in more than 80% of their ranges by 2070. That percentage is even higher for endemic mammals; almost all endemic species are predicted to be exposed in more than 80% of their range. Exposure patterns also varied with different climatic variables and seem to be geographically structured. Western and northern Amazon species are more likely to experience temperature anomalies while northeastern species will be more affected by rainfall abnormality. We also observed an increase in the number of critically-exposed species from 2050 to 2070. Overall, our results indicate that mammals might face high exposure to climate change and that protected areas will probably not be efficient enough to avert those impacts.

  17. Assessing Mammal Exposure to Climate Change in the Brazilian Amazon

    PubMed Central

    Ribeiro, Bruno R.; Sales, Lilian P.; De Marco, Paulo; Loyola, Rafael

    2016-01-01

    Human-induced climate change is considered a conspicuous threat to biodiversity in the 21st century. Species’ response to climate change depends on their exposition, sensitivity and ability to adapt to novel climates. Exposure to climate change is however uneven within species’ range, so that some populations may be more at risk than others. Identifying the regions most exposed to climate change is therefore a first and pivotal step on determining species’ vulnerability across their geographic ranges. Here, we aimed at quantifying mammal local exposure to climate change across species’ ranges. We identified areas in the Brazilian Amazon where mammals will be critically exposed to non-analogue climates in the future with different variables predicted by 15 global circulation climate forecasts. We also built a null model to assess the effectiveness of the Amazon protected areas in buffering the effects of climate change on mammals, using an innovative and more realistic approach. We found that 85% of species are likely to be exposed to non-analogue climatic conditions in more than 80% of their ranges by 2070. That percentage is even higher for endemic mammals; almost all endemic species are predicted to be exposed in more than 80% of their range. Exposure patterns also varied with different climatic variables and seem to be geographically structured. Western and northern Amazon species are more likely to experience temperature anomalies while northeastern species will be more affected by rainfall abnormality. We also observed an increase in the number of critically-exposed species from 2050 to 2070. Overall, our results indicate that mammals might face high exposure to climate change and that protected areas will probably not be efficient enough to avert those impacts. PMID:27829036

  18. Large Mesozoic mammals fed on young dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Hu, Yaoming; Meng, Jin; Wang, Yuanqing; Li, Chuankui

    2005-01-13

    Mesozoic mammals are commonly portrayed as shrew- or rat-sized animals that were mainly insectivorous, probably nocturnal and lived in the shadow of dinosaurs. The largest known Mesozoic mammal represented by substantially complete remains is Repenomamus robustus, a triconodont mammal from the Lower Cretaceous of Liaoning, China. An adult individual of R. robustus was the size of a Virginia opossum. Here we report a new species of the genus, represented by a skeleton with most of the skull and postcranium preserved in articulation. The new species is 50% larger than R. robustus in skull length. In addition, stomach contents associated with a skeleton of R. robustus reveal remains of a juvenile Psittacosaurus, a ceratopsian dinosaur. Our discoveries constitute the first direct evidence that some triconodont mammals were carnivorous and fed on small vertebrates, including young dinosaurs, and also show that Mesozoic mammals had a much greater range of body sizes than previously known. We suggest that Mesozoic mammals occupied diverse niches and that some large mammals probably competed with dinosaurs for food and territory.

  19. Dengue infection in neotropical forest mammals.

    PubMed

    de Thoisy, Benoît; Lacoste, Vincent; Germain, Adeline; Muñoz-Jordán, Jorge; Colón, Candimar; Mauffrey, Jean-François; Delaval, Marguerite; Catzeflis, François; Kazanji, Mirdad; Matheus, Séverine; Dussart, Philippe; Morvan, Jacques; Setién, Alvaro Aguilar; Deparis, Xavier; Lavergne, Anne

    2009-04-01

    In South America, dengue is the arbovirus-transmitted disease with the highest incidence. Unlike other arboviruses, wild mammals have no confirmed role in the cycle of dengue in the neotropics, although serological studies have suggested a possible secondary amplification cycle involving mammals other than nonhuman primates. In French Guiana, where all four serotypes (DENV-1, DENV-2, DENV-3, DENV-4) are present, the disease is endemic with outbreak events. To determine whether wild mammals can be infected by DENV, rodents, marsupials, and bats were captured over several periods, from 2001 to 2007, at two sites. The first location is a secondary forest surrounded by an urban area where dengue is endemic. The second location is a forest edge site where the disease has not yet emerged. A total of 10,000 trap-nights were performed and 616 mammals were captured. RNAs representing the four DENV serotypes were detected at both sites by reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction in the livers and/or sera of 92 mammals belonging to 14 out of 32 species distributed among all the orders investigated: Rodentia (33 positive/146 tested), Marsupialia (40/318), and Chiroptera (19/152). Sequence analyses of a portion of the capsid and premembrane junction revealed that mammal strains of DENV-1, DENV-2, DENV-3, and DENV-4 had only 92.6%, 89%, 95%, and 95.8% identity, respectively, with strains circulating in the human population during the same periods. Regarding DENV-2, strains related (99% identity) to those responsible for an epidemic event in humans in French Guiana concurrent to the capture sessions were also evidenced, suggesting that wild mammals in edge habitats can be infected by circulating human strains. Our results demonstrate, for the first time, that neotropical wild mammals can be infected with dengue virus. The question of whether mammals maintain DENV in enzootic cycles and can play a role in its reemergence in human populations remains to be answered.

  20. Habitat patterns in a small mammal community

    SciTech Connect

    Kitchings, J.T.; Levy, D.J.

    1981-11-01

    Microhabitat relationships between four sympatric small mammal species (Peromyscus leucopus, Ochrotomys nuttalli, Blarina brevicauda, and Tamias striatus) were examined to determine if their discriminant analysis of small mammal habitat represented a unique habitat utilization pattern for a specific small mammal community. The authors concluded that habitat is only one of many dimensions to be considered when studying the interactions of sympatric species. Reproductive strategy, activity patterns, and other factors make up the n-dimensional hyperspace of an animal's niche. Thus differences in habitat usage alone cannot be used to determine niche overlap and competition between species. (JMT)

  1. Marine mammals from the Miocene of Panama

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uhen, Mark D.; Coates, Anthony G.; Jaramillo, Carlos A.; Montes, Camilo; Pimiento, Catalina; Rincon, Aldo; Strong, Nikki; Velez-Juarbe, Jorge

    2010-12-01

    Panama has produced an abundance of Neogene marine fossils both invertebrate (mollusks, corals, microfossils etc.) and vertebrate (fish, land mammals etc.), but marine mammals have not been previously reported. Here we describe a cetacean thoracic vertebra from the late Miocene Tobabe Formation, a partial cetacean rib from the late Miocene Gatun Formation, and a sirenian caudal vertebra and rib fragments from the early Miocene Culebra Formation. These finds suggest that Central America may yet provide additional fossil marine mammal specimens that will help us to understand the evolution, and particularly the biogeography of these groups.

  2. Running and Breathing in Mammals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bramble, Dennis M.; Carrier, David R.

    1983-01-01

    Mechanical constraints appear to require that locomotion and breathing be synchronized in running mammals. Phase locking of limb and respiratory frequency has now been recorded during treadmill running in jackrabbits and during locomotion on solid ground in dogs, horses, and humans. Quadrupedal species normally synchronize the locomotor and respiratory cycles at a constant ratio of 1:1 (strides per breath) in both the trot and gallop. Human runners differ from quadrupeds in that while running they employ several phase-locked patterns (4:1, 3:1, 2:1, 1:1, 5:2, and 3:2), although a 2:1 coupling ratio appears to be favored. Even though the evolution of bipedal gait has reduced the mechanical constraints on respiration in man, thereby permitting greater flexibility in breathing pattern, it has seemingly not eliminated the need for the synchronization of respiration and body motion during sustained running. Flying birds have independently achieved phase-locked locomotor and respiratory cycles. This hints that strict locomotor-respiratory coupling may be a vital factor in the sustained aerobic exercise of endothermic vertebrates, especially those in which the stresses of locomotion tend to deform the thoracic complex.

  3. Passive electroreception in aquatic mammals.

    PubMed

    Czech-Damal, Nicole U; Dehnhardt, Guido; Manger, Paul; Hanke, Wolf

    2013-06-01

    Passive electroreception is a sensory modality in many aquatic vertebrates, predominantly fishes. Using passive electroreception, the animal can detect and analyze electric fields in its environment. Most electric fields in the environment are of biogenic origin, often produced by prey items. These electric fields can be relatively strong and can be a highly valuable source of information for a predator, as underlined by the fact that electroreception has evolved multiple times independently. The only mammals that possess electroreception are the platypus (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) and the echidnas (Tachyglossidae) from the monotreme order, and, recently discovered, the Guiana dolphin (Sotalia guianensis) from the cetacean order. Here we review the morphology, function and origin of the electroreceptors in the two aquatic species, the platypus and the Guiana dolphin. The morphology shows certain similarities, also similar to ampullary electroreceptors in fishes, that provide cues for the search for electroreceptors in more vertebrate and invertebrate species. The function of these organs appears to be very similar. Both species search for prey animals in low-visibility conditions or while digging in the substrate, and sensory thresholds are within one order of magnitude. The electroreceptors in both species are innervated by the trigeminal nerve. The origin of the accessory structures, however, is completely different; electroreceptors in the platypus have developed from skin glands, in the Guiana dolphin, from the vibrissal system.

  4. Microparasites and Placental Invasiveness in Eutherian Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Capellini, Isabella; Nunn, Charles L.; Barton, Robert A.

    2015-01-01

    Placental invasiveness—the number of maternal tissue layers separating fetal tissues from maternal blood—is variable across mammalian species. Although this diversity is likely to be functionally important, variation in placental invasiveness remains unexplained. Here we test the hypothesis that increased risk of transplacental transmission of pathogens from the mother to the fetus promotes the evolution of non-invasive placentation, the most likely derived condition in eutherian mammals. Specifically, we predict that non-invasive placentation is associated with increased microparasite species richness relative to more invasive placental types, based on the assumption that higher numbers of microparasites in a population reflects greater risk of transplacental transmission to fetuses. As predicted, higher bacteria species richness is associated with non-invasive placentation. Protozoa species richness, however, shows the opposite pattern. Because invasive placentae facilitate the transfer of maternal antibodies to the fetus, we propose that the ancestral condition of invasive placentation is retained under selection for protection of newborns from higher risk of postnatal protozoan infection. Hence, our findings suggest that a tradeoff exists between protection against bacterial infection prenatally and protozoan infection postnatally. Future studies are needed to investigate how maternal prevalence of infection and the relative pre- versus postnatal risk of fetal infection by different microparasite groups vary among mammalian hosts in relation to placental invasiveness. PMID:26168031

  5. Ecological correlates of extra-group paternity in mammals.

    PubMed

    Isvaran, Kavita; Clutton-Brock, Tim

    2007-01-22

    Extra-group paternity (EGP) can form an important part of the mating system in birds and mammals. However, our present understanding of its extent and ecology comes primarily from birds. Here, we use data from 26 species and phylogenetic comparative methods to explore interspecific variation in EGP in mammals and test prominent ecological hypotheses for this variation. We found extensive EGP (46% of species showed more than 20% EGP), indicating that EGP is likely to play an important role in the mating system and the dynamics of sexual selection in mammals. Variation in EGP was most closely correlated with the length of the mating season. As the length of the mating season increased, EGP declined, suggesting that it is increasingly difficult for males to monopolize their social mates when mating seasons are short and overlap among females in oestrus is likely to be high. EGP was secondarily correlated with the number of females in a breeding group, consistent with the idea that as female clustering increases, males are less able to monopolize individual females. Finally, EGP was not related to social mating system, suggesting that the opportunities for the extra-group fertilizations and the payoffs involved do not consistently vary with social mating system.

  6. Impacts of roads and hunting on central African rainforest mammals.

    PubMed

    Laurance, William E; Croes, Barbara M; Tchignoumba, Landry; Lahm, Sally A; Alonso, Alfonso; Lee, Michelle E; Campbell, Patrick; Ondzeano, Claude

    2006-08-01

    Road expansion and associated increases in bunting pressure are a rapidly growing threat to African tropical wildlife. In the rainforests of southern Gabon, we compared abundances of larger (>1 kg) mammal species at varying distances from forest roads and between hunted and unhunted treatments (comparing a 130-km2 oil concession that was almost entirely protected from bunting with nearby areas outside the concession that had moderate hunting pressure). At each of 12 study sites that were evenly divided between hunted and unhunted areas, we established standardized 1-km transects at five distances (50, 300, 600, 900, and 1200 m) from an unpaved road, and then repeatedly surveyed mammals during the 2004 dry and wet seasons. Hunting had the greatest impact on duikers (Cephalophus spp.), forest buffalo (Syncerus caffer nanus), and red river hogs (Potamochoerus porcus), which declined in abundance outside the oil concession, and lesser effects on lowland gorillas (Gorilla gorilla gorilla) and carnivores. Roads depressed abundances of duikers, sitatungas (Tragelaphus spekei gratus), and forest elephants (Loxondonta africana cyclotis), with avoidance of roads being stronger outside than inside the concession. Five monkey species showed little response to roads or hunting, whereas some rodents and pangolins increased in abundance outside the concession, possibly in response to greater forest disturbance. Our findings suggest that even moderate hunting pressure can markedly alter the structure of mammal communities in central Africa. Roads had the greatest impacts on large and small ungulates, with the magnitude of road avoidance increasing with local hunting pressure.

  7. A Mesozoic gliding mammal from northeastern China.

    PubMed

    Meng, Jin; Hu, Yaoming; Wang, Yuanqing; Wang, Xiaolin; Li, Chuankui

    2006-12-14

    Gliding flight has independently evolved many times in vertebrates. Direct evidence of gliding is rare in fossil records and is unknown in mammals from the Mesozoic era. Here we report a new Mesozoic mammal from Inner Mongolia, China, that represents a previously unknown group characterized by a highly specialized insectivorous dentition and a sizable patagium (flying membrane) for gliding flight. The patagium is covered with dense hair and supported by an elongated tail and limbs; the latter also bear many features adapted for arboreal life. This discovery extends the earliest record of gliding flight for mammals to at least 70 million years earlier in geological history, and demonstrates that early mammals were diverse in their locomotor strategies and lifestyles; they had experimented with an aerial habit at about the same time as, if not earlier than, when birds endeavoured to exploit the sky.

  8. Ocean Disposal of Marine Mammal Carcasses

    EPA Pesticide Factsheets

    Ocean dumping of marine mammal carcasses is allowed with a permit issued by EPA under the Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act. Includes permit information, potential environmental impacts, and instructions for getting the general permit.

  9. Negative effects of an exotic grass invasion on small-mammal communities.

    PubMed

    Freeman, Eric D; Sharp, Tiffanny R; Larsen, Randy T; Knight, Robert N; Slater, Steven J; McMillan, Brock R

    2014-01-01

    Exotic invasive species can directly and indirectly influence natural ecological communities. Cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) is non-native to the western United States and has invaded large areas of the Great Basin. Changes to the structure and composition of plant communities invaded by cheatgrass likely have effects at higher trophic levels. As a keystone guild in North American deserts, granivorous small mammals drive and maintain plant diversity. Our objective was to assess potential effects of invasion by cheatgrass on small-mammal communities. We sampled small-mammal and plant communities at 70 sites (Great Basin, Utah). We assessed abundance and diversity of the small-mammal community, diversity of the plant community, and the percentage of cheatgrass cover and shrub species. Abundance and diversity of the small-mammal community decreased with increasing abundance of cheatgrass. Similarly, cover of cheatgrass remained a significant predictor of small-mammal abundance even after accounting for the loss of the shrub layer and plant diversity, suggesting that there are direct and indirect effects of cheatgrass. The change in the small-mammal communities associated with invasion of cheatgrass likely has effects through higher and lower trophic levels and has the potential to cause major changes in ecosystem structure and function.

  10. Negative Effects of an Exotic Grass Invasion on Small-Mammal Communities

    PubMed Central

    Freeman, Eric D.; Sharp, Tiffanny R.; Larsen, Randy T.; Knight, Robert N.; Slater, Steven J.; McMillan, Brock R.

    2014-01-01

    Exotic invasive species can directly and indirectly influence natural ecological communities. Cheatgrass (Bromus tectorum) is non-native to the western United States and has invaded large areas of the Great Basin. Changes to the structure and composition of plant communities invaded by cheatgrass likely have effects at higher trophic levels. As a keystone guild in North American deserts, granivorous small mammals drive and maintain plant diversity. Our objective was to assess potential effects of invasion by cheatgrass on small-mammal communities. We sampled small-mammal and plant communities at 70 sites (Great Basin, Utah). We assessed abundance and diversity of the small-mammal community, diversity of the plant community, and the percentage of cheatgrass cover and shrub species. Abundance and diversity of the small-mammal community decreased with increasing abundance of cheatgrass. Similarly, cover of cheatgrass remained a significant predictor of small-mammal abundance even after accounting for the loss of the shrub layer and plant diversity, suggesting that there are direct and indirect effects of cheatgrass. The change in the small-mammal communities associated with invasion of cheatgrass likely has effects through higher and lower trophic levels and has the potential to cause major changes in ecosystem structure and function. PMID:25269073

  11. Deconstructing mammal dispersals and faunal dynamics in SW Europe during the Quaternary

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Palombo, Maria Rita

    2014-07-01

    This research aims to investigate the relationships between climate change and faunal dynamics in south-west Europe, disentangling the asynchronous and diachronous dispersal bioevents of large mammals across geographical and ecological boundaries, analysing biodiversity and its changes through time. The analysis of local versus regional biological dynamics may shed new light on whether turnovers and ecological and evolutionary changes developed because of global climate changes and related phenomena, or because of intrinsic biological factors. The SW European Quaternary fossil record is particularly suitable for studying the role of climate change at local and regional levels because of the complex physiographic and climatic heterogeneity of the study area, the presence of important geographical/ecological barriers and the complex history of invasions of species of varying geographical origin and provenance. The data base consists of taxonomically revised lists of large mammal species from selected SW European local faunal assemblages ranging in age from the Early to the late Middle Pleistocene (middle Villafranchian to early Aurelian European Land Mammal Ages). The new biochronological scheme proposed here allows for the comparison of local turnovers and biodiversity trends, yielding a better understanding of the action of geographical/ecological barriers that either prevented the range of some taxa from reaching some regions or caused delays in the dispersal of a taxon in some territories. The results obtained provide evidence that major environmental perturbations, triggering dispersal events and removing keystone species, modified the structure of the pre-existing mammalian faunas, merging previously independently-evolved taxa into new palaeo-communities. The coupled action of climatic changes and internal biotic dynamics thus caused the Quaternary SW European faunal complexes to significantly restructure. Diachroneity in local turnover across the study area

  12. Advances in exotic mammal clinical therapeutics.

    PubMed

    Hawkins, Michelle G

    2015-05-01

    It is important that veterinarians treating exotic companion mammals stay abreast of the latest developments relating to medications and drug delivery approaches for safety, efficacy and welfare issues. Sustained release formulations of commonly used drugs as well as newer routes for administration of therapeutic agents allow the veterinarian treating exotic companion mammals to reduce the stress associated with drug administration. Interactions can occur between vehicle and drugs when formulations are compounded, therefore research studies are warranted regarding potential problems associated with these formulations.

  13. Genomic imprinting mechanisms in mammals.

    PubMed

    Ideraabdullah, Folami Y; Vigneau, Sebastien; Bartolomei, Marisa S

    2008-12-01

    Genomic imprinting is a form of epigenetic gene regulation that results in expression from a single allele in a parent-of-origin-dependent manner. This form of monoallelic expression affects a small but growing number of genes and is essential to normal mammalian development. Despite extensive studies and some major breakthroughs regarding this intriguing phenomenon, we have not yet fully characterized the underlying molecular mechanisms of genomic imprinting. This is in part due to the complexity of the system in that the epigenetic markings required for proper imprinting must be established in the germline, maintained throughout development, and then erased before being re-established in the next generation's germline. Furthermore, imprinted gene expression is often tissue or stage-specific. It has also become clear that while imprinted loci across the genome seem to rely consistently on epigenetic markings of DNA methylation and/or histone modifications to discern parental alleles, the regulatory activities underlying these markings vary among loci. Here, we discuss different modes of imprinting regulation in mammals and how perturbations of these systems result in human disease. We focus on the mechanism of genomic imprinting mediated by insulators as is present at the H19/Igf2 locus, and by non-coding RNA present at the Igf2r and Kcnq1 loci. In addition to imprinting mechanisms at autosomal loci, what is known about imprinted X-chromosome inactivation and how it compares to autosomal imprinting is also discussed. Overall, this review summarizes many years of imprinting research, while pointing out exciting new discoveries that further elucidate the mechanism of genomic imprinting, and speculating on areas that require further investigation.

  14. Genomic Imprinting Mechanisms in Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Ideraabdullah, Folami Y.; Vigneau, Sebastien; Bartolomei, Marisa S.

    2008-01-01

    Genomic imprinting is a form of epigenetic gene regulation that results in expression from a single allele in a parent-of-origin-dependent manner. This form of monoallelic expression affects a small but growing number of genes and is essential to normal mammalian development. Despite extensive studies and some major breakthroughs regarding this intriguing phenomenon, we have not yet fully characterized the underlying molecular mechanisms of genomic imprinting. This is in part due to the complexity of the system in that the epigenetic markings required for proper imprinting must be established in the germline, maintained throughout development, and then erased before being re-established in the next generation’s germline. Furthermore, imprinted gene expression is often tissue or stage-specific. It has also become clear that while imprinted loci across the genome seem to rely consistently on epigenetic markings of DNA methylation and/or histone modifications to discern parental alleles, the regulatory activities underlying these markings vary among loci. Here, we discuss different modes of imprinting regulation in mammals and how perturbations of these systems result in human disease. We focus mostly on the mechanism of genomic imprinting mediated by insulators as is present at the H19/Igf2 locus, and by non-coding RNA present at the Igf2r and Kcnq1 loci. In addition to imprinting mechanisms at autosomal loci, what is known about imprinted X-chromosome inactivation and how it compares to autosomal imprinting is also discussed. Overall, this review summarizes the many years of imprinting research, while pointing out exciting new discoveries that further elucidate the mechanism of genomic imprinting, and speculating on areas that require further investigation. PMID:18778719

  15. Climate change and seasonal reproduction in mammals.

    PubMed

    Bronson, F H

    2009-11-27

    Seasonal reproduction is common among mammals at all latitudes, even in the deep tropics. This paper (i) discusses the neuroendocrine pathways via which foraging conditions and predictive cues such as photoperiod enforce seasonality, (ii) considers the kinds of seasonal challenges mammals actually face in natural habitats, and (iii) uses the information thus generated to suggest how seasonal reproduction might be influenced by global climate change. Food availability and ambient temperature determine energy balance, and variation in energy balance is the ultimate cause of seasonal breeding in all mammals and the proximate cause in many. Photoperiodic cueing is common among long-lived mammals from the highest latitudes down to the mid-tropics. It is much less common in shorter lived mammals at all latitudes. An unknown predictive cue triggers reproduction in some desert and dry grassland species when it rains. The available information suggests that as our climate changes the small rodents of the world may adapt rather easily but the longer lived mammals whose reproduction is regulated by photoperiod may not do so well. A major gap in our knowledge concerns the tropics; that is where most species live and where we have the least understanding of how reproduction is regulated by environmental factors.

  16. Species longevity in North American fossil mammals.

    PubMed

    Prothero, Donald R

    2014-08-01

    Species longevity in the fossil record is related to many paleoecological variables and is important to macroevolutionary studies, yet there are very few reliable data on average species durations in Cenozoic fossil mammals. Many of the online databases (such as the Paleobiology Database) use only genera of North American Cenozoic mammals and there are severe problems because key groups (e.g. camels, oreodonts, pronghorns and proboscideans) have no reliable updated taxonomy, with many invalid genera and species and/or many undescribed genera and species. Most of the published datasets yield species duration estimates of approximately 2.3-4.3 Myr for larger mammals, with small mammals tending to have shorter species durations. My own compilation of all the valid species durations in families with updated taxonomy (39 families, containing 431 genera and 998 species, averaging 2.3 species per genus) yields a mean duration of 3.21 Myr for larger mammals. This breaks down to 4.10-4.39 Myr for artiodactyls, 3.14-3.31 Myr for perissodactyls and 2.63-2.95 Myr for carnivorous mammals (carnivorans plus creodonts). These averages are based on a much larger, more robust dataset than most previous estimates, so they should be more reliable for any studies that need species longevity to be accurately estimated.

  17. A Jurassic mammal from South America.

    PubMed

    Rauhut, Oliver W M; Martin, Thomas; Ortiz-Jaureguizar, Edgardo; Puerta, Pablo

    2002-03-14

    The Jurassic period is an important stage in early mammalian evolution, as it saw the first diversification of this group, leading to the stem lineages of monotremes and modern therian mammals. However, the fossil record of Jurassic mammals is extremely poor, particularly in the southern continents. Jurassic mammals from Gondwanaland are so far only known from Tanzania and Madagascar, and from trackway evidence from Argentina. Here we report a Jurassic mammal represented by a dentary, which is the first, to our knowledge, from South America. The tiny fossil from the Middle to Late Jurassic of Patagonia is a representative of the recently termed Australosphenida, a group of mammals from Gondwanaland that evolved tribosphenic molars convergently to the Northern Hemisphere Tribosphenida, and probably gave rise to the monotremes. Together with other mammalian evidence from the Southern Hemisphere, the discovery of this new mammal indicates that the Australosphenida had diversified and were widespread in Gondwanaland well before the end of the Jurassic, and that mammalian faunas from the Southern Hemisphere already showed a marked distinction from their northern counterparts by the Middle to Late Jurassic.

  18. Disentangling effects of abiotic factors and biotic interactions on cross-taxon congruence in species turnover patterns of plants, moths and beetles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Duan, Meichun; Liu, Yunhui; Yu, Zhenrong; Baudry, Jacques; Li, Liangtao; Wang, Changliu; Axmacher, Jan C.

    2016-04-01

    High cross-taxon congruence in species diversity patterns is essential for the use of surrogate taxa in biodiversity conservation, but presence and strength of congruence in species turnover patterns, and the relative contributions of abiotic environmental factors and biotic interaction towards this congruence, remain poorly understood. In our study, we used variation partitioning in multiple regressions to quantify cross-taxon congruence in community dissimilarities of vascular plants, geometrid and arciinid moths and carabid beetles, subsequently investigating their respective underpinning by abiotic factors and biotic interactions. Significant cross-taxon congruence observed across all taxon pairs was linked to their similar responses towards elevation change. Changes in the vegetation composition were closely linked to carabid turnover, with vegetation structure and associated microclimatic conditions proposed causes of this link. In contrast, moth assemblages appeared to be dominated by generalist species whose turnover was weakly associated with vegetation changes. Overall, abiotic factors exerted a stronger influence on cross-taxon congruence across our study sites than biotic interactions. The weak congruence in turnover observed particularly between plants and moths highlights the importance of multi-taxon approaches based on groupings of taxa with similar turnovers, rather than the use of single surrogate taxa or environmental proxies, in biodiversity assessments.

  19. Disentangling effects of abiotic factors and biotic interactions on cross-taxon congruence in species turnover patterns of plants, moths and beetles

    PubMed Central

    Duan, Meichun; Liu, Yunhui; Yu, Zhenrong; Baudry, Jacques; Li, Liangtao; Wang, Changliu; Axmacher, Jan C.

    2016-01-01

    High cross-taxon congruence in species diversity patterns is essential for the use of surrogate taxa in biodiversity conservation, but presence and strength of congruence in species turnover patterns, and the relative contributions of abiotic environmental factors and biotic interaction towards this congruence, remain poorly understood. In our study, we used variation partitioning in multiple regressions to quantify cross-taxon congruence in community dissimilarities of vascular plants, geometrid and arciinid moths and carabid beetles, subsequently investigating their respective underpinning by abiotic factors and biotic interactions. Significant cross-taxon congruence observed across all taxon pairs was linked to their similar responses towards elevation change. Changes in the vegetation composition were closely linked to carabid turnover, with vegetation structure and associated microclimatic conditions proposed causes of this link. In contrast, moth assemblages appeared to be dominated by generalist species whose turnover was weakly associated with vegetation changes. Overall, abiotic factors exerted a stronger influence on cross-taxon congruence across our study sites than biotic interactions. The weak congruence in turnover observed particularly between plants and moths highlights the importance of multi-taxon approaches based on groupings of taxa with similar turnovers, rather than the use of single surrogate taxa or environmental proxies, in biodiversity assessments. PMID:27032533

  20. Disentangling effects of abiotic factors and biotic interactions on cross-taxon congruence in species turnover patterns of plants, moths and beetles.

    PubMed

    Duan, Meichun; Liu, Yunhui; Yu, Zhenrong; Baudry, Jacques; Li, Liangtao; Wang, Changliu; Axmacher, Jan C

    2016-04-01

    High cross-taxon congruence in species diversity patterns is essential for the use of surrogate taxa in biodiversity conservation, but presence and strength of congruence in species turnover patterns, and the relative contributions of abiotic environmental factors and biotic interaction towards this congruence, remain poorly understood. In our study, we used variation partitioning in multiple regressions to quantify cross-taxon congruence in community dissimilarities of vascular plants, geometrid and arciinid moths and carabid beetles, subsequently investigating their respective underpinning by abiotic factors and biotic interactions. Significant cross-taxon congruence observed across all taxon pairs was linked to their similar responses towards elevation change. Changes in the vegetation composition were closely linked to carabid turnover, with vegetation structure and associated microclimatic conditions proposed causes of this link. In contrast, moth assemblages appeared to be dominated by generalist species whose turnover was weakly associated with vegetation changes. Overall, abiotic factors exerted a stronger influence on cross-taxon congruence across our study sites than biotic interactions. The weak congruence in turnover observed particularly between plants and moths highlights the importance of multi-taxon approaches based on groupings of taxa with similar turnovers, rather than the use of single surrogate taxa or environmental proxies, in biodiversity assessments.

  1. Classification and identification of marine mammals by their click signatures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Goo, Gee-In

    2003-09-01

    In this paper, the author presents recent findings of applying passive Broadband Bionic Sonar technique to same data files with marine mammal "clicks". Using a resonance detection technique, a number of data files with mammal clicks were analyzed. From these data files, many unique mammal "click" signatures were observed. These results seem to indicate that individual marine mammals can be classified and possibly identified.

  2. 50 CFR 216.83 - Importation of birds or mammals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2012 CFR

    2012-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 10 2012-10-01 2012-10-01 false Importation of birds or mammals. 216.83 Section 216.83 Wildlife and Fisheries NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE, NATIONAL OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC... MAMMALS Pribilof Islands Administration § 216.83 Importation of birds or mammals. No mammals or...

  3. 50 CFR 216.83 - Importation of birds or mammals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2014 CFR

    2014-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 10 2014-10-01 2014-10-01 false Importation of birds or mammals. 216.83 Section 216.83 Wildlife and Fisheries NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE, NATIONAL OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC... MAMMALS Pribilof Islands Administration § 216.83 Importation of birds or mammals. No mammals or...

  4. 50 CFR 216.83 - Importation of birds or mammals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 7 2010-10-01 2010-10-01 false Importation of birds or mammals. 216.83 Section 216.83 Wildlife and Fisheries NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE, NATIONAL OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC... MAMMALS Pribilof Islands Administration § 216.83 Importation of birds or mammals. No mammals or...

  5. 50 CFR 216.83 - Importation of birds or mammals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 9 2011-10-01 2011-10-01 false Importation of birds or mammals. 216.83 Section 216.83 Wildlife and Fisheries NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE, NATIONAL OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC... MAMMALS Pribilof Islands Administration § 216.83 Importation of birds or mammals. No mammals or...

  6. 50 CFR 216.83 - Importation of birds or mammals.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2013 CFR

    2013-10-01

    ... 50 Wildlife and Fisheries 10 2013-10-01 2013-10-01 false Importation of birds or mammals. 216.83 Section 216.83 Wildlife and Fisheries NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE, NATIONAL OCEANIC AND ATMOSPHERIC... MAMMALS Pribilof Islands Administration § 216.83 Importation of birds or mammals. No mammals or...

  7. The evolution of acoustic size exaggeration in terrestrial mammals

    PubMed Central

    Charlton, Benjamin D.; Reby, David

    2016-01-01

    Recent studies have revealed that some mammals possess adaptations that enable them to produce vocal signals with much lower fundamental frequency (F0) and formant frequency spacing (ΔF) than expected for their size. Although these adaptations are assumed to reflect selection pressures for males to lower frequency components and exaggerate body size in reproductive contexts, this hypothesis has not been tested across a broad range of species. Here we show that male terrestrial mammals produce vocal signals with lower ΔF (but not F0) than expected for their size in mating systems with greater sexual size dimorphism. We also reveal that males produce calls with higher than expected F0 and ΔF in species with increased sperm competition. This investigation confirms that sexual selection favours the use of ΔF as an acoustic size exaggerator and supports the notion of an evolutionary trade-off between pre-copulatory signalling displays and sperm production. PMID:27598835

  8. Wet mammals shake at tuned frequencies to dry

    PubMed Central

    Dickerson, Andrew K.; Mills, Zachary G.; Hu, David L.

    2012-01-01

    In cold wet weather, mammals face hypothermia if they cannot dry themselves. By rapidly oscillating their bodies, through a process similar to shivering, furry mammals can dry themselves within seconds. We use high-speed videography and fur particle tracking to characterize the shakes of 33 animals (16 animals species and five dog breeds), ranging over four orders of magnitude in mass from mice to bears. We here report the power law relationship between shaking frequency f and body mass M to be f ∼ M−0.22, which is close to our prediction of f ∼ M−0.19 based upon the balance of centrifugal and capillary forces. We also observe a novel role for loose mammalian dermal tissue: by whipping around the body, it increases the speed of drops leaving the animal and the ensuing dryness relative to tight dermal tissue. PMID:22904256

  9. Enamel structure in some therapsids and mesozoic mammals.

    PubMed

    Osborn, J W; Hillman, J

    1979-11-01

    The distribution of enamel tubules, the shapes and arrangements of prisms, and the orientation of crystals in ground sections from several therapsids and mesozoic mammals have been investigated by conventional and polarizing microscopy. Along each of three separate phylogenetic lines which evolved occluding teeth, there was a progressive increase in the numbers of enamel tubules. In the investigation, the arcade-shaped prisms typical of recent mammals were first seen in material from the Cretaceous period. All the enamels investigated from the Triassic contained columns of crystals, which were deduced as hexagonal. The inner ends of the crystals within each column deviated towards the center of the column. It is concluded that the existence of an interprismatic region provides the most important distinction between prismatic enamels and the hexagonal columns of crystals in the Triassic material.

  10. Stress physiology in marine mammals: how well do they fit the terrestrial model?

    PubMed

    Atkinson, Shannon; Crocker, Daniel; Houser, Dorian; Mashburn, Kendall

    2015-07-01

    Stressors are commonly accepted as the causal factors, either internal or external, that evoke physiological responses to mediate the impact of the stressor. The majority of research on the physiological stress response, and costs incurred to an animal, has focused on terrestrial species. This review presents current knowledge on the physiology of the stress response in a lesser studied group of mammals, the marine mammals. Marine mammals are an artificial or pseudo grouping from a taxonomical perspective, as this group represents several distinct and diverse orders of mammals. However, they all are fully or semi-aquatic animals and have experienced selective pressures that have shaped their physiology in a manner that differs from terrestrial relatives. What these differences are and how they relate to the stress response is an efflorescent topic of study. The identification of the many facets of the stress response is critical to marine mammal management and conservation efforts. Anthropogenic stressors in marine ecosystems, including ocean noise, pollution, and fisheries interactions, are increasing and the dramatic responses of some marine mammals to these stressors have elevated concerns over the impact of human-related activities on a diverse group of animals that are difficult to monitor. This review covers the physiology of the stress response in marine mammals and places it in context of what is known from research on terrestrial mammals, particularly with respect to mediator activity that diverges from generalized terrestrial models. Challenges in conducting research on stress physiology in marine mammals are discussed and ways to overcome these challenges in the future are suggested.

  11. Corridors and olfactory predator cues affect small mammal behavior.

    SciTech Connect

    Brinkerhoff, Robert Jory; Haddad, Nick M.; Orrock, John L.

    2005-03-30

    Abstract The behavior of prey individuals is influenced by a variety of factors including, but not limited to, habitat configuration, risk of predation, and availability of resources, and these habitat-dependent factors may have interactive effects. We studied the responses of mice to an increase in perceived predation risk in a patchy environment to understand how habitat corridors might affect interactions among species in a fragmented landscape. We used a replicated experiment to investigate corridor-mediated prey responses to predator cues in a network of open habitat patches surrounded by a matrix of planted pine forest. Some of the patches were connected by corridors. We used mark–recapture techniques and foraging trays to monitor the movement, behavior, and abundance of small mammals. Predation threat was manipulated in one-half of the replicates by applying an olfactory predator cue. Corridors synchronized small mammal foraging activity among connected patches. Foraging also was inhibited in the presence of an olfactory predator cue but apparently increased in adjacent connected patches. Small mammal abundance did not change as a result of the predator manipulation and was not influenced by the presence of corridors. This study is among the 1st to indicate combined effects of landscape configuration and predation risk on prey behavior. These changes in prey behavior may, in turn, have cascading effects on community dynamics where corridors and differential predation risk influence movement and patch use.

  12. Absorption and ocular deposition of dietary lutein in marine mammals.

    PubMed

    Koutsos, Elizabeth A; Schmitt, Todd; Colitz, Carmen M H; Mazzaro, Lisa

    2013-01-01

    Cataracts and ocular disease are common lesions of marine mammals in zoological collections. Lutein, an oxygenated carotenoid, may have therapeutic or prophylactic effects on ocular disorder. Therefore, this study examined the ability of marine mammals to absorb dietary lutein. Two preliminary trials examined lutein in two forms (beadlet or ester) in a small sample size of marine mammals representing pinnipeds and cetaceans. Lutein was fed daily in tablets providing 0.89-3.6 mg lutein/kg body weight(0.75) per day for 15 days to 2 years. A third study was conducted using lutein beadlet fed at 3.6 mg lutein/kg body weight(0.75) per day for 15-21 days. Blood was analyzed for lutein pre- and postsupplementation. In the preliminary trials, lutein beadlet was observed to result in greater blood lutein levels than lutein esters, and cetaceans had more noticeable responses than pinnipeds. In Study 3, serum lutein and zeaxanthin increased postsupplementation in beluga whales (P < 0.05), and serum lutein tended to increase postsupplementation in dolphins (P < 0.10), but little change was seen in serum lutein in pinnipeds or manatee. Opportunistic retinal samples demonstrated some detectable lutein in the retina of a dolphin and several harp seals. The lutein levels in dolphins after supplementation are similar to those reported in free-ranging animals. Ocular lutein in harp seals demonstrates that ocular deposition occurs despite low circulating lutein levels.

  13. Chlorinated hydrocarbon contaminants in arctic marine mammals.

    PubMed

    Norstrom, R J; Muir, D C

    1994-09-16

    By 1976, the presence of chlorinated hydrocarbon contaminants (CHCs) had been demonstrated in fur seal (Callorhinus ursinus), ringed seal (Phoca hispida), hooded seal (Cystophora cristata), bearded seal (Erignathus barbatus), walrus (Obdobenus rosmarus divergens), beluga (Delphinapterus leucas), porpoise (Phocoena phocoena) and polar bear (Ursus maritimus) in various parts of the Arctic. In spite of this early interest, very little subsequent research on contaminants in Arctic marine mammals was undertaken until the mid-1980s. Since that time, there has been an explosion of interest, resulting in a much expanded data base on contaminants in Arctic marine mammals. Except in the Russian Arctic, data have now been obtained on the temporospatial distribution of PCBs and other contaminants in ringed seal, beluga and polar bear. Contaminants in narwhal (Monodon monoceros) have also now been measured. On a fat weight basis, the sum of DDT-related compounds (S-DDT) and PCB levels are lowest in walrus (< 0.1 microgram/g), followed by ringed seal, (0.1-1 microgram/g range). Levels are an order of magnitude higher in beluga and narwhal (1-10 micrograms/g range). It appears that metabolism and excretion of S-DDT and PCBs may be less efficient in cetaceans, leading to greater biomagnification. Polar bears have similar levels of PCBs as cetaceans (1-10 micrograms/g), but with a much simpler congener pattern. DDE levels are lowest in polar bear, indicating rapid metabolism. Effects of age and sex on residue levels are found for all species where this was measured. Among cetaceans and ringed seal, sexually mature females have lower levels than males due to lactation. Although PCB levels in adult male polar bears are about twice as high as females, there is only a trivial age effect in either sex apart from an initial decrease from birth to sexual maturity (age 0-5). Comparison of levels of S-DDT and PCBs in Arctic beluga and ringed seal with those in beluga in the Gulf of St

  14. Apparatus for enhancing tissue repair in mammals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goodwin, Thomas J. (Inventor); Parker, Clayton R. (Inventor)

    2007-01-01

    An apparatus is disclosed for enhancing tissue repair in mammals, with the apparatus comprising: a sleeve for encircling a portion of a mammalian body part, said sleeve comprising an electrically conductive coil capable of generating an electromagnetic field when an electrical current is applied thereto, means for supporting the sleeve on the mammalian body part; and means for supplying the electrically conductive coil with a square wave time varying electrical current sufficient to create a time varying electromagnetic force of from approximately 0.05 gauss to 0.05 gauss within the interior of the coil in order that when the sleeve is placed on a mammalian body part and the time varying electromagnetic force of from approximately 0.05 gauss to 0.05 gauss is generated on the mammalian body part for an extended period of time, tissue regeneration within the mammalian body part is increased to a rate in excess of the normal tissue regeneration rate that would occur without application of the time varying electromagnetic force.

  15. Isotope analyses of fossil small mammals in karstic sites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Garcia Alix, Antonio; Delgado Huertas, Antonio

    2016-04-01

    Fossil skeletal accumulations in kartstic complexes, such as caves, are quite common, especially during the Pliocene and Quaternary. These fossil assemblages are sometimes difficult to study, as specimens from different ages can be found together (time averaging). The traditional approach to study this kind of paleontological sites was taphonomic (understanding the origin and other factors affecting the bone accumulation) and/or taxonomic (systematic description of the remains). However, other kinds of analyses, such as biogeochemical techniques to reconstruct past diets and environments, are being more frequently used. Small-mammals have a wide geographical distribution, and their remains (bones and teeth) are extensively represented in the fossil record; therefore, isotopic analyses in fossil small-mammals are a powerful tool to reconstruct paleoenvironments. Field samples for small-mammal studies yield large amounts of sediment-residues that need to be reduced in the laboratory (usually by means of diluted hydrochloric or acetic acid). Therefore, samples of fossil small-mammal for isotopic analyses usually receive two different acid treatments: one to reduce the carbonate residue of the sediment, and afterwards another one to remove digenetic carbonates from the ground sample. Those treatments, along with the small size of the remains, may increase the probability of chemical fractionation during those pre-treatment stages. Those acid treatments are even more aggressive in kasrtic fossil localities, as limestone has to be dissolved to extract the small mammal remains. In this abstract, we present the results of two different treatments carried out in limestone from the Pliocene karstic locality of Moreda (Guadix Basin, Spain) and a control sample. One batch of samples were treated with a solution of 1M acetic acid-acetate calcium buffer (ph 4,5), and the rest with diluted acetic acid (at 15% concentration, Ph 2,2), which is the most used to reduce the sediments

  16. Establishing a Marine Mammal Stranding Network in the Bahamas

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2008-01-01

    Marine Mammal Stranding Network in the Bahamas Diane Elaine Claridge Bahamas Marine Mammal Research Organisation P.O. Box AB...are to establish a marine mammal stranding network in the Bahamas to better understand the conservation needs of marine mammals in the Bahamas, with...well as the biology of marine mammals . The stranding network will be structured so that it will become self-sufficient and able to continue into

  17. Effects of corridors on home range sizes and interpatch movements of three small mammal species.

    SciTech Connect

    Mabry, Karen, E.; Barrett, Gary, W.

    2002-04-30

    Mabry, K.E., and G.W. Barrett. 2002. Effects of corridors on home range sizes and interpatch movements of three small mammal species. Landscape Ecol. 17:629-636. Corridors are predicted to benefit populations in patchy habitats by promoting movement, which should increase population densities, gene flow, and recolonization of extinct patch populations. However, few investigators have considered use of the total landscape, particularly the possibility of interpatch movement through matrix habitat, by small mammals. This study compares home range sizes of 3 species of small mammals, the cotton mouse, old field mouse and cotton rat between patches with and without corridors. Corridor presence did not have a statistically significant influence on average home range size. Habitat specialization and sex influenced the probability of an individual moving between 2 patches without corridors. The results of this study suggest that small mammals may be more capable of interpatch movement without corridors than is frequently assumed.

  18. 78 FR 37209 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-06-20

    ... From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XC564 Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Marine Seismic Survey in the Beaufort Sea,...

  19. 75 FR 49709 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-08-13

    ...In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) regulations, notification is hereby given that NMFS has issued an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to Shell Offshore Inc. (Shell) to take, by harassment, small numbers of 8 species of marine mammals incidental to a marine survey program, which includes site clearance and shallow hazards, ice gouge, and strudel scour surveys,......

  20. 75 FR 49759 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-08-13

    ...In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) regulations, notification is hereby given that NMFS has issued an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to Statoil USA E&P Inc. (Statoil) to take, by harassment, small numbers of 12 species of marine mammals incidental to a marine seismic survey program in the Chukchi Sea, Alaska, during the 2010 Arctic open water...

  1. 78 FR 18965 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-03-28

    ... Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to an Exploration Drilling Program in the Chukchi Sea... harassment, incidental to conducting offshore exploration drilling on Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) leases in... small numbers of marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to conducting offshore exploration...

  2. 76 FR 13130 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-03-10

    ... Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Polar Bear Captures AGENCY: National Marine..., incidental to a capture-recapture program of polar bears in the U.S. Chukchi Sea. DATES: Effective March 14... taking, by harassment, of marine mammals incidental to a capture-recapture program of polar bears in...

  3. 76 FR 330 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-01-04

    ... Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Polar Bear Captures AGENCY: National Marine...) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to a capture- recapture program of polar bears in...-recapture program of polar bears in the U.S. Chukchi Sea. NMFS reviewed the USFWS' application...

  4. 76 FR 68974 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-11-07

    ...NMFS received an application from Shell Offshore Inc. (Shell) for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to offshore exploration drilling on Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) leases in the Beaufort Sea, Alaska. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue an IHA to Shell to take, by......

  5. 78 FR 12541 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-02-22

    ...NMFS received an application from ConocoPhillips Company (COP) for an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to offshore exploration drilling on Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) leases in the Chukchi Sea, Alaska. Pursuant to the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS is requesting comments on its proposal to issue an IHA to COP to take, by......

  6. 77 FR 40007 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-07-06

    ...In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) regulations, notification is hereby given that NMFS has issued an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to BP Exploration (Alaska), Inc. (BP) to take, by harassment, small numbers of 10 species of marine mammals incidental to ocean bottom cable (OBC) seismic surveys in the Simpson Lagoon area of the Beaufort Sea, Alaska, during the......

  7. 76 FR 46729 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-08-03

    ...In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) regulations, notification is hereby given that NMFS has issued an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to Statoil USA E&P Inc. (Statoil) to take, by harassment, small numbers of 13 species of marine mammals incidental to shallow hazards and geotechnical surveys in the Chukchi Sea, Alaska, during the 2011 Arctic open-water...

  8. 77 FR 65059 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-10-24

    ...In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) regulations, notification is hereby given that NMFS has issued an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to ION Geophysical (ION) to take, by harassment, small numbers of nine species of marine mammals incidental to in-ice marine seismic surveys in the Beaufort and Chukchi Seas, Alaska, during the fall and winter of...

  9. 78 FR 57368 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals: Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Operations of...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-09-18

    ... Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Operations of Surveillance Towed Array Sensor System Low Frequency... accordance with regulations issued under the Marine Mammal Protection Act, as amended, we hereby give... Surveillance Towed Array Sensor System Low Frequency Active (SURTASS LFA) sonar within the northwest...

  10. 77 FR 51969 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals: Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Operations of...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-08-28

    ... Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Operations of Surveillance Towed Array Sensor System Low Frequency... accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), as amended, and implementing regulations... Low Frequency Active (SURTASS LFA) sonar operations to the Chief of Naval Operations, Department...

  11. 75 FR 51443 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals: Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Operations of...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-08-20

    ... Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Operations of Surveillance Towed Array Sensor System Low Frequency... accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), as amended, and implementing regulations... Low Frequency Active (SURTASS LFA) sonar operations to the Chief of Naval Operations, Department...

  12. 76 FR 51352 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals: Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Operations of...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-08-18

    ... Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Operations of Surveillance Towed Array Sensor System Low Frequency... accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), as amended, and implementing regulations... Low Frequency Active (SURTASS LFA) sonar operations to the Chief of Naval Operations, Department...

  13. 77 FR 27321 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-05-09

    ...In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) regulations, notification is hereby given that NMFS has issued an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to Shell Gulf of Mexico Inc. (Shell) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to offshore exploration drilling on Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) leases in the Chukchi Sea,...

  14. 77 FR 27283 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-05-09

    ...In accordance with the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) regulations, notification is hereby given that NMFS has issued an Incidental Harassment Authorization (IHA) to Shell Offshore Inc. (Shell) to take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to offshore exploration drilling on Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) leases in the Beaufort Sea,...

  15. SPECIATION IN MAMMALS AND THE GENETIC SPECIES CONCEPT

    PubMed Central

    Baker, Robert J.; Bradley, Robert D.

    2009-01-01

    boundaries, the extent to which the integrity of the gene pool is protected, nature of hybridization (if present), and introgression. Genetic data are unique in understanding species because the use of genetic data 1) can quantify genetic divergence from different aspects of the genome (mitochondrial and nuclear genes, protein coding genes, regulatory genes, mobile DNA, microsatellites, chromosomal rearrangements, heterochromatin, etc.); 2) can provide divergence values that increase with time, providing an estimate of time since divergence; 3) can provide a population genetics perspective; 4) is less subject to convergence and parallelism relative to other sets of characters; 5) can identify monophyly, sister taxa, and presence or absence of introgression; and 6) can accurately identify hybrid individuals (kinship and source of hybrid individuals, F1s, backcrosses, direction of hybridization, and in concert with other data identify which hybrids are sterile or fertile). The proposed definition of the Genetic Species Concept is more compatible with a description of biodiversity of mammals than is “reproductively isolated species.” Genetic profiles of mammalian species will result in a genetic description of species and mammalian diversity, and such studies are being accelerated by technological advances that reduce cost and increase speed and efficiency of generating genetic data. We propose that this genetic revolution remain museum- and voucher specimen–based and that new names are based on a holotype (including associated tissues) deposited in an accredited museum. PMID:19890476

  16. Seeking Verisimilitude in a Class: A Systematic Review of Evidence That the Criterial Clinical Symptoms of Schizophrenia Are Taxonic

    PubMed Central

    Linscott, Richard J.; Allardyce, Judith; van Os, Jim

    2010-01-01

    This review examines whether there is evidence that the criterion symptoms of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (Fourth Edition) (DSM-IV) schizophrenia are taxonic—that schizophrenia is not part of a single distribution of normality. Two taxometric methods, coherent cut kinetics (CCK) and latent variable modeling (LVM), are demonstrated to be sensitive to latent classes and, therefore, were regarded as providing relevant statistical evidence. A systematic literature search identified 24 articles describing analyses of 28 participant cohorts in which CCK or LVM methods were used with one or more criterion symptoms of schizophrenia. Virtually all analyses yielded results that, on first impression, favored taxonic over dimensional interpretations of the latent structure of schizophrenia. However, threats to the internal and external validity of these studies—including biased or inadequate analyses, violation of statistical assumptions, inadequate indicator screening, and the introduction of systematic error through recruitment and sampling—critically undermine this body of work. Uncertainties about the potential effects of perceptual biases, unimodal assessment, and item parceling are also identified, as are limitations in seeking to validate classes with single or double dissociations of outcomes. We conclude that there is no reason to seriously doubt a single-distribution model of schizophrenia because there is no evidence that provides a serious test of this null hypothesis. A second fundamental question remains outstanding: is schizophrenia truly a group of schizophrenias, with taxonic divisions separating its types? We make design and analysis suggestions for future research addressing these questions. PMID:19176472

  17. 'Candidatus Phytoplasma tamaricis', a novel taxon discovered in witches'-broom-diseased salt cedar (Tamarix chinensis Lour.).

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yan; Sun, Qingrong; Wei, Wei; Davis, Robert E; Wu, Wei; Liu, Qingzhong

    2009-10-01

    Salt cedar trees with pronounced witches'-broom symptoms were observed in their natural habitat in China. 16S rRNA gene sequences unique to phytoplasmas were detected in every DNA sample extracted from stem and leaf tissues of the symptomatic trees, revealing a direct association between phytoplasma infection and the salt cedar witches'-broom (SCWB) disease. Phylogenetic analysis of the SCWB phytoplasma 16S rRNA gene sequence indicated that the SCWB phytoplasma belonged to a subclade consisting of several mutually distinct 'Candidatus Phytoplasma' taxa including 'Ca. Phytoplasma prunorum', 'Ca. Phytoplasma mali', 'Ca. Phytoplasma pyri' and 'Ca. Phytoplasma spartii'. Pairwise sequence similarity scores calculated from an alignment of near full-length 16S rRNA genes revealed that SCWB phytoplasma shared 96.6 % or less sequence similarity with each previously described or proposed 'Ca. Phytoplasma' taxon, justifying the recognition of SCWB phytoplasma as a novel taxon, 'Candidatus Phytoplasma tamaricis'. The distinct virtual RFLP pattern derived from the SCWB phytoplasma 16S rRNA gene sequence, together with its lower-than-threshold similarity coefficient values with RFLP patterns of any of the 29 previously established groups, supported the recognition of a new 16Sr group, designated 16SrXXX, salt cedar witches'-broom phytoplasma group.

  18. Phosphatidylcholine composition of pulmonary surfactant from terrestrial and marine diving mammals

    PubMed Central

    Gutierrez, Danielle B.; Fahlman, Andreas; Gardner, Manuela; Kleinhenz, Danielle; Piscitelli, Marina; Raverty, Stephen; Haulena, Martin; Zimba, Paul V.

    2015-01-01

    Marine mammals are repeatedly exposed to elevated extra-thoracic pressure and alveolar collapse during diving and readily experience alveolar expansion upon inhalation – a unique capability as compared to terrestrial mammals. How marine mammal lungs overcome the challenges of frequent alveolar collapse and recruitment remains unknown. Recent studies indicate that pinniped lung surfactant has more anti-adhesive components compared to terrestrial mammals, which would aid in alveolar opening. However, pulmonary surfactant composition has not yet been investigated in odontocetes, whose physiology and diving behavior differ from pinnipeds. The aim of this study was to investigate the phosphatidylcholine (PC) composition of lung surfactants from various marine mammals and compare these to a terrestrial mammal. We found an increase in anti-adhesive PC species in harp seal (Pagophilus groenlandicus) and California sea lion (Zalophus californianus) compared to dog (Canus lupus familiaris), as well as an increase in the fluidizing PCs 16:0/14:0 and 16:0/16:1 in pinnipeds compared to odontocetes. The harbor porpoise (a representative of the odontocetes) did not have higher levels of fluidizing PCs compared to dog. Our preliminary results support previous findings that pinnipeds may have adapted unique surfactant compositions that allow them to dive at high pressures for extended periods without adverse effects. Future studies will need to investigate the differences in other surfactant components to fully assess the surfactant composition in odontocetes. PMID:25812797

  19. Polyandry Has No Detectable Mortality Cost in Female Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Lemaître, Jean-François; Gaillard, Jean-Michel

    2013-01-01

    In several taxonomic groups, females mate with several males during a single reproductive cycle. Although there is evidence that polyandry provides some benefits to females, it often involves mortality costs. However, empirical evidences of mortality costs of polyandry have so far been reported only in invertebrates. Whether polyandry has mortality costs in vertebrates is currently unknown. In the present study, we aimed to fill the gap by investigating the relationships between the level of polyandry (measured either by male relative testes mass or the percentage of multiple paternities) and female patterns of mortality across mammals. While we found that the two metrics of female mortality co-varied with pace of life, we did not find any evidence that polyandry leads to either decreased median lifespan or increased aging rate in mammals. We discuss such an absence of detectable mortality costs of polyandry in female mammals in light of recent advances in the study of mammalian reproductive biology and life-history tactics. PMID:23825000

  20. Cold and hunger induce diurnality in a nocturnal mammal.

    PubMed

    van der Vinne, Vincent; Riede, Sjaak J; Gorter, Jenke A; Eijer, Willem G; Sellix, Michael T; Menaker, Michael; Daan, Serge; Pilorz, Violetta; Hut, Roelof A

    2014-10-21

    The mammalian circadian system synchronizes daily timing of activity and rest with the environmental light-dark cycle. Although the underlying molecular oscillatory mechanism is well studied, factors that influence phenotypic plasticity in daily activity patterns (temporal niche switching, chronotype) are presently unknown. Molecular evidence suggests that metabolism may influence the circadian molecular clock, but evidence at the level of the organism is lacking. Here we show that a metabolic challenge by cold and hunger induces diurnality in otherwise nocturnal mice. Lowering ambient temperature changes the phase of circadian light-dark entrainment in mice by increasing daytime and decreasing nighttime activity. This effect is further enhanced by simulated food shortage, which identifies metabolic balance as the underlying common factor influencing circadian organization. Clock gene expression analysis shows that the underlying neuronal mechanism is downstream from or parallel to the main circadian pacemaker (the hypothalamic suprachiasmatic nucleus) and that the behavioral phenotype is accompanied by phase adjustment of peripheral tissues. These findings indicate that nocturnal mammals can display considerable plasticity in circadian organization and may adopt a diurnal phenotype when energetically challenged. Our previously defined circadian thermoenergetics hypothesis proposes that such circadian plasticity, which naturally occurs in nocturnal mammals, reflects adaptive maintenance of energy balance. Quantification of energy expenditure shows that diurnality under natural conditions reduces thermoregulatory costs in small burrowing mammals like mice. Metabolic feedback on circadian organization thus provides functional benefits by reducing energy expenditure. Our findings may help to clarify relationships between sleep-wake patterns and metabolic phenotypes in humans.

  1. Cool sperm: why some placental mammals have a scrotum.

    PubMed

    Lovegrove, B G

    2014-05-01

    Throughout the Cenozoic, the fitness benefits of the scrotum in placental mammals presumably outweighed the fitness costs through damage, yet a definitive hypothesis for its evolution remains elusive. Here, I present an hypothesis (Endothermic Pulses Hypothesis) which argues that the evolution of the scrotum was driven by Cenozoic pulses in endothermy, that is, increases in normothermic body temperature, which occurred in Boreotheria (rodents, primates, lagomorphs, carnivores, bats, lipotyphylans and ungulates) in response to factors such as cursoriality and climate adaptation. The model argues that stabilizing selection maintained an optimum temperature for spermatogenesis and sperm storage throughout the Cenozoic at the lower plesiomorphic levels of body temperature that prevailed in ancestral mammals for at least 163 million years. Evolutionary stasis may have been driven by reduced rates of germ-cell mutations at lower body temperatures. Following the extinction of the dinosaurs at the Cretaceous-Palaeogene boundary 65.5 mya, immediate pulses in endothermy occurred associated with the dramatic radiation of the modern placental mammal orders. The fitness advantages of an optimum temperature of spermatogenesis outweighed the potential costs of testes externalization and paved the way for the evolution of the scrotum. The scrotum evolved within several hundred thousand years of the K-Pg extinction, probably associated initially with the evolution of cursoriality, and arguably facilitated mid- and late Cenozoic metabolic adaptations to factors such as climate, flight in bats and sociality in primates.

  2. Evidence for a Mid-Jurassic Adaptive Radiation in Mammals.

    PubMed

    Close, Roger A; Friedman, Matt; Lloyd, Graeme T; Benson, Roger B J

    2015-08-17

    A series of spectacular discoveries have transformed our understanding of Mesozoic mammals in recent years. These finds reveal hitherto-unsuspected ecomorphological diversity that suggests that mammals experienced a major adaptive radiation during the Middle to Late Jurassic. Patterns of mammalian macroevolution must be reinterpreted in light of these new discoveries, but only taxonomic diversity and limited aspects of morphological disparity have been quantified. We assess rates of morphological evolution and temporal patterns of disparity using large datasets of discrete characters. Rates of morphological evolution were significantly elevated prior to the Late Jurassic, with a pronounced peak occurring during the Early to Middle Jurassic. This intense burst of phenotypic innovation coincided with a stepwise increase in apparent long-term standing diversity and the attainment of maximum disparity, supporting a "short-fuse" model of early mammalian diversification. Rates then declined sharply, and remained significantly low until the end of the Mesozoic, even among therians. This supports the "long-fuse" model of diversification in Mesozoic therians. Our findings demonstrate that sustained morphological innovation in Triassic stem-group mammals culminated in a global adaptive radiation of crown-group members during the Early to Middle Jurassic.

  3. Ecological predictors of extinction risks of endemic mammals of China.

    PubMed

    Chen, You-Hua

    2014-07-01

    In this brief report, we analyzed ecological correlates of risk of extinction for mammals endemic to China using phylogenetic eigenvector methods to control for the effect of phylogenetic inertia. Extinction risks were based on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List and ecological explanatory attributes that include range size and climatic variables. When the effect of phylogenetic inertia were controlled, climate became the best predictor for quantifying and evaluating extinction risks of endemic mammals in China, accounting for 13% of the total variation. Range size seems to play a trivial role, explaining ~1% of total variation; however, when non-phylogenetic variation partitioning analysis was done, the role of range size then explained 7.4% of total variation. Consequently, phylogenetic inertia plays a substantial role in increasing the explanatory power of range size on the extinction risks of mammals endemic to China. Limitations of the present study are discussed, with a focus on under-represented sampling of endemic mammalian species.

  4. Bartonella infection in sylvatic small mammals of central Sweden.

    PubMed Central

    Holmberg, M.; Mills, J. N.; McGill, S.; Benjamin, G.; Ellis, B. A.

    2003-01-01

    Sylvatic small mammals were captured in rural habitats near Uppsala, Sweden, to measure the prevalence of bartonella infections, characterize bacterial isolates and identify their host range, and increase our understanding of host-pathogen ecology. During 7 nights of trapping at 3 localities, 236 small mammals were captured (trap success 30%). Bartonella were isolated from bloods of Apodemus flavicollis (19 of 110 tested), Apodemus sylvaticus (6/25), Clethrionomys glareolus (9/60), Microtus agrestis (1/3), Mus musculus (1/18), and Sorex araneus (3/20). Nucleotide sequencing (a 338 bp fragment of the gltA gene) of 40 isolates yielded 6 unique genotypes. Five of the 6 genotypes were most similar to other known bartonella isolated from Old World small-mammal hosts. The most frequent genotype (83%) was isolated from A. flavicollis and M. musculus and was identical to Bartonella grahamii, a recently demonstrated human pathogen. These two hosts were most frequently captured in and around human structures and work places, thus providing conditions that could potentially lead to frequent human infections. PMID:12613756

  5. Female promiscuity and maternally dependent offspring growth rates in mammals.

    PubMed

    Garratt, Michael; Brooks, Robert C; Lemaître, Jean-François; Gaillard, Jean-Michel

    2014-04-01

    Conflicts between family members are expected to influence the duration and intensity of parental care. In mammals, the majority of this care occurs as resource transfer from mothers to offspring during gestation and lactation. Mating systems can have a strong influence on the severity of familial conflict--where female promiscuity is prevalent, conflict is expected to be higher between family members, causing offspring to demand more resources. If offspring are capable of manipulating their mothers and receive resources in proportion to their demands, resource transfer should increase with elevated promiscuity. We tested this prediction, unexplored across mammals, using a comparative approach. The total durations of gestation and lactation were not related to testes mass, a reliable proxy of female promiscuity across taxa. Offspring growth during gestation, however, and weaning mass, were positively correlated with testes mass, suggesting that offspring gain resources from their mothers at faster rates when familial conflict is greater. During gestation, the relationship between offspring growth and testes mass was also related to placenta morphology, with a stronger relationship between testes mass and growth observed in species with a less invasive placenta. Familial conflict could have a pervasive influence on patterns of parental care in mammals.

  6. Responses of large mammals to climate change.

    PubMed

    Hetem, Robyn S; Fuller, Andrea; Maloney, Shane K; Mitchell, Duncan

    2014-01-01

    Most large terrestrial mammals, including the charismatic species so important for ecotourism, do not have the luxury of rapid micro-evolution or sufficient range shifts as strategies for adjusting to climate change. The rate of climate change is too fast for genetic adaptation to occur in mammals with longevities of decades, typical of large mammals, and landscape fragmentation and population by humans too widespread to allow spontaneous range shifts of large mammals, leaving only the expression of latent phenotypic plasticity to counter effects of climate change. The expression of phenotypic plasticity includes anatomical variation within the same species, changes in phenology, and employment of intrinsic physiological and behavioral capacity that can buffer an animal against the effects of climate change. Whether that buffer will be realized is unknown, because little is known about the efficacy of the expression of plasticity, particularly for large mammals. Future research in climate change biology requires measurement of physiological characteristics of many identified free-living individual animals for long periods, probably decades, to allow us to detect whether expression of phenotypic plasticity will be sufficient to cope with climate change.

  7. Responses of large mammals to climate change

    PubMed Central

    Hetem, Robyn S; Fuller, Andrea; Maloney, Shane K; Mitchell, Duncan

    2014-01-01

    Most large terrestrial mammals, including the charismatic species so important for ecotourism, do not have the luxury of rapid micro-evolution or sufficient range shifts as strategies for adjusting to climate change. The rate of climate change is too fast for genetic adaptation to occur in mammals with longevities of decades, typical of large mammals, and landscape fragmentation and population by humans too widespread to allow spontaneous range shifts of large mammals, leaving only the expression of latent phenotypic plasticity to counter effects of climate change. The expression of phenotypic plasticity includes anatomical variation within the same species, changes in phenology, and employment of intrinsic physiological and behavioral capacity that can buffer an animal against the effects of climate change. Whether that buffer will be realized is unknown, because little is known about the efficacy of the expression of plasticity, particularly for large mammals. Future research in climate change biology requires measurement of physiological characteristics of many identified free-living individual animals for long periods, probably decades, to allow us to detect whether expression of phenotypic plasticity will be sufficient to cope with climate change. PMID:27583293

  8. [Amplitude modulation in sound signals by mammals].

    PubMed

    Nikol'skiĭ, A A

    2012-01-01

    Periodic variations in amplitude of a signal, or amplitude modulation (AM), affect the structure of communicative messages spectrum. Within the spectrum of AM-signals, side frequencies are formed both above and below the carrier frequency that is subjected to modulation. In case of harmonic signal structure they are presented near fundamental frequency as well as near harmonics. Thus, AM may by viewed as a relatively simple mechanism for controlling the spectrum of messages transmitted by mammals. Examples of AM affecting the spectrum structure of functionally different sound signals are discussed as applied to representatives of four orders of mammals: rodents (Reodentia), duplicidentates (Lagomorpha), pinnipeds (Pinnipedia), and paridigitates (Artiodactia). For the first time, the classification of AM in animals' sound signals is given. Five forms of AM are picked out in sound signals by mammals: absence of AM, continuous AM, fragmented, heterogeneous, and multilevel one. AM presence/absence is related neither with belonging to any specific order nor with some particular function of a signal. Similar forms of AM can occur in different orders of mammals in parallel. On the contrary, different forms of AM can be detected in signals meant for similar functions. The assumption is made about AM-signals facilitating information encoding and jamprotection of messages transmitted by mammals. Preliminry analysis indicates that hard-driving amplitude modulation is incompatible with hard-driving frequency modulation.

  9. Adaptive radiation of multituberculate mammals before the extinction of dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Gregory P; Evans, Alistair R; Corfe, Ian J; Smits, Peter D; Fortelius, Mikael; Jernvall, Jukka

    2012-03-14

    The Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction approximately 66 million years ago is conventionally thought to have been a turning point in mammalian evolution. Prior to that event and for the first two-thirds of their evolutionary history, mammals were mostly confined to roles as generalized, small-bodied, nocturnal insectivores, presumably under selection pressures from dinosaurs. Release from these pressures, by extinction of non-avian dinosaurs at the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary, triggered ecological diversification of mammals. Although recent individual fossil discoveries have shown that some mammalian lineages diversified ecologically during the Mesozoic era, comprehensive ecological analyses of mammalian groups crossing the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary are lacking. Such analyses are needed because diversification analyses of living taxa allow only indirect inferences of past ecosystems. Here we show that in arguably the most evolutionarily successful clade of Mesozoic mammals, the Multituberculata, an adaptive radiation began at least 20 million years before the extinction of non-avian dinosaurs and continued across the Cretaceous-Paleogene boundary. Disparity in dental complexity, which relates to the range of diets, rose sharply in step with generic richness and disparity in body size. Moreover, maximum dental complexity and body size demonstrate an adaptive shift towards increased herbivory. This dietary expansion tracked the ecological rise of angiosperms and suggests that the resources that were available to multituberculates were relatively unaffected by the Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction. Taken together, our results indicate that mammals were able to take advantage of new ecological opportunities in the Mesozoic and that at least some of these opportunities persisted through the Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction. Similar broad-scale ecomorphological inventories of other radiations may help to constrain the possible causes of mass extinctions.

  10. Current and future patterns of global marine mammal biodiversity.

    PubMed

    Kaschner, Kristin; Tittensor, Derek P; Ready, Jonathan; Gerrodette, Tim; Worm, Boris

    2011-01-01

    Quantifying the spatial distribution of taxa is an important prerequisite for the preservation of biodiversity, and can provide a baseline against which to measure the impacts of climate change. Here we analyse patterns of marine mammal species richness based on predictions of global distributional ranges for 115 species, including all extant pinnipeds and cetaceans. We used an environmental suitability model specifically designed to address the paucity of distributional data for many marine mammal species. We generated richness patterns by overlaying predicted distributions for all species; these were then validated against sightings data from dedicated long-term surveys in the Eastern Tropical Pacific, the Northeast Atlantic and the Southern Ocean. Model outputs correlated well with empirically observed patterns of biodiversity in all three survey regions. Marine mammal richness was predicted to be highest in temperate waters of both hemispheres with distinct hotspots around New Zealand, Japan, Baja California, the Galapagos Islands, the Southeast Pacific, and the Southern Ocean. We then applied our model to explore potential changes in biodiversity under future perturbations of environmental conditions. Forward projections of biodiversity using an intermediate Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) temperature scenario predicted that projected ocean warming and changes in sea ice cover until 2050 may have moderate effects on the spatial patterns of marine mammal richness. Increases in cetacean richness were predicted above 40° latitude in both hemispheres, while decreases in both pinniped and cetacean richness were expected at lower latitudes. Our results show how species distribution models can be applied to explore broad patterns of marine biodiversity worldwide for taxa for which limited distributional data are available.

  11. New Specimens of the Rare Taeniodont Wortmania (Mammalia: Eutheria) from the San Juan Basin of New Mexico and Comments on the Phylogeny and Functional Morphology of “Archaic” Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Williamson, Thomas E.; Brusatte, Stephen L.

    2013-01-01

    Background Taeniodonta is a clade of Late Cretaceous – Paleogene mammals remarkable for their relatively extreme cranial, dental, and postcranial adaptations and notable for being among the first mammals to achieve relatively large size following the Cretaceous-Paleogene mass extinction. Previous workers have hypothesized that taeniodonts can be divided into two clades: Conoryctidae, a group of small-bodied taeniodonts with supposedly “generalized” postcranial skeletons, and Stylinodontidae, a group of large-bodied, robust animals with massive forelimbs and claws adapted for scratch-digging. However, many taeniodont taxa are poorly known and few are represented by postcranial material, leaving many details about their anatomy, biology, and evolution ambiguous. Methodology/Principal Findings In this paper, we describe three new specimens of the rare taxon Wortmaniaotariidens from the early Paleocene (Puercan) of New Mexico. Among these specimens is one that includes remarkably complete cranial and dental material, including associated upper and lower teeth, and another that consists of partial forelimbs. These specimens allow for an updated anatomical description of this unusual taxon, supply new data for phylogenetic analyses, and enable a more constrained discussion of taeniodont biology and functional morphology. Conclusions/Significance The new specimen of Wortmania that includes associated upper and lower teeth indicates that previous interpretations of the upper dentition of this taxon were not accurate and the taxon Robertschochiasullivani is a junior synonym of W. otariidens. New specimens that include partial forelimbs indicate that Wortmania is very similar to later, large-bodied taeniodonts, with marked and distinctive adaptations for scratch-digging. Comparisons with other taeniodont taxa that include postcranial material suggest that all taeniodonts may have had scratch-digging adaptations. A phylogenetic analysis shows that Schowalteria and

  12. Influenza Virus Infection of Marine Mammals.

    PubMed

    Fereidouni, Sasan; Munoz, Olga; Von Dobschuetz, Sophie; De Nardi, Marco

    2016-03-01

    Interspecies transmission may play a key role in the evolution and ecology of influenza A viruses. The importance of marine mammals as hosts or carriers of potential zoonotic pathogens such as highly pathogenic H5 and H7 influenza viruses is not well understood. The fact that influenza viruses are some of the few zoonotic pathogens known to have caused infection in marine mammals, evidence for direct transmission of influenza A virus H7N7 subtype from seals to man, transmission of pandemic H1N1 influenza viruses to seals and also limited evidence for long-term persistence of influenza B viruses in seal populations without significant genetic change, makes monitoring of influenza viruses in marine mammal populations worth being performed. In addition, such monitoring studies could be a great tool to better understand the ecology of influenza viruses in nature.

  13. Differences in ligamenta flava among some mammals.

    PubMed Central

    Ponseti, I. V.

    1995-01-01

    The ligamenta flava of the thoracolumbar spine of mammals with great spinal mobility have a larger content of elastin than in animals with little spinal motion. The elastin content is also higher in the ligamenta flava of mammals with arched backs and prolonged sitting posture than in nonsitting mammals with the vertebral column in the shape of a flat bow. The ligamentum flavum appears to be important; a) in the control of intervertebra movements, b) in providing intrinsic stability to the spine in the sitting and standing postures and c) in maintaining a smooth surface in the posterior wall of the spinal canal and neural foraminae. Images Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure 7 Figure 8 Figure 9 Figure 10 Figure 11 PMID:7634024

  14. Resolving the relationships of Paleocene placental mammals.

    PubMed

    Halliday, Thomas J D; Upchurch, Paul; Goswami, Anjali

    2017-02-01

    The 'Age of Mammals' began in the Paleocene epoch, the 10 million year interval immediately following the Cretaceous-Palaeogene mass extinction. The apparently rapid shift in mammalian ecomorphs from small, largely insectivorous forms to many small-to-large-bodied, diverse taxa has driven a hypothesis that the end-Cretaceous heralded an adaptive radiation in placental mammal evolution. However, the affinities of most Paleocene mammals have remained unresolved, despite significant advances in understanding the relationships of the extant orders, hindering efforts to reconstruct robustly the origin and early evolution of placental mammals. Here we present the largest cladistic analysis of Paleocene placentals to date, from a data matrix including 177 taxa (130 of which are Palaeogene) and 680 morphological characters. We improve the resolution of the relationships of several enigmatic Paleocene clades, including families of 'condylarths'. Protungulatum is resolved as a stem eutherian, meaning that no crown-placental mammal unambiguously pre-dates the Cretaceous-Palaeogene boundary. Our results support an Atlantogenata-Boreoeutheria split at the root of crown Placentalia, the presence of phenacodontids as closest relatives of Perissodactyla, the validity of Euungulata, and the placement of Arctocyonidae close to Carnivora. Periptychidae and Pantodonta are resolved as sister taxa, Leptictida and Cimolestidae are found to be stem eutherians, and Hyopsodontidae is highly polyphyletic. The inclusion of Paleocene taxa in a placental phylogeny alters interpretations of relationships and key events in mammalian evolutionary history. Paleocene mammals are an essential source of data for understanding fully the biotic dynamics associated with the end-Cretaceous mass extinction. The relationships presented here mark a critical first step towards accurate reconstruction of this important interval in the evolution of the modern fauna.

  15. Predicting small mammal and flea abundance using landform and soil properties in a plague endemic area in Lushoto District, Tanzania.

    PubMed

    Meliyo, Joel L; Kimaro, Didas N; Msanya, Balthazar M; Mulungu, Loth S; Hieronimo, Proches; Kihupi, Nganga I; Gulinck, Hubert; Deckers, Jozef A

    2014-07-01

    Small mammals particularly rodents, are considered the primary natural hosts of plague. Literature suggests that plague persistence in natural foci has a root cause in soils. The objective of this study was to investigate the relationship between on the one hand landforms and associated soil properties, and on the other hand small mammals and fleas in West Usambara Mountains in Tanzania, a plague endemic area. Standard field survey methods coupled with Geographical Information System (GIS) technique were used to examine landform and soils characteristics. Soil samples were analysed in the laboratory for physico-chemical properties. Small mammals were trapped on pre-established landform positions and identified to genus/species level. Fleas were removed from the trapped small mammals and counted. Exploration of landform and soil data was done using ArcGIS Toolbox functions and descriptive statistical analysis. The relationships between landforms, soils, small mammals and fleas were established by generalised linear regression model (GLM) operated in R statistics software. Results show that landforms and soils influence the abundance of small mammals and fleas and their spatial distribution. The abundance of small mammals and fleas increased with increase in elevation. Small mammal species richness also increases with elevation. A landform-soil model shows that available phosphorus, slope aspect and elevation were statistically significant predictors explaining richness and abundance of small mammals. Fleas' abundance and spatial distribution were influenced by hill-shade, available phosphorus and base saturation. The study suggests that landforms and soils have a strong influence on the richness and evenness of small mammals and their fleas' abundance hence could be used to explain plague dynamics in the area.

  16. Oral biology and disorders of tusked mammals.

    PubMed

    Steenkamp, Gerhard

    2003-09-01

    Tusked mammals can be terrestrial or aquatic. Many of these magnificent animals are kept in captivity all over the world. Functions of tusks vary as much as the species in which they occur. Dental anomalies and disorders of tusks and the rest of the dentition in these mammals were discussed, with an emphasis on the elephant. The tusk anatomy, with its large, conically-shaped pulp, makes it an ideal tooth for partial pulpectomy treatment in trauma cases where the pulp is exposed. Surgical techniques for tusks have been developed and were discussed. Oral tumors occur, but are rare.

  17. Precision genetic engineering in large mammals.

    PubMed

    Garrels, Wiebke; Ivics, Zoltan; Kues, Wilfried A

    2012-07-01

    Precision genetic engineering based on stable chromosomal insertion of exogenous DNA in the genomes of large mammals is immensely important for the development of improved biomedical models, pharmaceutical research and an accelerated breeding progress. Precision genetic engineering requires (i) a known locus of genomic integration, (ii) a defined status of foreign DNA, (iii) that transgene expression is unaffected by neighbouring chromosomal sequences, (iv) endogenous genes are not mutated and (v) no unwanted DNA sequences are present. Recently, advanced molecular techniques exploiting exogenous enzymes have opened the possibilities for more sophisticated genetic engineering. Here, we critically review current developments of enzyme-catalysed approaches for targeted transgenesis in large mammals.

  18. The impact of buffer strips and stream-side grazing on small mammals in southwestern Wisconsin

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Chapman, Erik W.; Ribic, C.A.

    2002-01-01

    The practice of continuously grazing cattle along streams has caused extensive degradation of riparian habitats. Buffer strips and managed intensive rotational grazing (MIRG) have been proposed to protect and restore stream ecosystems in Wisconsin. However, the ecological implications of a switch from traditional livestock management to MIRG or buffer strip establishment have not been investigated. Differences in small mammal communities associated with riparian areas on continuously grazed and MIRG pastures, as well as vegetative buffer strips adjacent to row crops, were investigated in southwestern Wisconsin during May-September 1997 and 1998. More species (mean of 6-7) were found on the buffer sites than on the pasture sites (mean of 2-5). Total small mammal abundance on buffer sites was greater than on the pastures as well: there were 3-5 times as many animals on the buffer sites compared to the pasture sites, depending on year. There were no differences in species richness or total abundance between MIRG and continuously grazed pastures in either year. Total small mammal abundance was greater near the stream than away from the stream, regardless of farm management practice but there were no differences in species richness. Buffer strips appear to support a particularly rich and abundant small mammal community. Although results did not detect a difference in small mammal use between pasture types, farm-wide implications of a conversion from continuous to MIRG styles of grazing may benefit small mammals indirectly by causing an increase in the prevalence of pasture in the agricultural landscape.

  19. Ongoing unraveling of a continental fauna: decline and extinction of Australian mammals since European settlement.

    PubMed

    Woinarski, John C Z; Burbidge, Andrew A; Harrison, Peter L

    2015-04-14

    The highly distinctive and mostly endemic Australian land mammal fauna has suffered an extraordinary rate of extinction (>10% of the 273 endemic terrestrial species) over the last ∼200 y: in comparison, only one native land mammal from continental North America became extinct since European settlement. A further 21% of Australian endemic land mammal species are now assessed to be threatened, indicating that the rate of loss (of one to two extinctions per decade) is likely to continue. Australia's marine mammals have fared better overall, but status assessment for them is seriously impeded by lack of information. Much of the loss of Australian land mammal fauna (particularly in the vast deserts and tropical savannas) has been in areas that are remote from human population centers and recognized as relatively unmodified at global scale. In contrast to general patterns of extinction on other continents where the main cause is habitat loss, hunting, and impacts of human development, particularly in areas of high and increasing human population pressures, the loss of Australian land mammals is most likely due primarily to predation by introduced species, particularly the feral cat, Felis catus, and European red fox, Vulpes vulpes, and changed fire regimes.

  20. Effects of cattle grazing on small mammal communities in the Hulunber meadow steppe.

    PubMed

    Cao, Chan; Shuai, Ling-Ying; Xin, Xiao-Ping; Liu, Zhi-Tao; Song, Yan-Ling; Zeng, Zhi-Gao

    2016-01-01

    Small mammals play important roles in many ecosystems, and understanding their response to disturbances such as cattle grazing is fundamental for developing sustainable land use strategies. However, how small mammals respond to cattle grazing remains controversial. A potential cause is that most of previous studies adopt rather simple experimental designs based solely on the presence/absence of grazing, and are thus unable to detect any complex relationships between diversity and grazing intensity. In this study, we conducted manipulated experiments in the Hulunber meadow steppe to survey small mammal community structures under four levels of grazing intensities. We found dramatic changes in species composition in native small mammal communities when grazing intensity reached intermediate levels (0.46 animal unit/ha). As grazing intensity increased, Spermophilus dauricus gradually became the single dominant species. Species richness and diversity of small mammals in ungrazed and lightly grazed (0.23 animal unit/ha) area were much higher than in intermediately and heavily grazed area. We did not detect a humped relationship between small mammal diversity and disturbance levels predicted by the intermediate disturbance hypothesis (IDH). Our study highlighted the necessity of conducting manipulated experiments under multiple grazing intensities.

  1. Effects of cattle grazing on small mammal communities in the Hulunber meadow steppe

    PubMed Central

    Xin, Xiao-Ping; Liu, Zhi-Tao; Song, Yan-Ling

    2016-01-01

    Small mammals play important roles in many ecosystems, and understanding their response to disturbances such as cattle grazing is fundamental for developing sustainable land use strategies. However, how small mammals respond to cattle grazing remains controversial. A potential cause is that most of previous studies adopt rather simple experimental designs based solely on the presence/absence of grazing, and are thus unable to detect any complex relationships between diversity and grazing intensity. In this study, we conducted manipulated experiments in the Hulunber meadow steppe to survey small mammal community structures under four levels of grazing intensities. We found dramatic changes in species composition in native small mammal communities when grazing intensity reached intermediate levels (0.46 animal unit/ha). As grazing intensity increased, Spermophilus dauricus gradually became the single dominant species. Species richness and diversity of small mammals in ungrazed and lightly grazed (0.23 animal unit/ha) area were much higher than in intermediately and heavily grazed area. We did not detect a humped relationship between small mammal diversity and disturbance levels predicted by the intermediate disturbance hypothesis (IDH). Our study highlighted the necessity of conducting manipulated experiments under multiple grazing intensities. PMID:27635323

  2. Scenarios of large mammal loss in Europe for the 21st century.

    PubMed

    Rondinini, Carlo; Visconti, Piero

    2015-08-01

    Distributions and populations of large mammals are declining globally, leading to an increase in their extinction risk. We forecasted the distribution of extant European large mammals (17 carnivores and 10 ungulates) based on 2 Rio+20 scenarios of socioeconomic development: business as usual and reduced impact through changes in human consumption of natural resources. These scenarios are linked to scenarios of land-use change and climate change through the spatial allocation of land conversion up to 2050. We used a hierarchical framework to forecast the extent and distribution of mammal habitat based on species' habitat preferences (as described in the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List database) within a suitable climatic space fitted to the species' current geographic range. We analyzed the geographic and taxonomic variation of habitat loss for large mammals and the potential effect of the reduced impact policy on loss mitigation. Averaging across scenarios, European large mammals were predicted to lose 10% of their habitat by 2050 (25% in the worst-case scenario). Predicted loss was much higher for species in northwestern Europe, where habitat is expected to be lost due to climate and land-use change. Change in human consumption patterns was predicted to substantially improve the conservation of habitat for European large mammals, but not enough to reduce extinction risk if species cannot adapt locally to climate change or disperse.

  3. Ongoing unraveling of a continental fauna: Decline and extinction of Australian mammals since European settlement

    PubMed Central

    Woinarski, John C. Z.; Burbidge, Andrew A.; Harrison, Peter L.

    2015-01-01

    The highly distinctive and mostly endemic Australian land mammal fauna has suffered an extraordinary rate of extinction (>10% of the 273 endemic terrestrial species) over the last ∼200 y: in comparison, only one native land mammal from continental North America became extinct since European settlement. A further 21% of Australian endemic land mammal species are now assessed to be threatened, indicating that the rate of loss (of one to two extinctions per decade) is likely to continue. Australia’s marine mammals have fared better overall, but status assessment for them is seriously impeded by lack of information. Much of the loss of Australian land mammal fauna (particularly in the vast deserts and tropical savannas) has been in areas that are remote from human population centers and recognized as relatively unmodified at global scale. In contrast to general patterns of extinction on other continents where the main cause is habitat loss, hunting, and impacts of human development, particularly in areas of high and increasing human population pressures, the loss of Australian land mammals is most likely due primarily to predation by introduced species, particularly the feral cat, Felis catus, and European red fox, Vulpes vulpes, and changed fire regimes. PMID:25675493

  4. Blood flow to long bones indicates activity metabolism in mammals, reptiles and dinosaurs

    PubMed Central

    Seymour, Roger S.; Smith, Sarah L.; White, Craig R.; Henderson, Donald M.; Schwarz-Wings, Daniela

    2012-01-01

    The cross-sectional area of a nutrient foramen of a long bone is related to blood flow requirements of the internal bone cells that are essential for dynamic bone remodelling. Foramen area increases with body size in parallel among living mammals and non-varanid reptiles, but is significantly larger in mammals. An index of blood flow rate through the foramina is about 10 times higher in mammals than in reptiles, and even higher if differences in blood pressure are considered. The scaling of foramen size correlates well with maximum whole-body metabolic rate during exercise in mammals and reptiles, but less well with resting metabolic rate. This relates to the role of blood flow associated with bone remodelling during and following activity. Mammals and varanid lizards have much higher aerobic metabolic rates and exercise-induced bone remodelling than non-varanid reptiles. Foramen areas of 10 species of dinosaur from five taxonomic groups are generally larger than from mammals, indicating a routinely highly active and aerobic lifestyle. The simple measurement holds possibilities offers the possibility of assessing other groups of extinct and living vertebrates in relation to body size, behaviour and habitat. PMID:21733896

  5. Blood flow to long bones indicates activity metabolism in mammals, reptiles and dinosaurs.

    PubMed

    Seymour, Roger S; Smith, Sarah L; White, Craig R; Henderson, Donald M; Schwarz-Wings, Daniela

    2012-02-07

    The cross-sectional area of a nutrient foramen of a long bone is related to blood flow requirements of the internal bone cells that are essential for dynamic bone remodelling. Foramen area increases with body size in parallel among living mammals and non-varanid reptiles, but is significantly larger in mammals. An index of blood flow rate through the foramina is about 10 times higher in mammals than in reptiles, and even higher if differences in blood pressure are considered. The scaling of foramen size correlates well with maximum whole-body metabolic rate during exercise in mammals and reptiles, but less well with resting metabolic rate. This relates to the role of blood flow associated with bone remodelling during and following activity. Mammals and varanid lizards have much higher aerobic metabolic rates and exercise-induced bone remodelling than non-varanid reptiles. Foramen areas of 10 species of dinosaur from five taxonomic groups are generally larger than from mammals, indicating a routinely highly active and aerobic lifestyle. The simple measurement holds possibilities offers the possibility of assessing other groups of extinct and living vertebrates in relation to body size, behaviour and habitat.

  6. Challenges to natural resource monitoring in a small border park: terrestrial mammals at Coronado National Memorial, Cochise County, Arizona

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Swann, Don E.; Bucci, Melanie; Kuenzi, Amy J.; Alberti, Barbara N.; Schwalbe, Cecil R.; Halvorson, William L.; van Riper, Charles; Schwalbe, Cecil R.

    2010-01-01

    Long-term monitoring in national parks is essential to meet National Park Service and other important public goals. Terrestrial mammals are often proposed for monitoring because large mammals are of interest to visitors and small mammals are important as prey. However, traditional monitoring strategies for mammals are often too expensive and complex to sustain for long periods, particularly in small parks. To evaluate potential strategies for long-term monitoring in small parks, we conducted an intensive one-year inventory of terrestrial mammals at Coronado National Memorial, located in Arizona on the U.S.-Mexico international border, then continued less-intensive monitoring at the site for 7 additional years. During 1996-2003 we confirmed 44 species of terrestrial mammals. Most species (40) were detected in the intensive first year of the study, but we continued to detect new species in later years. Mark-recapture data on small mammals indicated large inter-annual fluctuations in population size, but no significant trend over the 7-year period. Issues associated with the international border affected monitoring efforts and increased sampling costs. Our study confirms that sustained annual monitoring of mammals is probably not feasible in small park units like Coronado. However, comparisons of our data with past studies provide insight into important changes in the mammal community since the 1970s, including an increase in abundance and diversity of grassland rodents. Our results suggest that intensive inventories every 10-20 years may be a valuable and cost-effective approach for detecting long-term trends in terrestrial mammal communities in small natural areas.

  7. Lerneca inalata beripocone subsp. nov. (Orthoptera: Phalangopsidae; Luzarinae): a new taxon for the northern Pantanal of Brazil.

    PubMed

    Lima, Raysa Martins; Martins, Luciano De Pinho; Pereira, Marcelo Ribeiro; Ganchev, Todor D; Jahn, Olaf; Lhano, Marcos Gonçalves; Marques, Marinêz Isaac; Schuchmann, Karl-L

    2016-10-17

    The first record of the Orthoptera species Lerneca inalata for Brazil is presented here. The taxon is represented by a new subspecies Lerneca inalata beripocone subsp. nov. (Phalangopsidae, Luzarinae), collected in the Pantanal of Poconé, Mato Grosso, Brazil. This work includes morphological and morphometric data as well as descriptions of female genitalia and calling song. The new subspecies has as diagnostic features the male genitalia with six ventral spines on the B sclerite, the first spine having a subtle bifurcation; the mid-region of the strongly sclerotized pseudepiphallus; inclination of C sclerite with slightly concave curvature; tegmina-length ratio and the speculum (syn. mirror) width approximately three times the length of the apical area. The description of the female genitalia and the calling song is presented for the first time for the species Lerneca inalata. A distribution map covers the local occurrence of its subspecies.

  8. Molecular evidence for a single taxon, Anopheles nuneztovari s. l., from two endemic malaria regions in Colombia

    PubMed Central

    Jaramillo, Luz Marina; Gutiérrez, Lina A; Luckhart, Shirley; Conn, Jan E; Correa, Margarita M

    2012-01-01

    To elucidate the Anopheles nuneztovari s.l. taxonomic status at a microgeographic level in four malaria endemic localities from Antioquia and Córdoba, Colombia, fragments of the Cytochrome oxidase subunit I (COI) and the white gene were used. The COI analysis showed low genetic differentiation with FST levels between −0.02 and 0.137 and Nm values between 3 and infinity, indicating the presence of high gene flow among An. nuneztovari s.l. populations from the four localities. The COI network showed a single most common haplotype, 1 (n=55), present in all localities, as the likely ancestral haplotype. Analysis of the white gene showed that An. nuneztovari s.l. populations from both departments grouped with haplotypes 19 and 20, which are part of lineage 3 previously reported. The results of the present study suggest that An. nuneztovari s.l. is a single taxon in the area of the present study. PMID:22241127

  9. Mammal assemblages in forest fragments and landscapes occupied by black howler monkeys.

    PubMed

    Rangel-Negrín, Ariadna; Coyohua-Fuentes, Alejandro; Canales-Espinosa, Domingo; Dias, Pedro Américo D

    2014-07-01

    Species assemblages in disturbed habitats vary as a function of the interaction between species requirements and the spatial configuration of the habitat. There are many reports accounting for the presence of howler monkeys in fragments where other mammals are absent, suggesting that they are more resilient. In the present study we explored this idea and predicted that if howler monkeys were more resilient to habitat loss and fragmentation than other mammals, mammal assemblages in fragments occupied by howler monkeys should include fewer species with decreasing amount of habitat (smaller fragment size and less habitat in the landscape) and increasing number of forest fragments. We explored these relationships by additionally considering the feeding and life habits of mammal species, as well as the isolation and proximity of each fragment to human settlements and roads. We sampled the presence of mammals in five fragments occupied by black howler monkeys (Alouatta pigra) in the Mexican state of Campeche. Through direct sights performed during 240 h in each fragment, we observed 23 species. At the landscape scale, higher fragmentation was associated with a decrease in herbivores, omnivores and total number of species. At the fragment scale semiarboreal, omnivore, and total number of species increased with increasing fragment size. This study supports the idea that howler monkeys are more resilient to forest loss and fragmentation than other native mammals, and our exploratory analyses suggest that the specific mammal assemblages that are found in fragments are related to both landscape and fragment scale spatial attributes, as well as with species-specific characteristics.

  10. How to Handle Speciose Clades? Mass Taxon-Sampling as a Strategy towards Illuminating the Natural History of Campanula (Campanuloideae)

    PubMed Central

    Mansion, Guilhem; Parolly, Gerald; Crowl, Andrew A.; Mavrodiev, Evgeny; Cellinese, Nico; Oganesian, Marine; Fraunhofer, Katharina; Kamari, Georgia; Phitos, Dimitrios; Haberle, Rosemarie; Akaydin, Galip; Ikinci, Nursel; Raus, Thomas; Borsch, Thomas

    2012-01-01

    Background Speciose clades usually harbor species with a broad spectrum of adaptive strategies and complex distribution patterns, and thus constitute ideal systems to disentangle biotic and abiotic causes underlying species diversification. The delimitation of such study systems to test evolutionary hypotheses is difficult because they often rely on artificial genus concepts as starting points. One of the most prominent examples is the bellflower genus Campanula with some 420 species, but up to 600 species when including all lineages to which Campanula is paraphyletic. We generated a large alignment of petD group II intron sequences to include more than 70% of described species as a reference. By comparison with partial data sets we could then assess the impact of selective taxon sampling strategies on phylogenetic reconstruction and subsequent evolutionary conclusions. Methodology/Principal Findings Phylogenetic analyses based on maximum parsimony (PAUP, PRAP), Bayesian inference (MrBayes), and maximum likelihood (RAxML) were first carried out on the large reference data set (D680). Parameters including tree topology, branch support, and age estimates, were then compared to those obtained from smaller data sets resulting from “classification-guided” (D088) and “phylogeny-guided sampling” (D101). Analyses of D088 failed to fully recover the phylogenetic diversity in Campanula, whereas D101 inferred significantly different branch support and age estimates. Conclusions/Significance A short genomic region with high phylogenetic utility allowed us to easily generate a comprehensive phylogenetic framework for the speciose Campanula clade. Our approach recovered 17 well-supported and circumscribed sub-lineages. Knowing these will be instrumental for developing more specific evolutionary hypotheses and guide future research, we highlight the predictive value of a mass taxon-sampling strategy as a first essential step towards illuminating the detailed evolutionary

  11. Evolutionary history of "early-diverging" eukaryotes: the excavate taxon Carpediemonas is a close relative of Giardia.

    PubMed

    Simpson, Alastair G B; Roger, Andrew J; Silberman, Jeffrey D; Leipe, Detlef D; Edgcomb, Virginia P; Jermiin, Lars S; Patterson, David J; Sogin, Mitchell L

    2002-10-01

    Diplomonads, such as Giardia, and their close relatives retortamonads have been proposed as early-branching eukaryotes that diverged before the acquisition-retention of mitochondria, and they have become key organisms in attempts to understand the evolution of eukaryotic cells. In this phylogenetic study we focus on a series of eukaryotes suggested to be relatives of diplomonads on morphological grounds, the "excavate taxa". Phylogenies of small subunit ribosomal RNA (SSU rRNA) genes, alpha-tubulin, beta-tubulin, and combined alpha- + beta-tubulin all scatter the various excavate taxa across the diversity of eukaryotes. But all phylogenies place the excavate taxon Carpediemonas as the closest relative of diplomonads (and, where data are available, retortamonads). This novel relationship is recovered across phylogenetic methods and across various taxon-deletion experiments. Statistical support is strongest under maximum-likelihood (ML) (when among-site rate variation is modeled) and when the most divergent diplomonad sequences are excluded, suggesting a true relationship rather than an artifact of long-branch attraction. When all diplomonads are excluded, our ML SSU rRNA tree actually places retortamonads and Carpediemonas away from the base of the eukaryotes. The branches separating excavate taxa are mostly not well supported (especially in analyses of SSU rRNA data). Statistical tests of the SSU rRNA data, including an "expected likelihood weights" approach, do not reject trees where excavate taxa are constrained to be a clade (with or without parabasalids and Euglenozoa). Although diplomonads and retortamonads lack any mitochondria-like organelle, Carpediemonas contains double membrane-bounded structures physically resembling hydrogenosomes. The phylogenetic position of Carpediemonas suggests that it will be valuable in interpreting the evolutionary significance of many molecular and cellular peculiarities of diplomonads.

  12. Paracellular Absorption: A Bat Breaks the Mammal Paradigm

    PubMed Central

    Caviedes-Vidal, Enrique; Karasov, William H.; Chediack, Juan Gabriel; Fasulo, Verónica; Cruz-Neto, Ariovaldo P.; Otani, Lye

    2008-01-01

    Bats tend to have less intestinal tissue than comparably sized nonflying mammals. The corresponding reduction in intestinal volume and hence mass of digesta carried is advantageous because the costs of flight increase with load carried and because take-off and maneuverability are diminished at heavier masses. Water soluble compounds, such as glucose and amino acids, are absorbed in the small intestine mainly via two pathways, the transporter-mediated transcellular and the passive, paracellular pathways. Using the microchiropteran bat Artibeus literatus (mean mass 80.6±3.7 g), we tested the predictions that absorption of water-soluble compounds that are not actively transported would be extensive as a compensatory mechanism for relatively less intestinal tissue, and would decline with increasing molecular mass in accord with sieve-like paracellular absorption. Using a standard pharmacokinetic technique, we fed, or injected intraperitonealy the metabolically inert carbohydrates L-rhamnose (molecular mass = 164 Da) and cellobiose (molecular mass = 342 Da) which are absorbed only by paracellular transport, and 3-O-methyl-D-glucose (3OMD-glucose) which is absorbed via both mediated (active) and paracellular transport. As predicted, the bioavailability of paracellular probes declined with increasing molecular mass (rhamnose, 90±11%; cellobiose, 10±3%, n = 8) and was significantly higher in bats than has been reported for laboratory rats and other mammals. In addition, absorption of 3OMD-glucose was high (96±11%). We estimated that the bats rely on passive, paracellular absorption for more than 70% of their total glucose absorption, much more than in non-flying mammals. Although possibly compensating for less intestinal tissue, a high intestinal permeability that permits passive absorption might be less selective than a carrier-mediated system for nutrient absorption and might permit toxins to be absorbed from plant and animal material in the intestinal

  13. Paracellular absorption: a bat breaks the mammal paradigm.

    PubMed

    Caviedes-Vidal, Enrique; Karasov, William H; Chediack, Juan Gabriel; Fasulo, Verónica; Cruz-Neto, Ariovaldo P; Otani, Lye

    2008-01-09

    Bats tend to have less intestinal tissue than comparably sized nonflying mammals. The corresponding reduction in intestinal volume and hence mass of digesta carried is advantageous because the costs of flight increase with load carried and because take-off and maneuverability are diminished at heavier masses. Water soluble compounds, such as glucose and amino acids, are absorbed in the small intestine mainly via two pathways, the transporter-mediated transcellular and the passive, paracellular pathways. Using the microchiropteran bat Artibeus literatus (mean mass 80.6+/-3.7 g), we tested the predictions that absorption of water-soluble compounds that are not actively transported would be extensive as a compensatory mechanism for relatively less intestinal tissue, and would decline with increasing molecular mass in accord with sieve-like paracellular absorption. Using a standard pharmacokinetic technique, we fed, or injected intraperitoneally the metabolically inert carbohydrates L-rhamnose (molecular mass = 164 Da) and cellobiose (molecular mass = 342 Da) which are absorbed only by paracellular transport, and 3-O-methyl-D-glucose (3OMD-glucose) which is absorbed via both mediated (active) and paracellular transport. As predicted, the bioavailability of paracellular probes declined with increasing molecular mass (rhamnose, 90+/-11%; cellobiose, 10+/-3%, n = 8) and was significantly higher in bats than has been reported for laboratory rats and other mammals. In addition, absorption of 3OMD-glucose was high (96+/-11%). We estimated that the bats rely on passive, paracellular absorption for more than 70% of their total glucose absorption, much more than in non-flying mammals. Although possibly compensating for less intestinal tissue, a high intestinal permeability that permits passive absorption might be less selective than a carrier-mediated system for nutrient absorption and might permit toxins to be absorbed from plant and animal material in the intestinal lumen.

  14. Ticks associated with wild mammals in Ghana.

    PubMed

    Ntiamoa-Baidu, Y; Carr-Saunders, C; Matthews, B E; Preston, P M; Walker, A R

    2005-06-01

    The host ranges of a collection of 21 tick species found on wild mammals in the savanna, forests and coastal zone of Ghana suggested that most species were adapted to feeding mainly on host species within a single mammalian order, i.e. on artiodactyls (bovids/suids), carnivores, rodents or pholidotes (pangolins). Only a few species were dispersed evenly across a range of orders. Seven out of ten of the most common ticks on forest mammals were significantly associated with a particular host species or a group of closely related host species, which could be viewed as their major host or hosts, but they were also recorded much less frequently on a wide range of host species. Two other species were confined to their major hosts. Only one species appeared to be widely dispersed on forest mammals and to lack a particular major host. The majority of tick species therefore occurred on hosts with very distinctive biological, behavioural and ecological characteristics. The study provided no evidence to support the view that host specificity is an artefact of sampling. Finding that the tick species on Ghanaian wild mammals occurred on particular hosts, as well as in distinct habitats, indicated that tick-host associations are important for tick survival and confirmed the importance of climate and vegetation in tick distribution.

  15. [Current views on vision of mammals].

    PubMed

    Khokhlova, T V

    2012-01-01

    In the review, research data are presented on mammals' vision including visual pigments, color and contrast vision, and visual behaviour in different species. It is shown that in course of evolution mammals were gradually losing the elements of daylight cone vision system that are typical of other vertebrates. In monotremes, visual pigments SWS2 (cone blue-sensitive 2) and MWS/LWS (green/red-sensitive) are still present, as well as rod RH1. Theria, except some primates, also have two cone visual pigments: SWS1 (ultraviolet/violet or blue-sensitive 1) and MWS/LWS along with rod RH1. Humans and some other higher primates evolved the new visual pigment, MWS, and acquired trichromatic vision. Marine mammals (cetaceans and pinnipeds) and some species of other orders have lost also the visual pigment SWS1, probably due to specificity of processing the information received by these cones. Current view on mammals' vision with two cone pigments and rods is presented. Data on maximum spectral sensitivity of visual pigments in different species and orders are given along with data on spatial contrast sensation. High visual acuity has been acquired by ungulates, artiodactyls, and primates, while the highest one--by humans with their specialized fovea.

  16. Solid modeling of fossil small mammal teeth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marschallinger, Robert; Hofmann, Peter; Daxner-Höck, Gudrun; Ketcham, Richard A.

    2011-09-01

    This paper presents an approach to create solid models of fossil small mammal teeth using a combination of microcomputed tomography, object based image analysis and voxel modeling. Small mammal teeth, because of their durability, are widely found in Cenozioc sediments the world over and play a key role in stratigraphy as well as in researching the rapid evolution and the paleogeographic spreading of small mammals. Recent advances in microcomputed tomography make this non-destructive analysis method an ideal data source for high-resolution 3D models of fossil small animal teeth. To derive internally consistent solid models of such fossils from micro-CT imagery, we propose a combination of 3D object based image analysis and solid modeling. Incorporating paleontological expert knowledge in the image processing cycle, object based image analysis yields topologically consistent image stacks classified by the main tooth components—enamel, dentine and pulp. Forwarding these data to a voxel modeling system, they can be quantitatively analyzed in an unprecedented manner: going beyond the possibilities of the state-of-art surface models, solid models are capable of unambiguously portraying the entire object volume—teeth can be peeled by material properties, subvolumes can be extracted and automatically analyzed by Boolean operations. The proposed method, which can be flexibly extended to handle a range of paleontological and geological micro-objects, is demonstrated with two typical fossil small mammal teeth.

  17. Mammals of the Savannah River Site

    SciTech Connect

    Cothran, E.G.; Smith, M.H.; Wolff, J.O.; Gentry, J.B.

    1991-12-31

    This book is designed to be used as a field guide, reference book, bibliography, and introduction to the basic biology and ecology of the 54 mammal species that currently or potentially exist on or near the Savannah River Site (SRS). For 50 of these species, we present basic descriptions, distinguishing morphological features, distribution and habitat preferences, food habits, reproductive biology, social behavior, ecological relationships with other species, and economic importance to man. For those species that have been studied on the SRS, we summarize the results of these studies. Keys and illustrations are provided for whole body and skull identification. A selected glossary defines technical terminology. Illustrations of tracks of the more common larger mammals will assist in field identifications. We also summarize the results of two major long-term SRS studies, ``The Forbearer Census`` and ``White-tailed Deer Studies``. A cross-indexed list of over 300 SRS publications on mammals classifies each publication by 23 categories such as habitat, reproduction, genetics, etc., and also for each mammal species. The 149 Master`s theses and Ph.D. dissertations that have been conducted at the Savannah River Ecology Laboratory are provided as additional references.

  18. Mammals of the Savannah River Site

    SciTech Connect

    Cothran, E.G.; Smith, M.H.; Wolff, J.O.; Gentry, J.B.

    1991-01-01

    This book is designed to be used as a field guide, reference book, bibliography, and introduction to the basic biology and ecology of the 54 mammal species that currently or potentially exist on or near the Savannah River Site (SRS). For 50 of these species, we present basic descriptions, distinguishing morphological features, distribution and habitat preferences, food habits, reproductive biology, social behavior, ecological relationships with other species, and economic importance to man. For those species that have been studied on the SRS, we summarize the results of these studies. Keys and illustrations are provided for whole body and skull identification. A selected glossary defines technical terminology. Illustrations of tracks of the more common larger mammals will assist in field identifications. We also summarize the results of two major long-term SRS studies, The Forbearer Census'' and White-tailed Deer Studies''. A cross-indexed list of over 300 SRS publications on mammals classifies each publication by 23 categories such as habitat, reproduction, genetics, etc., and also for each mammal species. The 149 Master's theses and Ph.D. dissertations that have been conducted at the Savannah River Ecology Laboratory are provided as additional references.

  19. Predictive Spatial Analysis of Marine Mammal Habitats

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-01-01

    valid OMB control number. PLEASE DO NOT RETURN YOUR FORM TO THE ABOVE ORGANIZATION. 1. REPORT DATE (DD-MM-YYYY) 2. REPORT TYPE 3. DATES COVERED... type of platform, begin/end date and number of marine mammals observed. Provider identifiers correspond to Dalhousie University (DU), Duke University...select the preferred color-coding option from “Output type .”........................................................................................43

  20. 75 FR 16754 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to Conducting Precision...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-04-02

    ... of Marine Mammals Incidental to Conducting Precision Strike Weapons Testing and Training by Eglin Air... testing and training during Precision Strike Weapons (PSW) tests in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM), a...

  1. 76 FR 7548 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking of Marine Mammals Incidental to Conducting Precision...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-02-10

    ... of Marine Mammals Incidental to Conducting Precision Strike Weapons Testing and Training by Eglin Air... testing and training during Precision Strike Weapons (PSW) testing and training in the Gulf of Mexico...

  2. Adaptive features of aquatic mammals' eye.

    PubMed

    Mass, Alla M; Supin, Alexander Ya

    2007-06-01

    The eye of aquatic mammals demonstrates several adaptations to both underwater and aerial vision. This study offers a review of eye anatomy in four groups of aquatic animals: cetaceans (toothed and baleen whales), pinnipeds (seals, sea lions, and walruses), sirenians (manatees and dugongs), and sea otters. Eye anatomy and optics, retinal laminar morphology, and topography of ganglion cell distribution are discussed with particular reference to aquatic specializations for underwater versus aerial vision. Aquatic mammals display emmetropia (i.e., refraction of light to focus on the retina) while submerged, and most have mechanisms to achieve emmetropia above water to counter the resulting aerial myopia. As underwater vision necessitates adjusting to wide variations in luminosity, iris muscle contractions create species-specific pupil shapes that regulate the amount of light entering the pupil and, in pinnipeds, work in conjunction with a reflective optic tapetum. The retina of aquatic mammals is similar to that of nocturnal terrestrial mammals in containing mainly rod photoreceptors and a minor number of cones (however, residual color vision may take place). A characteristic feature of the cetacean and pinniped retina is the large size of ganglion cells separated by wide intercellular spaces. Studies of topographic distribution of ganglion cells in the retina of cetaceans revealed two areas of ganglion cell concentration (the best-vision areas) located in the temporal and nasal quadrants; pinnipeds, sirenians, and sea otters have only one such area. In general, the visual system of marine mammals demonstrates a high degree of development and several specific features associated with adaptation for vision in both the aquatic and aerial environments.

  3. Effects of roads on small mammals

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Adams, L.W.; Geis, A.D.

    1983-01-01

    (1) The study was designed to determine the effects of roads on the diversity, spatial distribution, and density of small mammals. (2) Forty species of small mammal (5859 individuals) were snap-trapped in the study. Data resulted from 144 360 trap-nights of effort for an average of 4.06 captures per 100 trap-nights. (3) Small mammal community structure and density were both influenced by roads. Community structure in right-of-way (ROW) habitat was different from that in adjacent habitat. Five species did not prefer ROW habitat: the golden mouse, dusky-footed woodrat, brush mouse, pinon mouse, and California red-backed vole. However, there were more species present in ROW habitat than in adjacent habitat. Grassland species generally preferred ROW habitat and many less habitat-specific species were distributed in ROW and adjacent habitat. (4) Small mammal density (all species combined) was greater in interstate ROW habitat than in adjacent habitat. This was also true individually for the eastern harvest mouse, white-footed mouse, meadow vole, prairie vole, vagrant shrew. Townsend's vole, and California vole. Small mammal density was less in county road ROWs than in adjacent habitat, probably because of the small size of these areas. The data indicate that ROW habitat and its accompanying edge are attractive no: only to grassland species but also to many less habitat-specific species that make use of the ROW-edge-adjacent habitat complex. (5) Mortality on interstate highways was greatest for those species with highest densities in ROW habitat, and did not appear to be detrimental to populations of these species.

  4. Modeling the effects of fire severity and spatial complexity on Small Mammals in Yosemite National Park, California

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Roberts, Susan L.; Van Wagtendonk, Jan W.; Miles, A. Keith; Kelt, Douglas A.; Lutz, James A.

    2008-01-01

    We evaluated the impact of fire severity and related spatial and vegetative parameters on small mammal populations in 2 yr- to 15 yr-old burns in Yosemite National Park, California, USA. We also developed habitat models that would predict small mammal responses to fires of differing severity. We hypothesized that fire severity would influence the abundances of small mammals through changes in vegetation composition, structure, and spatial habitat complexity. Deer mouse (Peromyscus maniculatus) abundance responded negatively to fire severity, and brush mouse (P. boylii) abundance increased with increasing oak tree (Quercus spp.) cover. Chipmunk (Neotamias spp.) abundance was best predicted through a combination of a negative response to oak tree cover and a positive response to spatial habitat complexity. California ground squirrel (Spermophilus beecheyi) abundance increased with increasing spatial habitat complexity. Our results suggest that fire severity, with subsequent changes in vegetation structure and habitat spatial complexity, can influence small mammal abundance patterns.

  5. 76 FR 28423 - Marine Mammals; File No. 14259

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-05-17

    ... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XA150 Marine Mammals; File No. 14259 AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce..., analyze, and archive marine mammal parts for scientific research. ADDRESSES: The permit and...

  6. 75 FR 23241 - Marine Mammals; File No. 14514

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-05-03

    ... harvests; from marine mammals caught incidental to fisheries; or from animals in foreign countries... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XW11 Marine Mammals; File No. 14514 AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA),...

  7. 77 FR 25145 - Marine Mammals; File No. 978-1857

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-04-27

    ....D., Marine Mammal Research Program, Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology, P.O. Box 1106, Kailua... conduct acoustic studies on captive marine mammals at the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology through...

  8. [Fleas of small mammals from the northeastern Russian Far East].

    PubMed

    Medvedev, S G; Dokuchaev, N E; Tret'iakov, K A; Iamborko, A V; Kiselev, S V

    2014-01-01

    Results of the study of fleas (Siphonaptera) collected from small mammals (insectivores and rodents) in the Russian Far East (Magadan Province, and Khabarovsk and Kamchatka Territories) are represented. Fourteen flea species were revealed in 17 species of small mammals.

  9. Molecular cloning and evolutionary analysis of GJB6 in mammals.

    PubMed

    Ru, Binghua; Han, Naijian; He, Guimei; Brayer, Kathryn; Zhang, Shuyi; Wang, Zhe

    2012-04-01

    GJB6 plays a crucial role in hearing. In mammals, bats use ultrasonic echolocation for orientation and locating prey. To investigate the evolution of GJB6 in mammals, we cloned the full-length coding region of GJB6 from 16 species of bats and 4 other mammal species and compared them with orthologous sequences in 11 other mammals. The results show purifying selection on GJB6 in mammals, as well as in the bat lineage, which indicates an important role for GJB6 in mammal hearing. We also found one unique amino acid substitution shared by 16 species of bats and 10 shared by two species of artiodactyls. This positioned the artiodactyls at an abnormal location in the gene tree. In addition, the cytoplasmic loop and carboxy terminus were more variable than other domains in all the mammals. These results demonstrate that GJB6 is basically conserved in mammals but has undergone relatively rapid evolution in particular lineages and domains.

  10. 78 FR 23746 - Marine Mammals; File No. 17298

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-04-22

    ... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XC218 Marine Mammals; File No. 17298 AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce..., export, and receive marine mammal parts for scientific research. ADDRESSES: The permit and...

  11. 77 FR 19649 - Marine Mammals; File No. 17029

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-04-02

    ... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648- XA938 Marine Mammals; File No. 17029 AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Commerce... 59851 to receive, import, export, and possess marine mammal specimens for scientific research....

  12. 77 FR 29969 - Marine Mammal Stock Assessment Reports

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-05-21

    ...As required by the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), NMFS has incorporated public comments into revisions of marine mammal stock assessment reports (SARs). The 2011 reports are final and available to the...

  13. Effects of tillage practices and carbofuran exposure on small mammals

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Albers, P.H.; Linder, G.; Nichols, J.D.

    1990-01-01

    We compared population estimates, body mass, movement, and blood chemistry of small mammals between conventionally tilled and no-till cornfields in Maryland and Pennsylvania to evaluate the effects of tillage practices and carbofuran exposure on small mammals.

  14. 77 FR 48967 - Marine Mammals; File No. 17350

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-08-15

    ... marine mammals of the following species: bearded seal (Erignathus ] barbatus), ringed seal (Phoca hispida... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XC067 Marine Mammals; File No. 17350 AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA),...

  15. Evolution and Coevolution of PRC2 Genes in Vertebrates and Mammals.

    PubMed

    Liu, Xi; Yang, Jingwen; Wu, Nan; Song, Ruixian; Zhu, Hao

    2015-01-01

    Recruited by noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) to specific genomic sites, polycomb repressive complexes 2 (PRC2) modify chromatin states in nearly all eukaryotes. The limited ncRNAs in Drosophila but abundant in mammals should have made PRC2 genes evolved significantly in Deuterostomia to adapt to the much increased ncRNAs. This study analyzes the evolution and coevolution of seven PRC2 genes in 29 Deuterostomia. These genes, previously assumed highly conserved, are found to have obtained multiple insertions in vertebrates and mammals and undergone significant positive selections in marsupials and prosimians, indicating adaptions to substantially increased lncRNAs (long noncoding RNAs) in mammals and in primates. Some insertions occur notably in homologous sequences of human nonsense-mediated decay (NMD) transcripts. Moreover, positive selections and signals of convergent evolution imply the independent increase of lncRNAs in mammals and in primates. Coevolutionary analysis reveals that patterns of interaction between PRC2 proteins have also much evolved from vertebrates to mammals, indicating adaptation at the protein complex level. The potential functions of mammalian-specific insertions and NMD transcripts deserve further experimental examination.

  16. The oldest modern therian mammal from Europe and its bearing on stem marsupial paleobiogeography

    PubMed Central

    Vullo, Romain; Gheerbrant, Emmanuel; de Muizon, Christian; Néraudeau, Didier

    2009-01-01

    We report the discovery of mammalian tribosphenic teeth from the basal Cenomanian of southwestern France that we refer to a new primitive marsupial-like form identified as a basal taxon of Marsupialiformes, a new clade recognized here to include the crown group Marsupialia and primitive stem lineages more closely related to Marsupialia than to Deltatheroida. Arcantiodelphys marchandi gen et sp nov. shares several significant marsupial-like features (s.l.) with marsupialiform taxa known from the North American Mid-Cretaceous. Among marsupialiforms, it shows a closer resemblance to Dakotadens. This resemblance, which is plesiomorphic within “tribotherians,” makes Arcantiodelphys one of the most archaic known Marsupialiformes. Moreover, Arcantiodelphys is characterized by an original and precocious crushing specialization. Both the plesiomorphic and autapomorphic characteristics of Arcantiodelphys among Marsupialiformes might be explained by an Eastern origin from Asian stem metatherians, with some in situ European evolution. In addition, the presence of a mammal with North American affinities in western Europe during the early Late Cretaceous provides further evidence of a large Euramerican biogeographical province at this age or slightly before. Concerning the paleobiogeographical history of the first stem marsupialiforms during the Albian–Cenomanian interval, 2 possible dispersal routes from an Asian metatherian ancestry can be proposed: Asia to Europe via North America and Asia to North America via Europe. The main significance of the Archingeay-Les Nouillers mammal discovery is that it indicates that the beginning of the stem marsupialiforms history involved not only North America but also Europe, and that this early history in Europe remains virtually unknown. PMID:19892730

  17. The oldest modern therian mammal from Europe and its bearing on stem marsupial paleobiogeography.

    PubMed

    Vullo, Romain; Gheerbrant, Emmanuel; de Muizon, Christian; Néraudeau, Didier

    2009-11-24

    We report the discovery of mammalian tribosphenic teeth from the basal Cenomanian of southwestern France that we refer to a new primitive marsupial-like form identified as a basal taxon of Marsupialiformes, a new clade recognized here to include the crown group Marsupialia and primitive stem lineages more closely related to Marsupialia than to Deltatheroida. Arcantiodelphys marchandi gen et sp nov. shares several significant marsupial-like features (s.l.) with marsupialiform taxa known from the North American Mid-Cretaceous. Among marsupialiforms, it shows a closer resemblance to Dakotadens. This resemblance, which is plesiomorphic within "tribotherians," makes Arcantiodelphys one of the most archaic known Marsupialiformes. Moreover, Arcantiodelphys is characterized by an original and precocious crushing specialization. Both the plesiomorphic and autapomorphic characteristics of Arcantiodelphys among Marsupialiformes might be explained by an Eastern origin from Asian stem metatherians, with some in situ European evolution. In addition, the presence of a mammal with North American affinities in western Europe during the early Late Cretaceous provides further evidence of a large Euramerican biogeographical province at this age or slightly before. Concerning the paleobiogeographical history of the first stem marsupialiforms during the Albian-Cenomanian interval, 2 possible dispersal routes from an Asian metatherian ancestry can be proposed: Asia to Europe via North America and Asia to North America via Europe. The main significance of the Archingeay-Les Nouillers mammal discovery is that it indicates that the beginning of the stem marsupialiforms history involved not only North America but also Europe, and that this early history in Europe remains virtually unknown.

  18. Improving Visual Survey Capabilities for Marine Mammal Studies

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-09-30

    1 DISTRIBUTION STATEMENT A. Approved for public release; distribution is unlimited. Improving visual survey capabilities for marine mammal...information on the occurrence, abundance, and status of marine mammals is typically derived from visual surveys, and data from such surveys are most often...ONR Marine Mammals and Biology (MMB) program has funded a project to conduct marine mammal visual surveys in the Bay of Bengal as part of the ONR

  19. 76 FR 32222 - Endangered Species; Marine Mammals; Issuance of Permits

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-06-03

    ... Fish and Wildlife Service Endangered Species; Marine Mammals; Issuance of Permits AGENCY: Fish and..., marine mammals, or both. We issue these permits under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and Marine Mammal.... 27787A Virginia Aquarium & 76 FR 2408; January February 15, 2011. Marine Science 13, 2011. Center....

  20. 77 FR 74507 - Endangered Species; Marine Mammals; Issuance of Permits

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-12-14

    ... Fish and Wildlife Service Endangered Species; Marine Mammals; Issuance of Permits AGENCY: Fish and..., marine mammals, or both. We issue these permits under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and Marine Mammal... Gary Benmark 77 FR 41198; July 12, 2012 August 18, 2012. 045532 NOAA/National Marine 77 FR 41198;...

  1. 77 FR 56613 - Marine Mammals; File No. 16325

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-09-13

    ...-XB042 Marine Mammals; File No. 16325 AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), National Oceanic... Holway Avenue, Provincetown, MA 02657 to conduct research on marine mammals. ADDRESSES: The permit and... applicant. The requested permit has been issued under the authority of the Marine Mammal Protection Act...

  2. 76 FR 57758 - Endangered Species; Marine Mammals; Issuance of Permits

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-09-16

    ... Service (Service), have issued the following permits to conduct certain activities with endangered species, marine mammals, or both. We issue these permits under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and Marine Mammal... Fish and Wildlife Service Endangered Species; Marine Mammals; Issuance of Permits AGENCY: Fish...

  3. The evolutionary origin of jaw yaw in mammals

    PubMed Central

    Grossnickle, David M.

    2017-01-01

    Theria comprises all but three living mammalian genera and is one of the most ecologically pervasive clades on Earth. Yet, the origin and early history of therians and their close relatives (i.e., cladotherians) remains surprisingly enigmatic. A critical biological function that can be compared among early mammal groups is mastication. Morphometrics and modeling analyses of the jaws of Mesozoic mammals indicate that cladotherians evolved musculoskeletal anatomies that increase mechanical advantage during jaw rotation around a dorsoventrally-oriented axis (i.e., yaw) while decreasing the mechanical advantage of jaw rotation around a mediolaterally-oriented axis (i.e., pitch). These changes parallel molar transformations in early cladotherians that indicate their chewing cycles included significant transverse movement, likely produced via yaw rotation. Thus, I hypothesize that cladotherian molar morphologies and musculoskeletal jaw anatomies evolved concurrently with increased yaw rotation of the jaw during chewing cycles. The increased transverse movement resulting from yaw rotation may have been a crucial evolutionary prerequisite for the functionally versatile tribosphenic molar morphology, which underlies the molars of all therians and is retained by many extant clades. PMID:28322334

  4. Ancestral TSH mechanism signals summer in a photoperiodic mammal.

    PubMed

    Hanon, Elodie A; Lincoln, Gerald A; Fustin, Jean-Michel; Dardente, Hugues; Masson-Pévet, Mireille; Morgan, Peter J; Hazlerigg, David G

    2008-08-05

    In mammals, day-length-sensitive (photoperiodic) seasonal breeding cycles depend on the pineal hormone melatonin, which modulates secretion of reproductive hormones by the anterior pituitary gland [1]. It is thought that melatonin acts in the hypothalamus to control reproduction through the release of neurosecretory signals into the pituitary portal blood supply, where they act on pituitary endocrine cells [2]. Contrastingly, we show here that during the reproductive response of Soay sheep exposed to summer day lengths, the reverse applies: Melatonin acts directly on anterior-pituitary cells, and these then relay the photoperiodic message back into the hypothalamus to control neuroendocrine output. The switch to long days causes melatonin-responsive cells in the pars tuberalis (PT) of the anterior pituitary to increase production of thyrotrophin (TSH). This acts locally on TSH-receptor-expressing cells in the adjacent mediobasal hypothalamus, leading to increased expression of type II thyroid hormone deiodinase (DIO2). DIO2 initiates the summer response by increasing hypothalamic tri-iodothyronine (T3) levels. These data and recent findings in quail [3] indicate that the TSH-expressing cells of the PT play an ancestral role in seasonal reproductive control in vertebrates. In mammals this provides the missing link between the pineal melatonin signal and thyroid-dependent seasonal biology.

  5. The evolutionary origin of jaw yaw in mammals.

    PubMed

    Grossnickle, David M

    2017-03-21

    Theria comprises all but three living mammalian genera and is one of the most ecologically pervasive clades on Earth. Yet, the origin and early history of therians and their close relatives (i.e., cladotherians) remains surprisingly enigmatic. A critical biological function that can be compared among early mammal groups is mastication. Morphometrics and modeling analyses of the jaws of Mesozoic mammals indicate that cladotherians evolved musculoskeletal anatomies that increase mechanical advantage during jaw rotation around a dorsoventrally-oriented axis (i.e., yaw) while decreasing the mechanical advantage of jaw rotation around a mediolaterally-oriented axis (i.e., pitch). These changes parallel molar transformations in early cladotherians that indicate their chewing cycles included significant transverse movement, likely produced via yaw rotation. Thus, I hypothesize that cladotherian molar morphologies and musculoskeletal jaw anatomies evolved concurrently with increased yaw rotation of the jaw during chewing cycles. The increased transverse movement resulting from yaw rotation may have been a crucial evolutionary prerequisite for the functionally versatile tribosphenic molar morphology, which underlies the molars of all therians and is retained by many extant clades.

  6. Pathophysiological analyses of cortical malformation using gyrencephalic mammals

    PubMed Central

    Masuda, Kosuke; Toda, Tomohisa; Shinmyo, Yohei; Ebisu, Haruka; Hoshiba, Yoshio; Wakimoto, Mayu; Ichikawa, Yoshie; Kawasaki, Hiroshi

    2015-01-01

    One of the most prominent features of the cerebral cortex of higher mammals is the presence of gyri. Because malformations of the cortical gyri are associated with severe disability in brain function, the mechanisms underlying malformations of the cortical gyri have been of great interest. Combining gyrencephalic carnivore ferrets and genetic manipulations using in utero electroporation, here we successfully recapitulated the cortical phenotypes of thanatophoric dysplasia (TD) by expressing fibroblast growth factor 8 in the ferret cerebral cortex. Strikingly, in contrast to TD mice, our TD ferret model showed not only megalencephaly but also polymicrogyria. We further uncovered that outer radial glial cells (oRGs) and intermediate progenitor cells (IPs) were markedly increased. Because it has been proposed that increased oRGs and/or IPs resulted in the appearance of cortical gyri during evolution, it seemed possible that increased oRGs and IPs underlie the pathogenesis of polymicrogyria. Our findings should help shed light on the molecular mechanisms underlying the formation and malformation of cortical gyri in higher mammals. PMID:26482531

  7. Utilizing new Mammal faunas for calibration of paleomagnetostratigraphy in the Kochkor basin, Kyrgyzstan.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McLaughlin, W. N. F.; Weldon, R. J.; Abdrakhmatov, K.; Hopkins, S. S. B.

    2015-12-01

    Kyrgyzstan is the most seismically active nation in the world, owning to the uplift of the Tien Shan mountain range. This record of faulting is far from simple though, with different dates of initiation spanning tens of millions of years in the published literature. Differentiating between these extremes is vital in terms of constructing earthquake hazard maps for the country. Much of the high degree of uncertainty comes from a lack of datable rocks within the time frame associated with the faulting. While paleomagnetic stratigraphic analyses provide highly accurate ages, they in turn need calibration points to preclude multiple possible matches to a global geochronological framework. Herein I provide the first description of Neogene fossil mammal faunas to act as biostratigraphic control for the paleomagnetic data. Dominating the faunal assemblage is rhinoceros species, Chilotherium anderssoni. This taxon is globally only known from 8.7-5.3 million years ago, constraining much of the stratigraphy to the latest Miocene to Pliocene. Additional taxa include Gazella, Samotherium, Hipparion, Hyaenaictithirium, Paleolagus, and Pliocervidae. As fossils are limited to the Miocene/Pliocene Chu Formation, we have also collected additional paleomagnetic samples from the lower Shamsi Formation to extend the age range covered and constraint the initiation of faulting.

  8. Reconstructing the migration patterns of late Pleistocene mammals from northern Florida, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hoppe, Kathryn A.; Koch, Paul L.

    2007-11-01

    We used analyses of the strontium isotope ( 87Sr/ 86Sr) ratios of tooth enamel to reconstruct the migration patterns of fossil mammals collected along the Aucilla River in northern Florida. Specimens date to the late-glacial period and before the last glacial maximum (pre-LGM). Deer and tapir displayed low 87Sr/ 86Sr ratios that were similar to the ratios of Florida environments, which suggest that these taxa did not migrate long distance outside of the Florida region. Mastodons, mammoths, and equids all displayed a wide range of 87Sr/ 86Sr ratios. Some individuals in each taxon displayed low 87Sr/ 86Sr ratios that suggest they ranged locally, while other animals had high 87Sr/ 86Sr ratios that suggest they migrated long distances (> 150 km) outside of the Florida region. Mastodons were the only taxa from this region that provided enough well-dated specimens to compare changes in migration patterns over time. Pre-LGM mastodons displayed significantly lower 87Sr/ 86Sr ratios than late-glacial mastodons, which suggests that late-glacial mastodons from Florida migrated longer distances than their earlier counterparts. This change in movement patterns reflects temporal changes in regional vegetation patterns.

  9. Comparative analysis of encephalization in mammals reveals relaxed constraints on anthropoid primate and cetacean brain scaling.

    PubMed

    Boddy, A M; McGowen, M R; Sherwood, C C; Grossman, L I; Goodman, M; Wildman, D E

    2012-05-01

    There is a well-established allometric relationship between brain and body mass in mammals. Deviation of relatively increased brain size from this pattern appears to coincide with enhanced cognitive abilities. To examine whether there is a phylogenetic structure to such episodes of changes in encephalization across mammals, we used phylogenetic techniques to analyse brain mass, body mass and encephalization quotient (EQ) among 630 extant mammalian species. Among all mammals, anthropoid primates and odontocete cetaceans have significantly greater variance in EQ, suggesting that evolutionary constraints that result in a strict correlation between brain and body mass have independently become relaxed. Moreover, ancestral state reconstructions of absolute brain mass, body mass and EQ revealed patterns of increase and decrease in EQ within anthropoid primates and cetaceans. We propose both neutral drift and selective factors may have played a role in the evolution of brain-body allometry.

  10. Trends in North American small mammals found in common barn-owl (Tyto alba) dietary studies

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, D.R.; Bunck, C.M.

    1991-01-01

    Data on mammals were compiled from published studies of common barn-owl (Tyto alba) pellets. Mammalian composition of pellet samples was analyzed within geographic regions in regard to year, mean annual precipitation, latitude, and number of individual mammals in the sample. Percentages of individuals in pellets that were shrews increased whereas the percentages of rodents decreased with greater mean annual precipitation, especially in northern and western areas of North America. From the 1920s through 1980s, in northern and eastern areas the percentage of species that was shrews decreased, and in northern and central areas the percentage of individuals that was murid rats and mice increased. Human alterations of habitats during these seven decades are postulated to have caused changes in available small mammals, leading to changes in the barn-owl diet.

  11. 77 FR 21539 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Sturgeon Research in the...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-04-10

    ... National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XB094 Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Sturgeon Research in the Gulf of Mexico AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries... of marine mammals incidental to conducting sturgeon research in the Gulf of Mexico, over the...

  12. An Analysis of Marine Mammal Self-Reports and Observer Reports from 1996-2014

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McFarland, M. H.

    2015-12-01

    Over the past two decades commercial fishing vessel owners have been reporting their interactions with marine mammals in accordance with Section 118 of the Marine Mammal Protection Act. The objective of this study is to analyze marine mammal fisheries interactions data from fishermen self-reports and observer reports. We analyzed self-reports from 1996 - 2014 and Pacific Islands observer data from 2001 - 2014, and Northeast observer data from 1996 - 2014. We identify trends in the national marine mammal mortality/injury (M/I) self-report dataset; identify presence of complementary reports between self-reports and observer reports; and determine the compliance rate of self-reports and observer reports. The results of the self-report analysis indicate that the Greater Atlantic Region (GAR) receives the most M/I reports of the five National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) regional offices. The rate of animals reported as killed is three times higher than the rate for animals injured. Dolphins and porpoises are the most frequently reported species and gillnets are the most frequently reported gear type. This study will provide fisheries managers a greater understanding of the effectiveness of the requirement for fishermen to report moralities and injuries of marine mammals incidentally taken during commercial fishing operations. Refinements to the Marine Mammal Authorization Program (MMAP) reporting form will provide more accurate estimates of the M/I rate of marine mammals in each region and will help address the challenges with collecting self-reported incidental take data. Furthermore, the results can be used by managers to determine if self-reporting is informative and should be continued, with form improvements made to increase accuracy, or if the corresponding observer reports serve as sufficient data by themselves.

  13. Synchronous extinction of North America's Pleistocene mammals.

    PubMed

    Faith, J Tyler; Surovell, Todd A

    2009-12-08

    The late Pleistocene witnessed the extinction of 35 genera of North American mammals. The last appearance dates of 16 of these genera securely fall between 12,000 and 10,000 radiocarbon years ago (approximately 13,800-11,400 calendar years B.P.), although whether the absence of fossil occurrences for the remaining 19 genera from this time interval is the result of sampling error or temporally staggered extinctions is unclear. Analysis of the chronology of extinctions suggests that sampling error can explain the absence of terminal Pleistocene last appearance dates for the remaining 19 genera. The extinction chronology of North American Pleistocene mammals therefore can be characterized as a synchronous event that took place 12,000-10,000 radiocarbon years B.P. Results favor an extinction mechanism that is capable of wiping out up to 35 genera across a continent in a geologic instant.

  14. Panamanian forest mammals as carriers of Salmonella.

    PubMed

    Kourany, M; Bowdre, L; Herrer, A

    1976-05-01

    Enteric bacteria pathogenic to man were sought in a total of 974 forest mammals collected from a variety of sites in rural and jungle areas of Panamá. The highest incidence of infection among the mammals was observed during the Panamanian dry season, which normally extends from January through April. A minimum of 10 Salmonella serotypes including, three of the Arizona group and Ewardsiella tarda, was isolated. Opossums of the genera Philander, 11 of 54 (20.1%), and Didelphis, 12 of 102 (11.8%) demonstrated high infection rates. One sloth of the genus Choloepus and specimens of two genera of rodents also were infected to varying degrees: 1(11.1%) of 9 Choloepus, 8 (1.1%) of 704 Proechimys and 1 (16.7%) of 6 Diplomys.

  15. Chromosomal polymorphism in mammals: an evolutionary perspective.

    PubMed

    Dobigny, Gauthier; Britton-Davidian, Janice; Robinson, Terence J

    2017-02-01

    Although chromosome rearrangements (CRs) are central to studies of genome evolution, our understanding of the evolutionary consequences of the early stages of karyotypic differentiation (i.e. polymorphism), especially the non-meiotic impacts, is surprisingly limited. We review the available data on chromosomal polymorphisms in mammals so as to identify taxa that hold promise for developing a more comprehensive understanding of chromosomal change. In doing so, we address several key questions: (i) to what extent are mammalian karyotypes polymorphic, and what types of rearrangements are principally involved? (ii) Are some mammalian lineages more prone to chromosomal polymorphism than others? More specifically, do (karyotypically) polymorphic mammalian species belong to lineages that are also characterized by past, extensive karyotype repatterning? (iii) How long can chromosomal polymorphisms persist in mammals? We discuss the evolutionary implications of these questions and propose several research avenues that may shed light on the role of chromosome change in the diversification of mammalian populations and species.

  16. Synchronous extinction of North America's Pleistocene mammals

    PubMed Central

    Faith, J. Tyler; Surovell, Todd A.

    2009-01-01

    The late Pleistocene witnessed the extinction of 35 genera of North American mammals. The last appearance dates of 16 of these genera securely fall between 12,000 and 10,000 radiocarbon years ago (≈13,800–11,400 calendar years B.P.), although whether the absence of fossil occurrences for the remaining 19 genera from this time interval is the result of sampling error or temporally staggered extinctions is unclear. Analysis of the chronology of extinctions suggests that sampling error can explain the absence of terminal Pleistocene last appearance dates for the remaining 19 genera. The extinction chronology of North American Pleistocene mammals therefore can be characterized as a synchronous event that took place 12,000–10,000 radiocarbon years B.P. Results favor an extinction mechanism that is capable of wiping out up to 35 genera across a continent in a geologic instant. PMID:19934040

  17. The occurrence and ecology of Trichinella in marine mammals.

    PubMed

    Forbes, L B

    2000-12-01

    Trichinella in marine mammals has a circumpolar arctic distribution and a narrow range of host species. It is commonly found in polar bears (Ursus maritimus), and increasingly in walruses (Odobenus rosmarus) where it presents a significant zoonotic hazard. This has resulted in the implementation of food safety programs in some arctic communities to test harvested walrus meat for Trichinella larvae prior to consumption. Trichinella has been reported infrequently in bearded seals (Erignathus barbatus) and ringed seals (Phoca hispida), and was once observed in a Beluga whale (Delphinapterus leucas). Cannibalism is probably the most important factor in maintaining a Trichinella cycle in polar bears. Arctic carnivores such as polar bears, arctic foxes (Alopex lagopus) and domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) have a high prevalence of Trichinella infection and the carcasses of at least some of these animals are deposited in the ocean. Scavenging of these carcasses by walruses probably occurs, but may not account for the high prevalence the parasite seen in this host species. Predation, carrion feeding and cannibalism have been documented for walruses and a sylvatic cycle similar to that of bears may exist in walrus populations. Seals and whales are likely infected through infrequent exposure to infected carcasses, either directly by scavenging or indirectly by consuming amphipods or fish that have fed on infected carcasses. The inefficiency of this mechanism may account for the low prevalence of Trichinella in seals and whales. It is known that isolates from marine mammals are cold tolerant, and infectious for man, and have been identified as Trichinella nativa (T2). Molecular and other phylogenetic studies would be useful to facilitate studies on the inter-relationship of Trichinella cycles involving marine and terrestrial mammals in the arctic and subarctic, and in the investigation of human outbreaks of trichinellosis in these areas.

  18. Collaborating to conserve large mammals in Southeast Asia.

    PubMed

    Steinmetz, Robert; Chutipong, Wanlop; Seuaturien, Naret

    2006-10-01

    Depressed mammal densities characterize the interior of many Southeast Asian protected areas, and are the result of commercial and subsistence hunting. Local people are part of this problem but can participate in solutions through improved partnerships that incorporate local knowledge into problem diagnosis. The process of involving local people helps build a constituency that is more aware of its role (positive and negative) in a protected area and generates site-specific conservation assessments for management planning. We illustrate the practical details of initiating such a partnership through our work in a Thai wildlife sanctuary. Many protected areas in Southeast Asia present similar opportunities. In local workshops, village woodsmen were led through ranking exercises to develop a spatially explicit picture of 20-year trends in the abundance of 31 mammal species and to compare species-specific causes for declines. Within five taxonomic groups, leaf monkeys (primates), porcupines (rodents), tigers (large carnivores), civets (small carnivores), and elephants (ungulates) had declined most severely (37-74%). Commercial hunting contributed heavily to extensive population declines for most species, and subsistence hunting was locally significant for some small carnivores, leaf monkeys, and deer. Workshops thus clarified which species were at highest risk of local extinction, where the most threatened populations were, and causes for these patterns. Most important, they advanced a shared problem definition, thereby unlocking opportunities for collaboration. As a result, local people and sanctuary managers have increased communication, initiated joint monitoring and patrolling, and established wildlife recovery zones. Using local knowledge has limitations, but the process of engaging local people promotes collaborative action that large mammals in Southeast Asia need.

  19. Obesity Gene Atlas in Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Kunej, Tanja; Jevsinek Skok, Dasa; Zorc, Minja; Ogrinc, Ana; Michal, Jennifer J.; Kovac, Milena; Jiang, Zhihua

    2013-01-01

    Obesity in humans has increased at an alarming rate over the past two decades and has become one of the leading public health problems worldwide. Studies have revealed a large number of genes/markers that are associated with obesity and/or obesity-related phenotypes, indicating an urgent need to develop a central database for helping the community understand the genetic complexity of obesity. In the present study, we collected a total of 1,736 obesity associated loci and created a freely available obesity database, including 1,515 protein-coding genes and 221 microRNAs (miRNAs) collected from four mammalian species: human, cattle, rat, and mouse. These loci were integrated as orthologs on comparative genomic views in human, cattle, and mouse. The database and genomic views are freely available online at: http://www.integratomics-time.com/fat_deposition. Bioinformatics analyses of the collected data revealed some potential novel obesity related molecular markers which represent focal points for testing more targeted hypotheses and designing experiments for further studies. We believe that this centralized database on obesity and adipogenesis will facilitate development of comparative systems biology approaches to address this important health issue in human and their potential applications in animals. PMID:25031655

  20. Sperm competition drives the evolution of suicidal reproduction in mammals.

    PubMed

    Fisher, Diana O; Dickman, Christopher R; Jones, Menna E; Blomberg, Simon P

    2013-10-29

    Suicidal reproduction (semelparity) has evolved in only four genera of mammals. In these insectivorous marsupials, all males die after mating, when failure of the corticosteroid feedback mechanism elevates stress hormone levels during the mating season and causes lethal immune system collapse (die-off). We quantitatively test and resolve the evolutionary causes of this surprising and extreme life history strategy. We show that as marsupial predators in Australia, South America, and Papua New Guinea diversified into higher latitudes, seasonal predictability in abundance of their arthropod prey increased in multiple habitats. More-predictable prey peaks were associated with shorter annual breeding seasons, consistent with the suggestion that females accrue fitness benefits by timing peak energy demands of reproduction to coincide with maximum food abundance. We demonstrate that short mating seasons intensified reproductive competition between males, increasing male energy investment in copulations and reducing male postmating survival. However, predictability of annual prey cycles alone does not explain suicidal reproduction, because unlike insect abundance, peak ovulation dates in semelparous species are often synchronized to the day among years, triggered by a species-specific rate of change of photoperiod. Among species with low postmating male survival, we show that those with suicidal reproduction have shorter mating seasons and larger testes relative to body size. This indicates that lethal effort is adaptive in males because females escalate sperm competition by further shortening and synchronizing the annual mating period and mating promiscuously. We conclude that precopulatory sexual selection by females favored the evolution of suicidal reproduction in mammals.

  1. The Grinnell Project; Small Mammal Responses to Climate in California

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Conroy, C. C.; Koo, M.; Monahan, B.; Parra, J.; Moritz, C.

    2006-12-01

    Between 1915 and 1920, Joseph Grinnell and colleagues investigated the diversity of mammals, reptiles, amphibians and birds across what they termed the Yosemite Transect, an area spanning portions of the San Joaquin Valley, the Sierra Nevada, including about 1/3 of Yosemite National Park, and ending at Mono Lake. Their data collection included preservation of series of specimens at a large number of locations, point counts of birds, photography and extensive natural history notes, all of which are still archived at the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology at UC Berkeley. Beginning in 2003, researchers from the MVZ began retracing this work, collecting specimens, using point counts, and retaking some photographs. The comparison of the two periods indicates that some mammals have shifted their ranges greatly. Most taxa show an elevation increase, either an increase at the top for middle elevation species, or a retraction at the bottom for higher elevation species. However, not all species moved, and one high elevation species moved down. To further investigate how changes observed in Yosemite might also apply to larger spatial scales, our group has been using historic climate surfaces, historic specimen localities, and a variety of modeling methods to predict statewide changes in species' distributions. Other potential sites to be revisited include the Lassen Transect in Northern California, the Colorado River, and the San Bernardino Mountains.

  2. Paternal care and litter size coevolution in mammals

    PubMed Central

    Hobson, Liane

    2016-01-01

    Biparental care of offspring occurs in diverse mammalian genera and is particularly common among species with socially monogamous mating systems. Despite numerous well-documented examples, however, the evolutionary causes and consequences of paternal care in mammals are not well understood. Here, we investigate the evolution of paternal care in relation to offspring production. Using comparative analyses to test for evidence of evolutionary associations between male care and life-history traits, we explore if biparental care is likely to have evolved because of the importance of male care to offspring survival, or if evolutionary increases in offspring production are likely to result from the evolution of biparental care. Overall, we find no evidence that paternal care has evolved in response to benefits of supporting females to rear particularly costly large offspring or litters. Rather, our findings suggest that increases in offspring production are more likely to follow the evolution of paternal care, specifically where males contribute depreciable investment such as provisioning young. Through coevolution with litter size, we conclude that paternal care in mammals is likely to play an important role in stabilizing monogamous mating systems and could ultimately promote the evolution of complex social behaviours. PMID:27097924

  3. Sperm competition drives the evolution of suicidal reproduction in mammals

    PubMed Central

    Fisher, Diana O.; Dickman, Christopher R.; Jones, Menna E.; Blomberg, Simon P.

    2013-01-01

    Suicidal reproduction (semelparity) has evolved in only four genera of mammals. In these insectivorous marsupials, all males die after mating, when failure of the corticosteroid feedback mechanism elevates stress hormone levels during the mating season and causes lethal immune system collapse (die-off). We quantitatively test and resolve the evolutionary causes of this surprising and extreme life history strategy. We show that as marsupial predators in Australia, South America, and Papua New Guinea diversified into higher latitudes, seasonal predictability in abundance of their arthropod prey increased in multiple habitats. More-predictable prey peaks were associated with shorter annual breeding seasons, consistent with the suggestion that females accrue fitness benefits by timing peak energy demands of reproduction to coincide with maximum food abundance. We demonstrate that short mating seasons intensified reproductive competition between males, increasing male energy investment in copulations and reducing male postmating survival. However, predictability of annual prey cycles alone does not explain suicidal reproduction, because unlike insect abundance, peak ovulation dates in semelparous species are often synchronized to the day among years, triggered by a species-specific rate of change of photoperiod. Among species with low postmating male survival, we show that those with suicidal reproduction have shorter mating seasons and larger testes relative to body size. This indicates that lethal effort is adaptive in males because females escalate sperm competition by further shortening and synchronizing the annual mating period and mating promiscuously. We conclude that precopulatory sexual selection by females favored the evolution of suicidal reproduction in mammals. PMID:24101455

  4. Paternal care and litter size coevolution in mammals.

    PubMed

    Stockley, Paula; Hobson, Liane

    2016-04-27

    Biparental care of offspring occurs in diverse mammalian genera and is particularly common among species with socially monogamous mating systems. Despite numerous well-documented examples, however, the evolutionary causes and consequences of paternal care in mammals are not well understood. Here, we investigate the evolution of paternal care in relation to offspring production. Using comparative analyses to test for evidence of evolutionary associations between male care and life-history traits, we explore if biparental care is likely to have evolved because of the importance of male care to offspring survival, or if evolutionary increases in offspring production are likely to result from the evolution of biparental care. Overall, we find no evidence that paternal care has evolved in response to benefits of supporting females to rear particularly costly large offspring or litters. Rather, our findings suggest that increases in offspring production are more likely to follow the evolution of paternal care, specifically where males contribute depreciable investment such as provisioning young. Through coevolution with litter size, we conclude that paternal care in mammals is likely to play an important role in stabilizing monogamous mating systems and could ultimately promote the evolution of complex social behaviours.

  5. Water-energy dynamics, habitat heterogeneity, history, and broad-scale patterns of mammal diversity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferrer-Castán, Dolores; Morales-Barbero, Jennifer; Vetaas, Ole R.

    2016-11-01

    Numerous hypotheses on diversity patterns are often presented as if they were mutually exclusive. However, because of multicollinearity, correlational analyses are not able to distinguish the causal effects of different factors on these patterns. For this reason, we examine the interrelationships among current climate, habitat heterogeneity and evolutionary history by partitioning the variation in both total and non-volant mammal species richness in the Iberian Peninsula. Thus, it is possible to determine the variation accounted for by each one of these three components that is not shared by the others, and the respective overlaps. More specifically, we hypothesize that (H1) in warm temperate zones, a small increase in the available energy has strong negative effects on mammal richness if water availability is limiting; (H2) there are functional relationships between woody plant species richness (WOOD) and the richness of mammal species; (H3) there is a signal of evolutionary history in contemporary patterns of species richness, and (H4) mammal richness and the historical variable mean root distance (MRD) respond to the same driving forces. Additionally, we also test for spatial autocorrelation. We found a sharp nonlinear decrease in mammal richness with increasing energy and a monotonic increase with increasing water availability. Moreover, an interaction term between these two climate factors appeared to be statistically significant, so H1 could not be rejected. WOOD remained significant after partialling out both current climate and MRD at the family level (MRDf), supporting H2. The relationship between mammal diversity and MRD averaged by species richness was found to be spurious, but there appeared a significant historical signal using MRDf (this supports H3). The overlaps among these factors are consistent with H4 and suggest that water-energy dynamics have probably been active drivers throughout evolutionary history with habitat heterogeneity, and biotic

  6. Elk herbivory alters small mammal assemblages in high-elevation drainages.

    PubMed

    Parsons, Elliott W R; Maron, John L; Martin, Thomas E

    2013-03-01

    Heavy herbivory by ungulates can substantially alter habitat, but the indirect consequences of habitat modification for animal assemblages that rely on that habitat are not well studied. This is a particularly important topic given that climate change can alter plant-herbivore interactions. We explored short-term responses of small mammal communities to recent exclusion of Rocky Mountain elk (Cervus elaphus) in high-elevation riparian drainages in northern Arizona, where elk impacts on vegetation have increased over the past quarter century associated with climate change. We used 10-ha elk exclosures paired with unfenced control drainages to examine how browsing influenced the habitat use, relative abundance, richness and diversity of a small mammal assemblage. We found that the small mammal assemblage changed significantly after 5 years of elk exclusion. Relative abundance of voles (Microtus mexicanus) increased in exclosure drainages, likely due to an increase in habitat quality. The relative abundances of woodrats (Neotoma neomexicana) and two species of mice (Peromyscus maniculatus and P. boylii) decreased in the controls, while remaining stable in exclosures. The decline of mice in control drainages was likely due to the decline in shrub cover that they use. Thus, elk exclusion may have maintained or improved habitat for mice inside the exclosures while habitat quality and mouse abundance both declined outside the fences. Finally, small mammal species richness increased in the exclosures relative to the controls while species diversity showed no significant trends. Together, our results show that relaxation of heavy herbivore pressure by a widespread native ungulate can lead to rapid changes in small mammal assemblages. Moreover, exclusion of large herbivores can yield rapid responses by vegetation that may enhance or maintain habitat quality for small mammal populations.

  7. Future hotspots of terrestrial mammal loss

    PubMed Central

    Visconti, Piero; Pressey, Robert L.; Giorgini, Daniele; Maiorano, Luigi; Bakkenes, Michel; Boitani, Luigi; Alkemade, Rob; Falcucci, Alessandra; Chiozza, Federica; Rondinini, Carlo

    2011-01-01

    Current levels of endangerment and historical trends of species and habitats are the main criteria used to direct conservation efforts globally. Estimates of future declines, which might indicate different priorities than past declines, have been limited by the lack of appropriate data and models. Given that much of conservation is about anticipating and responding to future threats, our inability to look forward at a global scale has been a major constraint on effective action. Here, we assess the geography and extent of projected future changes in suitable habitat for terrestrial mammals within their present ranges. We used a global earth-system model, IMAGE, coupled with fine-scale habitat suitability models and parametrized according to four global scenarios of human development. We identified the most affected countries by 2050 for each scenario, assuming that no additional conservation actions other than those described in the scenarios take place. We found that, with some exceptions, most of the countries with the largest predicted losses of suitable habitat for mammals are in Africa and the Americas. African and North American countries were also predicted to host the most species with large proportional global declines. Most of the countries we identified as future hotspots of terrestrial mammal loss have little or no overlap with the present global conservation priorities, thus confirming the need for forward-looking analyses in conservation priority setting. The expected growth in human populations and consumption in hotspots of future mammal loss mean that local conservation actions such as protected areas might not be sufficient to mitigate losses. Other policies, directed towards the root causes of biodiversity loss, are required, both in Africa and other parts of the world. PMID:21844048

  8. Studies of Noise Compensation in Marine Mammals

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2011-09-30

    sound by marine mammals. OBJECTIVES The primary objective of this project is to test hypotheses regarding right whale vocal adjustment to...were fully tested by collecting data of exhibit noise and calls from beluga whales at the Mystic Aquarium to determine if captive beluga whales ...measurements have been obtained for the noise floor for the each recorder. Recordings of beluga whales were collected at Mystic Aquarium in 2010 (Figure 1

  9. CCN5 expression in mammals

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Jennifer A.; Gray, Mark R.; Oliveira, Beatriz Enes; Koch, Manuel

    2007-01-01

    The six proteins of the CCN family have important roles in development, angiogenesis, cell motility, proliferation, and other fundamental cell processes. To date, CCN5 distribution in developing rodents and humans has not been mapped comprehensively. CCN5 strongly inhibits adult smooth muscle cell proliferation and motility. Its anti-proliferative action predicts that CCN5 would not be present in developing tissues until the proliferation phase of tissue morphogenesis is complete. However, estrogen induces CCN5 expression in epithelial and smooth muscle cells, suggesting that CCN5 might be widely expressed in embryonic tissues exposed to high levels of estrogen. 9–16 day murine embryos and fetuses and 3–7 month human fetal tissues were analyzed by immunohistochemistry. CCN5 was detected in nearly all developing tissues. CCN5 protein expression was initially present in most tissues, and at later times in development tissue-specific expression differences were observed. CCN5 expression was particularly strong in vascular tissues, cardiac muscle, bronchioles, myotendinous junctions, and intestinal smooth muscle and epithelium. CCN5 expression was initially absent in bone cartilaginous forms but was increasingly expressed during bone endochondral ossification. Widespread CCN5 mRNA expression was detected in GD14.5 mice. Although CCN2 and CCN5 protein expression patterns in some adult pathologic conditions are inversely expressed, this expression pattern was not found in developing mouse and human tissues. The widespread expression pattern of CCN5 in most embryonic and fetal tissues suggests a diverse range of functions for CCN5. Electronic supplementary material The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s12079-007-0012-0) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users. PMID:18481203

  10. A comparative analysis of marine mammal tracheas.

    PubMed

    Moore, Colby; Moore, Michael; Trumble, Stephen; Niemeyer, Misty; Lentell, Betty; McLellan, William; Costidis, Alexander; Fahlman, Andreas

    2014-04-01

    In 1940, Scholander suggested that stiffened upper airways remained open and received air from highly compressible alveoli during marine mammal diving. There are few data available on the structural and functional adaptations of the marine mammal respiratory system. The aim of this research was to investigate the anatomical (gross) and structural (compliance) characteristics of excised marine mammal tracheas. Here, we defined different types of tracheal structures, categorizing pinniped tracheas by varying degrees of continuity of cartilage (categories 1-4) and cetacean tracheas by varying compliance values (categories 5A and 5B). Some tracheas fell into more than one category along their length; for example, the harbor seal (Phoca vitulina) demonstrated complete rings cranially, and as the trachea progressed caudally, tracheal rings changed morphology. Dolphins and porpoises had less stiff, more compliant spiraling rings while beaked whales had very stiff, less compliant spiraling rings. The pressure-volume (P-V) relationships of isolated tracheas from different species were measured to assess structural differences between species. These findings lend evidence for pressure-induced collapse and re-inflation of lungs, perhaps influencing variability in dive depth or ventilation rates of the species investigated.

  11. Global distribution and conservation of marine mammals

    PubMed Central

    Pompa, Sandra; Ehrlich, Paul R.; Ceballos, Gerardo

    2011-01-01

    We identified 20 global key conservation sites for all marine (123) and freshwater (6) mammal species based on their geographic ranges. We created geographic range maps for all 129 species and a Geographic Information System database for a 46,184 1° x 1° grid-cells, ∼10,000-km2. Patterns of species richness, endemism, and risk were variable among all species and species groups. Interestingly, marine mammal species richness was correlated strongly with areas of human impact across the oceans. Key conservation sites in the global geographic grid were determined either by their species richness or by their irreplaceability or uniqueness, because of the presence of endemic species. Nine key conservation sites, comprising the 2.5% of the grid cells with the highest species richness, were found, mostly in temperate latitudes, and hold 84% of marine mammal species. In addition, we identified 11 irreplaceable key conservation sites, six of which were found in freshwater bodies and five in marine regions. These key conservation sites represent critical areas of conservation value at a global level and can serve as a first step for adopting global strategies with explicit geographic conservation targets for Marine Protected Areas. PMID:21808012

  12. The Evolution of Brains from Early Mammals to Humans

    PubMed Central

    Kaas, Jon H.

    2012-01-01

    The large size and complex organization of the human brain makes it unique among primate brains. In particular, the neocortex constitutes about 80% of the brain, and this cortex is subdivided into a large number of functionally specialized regions, the cortical areas. Such a brain mediates accomplishments and abilities unmatched by any other species. How did such a brain evolve? Answers come from comparative studies of the brains of present-day mammals and other vertebrates in conjunction with information about brain sizes and shapes from the fossil record, studies of brain development, and principles derived from studies of scaling and optimal design. Early mammals were small, with small brains, an emphasis on olfaction, and little neocortex. Neocortex was transformed from the single layer of output pyramidal neurons of the dorsal cortex of earlier ancestors to the six layers of all present-day mammals. This small cap of neocortex was divided into 20–25 cortical areas, including primary and some of the secondary sensory areas that characterize neocortex in nearly all mammals today. Early placental mammals had a corpus callosum connecting the neocortex of the two hemispheres, a primary motor area, M1, and perhaps one or more premotor areas. One line of evolution, Euarchontoglires, led to present-day primates, tree shrews, flying lemurs, rodents and rabbits. Early primates evolved from small-brained, nocturnal, insect-eating mammals with an expanded region of temporal visual cortex. These early nocturnal primates were adapted to the fine branch niche of the tropical rainforest by having an even more expanded visual system that mediated visually guided reaching and grasping of insects, small vertebrates, and fruits. Neocortex was greatly expanded, and included an array of cortical areas that characterize neocortex of all living primates. Specializations of the visual system included new visual areas that contributed to a dorsal stream of visuomotor processing in a

  13. Comparative analysis of mitochondrial genomes in Diplura (hexapoda, arthropoda): taxon sampling is crucial for phylogenetic inferences.

    PubMed

    Chen, Wan-Jun; Koch, Markus; Mallatt, Jon M; Luan, Yun-Xia

    2014-01-01

    Two-pronged bristletails (Diplura) are traditionally classified into three major superfamilies: Campodeoidea, Projapygoidea, and Japygoidea. The interrelationships of these three superfamilies and the monophyly of Diplura have been much debated. Few previous studies included Projapygoidea in their phylogenetic considerations, and its position within Diplura still is a puzzle from both morphological and molecular points of view. Until now, no mitochondrial genome has been sequenced for any projapygoid species. To fill in this gap, we determined and annotated the complete mitochondrial genome of Octostigma sinensis (Octostigmatidae, Projapygoidea), and of three more dipluran species, one each from the Campodeidae, Parajapygidae, and Japygidae. All four newly sequenced dipluran mtDNAs encode the same set of genes in the same gene order as shared by most crustaceans and hexapods. Secondary structure truncations have occurred in trnR, trnC, trnS1, and trnS2, and the reduction of transfer RNA D-arms was found to be taxonomically correlated, with Campodeoidea having experienced the most reduction. Partitioned phylogenetic analyses, based on both amino acids and nucleotides of the protein-coding genes plus the ribosomal RNA genes, retrieve significant support for a monophyletic Diplura within Pancrustacea, with Projapygoidea more closely related to Campodeoidea than to Japygoidea. Another key finding is that monophyly of Diplura cannot be recovered unless Projapygoidea is included in the phylogenetic analyses; this explains the dipluran polyphyly found by past mitogenomic studies. Including Projapygoidea increased the sampling density within Diplura and probably helped by breaking up a long-branch-attraction artifact. This finding provides an example of how proper sampling is significant for phylogenetic inference.

  14. Morphometrics of the avian small intestine compared with that of nonflying mammals: a phylogenetic approach.

    PubMed

    Lavin, Shana R; Karasov, William H; Ives, Anthony R; Middleton, Kevin M; Garland, Theodore

    2008-01-01

    Flying animals may experience a selective constraint on gut volume because the energetic cost of flight increases and maneuverability decreases with greater digesta load. The small intestine is the primary site of absorption of most nutrients (e.g., carbohydrates, proteins, fat) in both birds and mammals. Therefore, we used a phylogenetically informed approach to compare small intestine morphometric measurements of birds with those of nonflying mammals and to test for effects of diet within each clade. We also compared the fit of nonphylogenetic and phylogenetic models to test for phylogenetic signal after accounting for effects of body mass, clade, and/or diet. We provide a new MATLAB program (Regressionv2.m) that facilitates a flexible model-fitting approach in comparative studies. As compared with nonflying mammals, birds had 51% less nominal small intestine surface area (area of a smooth bore tube) and 32% less volume. For animals <365 g in body mass, birds also had significantly shorter small intestines (20%-33% shorter, depending on body mass). Diet was also a significant factor explaining variation in small intestine nominal surface area of both birds and nonflying mammals, small intestine mass of mammals, and small intestine volume of both birds and nonflying mammals. On the basis of the phylogenetic trees used in our analyses, small intestine length and nominal surface area exhibited statistically significant phylogenetic signal in birds but not in mammals. Thus, for birds, related species tended to be similar in small intestine length and nominal surface area, even after accounting for relations with body mass and diet. A reduced small intestine in birds may decrease the capacity for breakdown and active absorption of nutrients. Birds do not seem to compensate for reduced digestive and absorptive capacity via a longer gut retention time of food, but we found some evidence that birds have an increased mucosal surface area via a greater villus area

  15. Eradication of invasive mammals on islands inhabited by humans and domestic animals.

    PubMed

    Oppel, Steffen; Beaven, Brent M; Bolton, Mark; Vickery, Juliet; Bodey, Thomas W

    2011-04-01

    Non-native invasive mammal species have caused major ecological change on many islands. To conserve native species diversity, invasive mammals have been eradicated from several islands not inhabited by humans. We reviewed the challenges associated with campaigns to eradicate invasive mammals from islands inhabited by humans and domestic animals. On these islands, detailed analyses of the social, cultural, and economic costs and benefits of eradication are required to increase the probability of local communities supporting the eradication campaign. The ecological benefits of eradication (e.g., improvement of endemic species' probability of survival) are difficult to trade-off against social and economic costs due to the lack of a common currency. Local communities may oppose an eradication campaign because of perceived health hazards, inconvenience, financial burdens, religious beliefs, or other cultural reasons. Besides these social challenges, the presence of humans and domestic animals also complicates eradication and biosecurity procedures (measures taken to reduce the probability of unwanted organisms colonizing an island to near zero). For example, houses, garbage-disposal areas, and livestock-feeding areas can provide refuges for certain mammals and therefore can decrease the probability of a successful eradication. Transport of humans and goods to an island increases the probability of inadvertent reintroduction of invasive mammals, and the establishment of permanent quarantine measures is required to minimize the probability of unwanted recolonization after eradication. We recommend a close collaboration between island communities, managers, and social scientists from the inception of an eradication campaign to increase the probability of achieving and maintaining an island permanently free of invasive mammals.

  16. Environmental contamination and marine mammals in coastal waters from Argentina: an overview.

    PubMed

    Marcovecchio, J E; Gerpe, M S; Bastida, R O; Rodríguez, D H; Morón, S G

    1994-09-16

    Environmental contamination become an increasing global problem. Different scientific strategies have been developed in order to assess the impact of pollutants on marine ecosystems. The distribution of toxic contaminants in tissues of different marine mammal species--both cetaceans and pinnipeds--has been studied in many ecosystems, as well as several related ecological processes, like pollutant accumulation or transfer through the food web. A research program directed towards evaluating the occurrence of pollutants in marine mammals from the coastal waters of Argentina (southwestern Atlantic Ocean) has been developed since 1985, and includes the study of heavy metal contents in stranded or incidentally caught animals. The marine mammal species studied during this period were: the seals Otaria flavescens and Arctocephalus australis, and small cetaceans Tursiops gephyreus, Pontoporia blainvillei, Kogia breviceps and Ziphius cavirostris. In most of the cases, high contents of heavy metals (total mercury, cadmium, zinc, and copper) have been recorded. Moreover, liver showed the maximum capability for accumulation of heavy metals in all studied species. The biological and ecological characteristics of each species of the above-mentioned marine mammals (feeding habits, age, migratory pathways, or sex) contributed to the understanding of the metal sources. Considering the results as obtained during the study period it can be assumed that: (1) The global distribution of toxic contaminants also affects the southwestern Atlantic Ocean ecosystems, and (2) Marine mammals could be appropriate bioindicator species in order to assess this kind of environmental problem.

  17. Severe mammal declines coincide with proliferation of invasive Burmese pythons in Everglades National Park

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Dorcas, Michael E.; Wilson, John D.; Reed, Robert N.; Snow, Ray W.; Rochford, Michael R.; Miller, Melissa A.; Meshaka, Walter E.; Andreadis, Paul T.; Mazzotti, Frank J.; Romagosa, Christina M.; Hart, Kristen M.

    2012-01-01

    Invasive species represent a significant threat to global biodiversity and a substantial economic burden. Burmese pythons, giant constricting snakes native to Asia, now are found throughout much of southern Florida, including all of Everglades National Park (ENP). Pythons have increased dramatically in both abundance and geographic range since 2000 and consume a wide variety of mammals and birds. Here we report severe apparent declines in mammal populations that coincide temporally and spatially with the proliferation of pythons in ENP. Before 2000, mammals were encountered frequently during nocturnal road surveys within ENP. In contrast, road surveys totaling 56,971 km from 2003–2011 documented a 99.3% decrease in the frequency of raccoon observations, decreases of 98.9% and 87.5% for opossum and bobcat observations, respectively, and failed to detect rabbits. Road surveys also revealed that these species are more common in areas where pythons have been discovered only recently and are most abundant outside the python's current introduced range. These findings suggest that predation by pythons has resulted in dramatic declines in mammals within ENP and that introduced apex predators, such as giant constrictors, can exert significant top-down pressure on prey populations. Severe declines in easily observed and/or common mammals, such as raccoons and bobcats, bode poorly for species of conservation concern, which often are more difficult to sample and occur at lower densities.

  18. Terminal Pleistocene change in mammal communities in southeastern Washington State, USA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lyman, R. Lee

    2014-03-01

    Small mammal communities in western North America experienced declines in taxonomic richness across the late Pleistocene to Holocene transition (PHT), a recent natural global warming event. One community also experienced a decline in evenness and others replaced one species with a congener. Variability in response of small mammal communities to PHT warming is apparent. At the presently arid and xeric Marmes site in the Columbia Basin of southeastern Washington State, megafauna were absent by about 13,000 cal yr BP, evenness of small mammals declined about 11,700 cal yr BP and again about 11,400 cal yr BP whereas richness declined about 11,400 cal BP. Regional faunal turnover was, however, minimal among small-bodied taxa. Local mammal communities are depauperate as a result of megafaunal extinctions and subsequent decreases in small-mammal richness and evenness. The latter chronologically corresponds with a decrease in primary productivity driven by increasing warmth and aridity. More faunas must be studied in order to fully document the range of variability in the responses of mammalian communities to PHT warming. Documentation of patterns in those responses will facilitate understanding and enhance predictive accuracy with respect to responses of mammalian communities to modern global warming.

  19. Small mammal distribution and diversity in a plague endemic area in West Usambara Mountains, Tanzania.

    PubMed

    Ralaizafisoloarivony, Njaka A; Kimaro, Didas N; Kihupi, Nganga I; Mulungu, Loth S; Leirs, Herwig; Msanya, Balthazar M; Deckers, Jozef A; Gulinck, Hubert

    2014-07-01

    Small mammals play a role in plague transmission as hosts in all plague endemic areas. Information on distribution and diversity of small mammals is therefore important for plague surveillance and control in such areas. The objective of this study was to investigate small mammals' diversity and their distribution in plague endemic area in the West Usambara Mountains in north-eastern Tanzania. Landsat images and field surveys were used to select trapping locations in different landscapes. Three landscapes with different habitats were selected for trapping of small mammals. Three types of trap were used in order to maximise the number of species captured. In total, 188 animals and thirteen species were captured in 4,905 trap nights. Praomys delectorum and Mastomys natalensis both reported as plague hosts comprised 50% of all the animals trapped. Trap success increased with altitude. Species diversity was higher in plantation forest followed by shrub, compared to other habitats, regardless of landscape type. It would therefore seem that chances of plague transmission from small mammals to humans are much higher under shrub, natural and plantation forest habitats.

  20. Severe mammal declines coincide with proliferation of invasive Burmese pythons in Everglades National Park

    PubMed Central

    Dorcas, Michael E.; Willson, John D.; Reed, Robert N.; Snow, Ray W.; Rochford, Michael R.; Miller, Melissa A.; Meshaka, Walter E.; Andreadis, Paul T.; Mazzotti, Frank J.; Romagosa, Christina M.; Hart, Kristen M.

    2012-01-01

    Invasive species represent a significant threat to global biodiversity and a substantial economic burden. Burmese pythons, giant constricting snakes native to Asia, now are found throughout much of southern Florida, including all of Everglades National Park (ENP). Pythons have increased dramatically in both abundance and geographic range since 2000 and consume a wide variety of mammals and birds. Here we report severe apparent declines in mammal populations that coincide temporally and spatially with the proliferation of pythons in ENP. Before 2000, mammals were encountered frequently during nocturnal road surveys within ENP. In contrast, road surveys totaling 56,971 km from 2003–2011 documented a 99.3% decrease in the frequency of raccoon observations, decreases of 98.9% and 87.5% for opossum and bobcat observations, respectively, and failed to detect rabbits. Road surveys also revealed that these species are more common in areas where pythons have been discovered only recently and are most abundant outside the python's current introduced range. These findings suggest that predation by pythons has resulted in dramatic declines in mammals within ENP and that introduced apex predators, such as giant constrictors, can exert significant top-down pressure on prey populations. Severe declines in easily observed and/or common mammals, such as raccoons and bobcats, bode poorly for species of conservation concern, which often are more difficult to sample and occur at lower densities. PMID:22308381

  1. Dispersal and diversity in the earliest North American sauropodomorph dinosaurs, with a description of a new taxon.

    PubMed

    Rowe, Timothy B; Sues, Hans-Dieter; Reisz, Robert R

    2011-04-07

    Sauropodomorph dinosaurs originated in the Southern Hemisphere in the Middle or Late Triassic and are commonly portrayed as spreading rapidly to all corners of Pangaea as part of a uniform Late Triassic to Early Jurassic cosmopolitan dinosaur fauna. Under this model, dispersal allegedly inhibited dinosaurian diversification, while vicariance and local extinction enhanced it. However, apomorphy-based analyses of the known fossil record indicate that sauropodomorphs were absent in North America until the Early Jurassic, reframing the temporal context of their arrival. We describe a new taxon from the Kayenta Formation of Arizona that comprises the third diagnosable sauropodomorph from the Early Jurassic of North America. We analysed its relationships to test whether sauropodomorphs reached North America in a single sweepstakes event or in separate dispersals. Our finding of separate arrivals by all three taxa suggests dispersal as a chief factor in dinosaurian diversification during at least the early Mesozoic. It questions whether a 'cosmopolitan' dinosaur fauna ever existed, and corroborates that vicariance, extinction and dispersal did not operate uniformly in time or under uniform conditions during the Mesozoic. Their relative importance is best measured in narrow time slices and circumscribed geographical regions.

  2. Taxon-specific metagenomics of Trichoderma reveals a narrow community of opportunistic species that regulate each other’s development

    PubMed Central

    Friedl, Martina A.

    2012-01-01

    In this paper, we report on the in situ diversity of the mycotrophic fungus Trichoderma (teleomorph Hypocrea, Ascomycota, Dikarya) revealed by a taxon-specific metagenomic approach. We designed a set of genus-specific internal transcribed spacer (ITS)1 and ITS2 rRNA primers and constructed a clone library containing 411 molecular operational taxonomic units (MOTUs). The overall species composition in the soil of the two distinct ecosystems in the Danube floodplain consisted of 15 known species and two potentially novel taxa. The latter taxa accounted for only 1.5 % of all MOTUs, suggesting that almost no hidden or uncultivable Hypocrea/Trichoderma species are present at least in these temperate forest soils. The species were unevenly distributed in vertical soil profiles although no universal factors controlling the distribution of all of them (chemical soil properties, vegetation type and affinity to rhizosphere) were revealed. In vitro experiments simulating infrageneric interactions between the pairs of species that were detected in the same soil horizon showed a broad spectrum of reactions from very strong competition over neutral coexistence to the pronounced synergism. Our data suggest that only a relatively small portion of Hypocrea/Trichoderma species is adapted to soil as a habitat and that the interaction between these species should be considered in a screening for Hypocrea/Trichoderma as an agent(s) of biological control of pests. PMID:22075025

  3. Development, polymorphism, and cross-taxon utility of EST-SSR markers from safflower (Carthamus tinctorius L.).

    PubMed

    Chapman, Mark A; Hvala, John; Strever, Jason; Matvienko, Marta; Kozik, Alexander; Michelmore, Richard W; Tang, Shunxue; Knapp, Steven J; Burke, John M

    2009-12-01

    Due to their highly polymorphic and codominant nature, simple-sequence repeat (SSR) markers are a common choice for assaying genetic diversity and genetic mapping. In this paper, we describe the generation of an expressed-sequence tag (EST) collection for the oilseed crop safflower and the subsequent development of EST-SSR markers for the genetic analysis of safflower and related species. We assembled 40,874 reads into 19,395 unigenes, of which 4,416 (22.8%) contained at least one SSR. Primer pairs were developed and tested for 384 of these loci, resulting in a collection of 104 polymorphic markers that amplify reliably across 27 accessions (3 species) of the genus Carthamus. These markers exhibited a high level of polymorphism, with an average of 6.0 +/- 0.4 alleles per locus and an average gene diversity of 0.54 +/- 0.03 across Carthamus species. In terms of cross-taxon transferability, 50% of these primer pairs produced an amplicon in at least one other species in the Asteraceae, and 28% produced an amplicon in at least one species outside the safflower subfamily (i.e., lettuce, sunflower, and/or Gerbera). These markers represent a valuable resource for the genetic analysis of safflower and related species, and also have the potential to facilitate comparative map-based analyses across a broader array of taxa within the Asteraceae.

  4. Phosphorus Availability, Phytoplankton Community Dynamics, and Taxon-Specific Phosphorus Status in the Gulf of Aqaba, Red Sea

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mackey, K. R.; Labiosa, R. G.; Calhoun, M.; Street, J. H.; Post, A. F.; Paytan, A.

    2006-12-01

    The relationships among phytoplankton taxon-specific phosphorus-status, phytoplankton community composition, and nutrient levels were assessed over three seasons in the Gulf of Aqaba, Red Sea. During summer and fall, stratified surface waters were depleted of nutrients and picophytoplankton populations comprised the majority of cells (80% and 88% respectively). In winter, surface nutrient concentrations were higher and larger phytoplankton were more abundant (63%). Cell specific alkaline phosphatase activity (APA) derived from enzyme labeled fluorescence was consistently low (less than 5%) in the picophytoplankton throughout the year, whereas larger cells expressed elevated APA during the summer and fall but less in the winter. A nutrient addition bioassay during the fall showed that, relative to control, APA was reduced by half in larger cells following addition of orthophosphate, whereas the APA of picophytoplankton remained low (less than 1%) across all treatments and the control. These results indicate that the most abundant phytoplankton are not limited by orthophosphate and only some subpopulations (particularly of larger cells) exhibit orthophosphate-limitation throughout the year. Our results indicate that orthophosphate availability influences phytoplankton ecology, correlating with shifts in phytoplankton community structure and the nutrient status of individual cells. The role of dissolved organic phosphorus as an important phosphorus source for marine phytoplankton in oligotrophic settings and the need for evaluating nutrient limitation at the taxa and/or single cell level (rather than inferring it from nutrient concentrations and ratios or bulk enzyme activity measurements) are highlighted.

  5. Dispersal and diversity in the earliest North American sauropodomorph dinosaurs, with a description of a new taxon

    PubMed Central

    Rowe, Timothy B.; Sues, Hans-Dieter; Reisz, Robert R.

    2011-01-01

    Sauropodomorph dinosaurs originated in the Southern Hemisphere in the Middle or Late Triassic and are commonly portrayed as spreading rapidly to all corners of Pangaea as part of a uniform Late Triassic to Early Jurassic cosmopolitan dinosaur fauna. Under this model, dispersal allegedly inhibited dinosaurian diversification, while vicariance and local extinction enhanced it. However, apomorphy-based analyses of the known fossil record indicate that sauropodomorphs were absent in North America until the Early Jurassic, reframing the temporal context of their arrival. We describe a new taxon from the Kayenta Formation of Arizona that comprises the third diagnosable sauropodomorph from the Early Jurassic of North America. We analysed its relationships to test whether sauropodomorphs reached North America in a single sweepstakes event or in separate dispersals. Our finding of separate arrivals by all three taxa suggests dispersal as a chief factor in dinosaurian diversification during at least the early Mesozoic. It questions whether a ‘cosmopolitan’ dinosaur fauna ever existed, and corroborates that vicariance, extinction and dispersal did not operate uniformly in time or under uniform conditions during the Mesozoic. Their relative importance is best measured in narrow time slices and circumscribed geographical regions. PMID:20926438

  6. Predation, Competition, and Abiotic Disturbance: Population Dynamics of Small Mammals

    SciTech Connect

    Yunger, John A.; /Northern Illinois U. /Northern Illinois U.

    1996-01-01

    Predation and food availability have been implicated in annual non-cyclic fluctuations of vertebrate prey at mid-latitudes. The timing and magnitude of these factors are unclear due to a lack of large-scale field experiments, little attention to interactions, and a failure to closely link vertebrate predators with their prey. From October 1992 to January 1996, small mammal populations were censused on eight 0.6 ha plots at monthly intervals in a 32-ha prairie restoration at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, Illinois. Terrestrial vertebrate predators were excluded after July 1993 from four of the eight plots and canid diets monitored. Both terrestrial and avian vertebrate predators were excluded in March 1994. During 1993 small mammal densities (i.e., Microtus Pennsylvanicus, Peromyscus leucopus, and P. maniculatus) were relatively high. Following peak densities in late summer, Microtus numbers wer 2-3x greater on exclusion plots relative to controls due to preferential selection of Microtus by canids, as reflected in dits. Following an ice-storm and crash in small mammal numbers (particularly Microtus), vertebrate predator exclusion had no detectable effect on P. leucopus numbers, probably due to an abundance of alternative prey (i.e., Sylvilagus floridanus). Meadow vole numbers began to increase in Fall 1995, and a numerical effect of predator exclusion, similar to that in 1993, was observed. Predator exclusion had no detectable effect on the movements and spatial patterns of Microtus during 1993. There was a significant decrease in home range and a significant increase in home range overlap for P. leucopus on the predator exclusion plots. The change in spatial behavior may be due to interspecific competition with Microtus resulting from increased densities on exclusion plots. Thus, predators had an indirect effect on P. leucopus spatial patterns mediated through M. Pennsylvanicus. The role of food limitation was studied using natural and manipulative

  7. New Fossil Evidence on the Sister-Group of Mammals and Early Mesozoic Faunal Distributions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shubin, Neil H.; Crompton, A. W.; Sues, Hans-Dieter; Olsen, Paul E.

    1991-03-01

    Newly discovered remains of highly advanced mammal-like reptiles (Cynodontia: Tritheledontidae) from the Early Jurassic of Nova Scotia, Canada, have revealed that aspects of the characteristic mammalian occlusal pattern are primitive. Mammals and tritheledontids share an homologous pattern of occlusion that is not seen in other cynodonts. The new tritheledontids represent the first definite record of this family from North America. The extreme similarity of North American and African tritheledontids supports the hypothesis that the global distribution of terrestrial tetrapods was homogeneous in the Early Jurassic. This Early Jurassic cosmopolitanism represents the continuation of a trend toward increased global homogeneity among terrestrial tetrapod communities that began in the late Paleozoic.

  8. Mammal mortality at Arizona, California, and Nevada gold mines using cyanide extraction

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Clark, D.R.; Hothem, R.L.

    1991-01-01

    Five-hundred nineteen mammals were reported dead at cyanide-extraction gold mines in Arizona [USA], California, and Nevada from 1984 through 1989. Most numerous were rodents (34.9%) and bats (33.7%); 'bat' was the most often reported category among 24 species or species groups. There are an estimated 160 cyanide-extraction gold mines in these three states, and the number is increasing. Ten mammal species listed as endangered, threatened, rare, protected, or species of special concern are known to have cyanide-extraction gold mines within their geographic ranges.

  9. Mammal madness: is the mammal tree of life not yet resolved?

    PubMed

    Foley, Nicole M; Springer, Mark S; Teeling, Emma C

    2016-07-19

    Most molecular phylogenetic studies place all placental mammals into four superordinal groups, Laurasiatheria (e.g. dogs, bats, whales), Euarchontoglires (e.g. humans, rodents, colugos), Xenarthra (e.g. armadillos, anteaters) and Afrotheria (e.g. elephants, sea cows, tenrecs), and estimate that these clades last shared a common ancestor 90-110 million years ago. This phylogeny has provided a framework for numerous functional and comparative studies. Despite the high level of congruence among most molecular studies, questions still remain regarding the position and divergence time of the root of placental mammals, and certain 'hard nodes' such as the Laurasiatheria polytomy and Paenungulata that seem impossible to resolve. Here, we explore recent consensus and conflict among mammalian phylogenetic studies and explore the reasons for the remaining conflicts. The question of whether the mammal tree of life is or can be ever resolved is also addressed.This article is part of the themed issue 'Dating species divergences using rocks and clocks'.

  10. Endocranial volume is heritable and is associated with longevity and fitness in a wild mammal

    PubMed Central

    Kruuk, L. E. B.; Stanley, R.; Thompson, A. M.; Clutton-Brock, T. H.

    2016-01-01

    Research on relative brain size in mammals suggests that increases in brain size may generate benefits to survival and costs to fecundity: comparative studies of mammals have shown that interspecific differences in relative brain size are positively correlated with longevity and negatively with fecundity. However, as yet, no studies of mammals have investigated whether similar relationships exist within species, nor whether individual differences in brain size within a wild population are heritable. Here we show that, in a wild population of red deer (Cervus elaphus), relative endocranial volume was heritable (h2 = 63%; 95% credible intervals (CI) = 50–76%). In females, it was positively correlated with longevity and lifetime reproductive success, though there was no evidence that it was associated with fecundity. In males, endocranial volume was not related to longevity, lifetime breeding success or fecundity. PMID:28083105

  11. Mammals of Australia's tropical savannas: a conceptual model of assemblage structure and regulatory factors in the Kimberley region.

    PubMed

    Radford, Ian J; Dickman, Christopher R; Start, Antony N; Palmer, Carol; Carnes, Karin; Everitt, Corrin; Fairman, Richard; Graham, Gordon; Partridge, Thalie; Thomson, Allan

    2014-01-01

    We construct a state-and-transition model for mammals in tropical savannas in northern Australia to synthesize ecological knowledge and understand mammalian declines. We aimed to validate the existence of alternative mammal assemblage states similar to those in arid Australian grasslands, and to speculate on transition triggers. Based on the arid grassland model, we hypothesized that assemblages are partitioned across rainfall gradients and between substrates. We also predicted that assemblages typical of arid regions in boom periods would be prevalent in savannas with higher and more regular rainfall. Data from eight mammal surveys from the Kimberley region, Western Australia (1994 to 2011) were collated. Survey sites were partitioned across rainfall zones and habitats. Data allowed us to identify three assemblage states: State 0:--low numbers of mammals, State II:--dominated by omnivorous rodents and State III:--dominated by rodents and larger marsupials. Unlike arid grasslands, assemblage dominance by insectivorous dasyurids (State I) did not occur in savannas. Mammal assemblages were partitioned across rainfall zones and between substrates as predicted, but-unlike arid regions-were not related strongly to yearly rainfall. Mammal assemblage composition showed high regional stability, probably related to high annual rainfall and predictable wet season resource pulses. As a consequence, we speculate that perpetually booming assemblages in savannas allow top-down control of the ecosystem, with suppression of introduced cats by the dingo, the region's top predator. Under conditions of low or erratic productivity, imposed increasingly by intense fire regimes and introduced herbivore grazing, dingoes may not limit impacts of cats on native mammals. These interacting factors may explain contemporary declines of savanna mammals as well as historical declines in arid Australia. The cat-ecosystem productivity hypothesis raised here differs from the already-articulated cat

  12. Mammals of Australia's Tropical Savannas: A Conceptual Model of Assemblage Structure and Regulatory Factors in the Kimberley Region

    PubMed Central

    Radford, Ian J.; Dickman, Christopher R.; Start, Antony N.; Palmer, Carol; Carnes, Karin; Everitt, Corrin; Fairman, Richard; Graham, Gordon; Partridge, Thalie; Thomson, Allan

    2014-01-01

    We construct a state-and-transition model for mammals in tropical savannas in northern Australia to synthesize ecological knowledge and understand mammalian declines. We aimed to validate the existence of alternative mammal assemblage states similar to those in arid Australian grasslands, and to speculate on transition triggers. Based on the arid grassland model, we hypothesized that assemblages are partitioned across rainfall gradients and between substrates. We also predicted that assemblages typical of arid regions in boom periods would be prevalent in savannas with higher and more regular rainfall. Data from eight mammal surveys from the Kimberley region, Western Australia (1994 to 2011) were collated. Survey sites were partitioned across rainfall zones and habitats. Data allowed us to identify three assemblage states: State 0:- low numbers of mammals, State II:- dominated by omnivorous rodents and State III:- dominated by rodents and larger marsupials. Unlike arid grasslands, assemblage dominance by insectivorous dasyurids (State I) did not occur in savannas. Mammal assemblages were partitioned across rainfall zones and between substrates as predicted, but—unlike arid regions—were not related strongly to yearly rainfall. Mammal assemblage composition showed high regional stability, probably related to high annual rainfall and predictable wet season resource pulses. As a consequence, we speculate that perpetually booming assemblages in savannas allow top-down control of the ecosystem, with suppression of introduced cats by the dingo, the region's top predator. Under conditions of low or erratic productivity, imposed increasingly by intense fire regimes and introduced herbivore grazing, dingoes may not limit impacts of cats on native mammals. These interacting factors may explain contemporary declines of savanna mammals as well as historical declines in arid Australia. The cat-ecosystem productivity hypothesis raised here differs from the already

  13. Conservation of Arctic marine mammals faced with climate change.

    PubMed

    Ragen, Timothy J; Huntington, Henry P; Hovelsrud, Grete K

    2008-03-01

    On a daily basis, societies are making decisions that will influence the effects of climate change for decades or even centuries to come. To promote informed management of the associated risks, we review available conservation measures for Arctic marine mammals, a group that includes some of the most charismatic species on earth. The majority of available conservation measures (e.g., restrictions on hunting, protection of essential habitat areas from development, reduction of incidental take) are intended to address the effects of increasing human activity in the Arctic that are likely to follow decreasing sea ice and rising temperatures. As important as those measures will be in the effort to conserve Arctic marine mammals and ecosystems, they will not address the primary physical manifestations of climate change, such as loss of sea ice. Short of actions to prevent climate change, there are no known conservation measures that can be used to ensure the long-term persistence of these species and ecosystems as we know them today.

  14. Absence of mammals and the evolution of New Zealand grasses.

    PubMed

    Antonelli, Alexandre; Humphreys, Aelys M; Lee, William G; Linder, H Peter

    2011-03-07

    Anthropogenic alteration of biotic distributions and disturbance regimes has dramatically changed the evolutionary context for the differentiation of species traits. Some of the most striking examples in recent centuries have been on islands where flightless birds, which evolved in the absence of mammalian carnivores, have been decimated following the widespread introduction of exotic predators. Until now, no equivalent case has been reported for plants. Here, we make use of robust analytical tools and an exceptionally well-sampled molecular phylogeny to show that a majority of New Zealand danthonioid grasses (Poaceae) may have adapted to the relaxed vertebrate herbivore pressure during the late Cenozoic through the development of a distinctive and unusual habit: abscission of old leaves. This feature occurs in only about 3 per cent of the world's roughly 11,000 grass species and has been empirically shown to increase plant productivity but to reduce protection against mammal grazing. This result suggests that release from a selective pressure can lead to species radiations. This seemingly anachronistic adaptation may represent an overlooked factor contributing to the severe decline in the geographical extent and species diversity of New Zealand's indigenous grasslands following the introduction of herbivorous terrestrial mammals in the 19th century.

  15. Major Patterns in the History of Carnivorous Mammals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Van Valkenburgh, Blaire

    The history of carnivorous mammals is characterized by a series of rise-and-fall patterns of diversification in which declining clades are replaced by phylogenetically distinct but functionally similar clades. Seven such examples from the last 46 million years are described for North America and Eurasia. In three of the seven turnover events, competition with replacement taxa may have driven the decline of formerly dominant taxa. In the remaining four this is less likely because inferred functional similarity was minimal during the interval of temporal overlap between clades. However, competition still may have been important in producing the rise-and-fall pattern through suppression of evolution within replacement taxa; as long as the large carnivore ecospace was filled, the radiation of new taxa into that ecospace was limited, only occurring after the extinction of the incumbents. The apparently inevitable decline of incumbent taxa may reflect the tendency for clades of large carnivorous mammals to produce more specialized species as they mature, leading to increased vulnerability to extinction when environments change.

  16. Scale Effects between Body Size and Limb Design in Quadrupedal Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Kilbourne, Brandon M.; Hoffman, Louwrens C.

    2013-01-01

    Recently the metabolic cost of swinging the limbs has been found to be much greater than previously thought, raising the possibility that limb rotational inertia influences the energetics of locomotion. Larger mammals have a lower mass-specific cost of transport than smaller mammals. The scaling of the mass-specific cost of transport is partly explained by decreasing stride frequency with increasing body size; however, it is unknown if limb rotational inertia also influences the mass-specific cost of transport. Limb length and inertial properties – limb mass, center of mass (COM) position, moment of inertia, radius of gyration, and natural frequency – were measured in 44 species of terrestrial mammals, spanning eight taxonomic orders. Limb length increases disproportionately with body mass via positive allometry (length ∝ body mass0.40); the positive allometry of limb length may help explain the scaling of the metabolic cost of transport. When scaled against body mass, forelimb inertial properties, apart from mass, scale with positive allometry. Fore- and hindlimb mass scale according to geometric similarity (limb mass ∝ body mass1.0), as do the remaining hindlimb inertial properties. The positive allometry of limb length is largely the result of absolute differences in limb inertial properties between mammalian subgroups. Though likely detrimental to locomotor costs in large mammals, scale effects in limb inertial properties appear to be concomitant with scale effects in sensorimotor control and locomotor ability in terrestrial mammals. Across mammals, the forelimb's potential for angular acceleration scales according to geometric similarity, whereas the hindlimb's potential for angular acceleration scales with positive allometry. PMID:24260117

  17. Scale effects between body size and limb design in quadrupedal mammals.

    PubMed

    Kilbourne, Brandon M; Hoffman, Louwrens C

    2013-01-01

    Recently the metabolic cost of swinging the limbs has been found to be much greater than previously thought, raising the possibility that limb rotational inertia influences the energetics of locomotion. Larger mammals have a lower mass-specific cost of transport than smaller mammals. The scaling of the mass-specific cost of transport is partly explained by decreasing stride frequency with increasing body size; however, it is unknown if limb rotational inertia also influences the mass-specific cost of transport. Limb length and inertial properties--limb mass, center of mass (COM) position, moment of inertia, radius of gyration, and natural frequency--were measured in 44 species of terrestrial mammals, spanning eight taxonomic orders. Limb length increases disproportionately with body mass via positive allometry (length ∝ body mass(0.40)); the positive allometry of limb length may help explain the scaling of the metabolic cost of transport. When scaled against body mass, forelimb inertial properties, apart from mass, scale with positive allometry. Fore- and hindlimb mass scale according to geometric similarity (limb mass ∝ body mass(1.0)), as do the remaining hindlimb inertial properties. The positive allometry of limb length is largely the result of absolute differences in limb inertial properties between mammalian subgroups. Though likely detrimental to locomotor costs in large mammals, scale effects in limb inertial properties appear to be concomitant with scale effects in sensorimotor control and locomotor ability in terrestrial mammals. Across mammals, the forelimb's potential for angular acceleration scales according to geometric similarity, whereas the hindlimb's potential for angular acceleration scales with positive allometry.

  18. Radiobiological effects of heavy ions and protons. [on cells of mammals, bacteria and viruses

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ryzhov, N. I.; Vorozhtsova, S. V.; Krasavin, Y. A.; Mashinskaya, T. Y.; Savchenko, N. Y.; Fedorov, B. S.; Khlaponina, V. F.; Shelegedin, V. N.; Gut, L.; Sabo, L.

    1974-01-01

    Radiobiological effects of heavy ions and protons are studied on cells of mammals, bacteria, viruses and DNA of bacteria. Results show that the dose effect dependence bears an exponential character; the reduction of RBE as LET of particle increases reflects the different character of microdistribution of absorbed energy in biological objects with different levels of biological organization.

  19. Regional variability in food availability for Arctic marine mammals.

    PubMed

    Bluhm, Bodil A; Gradinger, Rolf

    2008-03-01

    This review provides an overview of prey preferences of seven core Arctic marine mammal species (AMM) and four non-core species on a pan-Arctic scale with regional examples. Arctic marine mammal species exploit prey resources close to the sea ice, in the water column, and at the sea floor, including lipid-rich pelagic and benthic crustaceans and pelagic and ice-associated schooling fishes such as capelin and Arctic cod. Prey preferred by individual species range from cephalopods and benthic bivalves to Greenland halibut. A few AMM are very prey-, habitat-, and/or depth-specific (e.g., walrus, polar bear), while others are rather opportunistic and, therefore, likely less vulnerable to change (e.g., beluga, bearded seal). In the second section, we review prey distribution patterns and current biomass hotspots in the three major physical realms (sea ice, water column, and seafloor), highlighting relations to environmental parameters such as advection patterns and the sea ice regime. The third part of the contribution presents examples of documented changes in AMM prey distribution and biomass and, subsequently, suggests three potential scenarios of large-scale biotic change, based on published observations and predictions of environmental change. These scenarios discuss (1) increased pelagic primary and, hence, secondary production, particularly in the central Arctic, during open-water conditions in the summer (based on surplus nutrients currently unutilized); (2) reduced benthic and pelagic biomass in coastal/shelf areas (due to increased river runoff and, hence, changed salinity and turbidity conditions); and (3) increased pelagic grazing and recycling in open-water conditions at the expense of the current tight benthic-pelagic coupling in part of the ice-covered shelf regions (due to increased pelagic consumption vs. vertical flux). Should those scenarios hold true, pelagic-feeding and generalist AMM might be advantaged, while the range for benthic shelf

  20. Brain size is correlated with endangerment status in mammals

    PubMed Central

    Abelson, Eric S.

    2016-01-01

    Increases in relative encephalization (RE), brain size after controlling for body size, comes at a great metabolic cost and is correlated with a host of cognitive traits, from the ability to count objects to higher rates of innovation. Despite many studies examining the implications and trade-offs accompanying increased RE, the relationship between mammalian extinction risk and RE is unknown. I examine whether mammals with larger levels of RE are more or less likely to be at risk of endangerment than less-encephalized species. I find that extant species with large levels of encephalization are at greater risk of endangerment, with this effect being strongest in species with small body sizes. These results suggest that RE could be a valuable asset in estimating extinction vulnerability. Additionally, these findings suggest that the cost–benefit trade-off of RE is different in large-bodied species when compared with small-bodied species. PMID:26888034

  1. Brain size is correlated with endangerment status in mammals.

    PubMed

    Abelson, Eric S

    2016-02-24

    Increases in relative encephalization (RE), brain size after controlling for body size, comes at a great metabolic cost and is correlated with a host of cognitive traits, from the ability to count objects to higher rates of innovation. Despite many studies examining the implications and trade-offs accompanying increased RE, the relationship between mammalian extinction risk and RE is unknown. I examine whether mammals with larger levels of RE are more or less likely to be at risk of endangerment than less-encephalized species. I find that extant species with large levels of encephalization are at greater risk of endangerment, with this effect being strongest in species with small body sizes. These results suggest that RE could be a valuable asset in estimating extinction vulnerability. Additionally, these findings suggest that the cost-benefit trade-off of RE is different in large-bodied species when compared with small-bodied species.

  2. Hybridization increases invasive knotweed success

    PubMed Central

    Parepa, Madalin; Fischer, Markus; Krebs, Christine; Bossdorf, Oliver

    2014-01-01

    Hybridization is one of the fundamental mechanisms by which rapid evolution can occur in exotic species. If hybrids show increased vigour, this could significantly contribute to invasion success. Here, we compared the success of the two invasive knotweeds, Fallopia japonica and F. sachalinensis, and their hybrid, F. × bohemica, in competing against experimental communities of native plants. Using plant material from multiple clones of each taxon collected across a latitudinal gradient in Central Europe, we found that knotweed hybrids performed significantly better in competition with a native community and that they more strongly reduced the growth of the native plants. One of the parental species, F. sachalinensis, regenerated significantly less well from rhizomes, and this difference disappeared if activated carbon was added to the substrate, which suggests allelopathic inhibition of F. sachalinensis regeneration by native plants. We found substantial within-taxon variation in competitive success in all knotweed taxa, but variation was generally greatest in the hybrid. Interestingly, there was also significant variation within the genetically uniform F. japonica, possibly reflecting epigenetic differences. Our study shows that invasive knotweed hybrids are indeed more competitive than their parents and that hybridization increased the invasiveness of the exotic knotweed complex. PMID:24665343

  3. Trypanosomes of Australian mammals: A review.

    PubMed

    Thompson, Craig K; Godfrey, Stephanie S; Thompson, R C Andrew

    2014-08-01

    Approximately 306 species of terrestrial and arboreal mammals are known to have inhabited the mainland and coastal islands of Australia at the time of European settlement in 1788. The exotic Trypanosoma lewisi was the first mammalian trypanosome identified in Australia in 1888, while the first native species, Trypanosoma pteropi, was taxonomically described in 1913. Since these discoveries, about 22% of the indigenous mammalian fauna have been examined during the surveillance of trypanosome biodiversity in Australia, including 46 species of marsupials, 9 rodents, 9 bats and both monotremes. Of those mammals examined, trypanosomes have been identified from 28 host species, with eight native species of Trypanosoma taxonomically described. These native trypanosomes include T. pteropi, Trypanosoma thylacis, Trypanosoma hipposideri, Trypanosoma binneyi, Trypanosoma irwini, Trypanosoma copemani, Trypanosoma gilletti and Trypanosoma vegrandis. Exotic trypanosomes have also been identified from the introduced mammalian fauna of Australia, and include T. lewisi, Trypanosoma melophagium, Trypanosoma theileri, Trypanosoma nabiasi and Trypanosoma evansi. Fortunately, T. evansi was eradicated soon after its introduction and did not establish in Australia. Of these exotic trypanosomes, T. lewisi is the sole representative that has been reported from indigenous Australian mammals; morphological forms were recorded from two indigenous species of rodents (Hydromys chrysogaster and Rattus fuscipes). Numerous Australian marsupial species are potentially at risk from the native T. copemani, which may be chronically pathogenic, while marsupials, rodents and monotremes appear at risk from exotic species, including T. lewisi, Trypanosoma cruzi and T. evansi. This comprehensive review of trypanosome biodiversity in Australia highlights the negative impact of these parasites upon their mammalian hosts, as well as the threatening biosecurity concerns.

  4. Trypanosomes of Australian mammals: A review

    PubMed Central

    Thompson, Craig K.; Godfrey, Stephanie S.; Thompson, R.C. Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Approximately 306 species of terrestrial and arboreal mammals are known to have inhabited the mainland and coastal islands of Australia at the time of European settlement in 1788. The exotic Trypanosoma lewisi was the first mammalian trypanosome identified in Australia in 1888, while the first native species, Trypanosoma pteropi, was taxonomically described in 1913. Since these discoveries, about 22% of the indigenous mammalian fauna have been examined during the surveillance of trypanosome biodiversity in Australia, including 46 species of marsupials, 9 rodents, 9 bats and both monotremes. Of those mammals examined, trypanosomes have been identified from 28 host species, with eight native species of Trypanosoma taxonomically described. These native trypanosomes include T. pteropi, Trypanosoma thylacis, Trypanosoma hipposideri, Trypanosoma binneyi, Trypanosoma irwini, Trypanosoma copemani, Trypanosoma gilletti and Trypanosoma vegrandis. Exotic trypanosomes have also been identified from the introduced mammalian fauna of Australia, and include T. lewisi, Trypanosoma melophagium, Trypanosoma theileri, Trypanosoma nabiasi and Trypanosoma evansi. Fortunately, T. evansi was eradicated soon after its introduction and did not establish in Australia. Of these exotic trypanosomes, T. lewisi is the sole representative that has been reported from indigenous Australian mammals; morphological forms were recorded from two indigenous species of rodents (Hydromys chrysogaster and Rattus fuscipes). Numerous Australian marsupial species are potentially at risk from the native T. copemani, which may be chronically pathogenic, while marsupials, rodents and monotremes appear at risk from exotic species, including T. lewisi, Trypanosoma cruzi and T. evansi. This comprehensive review of trypanosome biodiversity in Australia highlights the negative impact of these parasites upon their mammalian hosts, as well as the threatening biosecurity concerns. PMID:25161902

  5. Small mammal training in the veterinary practice.

    PubMed

    Brown, Susan A

    2012-09-01

    Exotic small mammal patients can experience a great deal of anxiety and fear during a visit to a veterinary practice. The stressful experience may continue at the client's home during medication routines. The experience is at times so stressful to the animal that it damages the relationship of trust with its caregiver. This outcome can be changed through the thoughtful use of desensitization, counterconditioning, environmental management and positive reinforcement training of health care behaviors both in the veterinary practice and in the animal's home. Together the veterinarian and the client can create a low stress experience.

  6. Immunodiagnostic Approaches to Diseases in Marine Mammals

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1987-09-01

    and guinea pigs, and used to develop the single radial immunodiffusion (RID) immunoblot, and ELISA techniques. The base-line level of IgG and 1gM in...mammals. The IgG and IgM of cetaceans and pinnipeds were isolated, antisera produced in rabbits and guinea pigs, and used to develop the single radial ... immunodiffusion (RID) immunoblot, and ELISA techniques. The base-line level of IgG and IgM in the bottlenose dolphin (Tursiops truncatus), the sea

  7. Viruses and virus diseases of marine mammals.

    PubMed

    Smith, A W; Skilling, D E

    1979-11-01

    Poxvirus and several serotypes of calicivirus cause recognizable disease in marine mammals. Pox lesions in pinnipeds are raised and proliferative and are seen most frequently after confinement in captivity. In cetaceans, a poxvirus is associated with a much more benign and chronic lesion called a "tattoo." Numerous caliciviruses of differing antigenic types have been isolated from vesicular lesions and aborted fetuses of northern fur seals and California sea lions as well as from clinically normal and orphaned northern elephant seal pups. An adenovirus has been isolated from a sei whale and an enterovirus has been isolated from a gray whale.

  8. [Problems of disposal of dead marine mammals].

    PubMed

    Stede, M

    1997-07-01

    Feasibilities and limits to dispose stranded large whales and the risk of the staff during the salvage and dissection of these animals are described here. The influence on the environment by leaving large marine mammals in the place of stranding are exemplary discussed in connection with the accumulation of toxins of Clostridium botulinum in the food chain as a source of danger for water fowls of the coastal region. Therefore carcasses of whales must be removed from the shore after their stranding. Under special circumstances the carcasses could be lowered into a dune.

  9. Does leptin signal adiposity in the egg-laying mammal, Tachyglossus aculeatus?

    PubMed

    Sprent, Jenny; Jones, Susan M; Nicol, Stewart C

    2012-09-01

    Leptin is a peptide hormone best known for its role in feedback regulation of adiposity in eutherian mammals. Normally an increase in adipose tissue mass leads to an increase in circulating leptin which increases energy expenditure and limits food intake, but in hibernating eutherian mammals this relationship may change to allow prehibernatory fattening. The echidna (Tachyglossus aculeatus) is a monotreme mammal which accumulates significant fat reserves before entering hibernation, and mates immediately at the end of hibernation. We hypothesised that echidnas would show a strong relationship between body mass and plasma leptin for most of the year which would change during the pre-hibernatory period. We measured plasma leptin and body mass in free-ranging echidnas over several reproductive and hibernation cycles. There were significant seasonal variations in plasma leptin in both sexes, with the highest levels occurring in hibernation and in mating females. The lowest levels were found in males when they were foraging maximally after the reproductive period. We used mass%, body mass at the time of sampling as a percentage of long term mean mass, as a proxy for adiposity. There was a weak negative relationship between mass% and plasma leptin, from which we infer a weak negative relationship between adiposity and plasma leptin as has been found in reptiles and birds, rather than the strong positive relationship found in other mammals.

  10. Toward a Tree-of-Life for the boas and pythons: multilocus species-level phylogeny with unprecedented taxon sampling.

    PubMed

    Graham Reynolds, R; Niemiller, Matthew L; Revell, Liam J

    2014-02-01

    Snakes in the families Boidae and Pythonidae constitute some of the most spectacular reptiles and comprise an enormous diversity of morphology, behavior, and ecology. While many species of boas and pythons are familiar, taxonomy and evolutionary relationships within these families remain contentious and fluid. A major effort in evolutionary and conservation biology is to assemble a comprehensive Tree-of-Life, or a macro-scale phylogenetic hypothesis, for all known life on Earth. No previously published study has produced a species-level molecular phylogeny for more than 61% of boa species or 65% of python species. Using both novel and previously published sequence data, we have produced a species-level phylogeny for 84.5% of boid species and 82.5% of pythonid species, contextualized within a larger phylogeny of henophidian snakes. We obtained new sequence data for three boid, one pythonid, and two tropidophiid taxa which have never previously been included in a molecular study, in addition to generating novel sequences for seven genes across an additional 12 taxa. We compiled an 11-gene dataset for 127 taxa, consisting of the mitochondrial genes CYTB, 12S, and 16S, and the nuclear genes bdnf, bmp2, c-mos, gpr35, rag1, ntf3, odc, and slc30a1, totaling up to 7561 base pairs per taxon. We analyzed this dataset using both maximum likelihood and Bayesian inference and recovered a well-supported phylogeny for these species. We found significant evidence of discordance between taxonomy and evolutionary relationships in the genera Tropidophis, Morelia, Liasis, and Leiopython, and we found support for elevating two previously suggested boid species. We suggest a revised taxonomy for the boas (13 genera, 58 species) and pythons (8 genera, 40 species), review relationships between our study and the many other molecular phylogenetic studies of henophidian snakes, and present a taxonomic database and alignment which may be easily used and built upon by other researchers.

  11. Blobology: exploring raw genome data for contaminants, symbionts and parasites using taxon-annotated GC-coverage plots

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Sujai; Jones, Martin; Koutsovoulos, Georgios; Clarke, Michael; Blaxter, Mark

    2013-01-01

    Generating the raw data for a de novo genome assembly project for a target eukaryotic species is relatively easy. This democratization of access to large-scale data has allowed many research teams to plan to assemble the genomes of non-model organisms. These new genome targets are very different from the traditional, inbred, laboratory-reared model organisms. They are often small, and cannot be isolated free of their environment – whether ingested food, the surrounding host organism of parasites, or commensal and symbiotic organisms attached to or within the individuals sampled. Preparation of pure DNA originating from a single species can be technically impossible, but assembly of mixed-organism DNA can be difficult, as most genome assemblers perform poorly when faced with multiple genomes in different stoichiometries. This class of problem is common in metagenomic datasets that deliberately try to capture all the genomes present in an environment, but replicon assembly is not often the goal of such programs. Here we present an approach to extracting, from mixed DNA sequence data, subsets that correspond to single species’ genomes and thus improving genome assembly. We use both numerical (proportion of GC bases and read coverage) and biological (best-matching sequence in annotated databases) indicators to aid partitioning of draft assembly contigs, and the reads that contribute to those contigs, into distinct bins that can then be subjected to rigorous, optimized assembly, through the use of taxon-annotated GC-coverage plots (TAGC plots). We also present Blobsplorer, a tool that aids exploration and selection of subsets from TAGC-annotated data. Partitioning the data in this way can rescue poorly assembled genomes, and reveal unexpected symbionts and commensals in eukaryotic genome projects. The TAGC plot pipeline script is available from https://github.com/blaxterlab/blobology, and the Blobsplorer tool from https://github.com/mojones/Blobsplorer. PMID

  12. 75 FR 5045 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-02-01

    ... of detecting differences in temperature from thermal energy (heat) radiated from living bodies or... combination with remotely sensed habitat parameters (i.e., sea surface temperature and chlorophyll), these... DPI to marine mammals is considered highly unlikely. Therefore, the risk of injury or mortality is...

  13. 76 FR 3092 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals: Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy's Mission...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-01-19

    ... Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy's Mission Activities at the Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City... Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division (NSWC PCD) to the Commander, U.S. Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division, 110 Vernon Avenue, Panama City, FL 32407-7001 and persons...

  14. 76 FR 4093 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-01-24

    ... Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Exploration Drilling Programs in the Chukchi and.... (Shell) incidental to offshore exploration drilling on Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) leases in the... IHAs were not issued, and Shell did not conduct the proposed exploration drilling programs in...

  15. 78 FR 24731 - Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to an...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-04-26

    ... Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to an Exploration Drilling Program in the Chukchi Sea... drilling on Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) leases in the Chukchi Sea, Alaska, during the 2014 open-water... exploration drilling in the Chukchi Sea during the 2014 open- ] water season. NMFS published a Notice...

  16. 75 FR 12734 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Operation of Offshore...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-03-17

    ... repair and maintenance; and emergency and oil spill response training. Sections 1 and 2 of BP's... occurrence of oil spills. Petroleum development and associated activities in marine waters introduce sound... NMFS, BP requests authorization to take marine mammals incidental to operation of offshore oil and...

  17. 77 FR 46733 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals: Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Training Exercises...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-08-06

    ... incidental to mine neutralization training using Time Delay Firing Devices (TDFDs) within the MIRC, along...). The potential effects of mine neutralization training on marine mammals were comprehensively analyzed in the final regulations for this Range Complex and mine neutralization training has been included...

  18. 75 FR 41440 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-07-16

    ... vessels will cease any movement in the area if a marine mammal other than a right whale is sighted within... cease any movement in the construction area if a right whale is sighted within or approaching to a... movement. (D) The material barges and tugs used for repair work shall transit from the operations dock...

  19. 76 FR 43267 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental To...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-07-20

    ... by causing disruption of natural behavioral patterns, including, but not limited to, migration... optical and electronic sensors are also employed for target clearance. If any marine mammals are detected... sensors (IR), and visual means. An alternative area would be selected if any cetaceans or vessels...

  20. 78 FR 25703 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Fisheries Research

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-05-02

    ... (off the U.S. west coast), the Eastern Tropical Pacific Research Area, and the Antarctic Research Area (in the Antarctic Scotia Sea). It is possible that marine mammals may interact with fishing gear (e.g... and treaties related to the management of living marine resources in international waters outside...

  1. 75 FR 34428 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals: Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Training Exercises...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-06-17

    ... explosives. Summary of Activity under the 2009 LOA As described in the Navy's exercise reports, in 2009, the... Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Training Exercises in Three East Coast Range Complexes AGENCY: National... the U.S. Navy's training activities within the Navy's Virginia Capes (VACAPES), Jacksonville...

  2. 76 FR 33266 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals: Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Training Exercises...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-06-08

    ... exercise reports for VACAPES, JAX, and CHPT Range Complexes, in 2010, the training activities conducted by... detailed description of the Navy's 2010 training activities can be found in the exercise reports posted on... Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy Training Exercises in Three East Coast Range Complexes AGENCY:...

  3. 76 FR 43639 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-07-21

    ... Liquefied Natural Gas Port Facility in Massachusetts Bay AGENCY: National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS... take marine mammals, by harassment, incidental to operating a liquefied natural gas (LNG) port facility... diameter natural gas pipeline which interconnects the Port to an offshore natural gas pipeline known as...

  4. 78 FR 22095 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Replacement of the...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-04-12

    ... marine mammals because sound levels would not reach NMFS threshold criteria underwater and there are no... reduce sound levels by up to 10 decibels (dB). The concrete pilings installed landward of the temporary... Puget Sound. The inner bay receives fresh water from the Duwamish River and most of the...

  5. 77 FR 51773 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-08-27

    ... retinal injury. Biosonics Up to three Bird-Guard broadcasting units (bird distress calls) could be used to... distress and predator calls could be used. The bird calls are naturally occurring sounds and are not... Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Bird Mitigation Research in the Farallon...

  6. 78 FR 35851 - Takes of Marine Mammals Incidental to Specified Activities; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-06-14

    ... Sources The acoustic sources of primary concern are the airguns that will be deployed from the seismic... on Marine Mammals Operating active acoustic sources such as airgun arrays, navigational sonars, and... desirable acoustic environment; and Cease feeding or social interaction. For example, at the Guerreo...

  7. 75 FR 28587 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Missile Launch...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-05-21

    .... The launch azimuths caused the vehicles to pass over or near various pinniped monitoring and acoustic measurement sites where Autonomous Terrestrial Acoustic Recorders (ATARs) and video systems had been deployed... operations from SNI on marine mammals involve both acoustic and non-acoustic effects. Acoustic effects...

  8. 76 FR 39705 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Operation of Offshore...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2011-07-06

    ... continuing operations at Northstar on marine mammals involve both non-acoustic and acoustic effects. Potential non-acoustic effects could result from the physical presence of personnel, structures and... production activities at Northstar, sounds and non-acoustic stimuli will be generated by vehicle...

  9. 77 FR 9628 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals: Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Navy's Mission...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-02-17

    ... sea turtle species during pre-test, during-test, and post-test monitoring for both sonar events. No stranded or injured marine mammals or sea turtles were observed during either aerial monitoring effort... Atlantic spotted dolphins; and seven groups of unidentified dolphins. The second monitoring event...

  10. 77 FR 23463 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Space Vehicle and...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-04-19

    ... Marine Mammals Incidental to Space Vehicle and Missile Launch Operations at Kodiak Launch Complex, Alaska... two species of pinnipeds incidental to space vehicle and missile launch operations at the Kodiak... vitulina) (adults by harassment and pups by injury or mortality), incidental to space vehicle and...

  11. 78 FR 43861 - Taking and Importing Marine Mammals; Taking Marine Mammals Incidental to Space Vehicle and...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2013-07-22

    ...-range ballistic target missiles, and other smaller missile systems at the KLC. The AAC has complied with... Marine Mammals Incidental to Space Vehicle and Missile Launch Operations at Kodiak Launch Complex, Alaska... two species of pinnipeds incidental to space vehicle and missile launch operations at the...

  12. Behavioral Ecology of Captive Species: Using Bibliographic Information to Assess Pet Suitability of Mammal Species

    PubMed Central

    Koene, Paul; de Mol, Rudi M.; Ipema, Bert

    2016-01-01

    Which mammal species are suitable to be kept as pet? For answering this question many factors have to be considered. Animals have many adaptations to their natural environment in which they have evolved that may cause adaptation problems and/or risks in captivity. Problems may be visible in behavior, welfare, health, and/or human–animal interaction, resulting, for example, in stereotypies, disease, and fear. A framework is developed in which bibliographic information of mammal species from the wild and captive environment is collected and assessed by three teams of animal scientists. Oneliners from literature about behavioral ecology, health, and welfare and human–animal relationship of 90 mammal species are collected by team 1 in a database and strength of behavioral needs and risks is assessed by team 2. Based on summaries of those strengths the suitability of the mammal species is assessed by team 3. Involvement of stakeholders for supplying bibliographic information and assessments was propagated. Combining the individual and subjective assessments of the scientists using statistical methods makes the final assessment of a rank order of suitability as pet of those species less biased and more objective. The framework is dynamic and produces an initial rank ordered list of the pet suitability of 90 mammal species, methods to add new mammal species to the list or remove animals from the list and a method to incorporate stakeholder assessments. A model is developed that allows for provisional classification of pet suitability. Periodical update of the pet suitability framework is expected to produce an updated list with increased reliability and accuracy. Furthermore, the framework could be further developed to assess the pet suitability of additional species of other animal groups, e.g., birds, reptiles, and amphibians. PMID:27243023

  13. Small mammal tooth enamel carbon isotope record of C4 grasses in late Neogene China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arppe, Laura; Kaakinen, Anu; Passey, Benjamin H.; Zhang, Zhaoqun; Fortelius, Mikael

    2015-10-01

    The spatiotemporal pattern of the late Cenozoic spread of C4 vegetation is an important indicator of environmental change that is intertwined with the uplift of the Himalaya and Tibetan Plateau, and the development of the East Asian monsoons. To explore the spread of C4 vegetation in China and shed new light on regional climatic evolution, we measured δ13C values of more than 200 small mammal teeth (primarily rodents and lagomorphs) using a laser ablation isotope ratio mass spectrometry approach. Small mammals are highly sensitive indicators of their environment because they have limited spatial ranges and because they have minimal time-averaging of carbon isotope signatures of dietary components. The specimens originate from four classic Late Miocene fossil localities, Lufeng, Yuanmou, Lingtai, and Ertemte, along a southwest-northeast transect from Yunnan Province to Inner Mongolia. In Yunnan (Lufeng, Yuanmou) and on the Loess Plateau (Lingtai), the small mammal δ13C values record nearly pure C3 ecosystems, and mixed but C3-based ecosystems, respectively, in agreement with previous studies based on carbon isotopes of large herbivores and soil carbonates. In Inner Mongolia, the micromammalian tooth enamel δ13C record picks up the presence of C4 vegetation where large mammal samples do not, indicating a mixed yet C3-dominated ecosystem at ~ 6 Ma. As a whole, the results support a scenario of northward increasing C4 grass abundance in a pattern that mirrors northward decreasing precipitation of the summer monsoon system. The results highlight differences between large and small mammals as indicators of C4 vegetation in ancient ecosystems, particularly the ability of small mammal δ13C values to detect the presence of minor components of the vegetation structure.

  14. Spatial and temporal exposure patterns in non-target small mammals during brodifacoum rat control.

    PubMed

    Geduhn, Anke; Esther, Alexandra; Schenke, Detlef; Mattes, Hermann; Jacob, Jens

    2014-10-15

    Worldwide pest rodents on livestock farms are often regulated using anticoagulant rodenticides (ARs). Second generation ARs in particular can cause poisoning in non-target species due to their high toxicity and persistence. However, research on exposure of small mammals is rare. We systematically investigated spatial and temporal exposure patterns of non-target small mammals in a large-scale replicated study. Small mammals were trapped at different distances to bait stations on ten farms before, during and after brodifacoum (BR) bait application, and liver samples of 1178 non-target small mammals were analyzed for residues of eight ARs using liquid chromatography coupled with tandem mass spectrometry. BR residues were present in 23% out of 742 samples collected during and after baiting. We found clear spatial and temporal exposure patterns. High BR residue concentrations mainly occurred within 15m from bait stations. Occurrence and concentrations of residues significantly decreased with increasing distance. This pattern was found in almost all investigated taxa. After baiting, significantly more individuals contained residues than during baiting but concentrations were considerably lower. Residue occurrence and concentrations differed significantly among taxa, with the highest maximal residue concentrations in Apodemus species, which are protected in Germany. Although Sorex species are known to be insectivorous we regularly found residues in this genus. Residues of active agents other than brodifacoum were rare in all samples. The confirmation of substantial primary exposure in non-target small mammals close to the baiting area indicates considerable risk of secondary poisoning of predators, a pathway that was possibly underestimated until now. Our results will help to develop risk mitigation strategies to reduce risk for non-target small mammals, as well as their predators, in relation to biocidal AR usage.

  15. 77 FR 73986 - Marine Mammals; Issuance of Permits

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-12-12

    .... Other marine mammals that may be harassed during surveys include: California sea lions (Zalophus californianus), harbor seals, common dolphins (Delphinus delphis and D. capensis), and Risso's dolphins...

  16. Bacteria and fungi of marine mammals: a review.

    PubMed Central

    Higgins, R

    2000-01-01

    A list of the different bacterial and fungal agents isolated from marine mammals in different parts of the world is presented. Importance is given to some of the most recently identified bacterial agents, including Actinobacillus delphinicola, A. scotiae, and Brucella spp. A list, in alphabetical order, of bacteria recovered from different tissues or organs from marine mammals is presented for the integumentary, respiratory, digestive, genitourinary, and reticuloendothelial systems. Infectious bacterial agents associated with abscesses and with cases of septicemia are also listed. Information about the different fungal agents recovered from marine mammals is summarized. A section covering some of the zoonotic infectious agents recovered from marine mammals is included. PMID:10723596

  17. 77 FR 31835 - Marine Mammals; File No. 16580

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-05-30

    ... objectives of the proposed research are to examine reproductive, nutritional and stress physiology, and... scientists in academic, federal, and state institutions involved in legally authorized marine mammal...

  18. Bartonella infection in small mammals and their ectoparasites in Lithuania.

    PubMed

    Lipatova, Indre; Paulauskas, Algimantas; Puraite, Irma; Radzijevskaja, Jana; Balciauskas, Linas; Gedminas, Vaclovas

    2015-01-01

    The Bartonella pathogen is an emerging zoonotic agent. Epidemiological studies worldwide have demonstrated that small mammals are reservoir hosts of Bartonella spp. and their ectoparasites are potential vectors. The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence of Bartonella infections in small mammals (Rodentia, Insectivora) and their ectoparasites (fleas and ticks) in Lithuania. A total of 430 small mammals representing nine species were captured with live-traps in Lithuania during 2013-2014. A total of 151 fleas representing eight species were collected from 109 (25.8%) small mammals. Five hundred and seventy ticks (Ixodes ricinus) were collected from 68 (16.1%) small mammals. Bartonella DNA was detected in 102 (23.7%) small mammals, 44 (29.1%) fleas and five (3.7%) pooled tick samples. Sequence analysis of 16S-23S rRNA ITS region showed that sequences were identical or similar to Bartonella grahamii, Bartonella taylorii and Bartonella rochalimae. This study is the first investigating the distribution and diversity of Bartonella species in small mammals and their ectoparasites in Lithuania. B. grahamii, B. taylorii, and B. rochalimae were detected in small mammals and their fleas, and B. grahamii in ticks obtained from small mammals.

  19. Placentation in mammals once grouped as insectivores.

    PubMed

    Carter, Anthony M; Enders, Allen C

    2010-01-01

    Interest in insectivoran grade mammals has been reawakened by taxonomic changes that place tenrecs and golden moles in a new order and separate hedgehogs from moles, shrews and solenodons. This survey of their placentation shows there is great variation even within families. As an example three subfamilies of tenrec have been examined. The interhemal region is cellular hemomonochorial in Echinops and Microgale but endotheliochorial in Micropotamogale. Golden moles, which are placed in the same order, have hemodichorial placentation. Many insectivores have complex arrangements for histotrophic nutrition involving columnar trophoblast cells. These range from areolae in moles through complexly folded hemophagous regions in tenrecs to the trophoblastic annulus in shrews. Of these placental characters, few offer support to current phylogenies. However, the case for placing hedgehogs and gymnures in a separate order (Erinaceomorpha) is bolstered by the presence of interstitial implantation, amniogenesis by cavitation, a hemochorial barrier and a prominent spongy zone; these features do not occur in shrews, moles or solenodons (Soricomorpha). Three insectivoran grade mammals deserve close attention as they have been selected for genome sequencing. One of these, the European hedgehog (Erinaceus europaeus), has not been studied with current methodology and renewed investigation of this or the closely related genus Atelerix should be a priority.

  20. Paracoccidioides brasiliensis Infection in Small Wild Mammals.

    PubMed

    Sbeghen, Mônica Raquel; Zanata, Thais Bastos; Macagnan, Rafaela; de Abreu, Kaue Cachuba; da Cunha, Willian Luiz; Watanabe, Maria Angelica Ehara; de Camargo, Zoilo Pires; Ono, Mario Augusto

    2015-12-01

    Paracoccidioidomycosis (PCM) is a systemic mycosis prevalent in Brazil and other Latin American countries. The etiological agents of PCM are the thermo-dimorphic fungi Paracoccidioides brasiliensis and P. lutzii. Taking into account that the natural habitat of Paracoccidioides spp. is still undefined, domestic and wild animals could be useful as indicators of Paracoccidioides spp. presence in endemic areas. The objective of this study was to evaluate the infection of small wild mammals by P. brasiliensis in an endemic area for human PCM. Samples from 38 wild mammals from different species such as Akodon sp., Thaptomys nigrita, Euryoryzomys russatus, Oligoryzomys nigripes, Monodelphis sp., Sooretamys angouya, Abrawayaomys angouya, Abrawayaomys ruschii and Akodontinae sp. were evaluated by ELISA, immunodiffusion, histopathology, nested PCR and culture. The overall positivity to gp43 observed in the ELISA was 23.7%. Samples from heart and liver of one O. nigripes were PCR positive, and the animal was also seropositive to gp43 in ELISA. This study showed that wild animals living in endemic areas for PCM are infected with P. brasiliensis and can be valuable epidemiological markers of the fungus presence in the environment. This is the first evidence of PCM infection in Akodon sp., E. russatus, T. nigrita and O. nigripes.

  1. Yearlong hibernation in a marsupial mammal

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Geiser, Fritz

    2007-11-01

    Many mammals hibernate each year for about 6 months in autumn and winter and reproduce during spring and summer when they are generally not in torpor. I tested the hypothesis that the marsupial pygmy-possum ( Cercartetus nanus), an opportunistic nonseasonal hibernator with a capacity for substantial fattening, would continue to hibernate well beyond winter. I also quantified how long they were able to hibernate without access to food before their body fat stores were depleted. Pygmy-possums exhibited a prolonged hibernation season lasting on average for 310 days. The longest hibernation season in one individual lasted for 367 days. For much of this time, despite periodic arousals after torpor bouts of ˜12.5 days, energy expenditure was reduced to only ˜2.5% of that predicted for active individuals. These observations represent the first report on body-fat-fuelled hibernation of up to an entire year and provide new evidence that prolonged hibernation is not restricted to placental mammals living in the cold.

  2. Earliest known Australian Tertiary mammal fauna

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Godthelp, Henk; Archer, Michael; Cifelli, Richard; Hand, Suzanne J.; Gilkeson, Coral F.

    1992-04-01

    REMAINS of Early Eocene vertebrates from freshwater clays near Murgon, southeastern Queensland, represent Australia's oldest marsupials, bats, non-volant placentals, frogs, madtsoiid snakes, trionychid turtles1and birds. Radiometric dating of illites forming part of the matrix of the mammal-bearing zone has given a minimum age estimate of 54.6 +/- 0.05 x 106 years, which is roughly twice as old as any marsupials previously known from Australia2 and well before the 38 million year (Myr) separation of Australia from Antarctica/South America3. All marsupials so far known from the Tingamarra Local Fauna are more derived (being dilambdodont) than peradectids. None of them is clearly a member of a previously known Australian family, but some could be uniquely plesiomorphic dasyuroids or perameloids. Another is autapomorphically specialized and indicative of at least partial isolation of the Australian portion of Gondwana. Here we report on the discovery of a tooth of the earliest non-volant placental known from Australia, Tingamarra porterorum gen.et sp. nov., which seems to be a condylarth-like placental mammal. The presence of non-volant placentals in the Early Tertiary of Australia challenges a common presumption that marsupials dominated Australia's therian assemblages because of failure of such placentals to reach Australia before the Late Tertiary.

  3. Neuroendocrinology and Sexual Differentiation in Eusocial Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Holmes, Melissa M.; Goldman, Bruce D.; Goldman, Sharry L.; Seney, Marianne L.; Forger, Nancy G.

    2009-01-01

    Sexual differentiation of the mammalian nervous system has been studied intensively for over 25 years. Most of what we know, however, comes from work on relatively non-social species in which direct reproduction (i.e., production of offspring) is virtually the only route to reproductive success. In social species, an individual’s inclusive fitness may include contributions to the gene pool that are achieved by supporting the reproductive efforts of close relatives; this feature is most evident in eusocial organisms. Here, we review what is known about neuroendocrine mechanisms, sexual differentiation, and effects of social status on the brain and spinal cord in two eusocial mammals: the naked mole-rat and Damaraland mole-rat. These small rodents exhibit the most rigidly organized reproductive hierarchy among mammals, with reproduction suppressed in a majority of individuals. Our findings suggest that eusociality may be associated with a relative lack of sex differences and a reduced influence of gonadal hormones on some functions to which these hormones are usually tightly linked. We also identify neural changes accompanying a change in social and reproductive status, and discuss the implications of our findings for understanding the evolution of sex differences and the neuroendocrinology of reproductive suppression. PMID:19416733

  4. Biogeography of time partitioning in mammals

    PubMed Central

    Bennie, Jonathan J.; Duffy, James P.; Inger, Richard; Gaston, Kevin J.

    2014-01-01

    Many animals regulate their activity over a 24-h sleep–wake cycle, concentrating their peak periods of activity to coincide with the hours of daylight, darkness, or twilight, or using different periods of light and darkness in more complex ways. These behavioral differences, which are in themselves functional traits, are associated with suites of physiological and morphological adaptations with implications for the ecological roles of species. The biogeography of diel time partitioning is, however, poorly understood. Here, we document basic biogeographic patterns of time partitioning by mammals and ecologically relevant large-scale patterns of natural variation in “illuminated activity time” constrained by temperature, and we determine how well the first of these are predicted by the second. Although the majority of mammals are nocturnal, the distributions of diurnal and crepuscular species richness are strongly associated with the availability of biologically useful daylight and twilight, respectively. Cathemerality is associated with relatively long hours of daylight and twilight in the northern Holarctic region, whereas the proportion of nocturnal species is highest in arid regions and lowest at extreme high altitudes. Although thermal constraints on activity have been identified as key to the distributions of organisms, constraints due to functional adaptation to the light environment are less well studied. Global patterns in diversity are constrained by the availability of the temporal niche; disruption of these constraints by the spread of artificial lighting and anthropogenic climate change, and the potential effects on time partitioning, are likely to be critical influences on species’ future distributions. PMID:25225371

  5. Biogeography of time partitioning in mammals.

    PubMed

    Bennie, Jonathan J; Duffy, James P; Inger, Richard; Gaston, Kevin J

    2014-09-23

    Many animals regulate their activity over a 24-h sleep-wake cycle, concentrating their peak periods of activity to coincide with the hours of daylight, darkness, or twilight, or using different periods of light and darkness in more complex ways. These behavioral differences, which are in themselves functional traits, are associated with suites of physiological and morphological adaptations with implications for the ecological roles of species. The biogeography of diel time partitioning is, however, poorly understood. Here, we document basic biogeographic patterns of time partitioning by mammals and ecologically relevant large-scale patterns of natural variation in "illuminated activity time" constrained by temperature, and we determine how well the first of these are predicted by the second. Although the majority of mammals are nocturnal, the distributions of diurnal and crepuscular species richness are strongly associated with the availability of biologically useful daylight and twilight, respectively. Cathemerality is associated with relatively long hours of daylight and twilight in the northern Holarctic region, whereas the proportion of nocturnal species is highest in arid regions and lowest at extreme high altitudes. Although thermal constraints on activity have been identified as key to the distributions of organisms, constraints due to functional adaptation to the light environment are less well studied. Global patterns in diversity are constrained by the availability of the temporal niche; disruption of these constraints by the spread of artificial lighting and anthropogenic climate change, and the potential effects on time partitioning, are likely to be critical influences on species' future distributions.

  6. Applying tribology to teeth of hoofed mammals.

    PubMed

    Schulz, Ellen; Calandra, Ivan; Kaiser, Thomas M

    2010-01-01

    Mammals inhabit all types of environments and have evolved chewing systems capable of processing a huge variety of structurally diverse food components. Surface textures of cheek teeth should thus reflect the mechanisms of wear as well as the functional traits involved. We employed surface textures parameters from ISO/DIS 25178 and scale-sensitive fractal analysis (SSFA) to quantify dental wear in herbivorous mammals at the level of an individual wear enamel facet. We evaluated cheek dentitions of two grazing ungulates: the Blue Wildebeest (Connochaetes taurinus) and the Grevy's Zebra (Equus grevyi). Both inhabit the east African grassland savanna habitat, but they belong to fundamentally different taxonomic units. We tested the hypothesis that the foregut fermenting wildebeest and the hindgut fermenting zebra show functional traits in their dentitions that relate to their specific mode of food-composition processing and digestion. In general, surface texture parameters from SSFA as well as ISO/DIS 25178 indicated that individual enamel ridges acting as crushing blades and individual wear facets of upper cheek teeth are significantly different in surface textures in the zebra when compared with the wildebeest. We interpreted the complexity and anisotropy signals to be clearly related to the brittle, dry grass component in the diet of the zebra, unlike the wildebeest, which ingests a more heterogeneous diet including fresh grass and herbs. Thus, SSFA and ISO parameters allow distinctions within the subtle dietary strategies that evolved in herbivorous ungulates with fundamentally different systematic affinities but which exploit a similar dietary niche.

  7. Marine mammal strandings and environmental changes: a 15-year study in the St. Lawrence ecosystem.

    PubMed

    Truchon, Marie-Hélène; Measures, Lena; L'Hérault, Vincent; Brêthes, Jean-Claude; Galbraith, Peter S; Harvey, Michel; Lessard, Sylvie; Starr, Michel; Lecomte, Nicolas

    2013-01-01

    Understanding the effects of climatic variability on marine mammals is challenging due to the complexity of ecological interactions. We used general linear models to analyze a 15-year database documenting marine mammal strandings (1994-2008; n = 1,193) and nine environmental parameters known to affect marine mammal survival, from regional (sea ice) to continental scales (North Atlantic Oscillation, NAO). Stranding events were more frequent during summer and fall than other seasons, and have increased since 1994. Poor ice conditions observed during the same period may have affected marine mammals either directly, by modulating the availability of habitat for feeding and breeding activities, or indirectly, through changes in water conditions and marine productivity (krill abundance). For most species (75%, n = 6 species), a low volume of ice was correlated with increasing frequency of stranding events (e.g. R(2)adj = 0.59, hooded seal, Cystophora cristata). This likely led to an increase in seal mortality during the breeding period, but also to increase habitat availability for seasonal migratory cetaceans using ice-free areas during winter. We also detected a high frequency of stranding events for mysticete species (minke whale, Balaenoptera acutorostrata) and resident species (beluga, Delphinapterus leucas), correlated with low krill abundance since 1994. Positive NAO indices were positively correlated with high frequencies of stranding events for resident and seasonal migratory cetaceans, as well as rare species (R(2)adj = 0.53, 0.81 and 0.34, respectively). This contrasts with seal mass stranding numbers, which were negatively correlated with a positive NAO index. In addition, an unusual multiple species mortality event (n = 114, 62% of total annual mortality) in 2008 was caused by a harmful algal bloom. Our findings provide an empirical baseline in understanding marine mammal survival when faced with climatic variability. This is a promising

  8. Male care and life history traits in mammals

    PubMed Central

    West, Hannah E. R.; Capellini, Isabella

    2016-01-01

    Male care has energetic and opportunity costs, and is more likely to evolve when males gain greater certainty of paternity or when future mating opportunities are scarce. However, little is known about the substantial benefits that males may provide to females and offspring. Using phylogenetic comparative methods and a sample of over 500 mammalian species, we show that mammals in which males carry the offspring have shorter lactation periods, which leads to more frequent breeding events. Provisioning the female is associated with larger litters and shorter lactation. Offspring of species with male care have similar weaning mass to those without despite being supported by a shorter lactation period, implying that they grow faster. We propose that males provide an energetic contribution during the most expensive time of female reproduction, lactation, and that different male care behaviours increase female fecundity, which in turn helps males offset the costs of caring. PMID:27299954

  9. Prevalence of algal toxins in Alaskan marine mammals foraging in a changing arctic and subarctic environment.

    PubMed

    Lefebvre, Kathi A; Quakenbush, Lori; Frame, Elizabeth; Huntington, Kathy Burek; Sheffield, Gay; Stimmelmayr, Raphaela; Bryan, Anna; Kendrick, Preston; Ziel, Heather; Goldstein, Tracey; Snyder, Jonathan A; Gelatt, Tom; Gulland, Frances; Dickerson, Bobette; Gill, Verena

    2016-05-01

    Current climate trends resulting in rapid declines in sea ice and increasing water temperatures are likely to expand the northern geographic range and duration of favorable conditions for harmful algal blooms (HABs), making algal toxins a growing concern in Alaskan marine food webs. Two of the most common HAB toxins along the west coast of North America are the neurotoxins domoic acid (DA) and saxitoxin (STX). Over the last 20 years, DA toxicosis has caused significant illness and mortality in marine mammals along the west coast of the USA, but has not been reported to impact marine mammals foraging in Alaskan waters. Saxitoxin, the most potent of the paralytic shellfish poisoning toxins, has been well-documented in shellfish in the Aleutians and Gulf of Alaska for decades and associated with human illnesses and deaths due to consumption of toxic clams. There is little information regarding exposure of Alaskan marine mammals. Here, the spatial patterns and prevalence of DA and STX exposure in Alaskan marine mammals are documented in order to assess health risks to northern populations including those species that are important to the nutritional, cultural, and economic well-being of Alaskan coastal communities. In this study, 905 marine mammals from 13 species were sampled including; humpback whales, bowhead whales, beluga whales, harbor porpoises, northern fur seals, Steller sea lions, harbor seals, ringed seals, bearded seals, spotted seals, ribbon seals, Pacific walruses, and northern sea otters. Domoic acid was detected in all 13 species examined and had the greatest prevalence in bowhead whales (68%) and harbor seals (67%). Saxitoxin was detected in 10 of the 13 species, with the highest prevalence in humpback whales (50%) and bowhead whales (32%). Pacific walruses contained the highest concentrations of both STX and DA, with DA concentrations similar to those detected in California sea lions exhibiting clinical signs of DA toxicosis (seizures) off the coast

  10. Variability in brain ganglioside content and composition of endothermic mammals, heterothermic hibernators and ectothermic fishes.

    PubMed

    Kappel, T; Hilbig, R; Rahmann, H

    1993-06-01

    Content and composition of brain gangliosides were compared among endothermic mammals, heterothermic hibernators and ectothermic fishes from habitats with extreme ambient temperatures (tropic vs. antarctic waters). In general the content of brain gangliosides in fishes is significantly lower and exhibits a greater variability than in mammals. The composition of brain gangliosides was investigated using both one- and two-dimensional High Performance Thin Layer Chromatography (HPTLC). Both techniques showed a remarkable increase in the number of individual ganglioside fractions and an additional increase of higher polar fractions in fishes as compared with mammals. The 2D-HPTLC revealed a significant decrease in the relative proportion of alkali-labile gangliosides in the course of evolution from fish to mammals. Moreover this decrease in alkali-lability is correlated with the state of thermal adaptation (antarctic fishes, 53-66%; tropical cichlid fish, 35%). These results provide additional evidence for the notion that the extremely high polarity of brain gangliosides, especially of cold-blooded vertebrates, reflects a very efficient mechanism on the molecular level to keep the neuronal membrane functional under low temperature conditions.

  11. Arboreal locomotion in Eurasian harvest mice Micromys Minutus (Rodentia: Muridae): The gaits of small mammals.

    PubMed

    Karantanis, Nikolaos-Evangelos; Rychlik, Leszek; Herrel, Anthony; Youlatos, Dionisios

    2017-03-23

    Body size imposes significant constraints on arboreal locomotion. Despite the wealth of research in larger arboreal mammals, there is a lack of data on arboreal gaits of small mammals. In this context, the present study explores arboreal locomotion in one of the smallest rodents, the Eurasian harvest mice Micromys minutus (∼10 g). We examined gait metrics (i.e., diagonality, duty factor [DF], DF index, velocity, stride length, and stride frequency) of six adult male mice on simulated arboreal substrates of different sizes (2, 5, 10, and 25 mm) and inclinations (0(0) and 45(0) ). Micromys minutus employed slow, lateral sequence symmetrical gaits on the smaller substrates, which shifted to progressively faster symmetrical gaits of higher diagonality on larger substrates. Both ascents and descents were associated with a higher diagonality, and ascents with a higher DF index compared to horizontal locomotion, underscoring the role of the grasping hind feet. Velocity increase was brought about primarily by an increase in stride frequency, a pattern often encountered in other small mammals, with a secondary and significant contribution of stride length. These findings indicate that, except for velocity and the way it is regulated, there are no significant differences in gait metrics between larger and smaller arboreal mammals. Moreover, the locomotor adaptations of Eurasian harvest mice represent behavioral mechanisms that promote stable, safe, and continuous navigation along slender substrates and ultimately contribute to the successful exploitation of the arboreal milieu.

  12. 77 FR 3233 - National Policy for Distinguishing Serious From Non-Serious Injuries of Marine Mammals

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2012-01-23

    ...-serious injuries of marine mammals. The Directives provide technical guidance for analyzing marine mammal... results into marine mammal stock assessment reports and marine mammal conservation management regimes (e.g... technical guidance for analyzing marine mammal injury reports and incorporating the results into...

  13. Spatially-resolved taxon-specific phytoplankton production and grazing dynamics in relation to iron distributions in the Equatorial Pacific between 110 and 140°W

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Selph, Karen E.; Landry, Michael R.; Taylor, Andrew G.; Yang, Eun-Jin; Measures, Christopher I.; Yang, Jingjing; Stukel, Michael R.; Christensen, Stephanie; Bidigare, Robert R.

    2011-03-01

    Phytoplankton dynamics were investigated in the eastern equatorial Pacific at 32 stations sampled during two cruises (December 2004 and September 2005). Based on standing stock analyses from HPLC pigments, flow cytometry and microscopy, we used a modified 2-treatment approach of the seawater dilution method to estimate taxon-specific phytoplankton growth and mortality rates in 8-depth per station profiles. These data were complemented by contemporaneous measurements of dissolved iron (Fe). The stations encompassed an equatorial zonal gradient (110 to 140°W) of diminishing eastward Fe availability in the euphotic zone from upwelling of the Equatorial Undercurrent (EUC). Latitudinal variation was assessed by meridional transects at 110 and 140°W. Overall, euphotic zone averaged growth rates were 0.53±0.17 d -1 (total chlorophyll a), 0.34±0.15 d -1 (divinyl chlorophyll a) and 0.86±0.32 d -1 (fucoxanthin). Microzooplankton grazing accounted for 50-60% of daily production of eukaryotic algae, whereas essentially all growth of phototrophic prokaryotes was consumed daily. Fucoxanthin, representing diatoms, was a minor component of the accessory pigments, but diatom growth rates were both significantly higher than other taxonomically defined groups and dropped off more sharply with depth (low light level). Strikingly, no spatial or temporal trends were seen in the 256 growth rate measurements for each measured pigment. However, the diminishing eastward equatorial Fe gradient was associated with deepening subsurface pigment maxima and decreasing surface-layer pigment stocks (down to the 8% light level). In addition, integrated standing stocks of total chlorophyll a and Prochlorococcus (divinyl chlorophyll a) were strongly correlated with integrated iron at equatorial upwelling stations, yet no correlation with Fe was seen for any of the eukaryotic groups, including diatoms. This latter result is contrary to expectations from previous Fe addition experiments ( in situ

  14. Arctic marine mammals and climate change: impacts and resilience.

    PubMed

    Moore, Sue E; Huntington, Henry P

    2008-03-01

    extended foraging periods in formerly ice-covered seas, but (3) they may face increasing competition from seasonally migrant species, which will likely infiltrate Arctic habitats. The means to track and assess Arctic ecosystem change using sentinel marine mammal species are suggested to offer a framework for scientific investigation and responsible resource management.

  15. Mammals of the Braulio Carrillo- La Selva Complex, Costa Rica

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Timm, Robert M.; Wilson, Don E.; Clauson, Barbara L.; LaVal, Richard K.; Vaughan, Christopher S.

    1989-01-01

    Costa Rica's La Selva-Braulio Carrillo complex encompasses a 60-km protected corridor of Caribbean rain and cloud forest extending from 30 m at the La Selva Biological Station to 2,906 m at the top of Volcán Barva. The 52,000-ha complex covers four life zones and two transitional zones, including tropical wet forest, tropical wet forest cool-transition, tropical premontane wet-transition rain forest, tropical premontane rain forest, lower montane rain forest, and montane rain forest. Located in the northeastern part of the country, the area is representative of Central American Caribbean slope forests that extend from Mexico to Panama. The extensive elevational gradient of the complex provides protected habitat for a variety of altitudinal migrants. With support from the National Geographic Society and Rice Foundation, the Organization for Tropical Studies organized a biological survey of the complex in early 1986. The mammal team worked at six sites along the elevational transect established by the expedition: 300 m, 700 m, 1,000 m, 1,500 m, 2,050 m, and 2,600 m. We supplemented our collecting records with unpublished records made available by colleagues, records in the published literature, and specimens in museum collections. In addition, observations recorded by a variety of observers at the La Selva Biological Station are summarized. The mammal fauna of the complex comprises 142 species including 79 bats, 23 rodents, 15 carnivores, 7 marsupials, 6 edentates, 4 artiodactyls, 3 primates, 2 rabbits, 2 shrews, and 1 perissodactyl. At least 10 additional species are likely to occur there. The only species of mammal likely to have been extirpated from the area is the giant anteater. Recognizing the importance of the area to wildlife and to mankind in general, the government of Costa Rica added 13,500 ha to the complex on 13 April 1986. This area, previously known as the “Zona Protectora,” provided the mid-elevational link between the lowlands of the La Selva

  16. Subdivision design and stewardship affect bird and mammal use of conservation developments.

    PubMed

    Farr, Cooper M; Pejchar, Liba; Reed, Sarah E

    2017-02-07

    Developing effective tools for conservation on private lands is increasingly important for global biodiversity conservation; private lands are located in more productive and biologically diverse areas, and they face accelerated rates of land conversion. One strategy is conservation development (CD) subdivisions, which cluster houses in a small portion of a property and preserve the remaining land as protected open space. Despite widespread use, the characteristics that make CD more or less effective at achieving biodiversity conservation are not well understood. We investigated CD's ability to successfully protect animal populations by examining bird and mammal occurrences in 14 CD subdivisions and four undeveloped areas (range: 14-432 ha) in northern Colorado, USA. Using point count and camera trap data in an occupancy modeling framework, we evaluated the relative importance of nine subdivision design factors (e.g., housing density, proportion of CD protected) and 14 stewardship factors (e.g., presence of livestock, percent native vegetation cover) in influencing the overall community composition and the probability of use by 16 birds and six mammals. We found that habitat use by 75% of birds and 83% of mammals was associated with design characteristics that maximized the natural or undisturbed land area both within and near the development (e.g., proportion of CD protected, total area of protected open space, proportion of natural land cover in the surrounding landscape). These factors were also associated with an increasing dominance of human-sensitive bird species, larger-bodied mammals, and mammals with larger home ranges. Habitat use by birds was also influenced by local land use composition and quality, and use by several bird and mammal species decreased with increased localized disturbances. We found few differences in habitat use between sampling sites in undeveloped areas and in CD subdivisions. These similarities indicate that, if CDs are large enough

  17. The East Africa Oligocene intertrappean beds: Regional distribution, depositional environments and Afro/Arabian mammal dispersals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abbate, Ernesto; Bruni, Piero; Ferretti, Marco Peter; Delmer, Cyrille; Laurenzi, Marinella Ada; Hagos, Miruts; Bedri, Omar; Rook, Lorenzo; Sagri, Mario; Libsekal, Yosief

    2014-11-01

    The extensive outpouring of the Oligocene Trap basalts over eastern Africa and western Arabia was interrupted by a period of quiescence marked by the deposition of terrestrial sediments. These so-called intertrappean beds are often lignitiferous and yield recurrent floras and faunas, sometimes represented by endemic mammals. We intended to highlight the peculiar features of these sedimentary intercalations using a large-scale approach including eastern Africa and the western Arabian peninsula. Starting from a new mapping in the Eritrean highland, the intertrappean beds resulted a continuous level that was a few tens of meters thick and traceable for some tens of kilometers. They consist of fluvial red, green and gray mudstones and siltstones with subordinate channelized pebbly sandstones, and lignite seams. Two new 40Ar-39Ar datings constraint the age of the intertrappean beds between 29.0 Ma and 23.6 Ma. The outcrops near Mendefera have yielded the remains of two proboscidean families, the Deinotheriidae and the Gomphoteriidae. The morphological grade of the two Mendefera proboscideans would suggest a more derived stage than that of representatives of the same families from other Oligocene African sites (e.g., Chilga, Ethiopia). An Oligocene age could be inferred for them. The occurrence of the genus Prodeinotherium at Mai Gobro possibly represents the first occurrence of this taxon, while the Gomphotheirum sp. might represent the oldest occurrence of this taxon in Africa before its dispersal towards Asia and Europe. Proboscideans have also been found in the lowland intertrappean beds of Dogali near Massawa. These sediments were contiguous with the Eritrean highland intertrappean beds during the Oligocene, but are now tectonically displaced from them by two thousand meters of vertical topographical distance. Dogali is also known for the occurrence of possible Deinotheriidae remains and the primitive elephantoid Eritreum. Entering the Ethiopian highland, an

  18. Low-exposure tritium radiotoxicity in mammals

    SciTech Connect

    Dobson, R.L.

    1982-02-11

    Studies of tritium radiotoxicity involving chronic /sup 3/H0H exposures in mammals demonstrate in both mice and monkeys that biological effects can be measured following remarkably low levels of exposure - levels in the range of serious practical interest to radiation protection. These studies demonstrate also that deleterious effects of /sup 3/H beta radiation do not differ significantly from those of gamma radiation at high exposures. In contrast, however, at low exposures tritium is significantly more effective than gamma rays, rad for rad, by a factor approaching 3. This is important for hazard evaluation and radiation protection because knowledge concerning biological effects of chronic low-level radiation exposure has come mainly from gamma-ray data; and predictions based on gamma-ray data will underestimate tritium effects - especially at low exposures - unless the RBE is fully taken into account.

  19. Initiation of Meiotic Recombination in Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Kumar, Rajeev; de Massy, Bernard

    2010-01-01

    Meiotic recombination is initiated by the induction of programmed DNA double strand breaks (DSBs). DSB repair promotes homologous interactions and pairing and leads to the formation of crossovers (COs), which are required for the proper reductional segregation at the first meiotic division. In mammals, several hundred DSBs are generated at the beginning of meiotic prophase by the catalytic activity of SPO11. Currently it is not well understood how the frequency and timing of DSB formation and their localization are regulated. Several approaches in humans and mice have provided an extensive description of the localization of initiation events based on CO mapping, leading to the identification and characterization of preferred sites (hotspots) of initiation. This review presents the current knowledge about the proteins known to be involved in this process, the sites where initiation takes place, and the factors that control hotspot localization. PMID:24710101

  20. Sperm proteome and reproductive technologies in mammals.

    PubMed

    Li, Chun-Jin; Wang, Dong; Zhou, Xu

    2016-10-01

    Sperm is highly differentiated cell that can be easily obtained and purified. Mature sperm is considered to be transcriptionally and translationally silent and incapable of protein synthesis. Recently, a large number of proteins have been identified in sperm from different species by using the proteomic approaches. Clinically, sperm proteins can be used as markers for male infertility due to different protein profiles identified in sperm from fertile and infertile male animals. Recent evidences have shown that the conditions of sperm preservation in vitro can also change the sperm protein profiles. This paper reviews the recent scientific publications available to address sperm proteome and their relationship with sperm cryopreservation, capacitation, fertilization, and separation of X and Y sperm. Future directions in the application of sperm proteomics to develop or optimize reproductive technologies in mammals are also discussed.